Narrative:The PanAm DC-7 operated on a freight flight from Frankfurt to Stuttgart; weather forecasted for Stuttgart was poor: 100 m surface and vertical visibility in fog. NOTAMs were current, reporting inoperative 1, 3, 4, and 5 crossbars of the approach lights and an unreliable ILS glide slope because of airport construction works. An ILS approach attempted (by the first officer as pilot-flying) to see in minima for the aircraft (ceiling 200 m, 1/2 mile visibility) existed. When minima were reached, the approach was discontinued. The plane then suddenly hit a 10-foot high mound of earth located 66 feet short of the runway threshold and 149 feet north of the north edge of the runway. Impact tore off the undercarriage and the no. 3 engine. Control was maintained and the flight crew managed to climb away and divert to Nürnberg airport for an emergency belly landing on a foamed runway.
PROBABLE CAUSE: "(1) Improperly executed instrument approach during which the aircraft was permitted to descend below obstructing terrain before initiating a missed approach. (2) Inadequate supervision by the captain."
This map shows the airport of departure and the intended destination of the flight. The line between the airports does not
display the exact flight path.
Distance from Frankfurt International Airport to Stuttgart-Echterdingen Airport as the crow flies is 155 km (97 miles).
This information is not presented as the Flight Safety Foundation or the Aviation Safety Networks opinion as to the cause of the accident. It is preliminary and is based on the facts as they are known at this time.