Event Details


Title:Turbulence, Northwest Airlines, Inc., Boeing 747-151, N606US, Over the North Pacific Ocean, 105 Nautical Miles West of 150 East Longitude at 36 North Latitude, April 12, 1972
Micro summary:Severe clear air turbulence on this Boeing 747 injured several occupants.
Event Time:1972-04-12 at 1140 GMT
File Name:1972-04-12-US.pdf
Publishing Agency:National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB)
Publishing Country:USA
Report number:NTSB-AAR-72-27
Pages:26
Site of event:Cruise 33,000', 50 minutes after departure from Tokyo
Departure:Tokyo International Airport (Haneda), Tokyo, Japan
Destination:Honolulu International Airport, Honolulu, Hawaii, USA
Airplane Type(s):Boeing 747-151
Flight Phase:Cruise
Registration(s):N606US
Operator(s):Northwest Airlines
Type of flight:Revenue
Occupants:160
Fatalities:0
Serious Injuries:14
Minor/Non-Injured:146
Other Injuries:0
Executive Summary:Northwest Airlines Flight 22 of April 12, 1972, a Boeing 747-151, N606US, encountered unforecast severe turbulence at cruise altitude approximately 50 minutes after departure from Tokyo, Japan, while en route to Honolulu, Hawaii. There were 146 passengers and a crew of 14 aboard the aircraft. Seven of the passengers received minor injuries, and two received serious injuries. Five cabin attendants received minor injuries.

The aircraft was in level flight a t 33,000 feet in smooth air when it encountered turbulence which ranged in Intensity from light to severe for approximately 55 seconds. The "Fasten Seatbelt'' sign was illuminated Immediately when the turbulence was encountered; however, during the period of the turbulence, some of the passengers and flight attendants were thrown about in the cabin and sustained the aforementioned injuries.

The aircraft was undamaged and continued on to Honolulu where the injured persons were deplaned and hospitalized.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of this accident was the entry of the aircraft into an area of unforecast and unexpected severe clear air turbulence when some occupants did not have their seatbelts fastened.

Subsequent to the investigations of previous B-747 accidents involving turbulence, the Safety Board recommended that the Federal Aviation Administration require regulatory Improvements concerning seatbelt discipline, air carrier policy on deviation of flight with injured passengers, and reassessment of the required number and types of on-board first-aid kits and adequacy of their contents. Also, as the result of a special study in the Pacific area to review meteorological, communications, and air traffic control facilities and services of the United States, a recommendation was made to various pilots' associations for improvement of the reporting of meteorological information in in-flight pilot reports.
Learning Keywords:Operations - Turbulence
Consequence - Flight Attendant Fatality - Injury
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