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rotornut
12th Jan 2006, 11:05
GLOBEANDMAIL.COM

Bombardier sued over 2004 jet crash By BERTRAND MAROTTE

Wednesday, January 11, 2006 Page B5

MONTREAL -- Bombardier Inc. has been named as a defendant in two lawsuits seeking a total of $200-million (U.S.) in damages over the deaths of an airline pilot and co-pilot whose CRJ-200 jet crashed outside Jefferson City, Mo., in the fall of 2004.

Aviation litigation firm Motley Rice LLC said yesterday it has launched the suits -- alleging defective parts and poor maintenance -- against Montreal-based Bombardier as well as suppliers General Electric Co., Honeywell International Inc., Northwest Airlines Corp. and others.

The suit comes less than a year after Bombardier was cleared of any negligence in a high-profile lawsuit over the death of professional golfer Payne Stewart and five others in the crash of one of its Learjets.

In the world of aviation litigation, neatly proving that the negligence of a manufacturer or parts-supplier is what caused the crash of an aircraft is a tough, high-stakes game, said one veteran aviation lawyer.

"The plaintiff has got an uphill battle," said Phillip Kolczynski, of Santa Ana, Calif.

"That is a tough one to win. You've got to eliminate so many other factors and prove conclusively that a certain part had a design or manufacturing defect."

Bert Cruikshank, a spokesman for Bombardier Aerospace, said the company cannot comment on the two suits over the crash of Northwest subsidiary Pinnacle Airways Flight 708 because the incident is still being probed.

"The Pinnacle accident remains under investigation by the [U.S.] National Transportation Safety Board," he said.

"We have provided them with every co-operation and our expertise and we are fully involved with the investigation."

Bombardier's 50-seat CRJ-200 is the flagship aircraft of the company. Mr. Cruikshank said it has an impeccable safety record.

Motley Rice alleges that Flight 708 took off from Little Rock, Ark., at 9:21 p.m. en route to Minneapolis-St. Paul, a repositioning flight with no passengers aboard.

After reaching the manufacturer's authorized altitude ceiling of 41,000 feet, which offers greater fuel economy, the aircraft was unable to hold its altitude, according to allegations filed in Circuit Court in Broward County, Fla.

The plane then experienced failures of both engines and attempts to restart them were unsuccessful, according to the allegations.

A key part used in engine restarts failed and a GE-manufactured engine oil pump malfunctioned, according to the filing.

Prior to the incident, the flight had already been postponed once that morning because of maintenance problems, according to the allegations.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/ArticleNews/TPStory/LAC/20060111/RBOMB11/TPBusiness/?query=bombardier

Clandestino
12th Jan 2006, 19:38
There's just no way this lawsuit can be won.

Notwithstanding the manner in which accident aircraft arrived at FL410, ceilings are given as density altitude, not pressure altitude. It's just too bad that the Motley Rice lawyers don't understand this.

And fact that our two colleagues didn't understand it either proved to be tragic.

barit1
13th Jan 2006, 13:23
Can you say chatzpah?

M80
13th Jan 2006, 14:21
Yes, but I don't know what it means... I even looked it up and think you mean 'chutzpah'; (Utter nerve; effrontery: “has the chutzpah to claim a lock on God and morality”)

Not having a go, as I had to look up the meaning. Thanks for expanding my vocabulary :ok:

barit1
13th Jan 2006, 15:24
My bad. Of course it is Chutzpah. :{

The classic definition is the guy who murders his parents, then pleads for mercy because he is an orphan. :p

Drop and Stop
14th Jan 2006, 11:51
I believe the two pilots were nominated and came very close to winning the Darwin Awards for 2004!

Elliot Moose
14th Jan 2006, 19:15
The father of one of the pilots actually apologized to the NTSB inquiry for the gross negligence of his son in the incident, and now he's suing for it!
Obviously some low life, ambulance chasing TV lawyer type came running in and told the bereaved that they'd just won the lottery and he'd get them a couple of mil in pocket if they would agree to sue for 100mil. :yuk: :yuk:

The sad part is that they will likely win on the premise that BBD should have anticipated two clowns might jump into a jet, take it to the edge of it's flight envelope at a speed that was truly comical, engage in some unusual attitudes and extreme aerobatics, fail to follow the checklist and still expect to have the poor rig restart just as happily as if it were sitting at the gate on the day of its delivery. And that notwithstanding the fact that the guys who picked it up on the day of its delivery likely rolled it on the way home!

Of course there's a rumour that the Chinese may sue because another one failed to fly with a huge layer of frozen slush on the wings about 5 months later.......

ICT_SLB
15th Jan 2006, 04:25
Of course there's a rumour that the Chinese may sue because another one failed to fly with a huge layer of frozen slush on the wings about 5 months later.......

And covered the available over-run at the end of the runway with sundry large steel objects - the entire lake fleet laid up for the Winter!

junior_man
15th Jan 2006, 15:14
Lawyers try these things in the hope that the manufacturer will decide that rather than spend $50,000 defending themselves in court, they will just settle for the $50,000 without running any risk and make the problem go away.
Legally it made sense but it just encouraged more of the same behavior.
If they do go to court, they do run a risk. You never know what a jury will decide. I sat on a jury once in a medical liability lawsuit. The plaintiffs never even came close to proving their case, the defence buried them after that and yet, when we went to the jury room to decide, three of the jurors wanted to find for the plaintiffs. They felt sorry for her. We did find for the defendants but it took a few hours.
It is a shame this stuff goes on. There are certainly times when lawsuits are valid but the silly ambulance chaser stuff gives excuses for those who would like to close that avenue completely.

rotornut
15th Jan 2006, 16:24
Popular Mechanics has an article on the crash:
http://www.popularmechanics.com/science/aviation/2156137.html

Elliot Moose
16th Jan 2006, 01:09
I don't think that I have ever seriously flamed somebody on a board before, but......
Mr. O the S&L you should never have been flying the CRJ if you don't know
a)why the ceiling is 410
b)what the 500fpm climb thing means
c)the fact that the FMS does not work like that when giving available cruise altitudes

a) the ceiling is 410 due to the max dif on the pressurization and allowable cabin alts at max dif under the FAR's. Let me ask you: What altitude does a loaded 747 go to initially? It sure as hell ain't the published ceiling!!:eek: To get there, you have to be light, and on a loooonnnnnggg leg. Guess what? The same goes for a CRJ! Funny that... I have been up there in a CRJ on a properly planned leg, and I got there as per the AFM. It sure wasn't on a leg the length those guys were flying! At their weight, 410 was attainable on the day of the crash, but they didn't maintain a safe airspeed because they didn't have the DISTANCE to get to 410 at a safe speed. How many times did you have a 172 to its max alt, or a Navaho? The only thing I ever took to max alt regularly was a Beech 1900D and that's because they made an aircraft with the wing and engines for FL350 and flat sides! Guess what? They could only get a very low max diff before those flat sides tried to become round, so they had to limit it....again based on cabin alt. But don't get me started on that lousy aircraft AGAIN!

b) Yes, ATC does generally expect 500fpm on a climb, and that's why the 500fpm chart is most often referred to. BUT, the 500fpm thing in the charts (as well as the 300 and 100 fpm charts which are included and also safe to fly if you know what you're doing) is based on flying the airspeed schedule posted at the bottom of the chart. In no case does it involve flying at less than .70 mach, or manoeuvring outside of certain limits. That's because at excessively slow speeds, one can easily end up behind the power curve and unable to accelerate to cruise speed. Check with any nearby private pilot and you will be told the various ramifications of flying in slow flight.... FAA CRJ's even have a neat little green line that is set at 1.27 times the stall speed (which is close enough to Vmd for me on most days) which they were flying well below.

c) the FMS climb capability is based on some really simple stuff and was never meant to replace the AFM/QRH/FPCCM etc. It's in the limitations, and only in there to prevent extreme goof ups like planning an 80 mile leg at FL 310.

It's a REGIONAL jet, not an A380! Its computer doesn't hold your hand at every turn. It does assume that people flying it have some clue as to how to manage a jet aircraft, or at least how to read the manual and find out.

My apologies if I have appeared condescending, but statements like these really grind my gears.

Huck
16th Jan 2006, 04:21
[...]proving that the negligence of a manufacturer or parts-supplier is what caused the crash of an aircraft is a tough, high-stakes game[....]

Proof of negligence is not necessary.

Product liability in the states is a strict liability area. Under this type of case, i.e. either manuacturing or design defect, ONLY causation needs to be proven. Bombardier's performance is not the issue. They could have done the absolute best job possible and still be held liable, if a part can be proven to have caused the accident.

Brian_Dunnigan
16th Jan 2006, 06:37
I agree with junior man...there are too many dodgy lawyers wanting to be the next DA or Attorney-General...we need common sense limitations on these suits, although common sense these days is a rare commodity to find!

barit1
16th Jan 2006, 13:44
It all goes to show you: you get what you pay for.

This crew showed no appreciation for the fundamentals of aircraft performance - if they had done even a cursory check of the CRJ capability at an above-standard SAT they would be alive today. Those performance charts DO have meaning.

Or to put it another way: there are three kinds of people - those who learn from their own mistakes, those who learn from others' mistakes,

...and those who never learn.
Old thread on Pinnacle accident (http://www.pprune.org/forums/showthread.php?t=148490)

MungoP
16th Jan 2006, 14:40
Generally I'm extremely reluctant to criticize a crew..."There but for the grace of God etc..." and we all have off days...and which of us hasn't pushed a little too hard on occasion ? But from the CVR and FDR evidence it's difficult to have any empathy with these two guys....
Not only did they display a criminal lack of awareness of the basic principles of light but when some superbly designed technology gave them repeated 'wake-up' calls they chose not simply to ignore them but consciously attempted to over-ride them....
The one saving grace of this accident... and no thanks to the crew... was that no one else suffered in the final outcome....

jondc9
18th Jan 2006, 21:56
a lot of talk about ''ceilings" here. back in the good old days there was service ceiling and absolute ceiling.

now a days there is maximum certified altitude. I don't have the book on the CRJ. I don't think its much of a plane in my view, but I have only flown in back and it shuddered while the pilot banked 30 degrees!

if the book says it can go to FL410 then it should have gotten there safely with the patience of the crew. as to density altitude vs pressure altitude the thing is it is so cold by the time you get up there, aren't they really pretty darn close...its not like taking off from a 6200'msl airport successfully on a cold day and falling out of the sky on a hot day.


I do know this. OFTEN manufacturers make claims that only test pilots can make happen. AND , I learned about how the portion of the engine can quit turning and make relight difficult.


So, if I were king I would limit the CRJ to 35000' lower if weight requires. AND all airplanes would have emergency glide procedures placarded on the instrument panel. AND, the AIRBUS 300 should have a placcard that says limit rudder movement to less than half throw above 150 knots.


AND

AND

AND :-)

jon

MarkD
19th Jan 2006, 05:40
jondc9

would the pilots be able to see out the window with all your placards? :rolleyes:

barit1
19th Jan 2006, 13:37
Under new FAR's, the plane cannot fly until the weight of placards is at least 33.33% of MTOGW.

20driver
19th Jan 2006, 15:48
In Chuck Yeager's book he mentioned how many hot shot test pilots ended up in a great smoking hole because they would not read the manual before flight. In one funny bit he describes how a buddy parked his shiny new jet in the wall of the hanger. Seems to still be happening.

jondc9
20th Jan 2006, 00:16
Placcards:

I once flew a deilghtful plane called the Sabreliner. Just wonderful. If I could afford a brand new one today, it would be my corporate jet of choice.

It had a placcard. "no more than half controlwheel throw above 30,000'".

I believed it and never ever went beyond half throw above 30k.

It didn't take up too much room on the instrument panel. I took it to FL450 once, autopilot inop. Very demanding but dooable. But it was like balancing a bubble on a pin.

Like I said before, I flew in the back of a CRJ and perhaps 3000'msl the pilot banked (no more than 30 degrees) and I could feel the plane shudder.


Oh well.

jon

chuks
20th Jan 2006, 08:53
Just what we need is another lawyer trying to sell 12 jurors a cock-and-bull story about how these two poor souls were assaulted by some killer piece of machinery.

Looking for a 500 fpm climb to max altitude by setting that in the autopilot and then not bothering to think what it meant to see the airspeed bleeding off ... what were those guys thinking of, anyway? Didn't anyone ever tell them not to use 'Vertical Speed' mode for extended climbs, for just this reason?

In a way, this lawsuit will now drag all their foolish mistakes out into the open to blacken their memories where otherwise they would have been decently left as just another safety case. Just wait for newspaper articles meant to show that we are all just 'cowboys.' Everyone will lose from this one.

In fact, I would assume the insurance company will be attempting to recover some of their costs from the dead crew's estates, as usually happens. What a mess!

Willie Everlearn
20th Jan 2006, 19:29
:confused:
V/S is not a climb profile for this aircraft. Never has and unlikely ever will be.
The climb profile for most CRJ operators is 290/.70. Including Pinnacle.
So what's the problem?
:confused:

PPRuNe Towers
20th Jan 2006, 19:59
And on that topic Willie today's International Herald Tribune has a large report regarding what might be a similar fatal crash.

http://www.iht.com/articles/2006/01/19/news/venezuela.php

Investigators, who spoke on condition of anonymity because official statements are supposed to come from Venezuela, said that the plane appeared to react just as a 2002 Boeing service bulletin said an MD-82 would react after making a rapid climb from 31,000 feet to 33,000 feet, or 9,450 to 10,000 meters.

The investigators said records they had examined indicated that, after the plane reached 33,000 feet, the autopilot kept working for about six minutes to keep the craft flying at the proper altitude. When the autopilot could do no more, it abruptly shut off - as it is designed to do - and the crew was suddenly confronted with a jet that needed a larger dose of power and a steady hand to keep it flying.

Investigators said the crew apparently did not notice anything amiss, and may not have been familiar with the 2002 service directive.
As older jetliners are released by major airlines, they are often sold to countries in South America and Africa where training may be less profound than in Europe or the United States, and where such directives do not always reach everyone. The plane was built in 1986 by McDonnell Douglas, which later merged with Boeing.

A Nov. 22 interim official report from the Comité de Investigación de Acci-dentes Aéreos of Venezuela, approved by assisting investigation agencies in France, the United States and Colombia, did not mention the 2002 Boeing bulletin because it had not yet been discovered in the normal investigative process. The report did not reach any conclusions about what caused the crash of the twin-engine Boeing MD-82.

A 2002 Boeing bulletin warned that planes in the MD-80 family, including the one that crashed, should not be set on autopilot to climb at too high a rate. After leveling off, Boeing said, the engine power setting could be slightly too low, and "the airplane could decelerate into a stall warning before the autopilot trips off."

That can happen in such a subtle way, the bulletin said, that several minutes could go by while the autopilot is trying to compensate for deteriorating speed, and pilots might not notice until stall warnings suddenly begin sounding. The investigators said that while it was too early to draw any conclusions, that sounds very similar to what happened to the West Caribbean aircraft.

Investigators and aviation professionals, who said they could not be identified because of rules forbidding any information to be released except in official statements, said it was clear that whatever happened, the crew then took actions that would never allow the plane to recover.

The interim report contained a wealth of details from the plane's flight data recorder and cockpit voice recorder, showing that the crew was incorrect in saying that the plane had experienced a "dual engine flameout," and that the crew took the opposite action to recover from an aircraft stall than action that is taught to every beginner pilot. That suggests that the crew did not recognize that the plane was, in effect, stalling.

According to evidence found in the wreckage, the crew pulled the control yoke back toward their chests as they went down, which would raise the nose and lower speed, preventing air from flowing over the wing properly.
The official report said that about 20 minutes before the crash, the plane made a routine climb from 31,000 feet to 33,000 feet. The engines were operating properly at that time, the report said.

About 90 seconds after the plane reached 33,000 feet, it began to slow down for reasons that are not clear. The plane's autopilot began to point the plane's nose up slightly in an effort to compensate for the slowing speed and keep the plane at 33,000 feet. During this time, both engines still appeared to be operating normally, the interim re-port said.

About eight minutes after first leveling at 33,000 feet, the autopilot disengaged and the plane began to descend. The autopilot is designed to disengage on its own if it cannot control an air-craft in extreme situations.
This was about three minutes and 30 seconds before impact. That means the plane was descending at an average of almost 10,000 feet a minute, almost a free fall. A controlled but rapid descent would be about 3,000 feet a minute.

The right engine went to idle shortly after the descent began, although there is no indication why, according to the interim report. It is possible the crew reduced the engine to idle for a moment while trying to troubleshoot their problem. Because of the problem with the flight data recorder, it is unclear what the power settings were on the left engine during this time, although both engines were turning at high speed later at the time of impact.

Almost a minute after the descent began, or two minutes and 46 seconds before impact, the loud stall warning sounded, according to the interim report which has been made public.

After a stall warning sounds, crews are trained to bring the nose of the plane down to allow the plane to gain speed. Stall warnings are designed to engage well before an actual stall, loudly warning the crew of the potential danger.

But the flight data recorder indicated that the crew kept pulling the control yoke backward, reaching a maximum 12 degree nose-up position and holding the yoke there all the way to the ground. The attention of air traffic controllers at Maracaibo was aroused by the crew's sudden and continuous requests for lower altitude.

"The flight crew states that they had a dual engine flameout when asked by ATC if they had a problem," the report said. ATC refers to air traffic control. That was one of the last reports from the plane.

jondc9
20th Jan 2006, 23:32
the author of the md80 article is a fine writer, formerly from the Washington POST. I have spoken with him many times.

There have been many "boo boos" with people trying to fly planes too high and too high a weight. Yes an ISAPlus day makes it even worse.

I want to convey a funny story in a way. I went to interview for a pilot position with a very large freight company that seems to like to paint their planes BROWN ( I am sure you will get my drift).

Very nice guy from HR, former truck driver for the company and some A@#hole pilot guy from one of the joints that the newly forming flight division had hired to do their flying for them.

Anyway, pilot guy asked me what position I could handle. I said, I thought you would do it the normal way, FE/ FO, Capt. But I felt comfortable starting as a copilot.

He went balistic and said: do you think you could handle a DC8 upset at high altitude.

My answer was this: if you got into a jet upset at that altitude in a DC8, either something weird happened (extreme clear air turbulence for example) OR YOU WERE FLYING TOO HIGH FOR YOUR WEIGHT and shouldn't have been there in the first place.


The interview went downhill from there. BUT I am glad I didn't fly for them. Even though the money could have been great and I was getting in on the ground floor and could only go UP(S) from there. ;-)


Guys and Gals, don't fly so high...even DADELUS warned Icarus of flying too high!

I love hearing the following: "oh, let''s push the altitude limit so we can get OVER this thunderstorm"...famous last words I am sure!


[email protected]


"there are old pilots and bold pilots but no old bold pilots"

Elliot Moose
21st Jan 2006, 15:54
Guys and Gals, don't fly so high...even DADELUS warned Icarus of flying too high!

Er....I'm glad I'm not paying your fuel bills. You don't appear to have much more understanding of the subject than some others here. Read my previous posts. They were NOT at an unsafe altitude for the weight and ISA deviation. If they had climbed at a standard profile, they could have made 410 safely--somewhere well past their destination airport. The leg was too short for the altitude as opposed to the aircraft failing to climb as published! As I said, I HAVE taken a CRJ200 up to those altitudes on empty legs, and I have hand flown them up to somewhere around 390 no problems. Flying high is what you're supposed to do in jets. It is the best and most fuel efficient way to fly, but you must fly by the book.

if the book says it can go to FL410 then it should have gotten there safely with the patience of the crew

You don't need to be a test pilot to do it, just a patient one (as you have rightly stated)!

Placards and ridiculously low limitations only serve to hold the hands of pilots who are too lazy to learn their stuff.
As for your "shudder" at 3000', I have no idea what that one was unless it was maybe the spoilers getting popped at the same time. They are VERY effective, and have been known to startle pax due to the air burbling around them. I've spent a lot of time in the back as well as the pointy part of CRJ's (ALL models) and never experienced something like you describe.

barit1
21st Jan 2006, 16:29
Remember this one? (http://www.ntsb.gov/ntsb/brief.asp?ev_id=37981&key=0)
:eek:

jondc9
21st Jan 2006, 20:49
dear elliott moose:

the world of the internet sometimes does not convey things properly.

Let us both assume we wish safe flying for all.

as far as paying fuel bills, if that is your only concern then you may be misguided. also, in this very complex world of ATC routings, turbulence, wx, passenger comfort and the like I have noticed some interesting things.

One day I had to fly 5 legs in a DC9 unpressurized...10,000 and below. ON every leg I was below normal (altitude) fuel burn and ahead of schedule. WHY? ATC could give us direct at 10k and awful routing at normal altitudes.

Another day the turbulence was so bad at normal flight levels that I flew halfway from BWI to Florida at fl180. On schedule and over by only 300 pounds of fuel. Passengers enjoyed a comfortable flight.


If you think flying at high altitude is the only way to fly a jet, well that is a tiny bit closed minded. Of course if the only plane in the sky was yours, higher is usually better.

AS to the shudder, I hope that pilots of jets climbing out would not use spoilers...unless you mean roll augmentation spoilers. But that shudder was there, perhaps your experience has been a smoother one.


None of us will really know what happened to those poor guys. BUT, we as pilots must not jeopardize the safety of passengers, innocents on the ground and our crews by experimenting with the flight envelope. Safe and conservative is what airline pilots should be about.


Oh, and since you probably have the numbers and I don't. What buffet margin charts do you use 1.25 g's or 1.37 g's? just wondering.


safe flying

jon

Willie Everlearn
21st Jan 2006, 22:20
Elliot Moose points out a reality for this particular incident/accident.
This aircraft was at a weight acceptable for maintaining FL410 according to the BBD CL65 Cruise Perf Charts.
It's rumored, not fact, (yet) that the accident crew used V/S, and zoom climbs to "milk" their way to FL410.
As I've already said, you climb in IAS/Mach, not V/S, which for the CRJ is 290/.70
This ensures the advertised performance.
Sitting at FL410 and at M0.59, the accident crew must have thought the aircraft would simply accelerate to 0.74 'somehow' and found themselves instead, out of thrust, losing airspeed which resulted in a stall. Essentially, they got shaker and several pushes from the SPS.
Compounding the problem was their misuse of power during stall recovery which resulted in a core lock of one or both engines causing additional serious problems when they ran the in-flight relight QRH procedures.
It went downhill from there.
:confused: :eek::mad:

jondc9
21st Jan 2006, 23:16
dear willie:

I am glad to see someone use the term, "zoom climb". I've flown with many people who didn't know what this meant. YIKES.

Sadly, I think your scenario is very close to the truth, whatever that finally is.

Sadly too that this crew had not read about a spirit airways MD80 that did the same thing...but the crew recovered.

A zoom climb at too heavy a weight, engines would not produce enough power to accelerate at the higher altitude. Mistakes abound by crew...BUT, they went to firewall power and got an emergency descent of about 6000' recovering to a semblance of normal cruise.

I only knew about this incident because a valued aviation reporter freind contacted me on behalf of a passenger on the flight in question. He wanted to understand what the HECK happened.

It makes sense for modern pilots to learn from the past mistakes of others and have their ''air sense" become alert when they start down the same path.


Conservative flying is the name of the game even if it costs a bit more in fuel prices.

If someone can, will they post the CVR transcript?

To the gentleman(On the Straight and Level?) who speaks of how marketing markets planes. I think you are spot on. I appreciate your candor in this. I have flown some 120 different kinds of planes and of those only perhaps 3 performed as well as the book said it would.

To all reading this thread, take a deep breath and give your self a huge margin in routine operations. While your BEAN COUNTERS may care about an extra 50 gallons of jet fuel used, YOUR PASSENGERS don't give a damn. They want a routine flight.

And if you ferry empty, resist the temptation to fool around in the plane. It is hard, but make the ferry flight routine and boring too.

I'll stand by my previous post regarding dadelus's warning to icarus...and clarify that it is not just altitude, but the whole performance envelope that should be managed with a conservative approach.

Imagine how much better Chicago Midway's recent Southwest over-run would have been handled with a more conservative attitude about performance (tailwind landings.) Even the NTSB said it would take 5300' to stop...and if you look at the approach charts the glideslope would give you just over 4900 feet to stop. The FEDS were right not to count reverse at the dawn of the jet age.


jon

DownIn3Green
22nd Jan 2006, 04:53
Wow....over 120 different kinds of planes...no wonder JDC9 knows so much...:hmm: :hmm: :hmm:

Ignition Override
22nd Jan 2006, 07:18
The company which operated the CRJ, Pinnacle, has reportedly turned the CRJ Initial Tng. program into a bear, and the fact that many pilots have quite limited experience makes it much more difficult to get through. The FAA must have turned the place inside out. But sometimes training departments can overreact.

Numerous pilots were fired by the Chief Pilot. I'm acquainted with a guy whose son was fired during training. At least numerous male pilots were fired. The female pilots "allegedly" receive more extra help. This from the wife of an IP at Pinnacle. A different sort of problem involved an unfortunate guy who paid many thousands of dollars in the well-known Gulfstream program. Infamous? The guy, whose case might not be uncommon, flew as B-1900 FO in Florida but rarely flew an instrument approach (how often was he allowed to fly, even in VMC?). That sad tale was related to me while walking up a DFW jetway by a Pinnacle CRJ IP.

westhawk
22nd Jan 2006, 08:00
This thread seems to have drifted into a continuation of the original thread which was started shortly after the crash and has been dormant for some months now. Same arguments being made. For the benefit of those who may not be aware, a public hearing was held by the NTSB June 13-15, 2005. At that time, a rather large body of investigatory work product was placed in the public docket and made available to the public on the NTSB website. Here is the link:

http://www.ntsb.gov/events/2005/Pinnacle/exhibits/default.htm

Many of you have examined the data made available there and it is apparent in the more informed posts. For those who have not read it, here is your chance to beef up on the facts as they were known back in June.

But back to subject of this thread. If a trial were held today, with pilots as jurors and the evidence was limited to the contents of the factual reports available now, I think the plaintiffs in this case would be awarded nothing more than human sympathy for their loss.

Fortunately for the legal profession, and to the detriment of society at large, this will never happen. Instead, highly skilled spin-doctors will be allowed to brow-beat lay jurors into a state of sympathetic numbness. If not effectively countered by a cogently presented factual analysis of the causal factors of the accident, then a complete trashing of the character and professionalism of the deceased pilots is the only other alternative. An ugly, uphill battle for the defense. I do not envy them in their task. No, the only good that can come from any of it is that lessons be learned by those who participate in the air transportation industry. Management, trainers and ordinary line pilots can all benefit from examining the root causes of this and any number of other "human factors" related tragedies.

Could the design of the aircraft or it's systems have contributed to the inability of the crew to recover from their self-induced emergency? Perhaps to some degree any airplane or system could be more Murphy-proof. But then, if history is any indication, that does tend to ensure the breeding of newer, better, ever more devious and pernicious Murphys! (apologies to anyone who happens to carry the Murphy name.) The point is that all aircraft must be operated with care and within a design flight envelope. It is up to pilots to do this. They didn't. Why not? I think that is the important question to be addressed. But the civil liability case is concerned with apportioning blame and assigning dollar amounts to the damages incurred by the plaintiffs. The only facts that matter are the ones the Jury chooses to give weight to in their deliberations. They may even award punitive damages if certain legal conditions exist. There is no way to further punish the individuals who had the most opportunity to prevent this accident. They paid the ultimate price for any transgressions committed during their joyride.

I am constantly reminded of the following statement: "Flying, while not inherently dangerous, is terribly unforgiving of any incapacity, carelessness or neglect." This was (to the best of my recollection) the caption inscribed below a picture I once saw of a '20s era biplane crashed and stuck in a lone tree in a fog shrouded field. Just one lone lapse in judgement is all it takes.

Best regards,

Westhawk

barit1
22nd Jan 2006, 15:49
Perhaps to some degree any airplane or system could be more Murphy-proof. But then, if history is any indication, that does tend to ensure the breeding of newer, better, ever more devious and pernicious Murphys! (apologies to anyone who happens to carry the Murphy name.)

westhawk, you have stolen the line that I in turn stole from a respected mentor at least 30 years ago. It is impossible to build the perfect machine - every design is the result of conscious or subconscious compromises. To get a little bit more of this, you give up a liitle bit of that.

westhawk
22nd Jan 2006, 20:39
Barit1:

westhawk, you have stolen the line that I in turn stole from a respected mentor at least 30 years ago.

I wish I could remember where I first heard it so I could give proper attribution. And I prefer the term "borrowed"!

It is impossible to build the perfect machine - every design is the result of conscious or subconscious compromises. To get a little bit more of this, you give up a liitle bit of that.

Right you are. I find myself making a variation of this argument whenever I hear someone bashing a particular model of aircraft because of it's perceived shortcomings in range, speed or load carrying capabilities and feel the need to speak up. "In what ways would you have designed it differently?" I might ask. The response invariably describes another current model that meets with their specifications but is more expensive or has some other perceived shortcoming.

If this logic is applied to the design of the CRJ, one can see that this adaptation of the Challenger bizjet design does several things very well with relatively low cost per seat mile being it's most easily recognizable attribute. If making a rapid climb to FL410 was a design goal, they would have selected RR Tays or some engine other than the highly efficient airframe/engine matchup achieved with the CF-34. Even so, it can make 410 if it is flown correctly within it's performance limitations. Light weight, cool air and the stipulated climb profile will improve climb performance. You can't just point the nose at the sky and expect the airplane to comply! Even the F-15 will quit on you if you try to exceed it's design capabilities. It is a shame if the mishandling of an airplane by two pilots out of thousands is allowed to shape the perception of this airplane's design success. And more the shame if Bombardier are punished for the actions of said pilots. As previously stated, their punishment was total. On the other hand, Pinnacle has been and will continue to be the subject of intense scrutiny. I hope some good can come from it.

Best regards,

Westhawk

Ryan_not_fair
23rd Jan 2006, 00:29
Weathawk et al - bollo% ye are talking out of what you sit on

Two guys who were licenced by the authorities, got into a plane which, performance wise, couldnt do anything near what it said on its tin - safely. In fact, it beggars belief that this ac was certified to operate at the flight levels that these two cowboys took it to without special training which nither officer had or were offered.

Realising this, there was a class A CYA (cover your ass) orchestrated by the authorties, with unprecendented "leakes" of precious RT from the doomed flight aimed only at discrediting the actions of the jocks and depicting them as juevineil joy riders. Tell me the last accidient that the public had black box info before the actual investigating team - I smelled a rat from day one and am surprised others havent too. You are being asked to focus on the irresponsibility of the crew (we are just having some fun) to detract from the fact that this ac just wasnt able for its certified FL. I have little respect for the actions of either of the men in this case but they took a perfectly servicable ac to a FL that it should have been able for but was ill equiped to deal with the very special aerodynamic circumstances that are at work there.

Test pilots testified at the time that this model had no place being above 35000 ft without the pilots having special training and as such, was a accidient waiting to happen if it did. Well we have had the accidient so could we now please bring the desk jockies that mis represented its capabilities brought to book and in particular the desk jockies who blindly accepted these figures, or more specifically, ignored the obvious deficiencies of the craft.

May they rest in peace.

jondc9
23rd Jan 2006, 00:43
there really seem to be two schools of thought...defenders of the plane and defenders of the crew.

I've been in flying 30 years. I had never heard of ''core lock'' before this crash.

also, I have used the phrase, "having a little fun" on the RT (that is radio telephone to you americans! (of which I am one))

during the time I was having a little fun, I wasn't exploring the flight envelope, I was flying the passengers over Niagra Falls enroute to Toronto.

I know the dc9 I used to fly had a dual engine flameout checklist and we even did glide landings ( both engines failed in the sim) to DCA (washington national airport)

jon

Hand Solo
23rd Jan 2006, 01:14
Two guys who were licenced by the authorities, got into a plane which, performance wise, couldnt do anything near what it said on its tin - safely

The 747-400 is certified to fly at 45100 feet, yet I've never seen one that high nor flown one on which the FMC said it could achieve it. Does that mean the 744 is an unsafe aircraft? Come to think of it the A321 is certified up to about 39800 feet but with any sort of load it'll struggle to get above FL350. Is that aircraft unsafe too? There is a world of difference between what an aircraft is advertised as being able to do in extremis and what is feasible in reality and it is the crews responsibility to operate within the realms of the feasibly, not the theoretical.

Ryan_not_fair
23rd Jan 2006, 01:16
Good observation j9. There are indeed two schools and I am clearly a defender of the crew. They got into an coffin which the defenders of the aircraft new it couldnt do what they said it could. Jesus, this is corporate manipulation gone mad. If you need special training to control an ac at fl410 then thats one thing. Why wasnt there an SOP preventing crew from going to or accepting a clearance to fl410 if they werent trained. The atc controller on the night was so surprised to have this a/c type requesting 410 that he remarked on it - no one had ever gone there before on his watch and he was surprised by it. I'm not defending the crew who were clearly pushing the envelope of there own capability but I am sure that they had blind confidence in the aircraft. I hold a licence to fly an a/c from one airport to another and approach the destination at the published minimums, but it dosent mean that I exercise that previlage at every opportunity. Infact, more often than not I decline it but when I opt to accept an approach into an airport which is operating at mins, I do so in the knowledge that a strip of asphelt will await me if I trust the instruments and fly the approach. There is no difference to this and expecting the a/c to behave as I was told it would during my type rating - these guys were lied to cause it didnt. . These guys were told that the a/c could do what they were asking of it and it clearly couldnt.

Sue the bastards for every penny

Ryan_not_fair
23rd Jan 2006, 01:24
Hands Solo

Not even sure why i'm answering your questionas


ABSO bloody UTELY

Are you seriously telling me that an a/c that is certified to do xy or z dosent really have to do it!!!!

Hand Solo
23rd Jan 2006, 01:32
Damn right. Its called PHYSICS. I presume you don't have a problem with the idea that a max certificated take off weight is often higher than the take off performance limited take off weight? So why do you have problem with the idea that a max certificated ceiling is not achievable on every flight? It's simple common sense and that common sense has been keeping people alive since Pontius was a pilot.

barit1
23rd Jan 2006, 01:34
Ryan_not_fair - it's time you re-read post #12 (by the esteemed Elliot Moose) in this thread. There is a world of difference between an AFM limit pressure altitude of 41000 (basically a pressure vessel structural limit), and the performance to get you there at a high SAT at 500 fpm. The crew had PLENTY of indicators including stick pusher trying to save their skins; If you don't understand THAT, you're in the wrong business.

Ryan_not_fair
23rd Jan 2006, 01:38
Not sure what take off weight has to do with anything?? There is a service celing and an absolute celing and the fact that this model handles like a sainsbury shopping trolly on one wheel at anything near either. In fact I probably do an injustice to sainsbury shopping trollies.

Ryan_not_fair
23rd Jan 2006, 01:48
Bart1 - Quote from your idol (the esteemed Elliot Moose)

"To get there, you have to be light, and on a loooonnnnnggg leg"

How lighter do you have to be on a repo flight with only two pax on board - the pilot and co pilot. They were perfectly placed to test this baby to its published spec's but it couldnt even do it under these circumstances.

ehwatezedoing
23rd Jan 2006, 02:45
Perfectly placed but wrong move.

It's rumored, not fact, (yet) that the accident crew used V/S, and zoom climbs to "milk" their way to FL410.
As I've already said, you climb in IAS/Mach, not V/S, which for the CRJ is 290/.70

Hand Solo
23rd Jan 2006, 05:48
Ryan_Not_Fair - perhaps you would share with us your personal experience of flying. From your responses on this thread it would seem to be limited, at most, to possibly flying light twin jets on short sectors. You seem to display a complete lack of understanding of how aircraft operate at the limits of their performance envelopes.

Not sure what take off weight has to do with anything?? There is a service celing and an absolute celing and the fact that this model handles like a sainsbury shopping trolly on one wheel at anything near either.

Weight has lots to do with it. It provides a useful illustration of how actual performance can be below the maximum certified performance and it's also a factor in where the 'coffin corner' is located in the flight envelope. I don't know what your factual basis is for claiming that the aircraft handles like "a sainsbury shopping trolly on one wheel" at its service ceiling but most aircraft require kid gloves when at the limits of their operation. You seem to imply that because the aircraft was certified to fly at FL410 it should be able to climb with a V/S of 500fpm to that level at all times. Very, very wrong.

BEagle
23rd Jan 2006, 07:59
Ryan_not-fair, I cannot believe that any commercially-trained pilot can be quite so ignorant of the generic characteristics of high level jet aircraft operation as you appear to be.

Limits exist for a reason, company SOPs exist to keep aircraft well clear of any absolute limits.

The 2 Pinnacle pilots operated the aircraft in such a cavalier manner that they ultimately killed themselves. Neither Bombardier no Pinnacle nor anyone else's fault - the 2 pilots were solely to blame.

Attempting to sue Bombardier is an utter nonsense which shames even sleazy, low-life ambulance chasing lawyers.

westhawk
23rd Jan 2006, 10:41
Ryan not fair:

You seem to hold a very strong set of opinions. You lead off by making remarks intended to insult. You continue by presenting this conspiracy theory. Whatever your issue is, it is obvious by your statements that you have not done the work required to have a very informed opinion. Just an emotionally reactive one. And I hope that you intend to obtain and make use of an English language spell checker.

Those points aside, if you wish to put forth the opinion that this aircraft was certified for an altitude which it is incapable of attaining, and that the crew were somehow innocent victims of a corrupt corporate conspiracy, then why not start by posting the statements of these test pilots who claim it cannot be operated above FL350 safely? Let's examine exactly what was or was not said by these individuals.

Just as a point of interest, it is quite common for jet aircraft to have a certified ceiling well above that which will typically be flown in normal operations. You see, for each aircraft weight, pressure altitude and temperature combination, the aircraft will be capable of reaching only a given altitude while maintaining a safe speed. Furthermore, a safe speed must be maintained at all times during the climb. Whether or not on autopilot, no matter what vertical mode is selected, the speed must be closely monitored at all times. It is no more difficult or complex work than maintaining the speed limit while driving. Any pilot should be able to do it. You need only give your attention to the task at hand. If you get too slow, the thrust produced by the engines may be insufficient to overcome the increased induced drag incurred by flying at an excessive angle of attack. Any qualified jet pilot knows from study and experience that the higher you are, the more critical it becomes. The slower the climb speed used, the lower the altitude at which the airplane will be able to accelerate and recover to a normal airspeed. The FDR traces show that this is precisely what occurred. The aircraft reached FL410 at a speed and AOA it could not recover from except by reducing the pitch attitude and descending until a safe airspeed and AOA were achieved. This was not done. Instead, the altitude was held and the aircraft continued to slow until it stalled as the result of reaching critical AOA. Even then, the nose was held up. At this excessive AOA, one engine flamed out, while the other one exceeded it's maximum ITT limit by quite a bit before flaming out. (200 deg. or so, IIRC) Quite often, jet engines will not run again following such a severe overtemp. Everything that happened following this was an ultimately unsuccessful attempt to recover from a serious self-induced emergency situation. The issue of "core-lock" may or may not turn out to be a red hering since in all GE tests, the engines turned over when starter torque was applied even if they did not windmill. They really did come close to making the runway. 1 more minute or a nearer airport selection might have done it.

Every jet aircraft has one or more climb profiles published in the AFM which have been determined to provide maximum climb performance for the given conditions. If the specified speed is maintained or exceeded, the worst thing that can happen upon reaching the WAT limit is that you will no longer be climbing. But you will be at a safe airspeed and can simply admit to ATC that you need to settle for a lower altitude than the one you were cleared to. You must call them anyway if you can no longer hold a 500 fpm rate. If you allow the speed to decay, you may find a descent will be required to regain a safe speed. This stuff is all jet flying 101, (pretty basic knowledge) not rocket science. There is no "very special aerodynamic circumstances that are at work there." Just ordinary aerodynamics that are easily understood by anyone who flies and possesses just quite ordinary powers of observation. How this basic precept of pilot knowlege fell between the cracks in this instance is an open question. Perhaps that is the good which may come from this tragedy. An increased emphasis on airplane performance planning as a part of pilot training may result from attention paid to this accident. Possessing enough common air sense to know when to pay attention might have prevented this accident sequence from beginning. Jabbering on about this or that while the airplane is .10 mach too slow is indicative of a breakdown in basic airmanship and/or a lack of understanding of basic flight principles.

I appreciate that there are people who would defend the pilots no matter what the circumstances. on the one hand, this is laudable. On the other, facts are facts and they speak more clearly than sentiment when it comes to accidents. It's not a case of defending the airplane or the pilots. It's a case of looking at what happened and reaching conclusions objectively, according to the evidence before you. No axe to grind here. What happened is not pleasant. Nor is it something that will happen again with any regularity if proper airplane handling is practiced. Sorry to say it, but in this case, it was not. Let's just learn from it and move on.

The best thing for you to do, Ryan not fair, would be to simply back down and be better prepared to comment intelligently if you wish to dispute someone else's opinions on this forum. Normally, I would hesitate to, or at least apologize for flaming you, but your combative attitude and lack of familiarity with the facts merit a couple of virtual whacks. Straighten up and fly right! You can follow the link I provided in an earlier post to see all the evidence NTSB have posted to the public docket. Happy reading!

Best regards,

Westhawk

chuks
23rd Jan 2006, 12:22
I tried to put my motorcycle in the garage the other day and it tried to kill me. There is nothing in the handbook (and I have checked) that says not to try this at 30 miles per hour. Now I have a big hole in the back of the garage and a lot of trouble with the wife about her rose bushes in the back yard, not to mention cuts, abrasions, contusions and multiple fractures ...

Holding to Ryan not fair's logic someone (not me) should have to pay for this flaming example of gross corporate negligence! Or what?

Get real, man! Any machine will kill you if you don't use your head. Ever try to make toast while having a shower? See what happens and let us know how you got on with that.

Well, unless you wanted to build something like an Ercoupe, say, but that's so simple to operate that it's as close to totally boring as makes no difference. And even Ercoupes crash when mishandled.

Willie Everlearn
23rd Jan 2006, 12:25
On_the_straight_and_level
Very good post.
I'd just like to point out, if I may, that whatever your company procedures ARE or WERE, the Climb/Cruise Capability Chart for the 200, 700 and 900 series Canadair Regional Jet is titled 500' CLIMB/CRUISE CAPABILITY.
During your initial training (if it were completed at the Factory Training Centre in Montreal) you should have been informed that the chart is predicated on a 500 fpm climb performance at minimum. Therefore, should the ROC drop below this value SOMETHING'S WRONG, check it out. (or words to that effect)
:confused: So, I shouldn't think there's much of a need for searching to find an answer to that mystery, especially as it's published in the PRMs, is there? :confused:
In my estimation, looking at the pilot population I've had the pleasure to train over the past few years, the nationalities, education levels, experience, comprehension levels are so wide and varied it's often difficult as a TRI to know what the student has taken away from the 'canned' briefings delivered during flight training. The briefings are canned to ensure through QA process that factory trained pilots get the goods on a consistent basis. (Practically all Training Centres and Airlines do the same) Pinnacle was not a factory trained customer (which shouldn't matter) so it's difficult to know what they recieved with regard to climb, and step climbs in their briefings. :sad:
If this crew had flown in speed mode IAS 290/.70 to FL410, as they were likely trained to do, they would have safely reached FL410 and even if they weren't able to accelerate to .74, they could have safely maintained .70.
ACCORDING TO THE BOOK.
:ok:

CarbHeatIn
17th Feb 2006, 17:19
http://www.ntsb.gov/Events/2005/Pinnacle/exhibits/CVR_Factual.pdf

ExSimGuy
17th Feb 2006, 21:26
Not sure what to make of this. Have searched and found not too much more. "Impressions" are that the guys were "smoking something illegal", but that is just an impression. Maybe even forgot to fuel-up as well!?

Is there a point being made here? If so, what is it?

Stu

Knackered Nigel
17th Feb 2006, 21:53
Sounds shocking to me. Scary stuff.

RMC
17th Feb 2006, 22:08
ESJ They had pleanty of fuel but took the aircraft above its max certified altitude....double engine flame out.

bagpuss lives
17th Feb 2006, 22:17
Shocking stuff.

Ballymoss
17th Feb 2006, 22:20
This link was posted the other day, read it, was shocked but chose not to reply. Now it's up here again, I've reread and am equally shocked.

The tools of ones trade should be handled with care and not 'played with'.
Fact they came within a short distance of a runway doesn't really matter now..............does it?:(

egbt
17th Feb 2006, 22:53
Have searched and found not too much more
The following may be of interest but will take some time to read! I think if they had been "smoking something illegal" it would be in the human factors section.
http://www.ntsb.gov/events/2005/Pinnacle/exhibits/default.htm

Non Normal
18th Feb 2006, 03:11
It's stated on Page 7 of 322805 (2nd one from the bottom in egbt's link) that tissue specimens from the captain and first officer tested negative for ethanol and a wide range of drugs, including major drugs of abuse.

That CVR transcript is pretty shocking... how weird.

Kenny
18th Feb 2006, 03:23
ESJ They had pleanty of fuel but took the aircraft above its max certified altitude....double engine flame out.

They took it up to FL410, which is the CRJ200's max certified ceiling. They just did it it in a very stupid way.

Loose rivets
18th Feb 2006, 04:23
Darwin 1 Beavis and Buthead 0


I may be sounding flippant, but the thought of a pair of Cretans like this, driving a decent bit of kit, makes my blood boil.

arcniz
18th Feb 2006, 04:36
A lot of thoughts come to mind, but the most telling one is that they did not prioritise very well, once things went bad on them, with both engines out for reasons unclear, shortly followed by a failure to restart while relatively warm.

Had they decided right about then that "rule one is: we're going to aim to be around to see the sunrise", they would have confessed to the double engine-out, obtained early vectors to the nearest suitable airport, found the flashlights, and proceeded with a scary but fairly reliable dead-stick descent to an approach with very high probability of success. Engine re-starts and other such might be reasonable on the way down, but only as goal number two.

That way it might likely have worked out ok. T'other way it surely didn't. With only a couple chances left, surely then is time to prioritise.

cwatters
18th Feb 2006, 15:27
Not sure what to make of this. Have searched and found not too much more. "Impressions" are that the guys were "smoking something illegal", but that is just an impression. Maybe even forgot to fuel-up as well!?

Is there a point being made here? If so, what is it?

Stu

There is lots more available at:

http://www.ntsb.gov/Events/2005/Pinnacle/exhibits

For example..

http://www.ntsb.gov/Events/2005/Pinnacle/exhibits/322805.pdf

Says..

"Tissue specimens from the captain and first officer tested negative for ethanol and a wide range of drugs, including major drugs of abuse."

Flight Safety
18th Feb 2006, 16:34
I agree with arcniz, plan and start executing your engine out landing first, then try the engine restarts.

I noticed a couple of other things in the NTSB exhibits. In exhibit 322908, there's discussion of the "engine rollback" problem with high altitude and high AOA with this airframe. When the problem is more severe, the engines don't recover. The stick pusher parameters had to be modified during certification to help compensate for this problem. The testing was done at FL390, but not at FL410. It appears that the pilots performed a steep climb to FL410 at speeds that may have been too slow to prevent the power rollback problem.

In exhibit 324090, GE discusses the "core lock" problem with the CF34, that may have prevented the air start of the engines. Apparently at an HPT seal after shutdown from high power, the rotating parts cool at a different rate from the stator parts, causing the ISS seal (Inter Stage Seal) to stick (a "stiction" as the document refers to it), which windmilling alone cannot overcome, until the rotating and static parts reach a more equal temperature. Apparently while the "stiction" event is in progress, ATS (Air Turbine Start) power can overcome the friction, but windmilling cannot. GE recommends a "grind in" procedure (you're kidding right??) to create the necessary clearances for the ISS seal to prevent the "stiction".

It appears to me that these 2 airframe issues may have stacked the odds against the pilots in this accident.

jondc9
18th Feb 2006, 17:22
I could find nothing indicating the use of alcohol or illegal drugs of any kind. Please be specific if you have something quote it!


Now, what I hear is that a crew took an airplane up to the edge of its "envelope". I hear joking around ( believe me it happens in cockpits) ... even a joke about beer, but that is all it is a joke.

now, if one of the pilots left the flight deck at fl410 to get pepsi and the other didn't put on the oxygen mask that is a big problem in my book.

I also hear a responsible pilot trying to avoid crashing into a house or houses.

expletives are part of everyday life these days. so is the word "dude". In my 12000 some odd flying hours, it is sometimes easier to call someone "dude", pardner, hey clem or whatever. It is easy to forget the name of someone you are flying with if you haven't flown with them before.

no where did the word "mayday" come up in the CVR. I checked with my "FIND FUNCTION". Believe me, "MAYDAY" might have gotten a little more attention from ATC...they got cleared direct to JEF , and they spent some time trying to tune up JEF...ATC should have given them a heading (unless I missed this, please check and inform me), a RADAR VECTOR and a few seconds might have been saved.

I will say that the CAM 2 (f/o) seemed more concerned about stalling/coffin corner etc than the captain.

One thing to really understand too is that at FL410 the cabin altitude may have been at the max for this plane. Is it possible that a little bit of hypoxia had happened. For years, 8000 feet has been the magic number....but I know that at 8000' cabin altitude I feel it. I know that boeing is advertising at max cabin altitude of 6000' for comfort in its new 787 dreamliner.

Hypoxia is even more telling at night on the human mind...night vision suffers and so forth. perhaps this is why the less than swift reaction to the "ball" being out of center.

all dudes aside, once they started on the checklist the professionalism seemed to return a bit ...

this core lock business sounds something like a "hung start" problem on the ground in the old garrett turboprop. things get a little warped due to different coolings.

sorry, whatever you think the problem is with the crew ( and they are not perfect...neither was atc) that plane should not be certifed so high and there better be a fix for the engine relight...even allowing for in - flight use of ground starter motors either electric or pneumatic whichever this thing has.

the envelope better be made smaller on this plane to keep it safe.


jon

ExSimGuy
18th Feb 2006, 18:36
Thanks, Cwatters , JonDC9 et al.

It did come over a bit that the atmosphere on the flight deck was a little "hilarious" before the problem occurred (and even a little after it started)

And I take the point about hypoxia (I did wonder if they were perhaps a little late getting on the O2)

Yes, I did notice that - once the severity of the problem was evident, the guys on the ground did seem to take a while to give frequencies, vectors etc.

Hope I did not sound too "accusing", and thanks to all for the clarification on the "med tests". That's just the way it came over, and I had tried (Google, All-the-web) to find more info but could only find the same report, or newspaper reports.

The guys were probably "clowning a bit to "whack it to the edge (literally) of the envelope", but sorry they didn't get it down and only suffer a "smacked wrist" from the Boss:(

Stu

lomapaseo
18th Feb 2006, 18:59
I agree with arcniz, plan and start executing your engine out landing first, then try the engine restarts.
...



Your mileage may vary:} but it is absolutley imperative that you attain the inflight restart envelop within spec if you want to have a more than lucky chance at restarting the buggers.

In some restart envelopes this means giving up all engine out glide distance in order to stay in the restart envelop the longest.

It's a basic pilot decision time in a high pucker factor scenario. You have to pay the piper to hear the music
.

In my own restricted experience, once I'm out of the restart envelop and no chance of attaining it (too slow, too badly a mess in the engines) then I would seriously configure the aircraft for the best glide condition to achieve the softest landing. Half-way neasures either way don't sound to me like they are wise.

Flight Safety
18th Feb 2006, 19:21
In my own restricted experience, once I'm out of the restart envelop and no chance of attaining it (too slow, too badly a mess in the engines) then I would seriously configure the aircraft for the best glide condition to achieve the softest landing. Half-way neasures either way don't sound to me like they are wise.

I couldn't agree more, but the glide to land is your only backup plan.

I wonder what the stats are for successful restarts after 2 (or both) jet engines shutdown in flight. Success would depend on the cause of the shutdown of course. Then you have a possible extra factor such as the GE34 "core lock" problem which the NTSB is looking into for this particular accident.

If someone feels that an engine restart is better than an engine out landing, I would agree absolutely. But if you can't them restarted, than a glide landing is your only other option, so I think you said it correctly.

Half-way measures either way don't sound to me like they are wise.

Flight Safety
18th Feb 2006, 19:41
There's another recovery factor that happens to be present in this particular accident that I've been wanting to discuss.

In this case, the cabin pressure started to decay after the engines shutdown, as would be the case in many types. So how long can you stay at altitude in a glide before you have to get down lower to restore cabin pressure and O2? In this case, APU start at 30,000 could have provided a better engine restart option. Could it have provided cabin pressure as well on this type?

Ah, the conundrum of high altitude engine shutdown. Avoid hypoxia, preserve your glide to a good landing spot, and preserve your engine restart options. All at the same time. :uhoh:

jondc9
18th Feb 2006, 19:58
I haven't flown the CRJ series of aircraft. does anyone know if the engines are started on the ground with apu air (pneumatic starts) or by electric starter motor (that might be switched to perform function of generator after start)?

I love the dc9, but when at high altitude and descending at idle thrust, some of the older planes had their cabin altitude climb a bit... the engine out at high altitude scenario and getting hypoxia is not to be laughed at...sadly it is not trained for enough.

I think we as pilots depend too much on the 10thousand foot altitude warning horn, and with the case of the cypriot737, were fooled into thinking something was wrong with the gear warning horn!

awhile ago, there was a fine article about people traveling to florida on a CAL flight. one of the older folks died and lack of oxygen was to blame. Dippy pilot was quoted as saying something like, don't blame me if they are too old to fly.

many older people fly to florida...(duh)...after I read this article I started flying a bit lower to hold a 6k cabin instead of an 8k cabin. while I am not a statistician, more people came up to me telling me how much they enjoyed the flight.

Those 8 thousand foot numbers were derived during WW2 using healthy young men as subjects...not older people.


so, if you lose an engine or two, get on oxygen right away!


GEE

or should I say, G-E ?

ps. if you have a loss of any engine or all engines...trim for best glide and head towards your pre-selected field for landing...once you have the option of gliding to some kind of survivable landing, you might try the restart option including accelerating to obtain windmill speed.


of course if you are way out over the ocean, might have to try inflight relight first! ;-)

jon

Ballymoss
18th Feb 2006, 21:50
no where did the word "mayday" come up in the CVR. I checked with my "FIND FUNCTION". Believe me, "MAYDAY" might have gotten a little more attention from ATC...they got cleared direct to JEF , and they spent some time trying to tune up JEF...ATC should have given them a heading (unless I missed this, please check and inform me), a RADAR VECTOR and a few seconds might have been saved.

You're right, there was no Mayday in all of the 12 minutes and 29 seconds between Capt (seemingly) confirming double engine failure and asking F/O to advise ATC. I don't doubt it was recognised and acted upon however, the assistance you suggest they needed may have been available had their status been made clear......................Of course, I could be missing something here:(

Clandestino
18th Feb 2006, 22:38
So Darwin awards finalists are back with us again. Well...

both engines out for reasons unclear

Let me put it this way: CRJ is airplane. Airplanes are devices used to transport goods and people through air by method we'll call flying. To fly we need two forces: lift and thrust. Lift is provided when the device we'll call wing moves through the air. To propel wing we use thrust from engines. CRJ has it wings attached to bottom of the mid-fuselage and two turbofan engines attached to the rear of the a/c with T-tail above 'em. Now this configuration is susceptible to disturbance of air inflow to the engines if operated at high angle of attack. Not enough air to the engines means too much fuel (if fuel supply isn't immediately reduced) and internal engine temperature rising above the design limit temperature. Now this may lead to melting and welding of some engine components and if it happens engine can no longer produce thrust and it's not a good thing. No thrust soon turns into not enough lift and gravity takes over.

Before someone gets idea that T-tailed rear-engined jetplanes are dangerous by design, they're not! One just needs to keep his AoA low, as it's proved every day by thousands of CRJs, ERJs, DC9s, B727s, Tu134s, Tu154s, Gulfstreams, etc still flying happily around.

So how long can you stay at altitude in a glide?

Mind boggles on this one. If you're flying hi-perf sailplane in mountain vawe, as long as your oxy bottle lasts but if you're in transport category airplane, not even a split-second! Even if you go for your best glide speed you'll be plungin' earthwards with some rarely seen RoD - you'll get your 10:1 glide ratio but at quite high TAS. And if you go for windmilling restart of turbo-fan engine, you might need to pitch down in vicinity of 15° to get enough speed to windmill core shaft. This is a very scarry view, even in a sim.

About core lock: it happens on some turbofan engines in case of inflight flameout. Now the HP casing is cooled by stream of cold air going through bypass duct so it cools and shrinks more rapidly than core. Soon it contacts HP rotors and locks it until core gets cold enough and clearance between rotor and it's casing is restored. Was it relevant here: very small chance! Those GE's didn't just flameout, they failed after being severly overtemperatured, even partially melted!

failure to restart while relatively warm

I nominate expression "relatively warm" for "Understatement of the year award".


It's a shame such a beautiful plane was lost for no good reason. And too, too, too bad that pilots' families lost their loved ones. So next time when you ferry the bird or go up solo and have that itch to try something new, supress it. Thinking about the ones who will be hit hardest by your flight going awry might help.

barit1
20th Feb 2006, 13:30
To reiterate:

The engines DID NOT quit as a result of climbing to FL410.

The engines quit because of sloppy handling in the climb - trading airspeed for ROC, getting behind the power curve, disregarding stick shaker, manually overpowering the stick pusher, stalling the airplane - ultimately guaranteeing the engines were no longer receiving the clean inlet airflow they require to keep running at that altitude.

Then, through mishandling the relight process, they destroyed whatever chance they had to fly away from the earlier mistakes.

And they did it all at night, and never called Mayday. I feel for their families, and even a bit for the insurance company stockholders, but these guys didn't do their homework.

jondc9
20th Feb 2006, 15:18
hi barit 1 and all.

I think this is one of the most important threads going.

Again, I haven't flown the CRJ. I have flown T tail airplanes or planes with tail mounted engines. They are fine designs and I would prefer this type of plane over the 737 configuration...indeed, when the 737 was first proposed it was a T tail like the BAC 111, trident, dc9 etc. But some smart guy thought boeings should look a bit different. The 737 ended up with a huge vertical fin and rudder which was required for the engine out scenario with engines on wings. by the way, the 737 has lost both engines and glided to a safe landing ( 737-300 entered heavy rain, lost both glided to landing on levey in the american southwest somewhere...a foreign carrier too)

BUT I DIGRESS.


On one of the planes I flew, when the stall warning activated, the ignition would automatically come on to protect the engines from flame out. Does anyone know if the CRJ has this protection?


And, since we ( collectively that is) have proven that the CRJ can lose power in both engines at high angle of attack, during high altitude stall or upset, have the engines, inlets, or ignition systems been red-designed to protect against this happening again?


interestingly enough, all of my training in transport jets calls for battling the stall with firewall power and trying to maintain altitude (it is not my view in all cases of course). Could the training have been part of the problem. I will say that this stall recovery technique is mainly for low altitude and also for windshear. In the manual for another jet it says that this method MAY NOT WORK at high altitude and to trade altitude to recover.


there was quite a bit of talk about the AOA display or whatever it was in the cockpit...many a slip twixt the cup and lip... if the plane aint' flying right, start to unload it, push forward and get it flying even if in a high rate of descent. All pilots should read "stick and rudder" and memorize what the brilliant author says about stalls and how to get out of trouble.



jon

blabbering on

captjns
20th Feb 2006, 15:54
In Chuck Yeager's book he mentioned how many hot shot test pilots ended up in a great smoking hole because they would not read the manual before flight. In one funny bit he describes how a buddy parked his shiny new jet in the wall of the hanger. Seems to still be happening.

The friend in the book ws his friend was Scott Crossfield, who went on to fly the X-15. But any way Scott Crossfield was taxiing to parking after one of his flights, and shut down the engine and wanted to coast to a stop. When the engine wound down so did his hyrdraulics... ergo no brakes and bang, into the hangar. Anyway in Crossfield's wry sense of humor he stated to the awaiting reporters "Yeager may have been the first to break the sound barrier, but I was the first to break the hangar doors" Both great aviators, gentlement, colleagues and friends. Most important, they respected their machines.

barit1
20th Feb 2006, 18:33
... by the way, the 737 has lost both engines and glided to a safe landing ( 737-300 entered heavy rain, lost both glided to landing on levey in the american southwest somewhere...a foreign carrier too)...

NTSB report summary - TACA (http://www.ntsb.gov/ntsb/brief.asp?ev_id=20001213X25693&key=1) deadstick on the New Orleans levee.

These guys had their act together! Didn't ding anything - aircraft was ferried out in a few days.

Clandestino
20th Feb 2006, 22:15
And, since we ( collectively that is) have proven that the CRJ can lose power in both engines at high angle of attack, during high altitude stall or upset, have the engines, inlets, or ignition systems been red-designed to protect against this happening again?

Ignition sistems are irellevant if you don't have enough air to feed the engines. If you want to see how do the inlets designed for high AoA at high altitude look like, take a look at F-15, F-14, Su-27 or MiG-29. Too bad none of them can be converted into 45 seat regional jet. And no shape of intakes would help in this case, as they were blanketed by the wing anyway.
CRJ is adequatly protected from stalling at any altitude by stick-shaker and stick-pusher. They worked as designed but it seems they were overriden manually:sad:
It's easy to blame lack of hi-alt upset recovery trainning for the mess these guys got themselves into, but they could avoid it by not flying on the backside of the power curve and that's something I was taught while flying C-150. If you get into plane where you have to worry about mach no, it doesn't mean you can take a break from ol' power required vs power available.

jondc9
21st Feb 2006, 00:22
I still would like to know if the crj has automatic ignition protection along with stall warning.

as to air intakes and being blanked by the wing, does that mean the t tail was blanked by the wing too?

unless you personally have knowledge of flew the CRJ at FL410 with exact weights, speeds, aoa and the rest, specualtion on the capability of the air intake is a bit odd. and bringing up a slew of fighter planes means nothing.

yes the engines flamed out but all I WANT TO know is : does it have auto ignition or not?

Willie Everlearn
21st Feb 2006, 00:46
jondc9

Continuous Ignition is automatic in the CRJ (as you'd expect) and activates prior to the stall.
Well in advance of the stall.

Willie

jondc9
21st Feb 2006, 01:01
willie

thanks!

as I mentioned in an earlier post, too many pilots are being trained to hold altitude in stall recovery thinking engines will increase a/s and lower aoa...but as I mentioned it doesn't work at high altitudes.

still, no matter what really happened and why, every pilot today now knows that the GE engines on the CRJ need to be respected and given a safer envelope.

I do recall that the Saab 340 has GE engines that had certain icing problems and they were fixed with some sort of ignition change. (correct me if I am wrong, please)


i also recall that the TACA dual flameout triggered a change in the CFM56 engines (spinner?) and for the longest time you were not supposed to fly the CFM56 737's in heavy rain or precip.

Imagine being able to fly a PA28 in heavy rain and not a big jet!

Let's not be too harsh to our fallen comrades in the CRJ. They taught us all something, just like the air florida pilots did, and the TWA pilots in '74 near Dulles and so many of the fallen birdmen.

by knowing how people get into trouble, one has a map of how to avoid it. as soon as you see yourself "pulling a CRJ, or an air florida" or the like, you run away from it and save yourself, the crew and passengers, and those poor innocents on the ground.

thoughts?

jon

barit1
21st Feb 2006, 02:35
As I've said before, there are three kinds of people: Those who learn from their own mistakes; Those who learn from others' mistakes; and those who never learn.

The second category is to be preferred. :ouch:

alf5071h
21st Feb 2006, 09:15
Mike Really??!! – Unfortunately, yes.
Many years ago, the ‘level flight’ method was advocated as FAA approved training; the manufacturers led by Airbus reinstated the more conventional reduction in AOA method of recovery.
However, more recently in those modern aircraft not cleared for a full stall (stick push) without additional instrumentation, in-flight training has been restricted to approaching the stall - stick shake only. Here the recovery may be wings level using a power out technique.
Unfortunately, this technique has crept into simulator training, and onto other aircraft types when demonstrating a full stall. “First learnt – best remembered” ‘Bad habits hard to forget’ – especially when stressed or mis-assessing the risk of an alt bust vs a stall.

Clandestino
21st Feb 2006, 10:08
Dear jondc9

as to air intakes and being blanked by the wing, does that mean the t tail was blanked by the wing too?

It will be up to NTSB experts to have the final say wether tail blanketing was involved too, but I doubt it. Tail blanketing on T-tails easily leads to deep stall from which recovery is possible only by the means of antispin chute, installed only for test flights. Don't anyone get an idea we should use those chutes in regular operation, we have stick-pushers preventing deep stall nicely, unless overriden.

unless you personally have knowledge of flew the CRJ at FL410 with exact weights, speeds, aoa and the rest, specualtion on the capability of the air intake is a bit odd. and bringing up a slew of fighter planes means nothing

I've never, ever flown any jet, at any level, let alone CRJ at FL410, but aerodynamics and jet powerplants were part of my fATPL syllabus! Important lesson was that short, circular engine intakes are quite efficient at low AoA but at high AoA they tend to disturb airflow to engine and all kind of nasties, like compressor stall, can happen. Difference between CRJ and aforementioned fighter jets is that they're designed for manuevering at altitude while CRJ and all the rest of paxjets are only good for cruising! If you want to manuever at altitude, put big wedge-shaped, downturned intakes well ahead of your fan or compressor's first stage and set them ahead of the wing or below the fuselage - very practical indeed if you're designing the pax jet. So don't redesign the plane, stick to its limitations and procedures.

still, no matter what really happened and why, every pilot today now knows that the GE engines on the CRJ need to be respected and given a safer envelope.

Every pilot who was ever worth of being called pilot knows that his engine has to be respected, be it GE, P&W, Klimov, Lycoming or Rotax! The ones that needed this crash to find out their engines are to be respected are indeed :mad: poor pilots. I really hope they're only product of my sick imagination. I'm pretty certain that in order to attach engine to aircraft, manufacturer has to demonstrate that engine's envelope always matches or exceeds aircraft's one. Now go on and suggest it was CRJ's tiny envelope at fault.

Let's not be too harsh to our fallen comrades in the CRJ. They taught us all something

I haven't seen much of our deceased comrades bashing around and besides no one can be more harsh to our colleagues than themselves. We've seen execution of the capital punishment, now the NTSB (http://www.ntsb.gov/Events/2005/Pinnacle/exhibits/) will tell what preceeded it, but from preliminary reports I don't think there will be many new lesons to learn. My guess is they'll be: Don't climb too slow. Don't let your airspeed bleed off. If you have sufficient altitude and insufficent airspeed, make a trade-off. Power available goes down with altitude. Always respect your stall warning. If you lose all power, go for best glide and turn towards nearest appropriate landing area before trying to restart. Respect and obvserve SOPs, checklists and limitations, they're there to save your life.

Maybe that's just me but my instructors taught me all of that before I was allowed to touch the aeroplane, let alone fly it. And I'm talking about cessna 150 here.

One atitude that worries me and it was amply demonstrated on this forum is: "Aircraft was certified to fly at FL410, so it should have held that level". So you bring your shiny jet to some high level, leave power at climb and speed starts to trickle away. Now what do you do? A)Come to conclusion that either manufacturer lied to you or you don't know the whole story and start descending or B) stubbornly remain on your level because plane-has-to-be-capable-of-doing-it even when shaker warns you it's not good idea. Please answer it for yourself while it's still hipothetical

jondc9
21st Feb 2006, 14:45
regarding stalls:

yes I meant altitude and not attitude...though wings level does help.

I am constantly reminded that the Wright Brothers still know more than the FAA.

They knew enough to take off and land into the wind. (they moved from ohio to north carolina to do this and the FAA still allows tail wind operations at Chicago Midway, but don't get me started on that one)

To decrease AOA when stalling.

And to avoid Wind Flurries ( their words for what we know now as windshear)

by the way, is it possible that the CRJ in question was some how over loaded and the pilots didn't know the true weight.

you see, at night, "empty" one would expect the plane to be more sprightly in performance than fully loaded.


oh well,

jon

barit1
21st Feb 2006, 15:51
...One atitude that worries me and it was amply demonstrated on this forum is: "Aircraft was certified to fly at FL410, so it should have held that level". So you bring your shiny jet to some high level, leave power at climb and speed starts to trickle away. Now what do you do? A)Come to conclusion that either manufacturer lied to you or you don't know the whole story and start descending or B) stubbornly remain on your level because plane-has-to-be-capable-of-doing-it even when shaker warns you it's not good idea. Please answer it for yourself while it's still hipothetical

It means either that:
1) You've reach 410 by unsound means, too high a ROC, putting you on the back side of the power curve, or
2) The engine(s) or airplane is subpar (draggy, overweight, whatever) for some reason beyond your control.

In this case I'll pick your A). :)

Red Mud
21st Feb 2006, 15:57
Clandestino ... "Come to conclusion that either manufacturer lied to you or you don't know the whole story and start descending"
Think about the circumstances of their arrival at FL410. Aircraft have recommended climb profiles for a reason and, should you choose not to follow them, you do so at your own peril. If you get well behind the power curve at the edge of your aircraft's operating envelope you should choose to descend of your own volition. Either way it is soon not going to be an option. CRJs fly quite well at FL410 if you abide by the performance tables and recommended climb procedures. It is not dangerous or even risky but it is certainly no place for amateurs or cowboys. As for the relight procedures ... follow the AFM. It is no time to start being creative.

broadreach
22nd Feb 2006, 01:10
Quoting Clandestino:

"If you lose all power, go for best glide and turn towards nearest appropriate landing area before trying to restart."

There's been discussion here as to whether the priority should have been to relight or establish the best glide to an alternate. Mostly either/or. Clandestino's quote above states the blindingly obvious. What one thought was the basic airmanship learned in unreliable machinery over hostile terrain: always have half an eye out for some place to put the thing down and get out intact.

These two pilots were within gliding distance of more than one airport, weren't they. When they came around to considering the possibility of having to deadstick, it was too late.

It's almost embarrassing to ask if there's a generalised mindset, some sort of overconfidence to do with the US being dotted so densely with airports, that might lead people, like these two, to invert the priorities.

stixits
22nd Feb 2006, 01:20
Any other CRJ1 or 2 driver here that wonders why they flew at F410 and not to a max of F370 due to company regs?

Flight Safety
22nd Feb 2006, 03:07
In a brief search of the Internet I didn't find any good engine restart statistics, and I wish I had them to back up this discussion, but I really want to elaborate on what Broadreach said:

What one thought was the basic airmanship learned in unreliable machinery over hostile terrain: always have half an eye out for some place to put the thing down and get out intact.
Truly when all engines shutdown (whether a single, dual, tri, or quad) at any significant altitude, basic airmanship must be:


secure O2 if needed
start a glide to a landing
try a restart

If you can glide to a landing with all engines out, your odds of survival are good. If you can get a successful engine restart, your odds of survival are even better.

Again engine restart stats would be helpful here, but I think it's fair to assume that when all engines shutdown, the odds of a successful restart are generally fair, but I'd think they are less than 50 percent. I also think it's fair to assume that if you do get an engine restart, that the odds of having full power are less than 50 percent (either less than all engines, or less than full power from any engine, including a single).

The reasons I think the odds would fall somewhere in these ranges, has to do with the common reasons for all engines shutting down. Some of these are:


Icing
Fuel exhaustion
Fuel contamination
Fuel transfer problem
FOD damage (large volumes of water, ice ingestion, hail, ash, etc.)
Airflow disruption (maneuvering error, etc)
Maintenance error (that is common to all engines)
Pilot procedure error
Engine overtemp
Other reasons

Some of these reasons will not even allow an engine restart, and others will not allow full power after a restart. Only healthy engines, good fuel, and good fuel transfer will allow full power after a restart. In this accident we had 2 of these reasons present, airflow disruption and engine overtemp. At best, maybe the left engine could have been restarted, however this accident might have another reason for a restart failure, "core lock".

I really think that the odds are perhaps 1-in-4 (and maybe less) that you can regain full power after an all engine shutdown. Therefore I think the above basic procedure is paramount to your survival, should you suffer an all engine shutdown at altitude.

Sunfish
22nd Feb 2006, 03:23
Flightsafety, regarding 'grinding" of seals, blades, etc. GE were not kidding. This is a recognised process called "tip grinding" conducted on a massive thing called ...a tip grinder.

You put the built up shaft assembly into the grinder, spin it up to 2000-3000 rpm and then apply the grinding wheel to the tips of the blades, that way you are setting tip clearances under something closer to the dynamic loads and you can thus set tighter tolerances elsewhere.

Ignition Override
22nd Feb 2006, 06:20
JonDC9 (by the way, nice plane):
Quite true, and "...those who forget the lessons of history are doomed to repeat them" or similar words. About those accidents:

One major problem at Air Florida is that the First Officer (on probation) KNEW that something was not right, and said something ("those gauges don't look right"?) but they were already on the takeoff roll. There were probably no recommended minimum N1 settings back then on the P&W engines, i.e. 88-92%. Many pilot might consider ordering "Blind Trust" by John Nance. He established definite links between US de-regulation and airline accidents. His book about Braniff was so fundamental that the threat of libel (allegedly' at the insistence of American Airlines ;) ) caused the publisher to destroy the book's first edition!

Will the British/Irish and Europeans, often suffering under their de-regulation, learn some of these mistakes the hard way? If they are unfamiliar with past events on other continents, are repititions almost impossible-because their nations are supposedly highly-regulated and maneuvers+ flows and checklists+SOPA call-outs are rigidly complied with? Will weather forecasting theory and clearway methodology etc be an adequate prevention (say we lose an IRS, then *** and then an EFIS screen...)? :cool:
After the TWA accident, Approach Controller told their aircraft to "maintain **** (altitude) until established on an (published) approach segment", or such.

The more Captains think that they know it all and display an equivalent ego, the harder it is for a junior FO (especially new at the company) to clearly question or contradict the Captain's decisions. The MD-80 at Little Rock had an FO on probation with a Chief Pilot-tough combination?
Not for us, hiding here behind our computer monitors, about to single-handedly fly a WW2 plane against an enemy aircraft (...Forgotten Battles...) or anti-aircraft fire.

Or better yet, tomorrow-in the left seat. If we allow an ego to inflate, and don't want to consider other crewmember's advice or questions, we cut corners on safety. For you newer, younger pilots, what character types should fly YOUR family around?

jondc9
22nd Feb 2006, 11:28
ignition over-ride

yes the DC9 is wonderful. and we have a setting called, IGNITION OVERIDE! quite handy setting too!

yes, ego in cockpit has caused so many accidents. in my first 6 weeks at airline "x" we were going to IND (indianapolis, indiana) at night. I had never been there and asked the captain for vectors to the ILS from atc. he said, look the damn airport is right over there you moron.

I said, I don't see it, but if you do...

the next moment atc says, "where the hell are you going".


we got the ILS


the next morning, to his credit, the captain apologized.



somewhere out there is a movie about the air florida crash, (maybe called ''miracle on the potomac''?). Hope everyone sees it. Great stuff. One crew is briefing takeoff and talking about going to firewall power if needed, the air florida crew is so laid back that there is no thinking going on in the left seat.


Probabtion at airlines should last through the last day of sim training. AFter that you are either qualified or not.

I really can't stand any of John Nance's books. or John Nance for that matter either. But I do agree with the idea that deregulation is making airline flying unsafer.


As to the idea that some pilots in jets are not looking for emergency landing fields, it is quite true. Give some guys 2 jet engines or 2 engines at all and they forget you might just want to get on the ground pronto for one reason or another.

When I was an active CFII, I made my students under the hood with just vor/dme be able to glide towards an airport without an instrument approach. AFter all, the engine doesn't know you are vfr or ifr (vmc/imc)


As to other reasons for multiple engine failure, add VOLCANIC ASH.


regards

jon

barit1
22nd Feb 2006, 12:42
...
I really can't stand any of John Nance's books. or John Nance for that matter either. But I do agree with the idea that deregulation is making airline flying unsafer...

There have been bad examples long before deregulation as well as long after. (Gann will tell you about Dudley.)

But the statistics will show that overall safety has been on a steady improving path for decades, an order of magnitude better than a few decades ago, at least in the West. Don't throw out the baby with the bathwater!

jondc9
22nd Feb 2006, 14:55
There have been bad examples long before deregulation as well as long after. (Gann will tell you about Dudley.)
But the statistics will show that overall safety has been on a steady improving path for decades, an order of magnitude better than a few decades ago, at least in the West. Don't throw out the baby with the bathwater!


OK Barit1.


First off there are lies, damn lies and statistics. Second off, we cannot know how much safer airline flying would be if de-regulation had not happened. All the same advancements in engines, air frames, TCAS, enhanced GPWS plus an economic base that would prevent airlines from having to:

try to save money by not lubricating jack screws as often as the manufacturer thinks proper.

hiring outside mx (that's maintenance in aero shorthand) to rig elevators on a Beech 1900, then overloading it out of CG.

among other things that would take up too much space.


And yes, I know all about Dudley. To those who don't know, this was a pilot character in "Fate is the Hunter" by Ernest Kellog Gann. He somehow got a job as a pilot, a copilot on a new airline ( the steamship airline). He proved to be incompetent and after investigation it was found that Dudley didn't even have an instrument rating.


While spending lots of money is no guarantee of an accident free airline, I can guarantee that being cheap around airplanes doesn't guarantee safety either.


Bring Back the CAB and keep the advances we have made over the years. Do you want YOUR airliner maintained by a third world MX center?


jon

barit1
23rd Feb 2006, 00:02
OK Barit1.
First off there are lies, damn lies and statistics. Second off, we cannot know how much safer airline flying would be if de-regulation had not happened. All the same advancements in engines, air frames, TCAS, enhanced GPWS plus an economic base that would prevent airlines from having to...

We only have data on what has happened. We don't know for sure how much safety would have improved under a prolonged regulatory environment, and I think cases can be made either way - better or worse than today's level of safety.

What we know for sure is that fares have come down dramatically, there are FAR more folks flying today, and far more flight crews taking home paychecks. Return to the CAB and put thousands of airline people out of work? Well OK - have it your way... :ugh:

jondc9
23rd Feb 2006, 12:50
barit 1:

of interest to all. from the pen of Don Phillips.

maybe we can't unscramble the egg, but we can wonder.


Free flow: An airline deregulator has second thoughts
By Don Phillips International Herald Tribune

WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 22, 2006



The U.S. Congress would have killed airline deregulation a quarter century
ago if lawmakers had known the effect it would have on employees,
taxpayers and smaller cities, according to a man who helped make the bill
into law.

Tom Allison, then the chief counsel to the Senate Commerce Committee, said
the movement to allow open competition and remove restrictions on where
airlines could fly, now spreading through Europe and Asia, would prove to
be the right move over time. But it has produced so much disruption and
expense, he said, that no member of Congress would have dared vote for it
in 1980 if legislators had had a clear view of the future. And he said he
wished Congress had added significant human and financial protections to
the law.

Allison, now a semiretired attorney living in Seattle, contacted the
International Herald Tribune after reading a Free Flow column about
Jeffrey Shane, a top Transportation Department official who is shepherding
a series of regulatory changes designed to open U.S. and European skies to
much greater airline competition. At the same time, European airlines
would be allowed to invest more freely in U.S. airlines.

Allison and Shane worked together on the U.S. deregulation bill in 1979
and 1980, shortly after Allison left his position as a Senate staff member
to take a job in President Jimmy Carter's administration as general
counsel for the Transportation Department. Shane was then assistant
general counsel for international affairs.

Allison said that he had a great deal of respect for Shane and that they
both worked hard in 1979 and 1980 to shepherd deregulation through
Congress. But, he said, "I don't think Congress would have passed
deregulation if they had known what would happen."

The public now sees the effects mainly as lower airfares between big
cities, but it fails to understand some of the serious human and other
costs of deregulation, he said.

"I had no idea these things would occur," Allison said.

Airline employees in particular have suffered because of deregulation, he
said. In many cases, salaries have been cut and retirement benefits
slashed, he said, and unemployment has risen in the industry even as the
frequency of service increases.

Passengers may think they received a bargain with deregulation, and fares
have stayed relatively low on many routes between major cities around the
world, he said. But many small cities have lost air service entirely, and
the cost of flying to medium-size cities is much higher than it used to
be, he said.

"It's cheaper to fly to Paris than to Missoula," Montana, he said.

Despite all the freedom, airlines are also in terrible financial
condition, and many are in bankruptcy or just emerging from bankruptcy, he
said. At the same time, passengers suffer from a loss of service quality,
he added.

"It's not as nice as it used to be," he said.

One thing that many people overlook, including politicians, is the massive
shift of airline pension debt to the public, he said. Years ago, the
United States set up the Pension Benefit Guarantee Corporation to
guarantee that pensions would be paid even if a company went bankrupt or
went out of business.

The original expectation was that this government body would pay out a
relatively small amount of money and that a lot of that money would be
made up by seizing the assets of bankrupt companies.

But apparently, no one counted on the dumping of billions of dollars in
pension obligations by major transportation companies. U.S. transportation
companies may go bankrupt under Chapter 11 of the bankruptcy law, which
does not result in a shutdown but instead protects the company from
creditors while the company reorganizes. Thus, transportation company
pensions may be dumped on the government with no real way to recoup
federal costs.

"A private cost is shifted to a public cost," he said.

Allison said he would never go back to the days of strict regulation, but
if he could do it over he would add more safeguards for workers and the
public.

"I don't think you could go back," he said. "Once you scramble the egg,
it's scrambled."

E-mail: [email protected]

barit1
23rd Feb 2006, 13:12
barit 1:
of interest to all. from the pen of Don Phillips.

... "A private cost is shifted to a public cost," he said...

That works both ways. There was a huge public cost of CAB regulation that millions of Americans paid, but never enjoyed the benefit of.

(And the many thousand of blacksmiths and buggy-whip makers and streetsweepers displaced by Mr. Ford's Model T had their pensions funded by... Who?) :ouch:

AlR
23rd Feb 2006, 13:31
Unforunately, our legal system capitalizes on the uneducated, passionate Juries to determine guilt. No doubt this one will be settled by a Jury of Truck drivers, housewives, and Food Service workers that have never been exposed to the consquences of responsibility.

Our system of Justice has evolved into the infamous $-liability-$ issue and how much can be squeezed out of an Individual or Corporation that happened to be near the incident in question.

When our President uses "legalize" to tell the Nation that Oral Sex in the Oval Office is not really Sex, he is telling the Legal system it is okay redefine a situation's true intent for liability protection.

Doesn't really matter what happened at FL410 above Jefferson, Missouri that night. Our indescriminate Lawyers will find the way force a Corporation's Insurance Co. to pay out early in order they may avoid a costly confrontation in Court in front of an overly compassionate , under-informed Jury.

Red Mud
23rd Feb 2006, 14:46
Having read the past grouping of posts I now fully understand what it means to hijack a thread.

Semaphore Sam
23rd Feb 2006, 21:29
Climb technique: it has been mentioned here that using v/s modes to climb is unsafe; I disagree. Especially at higher altitudes, turbulence and temp variations during climb, using airspeed/mach with autopilot, can result in large variations in pitch, as airspeed fluctuates and the autopilot pitches up and down to catch up; autopilot lag can result in ever increasing pitch variations, making the climb uncomfortable and erratic. Climb in v/s used to be quite standard; adjust the v/s to maintain an airspeed/mach, which can be much smoother, as small variations can be averaged out. The problem is inattention; setting 500 feet/min and forgetting about it, is as silly as setting 290 airspeed up to 410. A minimum, at least, of attention is required in all cases. V/S is just as safe, with proper attention, as any other mode; it DOES require a little care, but then this IS aviation.
BTW, Mr. Don Phillips is a great writer, on railways as well as aviation.

Alycidon
23rd Feb 2006, 21:37
I have on good authority that a UK registered CRJ 200 on revenue service had a similar problem at high altitude en route LYS - BHX in June 2001, but the crew were able to recover to a lower altitude and continue to destination.

Does anyone have further information on this?

Were any lessons learned?

No.9

jondc9
24th Feb 2006, 01:33
alycidon:

I have not heard of this one, but lessons learned are not always shared properly.

the British CAA knew all about 737 problems taking off in ice with minimum flaps/leds. sadly air florida didn't know about this.

In canada, they knew about problems with Fokker F28 aircraft taking off in icing conditions...sadly usairways didn't know this.

I am not blaming the CAA or Canadian equiv. I blame people who don't actively seek out information to prevent crashes.

to the person that thinks Don Phillips is a good writer...YES he is! He is a pal of mine and I will tell him, or you can e mail me and I will give you his e mail address. He used to write for the Washington Post (great paper, especially ifyou hate bush!)but now writes for International Herald Tribune out of the Paris office.

I met him while talking about an american airlines near accident at Windsor Locks ( hartford, conn's airport). I'm sure you all remember how they got a little low and sucked some trees (lucky for them, they were in an MD80 and not a 737).

jon

[email protected]

barit1
24th Feb 2006, 01:44
Don't the airplane companies have periodic All Operators Conferences? It ssems to me this information should be shared at this level if nothing else. I have seen much great info passed around at All Ops.

Sem. Sam - While I'm pleased to see an autopilot so stable in V/S mode, I'm not sure all autopilots are this way; Some may be better in other modes.

Semaphore Sam
24th Feb 2006, 06:24
Hi Barit1
Absolutely! On the glass heavies I flew, v/s was more stable when temps/turbulence caused fluctuations (747-400), and the small Falcon 900. Also, it worked on 747 classic models, and L1011 (when not climbing to max ceilings, it made little difference, although v/s was smoother). If different modes are more stable on other equipment, well, you go with that. Whatever works. It's just that outlawing the v/s mode, arbitrarily, takes away its possible advantages. Salutations, Sam.

captjns
24th Feb 2006, 14:40
alycidon:


sadly air florida didn't know about this.

I'm sure you all remember how they got a little low and sucked some trees (lucky for them, they were in an MD80 and not a 737).

jon

[email protected]

You need to get your facts straight.

Air Florida did not follow procedures outlined within their cold weather operations manual. They neglected to turn on EAI as requried, and exceeded there de-icing holderhover time before takeoff.

Do you know why the American Airlines MD-80 "sucked some trees" as you put it?

Read the accident reports which are both available on the NTSB web site.

jondc9
24th Feb 2006, 16:48
facts straight.

ok, sure Air Florida didn't turn on engine anti ice...but my point was that they didn't use a flap setting which the british found to be more advantageous in contaminated operations. (ice). the british knew and others either knew, or didn't choose to use the info


American "sucked trees" for a number of reasons...trees grow and haven't been measured for charts, but also a rapidly changing barometric situation. this became an altimetry problem too.

one could also argue that all runways should have ILS approaches. obstacles would prohibit it at bdl on that runway.

if you really want to discuss more, that's fine, but we should open a new thread...veiled threats of thread hijacking.

the point to be made is to share information.

Latte tester
24th Feb 2006, 21:53
Jondc9, it's been a little over a month since you posted your thread... "if I were King..."
Thank God no one paid much attention to that line, obviously you're not King and never will be, especially with that closed mind of yours.
You obviously didn't read or remember reading the explanation as to why 41,000" is the service ceiling.
If your moniker is any indication of the equipment you fly or flew, then I can understand your ignorance.
GV, GEX are two aircraft certified for 51,000', how many times do they fly that high? Not many, and if at all, it is after a very long flight, they are light and the ISA is in agreement.
Read the book!:mad:

jondc9
24th Feb 2006, 23:11
latte tester:

are you saying the CRJ's service ceiling is FL410 or it's certfied maximum altitude is FL410? There is a difference.

many planes can go to 510, some even higher ( in the civilian world). and of course conditions must be present to allow that.

But why go that high? And please, let's not talk about fuel efficency or economics. If you are flying that type of plane, your boss has money.

There are more and more dangers the higher you go. Even other than aerodynamic. Even now some pilots are buying and using radiation dosemeters.

Wanting to stay closer to the middle of the envelope doesn't seem like a bad thing to me.

by the way, what do you fly?

jon

broadreach
24th Feb 2006, 23:48
Red Mud and others, I could apologise for having assisted in thread creep (not hijacking, which would have to be purposeful) but I don't feel I should, really.

Coming back to the issue, most comments on here have condemned the two pilots' conduction of the repositioning flight. When I read that CVR transcript I was stunned, wouldn't dare to comment. 20-20 hindsight. On re-reading, though, editing all the expletives and substituting all the Dudes by actual names, it seems pretty humdrum at the beginning. At least superficially and, I'd wager, if you'd read only the beginning of the transcript (again, all expletives and idiowhatevers deleted), there'd be a twinge of envy amongst those who don't normally have the opportunity to take the machine to its limits. A clear night, smooth, empty aircraft, "C'mon, let's see what this baby can really do!"


Then that rapid succession of problems they were obviously unprepared for, never even considered; the absence of what should have been instinctive reactions, almost denial. You can talk all night about the merits or otherwise of bringing back the CAB but it would be avoiding the issue of what sort of training/corporate selection/etc allowed that combination of overconfidence and lack of foresight to develop.

jondc9
26th Feb 2006, 18:38
[/QUOTE]but it would be avoiding the issue of what sort of training/corporate selection/etc allowed that combination of overconfidence and lack of foresight to develop.
[/QUOTE]

Ok, let's get back to the subject and I am sorry for any creep.

Pilots should be well trained, motivated to keep "sharp" at their skills. More frequent and demanding simulator sessions might be one solution. Bonuses for excellence in flight techniques might be helpful too.

Perhaps airline's should actually judge pilot candidates by their skills at flying rather than so many other things. Perhaps there is something wrong with hiring people that have just paid some $70,000 dollars to your flight school division. Perhaps finding people with really solid real world experience and paying them for their knowledge might help.


I've heard that you can get a job as a CRJ copilot for some 20k a year...but you have to put up some 70k for training.

The passengers get a low time copilot who will actually believe everything the "company" says about flying.

While I do not know the experience level of the pilots in questiong, the idea of furthering the skills of all pilots in commercial operations is important.


In my 30 years in aviation I have seen pilots in command of transport catagory aircraft who didn't know that:

you can go below DH if you have the approach light flashers in sight to TDZE plus 100 feet.

that the big white rectangles painted on the runway actually mean something.

that it is good to fly stable approaches.

that using mach hold in the autopilot controls can make the airplane climb in an uncomfortable fashion for the passengers.

etc.

It used to be that pilots were well paid with lots of time off. Properly used, the time off would assure a rested pilot reporting for duty. Good pay meant they wanted to be good at what they did so they could hold the job.


things have changed.

jon

Huck
27th Feb 2006, 17:20
In other words, you pay peanuts - you get monkeys.

By the way, 1000 hours in the 50 seat CRJ, and my climb technique was thus: 250 to 10k, then pitch over to 5 degrees nose up and engage pitch hold.

Speed would creep up above profile, then creep back below, but you would make it very comfortable for the pax and the FA, who had to muscle the cart up and down the aisle.

No danger of stalling - not if you "fly the airplane," a little trick I learned long ago that still serves me well in this world of glass....

jondc9
27th Feb 2006, 22:24
Huck

I think the pitch method is quite fine as long as you are actively involved in monitoring things. very comfortable for all concerned.

there are those who speak of a flight path that climbs, minimal time level, and then descends to destination. they brag of fuel conservation.

but in passenger operations with a f/a food service, it is nice to give them a little longer in level flight on the shorter legs. so climb and level off a bit sooner at a lower altitude (other conditions considered).



jon

Fokker28
15th Mar 2006, 17:58
Let me ask you: What altitude does a loaded 747 go to initially? It sure as hell ain't the published ceiling!!:eek: To get there, you have to be light, and on a loooonnnnnggg leg. Guess what? The same goes for a CRJ!


Actually, that's not necessarily true, depending on the CRJ in question. I have climbed the -700 to FL410 directly (on a revenue leg).