Accident Douglas DC-8-51 N802E, Thursday 30 March 1967
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Date:Thursday 30 March 1967
Type:Silhouette image of generic DC85 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Douglas DC-8-51
Owner/operator:Delta Air Lines
Registration: N802E
MSN: 45409/19
Year of manufacture:1959
Total airframe hrs:23391 hours
Engine model:Pratt & Whitney JT3D-1
Fatalities:Fatalities: 6 / Occupants: 6
Other fatalities:13
Aircraft damage: Destroyed, written off
Location:New Orleans, LA -   United States of America
Phase: Approach
Departure airport:New Orleans International Airport, LA (MSY/KMSY)
Destination airport:New Orleans International Airport, LA (MSY/KMSY)
Investigating agency: NTSB
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Delta Air Lines DC-8-51 N802E was scheduled as Flight 9877, to provide crew training for a captain-trainee and a flight engineer-trainee. In addition the flight engineer-instructor was being given a routine proficiency check.
At 23:14 a weather briefing was given to the instructor pilot, indicating, "... the only significant weather was a restriction in visibility which was expected to reduce to about two miles in fog and smoke near 0600...".
The flight departed the ramp at 00:40 with the captain-trainee in the left seat and the check captain in the right seat. At 00:43 the crew advised the tower they were ready for takeoff and would " to circle and land on one (runway 1)." The tower controller then cleared them as requested. The aircraft was observed to make what appeared to be a normal takeoff and departure. At 00:47 the crew reported on base leg for runway 1, and the controller cleared the flight to land. A subsequent discussion revealed that they would execute a simulated two-engine out approach, execute a full stop landing and then takeoff on runway 19.
The tower controller observed Flight 9877 in a shallow left turn on what appeared to be a normal final approach. The degree of bank increased to approximately 60 degrees or greater when the aircraft hit the power lines approximately 2,300 feet short and 1,100 feet west of the runway threshold. The DC-8 crashed into a residential area, destroying several homes and a motel complex.

PROBABLE CAUSE: "Improper supervision by the instructor, and the improper use of flight and power controls by both instructor and the Captain-trainee during a simulated two-engine out landing approach, which resulted in a loss of control."

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: NTSB
Report number: DCA67A0007
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 11 months
Download report: Final report



  • 36th worst accident in 1967
  • 7th worst accident of this aircraft type
  • 3rd worst accident of this aircraft type at the time



photo (c) Suzann Holland; New Orleans, LA; 30 March 1967

Revision history:


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