Aviation Accident Summaries

Aviation Accident Summary WPR09IA123

Salt Lake City, UT, USA

Aircraft #1




While taxiing on the ramp to their assigned terminal gate, the flight crew observed a stationary fuel truck parked to the right of their position. In order to ensure clearance, the captain positioned the airplane left of the taxiway centerline by 4 feet while the first officer monitored the clearance between the right wingtip and fuel truck. Subsequently, the right wing struck the fuel truck. The first officer stated that due to sun glare on the wing and fuel truck, he had a hard time judging the clearance between the wingtip and fuel truck. The wingtip damage was evaluated as minor.

Factual Information

On February 21, 2009, about 1112 mountain standard time, an Embraer EMB-120ER, N270YV, sustained minor damage when it struck an occupied stationary fuel truck while taxiing at the Salt Lake City International Airport (SLC), Salt Lake City, Utah. The airplane is registered to Wachovia Financial Services Inc. of Charlotte, North Carolina, and operated by SkyWest Airlines Inc., St. George, Utah, under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 121. The airline transport rated captain, commercial rated first officer, flight attendant, and mechanic onboard the airplane were not injured. The occupant in the fuel truck was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and an instrument flight rules flight plan was filed for the maintenance reposition flight. The cross-country flight originated from Elko, Nevada at 0851 Pacific standard time and was destined for SLC. The captain and first officer reported that after landing on runway 16R, the flight was cleared to taxi to spot 23. The flight crew exited the runway and upon reaching spot 23, contacted ramp control. The ramp controller cleared the flight to taxi to spot 2 (Gate Echo 2 Alpha). While taxiing along the taxiway centerline, the flight crew noticed a parked fuel truck ahead and to the right of the aircraft located within a non-movement area. The captain stated that he then positioned the airplane about four feet to the left of the taxiway centerline in an attempt to avoid the fuel truck. The first officer monitored the clearance between the right wing and fuel truck. Subsequently, the right wingtip of the airplane struck the fuel truck across from gate Echo 32. The flight crew stated that after the collision, they immediately stopped the airplane and shut down both engines. The first officer stated that he had a "hard time" judging the distance between the right wing and fuel truck due to sun glare on the wing and fuel truck. Examination of the airplane by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector revealed that the right wingtip sustained minor damage. The fuel truck exhibited a dent and scuffing along the fuel tank about mid-span.

Probable Cause and Findings

The flight crew's failure to maintain clearance from the stationary vehicle while taxiing.


Source: NTSB Aviation Accident Database

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