Event Details

Title:Uncontained engine failure, National Airlines, Inc., DC-10-10, N60NA, Near Albuquerque, New Mexico, November 3, 1973
Micro summary:This McDonnell Douglas DC-10-10 experienced an uncontained engine failure in cruise, with components penetrating the fuselate.
Event Time:1973-11-03 at 1640 MST
File Name:1973-11-03-2-US.pdf
Publishing Agency:National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB)
Publishing Country:USA
Report number:NTSB-AAR-75-2
Site of event:Cruise, FL390 65 nm SW of Albuquerque, NM
Departure:Houston, TX
Destination:McCarran International Airport, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Airplane Type(s):McDonnell Douglas DC-10-10
Flight Phase:Cruise
Operator(s):National Airlines
Type of flight:Revenue
Serious Injuries:24
Other Injuries:0
Executive Summary:On November 3, 1973, National Airlines, Inc., Flight 27 was operating as a scheduled passenger flight between Miami, Florida, and San Francisco, California, with intermediate stops at New Orleans, Louisiana, Houston, Texas, and Las Vegas, Nevada. About 1640 MST while the arcraft was cruising at 39,000 feet 65 nmi southwest of Albuquerque, New Mexico, the No. 3 engine fan assembly disintegrated and its fragments penetrated the fuselage, the Nos. 1 and 2 engine nacelles, and the right wing area. The resultant damage.caused decompression of the aircraft cabin and the loss of certain electrical and hydraulic services. One cabin window, which was struck by a fragment of the fan assembly, separated from the fuselage, and the passenger who was sitting next to that window was forced through the opening and ejected from the aircraft.

The flightcrew initiated an emergency descent, and the aircraft was landed safely at Albuquerque International Airport 19 minutes after the engine failed. The 115 passengers and 12 crewmembers exited the aircraft by using the emergency slides.

As a result of the accident, 1 passenger died and 24 persons were treated for smoke inhalation, ear problems, and minor abrasions.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of this accident was the disintegration of the No. 3 engine fan assembly as a result of an interaction between the fan blade tips and the fan case. The fan-tip rub condition was caused by the acceleration of the engine to an abnormally high fan speed which initiated a multiwave, vibratory resonance within t h e fan section of the engine. The precise reason or reasons for the acceleration and the onset of the destructive vibration could not be determined conclusively.

As a result of this accident, the Safety Board has made nine recommendations to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
Learning Keywords:Operations - Rapid Depressurization
Systems - Electrical
Systems - Engine - Uncontained Engine Failure
Systems - Hydraulics
Consequence - Damage - Airframe or fuselage


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