Miami Air Flight 293

Miami Air Flight 293 was a military charter from Guantanamo Bay to Naval Air Station Jacksonville, operated by Miami Air International. On 3 May 2019, the Boeing 737-800 aircraft operating the flight overshot the runway on landing. Twenty-one people were injured. The aircraft was written off, making it the 17th loss of a Boeing 737-800.[1]

Miami Air Flight 293
Aircraft resting site in the St. Johns River
The aircraft resting in the St. Johns River
Date3 May 2019
SummaryRunway excursion under investigation
SiteSt John's River, Jacksonvile, Florida
Aircraft typeBoeing 737-800
OperatorMiami Air International
IATA flight No.LL293
ICAO flight No.BSK293
Call signBISCAYNE 293
Flight originLeeward Point Field, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba
DestinationNaval Air Station Jacksonville, Florida, United States
Survivors143 (all)


Miami Air Flight 293 was a supplemental non-scheduled passenger flight from Leeward Point Field, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba to Naval Air Station Jacksonville, Florida. It served to transport military personnel and related civilians.[2] The aircraft, a Boeing 737-800, skidded off the runway at Jacksonville into the St. Johns River while attempting to land in a thunderstorm. Emergency services, including more than 50 firefighters, rescued all 136 passengers and seven crew.[3]

The plane was never submerged; however, many passengers in the front and mid section of the plane were soaked when brackish water entered through breaches in the fuselage. There was also several inches of water in the rows in the back of the plane[4] Twenty-one people were injured and transported to the hospital, but there were no critical injuries.[4][5] At least three pets transported in the hold of the aircraft are presumed to have died.[6] Authorities were concerned about fuel spreading in the river and worked to contain it.[4][7]


N732MA Miami Air International 2001 Boeing 737-81Q C-N 30618 "Lois Too" (6810862839)
N732MA, the aircraft involved in the accident, seen in 2012

The accident aircraft was a Boeing 737-81Q, registration N732MA, MSN 30618, Line Number 830. The aircraft had first flown on April 12, 2001.[1] It had entered service with Miami Air on April 26, 2001. At the time of the accident, it had flown for 38,928 hours 57 minutes in 15,610 flights.[8]


Miami Air Flight 293 crash site (46857358255)
Aerial view (facing west) of N732MA in the St. Johns River following the runway excursion from NAS Jacksonville Runway 28/10

The accident is being investigated by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), Boeing, and the United States Navy.[4][9][10] Initial reports of the investigation focused on a possible failure of the thrust reverser and the pilot's request to change runways.[11]

The right hand thrust reverser was inoperative at the time of takeoff, as allowed per the master minimum equipment list, which made the thrust reversers unavailable after the aircraft landed.[1]

During the landing approach, the pilot checked in with the Jacksonville tower at 9:22:19 PM; the approach controller advised the pilot to land on Runway 28.[8] The recorded weather conditions at 9:22 PM included heavy rain and thunderstorms with wind from 350° at 4 kn (7.4 km/h; 4.6 mph). Thunderstorms had begun at 9:04 PM.[8] Although the aircraft was advised to land on Runway 28 (east to west), which is 9,000 ft (2,700 m) long, the pilot requested if the opposite direction (west to east, designated Runway 10) was available at 9:23:25 PM; the tower advised the pilot that rain was building approximately 5 miles (8.0 km) from the approach to Runway 10.[8] In addition, using Runway 10 would reduce the available landing distance to 7,800 ft (2,400 m) due to the displaced threshold resulting from the presence of arresting gear at the west end of the runway.[1]

At 9:24:55 PM, the pilot radioed the tower again to get advice on whether to use Runway 28 or 10; the tower controller said both were "pretty rough" and "pretty socked in", but the winds continued to favor the use of 28. The tower directed the pilot to turn right to a heading of 010° and descend and maintain an altitude of 3,000 ft (910 m) at 9:26:11 PM; tower control then directed the pilot to a heading of 040° at 9:27:56 PM.[8] At 9:30:03 PM, the controller advised the pilot the storm was moving east, favoring the approach to Runway 10, and the pilot agreed to redirect to 10. After the pilot was handed off to the radar controller, radar control cleared the aircraft for landing at 9:39:49 PM.[8]

Post-accident investigation showed the aircraft touched down approximately 1,600 feet (490 m) beyond the displaced threshold and veered right, reaching approximately 75 feet (23 m) from the Runway 10 centerline at a point 6,200 feet (1,900 m) from the displaced threshold. At that point, the aircraft had departed from the runway surface, later striking the seawall/embankment.[8]

A week after the accident, the aircraft was lifted onto a barge and floated up the St. Johns River and moved to shore at Reynolds Industrial Park in Green Cove Springs. After an investigation by the NTSB, the plane will be scrapped.[12] The NTSB issued an update to their investigation on May 23, 2019.[8]


 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the National Transportation Safety Board.

  1. ^ a b c d "N732MA accident description". Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved May 4, 2019.
  2. ^ Vassolo, Martin. "Plane carrying 143 slides off runway into river in Jacksonville. No one killed, sheriff says". Miami Herald. Retrieved May 4, 2019.
  3. ^ "Boeing 737 skids into Florida river". BBC. May 4, 2019. Retrieved May 4, 2019.
  4. ^ a b c d Zaveri, Mihir; Kramer, Margaret (May 3, 2019). "Boeing 737 Skids Into St. Johns River in Jacksonville". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved May 4, 2019.
  5. ^ "A Plane Carrying 143 People Slid Off A Runway And Into A River In Florida". BuzzFeed News. Retrieved May 4, 2019.
  6. ^ "Pets aboard the plane that crashed into Florida river are presumed dead". The Washington Post. May 5, 2019.
  7. ^ Scanlan, Dan. "Airliner skids into St. Johns River at NAS Jacksonville". The Florida Times-Union. Retrieved May 4, 2019.
  8. ^ a b c d e f g h "Investigative Update - 5/23/2019" (PDF). National Transportation Safety Board. May 23, 2019. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  9. ^ Osborne, Mark. "Plane skids off runway into water; only minor injuries". ABC News. Retrieved May 4, 2019.
  10. ^ "Boeing 737 Plane With 143 On Board Skids Into St. Johns River In Jacksonville". NPR. Retrieved May 4, 2019.
  11. ^ "Landing feature failed on Florida plane". BBC News. May 6, 2019.
  12. ^ Ready, Jennifer (May 9, 2019). "Crews Hoist crashed Boeing 737 to land". News 4 Jacksonville. News 4 Jax. Retrieved May 15, 2019.

External links

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Flight 293

Flight 293 may refer to:

Northwest Orient Airlines Flight 293, crashed on 3 June 1963

American Airlines Flight 293, hijacked on 20 June 1979

Miami Air Flight 293, crashed on 3 May 2019

List of accidents and incidents involving the Boeing 737

The following is a list of accidents and incidents involving the Boeing 737 family of jet airliners, including the Boeing 737 Original (737-100/200), Boeing 737 Classic (737-300/-400/-500), Boeing 737 Next Generation (737-600/-700/-800/-900) and Boeing 737 Max (737-MAX -7/-8/-200/-9/-10) series of aircraft.

The 737 series is the best-selling commercial jetliner in history, with the first unit having first entered airline service in February 1968 and the 10,000th unit entering service in March 2018. The first accident involving a 737 was on July 19, 1970, when a 737-200 was damaged beyond repair during an aborted takeoff, with no fatalities; the first fatal accident occurred on December 8, 1972, when United Airlines Flight 553 crashed while attempting to land, with 45 (43 onboard plus 2 on the ground) fatalities; and, as of October 2019, the largest loss of life was an accident on October 29, 2018, when Lion Air Flight 610, a 737 MAX 8, crashed into the Java Sea shortly after takeoff, with 189 fatalities. The most recent crash was on May 3, 2019, when Miami Air Flight 293 skidded off the runway and crashed into the St. John river.

Several accidents of the original and Classic series 737s were due to a design flaw in a power control unit (PCU) causing uncommanded rudder movement under thermal shock: see Boeing 737 rudder issues for further info.

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