Help finding tail number for flight. ATR72 Emerg. Landing.



I would like to find the tail number of the aircraft used on the following flights:

March 20 American Eagle Flight 5168
March 22 American Eagle Flight 5193

I was on the March 22 flight when our right engine had to be shut off due to oil leak and we made an emergency landing at DFW (our departure airport). Before our flight, we were told the plane had just come out of maintenance.

I found on the internet there was a similar event for a flight departing Midland, TX 2 days prior, and found on this site that it was the same type of aircraft. AA refuses to tell me if it was the SAME aircraft.

Can you help me find out?

Thank you,

Eric Kirkland


Why do you want to know? Curiosity or because you want to sue for emotional distress or some other reason?


No lawsuit, just curiosity. The ordeal is more concerning to me if the aircraft had a known issue that was not properly resolved before being used for flight.

Can you help?


You can check the BTS database for ontime arrivals at … me=On-Time

Be aware that the database is large, even when filtered for a particular geographic ara. Excel 2003 and earlier will not open the full file. If you use Excel 2007 you can open the full data. However, with American Eagle being near the top of the data file this shouldn’t ber a problem.

The latest data for this January 2009 (it’s about 2 months behind; the February data should be up shortly and the March data will be available next month).

There are also ACARS sites that may give you the tail number. (Search the forum for references to ACARS)


The March Data is now available.

But, I downloaded it (entire thing) and opened in Office 2007. It seems like it got it all, yet I cannot flight the flights I mention. In fact, I cannot find any of the DFW-LBB flights operated by American Eagle.

Can you think of any reason that this would be the case? Are some small operators not subject to reporting?


I opened the file in Excel 2007. One thing I didn’t mention is that quite often code share flights are shown in the airline’s schedule as one number but the number used by the operating carrier is another number.

Here’s the flights on American Eagle (MQ) on 20 and 22 March. The order is flight number/scheduled departure time/registration for aircraft on 22 Mar/registration for aircraft on 20 March

3495 14:40 N516MQ N649MQ
3503 16:55 N941MQ N933MQ
3661 09:15 N693MQ N647MQ
3795 08:05 N659MQ N909MQ
3885 18:40 N697MQ N663MQ

Here’s the opposite direction (i.e. LBB-DFW) flights for the same day
3496 16:15 N516MQ N649MQ
3504 18:40 N941MQ N933MQ
3532 05:45 N660MQ N649MQ
3620 09:35 N649MQ N909MQ
3660 10:50 N693MQ N647MQ


Thanks for the response.

I should have been a little more specific.

The flight I was on was on March 22 from DFW to LBB on American Eagle. AA posted it as flight 5193.

The other flight that had the same mechanical problem and unexpected landing was a flight from Midland, TX (MAF) to DFW on March 20. AA posted as flight 5168. It was also operated by American Eagle. It is referenced in this story:

The MAF-DFW flight is the one I cannot find in the data. On that day, from MAF, I only find Southwest “WN” flights and “XE” flights (I assume XE is Continental or Continental Express) to various locations - none to DFW.

This seems strange because American Eagle has regular service between MAF and DFW.




I understand that. As far as ATC is concerned, there was not flight MQ (American Eagle) 5193. It was one of the flights listed in my posting.

I’m not sure why you can’t find this. Here are the steps I took:

  1. Went to the BTS page
  2. Clicked most of the boxes
  3. Changed the geographical area to Texas
  4. Changed the month to March
  5. Downloaded the file
  6. Opened the downloaded ZIP file and opened the CSV file contained in it using Excel 2007

I also used the above steps to download the entire USA (i.e. geographical area= “all”). I opened downloaded CSV file in Excel 2007. The total rows in this file was over 600,000.

Note that if you get an error message in Excel saying the file was not fully loaded then you are not using Excel 2007.


Thank you a bunch for you help on this, but I’m sorry I’m not finding one of the flights.

I can use the same steps and you, either with TX data or ALL data, and I can get the same flight information for the DFW to LBB leg on 3/22, which is exactly what I wanted.

However, the flight I cannot find is the one from Midland, TX to DFW on 3/20. This should be MAF to DFW, as in the news story link. I am definitely in Excel 2007 and I get no errors importing the data. Can you confirm that you can find the MAF to DFW information for 3/20 in your dataset? Can you post it if so? I think the info you posted before was only for LBB.

Thank you,



I admit that I have ZERO experience with this stuff, but…

Would the flight even appear as an “on-time” arrival if it did a precautionary landing back at the departure airport?


The “on-time” database shows the “on timeliness” of flights so it shows not only flights that arrive on time but also delayed and canceled flights.

erickirkland’ flight should appear as either a cancellation or a delay. With the new reporting format, I think it would show as a delay and indicate a new aircraft if the original aircraft was unable to complete the flight.

However, like erickirkland, I cannot find MAF/DFW flight information for MQ.


Thanks Damiross… I clicked on your link and was overwhelmed before I even tried downloading anything. :smiley:

I wasn’t sure if the data was based on what was filed or actually flown… Your explanation makes sense.