BA 747 crew creates transatlantic fuel emergency to save 100K

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by mikea, Feb 25, 2005.

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  1. mikea

    mikea Touchdown! Greaser!

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    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2-1499342,00.html

    Hey! COMMERCIAL Jumbo jet getthereitis!
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2005
  2. Let'sgoflying!

    Let'sgoflying! Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    "Air traffic controllers at Los Angeles spotted streams of sparks shooting from the engine and immediately radioed the pilot."
    This part would really make me want to second guess their decision.
    They also said the engine was overheating. Even if they didn't get a fire warning/blow bottles, such things make me want to be on the ground.
     
  3. Greebo

    Greebo N9017H - C172M (1976)

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    I find this whole concept just astounding - hundreds of lives put in needless jeapordy to save a hundred k pounds? How much would it have cost BA in law suits had the plane crashed and killed all on board? And don't get me started on "Just as safe on 3 as 4"...a plane making loud bangs and shooting sparks is NOT as safe as a plane running on 4 engines in good condition!
     
  4. gibbons

    gibbons En-Route

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    You can bet there will be lawsuits anyway once the pax find out what happened. Can you say "negligence?"

    Chip
     
  5. wsuffa

    wsuffa Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Oh, they probably busted some reg somewhere.

    My guess is that it was more than the 100K pounds, it was probably that it would have been more expensive to do maintenance on the plane in the US rather than Europe.

    In the end, they will probably end up with more than 100K pounds expense out of this deal.
     
  6. judypilot

    judypilot Line Up and Wait

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    "Balpa, the British Air Line Pilots’ Association, gave warning last night that the regulation could result in pilots being pressured into taking greater risks for commercial reasons."

    Boy, if they did this to make a point about the regulation, they sure didn't think it through. This is ridiculous. Later, the article said they did what was best for the pax. Yeah, right. Did they ask the pax? How much you wanna bet they didn't?

    Judy
     
  7. bbchien

    bbchien Final Approach

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    Humans are the same, at every level, in all countries....sigh.
     
  8. L10MAN

    L10MAN Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I was a wide body maintenance coordinator/shift manager for two major airlines. Each time I got a call about an inflight shutdown, after discussing the cause of the shutdown I would ask the crew their intentions. I would then suggest they contact flight operations to see what they wanted to do. If there was a choice of making an unscheduled landing at KXYZ or KABC I would suggest the one that maintenance had the best chance of recovering the flight. But the choice was always the crews to make. I never suggested they continue flight or for that matter to air turn back, it was always the crews choice. If because of this new law crews are being pressured
    into letting the ground make the call then I'm glad I'm retired. Now we did routinely fly 747's with 5 engines, which limited max airspeed to 250kts. Did increase the fuel burn and time from JFK to TLV abit but it did get the spare engine there.
    Ron
     
  9. Ghery

    Ghery Final Approach

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    I remember riding a TWA 747 out of Gatwick back in 1992. We were a couple of hours out when they turned around and went back. One engine was using oil at a rate that wouldn't allow it to make it to St. Louis, and they didn't want to continue across the Atlantic on three. I had no problem with that in-flight decision. They got it fixed and we left again. Wound up spending the night in St. Louis before continuing on to San Jose, but that was on TWA's nickel. Sounds to me like BA made a poor call on that one.
     
  10. anonn

    anonn Ejection Handle Pulled

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    This is based on your experience in the -400?

    This sort of anonymous sniping is not in keeping with the spirit of this board. It would be acceptable if the poster had identified himself or given us a way to communicate with the poster, or had the poster noted that he was indeed a -47 captain with 10,000 hours in the chair. Indeed it may be reasonable in ways we who do not have -47 time don't understand. But the proper way to make that point is: (1) Identify oneself (2) establish credentials and (3) make the case for reasonableness.

    I have not deleted the post, as an example of how I think this board should work.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 27, 2005
  11. Brian Austin

    Brian Austin En-Route

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    You have to have 747 experience to recognize that an engine is having obvious issues and, with sparks and loud bangs, could cause more damage to the in-flight aircraft?

    Don't think so.
     
  12. bbchien

    bbchien Final Approach

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    Actually it's not astounding. Airline companies have been tracking crews for years. Fuel burned, tons of payload (humans) carried, miles flown. All of this has created the HMO environment in the sky.

    Why do you think the SWA '37 found it's way to the gas pumps across the street from the John Wayne Airport a couple of years ago? If you create a backdrop of a cost penalty environment, you will get cost penalty behavior.

    We see this in Medicine all the time (shudder).
     
  13. Tom-D

    Tom-D Ejection Handle Pulled

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    Chuck,
    I have never hauled pax, or ever flew com, But I have had 13 engine failures in flight, None of which caused the mission to be terminated. When you have 4 turning the rules are different.

    Safe is what the NATOPS say it is.

    Remember 99% of my 43k Hours in Willie Victor is out of sight of land. when we lost an engine we had rules of risk management to follow.

    If you caused a crew to scramble to replace you on station, you better be in a raft when they get there. (patrol crew joke)

    Yes I know that hauling PAX is a different situation and a lot more lives were at stake here, But flying with 1 of 4 in the bag is a safe operation. Safe as 4? NO, but still above the required safety margin? yes.

    The Boeing 777 can fly full gross with one of two on line, and is certified open ocean ops, with one.

    When a turbine bangs, and sparkes fly it usually means it ate some thing (FOD) check lists come out and are taken down by the numbers, The flight is terminated when the check list say so.

    Please know that I am not rationalizing this crews actions, just explaining that 3 engine ops are safe.
     
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