Date: December 22, 1996
Time: 1810
Location: Narrows, Virginia
Operator: Airborne Express
Flight #: 827
Route: Test flight
AC Type: McDonnell Douglas DC-8-63F
Registration: N827AX
cn / ln: 45901/293
Aboard: 6   (passengers:3  crew:3)
Fatalities: 6   (passengers:3  crew:3)
Ground: 0
Summary: The cargo plane struck mountainous terrain after experiencing a stall during tests. The inappropriate control inputs applied by the flying pilot during a stall recovery attempt, the failure of the non-flying pilot-in-command to recognize, address and correct these inappropriate control inputs, and the failure of Airborne Express to establish a formal, functional evaluation flight program that included adequate program guidelines, requirements and pilot training for performance of these flights. Contributing to the cause of the accident were the inoperative stick shaker stall warning system and Airborne Express DC-8 flight training simulator's inadequate fidelity in reproducing the airplane's stall characteristics.

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