Accident Boeing 737-832 N397DA,
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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 55980
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Date:Sunday 28 December 2008
Type:Silhouette image of generic B738 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Boeing 737-832
Owner/operator:Delta Air Lines
Registration: N397DA
MSN: 30537/638
Year of manufacture:2000
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 195
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:Seattle/Tacoma International Airport, WA (SEA/KSEA) -   United States of America
Phase: Taxi
Nature:Passenger - Scheduled
Departure airport:Seattle/Tacoma International Airport, WA (SEA/KSEA)
Destination airport:Covington, KY (CVG)
Investigating agency: NTSB
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
A Boeing 757-351 and a Boeing 737-832 were substantially damaged when the tails of both airplanes collided during the pushback process from two opposing terminal gates during night visual meteorological conditions. The flight crew and ground crew of the Boeing 737-832 reported that they had stopped, were in a static position, and in the final stages of disconnecting the tug when the collision occurred. The ground crew of the Boeing 757-351 reported that they never observed the Boeing 737-832 during their pushback process. Review of recorded communications tapes between the flight crews of both aircraft and the ramp controller revealed that the Boeing 757-351 was cleared to be pushed into the alleyway with its tail to the south. About 9 seconds later, the Boeing 737-832 was cleared for pushback into the alleyway with its tail to the north. The recorded communications tapes revealed that the ramp controller did not advise either aircraft of the opposing pushback operations. The controller stated that she thought that the Boeing 737-832 was requesting to push back from a different gate than they had requested; however, the recorded communications tapes clearly have flight crew of the Boeing 737 stating their correct gate in their initial call for a pushback clearance.
Probable Cause: The failure of the tug operator and wing walker of this airplane to maintain clearance with the other aircraft during the pushback process in dark night. Also causal was the ramp controller's misinterpretation of the other airplane's gate location and her improper clearance for both airplanes to simultaneously push back from nearly opposing gates.




Revision history:

29-Dec-2008 09:58 harro Updated
21-Dec-2016 19:25 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
03-Dec-2017 12:13 ASN Update Bot Updated [Operator, Total fatalities, Total occupants, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]

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