Event Details

Title:In-flight turbulence encounter and loss of portions of the elevators, China Airlines Flight CI-012, McDonnell Douglas MD-11-P, Taiwan registration B-150, About 20 miles east of Japan, December 7, 1992 (Recommended)
Micro summary:Following an encounter with turbulence, this MD-11 experienced an in-flight upset.
Event Time:1992-12-07 at 1036 UTC
File Name:1992-12-07-US.pdf
Publishing Agency:National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB)
Publishing Country:USA
Report number:NTSB-AAR-94-02
Site of event:20 miles east of Japan
Latitude/Longitude:N3255'28" E13341'58"
Departure:Taipei Chiang Kai Shek International Airport, Taiwan
Destination:Anchorage International Airport, Anchorage, Alaska, USA
Airplane Type(s):McDonnell Douglas MD-11
Flight Phase:Cruise
Operator(s):China Airlines
Type of flight:Revenue
Serious Injuries:0
Other Injuries:0
Executive Summary:On December 7, 1992, about 1036 Coordinated Universal Time, a McDonnell Douglas MD-11, Taiwan registration B-150, China Airlines, flight CI-012, encountered moderate turbulence at flight level 330. The airplane subsequently departed controlled flight and sustained damage to the left and right outboard elevator skin assemblies, portions of which separated from the airplane. The airplane was operating under the provisions of Title 14, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 129, as a scheduled passenger flight from Taipei, Taiwan, to Anchorage, Alaska. There were 246 passengers, 3 flightcrew members, 2 additional crewmembers, and 14 cabincrew members on board, none of whom reported any injuries. The airplane continued on and landed uneventfully at Anchorage, Alaska.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of this incident was the light control force characteristics of the MD-11 airplane in high altitude cruise flight. The upset was induced by a moderate lateral gust and was exacerbated by excessive control deflections. Contributing to the incident was a lack of pilot training specific to the recovery from high altitude, high speed upsets in the MD-11.

Safety issues discussed in the report include the design and certification of the MD-11 airplane. Safety recommendations concerning these issues were made to the Federal Aviation Administration. Also, on November 10, 1993, the Safety Board issued several safety recommendations concerning the MD- 11 that were relevant to this incident.
Learning Keywords:Operations - Training Deficiency
Operations - Upset in-flight (extreme attitudes, stall, spin)
Other - Certification
Consequence - Damage - Airframe or fuselage


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