Tamarack Disputes Findings of Probable Cause by NTSB Concerning the 2018 Citation Jet Accident

Tamarack cites facts and evidence showing that Tamarack’s Active Winglets, installed on the CitationJet involved in the November 30, 2018, fatal accident, were fully operational and did not cause or contribute to the accident. We disagree with the National Transportation Safety Board’s (NTSB’s) Final Report today that concludes Active Winglets installed on the aircraft N525EG were the probable cause of the accident, alleging there was, “asymmetric deployment of the leftwing load alleviation system for undetermined reasons.” The forensic evidence collected in the investigation indicates that the load alleviation system was indeed operational, and deployed symmetrically, upon impact. There are inconsistencies within the report that do not support the conclusion published by the NTSB.

Of particular note, the NTSB Final Report acknowledges that the aircraft was rolling at 5 degrees per second when the autopilot automatically disconnected at 30 degrees of bank, not at 45 degrees as would be the case for an excessive bank condition caused by an uncommanded roll. The investigation fails to explain or address the fact that the autopilot disconnected for other reasons.

Tamarack has fully cooperated with the NTSB during the investigation. The NTSB published a revised Factual Report on October 5, 2021, and just one month later published the Final Report, without taking into consideration facts that indicate other causes could have caused the accident, as the Active Winglet modification was fully operating. Tamarack addressed this in a recent submission, that was ignored by the NTSB. The submission can be read here:

The NTSB Final Report also includes information that the pilot was able to attempt some corrective action late in the flight at very high speeds, but fails to address that an Active Winglet failure would have been easier to recover at slower speeds. These inconsistencies and missing factual elements could be material clues for understanding what caused or contributed to the accident, which could ultimately help the industry prevent other similar accidents.

Tamarack extends its deepest condolences to the families and friends of those who died in the 2018 tragic accident. That said, we believe all parties and aviation as a whole are interested in considering all the facts of the accident, resulting in an accurate probable cause finding by the NTSB that will lead to preventing future accidents involving aircraft. Tamarack intends to request the NTSB reconsider its finding, as per its own procedures. Tamarack will provide a more detailed response after further consideration of the NTSB’s recent announcement.