Spantax Flight 995

Spantax Flight 995 was a charter flight from Madrid-Barajas Airport to New York via Málaga Airport on September 13, 1982. When the DC-10 aircraft was rolling for take-off from Malaga, the pilot felt a strong and worsening vibration and aborted the take-off. The flight crew lost control of the aircraft and were unable to stop in the runway available and the aircraft overran the runway, hit an airfield aerial installation, losing an engine, then crossed the Malaga–Torremolinos Highway, hitting a number of vehicles before finally hitting a railway embankment and bursting into flames. An emergency evacuation of the aircraft was carried out but 50 on board died of both burns and other injuries. A further 110 people were hospitalized.[2][3]

Spantax Flight 995
Spantax McDonnell Douglas DC-10 EC-DEG.jpg
The aircraft involved, 1981
Date13 September 1982
SummaryAborted take-off
SiteMálaga Airport, Málaga, Spain
36°39′48″N 4°29′03″W / 36.66333°N 4.48417°W / 36.66333; -4.48417Coordinates: 36°39′48″N 4°29′03″W / 36.66333°N 4.48417°W / 36.66333; -4.48417
Total fatalities50
Total injuries111
Aircraft typeMcDonnell Douglas DC-10-30CF
Flight originMadrid–Barajas Airport, Madrid, Spain
StopoverMálaga Airport, Málaga, Spain
DestinationJohn F. Kennedy International Airport, New York City, New York, United States
Ground casualties
Ground injuries1

The cause of the accident was the detachment of fragments from a recapped tread on the right wheel of the nose gear, creating a strong vibration. Standard procedure calls for takeoff to continue after V1, and the pilots initially followed such; however, the vibration severely worsened upon rotation, and so, not knowing the cause of the vibration, the captain aborted the takeoff, despite having passed Vr. Later investigations determined that this was reasonable under the abnormal circumstances.[1] It was noted that pilot training only covered engine failures on take-off and there was a lack of training on wheel failures.[4]

An audio-visual specialist at Pace University, Carlton Maloney, was recording audiotape during the accident as part of a series of recordings of airplane takeoffs and landings. As it became clear that something was going wrong, he began to report on the incident and its immediate aftermath. Chicago DJ Steve Dahl played Maloney's tape on his 26 March 2010 podcast.[5][6]


  1. ^ a b "Accident Report on Spantax Flight 995" (PDF). Civil Aviation Accident and Incident Investigation Commission. Archived (PDF) from the original on 27 February 2012. Retrieved 22 April 2010.
  2. ^ Ranter, Harro. "ASN Aircraft accident McDonnell Douglas DC-10-30CF EC-DEG Málaga Airport (AGP)". Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved 11 October 2020.
  3. ^ Lafuente, Ismael Fuente; Marin, Joaquin (13 September 1982). "Un 'jumbo' de Iberia trasladó anoche a Nueva York a la mayor parte de los supervivientes del accidente de Málaga" [An Iberia 'jumbo' moved most of the survivors of the Malaga accident to New York last night]. El País (in Spanish). ISSN 1134-6582. Retrieved 11 October 2020.
  4. ^ UK CAA Document CAA 429 World Airline Accident Summary (ICAO Summary 1985-5)
  5. ^ "A Grisly Triptych of Disasters". Time Magazine. 27 September 1982. Archived from the original on 25 October 2012. Retrieved 30 July 2008.
  6. ^ "Steve Dahl on WJMK discusses the accident and the Carlton Maloney audio (hour 4, 2:20 and 28:08).". Steve Dahl Show. Chicago. 30 July 2008. WJMK. Transcript. Retrieved 30 July 2008.[dead link]

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