Date: December 28, 1978
Location: Portland, Oregon
Operator: United Air Lines
Flight #: 173
Route: Denver - Portland
AC Type: McDonnell Douglas DC-8-61
cn / ln: 45972/357
Aboard: 189 (passengers:181 crew:8)
Fatalities: 10 (passengers:8 crew:2)
Summary: While on a flight from Denver to Portland, the aircraft ran out of fuel while the crew was distracted with a landing gear problem. Failure of the captain to monitor properly the aircraft’s fuel state and to properly respond to the low fuel state as indicated by other crew members. Contributing to the accident was the failure of the other two flight crew members either to fully comprehend the criticality of the fuel state or to successfully communicate their concern to the captain.
I remember that it was determined that there was going to have to be “training” for crews in order to be more assertive with the captain when telling him that “We’re running out of gas!”... LOL...
“Failure of the captain to monitor properly the aircrafts fuel state and to properly respond to the low fuel state as indicated by other crew members.”
Do suppose the United captain was a former Air Force colonel? Perhaps there’s a common thread here.
Yeah, that United captain was flying like a stroke patient. A classic CRM (cockpit resources management) failure. Nowadays, with armed flight deck crewmembers, the result would be very different. ;-)