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777 Crashes on Landing in San Francisco

 
 
roger
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 12:36 am
@Ragman,
If I were their pr person, I would have used the word "transitioning" instead of training. An experienced pilot transitioning to a different ship.
Ragman
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 12:50 am
@roger,
Could this be a case of an unfortunate choice of words or sensationalism (yellow) journalism rearing its ugly head? Clearly this was the pilot's first time with a Boeing 777 into the SF airport.

Then there's the issue of auto-glide or auto-slope(?) software that was turned off for a month off due to construction. The rate of descent of the jet apparently was too step and 4x the appropriate descending rate as well.
roger
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 01:28 am
@Ragman,
I dunno, Rags. This would be a good time for georgeob to show up, but I get the feeling he's lost interest.

The biggest ship I ever worked on was Beech 18, and never drove any of them.
Ragman
 
  2  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 04:24 am
@roger,
Hell, I could be the least qualified to comment. I haven't even flown in a jet plane in years. I just read the news and watch the news channels for info on this. I would hope for the sake of the pilot that it's not operator error. I'm still a bit taken aback that AT controllers far earlier weren't urging the plane to pull up and stop their too rapid descent and steep slope. So far, that piece seems missing from the story.
rosborne979
 
  2  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 04:43 am
@Ragman,
There may end up being an overlap of responsibilities which contributed to this accident, but ultimately I think it's up to the pilot to be aware any time his aircraft is not doing what it's supposed to do, or what he's guiding it to do. If things only started to go wrong in the last 3 seconds before crash then I can see a pilot being too absorbed in emergency action to talk much. But if the departure from Standard Operating Procedure occurred even 10 seconds out, there should have been time for a reasonable response.

Back when I landed little bitty Cesnas the two things you watched on approach were Glide Slope and Airspeed. If you got those two things right then it was pretty much automatic.

So far it seems to me like this aircraft was off its glide slope and off its airspeed well before the 3 second "oh ****" mark was passed.
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 05:33 am
I heard a man on TV say one of the deaths may have been caused by a rescue vehicle.
rosborne979
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 07:38 am
@edgarblythe,
edgarblythe wrote:
I heard a man on TV say one of the deaths may have been caused by a rescue vehicle.

That would be particularly hideous and sad. I hope it isn't true.
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 02:18 pm
From ABC News
San Mateo County Coroner Robert Foucrault announced that he was investigating one of the two teenage passengers killed on Saturday. He believes that there was a possibility that she survived the crash, but was run over by a rescue vehicle rushing to the scene.
Lustig Andrei
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 03:19 pm
@edgarblythe,
The AP story in this morning's local paper says much the same thing.
0 Replies
 
BillRM
 
  0  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 03:19 pm
When a plane get near the ground you get a ground effect that increase your lift by 20 percents or so and the below article give a possible reason why that was not enough in this case.


Quote:


http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2013/07/overnight-update-on-asiana-214/277568/

On what all this means by way of explanation, I give you the views of another airline pilot who wrote in last night. As with some previous notes, I'm not going to explain all the flying lingo. You will get the main point.
I've been a captain on the B-777 for over 13 years, 10,000 in the B-777, and a check captain for more than 10 of those years for one of the three major US carriers. I have no interest in public attention, but the reporting on the TV and radio has been atrociously inaccurate, including by "experienced airline pilots" who have never flown the aircraft. Aircraft are not all interchangeable and skills are sometimes poorly transferred - like one of our pilots who shutdown the "outboards" to save fuel, but was on a two engine aircraft after leaving a four engine aircraft.

Several issues not yet reported widely and are significant:

Visual landings to a runway with a displaced threshold can be misleading. The displacements exist for a variety of reasons - obstructions, noise sensitivity (look at 34L at Narita), or others. The seawall may be the reason for 28L at SFO; the reasons are not explained.

More significantly, the B-777 is a flying simulator. The dozens of military and commercial aircraft I have flown will pitch up with thrust added for any number of reasons. This particularly true for aircraft with engines hanging from pylons below the wings. The DC-10 crash in Iowa was partially controlled with thrust from engines 1 and 3 by the flight instructor sitting in the flight engineer middle seat. The B-777 is programmed to cancel any aerodynamic or thrust vector caused by thrust addition or reduction; Pitch is unchanged. If the pilot flying is used to an aircraft pitching up when additional thrust is applied, he will be sorely disappointed.

There has been considerable opinion differences between the THRUST vs PITCH crowds in aviation. After overlapping careers, 40 years as a Certified Flight Instructor, 20 years as a Navy pilot, and 35 years as a commercial pilot, the argument continues. If the pilot just raised the nose and was already low and slow, he was on the "backside of the power curve". Raising the nose only lowered the tail further and there was insufficient "ground effect" due in part to the height difference of the runway and the bay as well as the insufficient speed. Thrust was the only way to save this poorly executed approach.

When the engines are "spooled up" with landing flaps and landing gear extended, the engine response should be very good. But the Autothrottle system can be turned off, removing a lower limit of airspeed eliminating automatic throttle increase when slow.

The Boeing engineers are today's equivalents of the "rocket scientist", both whom have experienced a declination in status between the space shuttle accidents and the B-787 multi-year delays and battery problems. Be careful of dedicated experts.

New guy, bad behavior transfer, no copilot help from multiple copilots (could be cultural, deference to the captain), displaced threshold, inoperative glideslope transmitter, inoperative VASI lights, some backup flight systems possibly selected off, minimal initial operating experience (line operational instruction with a check pilot), and other factors will come out of this NTSB investigation.
Some more in the queue, bu
BillRM
 
  0  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 03:25 pm
@BillRM,
I am coming to the idea that the accident was cause by humans being humans and sometime we humans will screw up by the numbers for no good reason and in fact when we have every logical reasons why we should not do so.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 03:28 pm
@BillRM,
Interesting, thanks, Bill.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 04:34 pm
@ossobuco,
always hated coming in to SF over them damned salt lakes and that seawall.
Looks like Jr pilot screwed up and nobody challenged "the captain". That's why we should rely more upon autonimous cockpits.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 05:35 pm
@farmerman,
As only a reader - it seems the transitioning plus the culture (which probably sometimes has good points) came up short.

My scariest landing? Tijuana in a thunderstorm on Aeronaves. The stewardi had out the rosary beads and an older man in a black suit kissed the tarnac. SFO did provide me with a mix of fear and anticipation (I like the city).

Plus, there was the excitement of whether my flight was cancelled or delayed, usually a matter of fog.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 06:16 pm
@ossobuco,
you remember coming over all the different manmade "Salt ponds"? where allthe different concentration of brines led to many different colors from the bacteria that were able to thrive in each salinity? They were very colorful but always about 20 seconds away from coming in close to the seawall.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 06:20 pm
@farmerman,
Yes, I do. I flew in and out for years, no idea of exact times.
Also I misspelled tarmac.
A friend used to call it tartop (he was a pilot who dated a friend of mine).
0 Replies
 
Lustig Andrei
 
  2  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 06:28 pm
I've flown into SFO a number of times and never experienced the trepidation of which y'all are talking about. Maybe that's because SFO is very similarly situated as Logan International at Boston, an airport with which I am thoroughly and excrutiatingly familiar, having worked out of an office in the General Aviation building there at one time, years ago. Both airports require many flights to come in directly over a sea-wall which, I suppose, can be pretty scary. (Logan's safety record certainly isn't spotless.) But,somehow, familiarity breeds not contempt but a feeling of security and comfort.
farmerman
 
  3  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 06:30 pm
@Lustig Andrei,
well, when you flew into SF, they used Sea Planes and Zeppelins
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 06:33 pm
@Lustig Andrei,
I'll contrast SFO over decades (talk about foggy memory) to Eureka Arcata for six years, which I always enjoyed sans fear, arriving over the waves (however wrong that might have been of me to think).

All this a kind of bookmarking interest.
0 Replies
 
Lustig Andrei
 
  2  
Reply Mon 8 Jul, 2013 07:27 pm
@farmerman,
farmerman wrote:

well, when you flew into SF, they used Sea Planes and Zeppelins


We also had those helium-filled balloons. Zeppelins were a modern innovation.
 

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