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geraintw
30th Dec 2005, 09:04
An engine fire forced a British Airways jet to return to John F. Kennedy International Airport shortly after taking off Thursday night.

One of the four engines on the London-bound Boeing 747
ignited shortly after its 11:20 p.m. departure, said John
McCarthy, a spokesman for the Port Authority of New York
and New Jersey.

The plane landed safely and no one was injured, he said,
and the pilot extinguished the fire.

Approximately 300 passengers were on Flight 116, which was
headed to Heathrow Airport, McCarthy said.

The passengers and crew were scheduled to take another
flight Friday morning.

411A
30th Dec 2005, 09:43
Hmmm, considering past big airways modus operandi, I'm surprised they didn't just keep going on with three...:}

spoilers yellow
30th Dec 2005, 10:01
How about a little credit guys.

ANY fire on board is a much more serious matter than any precationary shut down etc.

The flight was airbourne at 0423z and on the ground again at 0441z!
Fairly good going I'd say, lets not turn this into another have a go at BA thread.

All the best.

Rainboe
30th Dec 2005, 10:15
411- that was a very sad and cheap swipe at fellow professional aviators. You, probably more than the vast majority, know that a fire warning is of a completely different degree and they (again) did absolutely the right thing under the circumstances. If you want to reopen that enormous thread, why not tack your facetious comments onto the end of it? They too did the right thing, and I stand by that.

Knackered Nigel
30th Dec 2005, 10:36
Sounds like a job well done, but this forum is too often full of cheap shots. 411A ..... how predictable you are.

Avman
30th Dec 2005, 10:42
Oh come on guys, I know y'all love to bash 411A, but I thought that was funny! A first class professional job was done and all got down safely. A little humour after the event is all part and parcel of the aviation business. Bet the BA crew made a few cracks of their own in the bar afterwards.

Jordan D
30th Dec 2005, 11:03
Nothing like cheap BA bashing - absolutely bl**dy shameful.

Good job by the aviators in question for getting the plane on the ground so quickly after the problem.

Jordan

BEagle
30th Dec 2005, 11:16
Sounds like a good job done on a black winter night by a highly professional crew to me.

barit1
30th Dec 2005, 12:53
Considering the journalistic license rampant in the mainstream press, do we know in fact if the crew in fact had a fire warning? Ten months ago the BA744 out of LAX did not, even though fireballs (typical of a stall/surge) were evident to the pax.

It's a distinction worth knowing.

know in fact if the crew in fact There I go, just being redundant again... :ugh:

Voeni
30th Dec 2005, 12:58
C'mon guys, stop bashing 411A.

There must be some humor in this forum, otherwise I could never bear it!

gas path
30th Dec 2005, 16:02
It didn't catch fire.......but the turbine is wrecked.

yachtno1
30th Dec 2005, 16:25
Must have been high EGT then ! :)

flyer55
30th Dec 2005, 16:36
Congratulations guys and girls on a job done very well:ok:

Captain Rat
30th Dec 2005, 17:02
So what was it, a genuine fire, turbine overheat warning, false warning?

PaperTiger
30th Dec 2005, 17:05
FAA (well JFK TWR anyway) seem to think it was a fire:IDENTIFICATION
Regis#: BAW116 Make/Model: B747 Description: B-747-400
Date: 12/30/2005 Time: 0453

Event Type: Incident Highest Injury: None Mid Air: N Missing: N Damage: Unknown

LOCATION
City: NEW YORK State: NY Country: US

DESCRIPTION
ACFT RETURNED TO LAND ON RWY 31L AFTER TOWER OBSERVED FLAMES ON LEFT SIDE OF ACFT, NEW YORK, NY

Navy_Adversary
30th Dec 2005, 17:24
As mere SLF, a good job well done by the Captain.
Does Maximum Landing Weight not influence how long it is before the aircraft can land?
I would have thought 20-30 mins wouldn't give them enough time to jettison the required amount of fuel?

Capt's Little Helper
30th Dec 2005, 18:16
Good job guys and girls.

Let's give some credit where it's due. Whatever the cause was, the crew had to return with a presumably heavy a/c on a dark winter night, with the loss of an engine.

They did ok in my book.

Rainboe
30th Dec 2005, 18:29
Navy man- if your ass is on fire, max landing weight assumes a sort of irrelevance, if you see what I mean. Anyway, a JFK-LHR is really a short flight for the 747- like less than half long range. It's quite possible the aircraft was already under max landing weight anyway.

Random Electron
30th Dec 2005, 18:41
Unless they were tanking. You know the price of gas in the UK?

Localiser Green
30th Dec 2005, 18:42
Does Maximum Landing Weight not influence how long it is before the aircraft can land?
747-400 (in common with most a/c) is certified to land up to MTOW in an emergency.

Engine fire or smoke in cabin are good examples of when to forget the weight and land ASAP (runway length permitting).

Overweight landing inspection is mandatory, but often reveals no problems (casting mind back to a 767-300 which landed at Manchester about 30,000kg over MLW a few years back with smoke in cabin after t/o, and was on its way to sunny Florida again just a few hours later).

Ontariotech
30th Dec 2005, 19:11
JFK Tower could see flames or "What appeared to be flames" coming out of the engine on the left hand side. Jetblue aircraft taxiing on the ground commented "that engine could possibly burn off".

Crew made one orbit to get sorted after engine shut-down and fire extinguishment, and made an ILS approach to 31L.

Very, very profesional as far as the ATC chit chat goes.

Thunderbug
30th Dec 2005, 20:00
Take Off Weight for a JFK-LHR usually about 300t. Max Landing Weight 285t (ish). A quick circuit and you are not going to be far off that figure. You may also feel that it is more important to land than hang around.

Unless they were tanking. You know the price of gas in the UK?
Despite the fuel depot explosion, JFK is not currently a BA tankering station for the 744.

The boys done good!

T'bug:ok:

Joetom
30th Dec 2005, 21:18
Sounds like a good job by the crew, my hat is off to them.

Would have thought BA longhaul on the shorter flights will be doing the ferry fuel job into LHR as that is the cheapest way of doing it.

Idunno
30th Dec 2005, 22:01
What was the take-off runway?
Were ATC helpful (for a change)?
Just kidding 411.....

blackbox
30th Dec 2005, 23:12
Firstly, well done to the crew - for what is all in a days work!!

I just heard the liveatc online and another a/c reports seeing the flames 5 minutes after the event - the crew were very carm throughout....

Secondly, before the BA safety bashing starts - bearing in mind that BA operates 57 744, and is the largest operator of the type, with 228 on wing RB211, not including the 752/763 RR - i think that speaks for its self....

Question - in the 16mins, in the air is there time to use the fuel jettison on the opposite wing to the engine fire - or is this too dangerous?

Link to Liveatc - http://www.liveatc.net/.archive/kjfk/JFK-Twr-Dec-29-05-2300.mp3 (cleared for t/off 23mins into recording). *non commercial site.

Rainboe
31st Dec 2005, 00:09
What's this hangup with fuel jettison? Think about it- with a fire warning, are you going to stooge around dumping 2 tonnes/minute or is it better to get down without delay? They were very likely below max landing weight anyway. It is not an issue!

Joetom
31st Dec 2005, 00:23
Think they could remove fuel from one nozzle if they wanted, but belive balance of fuel remaining requires attention.

Would guess if flames reported, crew may not dump fuel.

Aircraft landing heavy is Ok me thinks.

Did they serve pre landing drinks to the pass, me thinks not.

Sounds like the crew operated by the numbers, easy to say, not always easy to do.

As always, good pilots and training often get super results, well done to all.

18-Wheeler
31st Dec 2005, 00:44
A 747 can land at max takeoff weight, and if it's a normal landing there will be no damage at all.
15 tonnes over is virtually nothing at all to be worried about - Certainly not even to be a consideration if the aeroplane is on fire.

very_interested
31st Dec 2005, 06:48
The said aircraft landed with 285 tons (tonnes) of fuel and 302 "people" on board. The microphones or the radio on Speedbird one sixteen were obviously much better by a long way than every other aircraft around at the time.

And why were the pilots so calm and collected? Did they automatically switch into "This is just an excersize in a simulator" mode?

I am awestruck! "like to confirm emergency services will be available but this should be a normal landing...."

Unreal.......

TopBunk
31st Dec 2005, 07:30
V-I

Highly doubt that they landed with 285 tonnes of fuel on board, as the QOTS on carries 173 tonnes when full;)

Suspect that you meant or misheard that it landed at 285 tonnes which is max landing weight.

very_interested
31st Dec 2005, 07:42
When asked the amount of fuel the radio operator replied 285 tons

When asked the numper of people the radio operator replied 302.

When asked did that include crew, the radio operator said I will have to get back to you.

If what you say about "Suspect that you meant or misheard that it landed at 285 tonnes" is correct the the guy on the radio was still calm and collected but he was not answering the ATC question correctly.

http://www.liveatc.net/.archive/kjfk/JFK-App-Dec-29-05-2330.mp3

Listen from 6:50 onwards.....

Edited to add the ATC link

Danny
31st Dec 2005, 10:11
In order to try and preserve some sense of debate, I have allowed 411A his one little 'dig'. It is to be expected, as he is applying his own personal experience which must be several decades out of date by now. What I don't need on here is all the Trolls who take the bait and flood the thread with useless dialogue about how incandescent with rage they are at his observations.

Learn to live with it and if you are so uncontrollably outraged, count to ten and then play the ball, not the player! :rolleyes: It is most likely to be bad for your health (mental and coronary) if I keep deleting your posts which you have undoubtedly spent time constructing because it is irrelevant to the thread topic.

On another note, I would again like to appeal to all non-airline pilots and assorted enthusiasts to refrain from making statements on this and other threads where operational and technical matters are being discussed. Questions are fine but comments that are so obviously made by someone who has little or no idea about 'the job' serve only to ridicule the poster and more often than not, lead to digression from the original topic. One example (chosen only because it is the most recent but there are many more) is these comments as made a few posts back:Think they could remove fuel from one nozzle if they wanted, but belive balance of fuel remaining requires attention.

Would guess if flames reported, crew may not dump fuel.

Aircraft landing heavy is Ok me thinks.

Did they serve pre landing drinks to the pass, me thinks not.

Sounds like the crew operated by the numbers, easy to say, not always easy to do.

As always, good pilots and training often get super results, well done to all.In other words, if you think, then you don't know and so you should be asking a question rather than trying to add in commentary to a thread that is of interest to all airline pilots, especially those that actually operate the same aircraft type as involved in this incident.

So, please stick to the topic otherwise your efforts may be wasted.

Captain Airclues
31st Dec 2005, 10:31
ATC asked the crew for their fuel remaining "in pounds", a figure that would not be readily available. As this was at a time of very high workload (turning onto the localiser at 2000ft), I suspect that the guy just gave them the landing weight as that would be the figure that was uppermost in his mind.
I gather that the entire crew, both flight crew and cabin crew, did a great job.

Airclues

Jumbo Driver
31st Dec 2005, 11:38
I couldn't agree more with what Danny has just posted.

The guys were faced with an emergency at or soon after rotation from 31L at Kennedy, which in itself is a relatively non-normal departure, requiring a left turn across Jamaica Bay almost immediately after becoming airborne. At this point, they were suddenly thrust into a quite different routine from that they were expecting by the surge or fire which occurred on the left side. At this stage we don't know much more except that the ATC exchanges are calm and efficient, indicating the likelihood of a similarly methodical approach to the problem within the flight deck itself. Well done to them, I say.

The short flight was sufficient to deal with the initial and secondary actions of the engine fire, to assess the situation with regard to the inevitable return, to configure the aircraft for such a return (at or around max landing weight), to set up the approach and to brief the cabin crew and passengers accordingly. The exchanges with ATC that I have heard were concise and efficient and JFK ATC were, as far as I could hear, helpful. The guys on the flight deck certainly had their hands full.

The matter of the question by ATC of the total number on board and the fuel remaining (in pounds) has been raised. Yes, the responses were incomplete - the fuel figure replied was probably the landing weight (metric tonnes) and I don't think it was clarified whether the total on board figure included the crew. However, the real question surely is whether ATC were right to be asking these details at what was probably a very busy and critical stage of the approach, as they were being vectored towards the localiser for their 31L approach. The Flight Plan (held by ATC) would clearly show the total on board and the fuel on board would have been that required for LHR, or about 7-8 hrs endurance (i.e. about half tanks). I don't believe there was much benefit to be gained from ATC asking these questions at this stage of the flight - full emergency services would be in attendance for the landing anyway.

In any event, these criticisms are minor. All in all, it was a successful operation and those involved - especially the crew - should be congratulated for achieving an excellent and thoroughly professional result.

Well done!

lomapaseo
31st Dec 2005, 13:35
So far I've heard no confirmation that there indeed was an engine fire requiring the crew to complete an engine fire drill and emergency return.

The only fire reports are from those on the ground and likely associated with an engine surge recoverable by shutting off the fuel.

One way of looking at this is from the crews standpoint of what displays did they have and considering the Tower call how to react accordingly.

So to me all the comments from those of us not aboard about the level of emergency and expected reactions from the crew are postulations or what ifs.

Golf Charlie Charlie
31st Dec 2005, 13:52
<<<
rotation from 31L at Kennedy, which in itself is a relatively non-normal departure
>>>

Not really - I've taken off from JFK 100 or so times over many years, and I reckon 31L was used on about 50-60% of those departures.

Carnage Matey!
31st Dec 2005, 13:55
But a turn at 500ft after departure is relatively non-normal.

Rainboe
31st Dec 2005, 14:10
If it was 31L, then normal procedure is to turn left at 300'. It is an exceptional requirement for that runway for noise reasons.

skiesfull
31st Dec 2005, 15:13
Just a few observations on some comments already posted:-
Boeing Flight Crew Training Manual B747-400 states " overweight landings may be accomplished by using normal landing procedures and techniques" - an engine out landing does not incur any extra landing distance.
If an engine fire is reported to the crew, who may not be in receipt of a warning in the cockpit, then a quick return and overweight landing may be desirable, rather than delay the approach for fuel-jettisoning.
I am not aware of any ATC flight plan containing such last-minute information such as fuel on board and persons on board. Some airports do request the total pax and crew on board when requesting start clearance, but I have never been asked for fuel on board even after declaring a Mayday for engine-fire after departure. TOB and dangerous goods-yes.
Well done to the crew-quick decision-making and obviously good CRM and co-operation from JFK ATC.

RatherBeFlying
31st Dec 2005, 15:18
Begging Danny's indulgence:

The 1998 SR111 Accident Report from TSB Canada (http://www.tsb.gc.ca/en/reports/air/1998/a98h0003/a98h0003.asp) shows how little time may be available in case of fire.

In this case, the report shows that the fire was progressing too rapidly to make a landing at an available airport. Since then the emphasis has been to get it on the ground ASAP whatever the weight.

DingerX
31st Dec 2005, 16:10
So far I've heard no confirmation that there indeed was an engine fire requiring the crew to complete an engine fire drill and emergency return.

The only fire reports are from those on the ground and likely associated with an engine surge recoverable by shutting off the fuel.

One of the problems is that the ATC archives linked above are missing the arrival/departure frequencies for the first seven minutes of the flight, and tower only has the first seven minutes. So you only hear BA 116 at the very start of the problem, and then again after the flames are extinguished. That said, here's what the tower recordings do say:
(times are EST according to the liveatc recordings):


2323:02 BA116 Cleared for T/O
2324:09 (TWR) "Speedbird 116 Heavy you got what appears to be some flames coming out one of your engines on the left side it appears"
2324:19 "116" (loud wooping sound in the background)
...
2325:10 UA840 (from ground), notes "I think that thing is gonna burn off" (This doesn't mean, as suggested above, that the "engine is gonna burn off", but more likely "the fire is gonna burn off")
2327:20 American 314 Kennedy TWR 31R you're clear to land
2327:24 Okay clear to land I understand you still have an emergency in progress
2327:27 Yes we do
2327:31 Oh yeah, I see him he's got flames comin out
2327:34 Yeah, we know that. We told him and we're working with him
2327:37 He knows that he's got flames
2327:39 Yes
...
2328:27 TWR Two things AA 314, I understand we're cleared to land 31R and also we don't see the flames coming out of his uh left side anymore.



So whatever it was, it burned for between 3 1/2 and 5 minutes.

You may continue speculating

sikeano
31st Dec 2005, 19:06
any one know the reason for fire ?
the atc link was very good

unmanned transport
1st Jan 2006, 06:12
Too many Rolls turning into Donks down thru the years.
Substandard mtce or substandard design ????

IFSDs of CF6-80s per flt hrs are less than Rolls.

very_interested
1st Jan 2006, 07:00
I posted on this thread because I was full of admiration for the crew of BA116. Just listening to the ATC tapes and hearing the calm in the voice of the pilot(s) was unreal.

Yep the ATC guy asked for the fuel remaining in pounds, and the guy on the radio responded with the maximum landing weight in tons... Listening to it again and again it seems obvious they were happy to come back and land as soon as possible. The pilots were comfortable with their weight. They were confident in the ability of their aircraft.

If some of the professionals here would like to incorporate this scenario into the training of aircrew that would be great.

As to the ATC asking fuel onboard and passengers. I have a sneaky feeling that may be a standard question that is required.

L337
1st Jan 2006, 07:51
unmanned transport:

IFSDs of CF6-80s per flt hrs are less than Rolls.

To prevent RR lawers arriving with a writ, maybe you might like to back up your assertion with some evidence?

L337

sikeano
1st Jan 2006, 09:15
Too many Rolls turning into Donks down thru the years.
Substandard mtce or substandard design ????

IFSDs of CF6-80s per flt hrs are less than Rolls.


i do not think the design of the rolls engine are substandard ba have a good reputation for their mtce could be fatigue these planes do not get any rest unlike us humans they go normally 25 hours in a day

easyprison
1st Jan 2006, 09:24
Watchdog slams BA’s air safety

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2087-1965953,00.html

Off the front page of today's sunday times

:ouch:

BenThere
1st Jan 2006, 09:27
The lowest max landing weight on a -200 or later 747 is 630,000 lbs. Landing in excess is allowed, the critical factor being sink rate at touchdown, which if more than 300 fpm could cause landing gear collapse or structural breakup. Max landing weight for runway length must also be calculated. If the aircraft weighed 570,000 lbs., the crew knew at the initial takeoff brief they were capable of an immediate return and landing. Assuming there were no deferred maintenance discrepancies, such as an inoperative brake or anti-skid, which penalize max landing weight.

M.Mouse
1st Jan 2006, 10:07
Since The Times started to compete with the ghastly UK tabloids I stopped reading it.

Hands up the airline of comparable size which has a perfect maintenance record.

skiesfull
1st Jan 2006, 11:22
Ben There
Max landing weight in kilos for the B747-400 is 285,763kgs, at this weight max rate of descent at touchdown from Boeing is apparently 600fpm. The max take-off weight for most pax -400s is 397,893kgs - the max R.O.D. at touchdown at this weight is 360fpm. Such a rate of descent would be considered a"hard landing". Overweight landings up to max take-off weight are now not restricted to emergencies, but are (apparently) an option to the pilot for other considerations. If you can get airborne at max weight, then in most circumstances, you should be able to land on the same runway, without the need to dump fuel. It is an option, not a directive! In my opinion, it would need very careful consideration and a bit of nerve to do so.

BenThere
1st Jan 2006, 11:39
Skiesful,

You're right, the max sink at max weight is 360 fpm.

I fly the -200 which max lands at 630,000. Was thinking the -400 had substantially higher gross weight limits for landing as well as takeoff. Not trying to wiggle, but those numbers are as old as the airplanes. If I am landing a 747 above max gross weight, I'm going to make the touchdown as soft as I can. A normal landing at 300 fpm is firm at any weight.

A key point I was trying to make is that in this incident, with the aircraft below normal landing weight, the crew discarded the need to dump during the takeoff brief, so it wasn't a factor. I agree that an airplane on fire needs to get on the ground and landing heavy is much better than delaying to dump as a rule.

Whatever you do, you're going to be standing at the end of the long mahogony table with no ashtrays explaining yourself.

HotDog
1st Jan 2006, 12:23
Very interested and Capt. Airclues, ATC requested fuel on board and being America, that would be the weight in pounds. Answer was 285 tons which equals 129,276 Kgs. Not an unreasonable trans Atlantic fuel load to be expected. Pretty switched on crew, I would think.

skiesfull
1st Jan 2006, 12:39
Admittedly, I was in school many,many years ago, but even then 285 tons (or tonnes) approximated to 285,000kgs!!!!

TyroPicard
1st Jan 2006, 12:45
HotDog .... reality check

285 ton [short, US] = 258,547.6509 kilogram

285,000 pound = 129.27382545 metric ton

TP

HotDog
1st Jan 2006, 13:37
Skiesfull and Tyro, your figures are absolutely right, same as they were when I went to school also, probably a long time before you.:{ Although the answer to the fuel on board query was 285 tons, with a metric mind at 2,000" on an engine out approach, I probably would have answered 285 tons instead of pounds and 285,000Lbs was 129,276 Kgs when I went to school or whenever I signed the fuel uplift docket.

unmanned transport
1st Jan 2006, 16:55
Watchdog slams BA’s air safety

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article...965953,00.html
*****************************************
Systemic problems!!

Will they make it into the EU "blacklist" of unsafe airlines?

Jet II
1st Jan 2006, 17:31
Will they make it into the EU "blacklist" of unsafe airlines?

can you call it a 'blacklist' now?:uhoh:

after all:

Crime Museum's nickname 'racist'

An Asian officer has complained that using the name "Black Museum" for the Metropolitan Police's famous archive of crime artefacts is racist.

from the Beeb (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/london/4569006.stm)

Fargoo
1st Jan 2006, 17:50
The Sunday Times.

Made me laugh reading that article today then noticing what service they were advertising along the bottom of the front page :D

It seems to me they've taken a few of the stories from PPRUNE, shaved some stuff from the AAIB reports and put the lot in the blender.
One of the incidents mentioned hasn't even been investigated to completion yet but that didn't stop them concluding it was a maintenance error.

I'm sure the AAIB will love being called a Watchdog now. Maybe that's against their human right being called dogs??

Lastly, David Learjet - :( disappointed with that comment.

Can't fault the Times for their integrity, biggest news of the day - Ukraines gas supply switched off by the Russians for possible politically motivated purposes yet they decide to launch a full scale attack on us.

Rant over ;)

M.Mouse
1st Jan 2006, 17:59
I probably would have answered 285 tons instead of pounds and 285,000Lbs was 129,276 Kgs

BA do not use lbs. in its calculations for fuel or performance, only kgs. and, therefore, tonnes.

285 tonnes is a BA 747-400's MLW.

Terrific isn't it that unmanned transport, in his or her haste to publicise the Times article, cannot be bothered to read the entire thread and therefore repeats the post 8 posts above.

RRAAMJET
1st Jan 2006, 20:51
:ok:
Well done, BA crew...Rainboe, couldn't agree more with your earlier comments (I'm one of the few here in the US who agrees with the LAX BA continuing policy from a few months ago...let's face it - most BA crews know what the hell they're doing, and it shows.)

This incident is very similar to one that occured at Cathay when I was there:
the #1, I believe, went kaboom and burned on take-off from Kai Tak for FRA; the Capt and crew did an excellent turn-back in crummy wx to 31 at max weight with the motor still burning (Capt said to me in the bar he could see the glow reflected on his windshield post - no pressure, eh?). No dump, I recall, due fire. They had a body-gear fire on stopping and evac in record time...all-round well-done.

There must be piccies here somewhere on PPRUNE from that one. Capt's retired now, but his crew are still around posting on pprune - maybe they can comment on this BA crew's performance with authority, having been there themselves?

PS flown rollers for most of my 000's of hours - great engines. What a load of b*llox posted about build quality, reliability etc by previous amateur troller. :hmm:

Joetom
1st Jan 2006, 23:31
Would guess in hindsight question about fuel and pax was not perfect in said conditions.

With regards to the Engines fitted, I like to travel when I see PW4000 or those CF6-80 fitted to the pylons, am talking about dash 400 or 767, when I travel on 777/330 and others, belive RR is Perfect.

Maybe RR have fixed -400/767 problems now.

Joetom
1st Jan 2006, 23:45
Anyone know what problem was, HP Turbine saying good by may bee.

Am sure the AAIB will fix the problem.???

Sunfish
2nd Jan 2006, 05:56
From Today's "The Australian";

" Cracks appear in British airline safety
Steve Creedy, Aviation writer
January 02, 2006

A STRING of midair incidents involving British Airways, one of the three European airlines servicing Australia, has raised questions about widespread safety problems at the airline.

A report by Britain's Air Accident Investigation Branch found BA jets suffered mid-air failures because of "systemic" problems with the carrier's maintenance.

After inquiries into four mid-air incidents, investigators said safety problems could be "widespread within the organisation", The Sunday Times newspaper in London revealed yesterday.

Investigators warned that shoddy work practices appeared to be accepted as the norm by some BA maintenance staff.

The newspaper listed a series of incidents, including a door that ripped off a Boeing 777 at 6000 feet.






The door gouged the plane's fuselage and narrowly missed a couple walking below when it hit the ground.

In another incident, fuel gushed out of a plane that had just taken off from Heathrow Airport, leaving a two-kilometre vapour trail, because screws and a cap that should have plugged a hole were left inside the tank.

And the pilots of a Boeing 757 were forced to put on oxygen masks and land as their cabin filled with oil fumes. It was later confirmed that engineers put too much oil in the jet.

Maintenance workers in late 2003 also forgot to properly reattach two wing panels on a Paris-bound Boeing 757 that then responded abnormally to the flight controls.

As the captain prepared to land and the autopilot was disconnected, the plane started drifting to the right, forcing the pilot to take corrective action.

And investigators said the failure to check the wing panels were installed did not appear to be an isolated incident.

"Ineffective supervision of maintenance staff had allowed working practices to develop that had compromised the level of airworthiness control and had become accepted as the norm," they said.

"Maintenance errors were not the result of wilful negligence, or any desire to perform a less-than-satisfactory job, but the result of a combination of systemic issues that had increased the probability of an error being committed."

The criticism from the AAIB is unprecedented for an airline that has claimed a reputation for having one of the best-maintained fleets in the world.

Although BA has recently relied increasingly on codeshare flights with Qantas to get its passengers to and from Australia, it still flies its own planes to Melbourne and Sydney.

A spokesman for the Civil Aviation Safety Authority said yesterday the Australian regulator was unaware of the report and was unlikely to take action.

He said CASA would leave any action to the British regulator, which it recognised as the competent authority.

A Qantas spokeswoman could not say whether the airline had work done on its aircraft by British Airways Engineering, BA's maintenance section.

However, BA told The Sunday Times it took the safety report "very seriously" and had addressed the problems in its maintenance processes.

"British Airways prides itself on safety and recognises that we are always ready to learn from incidents and encourage open transparent reporting," said the airline's head of safety, Captain Rod Young.

The airline now has only 6000 engineers, compared with 9500 in 1995, despite its fleet remaining at a similar size to 10 years ago, with 288 aircraft. "

unmanned transport
2nd Jan 2006, 06:14
Three major engine '47 incidents in the past few months is not good.

gas path
2nd Jan 2006, 07:15
It did NOT catch fire!
The IP and LP turbine has failed. The 30 ft??!! (or 30 mile:rolleyes: ) flames or whatever were the result of the surging and subsequent turbine failure.
The fire bottle . . . . YES only ONE was used, would appear to have been precautionary and no disc failed. The HPT appears on the face to be intact.
All the same it is an interesting failure of what is normally a very robust engine.

M.Mouse
2nd Jan 2006, 10:30
With regards to the Engines fitted, I like to travel when I see PW4000 or those CF6-80 fitted to the pylons, am talking about dash 400 or 767, when I travel on 777/330 and others, belive RR is Perfect.

Maybe RR have fixed -400/767 problems now.

joetom

For the benefit of those of us who only fly the things can you supply and explain the statistics that you base your decisions on?

Which area of engine design and maintenance are you involved in?

lomapaseo
2nd Jan 2006, 12:58
joetom

For the benefit of those of us who only fly the things can you supply and explain the statistics that you base your decisions on?

Which area of engine design and maintenance are you involved in?

When I read his post all I interpreted was they were his opinions.

Opinions can be soft or hard (data based and/or feelies).

I certainly wouldn't expect somebody would try to explain why they feel someway except while laying on a couch. :hmm:

Rainboe
2nd Jan 2006, 14:48
The problem is trying to have a technical discussion when what appears to be flightsim pilots with the ability to manage a take off and landing on a computer involve themselves in technical matters under discussion here like Joetom with his daft, garbled and meaningless statements!

The problem with anonymous forums is people can pass themselves off as airline pilots! What nonsense they say can actually do damage of its own! We have seen people who know nothing involving themselves in jettison threads here and elsewhere. It is very important for these people to say on what basis they speak.

Sunfish
2nd Jan 2006, 20:13
Exactly Rainboe! Got it in one! Now as a seasoned perfesionul, please tell us all why the pilot didn't pull the "engine jettison" handle?:p

There are any number of reasons the thing could have failed, NGV's, blades, etc, etc. Question is when was the last borescope inspection and what was the state of the module versus BA's limits? You will have to wait for the experts.

skiesfull
2nd Jan 2006, 20:20
The engine jettison handle was removed recently on the grounds of economy, as were the flight crews ejection seats!

banana head
2nd Jan 2006, 20:36
Engine Jettison handles??

Haven't seen these recently, I thought they went out with P45 levers:E

Full Emergency
2nd Jan 2006, 21:57
Having flown BA numerous times, and actually working at LHR on Full Emergencys, all I can do is to take my hat off to the flight and cabin crew who clearly did a great job gettin that a/c on the ground ASAP. The passengers must have said something and unless that is controlled quickly, it can become more of a danger than the suspected fire on board.

From a ground Ops point of view, an over-weight a/c is not a major problem. We will just simply close off the periminter roads surrounding LHR incase it doesn't manage to stop in time. The likely hood of that happening at LHR with the length of our runways, is slim, but we take no chances.

FE

scotsflyingboy
2nd Jan 2006, 23:43
Hmmm, considering past big airways modus operandi, I'm surprised they didn't just keep going on with three...:}


411A is it possible your wallet just fell out and caused the engine problem?
These boys and girls did a great job!

Alls well that ends well...:ok:

ALLDAYDELI
3rd Jan 2006, 10:11
A collegue from BA ops told me the day BEFORE this event, ANOTHER BA B744had to 3x engine ferry JFK-CWL with an engine problem @ JFK.
Got 1/2 way across the pond and fumes/smoke were reported in the cockpit. From what I heard, aircraft continued to CWL as there were nil pax aboard, loadings from JFK that night were low and pax transferred to other flights.

GearDown&Locked
3rd Jan 2006, 10:41
The engine jettison handle was removed recently on the grounds of economy, as were the flight crews ejection seats!


Please don't tell me that they've removed the pax parachutes as well?!!

Captain Airclues
3rd Jan 2006, 10:50
ALLDAYDELI

I suggest that you treat future information from your 'colleague from BA ops' with suspicion. The flight that diverted to Cardiff was a positioning flight with full cabin crew, two staff passengers and 18 tons of cargo (covered in full on a previous thread). It was not a 3-engine ferry, as neither cabin crew, cargo or passengers are allowed to be carried on these flights.

Airclues

ALLDAYDELI
3rd Jan 2006, 12:31
Airclues sir.
I trawled some older threads and indeed the event which I refer to has been covered. It was clear to me from the informant that it was a positioning/ferry flight, no live traffic. What I will say is that his information is usually 100% spot on.

411A
3rd Jan 2006, 14:58
<<These boys and girls did a great job!>>
Yes, I expect they did, Scotsflyingboy, and of course my previous was in the category of...

It's a joke, son

But I suppose this was lost on a few.

Wallet...ah, no, as it might well be rather empty shortly as my company is about to purchase a JetStar...the Lockheed variety.
Nothing but the best for us, you understand....;) :E

Taildragger
3rd Jan 2006, 16:16
Quote
The airline now has only 6000 engineers, compared with 9500 in 1995, despite its fleet remaining at a similar size to 10 years ago, with 288 aircraft. "
Unquote

In line with BA's Outsourcing policies, I would surmise that this would be because some contract work is done by Overseas and UK Engineering contractors, who are Non BA direct Employees.
But the statistic looks good in the Daily Mail.!

mary_hinge
3rd Jan 2006, 17:02
In June 1995, amongst other types BA operated 33 B737-200s, 31 B747-100 and 200 aircraft, 6 DC10 and 6 L1011s, not forgetting 6 Concordes: As an educated guess I would say that these fleet types required 33 to 50% more maintenance than today’s more modern fleet.

Add in to the equation a number of line stations that have been out-sourced, the closure of the Manchester maintenance hangar, selling the engine overhaul facility in Wales and the overall sum 9500 down to 6000 looks quite reasonable!

gas path
4th Jan 2006, 17:13
Well 'ere is a piccy sent to me of the errant powerplant:uhoh:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v462/gaspath/DSC00597.jpg

ps it's dead easy to boroscope now:ooh:
pps here one can see typical impulse/reaction turbine blades. . . .or rather lack of.:p :8 :p

Hand Solo
4th Jan 2006, 17:16
Tested satis on ground please report further.;)

NigelOnDraft
4th Jan 2006, 18:32
Minor Heat Damage - Inspect every 1000 hrs :)

lomapaseo
4th Jan 2006, 18:45
Well it certainly doesn't look like mechanical damage in this section. The problem affecting this section might have started further forward.

Does anybody know if this is the HP, IP or LP

At least one can see the results of leaving the fuel petcock on after the air pressure pretty much quits. Pretty typical of an engine cock-up during a high crew workload like a takeoff.

ubreakemifixem
4th Jan 2006, 19:54
Aircraft now back at LHR.Engine changed a good job done by all concerned.

lhrspanner
4th Jan 2006, 20:03
Lets not forget British Airways annually carries more than 36 million air travellers on 360,000 flights safely.

Unexpected failures will always happen, and in this instance the tech crews actions and training saved the day.

Well done:)

Full Emergency
4th Jan 2006, 21:34
Aircraft now back at LHR.Engine changed a good job done by all concerned.

Would have loved to have seen that being done..........:ok:

gas path
4th Jan 2006, 22:38
Does anybody know if this is the HP, IP or LP


The HPT looks to be intact . . . . unless there's more missing at the bottom:ugh: what you can see there is the 3 stages (stubs:ooh: ) of the LPT and the single stage of IPT, forward of that is the HPT NGV's that in this half look ok except for the mechanical damage to the trailing edge.


coor! I've got a rep power of 7 whats that good or bad?:confused:

keel beam
4th Jan 2006, 23:11
With regards to the Engines fitted, I like to travel when I see PW4000 or those CF6-80 fitted to the pylons, am talking about dash 400 or 767, when I travel on 777/330 and others, belive RR is Perfect.

Are these the same PW4000 that had 2 serious fire incidents in FCO in 2004?

Techman
4th Jan 2006, 23:21
Looks like the company BBQ was a great success! Oi Nigel! I said rare, not well done!

banana head
5th Jan 2006, 01:18
First engine jettison handles, now a fuel 'petcock' ?
Was I absent from groundschool the day these items were covered?? :confused:

At least one can see the results of leaving the fuel petcock on after the air pressure pretty much quits. Pretty typical of an engine cock-up during a high crew workload like a takeoff. ???

Sunfish
5th Jan 2006, 01:32
Petcock? The Dart had a sniffle valve! By the way a certain amount of wear on the trailing edge of the NGV's is acceptable in some engines.

lomapaseo
5th Jan 2006, 02:08
The HPT looks to be intact . . . . unless there's more missing at the bottom:ugh: what you can see there is the 3 stages (stubs:ooh: ) of the LPT and the single stage of IPT, forward of that is the HPT NGV's that in this half look ok except for the mechanical damage to the trailing edge.


coor! I've got a rep power of 7 whats that good or bad?:confused:


When you figure out whether a high rep number is good or bad tell me

I wondered if it was the number of time my posts had been reported to a moderator for violations :}

Back to the engine, thanks for explaining the stages, I think.

I agree the nozzle vanes at the front sure do look like inlet vanes coming out of the burner. But to me I can count three stages of stator stumps and three stages of tubine gas path seals (your expertise). Those inlet vanes are mostly damages at midspan and not much near the outer so in my mind that is thermal flame damage and not mechanical damage.

I'll be curious to what more gets said about this although it probably is of low interest to most folks.

BOAC
5th Jan 2006, 11:20
Looks very much like a Pegasus I once 'borrowed' from HMQ and trashed:)