Event Details

Title:Runway excursion, USAir Inc., Flight 183, McDonnell Douglas DC9-31, N964VJ, Detroit Metropolitan Airport,Detroit, Michigan, June 13, 1984
Micro summary:This Douglas DC-9-31 landed late and slid off the runway during a landing in foul weather.
Event Time:1984-06-13 at 2056 EDT
File Name:1984-06-13-US.pdf
Publishing Agency:National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB)
Publishing Country:USA
Report number:NTSB/AAR-85/01
Site of event:Landing, RWY 21R, Detroit Metropolitan Airport
Departure:Bradley International Airport, Windsor Locks, Connecticut, USA
Destination:Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport, Romulus, Michigan, USA
Airplane Type(s):Douglas DC-9-31
Flight Phase:Landing
Type of flight:Revenue
Serious Injuries:10
Other Injuries:0
Executive Summary:On June 13, 1984, USAir, Inc., Flight 183, a McDonnell Douglas DC9-31, N964VJ, with 5 crewmembers and 51 passengers aboard, encountered turbulence, hail, and heavy rain as it was making an instrument landing system approach to runway 21R at the Detroit Metropolitan Airport, Detroit, Michigan. The captain lost sight of the approach light system and started a missed approach. The airplane would not climb, according to the captain, and flew through the thunderstorm between 100 and 200 feet above the ground. As the airplane flew out of the rain and hail shaft, the captain saw the runway. He believed that ground contact was imminent, so he ordered the first officer to extend the landing gear as he reduced engine thrust and attempted to land the airplane. The airplane landed on the runway about 2,500 feet beyond the threshold of runway 21R before the landing gear was extended fully. The airplane skidded about 3,800 feet before sliding into the grass on the left side of the runway. The crew and passengers were evacuated with only minor injuries. The airplane was damaged substantially.

The weather at the time of the accident was, in part, ceiling 3,000 feet broken, visibility 1/4 mile, thunderstorm with heavy rain showers and 3/4-inch hail, wind 300 degrees at 20 knots gusting to 32 knots. The Low Level Wind Shear Alert System had indicated wind shear alerts in three of the airport quadrants.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of the accident was inadequate cockpit coordination and management which resulted in the captain's inappropriate decision to continue the instrument approach into known thunderstorm activity where the airplane encountered severe wind shear. The failure of air traffic control personnel at the airport to provide additional available weather information deprived the flightcrew of information which may have enhanced their decision-making process.
Learning Keywords:Operations - Crew Resource Management
Operations - Runway Excursion
Operations - Slippery Runway, Taxiway, Apron
Operations - Unstabilized Approach
Operations - Windshear or Microburst
Consequence - Hull Loss


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