Boeing 737-8F2, TC-JKF, 13 March 2011

Boeing 737-8F2, TC-JKF


Shortly after takeoff from Stansted, the aircraft levelled at 800 ft aal (450 ft agl) and did not climb until the pilots received instructions from ATC. The pilots had misinterpreted altitude restrictions shown on the departure chart. The pilots stated that the combination of the general information on the SID chart ‘Initial climb straight ahead to 850ft’ and ‘Do not climb above SID levels until instructed by ATC’ caused them to think they should level earlier than actually required. Additionally, the commander’s previous experience at Stansted had been on a different SID that contained different wording in the general information section.

The pilots caused the aircraft to level incorrectly at 800 ft aal because they misinterpreted the information written in the general information section of the departure chart. This information originated from the UK AIP and was correctly transposed to the SID chart the crew were using. The pilots’ misinterpretation of the information was reinforced by the previous experience of the crew. As a result of this incident NATS amended wording on all SIDs in the London TMA.

Download report:

Boeing 737-8F2 TC-JKF 02-12.pdf (760.67 kb)

Published 10 December 2014