No ‘specific’ cause in Argyll air crash
AN AIR crash that killed a young couple returning home to Tiree last April had no ‘specific’ cause, an Air Accident Investigation concluded this week.
GP Margaret Ann Rous, 37, and her husband David Rous, 28, were reported missing after their Piper Cherokee plane crashed into rugged terrain on the western flank of the downslope of Beinn nan Lus, near to Taynuilt.
Mr Rous, who was piloting the aircraft on April 4, 2015, was well trained and is said to have shown an ‘above average standard’ and ‘a good level of ability’ during his training. He had previously shown a responsible approach to poor weather when flying from Tiree.
But in near freezing conditions in some moderate cloud cover in deteriorating weather conditions, the report identifies: ‘It is likely that the pilot realised it was not going to be possible to continue the flight and decided to return to Dundee (where he had taken off) or another airfield.’
The report states: ‘No specific cause for the accident could be identified but the descent in Instrument Meteorological Conditions, IMC, [using instruments rather than looking outside] with extreme aircraft attitudes suggests that the pilot was experiencing some form of spatial disorientation; the recorded data and impact parameters suggest that the accident occurred following a loss of control, possibly in cloud.
‘Whether this was due to an attempted turn back manoeuvre or simply loss of control in IMC is not known.
‘In addition, the meteorological conditions were conducive to airframe icing, which had the potential to degrade the aerodynamic characteristics of the aircraft and thus may have been a factor in this accident.’
Memorial services were held on the island for the popular local couple shortly after the incident.
Margaret Ann Rous and
husband David Rous.