Event Details

Title:Runway overrun, Continental Air Lines, Inc., McDonnell-Douglas DC-10-10, N68045, Los Angeles, California, March 1, 1978
Micro summary:Following a rejected takeoff, this DC-10 overran the runway.
Event Time:1978-03-01 at 0925 PST
File Name:1978-03-01-US.pdf
Publishing Agency:National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB)
Publishing Country:USA
Report number:NTSB-AAR-1979-01
Site of event:LAX runway 6R; slid 664 feet rom departure end of runway.
Latitude/Longitude:N3356'30" W11824'24"
Departure:Los Angeles International Airport, Los Angeles, California, USA
Destination:Honolulu International Airport, Honolulu, Hawaii, USA
Airplane Type(s):McDonnell Douglas DC-10-10
Flight Phase:Takeoff
Operator(s):Continental Airlines
Type of flight:Revenue
Serious Injuries:31
Other Injuries:0
Executive Summary:About 0925 Pacific standard time on March 1, 1978, Continental Air Lines, Inc., Flight 603 overran the departure end of runway 6R at Los Angeles International Airport, California, following a rejected takeoff. The takeoff was rejected just before the aircraft attained a V1 speed of 156 knots, because the flightcrew heard a loud "metallic bang" and the aircraft started to "quiver." As the aircraft departed the wet, load-bearing surface of the runway, the left main landing gear collapsed and fire erupted from the left wing area. The aircraft slid to a stop about 664 feet from the departure end of the runway. The left side of the aircraft was destroyed. Of the 184 passengers, 2 infants, and 14 crewmenbers aboard, 2 passengers were killed and 28 passengers and 3 crewmembers were seriously injured during the evacuation of the aircraft.

The National Transportation Safety Board determined that the probable cause of the accident was the sequential failure of two tires on the left main landing gear and the resultant failure of another tire on the same landing gear at a critical time during the takeoff roll. These failures resulted in the captain's decision to reject the takeoff.

Contributing to the accident was the cumulative effect of the partial loss of aircraft braking because of the failed tires and the reduced braking friction achievable on the wet runway surface which increased the accelerate-stop distance to a value greater than the available runway length. These factors prevented the captain from stopping the aircraft within the runway confines.

The failure of the left main landing gear and the consequent rupture of the left wing fuel tanks resulted in an intense fire which added to the severity of the accident.
Learning Keywords:Operations - Bang, pop, crack, sizzle!
Operations - Braking Issues (General)
Operations - Evacuation
Operations - Rejected Takeoff before V1
Operations - Runway Excursion
Operations - Slippery Runway, Taxiway, Apron
Operations - Upset - Uncommanded or excessive Yaw
Systems - Landing Gear
Systems - Landing Gear - Tires
Consequence - Hull Loss


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