Manufacturer Repair Failure Causes Air Crash – Episode 123
Covering the “sister” accident to the flight crash discussed in Episode 122, John, Greg and Todd focus on the role played by manufacturers in aviation safety and maintenance. The NTSB findings place the blame for the 1995 crash squarely with the propeller manufacturer and FAA oversight.
Nine of 29 people aboard the Embraer EMB-120RT were killed in the crash of Atlantic Southeast Airlines Flight 529. In-flight loss of the propeller blade led to the collision.
“This crash is the result of the failure of the process, training and management of the manufacturer’s maintenance and repair facility,” John summarizes.
The accident was the first investigation John was onsite for as a NTSB board member. One of the first items he noticed at the crash scene was the propeller crack that was ultimately determined to be the cause.
Greg adds details on findings that are also important to improving aviation safety: better communication between cockpit and cabin, and improvements in the design of the cockpit crash ax.
The episode concludes with an updated report from Todd’s return to flight. Hear what he found in a routine preflight inspection of a rental aircraft that led him to file a Freedom of Information Act request with the FAA.
Date: August 21, 1995
Model: Embraer EMB-120RT
NTSB report (NTSB/AAR-96/06)