IDAWA From Italy, joined Aug 2004, 303 posts, RR: 0 Posted (8 years 4 months 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 9150 times:
I've been gathering information for years about the 1976 Turkish Airlines 727 crash, in which a close friend of my mother's was killed together with other 153 people, many of which were Italians. I'm the only "aviator" in my family, and, as a newly-graduated aeronautical engineer and full-time aviation enthusiast, probably the only one that may understand more deeply the causes of the crash, going beyond the plain "pilot error" explanation that was given to the victims' relatives, and that was the only thing known for decades within my family.
Unluckily, there seems to be very few information around about the accident. I'm now posting all the data I've been able to gather, and I ask you to add or correct information.
On 19 September 1976, the flight, operated by 727-2F2Adv TC-JBH (named "Antalya"), originated in Milan, Italy, bound for Istanbul and Antalya. The Milan-Istanbul leg was routine. The 727 then departed Istanbul, with a routing via the Yalova and Afyon VORs, which is consistent with the VA16 airway. After passing the Afyon VOR, the flight proceeded directly to Antalya. After some minutes, the crew called Antalya tower reporting runway lights in sight, and requesting a runway 36 approach. The tower cleared the flight for the approach, but warned them they didn't have the aircraft in sight. It appears that the "runway" was in reality a boulevard in Isparta, some 100 km north of Antalya. The Isparta boulevard had approximately the same magnetic heading than the Antalya runway. But while on the extended runway centerline there was the sea, on the extended boulevard centerline there were Karatepe mountains. The crew descended over the darkness of what they believed to be the sea, and flew the 727 into a mountain at 23.15.
MEA-707 From Netherlands, joined Nov 1999, 4264 posts, RR: 34
Reply 3, posted (8 years 4 months 23 hours ago) and read 9007 times:
Crashes like this were more common in the 1970s, less advanced radar and so, and a text book case of 'get home-itis,' last leg for the crew, and if they believe to see the runway, that makes them ignoring all factors against it.
While TC-JBH is not in the database, a beautiful inflight picture made by Boeing of it flying over Washington has been used in 727 related PR. The picture is for instance featured in the silver "Airline markings 6" picture book on the 727.
nobody has ever died from hard work, but why take the risk?
IDAWA From Italy, joined Aug 2004, 303 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (8 years 3 months 3 weeks 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 8695 times:
Quoting Bennett123 (Reply 2): According to Aviation Disasters by David Gero, it hit the mountain at 3700 feet, and was 65M N of it's intended destination.
Does this book have any more details on the accident?
Quoting Mbg (Reply 6): I seriously doubt AYT had any type of radar at the time. Can't recall the source, but I recently read that the pilots were using incorrect aeronautical charts. Wouldn't count on it though.
I've flown that route many times, day and night, and still find it extremely difficult to understand how 3 trained officers could mistake Isparta with Antalya, or use incorrect charts.
I've been wondering about that for years. Do you know how can I have access to the Final Report by the Turkish Aviation Authority? There should be one somewhere...
Quoting Mbg (Reply 6): I'm sorry for your loss IDAWA.
CV990 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (8 years 3 months 3 weeks 19 hours ago) and read 8552 times:
Maybe you should also get Air Disasters Nr. 4, this is an overall of some accidents in late 40's until early 70's. Very nice information, I was very pleased with the Grand Canyon mid air colision and also the Lockheed L188 Electra saga!
Bennett123 From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2004, 7204 posts, RR: 3
Reply 12, posted (8 years 3 months 2 weeks 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 8350 times:
"Soon after the investigation of the the crash began, it became apparent that in the darkness and clear weather conditions the crew had mistaken Isparta for Antalya, resulting in a descent below the obstructing terrain".