Crash of a McDonnell Douglas MD-82 in Madrid, Spain: 154 killed

Date & Time: Aug 20, 2008 at 1424 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
EC-HFP
Flight Phase:
Survivors:
Yes
Schedule:
Madrid - Las Palmas
MSN:
53148/2072
YOM:
1993
Flight number:
JKK5022
Location:
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
6
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
166
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
154
Captain / Total flying hours:
8476
Captain / Total hours on type:
5776.00
Copilot / Total flying hours:
1276
Copilot / Total hours on type:
1054
Aircraft flight hours:
31963
Aircraft flight cycles:
28133
Circumstances:
Shortly after rotation from runway 36L, stick shaker activated while the stall warning sounded. Aircraft stalled and crashed. It was completely destroyed by impact forces and post impact fire. 154 people were killed. Worst accident in Europe since December 1988.
Probable cause:
The crew lost control of the airplane as a consequence of entering a stall immediately after takeoff due to an improper airplane configuration involving the non-deployment of the slats/flaps following a series of mistakes and omissions, along with the absence of the improper takeoff configuration warning.
The crew did not identify the stall warnings and did not correct said situation after takeoff. They momentarily retarded the engine throttles, increased the pitch angle and did not correct the bank angle, leading to a deterioration of the stall condition.
The crew did not detect the configuration error because they did not properly use the checklists, which contain items to select and verify the position of the flaps/slats, when preparing the flight. Specifically:
- They did not carry out the action to select the flaps/slats with the associated control lever (in the "After Start" checklist);
- They did not cross check the position of the lever or the status of the flap and slat indicating lights when executing the" After Start" checklist;
- They omitted the check of the flaps and slats during the "Takeoff briefing" item on the "Taxi" checklist;
- The visual check done when executing the "Final items" on the "Takeoff imminent" checklist was not a real check of the position of the flaps and slats, as displayed on the instruments in the cockpit.
The CIAIAC has identified the following contributing factors:
- The absence of an improper takeoff configuration warning resulting from the failure of the TOWS to operate, which thus did not warn the crew that the airplane's takeoff configuration was not appropriate. The reason for the failure of the TOWS to function could not be reliably established.
- Improper crew resource management (CRM), which did not prevent the deviation from procedures in the presence of unscheduled interruptions to flight preparations.
Final Report:

Crash of a Beechcraft Super King Air 200 in Banjul: 9 killed

Date & Time: Oct 10, 1997 at 0252 LT
Operator:
Registration:
EC-ERQ
Survivors:
Yes
Schedule:
Las Palmas-Banjul
MSN:
BB-0218
YOM:
1977
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
2
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
8
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
9

Crash of a Dassault Falcon 20DC in Las Palmas

Date & Time: Sep 30, 1987 at 0721 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
EC-ECB
Flight Type:
Survivors:
Yes
Schedule:
Madrid - Las Palmas
MSN:
210
YOM:
1970
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
2
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
0
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
0
Captain / Total flying hours:
1515
Circumstances:
During the last segment, the aircraft was unstable and upon touchdown, it went out of control. It veered off runway to the left and came to rest. Both crew members escaped uninjured while the aircraft was damaged beyond repair.

Crash of a Lockheed C-130H Hercules near Las Palmas: 10 killed

Date & Time: May 28, 1980 at 1025 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
T.10-1
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Site:
Schedule:
Madrid – Tenerife – Las Palmas
MSN:
4520
YOM:
1973
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
5
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
5
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
10
Circumstances:
The crew was completing a flight from Tenerife to Las Palmas where 70 soldiers should embark. The descent to Gando Airport was initiated from the west in marginal weather conditions. In limited visibility due to clouds, the four engine airplane struck the slope of Mt Hoya del Gamonal located about 17 km northwest of the airport. The aircraft was destroyed and all 10 occupants were killed. For unknown reasons, the crew initiated the approach from the west over the island instead of flying along the northern coast of the island.
Probable cause:
Controlled flight into terrain.

Crash of a Boeing 747-121 in Tenerife: 335 killed

Date & Time: Mar 27, 1977 at 1706 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
N736PA
Flight Phase:
Survivors:
Yes
Schedule:
Los Angeles – New York – Las Palmas
MSN:
19643
YOM:
1969
Flight number:
PA1736
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
16
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
380
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
335
Captain / Total flying hours:
21043
Captain / Total hours on type:
564.00
Copilot / Total flying hours:
10800
Copilot / Total hours on type:
2796
Aircraft flight hours:
25725
Aircraft flight cycles:
7195
Circumstances:
The KLM Boeing 747, registration PH-BUF, took off from Schipol Airport (Amsterdam) at 0900 hours on 27 March 1977, en route to Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. This flight was part of the Charter Series KL4805/4806 Amsterdam-Las Palmas (Canary Islands) - Amsterdam operated by KLM on behalf of the Holland International Travel Group (H.I.N.T.), Rijswijk-Z.H. The Boeing 747 registration N736PA, flight number 1736, left Los Angeles International Airport, California, United States, on 26 March 1977, local date, at 0129Z hours, arriving at John F. Kennedy International Airport at 0617Z hours. After the aeroplane was refuelled and a crew change effected, it took off for Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (Spain) at 0742Z. While the aeroplanes were en route to Las Palmas, a bomb exploded in the airport passenger terminal. On account of this incident and of a warning regarding a possible second bomb, the airport was closed. Therefore, KLM 4805 was diverted to Los Rodeos (Tenerife) Airport, arriving at 1338Z on 27 March 1977. For the same reason, PAA1736 proceeded to the same airport, which was its alternate, landing at 1415. At first the KLM passengers were not allowed to leave the aeroplane, but after about twenty minutes they were all transported to the terminal building by bus. On alighting from the bus, they received cards identifying them as passengers in transit on Flight KL 4805. Later, all the passengers boarded KLM 4805 expect the H.I.N.T. Company guide, who remained in Tenerife. When Las Palmas Airport was opened to traffic once more, the PAA 1736 crew prepared to proceed to Las Palmas, which was the flight's planned destination. When they attempted to taxi on the taxiway leading to runway 12, where they had been parked with four other aeroplanes on account of the congestion caused by the number of flights diverted to Tenerife, they discovered that it was blocked by KLM Boeing 747, Flight 4805, which was located between PAA 1736 and the entrance to the active runway. The first officer and the flight engineer left the aeroplane and measured the clearance left by the KLM aircraft, reaching the conclusion that it was insufficient to allow PAA 1736 to pass by, obliging them to writ until the former had started to taxi. The passengers of PAA 1736 did not leave the aeroplane during the whole time that it remained in the airport. KLM 4805 called the tower at 1656 requesting permission to taxi. It was authorized to do so and at 1658 requested to backtrack on runway 12 for take-off on runway 30. The tower controller first cleared the KLM flight to taxi to the holding position for runway 30 by taxiing down the main runway and leaving it by the (third) taxiway to its left. KLM 4805 acknowledged receipt of this message from the tower, stating that it was at that moment taxiing on the runway, which it would leave by the first taxiway in order to proceed to the approach end of runway 30. The tower controller immediately issued an amended clearance, instructing it to continue to taxi to the end of the runway, where it should proceed to backtrack. The KLM flight confirmed that it had received the message, that it would backtrack, and that it was taxiing down tile main runway. The tower signalled its approval, whereupon KLM 4805 immediately asked the tower again if what they had asked it to do was to turn left on taxiway one. The tower replied in the negative and repeated that it should continue on to the end of the runway and there backtrack. Finally, at 1659, KLM 4805 replied, "O.K., sir." At 1702, the PAA aeroplane called the tower to request confirmation that it should taxi down the runway. The tower controller confirmed this, also adding that they should leave the runway by the third taxiway to their left. At 1703:00, in reply to the tower controller's query to KLM 4805 as to how many runway exits they had passed, the latter confirmed that at that moment they were passing by taxiway C4. The tower controller told KLM 4805, "O.K., at the end of the runway make one eighty and report ready for ATC clearance ." In response to a query from KLM 4805, the tower controller advised both aeroplanes - KLM 4805 and PAA 1736 - that the runway centre line lights were out of service. The controller also reiterated to PAA 1736 that they were to leave the main runway via the third taxiway to their left and that they should report leaving the runway. At the times indicated, the following conversations took place between the tower and the KLM 4805 and PAA 1736 aeroplanes. Times taken from KLM CVR.
1705:44.6 KLM 4805: The KLM four eight zero five is now ready for take-off and we are waiting for our ATC clearance. (1705:50.77).
1705:53.41 Tower: KLM eight seven zero five you are cleared to the Papa Beacon, climb to and maintain flight level nine zero, right turn after take-off, proceed with heading four zero until intercepting the three two five radial from Las Palmas VOR. (1706 :08.09).
1706:09.61 KLM 4805: Ah - Roger, sir, we are cleared to the Papa Beacon, flight level nine zero until intercepting the three two five. We are now (at take-off). (1706:17.79).
1706:18.19 Tower : O.K..... Stand by for take-off, I will call you. (1706: 21.79).
Note: A squeal starts at: 1706:19.39 The squeal ends at: 1706:22.06
1706:21.92 PAA 1736: Clipper one seven three six. (1706 : 23.39).
1706:25.47 Tower: Ah - Papa Alpha one seven three six report the runway clear. (1706: 28.89).
1706:29.59 PAA 1736: O.K., will report when we're clear. (1706:30.69).
1706:31.69 Tower: Thank you.
Subsequently, KLM 4805, which had released its brakes to start take-off run 20 seconds before this communication took place, collided with the PAA aeroplane. The control tower received no further communications from PAA 1736, nor from KLM 4805. There were no eyewitnesses to the collision. All 248 occupants on board the KLM 747 were killed. Among the 396 people on board the Pan Am 747, 335 were killed (among them nine crew members) and 61 others were injured.
Probable cause:
The KLM aircraft had taken off without take-off clearance, in the absolute conviction that this clearance had been obtained, which was the result of a misunderstanding between the tower and the KLM aircraft. This misunderstanding had arisen from the mutual use of usual terminology which, however, gave rise to misinterpretation. In combination with a number of other coinciding circumstances, the premature take-off of the KLM aircraft resulted in a collision with the Pan Am aircraft, because the latter was still on the runway since it had missed the correct intersection.
Final Report:

Crash of a Boeing 747-206B in Tenerife: 248 killed

Date & Time: Mar 27, 1977 at 1706 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
PH-BUF
Flight Phase:
Survivors:
No
Schedule:
Tenerife - Las Palmas
MSN:
20400
YOM:
1971
Flight number:
KL4805
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
14
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
234
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
248
Captain / Total flying hours:
11700
Captain / Total hours on type:
1545.00
Copilot / Total flying hours:
9200
Copilot / Total hours on type:
95
Aircraft flight hours:
21195
Aircraft flight cycles:
5202
Circumstances:
The KLM Boeing 747, registration PH-BUF, took off from Schipol Airport (Amsterdam) at 0900 hours on 27 March 1977, en route to Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. This flight was part of the Charter Series KL4805/4806 Amsterdam-Las Palmas (Canary Islands) - Amsterdam operated by KLM on behalf of the Holland International Travel Group (H.I.N.T.), Rijswijk-Z.H. The Boeing 747 registration N736PA, flight number 1736, left Los Angeles International Airport, California, United States, on 26 March 1977, local date, at 0129Z hours, arriving at John F. Kennedy International Airport at 0617Z hours. After the aeroplane was refuelled and a crew change effected, it took off for Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (Spain) at 0742Z. While the aeroplanes were en route to Las Palmas, a bomb exploded in the airport passenger terminal. On account of this incident and of a warning regarding a possible second bomb, the airport was closed. Therefore, KLM 4805 was diverted to Los Rodeos (Tenerife) Airport, arriving at 1338Z on 27 March 1977. For the same reason, PAA1736 proceeded to the same airport, which was its alternate, landing at 1415. At first the KLM passengers were not allowed to leave the aeroplane, but after about twenty minutes they were all transported to the terminal building by bus. On alighting from the bus, they received cards identifying them as passengers in transit on Flight KL 4805. Later, all the passengers boarded KLM 4805 expect the H.I.N.T. Company guide, who remained in Tenerife. When Las Palmas Airport was opened to traffic once more, the PAA 1736 crew prepared to proceed to Las Palmas, which was the flight's planned destination. When they attempted to taxi on the taxiway leading to runway 12, where they had been parked with four other aeroplanes on account of the congestion caused by the number of flights diverted to Tenerife, they discovered that it was blocked by KLM Boeing 747, Flight 4805, which was located between PAA 1736 and the entrance to the active runway. The first officer and the flight engineer left the aeroplane and measured the clearance left by the KLM aircraft, reaching the conclusion that it was insufficient to allow PAA 1736 to pass by, obliging them to writ until the former had started to taxi. The passengers of PAA 1736 did not leave the aeroplane during the whole time that it remained in the airport. KLM 4805 called the tower at 1656 requesting permission to taxi. It was authorized to do so and at 1658 requested to backtrack on runway 12 for take-off on runway 30. The tower controller first cleared the KLM flight to taxi to the holding position for runway 30 by taxiing down the main runway and leaving it by the (third) taxiway to its left. KLM 4805 acknowledged receipt of this message from the tower, stating that it was at that moment taxiing on the runway, which it would leave by the first taxiway in order to proceed to the approach end of runway 30. The tower controller immediately issued an amended clearance, instructing it to continue to taxi to the end of the runway, where it should proceed to backtrack. The KLM flight confirmed that it had received the message, that it would backtrack, and that it was taxiing down tile main runway. The tower signalled its approval, whereupon KLM 4805 immediately asked the tower again if what they had asked it to do was to turn left on taxiway one. The tower replied in the negative and repeated that it should continue on to the end of the runway and there backtrack. Finally, at 1659, KLM 4805 replied, "O.K., sir." At 1702, the PAA aeroplane called the tower to request confirmation that it should taxi down the runway. The tower controller confirmed this, also adding that they should leave the runway by the third taxiway to their left. At 1703:00, in reply to the tower controller's query to KLM 4805 as to how many runway exits they had passed, the latter confirmed that at that moment they were passing by taxiway C4. The tower controller told KLM 4805, "O.K., at the end of the runway make one eighty and report ready for ATC clearance ." In response to a query from KLM 4805, the tower controller advised both aeroplanes - KLM 4805 and PAA 1736 - that the runway centre line lights were out of service. The controller also reiterated to PAA 1736 that they were to leave the main runway via the third taxiway to their left and that they should report leaving the runway. At the times indicated, the following conversations took place between the tower and the KLM 4805 and PAA 1736 aeroplanes. Times taken from KLM CVR.
1705:44.6 KLM 4805: The KLM four eight zero five is now ready for take-off and we are waiting for our ATC clearance. (1705:50.77).
1705:53.41 Tower: KLM eight seven zero five you are cleared to the Papa Beacon, climb to and maintain flight level nine zero, right turn after take-off, proceed with heading four zero until intercepting the three two five radial from Las Palmas VOR. (1706 :08.09).
1706:09.61 KLM 4805: Ah - Roger, sir, we are cleared to the Papa Beacon, flight level nine zero until intercepting the three two five. We are now (at take-off). (1706:17.79).
1706:18.19 Tower : O.K..... Stand by for take-off, I will call you. (1706: 21.79).
Note: A squeal starts at: 1706:19.39 The squeal ends at: 1706:22.06
1706:21.92 PAA 1736: Clipper one seven three six. (1706 : 23.39).
1706:25.47 Tower: Ah - Papa Alpha one seven three six report the runway clear. (1706: 28.89).
1706:29.59 PAA 1736: O.K., will report when we're clear. (1706:30.69).
1706:31.69 Tower: Thank you.
Subsequently, KLM 4805, which had released its brakes to start take-off run 20 seconds before this communication took place, collided with the PAA aeroplane. The control tower received no further communications from PAA 1736, nor from KLM 4805. There were no eyewitnesses to the collision. All 248 occupants on board the KLM 747 were killed. Among the 396 people on board the Pan Am 747, 335 were killed (among them nine crew members) and 61 others were injured.
Probable cause:
The KLM aircraft had taken off without take-off clearance, in the absolute conviction that this clearance had been obtained, which was the result of a misunderstanding between the tower and the KLM aircraft. This misunderstanding had arisen from the mutual use of usual terminology which, however, gave rise to misinterpretation. In combination with a number of other coinciding circumstances, the premature take-off of the KLM aircraft resulted in a collision with the Pan Am aircraft, because the latter was still on the runway since it had missed the correct intersection.
Final Report:

Crash of a Douglas C-54E-15-DO Skymaster in Vejer de la Frontera: 12 killed

Date & Time: Aug 9, 1976 at 1230 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
T.4-11
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
Yes
Schedule:
Getafe - Las Palmas
MSN:
27344
YOM:
1944
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
4
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
28
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
12
Circumstances:
The four engine airplane was completing a flight from Getafe Airbase in Madrid and Las Palmas-Gando Airport, carrying officers of the Spanish Army and family members. En route, an engine caught fire and the captain reduced his altitude in an attempt to make an emergency landing when the airplane struck trees and crashed in flames in a wooded area located in Vejer de la Frontera. 12 occupants were killed while 20 others were injured.
Probable cause:
An engine caught fire in flight.

Crash of a Grumman SA-16A Albatross near Las Palmas

Date & Time: Sep 3, 1973 at 0730 LT
Operator:
Registration:
AD.1-5
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
Yes
Schedule:
Las Palmas – Jerez de la Frontera
MSN:
G-56
YOM:
1951
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
6
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
0
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
0
Circumstances:
The seaplane departed Las Palmas-Gando Airport at 0655LT bound for Jerez de la Frontera. Few minutes later, the crew informed ATC about an engine failure and was eventually forced to attempt an emergency landing. The aircraft crash landed in a rocky field and was damaged beyond repair. A crew member was slightly injured.
Probable cause:
Engine failure.

Crash of a Douglas DC-8-52 off Las Palmas: 10 killed

Date & Time: Jul 6, 1972 at 0200 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
EC-ARA
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Schedule:
Madrid - Las Palmas
MSN:
45617
YOM:
1961
Flight number:
AO331
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
10
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
0
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
10
Circumstances:
The crew was completing a positioning flight from Madrid-Barajas Airport to Las Palmas to pick up German tourists back to Hamburg. While on a night approach to Las Palmas-Gando Airport, the airplane crashed in unknown circumstances into the sea some 22 km east of Arinaga. Few debris were found floating on water and none of the 10 occupants survived the crash. The wreckage sank by a depth of 1,560 meters.
Probable cause:
The exact cause of the accident remains determined.

Crash of a Douglas C-47B-10-DK off Las Palmas: 3 killed

Date & Time: Jun 30, 1971 at 1815 LT
Operator:
Registration:
T.3-37
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
Yes
Schedule:
Las Palmas - Al Aaiun
MSN:
14734/26179
YOM:
1944
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
5
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
0
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
3
Circumstances:
Shortly after takeoff from Las Palmas-Gando Airport, the airplane encountered difficulties to gain height, stalled and crashed into the sea. Three crew members were killed and two others were injured. There were high crosswinds at the time of the accident.