NTSB Identification: NYC97LA009.
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Scheduled 14 CFR operation of AMERICAN AIRLINES, INC
Accident occurred Monday, October 28, 1996 in JAMAICA, NY
Probable Cause Approval Date: 09/12/2000
Aircraft: McDonnell Douglas MD-80, registration: N244AA
Injuries: 1 Serious,2 Minor,90 Uninjured.
NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.
The flight was inbound to land, when the flight crew observed an unsafe nose gear indication. The crew was unable to confirm that the gear was down, and diverted to Runway 31R at JFK. The airplane landed on the runway, with the nose gear retracted, and an emergency evacuation was performed. Examination of the wreckage revealed the nose landing gear upper lock link was fractured into two pieces. The linkage jammed against the shock strut structure, preventing extension of the strut. According to the airplane manufacturer, the nose landing gear upper lock link failed due to fatigue. It was made from aluminum plating. Originally, all the links were made from forged aluminum. Then, the company used plated aluminum because it weighed less. Although both types of lock links were of the same strength, the aluminum plating fatigued sooner than the forged links. After the accident, the company replaced all aluminum plated upper lock links with forged ones.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: Failure of the nose landing gear upper lock link. Full narrative available
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