Cleared to Collide: The crash of USAir flight 1493 and SkyWest flight 5569, or the Los Angeles Runway Disaster

The wreckage of USAir flight 1493 lies where it came to rest after colliding with a commuter plane at LAX. (Adrian Cottrell)
N388US, the USAir Boeing 737 involved in the accident. (Werner Fischdick)
The route of USAir flight 1493. (Google, annotations mine)
N683AV, the SkyWest Metroliner involved in the accident. (Fergus Abraham)
The planned route of SkyWest flight 5569. (Google, annotations mine)
Diagram of relevant aircraft movements in the north complex — 1/3 (own work)
Diagram of relevant aircraft movements in the north complex — 2/3 (own work)
Diagram of relevant aircraft movements in the north complex — 3/3 (own work)
This CGI animation of the collision appeared in Mayday season 9 episode 4.
Map of the accident scene and wreckage. (NTSB)
Firefighters examine the cockpit after putting out the fire. (ABC News)
An excerpt from the ATC transcript reveals how Wascher (“LC2”) remained calm after the crash. (NTSB)
The Metroliner’s left engine and propeller were found underneath the left wing of the 737. The Metroliner’s right propeller was found embedded in the 737’s right engine nacelle. (Bureau off Aircraft Accidents Archives)
After the evacuation was over, the tail section collapsed to the ground after being heavily damaged by fire. (Adrian Cottrell)
The Metroliner’s left wing, including the left main gear and left engine, were wrapped around the 737’s left main landing gear strut. (AP)
From this image, it’s apparent why Captain Shaw was killed on impact. (Los Angeles Fire Department)
This map of the seating locations of the survivors and victims reveals that loss of life was heaviest in the front, where the smoke was thickest and the emergency lights didn’t work. (Various Wikimedia users based on NTSB materials)
Diagram of the various exterior lights on a Fairchild Metroliner. (NTSB)
Robin Wascher testifies at the NTSB hearing on the accident. (The Weather Channel)
Another aerial view of the wreckage. (NTSB)
Firefighters examine the cockpit of the 737. (Bureau of Aircraft Accidents Archives)
The burned-out hulk of the 737 dwarfs officials’ cars near the scene of the accident. (Bureau of Aircraft Accidents Archives)
A panorama of all the vehicles which responded to the accident. (Bureau of Aircraft Accidents Archives)
Another view of the forward section. (Chris Harms/AP via Shutterstock)
Yet another shot of the forward section. Note the firefighter standing on the wing. (Kevork Djansezian/AP via Shutterstock)
Firefighters examine the tail section. A white sheet covers wreckage from the Metroliner, possibly including human remains. (AP via Shutterstock)
The R2 exit, from which 17 people escaped. The slide was used during the evacuation, but was later exposed to fire and melted. (AP via Shutterstock)
Firefighters examine the cockpit of the 737. (AP via Shutterstock)
Even after seeing all these pictures, it’s hard to visualize that most of the Metroliner was under there somewhere. (Reed Saxon/AP via Shutterstock)

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Analyzer of plane crashes and author of upcoming book (eventually™). Contact me via @Admiral_Cloudberg on Reddit or by email at kylanddempsey@gmail.com.

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Admiral Cloudberg

Admiral Cloudberg

8.9K Followers

Analyzer of plane crashes and author of upcoming book (eventually™). Contact me via @Admiral_Cloudberg on Reddit or by email at kylanddempsey@gmail.com.