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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation A-76-035
Details
Synopsis: ON JUNE 24, 1975, EASTERN AIR LINES FLIGHT 66, A BOEING 727, CRASHED DURING A PRECISION INSTRUMENT APPROACH TO THE JOHN F. KENNEDY INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, JAMAICA, NEW YORK. ONE HUNDRED AND THIRTEEN PERSONS DIED FROM THE INJURIES THAT THEY RECEIVED. THE NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD'S INVESTIGATION OF THE ACCIDENT DISCLOSED THAT THE AIRCRAFT DEVELOPED A HIGH DESCENT RATE AS IT PASSED THROUGH OR BELOW THE BASE OF A MATURE THUNDERSTORM. THE STORM WAS ASTRIDE THE APPROACH COURSE AND APPROXIMATELY 1 MILE FROM THE END OF THE RUNWAY. THE PILOTS OF OTHER FLIGHTS WHICH PRECEDED FLIGHT66 ON THE APPROACH REPORTED THAT THEY TOO HAD ENCOUNTERED PROBLEMS IN CONTROLLING THEIR AIRCRAFT TO MAINTAIN A SAFE APPROACH PROFILE. THESE AIRCRAFT AVOIDED AN ACCIDENT POSSIBLY BECAUSE THE PREVAILING CONDITIONS WERE LESS SEVERE OR BECAUSE THE PILOTS RECOGNIZED AND RESPONDED TO THE SITUATION FASTER THAN THE PILOTS OF FLIGHT 66.
Recommendation: AS AN INTERIM ACTION, INSTALL EQUIPMENT CAPABLE OF MEASURING AND TRANSMITTING TO TOWER OPERATORS THE SPEED AND DIRECTION OF THE SURFACE WIND IN THE IMMEDIATE VICINITY OF ALL RUNWAY ENDS AND INSTALL LIGHTED WINDSOCKS NEAR TO THE SIDE OF THE RUNWAY, APPROXIMATELY 1,000 FEET FROM THE ENDS, AT AIRPORTS SERVING AIR CARRIER OPERATIONS. (URGENT)
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Closed - Acceptable Action
Mode: Aviation
Location: Jamaica, NY, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Is NPRM: No
Accident #: DCA75AZ015
Accident Reports: Eastern Airlines, Inc., Boeing 727-225
Report #: AAR-76-08
Accident Date: 6/24/1975
Issue Date: 3/9/1976
Date Closed: 8/21/1981
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: FAA (Closed - Acceptable Action)
Keyword(s): Air Traffic Control,Weather,Wind

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 8/21/1981
Response: The faa's installation of the llwsas at 24 airports and plans for a further 34 more systems meet the intent of this recommendation which we classify in a closed- acceptable action status.

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 5/1/1981
Response: FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION LTR: THE FAA IS INSTALLING A SYSTEM THAT PROVIDES FOR COMPARISON OF WINDSPEED AND DIRECTION, SENSED AT REMOTE LOCATIONS ON THE AIRPORT, RELATIVE TO THOSE VALUES SENSED AT CENTER FIELD LOCATIONS. THIS SYSTEM CALLED THE LLWSAS HAS BEEN FAVORABLY EVALUATED AND IS NOW OPERATIONAL AT 24 AIRPORTS. THERE ARE 34 MORE SYSTEMS UNDER CONTRACT, AND DELIVERY WILL BEGIN ON OR ABOUT OCTOBER 1, 1981, AT THE RATE OF ONE PER WEEK. WE HAVE FURTHER CONSIDERED THE FEASIBILITY OF A PROGRAM EFFORT RELATIVE TO LIGHTED WINDSOCKS. AFTER IN DEPTH STUDY AND DISCUSSIONS, IT IS STILL OUR CONTENTION THAT THIS CONCEPT HAS LIMITED VALUE, AND WE DO NOT INTEND TO PURSUE A DEVELOPMENT FACTOR.

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 4/17/1981
Response: We were advised on july 28, 1980, to expect an answer in the near future. We are anxious to evaluate the progress of these recommenda- tions and would very much appreciate an updated status report.

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 7/28/1980
Response: FAA LTR: WE ARE REVIEWING THE STATUS OF ACTIONS TAKEN AND WILL ADVISE THE BOARD IN THE NEAR FUTURE.

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 7/21/1980
Response: At the last ntsb/faa quarterly meeting held on march 12, 1980, the faa staff were advised that number of these recommendations were in an open status awaiting a further responses from the faa. In order to evaluate the progress of the recommendations and update the public docket, we would appreciate an updated status report.

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 7/7/1976
Response: FAA LTR: ANAMOMETERS ARE BEING INSTALLED AT CHICAGO O'HARE AND WILL BE INSTALLED AT ATLANTA, HOUSTON, AND DENVER. DETERMINATION IS TO BE MADE WHETHER THEY BE INSTALLED AT THE RUNWAY THRESHOLD, THE MIDDLE MARKER, OR OUTER MARKER. ALSO THE CHOICE IS TO BE MADE BETWEEN THE MICROBAROGRAPH AND ANAMOMETER. WINDSOCKS ARE OF LIMITED VALUE AND MAY BE A DISTRACTION TO PILOTS IN LOW VISIBILITY.