On the 17th of November 2015 the amphibian plane CESSNA U206F having Megara as final destination, tried unsuccessfully to take off, out of Hydra’s Port and as a result the right floater was damaged. It was then towed towards Mandraki gulf, by the local port police, where it was laid ashore for repairs and further inspection. On the 19th of September 2016, after being repaired and thoroughly inspected, it was decided to fly the plane to Agious Theodorous. Upon arrival there, the plane would dock on a designated area to sustain repairs to the landing gear that had been damaged by corrosion caused by the long stay nearby the sea.
Before takeoff, the crew filled 150 litr. Of fuel, using a special funnel, to prevent debris from entering the tank. Samples were taken to ensure the fuel was free from water. The fuel was stored in tanks in a storehouse close to Hydra’s port. Next the crew checked the oil levels of the engine and the possible presence of water in the floaters and found everything was in order. After reporting the plan to the flight tower and 3 miles away from Mandraki gulf, the crew did numerous attempts to take off, following the procedure manual but the plane, couldn’t reach the appropriate speed. At the time of the accident the area was hit by mild winds and visibility was more than 5 miles under a partially cloudy sky.
After the unsuccessful take off attempts, the plane continued its course gliding like a boat nearby of Foflaka beach in St. George of Methana. While cruising at a speed of 5knots and for none specified reasons it tilted firstly to its right side and following to its left and as a result it tipped over, after completing a course of 42km from the starting point. The two passengers were rescued by nearby fishermen, while the plane was towed to the nearby cove of St. George. There, The captain anchored the plane out of the cove dock, using anchors provided by locals. The plane could not enter the cove because its depth was very little and the plane touched the seabed and as a result it couldn’t be protected by the weather elements. That led to the decision to move the plane to the nearby port of Metahana. During the towing, the rope broke and the plane sunk in an area that made it difficult to locate its exact position. It was then found by a local fisherman, on a depth of 45 meters, one month later.
Manufacturer : CESSNA AIRCRAFT Co.
Serial Number : U20602787
Year of Manufacture: 1975
Maximum mass of Take off: 1633kg.
Total hours of use: 5.045 hours
Total hours since the last 100hrs inspection: 24 hrs
Number of take offs/ landings : 12
Cessna U206F belongs to a type of single engine planes of general aviation, 6 seats, with non retractable landing gear. It I has a variety of uses among commercial and recreational aviation, in sectors like aerial photography, sky jump, etc. It can also be equipped with floaters for water environments and also with snow gliders.
The plane is laying on the seabed, upside down on 41,5 meters of depth and remains in an excellent condition. The engine blades have no dents or serious damage and the rest of the hull and cockpit are almost intact, proof of the gentle sinking from the sea surface. The plane faces 310 degrees (NW-SE). The diver can easily locate the towing rope, attached on the bar between the floaters. All the instruments were found in the cockpit, like the communications headphones, the flight plan envelope, fire extinguishers etc.
Sources: (1) AAIASB incident report 5/2018
(2) Aircraft Captain’s report