NTSB Identification: MIA97LA125.
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Nonscheduled 14 CFR operation of FEDERAL EXPRESS CORPORATION (D.B.A. FEDEX )
Accident occurred Wednesday, April 09, 1997 in MEMPHIS, TN
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/28/2000
Aircraft: McDonnell Douglas DC10-30F, registration: N310FE
Injuries: 6 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.

Upon arrival in Memphis the aircraft was found to have wrinkling damage to the outboard elevators and elevator counter weights. The flightcrew reported they had no turbulence or other events during the flight that would have caused the damage. Readout of the 25 hours of data contained on the digital flight data recorder (DFDR) did not show any events that would have caused the damage. Examination of the elevators showed no material defects or preexisting damage. The aircraft manufacturer stated they have seen similar damage to elevators caused by stall buffet at high altitude or high speed buffet at high altitude. The aircraft received an 'A' check while on the ground prior to departure for Memphis and no discrepancies with the elevators were noted. The flight engineer reported that he did notice any discrepancies with the elevators during preflight inspection on the flight to Memphis.

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

A stall buffet or a high speed buffet event which occurred at an undetermined time.

Full narrative available

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