AA BDL MD-80 Incident

From:         "Joseph D. Farrell" <erisajd@Neca.com>
Organization: Benefits Litigation Concepts
Date:         21 Nov 95 01:19:24 
Followups:    1 2 3 4
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For those of you who may have heard of this, on 12 Nov @ 01.45 local an
AA MD80, operating as AA1572 ORD-BDL clipped the top of a ridge, shearing
off 13 feet of tree-tops making an approach to RWY 15 @ BDL.  There is NO
published instrument approach to this Runway.  Their is a VOR/TACAN
approach to R15 which requires a minimum altitude of 2000 feet at 10 miles
decreasing to 1080 feet at the point at which the impact with ground 720
AGL/780 feet above tree-tops.

My problem with this is that at that time winds were 120-160, 25kts gusting
to 44 kts, and the ceiling was 740 feet.  What oin gods green earth were
the pilots doing accepting a nonI-LS approach into these conditions with
the obstacle less than 4 miles from their touchdown with only a working
localizer.  I'm sorry, but this was not a safe approach into these
conditions, it may be legal since the controllers cleared the a/c, but
was it safe is another issue.  Check the BDL R15 VOR/TACAN approach in
the Terminal Procedures pubs, for this a/c legal minimums were NOT
available at the time of the final approach.