Accident ATR 72-212 CU-T1549, Thursday 4 November 2010
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Date:Thursday 4 November 2010
Time:17:51
Type:Silhouette image of generic AT72 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
ATR 72-212
Owner/operator:Aerocaribbean
Registration: CU-T1549
MSN: 459
Year of manufacture:1995
Total airframe hrs:25000 hours
Cycles:34500 flights
Engine model:Pratt & Whitney Canada PW127
Fatalities:Fatalities: 68 / Occupants: 68
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Destroyed, written off
Category:Accident
Location:near Guasimal, Sancti Spiritus Province -   Cuba
Phase: En route
Nature:Passenger - Scheduled
Departure airport:Santiago-Antonio Maceo Airport (SCU/MUCU)
Destination airport:Havana-José Martí International Airport (HAV/MUHA)
Confidence Rating: Information is only available from news, social media or unofficial sources
Narrative:
An ATR-72-212 passenger plane, registration CU-T1549, was destroyed in an accident near Guasimal, Sancti Spiritus Province, Cuba. All 68 on board were killed. The airplane operated on Aerocaribbean Flight 883 from Port-au-Prince Airport (PAP), Haiti to Santiago-Antonio Maceo Airport (SCU), Cuba and Havana-José Martí International Airport (HAV). It took off from Santiago at 16:44 and climbed to a cruising altitude of FL180. At 17:36 the crew contacted Havana Control, requesting permission to climb to FL200.
During the climb the Total Air Temperature (TAT) dropped from +3°C to -1°C. The airspeed dropped from 196 kts to 176 kts.
At 17:44, at FL200, the ICING caution light illuminated on the instrument panel with an associated chime. This was followed by the illumination of the AOA light several seconds later. At 17:46 the crew toggled the anti-icing switches on the overhead panel and contacted Havana Control to request permission to descent to FL160 due to icing.
However, the controller reported conflicting traffic 30 miles ahead. The crew then requested vectors to enable them to descend. Clearance was given to change course from 295° to 330°. At 17:49, with an airspeed of 156 kts, the airplane commenced a right bank. Then suddenly the airplane banked left and right before banking 90° to the left again with a steep nose down attitude. The crew struggled to control the plane, which was banking turning and losing altitude. At 17:51:03 the airplane struck mountainous terrain.
After a six-week investigation, civil aviation officials concluded that "the flight was proceeding normally until it found itself in extreme meteorological conditions that caused the airplane to ice up severely at an altitude of 20,000ft (6,100 m). This, in conjunction with errors by the crew in managing the situation, caused the accident."

Sources:

Cuba says all 68 on board died in plane crash
ATR Statement

Statistics

  • 6th worst accident in 2010
  • worst accident of this aircraft type
  • worst accident of this aircraft type at the time

Location

Images:


photo (c) via Werner Fischdick; Lanzarote Airport (ACE/GCRR); January 2001


photo (c) Merijn Passchier; Lanzarote Airport (ACE/GCRR); September 2003

Revision history:

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