NTSB Identification: ANC98LA014.
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Nonscheduled 14 CFR
Accident occurred Friday, January 02, 1998 in MCGRATH, AK
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/15/2001
Aircraft: Douglas DC-6B, registration: N861TA
Injuries: 3 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.
During the takeoff roll, while passing 45 knots indicated airspeed, ice formed between the inner and outer panes of the airplane's windshield, obscuring the crew's vision. The flight crew aborted the takeoff, the airplane drifted off the left side of the snow covered runway, and caught fire. The crew reported the airplane and windshield were cold soaked and the temperature was -10 degrees Fahrenheit. The windshield anti-ice system blows air from a combustion heater between the windshield glass panes. The air source for the heater, once the airplane has forward airspeed, is two leading edge wing scoops. The crew told the NTSB investigator that the taxi time was too short for the windshield to warm up, and that during the taxi, snow was circulated around the airplane and into the wing scoops.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The ingestion of snow into the windshield anti-ice system, and the resulting obscured windshield which made runway alignment not possible. Factors associated with this accident were the cold windshield, the reduced performance of the windshield anti-ice because of the short taxi by the crew, and the insufficient information on the system provided by the manufacturer. Full narrative available
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