737 Crash In Colorado Springs

From:         rbarnick@mitre.org (Barnick, R.)
Organization: MITRE
Date:         10 Dec 92 16:07:19 PST
Followups:    1 2 3
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In March 1991 a UAL 737 went down on final approach into COS.  The final
accident investigation report was released a couple of days ago and carried
no cause.  About four months ago a TWA flight leaving COS picked up a
federal investigator working the accident.  The investigator sat up front
in the jump seat.  The TWA flight deck crew wanted to know how the
investigation was going.  The following was relayed to me via one of the
flight crew members.

UAL recently lost some kind of case from its female employees which charged
gender discrimination.  UAL either lost or agreed to settle out of court. 
UAL agreed to correct conditions which caused the suit.  One correction was
to get more females in the cockpit.  The ill-fated 737 had a very junior
female first officer.  The pilot was male and also junior.  Cockpit voice
recordings (never yet fully released to public) indicated that when the
crew was informed of very gusty wind conditions in the COS area, they
seemed overly concerned.  They kept commenting about the wind.  These
frequent comments seemed irregular to the investigators.  Experienced
pilots wouldn't have spent so much time discussing the wind.  On final it
was speculated the aircraft took a good jolt from an air current or eddy. 
The crew, having psyched themselves up substantially, reacted in some
uncoordinated knee-jerk fashion resulting in the fatal error.  The
investigator went on to say that even if this sort of story could be
proven, it would never be made public.  To do would discredit UAL's gender
action, UAL's training, FAA's certification, and maybe further hurt an
already hurting industry.  

It seems odd that the final accident report that came out indeed did say

Please remember, this is a story told me second hand.  You're getting it
third hand.  But, if any truth about this crash is known, a sharing thought
would be interesting.