American Airlines Flight 625
, a Boeing 727
, crashed at St. Thomas
, U.S. Virgin Islands
on April 27, 1976 while on a domestic scheduled passenger flight originating at T. F. Green Airport
in Rhode Island
and ending at Saint Thomas, United States Virgin Islands
with an intermediate stop at John F. Kennedy International Airport
The American Airlines Boeing 727 (Registration N1963) overran the departure end of Runway 9 when landing at the Harry S Truman airport
. The aircraft struck an Instrument Landing System antenna, crashed through a chain link fence, and traveled another until stopped by a building. The aircraft was destroyed.
at St. Thomas was notorious among pilots for its short (4,658 ft) runway
. In fact, the Boeing 727 was the heaviest aircraft type authorized to use it, and even then it was only authorized in one direction.
Ultimately, the NTSB attributed this crash to pilot error on the approach – for example the maximum flap
setting of 40 degrees was never applied, which meant that the aircraft's speed was higher than V<sub>REF</sub>
as it crossed the runway threshold. This, combined with the fact that the aircraft 'floated' from the turbulent winds in the area, meant that it was already down the runway at the point of touchdown. The pilots did not act quickly enough on the brakes and proceeded to go full-throttle three seconds after touchdown, however they were unable to reach take-off speed because the 727's engines are... Read More