NTSB Identification: CHI92IA061A.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 46304.
Scheduled 14 CFR operation of AMERICAN AIRLINES (D.B.A. operation of AMERICAN AIRLINES )
Incident occurred Monday, December 23, 1991 in CHICAGO, IL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/05/1993
Aircraft: MCDONNELL DOUGLAS DC-10-30, registration: N142AA
Injuries: 315 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.

AMERICAN AIRLINES FLIGHT 73 (N142AA) WAS HOLDING IN POSITION ON RUNWAY 32R. AMERICAN AIRLINES FLIGHT 489 (N497AA) WAS CLEARED FOR TAKEOFF ON RUNWAY 9L. SHORTLY AFTER THIS, AMERICAN AIRLINES FLIGHT 873 WAS CLEARED FOR TAKEOFF ON RUNWAY 32L, FROM T1 INTERSECTION. BOTH FLIGHT 73 AND FLIGHT 873 ACKNOWLEDGED THE CLEARANCE AND INITIATED TAKEOFF ROLLS. THE LOCAL CONTROLLER DID NOT DETECT THE CONFUSION. A NEAR COLLISION OF TWO OF THE AIRCRAFT OCCURRED WHEN FLIGHT 489, IN THE INITIAL CLIMB PHASE OF FLIGHT, PASSED OVER FLIGHT 73, ON TAKEOFF ROLL, IN THE INTERSECTION OF RUNWAYS 32R AND 9L.

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

THE LOCAL CONTROLLER'S NOT UNDERSTANDING READ BACK OF RADIO COMMUNICATIONS. FACTORS INCLUDE THE PILOT-IN-COMMAND OF FLIGHT 73 NOT UNDERSTANDING VERBAL INSTRUCTIONS; LOCAL CONTROLLER NOT VISUALLY IDENTIFYING THE AIRCRAFT; AND INADEQUATE SURVEILLANCE (FAA) IN THE TOWER.

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