Accident description
Last updated: 19 September 2014
Status:Final
Date:Thursday 26 July 1979
Time:21:32 UTC
Type:Silhouette image of generic B703 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Boeing 707-330C
Operator:Lufthansa
Registration: D-ABUY
C/n / msn: 20395/848
First flight: 1970
Engines: 4 Pratt & Whitney JT3D-3B
Crew:Fatalities: 3 / Occupants: 3
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 0
Total:Fatalities: 3 / Occupants: 3
Airplane damage: Damaged beyond repair
Location:25 km (15.6 mls) N of Rio de Janeiro-Galećo International Airport, RJ (GIG) (   Brazil) show on map
Phase: En route (ENR)
Nature:Cargo
Departure airport:Rio de Janeiro-Galećo International Airport, RJ (GIG/SBGL), Brazil
Destination airport:Dakar-Yoff Airport (DKR/GOOY), Senegal
Flightnumber: 527
Narrative:
Flight 527 was cleared for a No.16 departure by ground control and was instructed to make a right turn after take-off, heading the Caxias VOR, climbing to and maintaining 2000 feet. The aircraft took off from runway 27 at 21:27. Approach control then asked the crew to increase their speed. The speed increased progressively to 304 knots, exceeding the 250 knots maximum speed inside the terminal control area below 10000 feet. While Flight 527 was flying towards mountainous terrain and increasing its speed (in the north sector of the radar scope), the controller was busy vectoring an excessive amount of traffic in the south sector. The assistant departure controller failed to monitor the traffic. When the controller turned his attention to LH527 again, he was surprised by the position of the aircraft and instructed 'LH, turn right heading 140, just now, over'. The controller repeated his instructions and instructed the crew to increase their rate of climb. At that time the GPWS sounded in the cockpit.
The aircraft struck trees on the slope of a mountain in a nose-up, left wing down attitude and continued 800m while breaking up.


PROBABLE CAUSE: "It is clear that there was a breakdown in team-work of the personnel on duty in Rio approach control at that time.
The departure controller, through incomplete instructions, caused LH527 to fly for a period of time on a heading and at an altitude that led the aircraft to collision.
The assistant controller, the co-ordinator and the supervisor on duty did not support the departure controller as they should have done.
A contributing factor was that the crew accepted the incomplete ATC instructions (no clearance limit or alternate procedure) and flew during 1 min 41s without bilateral communications and in potential danger inherent in these incomplete instructions."

Classification:

Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT) - Mountain

Sources:
» FUS Bericht 2X001-0/79
» ICAO Circular 173-AN/109 (31-43)


Photos

photo of Boeing 707-330C D-ABUY
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Map
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 Rio de Janeiro-Galećo International Airport, RJ to Dakar-Yoff Airport as the crow flies is 5012 km (3132 miles).

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Boeing 707

  • 69th loss
  • 858 built
  • 41st worst accident (at the time)
  • 63rd worst accident (currently)
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