Incident Boeing 727-251 N280US,
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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 147064
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Date:Thursday 4 January 1990
Type:Silhouette image of generic B722 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Boeing 727-251
Owner/operator:Northwest Airlines
Registration: N280US
MSN: 21159/1179
Year of manufacture:1975
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 145
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:over Madison, Florida -   United States of America
Phase: En route
Nature:Passenger - Scheduled
Departure airport:Tampa International Airport, FL (TPA/KTPA)
Destination airport:Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, MN (MSP/KMSP)
Confidence Rating: Information is only available from news, social media or unofficial sources
While cruising at FL350 the crew heard a bang and noted the loss of no 3 engine power. A safe emergency landing was carried out at Tampa International Airport, FL (TPA). It appeared that the forward lavatory external seal was missing the safety button and the internal seal was improperly installed allowing for leakage when the airplane was pressurized. Frozen chunks of lavatory fluid had been ingested by the no. 3 engine, causing it to separate from the fuselage. The aircraft was later repaired.

PROBABLE CAUSE: "The failure of company service personnel to properly service the airplane forward lavatory."


1. NTSB Identification: MIA90IA047 at
2. FAA;
3. Aviation Week & Space Technology 8.1.90(p.32)

History of this aircraft

Other occurrences involving this aircraft
14 October 1998 N280US Aeropostal 0 Caracas-Simon Bolivar Airport sub


I took this at KTPA 04 Jan 1990. This picture was shown in the USA Today and New York Times on 05 Jan 1990.

Revision history:

26-Jul-2012 07:20 harro Added
06-Jan-2014 07:24 Anon. Updated [Narrative, Photo, ]
04-Mar-2016 18:29 Dr.John Smith Updated [Location, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]
16-Mar-2022 13:30 PolandMoment Updated [Narrative]

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