incident that happened on December 29th the year 2010

The Boeing 757-200 Incident at Jackson Hole Airport

The following article discusses an occurrence that occurred on December 29th, 2010. This incident involved a Boeing 757-200, N668AA, an American Airlines flight 2253. (Lieven, 2005). The Boeing crashed into the heavy snow at Jackson Hole Airport after running off the end of the departure runway number 19. There were no reported injuries among the occupants. Numerous safety concerns arose as a result of the occurrence. The aircraft suffered minimal damage as a result of the incident.

Safety Issues Related to the Incident

The incident's safety issues included a lack of proper training for pilots in detecting when the situation was occurring. The pilots should have been able to realize that the brakes ought not to have been repeatedly put in action as it would be projected after the plane had landed. There was no warning that would alert the pilots when the speed breaks were not implemented (Lieven, 2005). There was no alert to warn the pilots when the speed breaks had not been deployed when the aircraft was landing. On that note, the pilots had not received enough training on the Boeing aircrafts to be followed after an unintended thrust reverse lockout had happened. The pilot would need to be trained on the emphasis to monitoring their respective skills and management of workloads. There were three safety recommendations in existence that were issued as a recommendation for the pilots as reiterated by the Federal Aviation Administration (Cohen, 2016). The essay below stipulates the increase in awareness of the pilots in connection with the focus involving the speed brakes and thrust reverser that was deployed during the landing.

Determination of the Probable Cause

The essay below discusses the accident that occurred in the year 2010, December 29th. As stated earlier in this essay, this accident involved the American Airline craft 2253, Boeing 757-200, N668AA which made a run off on the departure end of the runway number 19 (Cohen, 2016). It suddenly came to an abrupt halt in the deep snow at the end of the runway. The good news was that there were no injuries that were reported from the participants in the aircraft at the particular time. The plane was subjected to damages (Cohen, 2016).

Possible Causes of the Accident

The National Transportation Safety Board abbreviated as NTSB found out that the likely cause of the accident was due to mechanical problems in the clutch whereby its mechanism interfered with appropriate functioning of the speed brakes. The speed brakes were required to deploy when the aircraft touched down automatically. The captain in this case also had a fault mainly because he was unable to monitor and control the brakes manually (Lieven, 2005). The lack of adequate training of the captain in multi-tasking made him not notice that the brakes had not been deployed. He was able to confirm the extension of the speed breaks. This led to his late announcement and the fact that he got startled by the thrust from the reverse failures in the initial deployment after the landing.

Pilot Awareness and Mechanical Breakdown

The essay addresses an increment in the pilot awareness on speed brakes and focuses on thrust reverser deployment at the time of landing. At the time, all the pilots were much aware of the winter operations at the airport hence went through a thorough assessment on the pertinent weather, airplane, and airport performance date while in the route to the airport (Cohen, 2016). The pilots were able to confirm that they were able to land safely with the normal declaration procedures. The reason as to why there was that mechanical breakdown resulted from the exact timing of the unloading of the main landing gears. This was just after the touchdown that was in tune with the release of the thrust reversers that got locked in transit. This was not supposed to happen, but instead, they were meant to continue deploying. Further on, a defect that was none related occurred in the case of the speed brakes mechanism where there was a glitch that prevented them from automatic deployment (Cohen, 2016).

Safety Issues Identified

The report on the accident showed that the pilots were not well trained in any situation that was in connection with the failure of speed brakes. The pilots should have been able to detect the fault and go through the necessary procedures for setting the beaks manually (Lieven, 2005). There were several procedures that the pilots were distracted from in that incident. These procedures included prompt deployment of the speed brakes after the plane touched down and monitored speed brake systems when the aircraft in landing. In this case, an alarm would have saved the situation because it would have given an alert notification to the pilots (Cohen, 2016). Setting aside the fact that the American Airlines was known for a callout confirmation of the automatic speed break. The pilots still became destructed and were unable to identify the default on time (Lieven, 2005).

There was lack of guidance in the required procedure on how to deal with the unintended reverse thrust that occurred. The lockout condition created in the thrust reverser system lockout happened because the flight crew did not do what was required in that situation. What they were needed to do was to stow the reverse thrust lever to unlock the system. Post interviews with the pilots showed that they were not in any way aware of that procedure (Cohen, 2016). In other words, the action of stirring the reverse thrust back to its place during landing roll would not have been an perceptive action.


The accident clearly described above shows that the default was in mechanical failure and in lack of training for the flight crew in that lane. The flight crew were not much aware of the procedure there were to go through when the brakes failed. The plane did not have a possible way of giving warning to the pilots when the speed brakes failed hence they got distracted with other procedures. If the plane had an alert system for that, the pilots would have been able to control the brakes automatically. Either way there should be adequate training that should be given to the pilots and the plane attendants in order to avoid other incidents like that in future. Proper training and alert procedures to flight attendants and the Boeing plane respectively would have saved the damages that occurred in that incident. This means that there is a lot that to be done in the mechanical and training aspect of the aviation sector as a whole.


Cohen, P. (2016). The Jackson project: War in the American workplace : a memoir.

Lieven, A. (2005). America right or wrong: An anatomy of American nationalism. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

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