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9th of January 2001, Corrosion, Blog #633

A, more than 19-year-old, Boeing 727-287 was scheduled to operate a scheduled passenger flight from Buenos Aires (Argentina) to Santa Cruz (Bolivia) 22 years ago.

The aircraft shortly after the completion of the evacuation following the landing gear failure. (Source; © Unknown)

As the 146 passengers boarded the cabin crew of five saw to it that the boarding of the 138 passengers went smoothly, while the cockpit crew completed their cockpit preparations for the approximately 1060 nm (1960 kilometre) flight. After all three Pratt & Whitney JT8D-17 engines were started the aircraft started to taxi towards runway 11. While taxiing the left main landing gear failed, the cockpit crew subsequently actioned the evacuating checklist ordering an aircraft evacuation. All 138 passengers and eight crew evacuated the aircraft safely.

The aircraft shortly after the completion of the evacuation following the landing gear failure. (Source; © Unknown)

The aircraft was seriously damaged, so much so that it was written off as damaged beyond repair. The accident was investigated and it was determined that the forward trunnion bearing support fitting of the landing gear failed due to intergranular corrosion.

Metals are made from different metals, al these metals have crystals, also called grains, which are separated by their respective crystal/grain boundaries. Intergranular corrosion occurs when these boundaries get distorted, this can have several causes;

  • Production errors, causing impurities in the material

  • Enrichment of an element in an alloy

  • Depletion on an element in an alloy

It is unclear what the cause was for the intergranular corrosion that resulted in the failure of the landing gear of the Boeing 727. ** Editorial note **

V2 Aviation - Training & Maintenance has not been able to obtain an investigation report on this accident. This blog is therefore based on several internet sources. Should there be an inconsistency in the blog don't hesitate to get in touch with us. There are two possibilities to do that, via the comments function at the bottom of this page or via the contact page of the website.

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