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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation A-76-036
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: DEVELOP AND INSTITUTE PROCEDURES WHEREBY APPROACH CONTROLLERS, TOWER CONTROLLERS, AND PILOTS ARE PROVIDED TIMELY INFORMATION REGARDING THE EXISTENCE OF THUNDERSTORM ACTIVITY NEAR TO DEPARTURE OR APPROACH FLIGHTPATHS. (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: 12/18/1984
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: FAA (Closed - Acceptable Action)
Keyword(s): Air Traffic Control,Thunderstorms/Rain/Snow,Weather

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 12/18/1984
Response: The safety board has reviewed the briefing guide for change 7 to the faa air traffic control handbook 7110.65c and notes that center weather advisories (cwas) are to be broadcast and generally handled similarly to sigmet alerts. The safety board understands also, from discussions with the faa's terminal procedures staff, that faa's facility operation and administration handbook 7210.3g has been changed effective on october 25, 1984, to require that cwas be included on automatic terminal information service broadcasts. These changes to faa handbooks 7110.65c and 7210.3g satisfy the objectives of safety recommendations a-81-23, a-76-36, a-74-14, which have been classified as closed--acceptable action. Thank you for your efforts to respond to the safety board's recommendations.

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 5/24/1984
Response: FAA COMMENT: ENCLOSED FOR THE BOARD'S INFORMATION IS A COPY OF OUR BRIEFING GUIDE FOR CHANGE 7 TO THE FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION'S AIR TRAFFIC CONTROL HANDBOOK 7110.65C. THESE CHANGES WHICH WERE EFFECTIVE MARCH 15, 1984, AMONG OTHERS, OUTLINE THE PROCEDURES FOR THE HANDLING OF CWA'S.

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 5/23/1984
Response:

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 8/21/1981
Response: We requested that thunderstorm information provided to approach controllers and tower controllers be timely. Considering the rapid development, speeds, and movement of thunderstorms, it is imperative for such information to be timely. The actions being taken to satisfy this recommendation are commendable, and we appreciate the faa's offer to keep us informed of significant progress. This recommendation is maintained in an open--acceptable action status.

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 5/1/1981
Response: FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION LTR: THERE ARE CURRENTLY 18 FAA AIR ROUTE TRAFFIC CONTROL CENTERS (ARTCC'S) WITH COMMISSIONED CENTER WEATHER SERVICE UNITS (CWSU). PRESENT PLANS CALL FOR INSTALLATION AND TESTING OF AUTO DIAL CONFERENCE CALL CAPABILITIES IN THE CWSU AT THE INDIANAPOLIS ARTCC. THIS WILL ALLOW THE CWSU TO PROVIDE WEATHER INFORMATION TO POSITIONS WITHIN TERMINAL RADAR FACILITIES AND FSS'S THAT HAVE AN EN ROUTE FLIGHT ADVISORY SERVICE (EFAS) FUNCTION. WE PLAN TO USE THE FSS AUTOMATION SYSTEM COMPONENTS TO DISSEMINATE WEATHER INFORMATION TO FSS'S AND CWSU'S; AND OUR NATIONAL AIRSPACE DATA INTERCHANGE NETWORK (NADIN) FOR COMMUNICATION BETWEEN CWSU'S AND FSS'S WITH CATHODE-RAY TUBE (CRT) DISPLAYS (1982). AN OPERATIONAL TEST/ EVALUATION OF THE COLOR WEATHER RADAR SYSTEM AT CLEVELAND ARTCC IS SCHEDULED FOR COMPLETION BY THE END OF THE YEAR.

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 to 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 a number of these recommendations were in an open status awaiting a further response 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: THE FAA STATES THEY ARE TESTING A NEW PROCEDURE TO ALERT CONTROLLERS AND PILOTS OF THUNDERSTORMS OBSERVED BY NWS RADAR 30 MILES OR CLOSER TO FIVE MAJOR TERMINALS IN THE WASHINGTON, D.C., AND NEW YORK CITY AREA. THE NWS WILL NOTIFY THE DUTY METEOROLOGIST AT THE FAA'S CONTROL FLOW CONTROL FACILITY, WHO IN TURN WILL ALERT THE APPROPRIATE ATC TOWER AND ARTC CENTER. THESE FACILITIES, IN TURN, WILL ADVISE PILOTS OPERATING IN THE AFFECTED AREA.