June 26, 1988
Habsheim, France
Air France, Flight 296Q
Airbus A320-111

The plane was scheduled to perform a series of fly-bys at an air show. The plane was to descend to 100 ft. altitude with landing gear and flaps extended. The automatic go-around protection (Alpha Floor function) was inhibited for the maneuver. During the maneuver, the plane descended thru 100 ft. to an altitude of 30 feet and hit trees at the end of the runway. The aircraft was totally destroyed by the successive impacts and violent fire which followed. The pilot allowed the aircraft to descend through 100 ft. at slow speed and maximum angle of attack and was late in applying go-around power. Unfamiliarity of the crew with the landing field and lack of planning for the flyby.  Miraculously, only 3 aboard were killed.

Portions translated from French
12.44:27 TOWER QNH Habsheim 1012 Fox Echo 9.8.4
  Captain OK
12.44:31 Co-pilot Roger
12.44:32 Captain 9.8.4 put in 9.8.4
12.44:34 Co-pilot 9.8.4 QFE selected!
12.44:37   Good gear is down; flaps 2!
12.44:42 Captain Flaps 3
12.44:45 Co-pilot Flaps 3!
  Captain That's the airfield, you confirm?
12.44:48 Co-pilot Affirmative
12.44:51 Co-pilot You see it LL 01, when we get there you're at 1 nautical mile, that's right.
12.45:19.1 Radio altimeter [Forty]
12.45:04.7   [GONG!] - GPWS cut off
12.45:05.7 Radio altimeter [Two hundred]
12.45.11 Co-pilot P.....G.....! (name of flight safety officer)
12.45:11.4 Radio altimeter [Two hundred]
12.45.12 Co-pilot G.. is going to ...eh!
12.45:14 Co-pilot OK, you're at 100ft there, watch, watch
12.45:13 Radio altimeter [One hundred]
12.45:19.1 Radio altimeter [Forty]
12.45:23.6 Radio altimeter [Fifty]
12.45:26 Captain OK ,I'm OK there, disconnect autothrottle
12.45:27.5 Radio altimeter [Forty]
12.45:32 Co-pilot Watch out for those pylons ahead, eh. See them?
12.45:33 Captain Yeah, yeah, don't worry.
12.45:34.5   [Clack! Clack! Clack!] - power lever dentents
12.45:35.3 Radio altimeter [Thirty]
12.45:36.2 Radio altimeter TOGA/SRS
12.45:38.3 Radio altimeter [Thirty]
12.45:39 Captain Go around track
12.45:39.9 Captain Shit!
12.45:41.5   END OF TAPE

Back to Last Words