NTSB Identification: ANC00IA010.
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Scheduled 14 CFR operation of ALASKA AIRLINES
Incident occurred Tuesday, November 02, 1999 in JUNEAU, AK
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/17/2001
Aircraft: Boeing 737-400, registration: N792AS
Injuries: 58 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.

The scheduled passenger flight was inbound for landing during the period of dawn. A cargo airplane was also inbound, preceding the passenger flight. The airport air traffic control tower (ATCT) was closed. An automated flight service station (AFSS) was in operation. AFSS personnel cannot see the runway. An airport maintenance crew was conducting snow removal training on the runway in a plow equipped truck. The passenger flight crew contacted the AFSS at the VOR (25.2 miles away), and advised they were inbound for landing. At that time, the plow was off the runway, waiting for the cargo airplane to arrive. The crew of the passenger airplane was not advised of any airfield maintenance activity. After the cargo airplane landed, the plow driver informed the AFSS of his intentions, and drove onto the runway to continue training. AFSS personnel advised the driver of the plow that the passenger airplane was about 10 minutes behind the cargo airplane. Without any further communication, the passenger flight touched down on the runway while the plow was driving along the right edge of the runway, facing away from the arriving jet. The passenger jet swerved to the left during the roll out to miss the plow truck. The right wing tip of the jet passed about 32 feet from the plow truck. The verbal report of men and equipment on the runway, given by the plow driver to the AFSS is a local NOTAM only. The local NOTAM was not transmitted to the arriving passenger flight. When the ATCT is closed, there are no mandatory reporting points for arriving airplanes. There are only recommended traffic advisories for position reporting of arriving traffic. The recommended traffic advisories are contained in the company flight operations manual.

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

The failure of the flight crew to provide a recommended landing traffic advisory, and the failure of flight service station personnel to provide a flight advisory to the arriving airplane concerning men and equipment operating on the runway. Factors in the incident were operations at an airport when the control tower was closed, and the failure of the snow plow driver to verify the eminent arrival of the airplane.

Full narrative available

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