This was the fourth crash landing of an MD-11 that led to either fatalities or to the destruction of the aircraft. Two previous crashes involved FedEx Express, a July 1997 crash in Newark, New Jersey, and an October 1999 landing overrun at Subic Bay Airport in the Philippines. No one was killed in these two events. An August 1999 China Airlines crash landing in Hong Kong during a rain storm led to the death of three of the passengers on board. There have been three fatal crashes involving passengers, the most recent being the Hong Kong crash.
About two hundred MD-11s were built, and about 182 are currently in service. FedEx Express operates the world's largest MD-11 fleet with about 57 active aircraft. Well over half of all active MD-11s are flying as dedicated cargo aircraft, with many of them being converted passenger airliners (including about 19 aircraft operated by Lufthansa Cargo). In addition to the two MD-11 crashes, NTSB records indicate that FedEx MD-11 aircraft have been in at least five other landing incidents or accidents involving either a bounced landing or a tail strike.
Watch or listen to the AirSafe.com report on this accident below:
Audio: MP3 | Video: iPod/MP4 | WMV | YouTube
23 March 2009 Crash of a FedEx MD-11 near Tokyo
For more videos, visit the AirSafe.com YouTube channel.
Other FedEx Express Plane Crashes
Other MD-11 Plane Crashes
Coincidentally, just a few hours after the FedEx Express crash, a Pilatus PC-12 aircraft crashed on approach to Butte, Montana. The aircraft had been on a flight from Orovile, California to Bozeman, Montana. The pilot changed the flight plane to Butte, MT, and the aircraft crashed about 500 feet (150 meters) from the airport. All 14 on board were killed, including several children.