American B752 over Venezuela on Aug 30th 2014, severe turbulence causes loss of 7500 feet

Last Update: September 6, 2014 / 15:21:07 GMT/Zulu time

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Incident Facts

Date of incident
Aug 30, 2014

Classification
Incident

Flight number
AA-213

Destination
Brasilia, Brazil

Aircraft Registration
N177AN

Aircraft Type
Boeing 757-200

ICAO Type Designator
B752

An American Airlines Boeing 757-200, registration N177AN performing flight AA-213 (dep Aug 29th) from Miami,FL (USA) to Brasilia,DF (Brazil), was enroute at FL350 about 160nm west of Caracas (Venezuela) when the aircraft lost more than 7500 feet within a minute. The crew recovered the aircraft below FL275, then radioed "We lost altitude due to severe turbulence and are climbing back to FL350". The aircraft levelled off at FL350 about 10 minutes after departing FL350 and continued the flight to Brasilia for a safe landing without further incident.

A source told The Aviation Herald, that the aircraft lost more than 5000 feet (radar data confirming the information and identifying more than 7500 feet of loss of altitude). The altitude excursion caused a conflict with other traffic.

ATC recordings of Maiquetia Area Control do not indicate the controller had any concern of a possible conflict and did not use compromised separation recovery procedures. Another American Airlines Boeing 767-300 at FL340 heading north was already north of AA-213 when the altitude excursion began.

Passenger Marcelo Oliveira reported, that the massive turbulence encounter, the strongest he had ever felt, lasted for what felt like 20 minutes but at most were 2 minutes. The aircraft was shaking heavily and "pointing down". After the aircraft was recovered the flight continued smoothly to Brasilia. The passenger met the crew the following morning, in discussion with the crew it emerged the crew felt the aircraft may have come close to its structural limits during the turbulence encounter, the aircraft had to undergo a severe turbulence inspection in Brasilia causing the return flight to be cancelled. The crew told the passenger that another aircraft was flying above AA-213 but should not have had such impact on them.

According to radar data an American Airlines Boeing 777-200, registration N768AA performing flight AA-995 from Miami to Sao Paulo Guarulhos,SP (Brazil) was flying southbound at FL390 about 21nm and 3-4 minutes ahead of AA-213 on exactly the same track.

The occurrence aircraft remained on the ground in Brasilia until September 4th, positioned back to Miami as flight AA-9621 and resumed service in the early morning of Sep 5th 2014.
Incident Facts

Date of incident
Aug 30, 2014

Classification
Incident

Flight number
AA-213

Destination
Brasilia, Brazil

Aircraft Registration
N177AN

Aircraft Type
Boeing 757-200

ICAO Type Designator
B752

This article is published under license from Avherald.com. © of text by Avherald.com.
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