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Accident description
Last updated: 28 March 2017
Date:Saturday 15 February 1992
Type:Silhouette image of generic DC86 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
McDonnell Douglas DC-8-63F
Operator:Air Transport International - ATI
Registration: N794AL
C/n / msn: 45923/383
First flight: 1968
Total airframe hrs:70425
Engines: 4 Pratt & Whitney JT3D-7 (Q)
Crew:Fatalities: 3 / Occupants: 3
Passengers:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Total:Fatalities: 4 / Occupants: 4
Airplane damage: Destroyed
Airplane fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:5 km (3.1 mls) NW of Toledo-Express Airport, OH (TOL) (   United States of America)
Phase: Approach (APR)
Departure airport:Seattle/Tacoma International Airport, WA (SEA/KSEA), United States of America
Destination airport:Toledo-Express Airport, OH (TOL/KTOL), United States of America
Flightnumber: 805
ATI Flight 805 departed from Seattle at 23:20 for a flight to Toledo. The 1st officer was flying the ILS approach to runway 07. For undetermined reasons, he failed to properly capture the ILS localizer and/or glide slope during the approach. At 03:13 the captain decided to carry out a go-around. The aircraft was vectored onto a base leg and given a heading of 100deg to intercept the final approach course again. With a 35 knots crosswind (at 180deg) on the approach the 1st officer had trouble capturing the localizer/glide slope. At 03:24, as the 1st officer was attempting to stabilize the approach, 3 GPWS glide slope warnings and sink rate warnings sounded. The captain took over control at 03:24:17 and performed another missed approach manoeuvre. He became spatially disoriented and inadvertently allowed an unusual attitude to develop with bank angles up to 80deg and pitch angles up to 25deg. When in a nose-low and left bank angle attitude, control of the airplane was transferred back to the 1st officer who began levelling the wings and raising the nose of the airplane. Impact with the ground occurred before the unusual attitude recovery was completed.

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: "The failure of the flight crew to properly recognize or recover in a timely manner from the unusual aircraft attitude that resulted from the captain's apparent spatial disorientation, resulting from physiological factors and/or a failed attitude director."

» Air Safety Week 10.04.1995 (p. 3-4)
» ICAO Summary 2/93 (#43)
» NTSB/AAR-92/05
» Scramble 153

Official accident investigation report
investigating agency: National Transport Safety Bureau (NTSB) - United States of America
report status: Final
report number: NTSB/AAR-92-05
report released:19 November 1992
duration of investigation: 278 days (9 months)
download report: Air Transport International, Inc., Flight 805 Douglas DC-8-63, N794AL Loss of Control and Crash Swanton, Ohio February 1 (NTSB/AAR-92-05)


photo of McDonnell Douglas DC-8-63F N794AL
ATI leased the plane in December 1991.
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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 Seattle/Tacoma International Airport, WA to Toledo-Express Airport, OH as the crow flies is 3066 km (1916 miles).

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  • 67th loss
  • 44th fatal accident
  • 556 built
  • 34th worst accident (at the time)
  • 38th worst accident (currently)
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