The Douglas DC-8
United Airlines Flight 173 from Denver, a DC-8 approaching Portland, Ore., with 181 passengers, circled near the airport for an hour as the crew desperately tried to sort
out a landing gear problem. Although warned of the rapidly diminishing fuel supply
by the planes flight engineer, the captain, according to investigative findings, waited
too long to begin his final approach. The DC-8 never made it to runway 28Left. it ran
out of fuel and crashed at 6:15 pm on a cold, clear Thursday evening in 1978.
In response, United revamped its cockpit training procedures around a new concept
of Cockpit Resource Management (CRM). It emphases teamwork and communication among the crew. It proved to be so successful that it is now used throughout the