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DC10, Tahiti French Polynesia, 2000

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On 24 December 2000, a Hawaiian Airlines DC10 overran the runway at Tahiti after landing long on a wet runway having encountered crosswinds and turbulence on approach in thunderstorms.
Event Details
When December 2000
Actual or Potential
Event Type
Runway Excursion, Weather
Day/Night Night
Flight Conditions On Ground - Normal Visibility
Flight Details
Operator Hawaiian Airlines
Domicile United States
Type of Flight Public Transport (Passenger)
Origin Honolulu International Airport
Intended Destination Fa'a'ā International Airport
Take off Commenced Yes
Flight Airborne Yes
Flight Completed No
Flight Phase Landing
Location - Airport
Airport Fa'a'ā International Airport
Tag(s) Approach not stabilised
Tag(s) Overrun on Landing,
Late Touchdown,
Significant Crosswind Component
Tag(s) Strong Surface Winds
Tag(s) RFFS Procedures
Damage or injury Yes
Aircraft damage Major
Non-aircraft damage Yes
Causal Factor Group(s)
Group(s) Aircraft Operation
Safety Recommendation(s)
Group(s) Aircraft Operation,
Airport Management
Investigation Type
Type Independent


On 24th December 2000, a Hawaiian Airlines MCDONNELL DOUGLAS DC-10 overran the runway at Tahiti after landing long on a wet runway having encountered crosswinds and turbulence on approach in thunderstorms.


This is an extract of the synopsis from the official report into the incident published by the French Bureau d'Enquêtes et d'Analyses (BEA).

"While landing on runway 04, in a storm, the airplane touched down about halfway down the runway. It overran the end of the runway and came to a stop resting on its engines, its nose in the lagoon."

The Report's conclusions include:

  • "During the final approach, the airplane entered an area of rain and turbulence associated with the presence of a storm.
  • The runway was wet, the wind was blowing from the left at the threshold of runway 04 and was between 18 and 28 kts51.856 km/h <br />14.392 m/s <br />.
  • Due to the difficulties in controlling the airplane, thrust reduction was late.
  • The touchdown of the main landing gear wheels occurred about one thousand three hundred meters [4000 feet] after the displaced threshold of runway 04.
  • Landing with a crosswind on the wet runway with a low vertical speed made it impossible for the spoilers to be deployed automatically.
  • The flight engineer extended the spoilers manually eight seconds after touchdown of the main landing gear wheels.
  • The airplane touched down to the right of the runway centerline, then its track veered to the left before coming back towards the center.
  • The airplane left the runway along the extended centerline then came to a stop with its nose in the lagoon.

The Report states the cause of the accident to have been:

"The accident was caused by the failure, during the preparation for the approach, to take into account the risk of a storm passing over the airfield at the time of landing."

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