NTSB Identification: FTW88IA109.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 36079.
Scheduled 14 CFR operation of TACA INTERNATIONAL AIRLINES
Incident occurred Tuesday, May 24, 1988 in NEW ORLEANS, LA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/25/1991
Aircraft: BOEING 737-3T0, registration: N75356
Injuries: 45 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.

DRG DSCNT FM FL 350 FOR IFR ARR TO NEW ORLEANS, FLT CREW NOTED GREEN & YELLOW RTRNS ON WX RADAR WITH SOME ISOLATED RED CELLS, LEFT & RGT OF INTENDED FLT PATH. BFR ENTERING CLOUDS AT 30,000', CAPT SLCTD CONTINUOUS ENG IGNITION & ACTIVATED ENG ANTI-ICE SYS. CREW SLCTD ROUTE BET 2 CELLS, DISPLAYED AS RED ON WX RADAR. HVY RAIN, HAIL & TURBC WERE ENCTRD. AT ABT16,500', BOTH ENGS FLAMED OUT. APU WAS STARTED & AC ELEC PWR WAS RESTORED WHILE DSCNDG THRU ABT 10,600'. ATMTS TO WIND- MILL RESTART WERE UNSUCCESSFUL. BOTH ENGS LIT-OFF BY USING STARTERS, BUT NEITHER WOULD ACCELERATE TO IDLE; ADVNG THRUST LEVERS INCREASED EGT BYD LIMITS. ENGS WERE SHUT DOWN TO AVOID CATASTROPHIC FAILURE. EMERG LNDG WAS MADE ON LEVEE W/O FURTHER DMG TO ACFT. INV REVEALED ACFT ENCTRD LVL 4 TSTM, BUT ENGS FLAMED OUT, THOUGH THEY HAD MET FAA SPECS FOR WATER INGESTION. ACFT HAD MINOR HAIL DMG; #2 ENG WAS DMGD FM OVERTEMP. AFTER INCIDENT, OMB 88-5 & AD 6-14-88 ISSUED TO RQR MINRPM OF 45% & TO RESTR USE OF AUTOTHRUST IN MOD/HVY PRECIP; ENG MOD WAS PROVIDED FOR INCREASED CPTY OF WTR INGESTION.

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

A DOUBLE ENGINE FLAMEOUT DUE TO WATER INGESTION WHICH OCCURRED AS A RESULT OF AN INFLIGHT ENCOUNTER WITH AN AREA OF VERY HEAVY RAIN AND HAIL. A CONTRIBUTING CAUSE OF THE INCIDENT WAS THE INADEQUATE DESIGN OF THE ENGINES AND THE FAA WATER INGESTION CERTIFICATION STANDARDS WHICH DID NOT REFLECT THE WATERFALL RATES THAT CAN BE EXPECTED IN MODERATE OR HIGHER INTENSITY THUNDERSTORMS.

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