Narrative:The pilots had initially briefed the approach to runway 27, but since winds were calm a straight in visual approach to runway 09 was attempted. The crews' statements indicate that the base leg was normal and the gear was down and flaps at 30 degrees when the plane impacted trees 3,650 feet short of the runway, generally along the runway centerline. The tops of the trees were broken about 50 feet above ground level. The plane descended through trees until impacting the ground about 1,000 feet later. It slid an additional 1,100 feet - most of it in open field - and came to rest about 1,000 feet from the runway facing in the opposite direction of travel (approximately 260 degrees). The plane struck construction vehicles that were parked on the field during the night. Burn marks on the ground indicate a fire on the plane for the last 1,000 feet or so of travel.
PROBABLE CAUSE: "The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of the accident was the captainís and first officerís failure to establish and maintain a proper glidepath during the night visual approach to landing. Contributing to the accident was a combination of the captainís and first officerís fatigue, the captainís and first officerís failure to adhere to company flight procedures, the captainís and flight engineerís failure to monitor the approach, and the first officerís color vision deficiency. "
Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT) - Ground
METAR Weather report:
09:53 UTC / 05:53 local time: KTLH 260953Z 00000KT 8SM FEW001 SCT150 SCT250 22/22 A3011 RMK AO2 SLP195 T02220217=
10:53 UTC / 06:43 local time: KTLH 261053Z 00000KT 9SM FEW001 SCT015 SCT150 BKN250 22/22 A3013 RMK AO2 SLP200 VIS SW-NW 1/2 CB DSNT SE CB DSNT SW FU SCT015 FU PLUME OVR APCH RWY 09 T02220217=
Official accident investigation report
Follow-up / safety actions
Video, social media
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 Memphis International Airport, TN to Tallahassee Municipal Airport, FL as the crow flies is 732 km (458 miles).