The United States (US) National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has clarified that an Alaska Airlines Boeing 737-800 did not suffer a hard landing, noting that a fractured pin caused the landing gear to collapse upon landing in California.
The incident happened at John Wayne-Orange County Airport (SNA) in August 2023. The Alaska Airlines Boeing 737-800, registered as N516AS, was operating the regularly scheduled flight AS1288 from Seattle Tacoma International Airport (SEA) to SNA when the left-hand main landing gear (MLG) collapsed upon landing.
According to the NTSB, the flight crew reported that prior to landing at SNA, everything was normal. Weather conditions included “moderate rain, shifting winds, light turbulence, and instrument meteorological conditions until the aircraft broke out at about 800 feet above ground level (AGL)”.
And while the weather improved, both pilots “discussed that a firm touchdown was appropriate”.
Furthermore, the first officer told the NTSB that all systems were operational, including “all of the landing gear position indicator lights were green, indicating both MLG and the nose gear were in their down and locked position”.
Following touchdown, the captain noted that he felt a “firm jolt feeling”, with the aircraft veering “reasonably hard” to the left, with the pilot counteracting that movement with his rudder pedals, keeping it on the runway center line. The captain told investigators that at first he told the first officer he thought the aircraft had a flat tire on the MLG.
Video footage from inside the cabin at the time of the incident were shared on X (formerly Twitter), depicting the aircraft landing and the left-hand MLG spitting out sparks as it rolled down the runway immediately after touchdown.
Major damage received by the 2008 built Alaska Airlines Boeing 737-800 aircraft (N516AS) due to heavy landing on runway 20R at Santa Ana John Wayne Airport,…