NTSB Identification: NYC89IA123A.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 41735.
Scheduled 14 CFR
Incident occurred Sunday, April 23, 1989 in NEW YORK, NY
Probable Cause Approval Date: 08/26/1992
Aircraft: FAIRCHILD SWEARINGEN SA-227AC, registration: N3044J
Injuries: 241 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.

TWO 747S WERE ON APPROACH FOR RWY 31R, FOLLOWED BY A SWEARINGEN SA 227AC MERLIN. THE MERLIN WAS GIVEN A VISUAL APPROACH WHICH THE PILOT ACCEPTED AND TRAFFIC HE WAS TO FOLLOW WAS CALLED AS BEING AT THE 11 O'CLOCK POSITION. RADAR DATA SHOWED THE FIRST 747 ONLY 10 DEGREES TO THE LEFT OF THE NOSE OF THE MERLIN WHICH THE FLIGHT CREW IDENTIFIED AS THE TRAFFIC TO FOLLOW. THE SECOND 747 WHICH WAS THE ONE TO BE FOLLOWED WAS 45 DEGREES TO THE LEFT OF THE NOSE. THE MERLIN PASSED APPROXIMATELY 300 FT OVER THE TOP OF THE 2ND 747 IN THE VICINITY OF THE OUTER MARKER WHILE ON THE VISUAL APPROACH. NO EVASIVE ACTION WAS TAKEN. THE CAPTAIN OF THE MERLIN SAID HE NORMALLY FLYS 1 TO 1 1/2 DOTS HIGH ON THE GLIDE SLOPE FOR WAKE TURBULENCE. THE SUN WAS AT AN ANGLE THAT BACKLIGHTED BOTH 747S.

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

THE FAILURE OF THE SWEARINGEN FLIGHT CREW TO PROPERLY IDENTIFY THE AIRPLANE THEY WERE TO FOLLOW, PRIOR TO ACCEPTING THE VISUAL APPROACH TO RUNWAY 31R.

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