ASN Aircraft accident Boeing 737-46J JY-JAQ Kabul-Hamid Karzai International Airport (KBL)
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Status:Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Date:Saturday 10 December 2016
Type:Silhouette image of generic B734 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Boeing 737-46J
Operating for:Safi Airways
Leased from:Jordan Aviation
Registration: JY-JAQ
MSN: 27826/2694
First flight: 1995-01-27 (21 years 11 months)
Total airframe hrs:56805
Engines: 2 CFMI CFM56-3C1
Crew:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 9
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 164
Total:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 173
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Aircraft fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Kabul-Hamid Karzai International Airport (KBL) (   Afghanistan)
Phase: Landing (LDG)
Nature:Domestic Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:Herat Airport (HEA/OAHR), Afghanistan
Destination airport:Kabul-Hamid Karzai International Airport (KBL/OAKB), Afghanistan
Safi Airways flight 502, a Boeing 737-400, was damaged in a landing accident on runway 29 at Kabul Airport, Afghanistan.
The flight departed from Herat Airport, Afghanistan at 07:00 UTC, bound for Kabul International Airport.
As the flight approached Kabul, the crew received the automatic terminal information service (ATIS) at 07:45 UTC indicating normal weather with visibility of 6 km, temperature +7 degrees Celsius and wind of 150° at 7 knots.
The aircraft was configured for landing with the flaps set to 30, and approach speed selected of 152 knots (Vref + 10) indicated airspeed (IAS). The aircraft was cleared for an ILS approach to runway 29. The aircraft was vectored by the radar controller for runway 29. Air flight was cleared to land, with the wind reported to be 190 degrees at 15 knots.
The crew stated that a few seconds after the touchdown, they felt the aircraft vibrating, during which they applied brakes and deployed the reverse thrust. The vibration was followed by the aircraft rolling slightly low to the right. It later came to a full stop left of the runway centre line, resting on its left main landing gear and the right engine, with the nose landing gear in the air.
The captain declared an emergency to ATC and the crew initiated an evacuation from the left side of the aircraft. Evacuation was successfully accomplished with no reported injuries.

Kabul ARFF reached the occurrence aircraft and observed the smoke coming from right side and immediately deployed their procedures by spraying foam on engine no. 2.
The aircraft sustained substantial damage due to the separation of the right main gear resulting in the aircraft skidding on the right engine cowlings.

Probable Cause:

The Investigation committee determines that the airplane occasionally experienced main landing gear shimmy and the most probable cause indicated that the struts were extended for long period of time. As a result, the torsion link of the shimmy damper remained in an extended vertical position, where the damper has less mechanical advantage for longer periods of time. Despite the presence of shimmy damper hardware which is designed to reduce the torsional vibration energy generated during landing.
- High altitude airport of 5877 feet
- An overly soft landing, allows the landing gears to remain in the air mode longer, which makes them more vulnerable to shimmy
- Touchdown with a closure rate of 1 fps, which is considered overly soft and may increase the risk of shimmy torsional forces
- High ground speed at touchdown of 178 knots ,which resulted from the high touchdown airspeed of 158 knots , touchdown at (VREF+16)

Accident investigation:

Investigating agency: AAID Jordan
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 year
Accident number: Final report
Download report: Final report

Landing gear collapse
Runway mishap

» Safi Airways

METAR Weather report:
07:50 UTC / 12:20 local time:
OAKB 100750Z 15009KT 6000 BKN040 09/03 Q1015 NOSIG RMK WHT WHT


photo of Boeing-737-46J-
Boeing 737 main gear torsion links

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 Herat Airport to Kabul-Hamid Karzai International Airport as the crow flies is 638 km (399 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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Boeing 737-400

  • 486 built
  • 25th loss
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  • 58th worst accident (at the time)
  • 59th worst accident (currently)
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