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Chronological Account of JAL Flight 123 With AM-Japan Crash, Bjt

August 15, 1985 GMT

TOKYO (AP) _ Here is a minute-by-minute account of Japan Air Lines Flight 123 which crashed into a central Japan mountaintop, killing 520 people in history’s worst one-plane commercial air disaster.

Details of Capt. Masami Takahama’s conversation with Tokyo Air Traffic controllers and the Boeing 747SR’s actual flight path, according to radar plottings, were provided to The Associated Press by the Japanese Transport Ministry.

″Flight Attendant″ refers to statements by surviving flight attendant Yumi Ochiai, a passenger aboard the plane.

Given time is Japan Standard Time, which is 13 hours ahead of EDT.

6:12 p.m. - JAL 123 takes off from Tokyo’s Haneda International Airport, 12 minutes after scheduled departure. There are 509 passengers and 15 crew members aboard for the hour’s flight to Osaka.

6:25 p.m. - JAL 123 is 20 nautical miles west of Oshima, an island in Sagami Bay, or above Izu peninsula.

JAL 123 to Tokyo Air (Traffic Controller): ″Trouble. Ah 3/8 Immediate request turn back to Haneda. Descend and maintain 220 (22,000 feet.)″

Capt. Takahama requests radar guidance to turn back to Oshima, declares ″7700″ international emergency code. Blip on air traffic controllers’ radar shows emergency aboard JAL 123.)

Tokyo Air to JAL 123: ″Maintain magnetic heading 90 degrees (direct east).″

6:25 p.m. (continued) - Flight Attendant - ″At 0625, I heard a loud noise above. My ears hurt. I don’t know if the door (R-5) blew away. No sound of explosion heard. Ceiling above rear lavatory blew away and air in cabin turned misty white. Oxygen masks came down with pre-recorded announcements. Plane started Dutch roll.″

Radar plotting - Altitude: 24,200 feet. Speed: 471 mph.

6:25 p.m. - Tokyo Air to JAL 123: ″(Please) confirm you are declaring emergency. Is that right?″

JAL 123 to Tokyo Air: ″Yes. Affirmative.″

Radar plotting: Altitude: 24,900 feet, 471 mph.

6:28 p.m. - Tokyo Air radar shows JAL 123 flying in northwesterly direction instead of east as instructed. Tokyo Air repeats instruction to JAL 123: ″Fly magnetic 90 degrees.″

JAL 123 to Tokyo Air: ″But now uncontrol (uncontrollable).″

Radar plotting: Altitude 22,200 feet, 471 mph.

6:31 p.m. - Tokyo Air to JAL 123: ″Can you descend?″

JAL 123 to Tokyo Air: ″Am descending. Now at 240 (24,000 feet).

Tokyo Air to JAL 123: ″You are now 72 nautical miles from Nagoya. Do you want to land at Nagoya?″

JAL 123 to Tokyo Air: ″Request back to Haneda.″

Radar plotting: Altitude 24,900 feet, 437 mph.

6:35 p.m. - Flight Attendant: ″Oxygen ran out, but no problem breathing. Purser gave emergency announcement. I helped on-duty crew to instruct passengers about life vest and how to take emergency safety positions.″

About 6:40 - Flight attendant: ″I saw Mt. Fuji on left.″ (apparently while plane makes a loop.)

6:46 p.m. - JAL 123 to Tokyo Air: ″Uncontrol.″

Tokyo Air to JAL 123: ″Do you want to communicate with Haneda?″

JAL 123 to Tokyo Air: ″Yes please″ (in loud voice).

Radar plotting: Altitude: 11,900 ft, 299 mph.

6:47 p.m. - JAL 123 to Tokyo Air: ″Request radar vector (guidance) to Haneda. Uncontrollable.″

Tokyo Air to JAL 123: ″Maintain magnetic 90 degrees. Can you control?″

JAL 123 to Tokyo Air: ″Uncontrollable.″

Radar plotting: Altitude: 10,000 ft, 310 mph.

6:48 p.m. - Radar plotting: Altitude, 8,000 feet.

6:49 p.m. - JAL 123 to Tokyo Air: ″Wahhhhh. (exclamation in Japanese, strongly indicating fear and surprise).″

6:50 p.m. - Radar plotting: Altitude 9,300 feet.

6:50 p.m. - JAL 123 to Tokyo Air: ″Uncontrol. Jl 12 ... uncontrol.″

Radar plotting: Altitude: 12,000 feet.

6: 54 p.m. - Tokyo Air to JL 123: ″Please contact Haneda on 119.7 MegaHerz.″

JAL 123 to Haneda (Air Traffic Controller): ″Request position (of plane).″

Haneda to JAL 123: ″You are now 55 nautical miles northwest of Haneda, 25 nautical miles west from Kumagaya non-directional beacon.

JAL 123 to Haneda. ″Roger.″

Radar plotting: Alt: 11,600 feet.

6:55 p.m. - Haneda to JAL 123: ″Haneda and Yokota (a U.S. Air Force Base west of Tokyo) both ready. You can start landing procedures anytime.″

No reply from JAL 123.

Radar plotting: Alt: 10,000 feet.

Flight Attendant (exact time unknown): ″After helping with crew instructions, I took safety position in seat. Plane descended in steep angle. I felt two or three succesive shocks. Chairs around me flew, my stomach hurt from the seat belt.″

6:57 p.m. - JAL 123 disappears from Tokyo Air radar.

Radar plotting: Magnetic heading 308 degrees (northwest), 59 nautical miles from Haneda. Altitude: 9,800 feet.

The wreckage was found on 5,408-foot Mt. Osutaka.