Event Details

Title:Loss of control, Trans International Airlines Corp., Ferry Flight 863, Douglas DC-8-63F, N4863T, J. F. Kennedy International Airport, New York, September 8, 1970
Micro summary:Following a high rotation angle, this Douglas DC-8-63F rolled over and crashed.
Event Time:1970-09-08 at 1606 EDT
File Name:1970-09-08-2-US.pdf
Publishing Agency:National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB)
Publishing Country:USA
Report number:NTSB-AAR-71-12
Site of event:JFK
Latitude/Longitude:N4039'N W07347'
Departure:John F. Kennedy International Airport, Jamaica, New York, USA
Destination:Washington Dulles International Airport, Washington DC, USA
Airplane Type(s):Douglas DC-8-63F
Flight Phase:Takeoff
Operator(s):Trans International Airlines
Type of flight:Revenue
Serious Injuries:0
Other Injuries:0
Executive Summary:A Trans International Airlines Douglas DC-8-63F, K4863T, Ferry Flight 863 crashed during takeoff a t John F. Kennedy International Airport, New York, at 1606, September 8, 1970.

Approximately 1,500 feet from the initiation of the takeoff roll , the aircraft was observed rotating to an excessively nose-high attitude. The aircraft became airborne about 2,800 feet down the runway after which it continued to rotate slowly upward to an attitude estimated to be between 60' and 90' above the horizontal, at an altitude estimated to be between 300 to 500 feet above the ground. The aircraft rolled about 20' to the right , rolled back to the left until it reached approximately a vertical angle of bank, and then fell to the ground in that attitude. The aircraft was destroyed by impact and postimpact fire. All 11 crewmembers, the only occupants of the aircraft, died in the accident.

The Board determines that the probable cause of this accident was a loss of pitch control caused by the entrapment of a pointed, asphalt-covered object between the leading edge of the right elevator and the right horizontal spar web access door in the aft part of the stabilizer. The restriction to elevator movement, caused by a highly unusual and unknown condition, was not detected by the crew in time to reject the takeoff successfully. However, an apparent lack of crew responsiveness to a highly unusual emergency situation, coupled with the captain's failure to monitor adequately the takeoff, contributed to the failure to reject the takeoff.

The Board has recommended to the Federal Aviation Administration that all DC-8 operators be advised of the circumstances of this accident; that takeoffs in DC-8's should be rejected when premature or unacceptable rotation of the aircraft occurs during takeoff; and that provisions for the detection of jammed elevators and determination of elevator position be provided to DC-8 crews.

The FAA replied that engineering evaluations are being completed and they will advise the Board of the results. The FAA also requested further data regarding the recommendation that takeoffs should be aborted when premature or unwanted rotation was experienced in the DC-8.

The Board also recommends that a review should be conducted on the subject of rejected takeoff procedures in air carrier operation with a view to amplifying, clarifying, and standardizing each pilot's role in that procedure. More specific information regarding the dynamics of rejected takeoffs and pre-takeoff briefings should also be considered.
Learning Keywords:Systems - Elevator, Stabilizer, Rudder, Ailerons
Consequence - Hull Loss
Close match:Loss of Control and Impact with Pacific Ocean, Alaska, Airlines Flight 261, McDonnell Douglas MD-83, N963AS, About 2.7 Miles North of Anacapa Island, California, January 31, 2000


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