Narrative:The DC-10 approached Boston runway 33L in bad weather (rain, fog, 1.2 km visibility). The aircraft struck approach lights 500 feet short of the threshold and collided with a dyke. The right main gear was sheared off, the aircraft then skidded and came to a rest 3000 feet from the threshold.
PROBABLE CAUSE: "The captain did not recognize, and may have been unable to recognize, an increased rate of descent in time to arrest it before the aircraft struck the approach light piers. The increased rate of descent was induced by an encounter with a low-level wind shear at a critical point in the landing approach where he was transitioning from automatic flight control under instrument flight conditions to manual flight control with visual references. The captain's ability to detect and arrest the increased rate of descent was adversely affected by a lack of information as to the existence of the wind shear and the marginal visual cues available. The minimal DC-10 wheel clearance above the approach lights and the runway threshold afforded by the ILS glide slope made the response time critical and, under the circumstances, produced a situation wherein a pilot's ability to make a safe landing was greatly diminished."
Official accident investigation report
Follow-up / safety actions
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 Madrid-Barajas Airport to Boston-Logan International Airport, MA as the crow flies is 5435 km (3397 miles).