World Airways Flight 30 CVR Recording (With subtitles)

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Accident Description:

𝗪𝗼𝗿𝗹𝗱 𝗔𝗶𝗿𝘄𝗮𝘆𝘀 𝗙𝗹𝗶𝗴𝗵𝘁 𝟯𝟬 was a scheduled domestic passenger flight from Oakland to Boston with an intermediate stop in Newark. The flight was being operated by a McDonnell Douglas DC-10 (Reg. N113WA) on 𝗝𝗮𝗻𝘂𝗮𝗿𝘆 𝟮𝟯, 𝟭𝟵𝟴𝟮.

Following a non-precision instrument approach to runway 15R at Boston Logan International Airport, the plane touched down about 2,800 feet beyond the displaced threshold of the 9,191-foot usable part of the runway. About 19:36:40, the plane veered to avoid the approach light pier at the departure end of the runway and slid into the shallow water of Boston Harbor. The nose section separated from the fuselage in the impact after the plane dropped from the shore embankment. Of the 212 persons on board, 2 persons are missing and presumed dead. The other persons onboard evacuated the plane safely, some with injuries.

The weather was 800-foot overcast, 2½ miles visibility, with light rain and fog. The temperature was 38° with the wind from 165° at 3 knots. The surface of the runway 15R was covered with hard-packed snow and glaze ice overlaid with rainwater. Runway braking was reported by a ground vehicle 2 hours before the accident as “fair to poor”, subsequently, several pilots had reported braking as “poor”, and one pilot had reported braking as “poor to nil.”

𝗣𝗿𝗼𝗯𝗮𝗯𝗹𝗲 𝗖𝗮𝘂𝘀𝗲:
“The minimal braking effectiveness on the ice-covered runway; the failure of the Boston-Logan International Airport management to exercise maximum efforts to assess the condition of the runway to assure continued safety of landing operations; the failure of air traffic control to transmit the most recent pilot reports of braking action to the pilot of Flight 30H; and the captain’s decision to accept and maintain an excessive airspeed derived from the auto throttle speed control system during the landing approach which caused the aircraft to land about 2,800 feet beyond the runway’s displaced threshold.
Contributing to the accident were the inadequacy of the present system of reports to convey reliable braking effectiveness information and the absence of provisions in the Federal Aviation Regulations to require: (1) airport management to measure the slipperiness of the runways using standardised procedures and to use standardised criteria in evaluating and reporting braking effectiveness and in making decisions to close runways. (2) operators to provide flight crews and other personnel with information necessary to correlate braking effectiveness on contaminated runways with aircraft stopping distances, and (3) extended minimum runway lengths for landing on runways which adequately take into consideration the reduction of braking effectiveness due to ice and snow.”

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