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TWA Flight 800
Boeing 707-331, Trans World Airlines - TWA AN0575882.jpg
A TWA Boeing 707-331 similar to the aircraft involved in the accident
Occurrence summary
Date 23 November 1964
Summary Engine failure
Site Leonardo da Vinci-Fiumicino Airport, Rome, Italy
41°48′10″N 12°14′15″E / 41.80278°N 12.23750°E / 41.80278; 12.23750Coordinates: 41°48′10″N 12°14′15″E / 41.80278°N 12.23750°E / 41.80278; 12.23750
Passengers 62
Crew 11
Injuries (non-fatal) 23
Fatalities 50
Survivors 23
Aircraft type Boeing 707-331
Operator Trans World Airlines
Registration N769TW
Flight origin Fiumicino – Leonardo da Vinci International Airport, Rome, Italy
Destination Ellinikon International Airport, Athens, Greece

TWA Flight 800 was a Boeing 707 that crashed during take off on runway 25 at Leonardo da Vinci-Fiumicino Airport, Rome at 13:05 GMT on a flight to Athens International Airport, Greece on 23 November 1964. As the Boeing 707 was at 80 knots, the instruments for No. 4 engine indicated zero thrust and the thrust reverser deployment light for No. 2 engine illuminated. The crew aborted the takeoff at a speed below V1 at 800-900m down the runway. The aircraft did not slow down as quickly as the crew expected and veered to the right, whereupon No. 4 engine struck a pavement roller. The aircraft caught fire and traveled another 260m before coming to rest. The accident killed 50 passengers and crew on board, with 23 passengers and crew surviving.

Cause[edit]

The cause of the accident was an inoperative No. 2 engine reverse thrust system, even though indications in the cockpit were that the reverser had deployed. This was caused by the disconnection of a duct with resulting lack of pressure in the pneumatic clamshell door actuating mechanism. This malfunction allowed the development of considerable forward thrust by No. 2 engine even though the thrust levers for all four engines were in the "reverse" position.

More information about this accident can be found in a book published in 1967, called Airline Safety is a Myth. It was written by the captain of this aircraft, Vernon William Lowell. He survived the accident and went on to become a passionate advocate for improved safety in airline travel.

References[edit]

1. Aviation Safety Network Accident Summary [1]


Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TWA_Flight_800_(1964) — Please support Wikipedia.
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