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Last updated: 21 April 2019
Date:Saturday 6 July 1996
Type:Silhouette image of generic MD88 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
McDonnell Douglas MD-88
Operator:Delta Air Lines
Registration: N927DA
C/n / msn: 49714/1524
First flight: 1988
Total airframe hrs:22031
Engines: 2 Pratt & Whitney JT8D-219
Crew:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 5
Passengers:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 142
Total:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 147
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Aircraft fate: Repaired
Location:Pensacola Regional Airport, FL (PNS) (   United States of America)
Phase: Takeoff (TOF)
Nature:Domestic Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:Pensacola Regional Airport, FL (PNS/KPNS), United States of America
Destination airport:Atlanta-William B. Hartsfield International Airport, GA (ATL/KATL), United States of America
Delta Flight 1288 was a domestic flight from Pensacola (PNS) to Atlanta (ATL). The MD-88 taxied to runway 17 and was cleared for takeoff at 14:23.
The first officer, who was the pilot flying, advanced the throttles and called for the autothrottles to be set when the engine pressure ratio (EPR) reached 1.35. The throttles were advancing in the autothrottle mode when the flightcrew heard a "loud bang,"’ followed by the loss of cockpit lighting and instrumentation.
The airplane had reached a speed of about 40 knots. The captain took control of the airplane and retarded both throttles to idle. He applied manual brakes and brought the airplane to a gradual stop on the runway. The captain did not command reverse engine thrust, and the ground spoilers were not deployed.
It appeared that the no. 1 engine of the aircraft suffered an uncontained failure. Debris entered the passenger cabin, causing the death of two passengers seated at row 37 (seats A and C).

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: "The fracture of the left engine’s front compressor fan hub, which resulted from the failure of Delta Air Lines’ fluorescent penetrant inspection process to detect a detectable fatigue crack initiating from an area of altered microstructure that was created during the drilling process by Volvo for Pratt & Whitney and that went undetected at the time of manufacture. Contributing to the accident was the lack of sufficient redundancy in the in-service inspection program."

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: NTSB
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 year and 9 months
Accident number: DCA96MA068
Download report: Summary report

Uncontained engine failure

Follow-up / safety actions

NTSB issued 19 Safety Recommendations

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photo of MD-88-N927DA
photo of MD-88-N927DA
photo of MD-88-N927DA
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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 Pensacola Regional Airport, FL to Atlanta-William B. Hartsfield International Airport, GA as the crow flies is 435 km (272 miles).
Accident location: Exact; deduced from 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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