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Last updated: 24 February 2020
Status:Final
Date:Thursday 28 April 1977
Time:20:38
Type:Silhouette image of generic H25A model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Hawker Siddeley HS-125-600A
Operator:Southern Company Services
Registration: N40PC
C/n / msn: 256010
First flight: 1973
Total airframe hrs:1904
Engines: 2 Rolls-Royce Viper 601-22
Crew:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Passengers:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Total:Fatalities: 4 / Occupants: 4
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Aircraft fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:McLean, VA (   United States of America)
Phase: En route (ENR)
Nature:Executive
Departure airport:Washington-National Airport, DC (DCA/KDCA), United States of America
Destination airport:Birmingham Airport, AL (BHM/KBHM), United States of America
Narrative:
The Hawker Siddeley HS-125-600A crashed into a residential area near McLean, Virginia. The corporate aircraft had departed Washington National Airport 4 minutes earlier and was en route to Birmingham, Alabama. After a flight crew member reported that the aircraft was climbing through 9,300 feet, monitoring radar stations lost continuous reception of the aircraft's primary and secondary radar target information. Shortly thereafter, ground witnesses saw an explosion in the sky followed by the wreckage of the aircraft falling to the ground. The sky was overcast and light rain was falling. The four persons aboard were killed and the aircraft was destroyed. One residence and two automobiles were destroyed by impact and fire, and several other homes were damaged by falling debris.

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: "A failure or malfunction of an undetermined nature in the pilot's attitude indicating system which led to a loss of control and overstress of the aircraft structure."

Accident investigation:
cover
Investigating agency: NTSB
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 year and 3 months
Accident number: NTSB-AAR-78-11
Download report: Final report

Classification:
ADI issues
Airframe failure
Loss of control

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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 Washington-National Airport, DC to Birmingham Airport, AL as the crow flies is 1043 km (652 miles).
Accident location: Exact; as reported in the official accident report.

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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