View Full Version : Whizz Air 320 gear unsafe landing FCO

8th Jun 2013, 07:40
A320 landed on FCO with unsafe gear.

Tower advised the crew that their left main gear was not in the proper position.

Crew landed after a couple of maneuvers to force the gear in position.


Minor injuries due to evacuation after landing

No further info...

8th Jun 2013, 07:48
Emergency evacuation done. 3 minor injuries, problems with landingear.
Flight was OTP-Ciampino, but ended up on FCO.

Btw, its Wizz Air.

8th Jun 2013, 09:38

Wouldn't fancy evacuating from the R1 door :E

8th Jun 2013, 09:45
I don't understand why the nose wheel is off the ground?????:confused:

THAT'S the problem with the slide, which I thought were designed to accommodate a collapsed gear?

I certainly wouldn't imagine anyone would wish to evacuate onto the damaged side of the a/c. I'm expecting some injuries during evac??

8th Jun 2013, 09:49
If one of the main gears is not downlocked the plane will rest on that sides engine, the tail section and the extended gear.

8th Jun 2013, 09:52
Why would it rest on the tail section??????

I suggest that's unusual?? Any precedent?

Edited to add: of course this picture seems to have been taken some time after the evac. Perhaps this wasn't how it rested DURING the evac?

8th Jun 2013, 10:17
Nothing unusual about that. This is a shorter A319, so the aft belly is not resting on the ground and the nose gear is closer to the ground.


ASN Aircraft accident Airbus A319-131 N816UA Newark-Liberty International Airport, NJ (EWR) (http://aviation-safety.net/database/record.php?id=20100110-0)

8th Jun 2013, 10:20
Forward slide easily touches the ground there. As it is designed to do. If Wizzair is 'usual' Airbus may have a problem!! I have to ask again. Why is this A320 resting on it's tail?? That 319 simply demonstrates the CofG is over the engine pod. Just as it should be in the A320. Perhaps a delay occurred evacuating the rear? Door and slide at D2R are in a different state to the front doors?

A (not unheard of) problem here has resulted in perhaps only one door and two over wings being available for evac. Though it does look as though D1L slide is also inflated.

Any other pictures of an A320 resting on it's tail after collapse of one main gear??

8th Jun 2013, 11:01
Some more pictures (http://roma.repubblica.it/cronaca/2013/06/08/foto/fiumicino_si_rompe_il_carrello_dell_aereo_atterraggio_di_eme rgenza_per_volo_wizz_air-60643750/1/#1), though not really much added value for the accident investigators on this forum ;)

Really would like to know how the nose up situation actually was during evacuation and which exit/slide was used by those sustaining minor injuries (of course every slide evacuation can lead to injuries, but the front slides as shown post incident, really could have added some extra freefall sensation :E)

8th Jun 2013, 11:08

Not really investigating anything. Just trying to understand some things I wasn't expecting to see.

Thanks for the pictures of the damaged side.

8th Jun 2013, 11:17
4468, sorry just realized my remark could have been taken personally. Actually, my remark was made with the LHR dual cowl topic in mind :{. This topic is still worth reading (although except for the high nose up, no big deal).
So please continue...

8th Jun 2013, 11:17
Main gear is behind the lowest part of the cowling, so take a leg away and the cofg is now behind the remaining leg and cowl.

8th Jun 2013, 11:25
LIRF not anticipating moving the disable acft before 1600 local time (1400utc) so delays of around one hour should persist until that time at the earliest.

8th Jun 2013, 11:29

I am of course aware of the fine CofG tolerances involved (particularly A321) but I'm not at all sure your geometry would represent the usual situation?? (Though what you have stated is clearly the case at FCO!) I have seen pictures this morning of other similar incidents which have not resulted in what we see here. (Can't find them now!!)

What you suggest is not even the case with the 319 above. In that case the CofG is BETWEEN the leg and the cowl, which is why the tail of the a/c is not in contact with the ground.

Unlike Wizzair.

As I say, just curious as it's not what I expected.

8th Jun 2013, 12:14
Could it be because most of the passengers decided to go to the aft door for a shorter ride down the chute.

Also I believe that the resting point on the engine cowl is much further forward of the landing gear position giving more of a lever action.

8th Jun 2013, 12:43

It just finds a new state of equilibrium, which can be anywhere between normal attitude to tail-on-ground.

8th Jun 2013, 13:42
Very well done to the guys involved in the incident. Good Job :ok:

8th Jun 2013, 13:48
From the additional pictures it looks like the left engine came to rest off the hard tarmac in the soft dirt shoulder. In photo No. 4 it appears like the lower part of the engine nacelle is partially dug into the ground, or, the ground the engine is resting on is lower the the tarmac itself (I can't really tell which). In either case, the lower engine position allowed the aircraft to "roll" more to the left than it could/should on a hard surface. With the remaining gear in tact, the additional roll caused the tail to touch the ground and pushed the right front evac slide up too high.

8th Jun 2013, 14:08
As a matter of fact only in the tail draggers the center of gravity should fall behind the main landing gear and not in tricycles, otherwise the aicraft will sit on her tail.
Perhaps "lomapaseo" got it right:
Could it be because most of the passengers decided to go to the aft door for a shorter ride down the chute.

8th Jun 2013, 14:51
Minor injuries in an emergency landing. Many things could have gone wrong here. Well done to the crew, regardless of what the position was of the airplane upon evacuation. Certainly D1R didn't look suitable.

8th Jun 2013, 16:27
LIRF landing rate back to normal from 1700 utc

8th Jun 2013, 23:44
Clip of the landing:

Incidente aereo Wizz Air - YouTube

9th Jun 2013, 09:22
I guess there will be a few red faced technocrats in Koln crying into their coffee on Monday morning, questioning the effectiveness of AD 2011-0069R1 at mitigating the long standing MLG door actuator issue.
EASA Airworthiness Directives Publishing Tool (http://ad.easa.europa.eu/ad/2011-0069R1)

This particular can has been kicked down the road for well over a decade.

Time for GE and Airbus to take definitive action?

9th Jun 2013, 17:24
Some operators reported slow operation of the MLG door opening/closing sequence, leading to the generation of ECAM warnings during the landing gear retraction or extension sequence.
Investigations showed that the damping ring and associated retaining ring of the MLG door actuator deteriorate. The resultant debris increases the friction inside the actuator which can be sufficiently high to restrict opening of the MLG door by gravity, during operation of the landing gear alternate (free-fall) extension system.
This condition, if not corrected, could prevent the full extension and/or downlocking of the MLG, possibly resulting in MLG collapse during landing or rollout and consequent damage to the aeroplane and injury to occupants.
Looks like you need to see Airbus AOT A320-32A1390 original issue dated 10 February 2011 and Airbus SB A320-32-1390 Revision 01 dated 21 September 2011 to see actual pictures of the problem.

I wonder whether or not Airbus has done any flight tests of methods to improve getting a down & locked indication? It would sure be a shame to have the means to get all rollers down but not the information on how to do it.
Perhaps positive g? Perhaps less than 1 g flight? Perhaps yaw?

Seems they have a new door actuator, but that too has problems. Lets hope the insurance companies get tired of this and put their feet down. Maybe the airlines need to bolt some oak runners to the bottom of the engine pods as an interim measure.:rolleyes:

Where are all the real engineers when you need one? (And I'm not talking wrench turners, these are the ones with the pocket protectors.) :}

Kilda Ste Hilda
9th Jun 2013, 18:19
What are your thoughts about landing totally wheels up, belly landing , on grass in this case? Some airports do have adjacent grass surfaces for this purpose, I think. Would the damage be less or more? The low slung engines on the B737 may make this option undesirable but not for the A320 family. Just thinking, easy with your flame throwers!

9th Jun 2013, 18:31
What's the significant difference between 737 and A320? They're both under slung (with 73 having a slightly lower "C of G") but chances are that the engines will dig in on a soft surface with resultant massive deceleration and probably ripping off of the engines. At least on a runway the secondary damage will be less.

Alexander de Meerkat
9th Jun 2013, 19:25
Kilda Ste Hilda. It may or may not be better to land gear up, but the specific advice of the Flight Crew Training Manual is as follows:

'If one landing gear is not downlocked, the flight crew must perform the LDG WITH ABNORMAL L/G QRH procedure. In this case, it is always better to land with any available gear rather than carry out a landing without any gear.'

Therefore the crew had no choice as that is the official guidance, presumably because Airbus have considered the various options and concluded this is the best way. Hope that helps.

9th Jun 2013, 20:10
The low slung engines on the B737 may make this option undesirable but not for the A320 family. Just thinking, easy with your flame throwers!Quick point of fact......
The airbus' cowlings project a little further below the fuselage line than those of the 737.
737 engines only appear lower when the aircraft is on the ground...due to its shorter legs

this might help.....

(It might also help the chap earlier who cant seem to grasp why the tail could sit down if one main gear collapsed on the Bus)
............................................................ ...............


9th Jun 2013, 23:01
I believe I may be 'that chap'!

And since your profile gives no clue as to your qualification to comment, I'm still waiting for such an explanation!

Thank you.

10th Jun 2013, 01:23
Kilda Ste Hilda
I am not sure if the fuselage has the strength to withstand the impact. B737NG broke up even on water but due to spongyness of water people survived. Also when landing without gear the impact will be at higher speed also it will be very difficult to execute proper flare, less will surely breakup the aircraft and more will break the tail and subsequent snap will breakup the aircraft. No I do not think it is a good idea. Landing with partial gear end trying to hold up as long as possible will reduce the speed and the force. It is the only way.

10th Jun 2013, 10:28
I gave it a go:

The blue dot in the middle is the CoG. In normal ops, the green line is the axis where the MLG supports the aircraft. This axis is AFT of the CoG, hence no problem at all.
In the second case, the right MLG is not extended. So the aircraft will sit on the left MLG and the engine pod. The orange line illustrates this. It is the axis through which the aircraft is supported now. This axis is forward of the CoG, so the airplane will start tipping backwards.

Bear in mind, this is a rough sketch. If I have time tonight, I might make a more detailed version, with actaul Airbus drawings. For now, I hope this explains what might have happened in my eyes.

10th Jun 2013, 10:49
Nose wheels are off the ground as the L/H MLG has not extendedThe aircraft sat on its tail during the evacuation of the passengers

10th Jun 2013, 12:50
Great job for the crew

10th Jun 2013, 17:07

Thanks. I had figured that was the geometry. Still doesn't stop me being surprised though, and I would be REALLY interested to see the accurate plan!

From the pictures of Wizzair, the suggestion is that the front door on the 'higher' side was unsuitable for evac?? It wouldn't be unreasonable to consider there to be a real fire hazard on the 'collapsed' side, and evac there inadvisable??

This effectively leaves one rear door (plus overwings - only one on most 319s) for evac of the entire a/c. Anybody know if this how the certification is calculated????

10th Jun 2013, 18:25
Right, having found a half hour of free time, this is what I came up with. I had to link the picture, since it would be too big to put it in the forums.
Some explanation:
I had to estimate the place where the aircraft is resting on the engine pod. While I am pretty certain it is within the red cone, I'd say it is probably within the cyan line and the aft red line.
The blue line indicates where the CoG could be during flight.
NOTE: I am NOT a licensed pilot, so I might have slipped up calculating the actual location of the CoG. (I did do the calculations twice though ;-) )
According to this, if the CoG was pretty far AFT, but still within limits, the theory still stands.
Oh, and copyright for this diagram remains with Airbus, of course.

25th Jun 2013, 17:27
Anyone recon this (http://www.caa.co.uk/docs/33/20130625EASAAD20130132E.pdf) is related?

25th Jun 2013, 18:44
I think the "following a recent occurrence with a gear extension problem" part might be a clue ...

28th Aug 2013, 18:43
The aircraft returned to service today.