NTSB Identification: NYC93IA059.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 52214.
Scheduled 14 CFR operation of CONTINENTAL AIRLINES
Incident occurred Monday, March 15, 1993 in NEWARK, NJ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/10/1994
Aircraft: BOEING 737-130, registration: N14212
Injuries: 61 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.

IMMEDIATELY AFTER LIFT-OFF, THE AIRPLANE ROLLED LEFT, BUT THE PILOT CONTROLLED THE ROLL WITH RIGHT AILERON. THE LEFT AILERON WAS OBSERVED IN A FULL UP POSITION. THE CAPTAIN ELECTED TO RETURN & LAND AT THE AIRPORT. WITH SNOW ON THE RUN- WAY, HE DECIDED TO USE 15 DEGREE WING FLAPS UNTIL 300', THEN EXTEND THE FLAPS TO 30 DEGREES. HE SAID HE NEEDED FULL RIGHT AILERON TO MAINTAIN CONTROL ONCE THE FLAPS WERE EXTENDED TO 30 DEGREES. AN EXAM REVEALED THE LEFT 'DOWN' AILERON CABLE (FOR DOWN MOVEMENT) HAD BROKEN. ALSO, THE LEFT 'UP' AILERON CABLE & BOTH RIGHT AILERON CABLES WERE WORN & WERE REPLACED. METALLURGICAL EXAMINATION REVEALED NUMEROUS WORN STRANDS IN THE CABLES. A 'C' CHECK/INSPECTION OF THE AILERON CABLES HAD BEEN ACCOMPLISHED ON 12/20/92 (580 FLIGHT HOURS BEFORE INCIDENT) VIA PROCEDURES. PROCEDURES LACKED DETAILS & NO SERVICE LIFE WAS ESTABLISHED FOR AILERON CONTROL CABLES. THE 1968 MODEL AIRPLANE HAD ABOUT 59,000 FLIGHT HOURS; NO RECORD OF PREVIOUS CABLE REPLACEMENT WAS FOUND.

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

INADEQUATE MAINTENANCE/INSPECTION BY COMPANY MAINTENANCE PERSONNEL, THE MANUFACTURER'S INADEQUATE INSPECTION AND/OR REPLACEMENT PROCEDURES FOR THE AILERON CABLES, AND SUBSEQUENT FAILURE OF THE 'DOWN' AILERON CONTROL CABLE DUE TO WEAR.

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