NTSB Identification: FTW97IA128.
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Scheduled 14 CFR operation of CONTINENTAL AIRLINES
Incident occurred Tuesday, March 18, 1997 in HOUSTON, TX
Probable Cause Approval Date: 04/24/1998
Aircraft: McDonnell Douglas DC-9-32, registration: N12508
Injuries: 101 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators used data provided by various sources and may not have traveled in support of this investigation to prepare this aircraft incident report.

An uncontained failure of the right engine occurred as the airplane lifted off the runway and began its initial takeoff climb. The airplane returned to the departure airport for a single-engine landing, and emergency crews extinguished a fire confined to the right engine's hot section. The uncontained failure resulted from a fatigue crack in the combustion chamber outer case at the forward drain boss weld. Based on an analysis of fatigue striation measurements, a detectable crack existed at the forward drain boss weld when an on wing ultrasonic inspection of the boss was performed by company maintenance personnel in December 1995.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this incident to be:

The failure of company maintenance personnel to perform a proper inspection of the combustion chamber outer case, thus allowing a detectable crack to grow to a length at which the case ruptured.

Full narrative available

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