Event Details


Title:Turbulence injury, Boeing 737-724, February 19, 2002
Micro summary:This Boeing 737-724 encountered turbulence while climbing, injuring a flight attendant.
Event Time:2002-02-19 at 1830 CST
File Name:2002-02-19-US.pdf
Publishing Agency:National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB)
Publishing Country:USA
Report number:NYC02LA065
Pages:6
Site of event:Beaumont, TX
Departure:George Bush Intercontinental Airport, Houston, Texas, USA
Destination:Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, Arlington County, Virginia, USA
Airplane Type(s):Boeing 737-724
Flight Phase:Climb
Registration(s):N24736
Operator(s):Continental Airlines
Type of flight:Revenue
Occupants:75
Fatalities:
Serious Injuries:1
Minor/Non-Injured:74
Other Injuries:0
Executive Summary:

NTSB short summary:

An inadvertent encounter with convective induced turbulence, which injured a flight attendant. Factors were the failure of the airline to supply direction to the flight crew to indicate when the flight attendants could begin cabin service, and the convective induced turbulence.

NTSB synopsis:

The Boeing 737 departed into an area of known thunderstorms. After departure, at an altitude of 15,000 feet, the flight was operating in and out of clouds. The pilot reported that he was not receiving any significant weather radar returns ahead of the airplane. However, as he cleared a layer of clouds, he observed a cumulus cloud that was ahead of the airplane. The cloud was too close to avoid and he flew through the top of the cloud. While in the cloud, the airplane encountered turbulence which threw a flight attendant located in the rear of the airplane into the air, and he subsequently fell and fractured his ankle. The captain had briefed the crew prior to departure, but did not include any specific comments about delaying the start of cabin service until clear of the thunderstorms, nor was he specifically required to. The airline had no written direction for the flight attendants to know when they could leave their seats and begin cabin service.

NTSB factual narrative text:

On February 19, 2002, about 1830 central standard time, a Boeing 737-724, N24736, operated by Continental Airlines, Inc., as flight 1558, encountered turbulence near Beaumont, Texas. One flight attendant was seriously injured. There were no injuries to the 2 certificated airline transport pilots, 2 other flight attendants, or 70 passengers. The airplane was not damaged. Instrument meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of occurrence, for the flight that departed George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH), Houston, Texas, destined for Ronald Regan Washington National Airport (DCA), Washington, DC. Flight 1558 was being operated on a instrument flight rules (IFR) flight plan, and conducted under 14 CFR Part 121.

The captain stated:

"...The briefing [to the flight attendants] was standard...The takeoff and climb out were uneventful. While being vectored by ATC, we climbed to 15,000 ft. ATC then cleared us to BPT (Beaumont). I cannot recall how far from BPT the incident occurred. Radar was showing no significant weather in front of us. Still at 15,000 feet, I was flying in and out of thin stratus clouds. I broke out to find a cumulus cloud in front of the AC. I immediately started a right turn, but it was too close and the AC went through the top of the cloud. At this point we encountered the turbulence...."

The first officer stated:

"...The weather was windy with multiple cloud layers and no defined ceiling; but for the most part was overcast. The climb-out was bumpy with continuous chop, as we popped in and out of the cloud layers.

The injured flight attendant stated:

"...Takeoff was normal as we left Houston. After getting the recycle seat belt signal...I started with my aft galley position. I pulled out the beverage cart and parked it on aircraft right in the galley and set the brake. I turned and faced the front of the aircraft (I was going to go into the lave to get some paper towels for the beverage cart) as I was standing there, the aircraft seemed to suddenly drop out from under my feet and I went up into the air. Then as I was coming back down, the aircraft seemed to snap back up, at which time my left leg hit the floor first, and then I ended up on my tail bone on the floor..."

A non-duty status flight attendant assumed the duties of the injured flight attendant. The injured flight attendant told the cockpit crew that he could wait until arrival at Washington to receive medical attention.

The captain had briefed the flight crew prior to departure. According to Continental Airlines procedures, the captain will conduct a crew briefing each day or when there was a crew change. The brief should include:

"...an introduction of crewmembers, departure, en route and destination weather, appropriate open logbook write-ups and other pertinent information the captain considers necessary for the safe conduct of the flight."

There was no specific direction for the flight crew to brief the flight attendants on when they could begin cabin service.

When asked, what specific direction Continental Airlines used to indicate when flight attendants could leave their seats to begin cabin service, the Director of Safety Investigations for Continental Airlines, reported there was no specific written direction. However, he added the usual practice was for flight attendants to use the illumination of the sterile cockpit light as an indication to remain seated, and once the sterile cockpit light was extinguished, it was alright to begin cabin service, unless otherwise instructed.

According to flight recorder data from Continental Airlines, while at 15,000 feet, and an indicated airspeed of 326 knots, the airplane encountered a peak g load of + 2.575, which decreased to + 0.631, and then eventually returned to 1.0 g. The pitch attitude which had been 1.58 degrees nose up, momentarily increased to 1.76 degrees nose up, the decreased to -1.05 degrees down before stabilizing.

According to the weather contained in the flight release for flight 1558, the significant weather portion for eastern Texas included scattered to occasional broken lines of thunderstorms, moving slowly eastward.

The 1800 and 1900 NEXRAD radar returns showed areas of precipitation in the Beaumont area.

A special weather observation, at 1843, from the Beaumont/Port Arthur Airport, Beaumont, Texas, included winds from 200 degrees at 12 knots, with gusts to 20 knots, visibility 6 statue miles, light rain and mist, a few clouds at 900 feet, broken clouds at 2,900 feet, overcast clouds at 3,700 feet, and the rain began at 31 minutes past the hour.
Learning Keywords:Operations - Turbulence
Consequence - Flight Attendant Fatality - Injury
Close match:Turbulence, Report on the accident to Airbus A330-342 B-HYA within the Manila Flight Information Region on 18 July 2003
Accident involving turbulence and Aer Arann ATR-42-300 on descent to Donegal International Airport, Ireland, on December 2, 2001
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 747-443, G-VROM
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 777-236, G-VIIO
Turbulence injuries, Airbus A300B4-605R, G-MONR
Severe turbulence, Boeing 777-236, G-YMME
Turbulence, Boeing 747-436, G-CIVP
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 777-200, N786UA
Turbulence injury, Boeing 777, April 25, 2006
Turbulence injury, Boeing 757-223, June 5, 2005
Turbulence injury, Boeing 737-700, April 29, 2005
Turbulence injury, Boeing 767-232, September 29, 2004
Turbulence injury, Boeing 777, July 25, 2004
Turbulence injury, Airbus A319, July 17, 2004
Turbulence injury, McDonnell Douglas DC-9-82, July 15, 2004
Turbulence injury, Boeing 737-7H4, June 4, 2004
Turbulence injury, McDonnell Douglas DC-9-82, May 26, 2004
Turbulence injury, Boeing 767-300, April 10, 2004
Turbulence injury, Boeing 757-200, March 1, 2004
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 737-500, November 1, 2003
Turbulence injuries, Pan American World Airways, Inc., Boeing 747-121, N739PA, near Nantucket, Massachusetts, November 4, 1970
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
Turbulence injuries, National Airlines, Inc., Boeing 747-135, N77772, Near Lake Charles, Louisiana, January 4, 1972
Turbulence injuries, Air France, Boeing 707-B-328B, F-BLCA, Near O-Neill, Nebraska, May 13, 1974
Turbulence injuries, Air Canada Flight 965, Lockheed L-1011, C-FTNJ, Near Charleston, South Carolina, November 24, 1983
Turbulence injury, Boeing 757-232, September 15, 1993
Turbulence injury, Boeing 747-400, February 12, 1994
Turbulence on descent involving a Boeing 737-790, near Anchroage, Alaska, on November 13, 2000
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 737-400, December 22, 1996
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 727-200, July 28, 2000
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 737-200, April 17, 2001
Turbulence injury, Boeing 757-200, May 29, 2002
Turbulence injury, McDonnell Douglas DC-9-82, November 6, 2002
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 727-200, March 16, 1995
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 737-200, April 28, 1997
Turbulence injuries, McDonnell Douglas DC-9-80, February 8, 1999
Turbulence injury, Boeing 777-223, August 22, 2000
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 757-200, April 18, 2002
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 757-222, April 21, 2003
Turbulence injury, Airbus A319-111, June 2, 2003
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 777-222, June 11, 1999
Turbulence injuries, McDonnell Douglas DC-9-81, August 7, 2003
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 737-201, June 22, 1996
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 767-222, June 20, 1995
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 757, August 4, 1995
Turbulence injury, McDonnell Douglas DC-9-51, January 28, 1997
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 747-422, September 14, 1997
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 767-223, July 22, 1998
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 737-222, May 5, 1999
Turbulence injuries, McDonnell Douglas DC-10-30, March 22, 2002
Turbulence injury, Boeing 757-2B7, May 24, 1998
Turbulence injury, Boeing 737-3H4, June 25, 1999
Turbulence injury, Boeing 757-223, April 7, 1996
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 737-824, July 8, 1999
Turbulence injury, Boeing 757-2G7, January 11, 2000
Turbulence Injury, Boeing 757-2G7, April 2, 2000
Turbulence injury, Airbus A320-232, April 19, 2001
Turbulence injury, Boeing 737-500, August 9, 2001
Turbulence injury, Boeing 747-422, May 1, 2002
Turbulence injury, McDonnell Douglas MD-82, June 12, 2003
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 747-422, October 17, 1995
Turbulence injury, Boeing 747-122, November 1, 1995
Turbulence injury, Boeing 747-422, November 19, 1996
Turbulence injury, December 22, 1996
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 737-242C, March 4, 1998
Turbulence injury, Boeing 737-300, December 13, 1998
Turbulence on descent, Airbus A320-231, September 16, 1999
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 767-332ER, September 20, 2000
Turbulence injury, Boeing 757-2G7, May 28, 2001
Turbulence injury, Airbus A320-232, August 20, 2001
Turbulence on descent, Boeing 777-223, February 25, 2003
Turbulence injury, McDonnell Douglas MD-88, Janaury 6, 1995
Turbulence injury, McDonnell Douglas DC-9-82, October 1, 1997
Turbulence injury, Boeing 767-224, April 22, 2002
Turbulence injury, Boeing 767-300, May 7, 2003
Turbulence injury, Boeing 737-800, August 16, 2003
Turbulence injury, Airbus A300B4-605R, January 7, 1997
Turbulence injury, Boeing 747-200, April 18, 1998
Turbulence injury, Bombardier DHC-8-102, September 27, 1998
Turbulence injury, September 30, 1999
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 767-332ER, November 4, 2000
Turbulence injury, Boeing 737-522, November 25, 1995
Turbulence injury, Boeing 737-2H4, July 7, 1994
Turbulence injury, Boeing 737-291A, June 11, 1997
Tubulence, December 28, 1997, Boeing 747-122, December 28, 1997
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 777-236, G-VIIP, May 14, 2006
Turbulence injuries, Airbus A340-300, D-AIGK, September 18, 1996
Turbulence injuries, Boeing 757-2Q8, N755AT, March 2, 1997
Turbulence injuries, Airbus A340-300, D-AIGK, August 6, 2003

 




Accident Reports on DVD, Copyright © 2006 by Flight Simulation Systems, LLC.  All Rights Reserved.
 All referenced trademarks are the property of their respective owners.
www.fss.aero