On February 18, 2007, about 1506 eastern standard time, Delta Connection flight 6448, an Embraer ERJ-170, N862RW, operated by Shuttle America, Inc., was landing on runway 28 at Cleveland-Hopkins International Airport, Cleveland, Ohio, during snow conditions when it overran the end of the runway, contacted an instrument landing system (ILS) antenna, and struck an airport perimeter fence. The airplane's nose gear collapsed during the overrun. Of the 2 flight crewmembers, 2 flight attendants, and 71 passengers on board, 3 passengers received minor injuries. The airplane received substantial damage from the impact forces. The flight was operating under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 121 from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Atlanta, Georgia. Instrument meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of this accident was the failure of the flight crew to execute a missed approach when visual cues for the runway were not distinct and identifiable. Contributing to the accident were (1) the crew's decision to descend to the ILS decision height instead of the localizer (glideslope out) minimum descent altitude; (2) the first officer's long landing on a short contaminated runway and the crew's failure to use reverse thrust and braking to their maximum effectiveness; (3) the captain's fatigue, which affected his ability to effectively plan for and monitor the approach and landing; and (4) Shuttle America's failure to administer an attendance policy that permitted flight crewmembers to call in as fatigued without fear of reprisals.
The safety issues discussed in this report focus on (1) flight training for rejected landings in deteriorating weather conditions and maximum performance landings on contaminated runways, (2) standard operating procedures for the go-around callout, and (3) pilot fatigue policies. Safety recommendations concerning these issues are addressed to the Federal Aviation Administration.
As a result of the investigation of this accident, the National Transportation Safety Board makes the following recommendations:
To the Federal Aviation Administration:
Require 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 121, 135, and Part 91 subpart K operators to include, in their initial, upgrade, transition, and recurrent simulator training for turbojet airplanes, (1) decision-making for rejected landings below 50 feet along with a rapid reduction in visual cues and (2) practice in executing this maneuver. (A-08-16)
Require 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 121, 135, and Part 91 subpart K operators to include, in their initial, upgrade, transition, and recurrent simulator training for turbojet airplanes, practice for pilots in accomplishing maximum performance landings on contaminated runways. (A-08-17)
Require 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 121, 135, and Part 91 subpart K operators to have a written policy emphasizing that either pilot can make a go-around callout and that the response to the callout is an immediate missed approach. (A-08-18)
In cooperation with pilot unions, the Regional Airline Association, and the Air Transport Association, develop a specific, standardized policy for 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 121, 135, and Part 91 subpart K operators that would allow flight crewmembers to decline assignments or remove themselves from duty if they were impaired by a lack of sleep. (A-08-19)
Once the fatigue policy described in Safety Recommendation A-08-19 has been developed, require 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 121, 135, and Part 91 subpart K operators to adopt this policy and provide, in writing, details of the policy to their flight crewmembers, including the administrative implications of fatigue calls. (A-08-20)
Previously Issued Recommendations Classified in This Report
Safety Recommendations A-03-11 and -12 are classified "Open-Acceptable Response" in section 2.2.3 of this report.
Safety Recommendation A-07-57 (urgent) is classified "Open-Unacceptable Response" and Safety Recommendation A-07-61 is classified "Open-Acceptable Response" in section 126.96.36.199 of this report.