NTSB cites pilot actions, lack of wind info in '08 overrun

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NTSB cites pilot actions, lack of wind info in '08 overrun

Unread post by bimjim » Wed Jul 14, 2010

http://atwonline.com/aeropolitics-regul ... =nl_atw_dn

NTSB cites pilot actions, lack of wind information in 2008 overrun accident
By Aaron Karp
July 14, 2010

The probable cause of the 2008 runway overrun of a Continental Airlines 737-500 at Denver International was "the captain's cessation of right rudder input, which was needed to maintain directional control of the airplane, about four seconds before the excursion," the US National Transportation Safety Board concluded yesterday.

The 737-500 en route to Houston Intercontinental veered from Runway 34R while on its takeoff roll, crossed a field and a taxiway, careened down a 40-ft. hill and caught fire after it encountered a "strong and gusty crosswind that exceeded the captain's training and experience," according to NTSB (ATW Daily News, Jan. 7, 2009). The captain and five of the 110 passengers onboard were seriously injured in the accident.

Contributing to the Dec. 20, 2008, accident was an ATC system "that did not require or facilitate the dissemination of key, available wind information to…controllers and pilots," the board said. It added that "inadequate crosswind training" by airlines owing to "deficient simulator wind gust modeling" also was a factor.

NTSB said, "The captain's use of tiller and full right control wheel in the 3 seconds before the excursion likely resulted from acute stress stemming from a sudden, unexpected threat, perceived lack of control, and extreme time pressure."

Among other recommendations, the board asked FAA to gather data on crosswinds at various airports including those like DEN "located downwind from mountainous terrain." It said the agency should use the data to develop "realistic, gusty crosswind profiles" for airports and then establish a standard for "empirically embraced, type-specific maximum gusting crosswind limitations for transport category aircraft." FAA should require manufacturers to assign each aircraft type a maximum crosswind standard, NTSB said, adding that in the meantime manufacturers should provide "interim crosswind takeoff guidelines."

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