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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation A-85-120
Details
Synopsis: ON SEPTEMBER 6, 1985, A MCDONNEL DOUGLAS DC-9 AIRPLANE WITH PRATT & WHITNEY JT8D-7 ENGINES INSTALLED CRASHED SHORTLY AFTER TAKEOFF FROM RUNWAY 19R AT GENERAL MITCHELL FIELD, MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN. THE AIRPLANE WAS OWNED AND OPERATED BY MIDWEST EXPRESS AIRLINES AND WAS ON A REGULARLY SCHEDULED PASSENGER FLIGHT. THE AIRPLANE WAS DESTROYED IN THE CRASH, AND ALL 31 PERSONS ABOARD WERE KILLED. REPORTEDLY, WITNESSES HEARD A LOUD BANG DURING THE AIRPLANE'S INITIAL CLIMB AND SAW SMOKE COMING FROM ITS RIGHT ENGINE. THE NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD'S INVESTIGATION OF THE ACCIDENT IS CONTINUING. THE PRELIMINARY INVESTIGATION HAS DISCLOSED THAT 9TH- AND 10TH-STAGE HIGH-PRESSURE (HP) COMPRESSOR BLADES AND SPACER PARTS SEPARATED FROM THE RIGHT ENGINE DURING TAKEOFF.
Recommendation: TO THE FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION: Issue and airworthiness directive (AD) to require the installation of the one-piece, integral sleeve spacer at all six locations in the high-pressure compressor rotor of Pratt & Whitney JT8D-series engines not so equipped. The installation should be made as soon as practical but not later than the next opportunity wherein the engine is available in a maintenance facility where a partial or complete disassembly of the compressor can be accomplished. (Superseded by A-86-28)
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Closed - Superseded
Mode: Aviation
Location: MILWAUKEE, WI, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Is NPRM: No
Accident #: DCA85AA036
Accident Reports: Midwest Express Airlines, Inc., DC-9-14, N100ME
Report #: AAR-87-01
Accident Date: 9/6/1985
Issue Date: 11/8/1985
Date Closed: 5/13/1986
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: FAA (Closed - Superseded)
Keyword(s):

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 5/13/1986
Response: We are aware that a Final Rule has been published adopting an AD which partially fulfills the intent of this recommendation. However, we are concerned that the proposed AD would require inspection and replacement, in accordance with a specified schedule of only stage 7-8 and 9-10 removable sleeve spacers and not stage 8-9 spacers. Although there have not yet been any uncontained failures of stage 8-9 removable sleeve spacers, the energy level of the 8-9 spacer is similar to, if not greater than, that of the stage 9-10 spacer and thus the possibility of an uncontained failure cannot be dismissed. In addition, after responding to the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) at 51 FR 37, (Docket No. 85-ANE-46), we further recommended that the FAA issue a Telegraphic Airworthiness Directive, or amend the proposed AD, to require that the one-time, on-wing eddy current inspection be repeated at 1,000-cycle intervals on stage 7-8, 8-9, and 9-10 removable sleeve spacers between the high-pressure compressor rotors until they are replaced with integral sleeve spacers. Safety Recommendation A-85-120, which has now been superseded by Safety Recommendation A-86-28, is classified "Closed--Superseded."

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 2/21/1986
Response: "ENCLOSED FOR THE BOARD'S INFORMATION AND FILE IS A COPY OF A NOTICE OF PROPOSED RULEMAKING (NPRM), DOCKET NO. 85-ANE-46, THAT WAS PUBLISHED IN THE FEDERAL REGISTER ON JANUARY 2, 1986. THE NPRM PROPOSES TO ADOPT AN AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVE (AD) THAT WOULD REQUIRE ON-WING INSPECTION AND SUBSEQUENT REPLACEMENT OF HPC REMOVABLE SLEEVE SPACERS WITH HPC INTEGRAL SLEEVE SPACERS ON CERTAIN PRATT & WHITNEY JT8D ENGINES."