Lax jet dumps fuel on school.

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by PaulS, Jan 14, 2020.

  1. Jeff Oslick

    Jeff Oslick En-Route

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    I was on a Southwest flight about 12 years ago that the left engine ate a fan blade at about 10,000' climbing out from OAK over SFO. It took less than a minute to secure the engine, and the pilot immediately turned back to OAK, intercepting maybe a 5-7 mile final. The Delta flight never got above about 7,000'. If it was a very serious emergency, they readily could have made it back with a much shorter routing. The decisions that were made appear to me to have been made to minimize inconvenience for ATC.
     
  2. Ravioli

    Ravioli Final Approach

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    @N1120A keeps parroting the "land at MTOW" assertion.

    It can land at MTOW on a single engine? Or does it matter that it's a a single engine operation at that point?
     
  3. Bill Jennings

    Bill Jennings Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    East to Monday morning quarterback, I'd like to see what the final investigations reveal. Had they gone out over the ocean to dump fuel and not come back, a la Swiss Air 111, people would be asking why they didn't land asap.
     
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  4. Jeff Oslick

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    Does an overweight landing inspection cost more than 10,000 lbs of jet fuel?
     
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  5. eman1200

    eman1200 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I like the one video where the person is looking straight up at the plane flying overhead at several thousand feet saying “wow, this is going to be bad”.

    THAT person is going to be among those suing.
     
  6. midwestpa24

    midwestpa24 Pattern Altitude

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    Or the cost to settle with hundreds if not thousands of Los Angelinos.

    At first I wanted to give the benefit of the doubt, perhaps a stuck fuel dump valve, or something really serious with the airplane. But as more information becomes available, the actions become more questionable. Starting to smell of bad judgment, and Jet-A.
     
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  7. Jeff Oslick

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    The point is, they didn't land asap anyway. They were in the air for about 20 minutes after the diversion. A direct route back to LAX would have been less than half that. Yes, disruptive to ATC, but that is what happens in an emergency.
     
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  8. N1120A

    N1120A Cleared for Takeoff

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    I don't know about everyone else here, but one of the things I learned in flight training is that your concerns are not only for the airplane and those on it, but for people on the ground as well.

    They seemed to be expedient and following checklists, right up until they decided it was a good idea to dump thousands of pounds of jet fuel, at low level, over one of the largest cities on earth.

    Of course it can. That is the entire point. Remember that landing distance certification NEVER accounts for the effects of reverse thrust. The engines are at idle when you land.

    Or they were just concerned that an airline was dumping hundreds or thousands of pounds of fuel over their heads, at a very low altitude. And HEAVEN FORBID a multi-billion dollar corporation like Delta ever take responsibility for anything it does. That's for poor people, right?

    1) SR111 was an onboard fire. That is a totally different situation than a compressor stall. If they had an onboard fire, they'd have made a bee line for the numbers at LAX or even gone to VNY, Pt. Mugu, or any other airport with a runway even close to long enough.

    2) They made the decision to proceed with a controlled overweight landing quite quickly, and that was prudent. What wasn't prudent was then deciding to open the dump valve over hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of people.

    Exactly. What on earth drives someone to do something like that? If you want to avoid an overweight landing, and feel the aircraft is stable enough to do so, go dump somewhere. If you feel the need to head straight back, the aircraft is certified to land at MTOW and get an inspection. The engine is getting opened up anyway - who cares if Delta is going to have to pay for an airframe inspection?

    And the professionals at SCT were more than happy to give them anything they wanted. This is part of the job they do so well. They set up on the localizer and flew a smoothly vectored approach.

    I will never understand people who defend this.
     
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  9. jordane93

    jordane93 Final Approach

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    Probably @EvilEagle. Come on man, think of the children!
     
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  10. eman1200

    eman1200 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Why are you vilifying Delta? The damn fuel ain’t even dry yet, why don’t you give them a chance to make it right? Oh that’s right, that’s what your types like to do.

    Seems like you know more than everyone else here, so I’ll just back out.
     
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  11. Ravioli

    Ravioli Final Approach

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    @N1120A - remind us again your ratings and time in type? You seem to know EVERYTHING that nobody else does.
     
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  12. overdrive148

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    As a new kid owner, even though I know the risk is minor to nonexistent I would still be a bit concerned about it happening. I wouldn't be so offended as to sue but I would at least like an explanation or apology from Delta about it (even though I would much rather have 181 people alive than some people on the ground misted with jet-A).
     
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  13. Ryanb

    Ryanb Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Holy cow! Somebody needs to cool their jets!

    Gotta love these self proclaimed experts who come out of the woodwork talking about subjects they have zero experience with.
     
  14. Ravioli

    Ravioli Final Approach

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    But as a former ramper... how concerned would you be about a little fuel on you? I'm sure it happened more than twice.
     
  15. overdrive148

    overdrive148 En-Route

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    As a ramper, I was concerned if there wasn't fuel on me!

    Only mostly kidding. I didn't worry much about it as I almost always had PPE but even then it just made for dry, sometimes red skin and a oppressive scent for those around you. Repeated exposure over time can cause cancer or so I was told but on a one off exposure? Hardly concerning.
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2020
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  16. midwestpa24

    midwestpa24 Pattern Altitude

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    I am trying to give the crew the benefit of the doubt, and in the heat of the moment sometimes things happen. I do have to somewhat question their judgement for a fuel dump at low altitude over a heavily populated area. Yes they did get the plane down safely, but based on the information made public so far, the ATC tapes, etc., I question if the choices made were right.

    If they were concerned about weight and wanted to dump, tell ATC and go somewhere appropriate to do it so. Its not a terribly unusual procedure, and there are procedures for doing it.

    Neither is a heavy landing, if they were concerned about getting down safely, then get it down and land. Overweight landings are also a practiced procedure.

    It seems they chose a path somewhere in between the two solutions.
     
  17. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    His first instinct was to find the external tank jettison switch.
     
  18. timwinters

    timwinters Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Maybe, but it's far less stupid than the gratuitous state bashing that you and some others have been doing in this thread. He was simply responding to your idiocy with a bit of his own.
     
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  19. jordane93

    jordane93 Final Approach

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    Too close for missiles, switching to external tank jettison?
     
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  20. Ravioli

    Ravioli Final Approach

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    What an odd thing to write. I've lived in California more than half my life. I'll likely retire there. Already on the hangar waiting list.

    Now, if you think it's "bashing" to say people shouldn't be pooping on the street... yah... I'll bash that.

    And I also correctly pointed out that the state of California doesn't pay anything to the federal government.

    I'm sure you had some point. Just no idea what it could be.
     
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  21. Tarheelpilot

    Tarheelpilot En-Route

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    @N1120A its to bad you were not on their jumpseat. You could have taken care of this situation correctly
     
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  22. smv

    smv Line Up and Wait

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    Plot Twist:

    It was not fuel. It was a newly developed aerosol version of every childhood vaccination.

    :D
     
  23. Larry in TN

    Larry in TN Cleared for Takeoff

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    A bit better than the V1-cut performance would have been 20 minutes earlier.
     
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  24. LongRoadBob

    LongRoadBob Cleared for Takeoff

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    The only account I read of this stated that it had dissipated before reaching the ground and it was just the odor they reacted to and that no one needed to visit the hospital.

    I have no idea if that was correct. Are there accounts that report people were also covered in it?
     
  25. smv

    smv Line Up and Wait

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    "Hundreds of thousands of pounds" worth if you believe some of the posters in this thread.

    :rolleyes:
     
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  26. Tantalum

    Tantalum Final Approach

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    When did PoA become so bitter? This used to be one of the more civil places.. but we're descending into YouTube comments territory :eek:

    Thanks Tim, you get it!

    For what it's worth, the only place I've seen someone openly take a dump in the street was in West Palm Beach, some homeless dude was halfway across Okeechobee or something, dropped his pants, left a steamer, then kept walking, something I haven't seen here, nor am I aware of social policies that allow or endorse it

    As far as this fuel dumping accident,
    , that's what it seems like to me. Either land overweight, or dump somewhere else, but don't dump in the street (whether it's JetA or defecate) at low altitude on final


    Some articles said some of the students needed a firefighter to wash their hands with soap and water. I know it sounds absolutely ridiculous (I've had plenty of experience cleaning tools with gas, and even tasting it siphoning from one tank to another), but jetfuel raining down from the sky with a low level airplane overhead is obviously going to freak people out
     
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  27. cowman

    cowman En-Route

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    I mean obviously having a highly flammable liquid dumped all over school kids ins't a good thing and it shouldn't have happened at all and steps should be taken to avoid it happening again. I mean one good ignition source and this could have been something quite horrific.

    However, I've just had enough of the press ramping up the drama for every little thing and leaving people scared to death. The kids got dirty, they washed up, they were fine. That's not an injury, it's getting dirty. Injuries involve things like bleeding, broken bones, burns, concussions, etc. If I was writing this story or just relating it I'd say something along the lines of "Some kids got jet fuel on them and there was some warranted concern but they got cleaned up and everyone was fine." Not "CHILDREN INJURED".
     
  28. Pilawt

    Pilawt Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    To hear the media describe it ...

    fuel dump.jpg
     
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  29. N1120A

    N1120A Cleared for Takeoff

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    Its too bad they did something like this.

    I guess you don't know the difference between the words "of" and "or."
     
  30. smv

    smv Line Up and Wait

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  31. Ryanb

    Ryanb Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Just curious why you’re coming off as being insulting? Not sure what you’re trying to prove here and your lack of experience with the subject matter doesn’t make you anymore convincing.
     
  32. kgruber

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    Delta crews are moping up the mess today.
     
  33. schmookeeg

    schmookeeg Pattern Altitude

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    I liked the "delta spraying children with Jet-A to the delight of the attorneys" post, but I didn't really like it. It forced my perspective to reset itself from "the likely three molecules of atomized kerosene each child suffered" to the horrid optics to the unwashed and newly litigious. They'll be flying Rip Taylor on the same route dropping hundred dollar bills before this is over, and everybody in greater Los Angeles county suddenly got doused in Kerosene, is emotionally scarred from it, and will require a check to dry their tears with. Sigh.

    I saw someone mention CNO as a possible alternative for the 777. I'm no jet jock, but I remember discussing something similar with a Lufthansa captain awhile back. Their "alternate" to LAX (from Frankfurt I believe) was Las Vegas, which blew my mind. He told me that the reasoning was for firefighting/emergency personnel meeting standards, not just performance and runway lengths. Made me realize there is a lot more to 121 planning/decisionmaking than a little GA guy can fathom.
     
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  34. N1120A

    N1120A Cleared for Takeoff

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    Funny, given that all these non-lawyers are suddenly legal experts here. I am, however, insulted when people 1) make stupid comments about legal issues, 2) misquote me and 3) defend anything that some corporate entity does to people, even when it isn't safe.

    It makes sense for the A380 to have SFO or LAS as an alternate. You don't want to go somewhere that doesn't regularly handle that airplane unless you HAVE to.
     
  35. farmrjohn

    farmrjohn Pre-takeoff checklist

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    IIRC the regs require landing at the nearest "suitable" airport in point of time in the event of an engine failure, but leave it to the captain's authority as to what is suitable. That's why Lufthansa would plan on Las Vegas (most of their flights would be heading east after departure) depending on where the failure occurred after departure. I doubt that KLAS firefighting/emergency personnel would be any higher than at KLAX. Runway length, terrain, familiarity, fire and rescue are all factors. Overflying one field just to get to a field with "better" maintenance for after the landing is not one of the factors the FAA considers a valid consideration, but by the same token a suitable diversion airport might be closer than a planned ETOPS alternate.

    It sounded like the PF/PNF duties switched after their first radio call, or a "bunkie" came on the radio. And, it also sounded as if they were busy with cockpit duties with the missed radio calls. I'm a bit surprised they decided to dump while maneuvering for the approach though. The usual training scenario for an engine failure shortly after takeoff with a heavy weight condition will entail dumping fuel to get down to a targeted weight after cleaning up the engine failure, and before starting the approach. And, it can take quite a bit of time to get the weight down even with all pumps dumping if the plane takes off at MGTOW
     
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  36. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down

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    Ever tried to light a puddle of diesel? It’s not exactly “highly flammable” in any way. Just sayin’...
     
  37. EvilEagle

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    Thankfully I wasn't part of this one - still on mil leave!
    That will be my first instinct for many years to come.
    Only if the target is behind you. :D

    In all seriousness I don't know what the circumstances were to make them go down that particular set of decisions. May have been right, may have been wrong. I flew with Captains who told the jumpseat guy "if we have to early return for a real emergency, your job is to turn the dump switch on ASAP and talk to the FA's" and I flew with Captains who said "never going to touch the dump switch". In the 767 it only dumped a little over 1100#/min so it wouldn't make all that much difference. I don't know what the 777's procedures are.

    I do know that if he'd landed and turned into a big fireball people would be asking why he didn't dump fuel before landing. That's just the nature of this business, you are expected to be perfect 100% of the time and when you aren't (or people think you aren't) they will line up to fry you.

    Rest easy experts...
     
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  38. Heftiger

    Heftiger Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I have no experience with anything bigger than a PA32, but something stands out to me.

    Don’t they do calculations for landing distances, v speeds, ect based on the aircraft weight? Not sure how this looks in an emergency. But if they did all these calculations, and then dump fuel on final, aren’t all those numbers now moot? Makes me think it was not on purpose that the fuel was dumped.
     
  39. smv

    smv Line Up and Wait

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    I think it is widely understood that landing overweight with these big guys necessitates inspections, but is it also true that landing overweight could easily stress the aircraft enough as to cause physical failure of critical structural systems and perhaps cause a crash, regardless how careful they are while landing?

    o_O
     
  40. EvilEagle

    EvilEagle Cleared for Takeoff

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    TBH I can't say for sure. In my training at DAL, they didn't make it out to be a big thing (landing overweight) but then again, they didn't make dumping gas out to be a big thing either. Stopping distance is no trivial thing in a widebody, especially when super heavy (as I imagine all 777's are on T/O).

    I was just pointing out that no matter what, if someone disagrees with what happened (especially if they are a pilot with only 5% of the story) they will likely be out for blood.