NTSB Identification: LAX98LA104.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, March 04, 1998 in RENO, NV
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/21/2000
Aircraft: Boeing 737-242C, registration: N746AS
Injuries: 1 Serious,5 Minor,110 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 fight encountered severe clear air turbulence en route at flight level 350 and diverted to Reno, Nevada.. There were no reports of clear air turbulence from other pilots nor was it forecasted. The seat belt signs were off at the time. A review of the flight data recorder indicated that, for the period involved, vertical acceleration (Nz) varied from +1g to +1.5g to -0.07g to +1.3g to +0.86g over a 6-second period. The recorded data also indicated that atmospheric stability existed at flight level 350 several minutes prior to the turbulent onset. There was little or no warning given to the flight crew of the impending turbulent conditions.

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

Unforecasted and sudden encounter with clear air turbulence when passengers and flight attendants were not secured in their seats.

Full narrative available

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