American Eagle ERJ gear up landing at BOS

News link (Ignore the cookie prompts until after you’ve viewed it, blocking the cookies makes the site go away)
Watch the video above first.


  1. I find it extremely unlikely that it is physically possible for the gear to indicate down when it is not down and locked. That’s the whole point of the indicating system.

  2. If the pilots knew there was a gear issue, why on earth did they drag the belly on the ground, and THEN choose to go around. Sounds extremely unsafe.

  3. If the pilots did not know the gear was unsafe, at what point did they realize? My guess would be another airplane and/or ATC told them to go around. The spool-up time on turbine engines would limit the reaction from the time the belly starts dragging to the time the airplane becomes airborne again.

  4. Referencing #4, how the hell could they not know the gear is unsafe!? Besides the aerodynamics, the gear unsafe warning horn, and the EGPWS yelling “TOO LOW, GEAR…TOO LOW, GEAR!” My guess is they knew there was an issue, but that still leaves question #2.

  5. Since when is the ERJ capable of dumping fuel? :unamused: That seemed to be the only major error in this story, so I guess they’re getting batter. At least they didn’t call it a twin engine Cessna.

Link to Tower communications:

News Video of the landing sparks and all (still pics):

Gear indication down?? Its an Embraer, anything is possible.

You can see in the picture that the nose gear doors are open. The only way to get them open is to have the gear handle down or to be using the emergency gear extention. The nose wheel doors being open are loud and give a false sence the the gear did come down.

For some reason the gear was indicating down and safe. This would get rid of all other aural warnings. NTSB found the same thing on test in hanger (unconfirmed).

Another message board said that they got an unsafe indication just before landing and went around. The plane hit the ground in the process.

I can’t see how it is physically possible for them to have had 3 green lights with the gear tucked up in the wells. If it is somehow possible, that’s some of the worst engineering I’ve ever heard of.

Every single retractable airplane I’ve flown won’t show a safe indication until the gear has reached that position. It is a physical switch, either connected to some part of the gear system or built inside the gear actuator arm.

Wouldn’t the crew notice the gear extension sound was missing and the lack of air rushing over the gear, no change in air speed after moving the gear handle down??? Just when you think you’ve seen and heard everything!

The nose wheel doors open is pretty loud and would make you think that the gear was down. I haven’t flown the E135 but have 3500 hours in a E120. I believe that it is the same landing gear system. Im not sure how much of a change they would feel in airspeed normally, but having the noise of the nose gear doors and three green lights would fool most pilots.

As far as the indication of three green, it seems pretty weird, but anything is possible when computers are involved.

Here is a email that was sent to eagle Embraer pilots yesterday (got it off

Attention All American Eagle Pilots
Re: Update On Yyz-bos Flight
I Would Like To Provide An Update On The Latest
Developments Regarding The Incident That Occurred With
One Of Our Flights In Boston. As Many Are Probably Aware,
Footage Is Available Depicticting The Aircraft Contacting
The Ground With The Landing Gear Retracted. A Team
Comprised Of Representatives From Ae, Embraer, The Ntsb And
The Faa Have Conducted Tests On The Aircraft To Determine If
Any Mechanical Discrepancies Could Be Found. Initial Result
Indicate A Possible Failure Of A Landing Gear Component That
May Have Given False Indications To The Pilots That The
Landing Gear Was Down And Locked Prior To Landing. We Will
Provide Additional Details As They Become Available.
Thanks For Your Continued Professionalism, And Fly Safe.
Jim Winxxxxx

Yeah something about “Gear Handle Disagree” on the EICAS…

Calm down, cfijames… :smiley:

Maybe someday you can be one of those experts the news stations hire to solve aviation incidents without any facts other than those provided by confused and uninformed reporters :bulb:

This is my understanding:

 The crew selected gear down and verified "three green"

 Below 200 feet they got a LG/LEVER DISAGREE warning but had 3  

 It took a short period of time for it to sink in that they had an 
 impossible combination, after all they are human *just like you!*.
 (Don't argue this point, you'll just look stupid :wink: ) 

 They began a go-around  below 100 feet. :slight_smile: (most likely, the thrust
 was way back :imp: )

 The go around turned into a touch-and-go on the rotating   
 beacon :open_mouth: .  

 They kept their composure and brought the airplane in safely 8) . 

You can ‘would have, should have, could have’ all you want but don’t forget that this all happened in a lot less time than you had to read articles and compose postings. :wink:

As for the landing gear indicating system, it is more involved than just some micro switches and light bulbs as are on your Piper Arrow and Seminole. The switches all report to a processor that compare various switch positions and generate a number of displays, messages, and aural indications. This processor is a single unit. In other words if it produces false information there is no second processor to dispute the results and no third processor to break the tie when the other two dissagree. All you are told is you have three gear down and locked all the way down final and then in the last seconds your told your landing gear lever disagrees with your gear position. You could suspect the gear lever position switch was faulty and land…or…play it safe and go-around…

As it turned out, this one processor wigged out and gave bad information.

Some freindly advice:
Get rid of your superior attitude, it will help you in the long run
Be thankful you didn’t have to go through that crap, I am

I hope you have a long, pleasurable, successful and uneventful pilot carrier! :smiley:

Is this a fact, or are you one of the aviation experts the New stations hire? :question: :question: :question: :question: :question: :question: :question: :question: :question:

I didn’t pick that up, only honest discussion?? But that’s just me.

[voice in background]POPCORN! PEANUTS! GET YOUR HOT POPCORN AND PEANUTS RIGHT HERE!![/voice in background]

LOL NeedleNose! I’ve got extra butter on mine. Need some salt? Scoot over. :wink:

Geez… I was just trying to say that it sounded like a good discussion with honest questions and comments. Although I wouldn’t mind some of that popcorn with that cool butter/salt concoction.

I’m a girl and not a pilot so some of this is over my head. Just know I fly a lot of RJs and perhaps I should stick to Canada Air’s instead of Embraer’s. I never turn down good popcorn when I see it, especially if I get to see some men having the same little snats that girls do. :laughing: Yes, all in good fun and the discussions here usually get the facts on the table and you guys figure it all out, snats or not. I’m impressed at the teamwork.

I’m just waiting for the part where CFIJames responds to EasyVictor’s Post!

He’ll be calm. After all, he’s a pilot. But papa pilot might step in first. :open_mouth: hee hee.

Nah. The boy was raised to fight his own battles.

Well, lookie here! Great timing! :wink:

Have to admit it though, if the NTSB reads this thread, it may answer all their questions about this incident.

                   NTSB ADVISORY

National Transportation Safety Board
Washington, DC 20594
June 29, 2007


Washington, D.C. - The National Transportation Safety Board
is investigating an incident in Boston that occurred on June
20, 2007, in which an American Eagle Embraer ERJ-135
regional jet briefly touched down on the runway without the
landing gear extended before initiating a go-around and
completing a second landing attempt.

    None of the 37 passengers or 3 crewmembers was 

injured. The aircraft sustained minor damage. The event is
being investigated as an incident.

    Prior to the first landing attempt in which the gear 

was not extended, the crew stated that the three landing
gear indicator lights were all green, indicating that the
gear was down and locked. Shortly before touchdown they
noticed a “landing gear lever disagree” message on a flight
computer console.

    After the jet contacted the runway, a go-around 

procedure was initiated. The crew extended the gear by
following the emergency abnormal landing gear procedure,
then flew by the control tower twice for a visual inspection
to ensure the gear was down prior to the second landing

    At this point in the investigation the following has 

been accomplished:

    In an initial test, the incident aircraft was placed 

on jacks and investigators duplicated the in-flight
situation: Three green lights in the cockpit indicated the
gear was down and locked but none of the gear extended.

    The cockpit voice recorder and flight data recorder 

were sent to the Safety Board’s laboratory in Washington
last week where the content of each is being evaluated.

    Both members of the flight crew were interviewed this 


    An electronic component of the landing gear control 

system, made by Parker Aerospace, was bench tested this week
at their facility in New York. The same unit, with small
modifications, was then placed in a different airplane and
the indications were once again duplicated.

    Embraer issued a "Field Service Letter" late last week 

to all operators of the EMB-135, -140, and -145 models,
reminding pilots to follow the checklist in the case of a
“landing gear disagree” message.

    The Federal Aviation Administration, Parker Aerospace, 

American Eagle and Embraer are working with the Safety Board
as the investigation continues.

NTSB Press Contact: Peter Knudson

We should all email Peter and have him consult with (not so)EasyVictor. :smiley: :slight_smile: :astonished: :laughing: :stuck_out_tongue: :unamused:

CFIJames is probably the most informative instructor and commercial pilot on this discussion group. He proved his class once again by not responding to (not so)EasyVictor’s first, last and only post. My first comment on this topic was far more out of line (given my lack of experience in commercial/retractable environment), I sure didn’t see anything wrong with what CFIJames said. My compliments to JHEM, you should be proud.

I constantly am, just don’t tell him! :wink: