Close call as ‘overloaded’ pilots missed plane stall hazard

Pilots on an Albany-bound flight that had to turn around and return to Perth were overloaded with tasks after caution lights lit up, causing them to not notice a big reduction in air speed that could have made the plane stall.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau deemed the incident on a Regional Express flight on July 6 “serious”, but fortunately, the aircraft carrying 16 passengers landed safely.

During the climb, flight crew were alerted to a fault in the turboprop’s wing de-ice system, which they couldn’t clear after levelling off.

They began descending to get below conditions where icing may form and decided to return to Perth.

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