Aviation Investigation A15H0002

Collision with terrain of Air Canada Flight 624 at Halifax Stanfield International Airport

The occurrence

On 29 March 2015, an Air Canada Airbus A320-200 aircraft (registration C-FTJP, serial number 233), was being operated as Flight AC624 from Toronto, Ontario, to Halifax, Nova Scotia, with 133 passengers and 5 crew on board.

The aircraft was flying the localizer approach procedure to land on Runway 05 at the Halifax Stanfield International Airport. A localizer approach only provides pilots with lateral guidance to align the aircraft with the runway for landing. During the approach, the engines of the aircraft severed power transmission lines, and then the main landing gear and rear fuselage impacted the snow-covered ground about 225 metres before the runway threshold. The aircraft continued through a localizer antenna, then impacted the ground in a nose down attitude, about 70 metres before the threshold. It then bounced and slid along the runway, coming to rest on the left side of the runway about 570 metres beyond the threshold.

The passengers and crew evacuated the aircraft; 25 people sustained injuries and were taken to local hospitals. The aircraft was substantially damaged. There was no post-crash fire.

Map of the area


Photo of Doug McEwen

Doug McEwen joined the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) in April 1998 as a regional investigator - Technical in the TSB's Pacific regional office in Richmond, British Columbia.

Prior to joining the TSB, he worked as an aircraft maintenance engineer. During that time, he was involved in the maintenance and modification of a variety of aircraft, primarily in the aerial application business.

Since joining the TSB, Mr. McEwen has participated in a number of major investigations, including Swissair 111, MK Airlines, Air France and Cougar 491.

In 2001, he transferred to the TSB's Engineering Branch in Ottawa where he was involved in various air, marine, pipeline, and rail regional investigations.

Since 2008, Mr. McEwen has been a senior regional investigator - Technical at the Atlantic regional office in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia.


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TSB investigation process

There are 3 phases to a TSB investigation
  1. Field phase: a team of investigators examines the occurrence site and wreckage, interviews witnesses and collects pertinent information.
  2. Examination and analysis phase: the TSB reviews pertinent records, tests components of the wreckage in the lab, determines the sequence of events and identifies safety deficiencies. When safety deficiencies are suspected or confirmed, the TSB advises the appropriate authority without waiting until publication of the final report.
  3. Report phase: a confidential draft report is approved by the Board and sent to persons and corporations who are directly concerned by the report. They then have the opportunity to dispute or correct information they believe to be incorrect. The Board considers all representations before approving the final report, which is subsequently released to the public.

For more information, see our Investigation process page.

The TSB is an independent agency that investigates marine, pipeline, railway and aviation transportation occurrences. Its sole aim is the advancement of transportation safety. It is not the function of the Board to assign fault or determine civil or criminal liability.


Final report

Aviation Investigation Report A15H0002
Collision with terrain
Air Canada
Airbus Industrie A320-211, C-FTJP
Halifax/Stanfield International Airport
Halifax, Nova Scotia
29 March 2015

Media materials

News releases

Airline approach procedures, snowstorm and airfield lighting were factors in March 2015 collision with terrain in Halifax, Nova Scotia
Read the news release


Ground contact prior to runway threshold of Air Canada Flight 624 during approach to Halifax Stanfield International Airport (A15H0002)
Read the news release


Collision with terrain involving an Air Canada Airbus A320 at Stanfield International Airport, Halifax, Nova Scotia
Read the news release


Investigation findings (A15H0002) in the March 2015 collision with terrain involving an Air Canada Airbus A320 at the Halifax Stanfield International Airport, Nova Scotia
Read the backgrounder


News conference for the release of Aviation Investigation Report A15H0002: Opening remarks
Kathy Fox, TSB Chair
Doug McEwen, TSB Investigator-in-Charge
Read the opening remarks

Media advisories

TSB will hold a news conference to release its investigation report into the March 2015 collision with terrain at the Halifax Stanfield International Airport, Nova Scotia
Read the media advisory


TSB to hold news conference at Stanfield International Airport
Read the media advisory

Deployment notices

TSB deploys a team to a runway excursion involving an Air Canada aircraft that occurred at the Halifax International Airport in Nova Scotia
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Video and audio materials


A15H0002: Collision with terrain at the Halifax Stanfield International Airport
Watch the animation