Broken pin in landing gear discovered after jetliner landed in Southern California, came to rest on engine

WASHINGTON (AP) — According to investigators, a pin broke inside the left landing gear of an Alaska Airlines plane that crashed into one of its engines after landing in California last month.

During Tropical Storm Hilary, the two pilots on the Boeing 737 discussed the need for a “firm” landing, and the captain felt a “firm jolt feeling” when the plane touched down at John Wayne Airport in Orange County.

The National Transportation Safety Board said in a preliminary report Monday that data from the plane indicated that the touchdown force was within the airline’s limits.

According to the pilots, cockpit indicators showed that both the main landing gear and the nose gear were down and locked. After landing, the captain informed the co-pilot that the plane appeared to have a flat tire on the left side, and the crew noticed the plane listing to the left.

When the plane came to a stop on a taxiway, the captain opened a window and saw the plane resting on the housing surrounding the left engine. The pilots turned off both engines, and passengers exited the plane on the taxiway.

According to the NTSB, no injuries were reported among the 106 passengers and six crew members on the August 20 flight.

According to the NTSB, the gear assembly punched through the top of the left wing due to a broken trunnion pin in the left landing gear.

The board stated that it will continue to look into the incident.

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