A Republic Airways Embraer E175, operating for American Airlines, was climbing out of Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport on the 6th of November when the pilots encountered severe control problems.
The aircraft, registered N117HQ, was performing flight AA4439 from Atlanta to New York La Guardia with six people on board. Whilst climbing out of Atlanta’s runway 09L, the pilots declared an emergency reporting that they had a runaway trim situation.
Stopping the climb at 14,000 feet, the pilots prepared for a landing on Atlanta’s runway 10; some time later, air traffic control cleared the pilots for a right downwind. When responding, the pilots reported that they were in a stalling situation and couldn’t lower their pitch.
As a result of the severity of the situation, air traffic control offered runway 08L, 10 and 09R and could clear anyone out of the way if required.
Fighting to get the aircraft to descend, the pilots advised air traffic control that they were able to turn and receive vectors to runway 10. Whilst preparing for a landing, the aircraft began to climb again before suddenly entering a descent.
The pilots received a system warning and worked checklists to terminate it. The problem was now under control and the pilots flew the aircraft to join final approach for runway 10.
Air traffic control emphasised that both 10 and 09R were freely open to land on, should the pilots encounter additional control problems; however the aircraft landed safely on runway 10 roughly 19 minutes after departure.
No information has been released about the passengers however they were likely placed on other flights. The problematic aircraft still remains on the ground.
An investigation will likely be opened by the Federal Aviation Administration to determine the cause of the incident.
On November 12th an Air Astana Embraer E190 also suffered from extreme control problems, with the pilots preparing to ditch in the water. You can read more about this here:
Information sourced from The Aviation Herald.
Cover photo by Formulanone.