Ground...We need a tug and a bus....


Does It Really Matter....?
Staff member
NTSB Identification: MIA03IA168
Scheduled 14 CFR Part 121: Air Carrier operation of AMERICAN AIRLINES INC (D.B.A. American Airlines Inc.)
Incident occurred Sunday, August 24, 2003 in Miami, FL
Aircraft: Boeing 757-223, registration: N609AA
Injuries: 169 Uninjured.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed.

On August 24, 2003, about 1110 eastern daylight time, a Boeing 757-223, N609AA, operated by American Airlines Inc. as flight 1163, a Title 14 CFR Part 121 scheduled domestic passenger flight, had a failure of the left main landing gear truck beam, while taxiing for takeoff at Miami International Airport, Miami, Florida. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed. An instrument flight rules flight plan was filed. The airplane received minor damage. The two airline transport-rated pilots, four flight attendants, and 163 passengers reported no injuries. The flight was originating at the time, and was en route to Chicago, Illinois.

The flight had departed the gate and was taxiing on taxiway M4, at about 5-10 knots, when the airplane yawed and tilted to the left, and then stopped. Another pilot advised that there appeared to be a problem with the left gear. The airplane was shut down, the passengers and crew exited the airplane through door L1, using stairs. Examination of the left main landing gear reveled that the truck beam, part number 161N1611-6, serial number 16PE2, had a circumferential fracture 14 inches forward of the aft 2 wheels, and had separated into 2 pieces. The truck beam had been in service since the airplane was new in 1996, and had accumulated 7,517 cycles. The service life on this part is 12,000 cycles or 10 years which ever came first.

Index for Aug2003 | Index of months
Is that really a bad mark for them? That must suck. There is nothing that they could have done to prevent that. Do the mechanics ever recieve any "marks" for such incidents.
At least it was on taxi to takeoff and not on landing...considering the alternative makes that "bad mark"look a little better.
No. The pilots get the blame. Their preflight preparations were "incomplete." So next time you see these guys they will be carrying around an x-ray machine to look at the landing gear. And yes, it stays on their record forever. They will have a very difficult time getting hired at another airline if they get furloughed someday.
No it does not make sense!

We're supposed to carry around X-ray machines to check for faulty metal parts? Excuse me but the accident-incident rules are ridiculous.
That's what I was thinking. We know the pilots could see the problem after it happened, but I wonder if they could see any sign of a fracture during the preflight. I have to believe that they would not have missed a fracture so big that the gear collapsed. How happy would the company if the pilots refused to push back until they could complete the X-Ray check.
Calm down Tenney. No airline is going to turn them away because of this incident. It's just that, an incident. People are getting hired with incidents on their record right now, even with people on the street. Aviation is a dangerous business, and sometimes things like this happen beyond our control. No need for the drama.

I also have to disagree with your view that this is a black mark. I have an incident on my record and managed to get hired by every major airline I interviewed with.

The FAA inspector who investigated my incident was a retired TWA guy. He even mentioned that I might be able to use the incident in a positive way. It showed that I dealt with an inflight emergency successfully.
Chicaga and RedBelly your experience is not typical.

I have an incident on my record from a hard landing by a student in 1992. It has resulted in several denials, and I was almost fired from Midway because they missed it in my application.

It is a huge black mark on your record. They don't go away, ever! Your FAA enforcement records are purged after 5 years, but accident/incident records are controlled by NTSB and they do not purge records.

Do not tell people to calm down if you don't know the facts. Several successful airline careers have been ruined by stupid incidents credited to a CFI, not just mine. Delta told me in the interview that it was normally disqualifying. So did Southwest and jetBlue. Midway never asked, found out later and I got a carpet dance with John F the chief pilot. He was not happy and almost accused me of falsifying records. I politely responded that he had never asked about incident-accident reports, they had never given me a release form to sign, and by the way, how did you find out?

Turns out they had photocopied the FAA records request form and sent it to the NTSB. "That's forgery or fraud, one of the two" was my polite response. They dropped the matter but I was pretty upset by it for quite a while.

Young aviators out there, it is vitally important that you make every attempt to avoid being credited with an accident or incident. If you are ever involved in anything that might qualify, do not volunteer information until you have spoken with a successful and reputable aviation attorney. Your career will definitely not be positively affected with accident-incident history on your record!

You have the right to refuse or reserve comments or statements at an accident-incident scene until you have spoken with legal counsel. If you are an ALPA member, they have an entire legal department dedicated to this one issue.

If I rant about one thing on this board worth listening to, this is it. That fateful day in August 1992 has affected my career more negatively than any other day.

I recently got turned down during the interview with Citation Shares because of my accident-incident history.
Well how hard a landing was it, and how many accidents/incidents do you have? The only way you are going to get turned away from a major or regional is a) if you don't disclose it, which seems to be the case with Midway, or b) it is such a serious offense they believe that it shows you have acted in such a way it is not condusive to the way they want their pilots to act.

This board is for pilots hopefuls moving up the ranks to a career in the airlines or other forms of professional aviation (we know about you Iain!
). To put a blanket statement out there saying "if you get an incident on your record you are DOOMED! You will never be an airline pilot!" That is wrong.

I am getting the feeling you are bitter about this subject. Please, don't spread your bitterness on the board. You claim to be a motivational speaker, but at the moment are being anything but that.
Yes of course I am bitter! It was a dinky little hard landing and it was my only incident. It wasn't even my landing! A student dented the nose gear on a PA-28 and it ruined my career in some ways.

Read my post again carefully. This incident, over 11 years ago, has disqualified me from several interviews. I wonder how many interviews I haven't gotten because of it?

I have been applying to ATA since 1995. I have a bunch of friends who have walked in my application so many times the CP must know my handwriting. But never a call. Gee I wonder why? Actually I hope it is the incident and not something I don't know about!

Acc-Inc history is a big deal. If you have one, then you have to deal with it. If you don't, then my goal is to help you avoid it!!! One of the main reasons I am a safety counselor is to help aspiring aviation professionals avoid accidents and incidents.

Don't look at it as a negative. Look at it more as "I learned about flying from that."

I have interviewd for 14 airlines/fractionals in my career. I've gotten 8 yes answers so far. The accident-incident history was definitely a factor in the following airlines:

1) Piedmont. CP told me it would disqualify me in the interview.
2) Southwest. HR told me thay "prefer pilots with clean records"
3) jetBlue. Pilot interviewing me said "It doesn't help you when we have 200 pilots here today with clean records."
4) Delta. HR says "accident/incident history is normally disqualifying but we still want to hear what you have to say." Rejected!
5) Airtran. "We still like your experience although we have to consider all factors." They said NO.
6) Pinnacle. Didn't like it but offered me a job anyway.
7) Citation Shares. The interview ended as soon as I confirmed an incident on my records.

I already told you the Midway story.

Eagle never asked and as far as I know they never found out:

Mesa seemed ok with it. I think they thought that I would never leave

By the way, where do I claim to be a Motivational Speaker? If that is on one of my websites it's an error. I don't claim to be a positive thinker all the time. Life is both positive and negative. You have to deal with the negatives, too. I've found that being positive all the time is just unrealistic. There is a time for remorse, sadness, frustration and anger, just as there is a time for joy, excitement and satisfaction.

I do believe that life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you handle it, though. I've handled my incident but I wouldn't wish it on any of you!
Gawd...I gotta respond to this one

"It was a dinky little hard landing and it was my only incident. It wasn't even my landing! A student dented the nose gear on a PA-28 and it ruined my career in some ways"

If you were the CFI then it was your landing...

I've known quite a few folks with incidents from their flight training days who have had successful aviation careers. One guy had a violation on his record from a runway incursion when he was a regional Captain...he's now a pilot for America West.

If you have an incident there are two things you can do. Come up with a story about how you learned from the incident and try to show it in a positive light. Also, the more time and experience you put between the incident and the interview, the better.

The American pilots will be taken care of by their union. I've seen situations FAR worse than this one that didn't even result in remedial action by the company or the FAA.
Re: Gawd...I gotta respond to this one

I agree. The union will take care of them as long as they are with AA.

But what if they get furloughed?

I use my incident story in my interviews. Nonetheless it has disqualified me, as I have previously stated.

Be careful out there!
In fact, the guys that landed a little short in SLC and took out some of the approach lights underwent retraining and kept on truckin'!
John, I found this on your website. "Mr. Tenney offers a humorous outlook on commercial and general aviation that nonetheless makes a point." Truthfully, I find this statement inconsistent with the content of the vast majority of your posts on this board.
Have you ever heard me speak?

[/ QUOTE ]

Nope, but I've seen you write!!

Seriously, I'm not trying to knock your experiences, and I do agree that everyone needs to watch out for black marks that may appear on their record. But you, like I do, don't usually get involved in a post unless you feel especially passionate about your view on the subject. Unfortunately, all we seem to see is that you are passionate about the negative aspects of this career field. I'm sure you had some great times as well at Eagle and Midway. We just don't ever hear about them.