ASN Aircraft accident Boeing 737-7H4 (WL) N784SW Detroit-Metropolitan Wayne County Airport, MI (DTW)
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Status:Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Date:Wednesday 17 February 2016
Type:Silhouette image of generic B737 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Boeing 737-7H4 (WL)
Operator:Southwest Airlines
Registration: N784SW
MSN: 29810/677
First flight: 2000-09-25 (15 years 5 months)
Total airframe hrs:55350
Engines: 2 CFMI CFM56-7B24
Crew:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants:
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants:
Total:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants:
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Aircraft fate: Repaired
Location:Detroit-Metropolitan Wayne County Airport, MI (DTW) (   United States of America)
Phase: Standing (STD)
Nature:Domestic Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:Detroit-Metropolitan Wayne County Airport, MI (DTW/KDTW), United States of America
Destination airport:Dallas-Love Field, TX (DAL/KDAL), United States of America
An American Airlines Boeing 737-800 (N925NN), contacted a Southwest Airlines Boeing 737-700 (N784SW), that was stationary on a deice pad with engines stopped and was being deiced at Detroit Metropolitan Airport (DTW). The American Airlines B737 was taxiing to an adjacent deice pad when it struck the Southwest Airlines B737. N925NN incurred damage to the right winglet, and N784SW sustained substantial damage to its right elevator, elevator tab, stabilizer leading edge, and APU exhaust. There were no injuries on either airplane, and both airplanes taxied back to gate to deplane passengers.
According to the Southwest flight crew, N784SW was stationary on the deice pad 3 with the engines shut down and was being deiced. According to the deice ground crew, N784SW and a United airplane on deice pad 4 were not fully pulled into their respective parking spots on the deice pad. N925NN passed behind N784SW and turned to enter to an adjacent deice pad, and its right winglet contacted the right elevator, horizontal stabilizer, and APU of the Southwest B737.

Probable Cause:

Probable Cause: N925NN flight crew's incorrect evaluation of the clearance between the two aircraft, leading to the inadvertent collision of the winglet with the horizontal stabilizer and elevator of N784SW

Accident investigation:

Investigating agency: NTSB
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 4 years and 1 months
Accident number: DCA16CA094A
Download report: Final report

Damaged on the ground


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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 Detroit-Metropolitan Wayne County Airport, MI to Dallas-Love Field, TX as the crow flies is 1567 km (979 miles).
Accident location: Approximate; accuracy within a few kilometers.

This information is not presented as the Flight Safety Foundation or the Aviation Safety Network’s opinion as to the cause of the accident. It is preliminary and is based on the facts as they are known at this time.
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