Accident Fokker 100 N867US, Thursday 26 February 1998
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Date:Thursday 26 February 1998
Time:17:29
Type:Silhouette image of generic F100 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Fokker 100
Owner/operator:US Airways
Registration: N867US
MSN: 11312
Year of manufacture:1990
Total airframe hrs:17724 hours
Engine model:Rolls-Royce TAY-650-15
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 92
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Substantial, repaired
Category:Accident
Location:Birmingham Airport, AL (BHM) -   United States of America
Phase: Landing
Nature:Passenger - Scheduled
Departure airport:Charlotte-Douglas Airport, NC (CLT/KCLT)
Destination airport:Birmingham Airport, AL (BHM/KBHM)
Investigating agency: NTSB
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Narrative:
A Fokker 100, operated by US Airways as flight 861, experienced loss of directional control while landing at the Birmingham Municipal Airport, Birmingham, Alabama. The airplane was substantially damaged. The flight originated about 16:12, from the Charlotte/Douglas International Airport.
While flying in precipitation deviating within 10 miles from the edge of a level 5 thunderstorm associated with a squall line, the airplane was struck by lightning. Arching damage to the No. 1 elevator pressure and No. 2 elevator return hydraulic lines resulted in depletion of the hydraulic fluid from the Nos. 1 and 2 hydraulic system reservoirs.
The airplane was landed on a wet runway and after touchdown, 2 of the 4 main landing gear tires ruptured. The airplane traveled off the left side of the runway, across grass, and came to rest with the nose landing gear separated. A loose canon plug at the parking brake shutoff valve was discovered which prevented the operation of the alternate antiskid system. That area was inspected 2 days earlier. The airplane was only equipped by design with 1 bonding strap located on the left side of the airplane for the horizontal and vertical stabilizer; which failed.
An Advisory Circular recommends that the area be designated for carrying substantial amounts of electrical current, but the airplane was not designed for such. The flight crew was not provided convective sigmets for the central U.S., which indicated severe thunderstorms over Birmingham. The destination airport was near the boundary of the east and central regions for convective sigmets. The airline does not conduct weather radar training in recurrent, upgrade, or requalification training. The dispatcher did not provide to the flight crew weather watches that were available 15 minutes before and after the flight departed.

PROBABLE CAUSE: "Were the 1) the inoperative alternate anti-skid control valve due to the disconnected electrical connector on the parking brake shut-off valve, the area was inspected 2 days earlier 2) the total loss of the hydraulic system resulting in the inability of the flight crew to maintain directional control. Factors in the accident were the 1) inadequate lightning protection design of the airplane by the manufacturer between the horizontal and vertical stabilizers which resulted in arching damage to hydraulic lines and depletion of the hydraulic fluid from the Nos. 1 and 2 hydraulic systems 2) inadequate weather information disseminated to the flight crew during the preflight briefing by the company dispatcher for failing to provide current up-to-date information of the intensity, and location of adverse weather 3) the failure of the company dispatcher to relay pertinent weather information to the flight crew while en route which included convective sigmets, and the current extent and intensity of the squall line 4) the operation of the airplane by the flight crew within 10 miles from the northern edge of a ground based weather radar depicted level 5 thunderstorm resulting in a lightning strike 5) insufficient standards/requirements, operation/operator by the company management to require weather radar training in recurrent, upgrade, and requalification training, and 6) the limitations of the weather products provided to the flight crew by the airline for failure to include convective sigmets for the central U.S., based on the geographic location of the destination airport being east of the eastern/central boundary."

Accident investigation:
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Investigating agency: NTSB
Report number: MIA98FA089
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 2 years and 11 months
Download report: Final report

Sources:

NTSB

History of this aircraft

Other occurrences involving this aircraft

7 May 1993 N867US USAir 0 Pittsburgh, PA min

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