On This Day in Aviation History
March 22nd in Aviation History: Antonov An-225 Mriya Sets Takeoff Weight Record Carrying Russian Space Shuttle
Tags: Airbus A320, Antonov An-225, Avianca, Avianca Flight 676, Bert Mooney Airport (BTM), Boeing 737-200, Boeing 747, British Airways, Buran, de-icing, Douglas C-47, Douglas DC-3, Douglas DC-6, Eagle Cap Leasing Inc., Fokker F-28, Ford 5, hijacking, Junkers F-13, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, Maritime Central Airways, New York LaGuardia Airport (LGA), Pacific Western Airlines, Pacific Western Airlines Flight 501, Pan American Grace Airlines, Philippine Airlines, Pilatus PC-12, Pilippine Airlines Flight 137, plane crashes, Space Shuttle, Space Shuttle Columbia, STs-3, USAir, USAir Flight 405, VFR
1998 – Philippine Airlines Flight 137, an Airbus A320 (RP-C3222), overshoots the runway at Bacolod City Airport. The #1 engine’s thrust reverser was inoperative, and the cockpit crew fails to compensate properly after applying full reverse thrust to engine #2 on landing. This causes runway excursion and an overshoot of the runway. Though there are no fatalities on the aircraft, the Airbus hits some shanties which results in 3 deaths.
1992 – USAir Flight 405, a Fokker F-28 (N485US) taking off from New York’s LaGuardia Airport crashes into Flushing Bay, killing 27 of its 51 occupants. Departing Runway 13 about 34 minutes after its last deicing, the aircraft stalls due to ice contamination and on its left wing. Though the Captain also did not use the appropriate USAir-approved V1 speed, the crash is also attributed to a lack of regulations regarding elapsed time after deicing.
1989 – The Antonov An-225 “Mriya,” the largest fixed-wing aircraft in the world, sets a new record for takeoff weight while carrying the Buran Soviet space shuttle: 1,129,370 pounds. It also breaks over 100 other world and class records during a 3 1/2 hour flight.
1984 – Pacific Western Airlines Flight 501 catches fire on takeoff, with no fatalities among the 119 passengers on-board (there would be 27 injuries). A popping sound heard 20 seconds into the departure roll of the Boeing 737-200 (C-GQPW) caused the flight crew to abort, thinking a tire had blown. Instead, an intense fire on the left wing occurred due to a faulty compressor disc that ruptured a fuel tank. The aircraft is almost completely destroyed and later written off.
1984 – A British Airways Boeing 747 is hijacked by a man who demands to be taken to Taiwan. The man later surrenders the same day and all 355 aboard escape unharmed.
1982 – Space Shuttle Columbia departs on STS-3, its third mission. This is the first Shuttle launch with an unpainted external fuel tank. Upon its return, STS-3 becomes the only mission to land at White Sands Space Harbor near Las Cruces, New Mexico.
1965 – Avianca Flight 676, a Douglas C-47 (DC-3) crashes into Sugar Loaf Mountain shortly after departure from Bogota-Eldorado Airport in Colombia at an elevation of 7,200ft. All 29 on the aircraft are killed due to the pilot continuing to fly by (VFR) Visual Flight Rules in unfavorable conditions.
1952 – A Douglas DC-6 (PH-TBJ) being operated by KLM Royal Dutch Airlines crashes into a forest while navigating its approach to Frankfurt International Aircraft in Germany. There are 3 survivors among the 47 on-board.
1952 – A Maritime Central Airways Douglas C-47 disappears two hours after departing St. John’s Airport in Newfoundland, Canada with four people on-board. The wreckage is found almost a year and a half later on August 27, 1953.
1934 – A Pan American Grace Airlines Ford 5 (NC407H) crashes in Lima, Peru, killing 3 of 15 on the aircraft.
1925 – A Zakavia Junkers F-13 (R-RECA) crashes in Tiflies, Georgia, killing all 5 aboard.