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6th of April 2016

Updated: Apr 6, 2022

A de Havilland DHC-3 Otter, equipped with floats and powered by a P&W Canada PT6a-34 engine, was on a sightseeing flight to Dry Tortugas Islands 70 miles west of Key-Wets. Late in the afternoon, on this day in aviation history in 2016. Onboard the aircraft were one pilot and 10 passengers.

The aircraft just prior to recovery from the runway (Source:

After completion of the sightseeing flight, the aircraft was vectored for an approach to the active runway, Runway 09, at Key-West International Airport and carried out a textbook landing shortly afterward.

According to statements made by the passengers, they commented to each other how "feather-soft the landing was" as it rolled down the runway. A loud crunch was heard as the aircraft was about to turn off the runway. The aircraft leaned to the right, with the right-hand wing tip hitting the ground. The righthand float had collapsed. The pilot immediately stopped the aircraft and Start of the recovery operation completed the emergency shutdown (source: checklist.

None of the occupants of the aircraft was injured during the failure of the float and the subsequent evacuation of the aircraft. The airport was closed for 90 minutes while the aircraft was being recovered.

Close-up of the aircraft during the recovery shows the failed right-hand float. (source:

The aircraft was repaired and returned to service soon after the incident,

V2 Aviation - Training & Maintenance has not been able to find an NTSB report on the incident.

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