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slate100
24th Jul 2019, 16:31
I'm wondering about this scenario in an A320...

Engine fire at Vr.
400 feet you run the ECAM action and you secure the engine.

But... let's assume the engine fire does not go out. The light stays illuminated.

What do you? Do you do a 180 degree turn and land back on the departure runway? Or do you continue normally... push to level off and clean up, and complete the Ecam...

I recall an instructor said you have roughly 7 minutes to live with an uncontained fire.

lomapaseo
24th Jul 2019, 19:22
I'm wondering about this scenario in an A320...

Engine fire at Vr.
400 feet you run the ECAM action and you secure the engine.

But... let's assume the engine fire does not go out. The light stays illuminated.

What do you? Do you do a 180 degree turn and land back on the departure runway? Or do you continue normally... push to level off and clean up, and complete the Ecam...

I recall an instructor said you have roughly 7 minutes to live with an uncontained fire.

I'm not so sure about the conversation with the instructor's statement..

Of course you fly the aircraft first, You are then dependent on the ability to defeat the fire. The odds (borne out historically) are definitely with you once airborne.Engine fires either stay with the engine a short time (until fuel cutoff) or end up behind you in a slip stream. Either way over a longer time, you always have the ability to confirm with eyeballs what is buining outside the engine and to take additional considered actions to get on the ground quickly

vilas
24th Jul 2019, 20:14
400 feet you run the ECAM action and you secure the engine.
But... let's assume the engine fire does not go out. The light stays illuminated. Incidentally unlike engine fail, in case of fire ECAM appears straight away. With fire at Vr after retracting the gear put the AP on and do the ECAM. However if you started the ECAM at 400ft by the time you fire the second shot and realize fire isn't gone you may be above 1000ft. It's silly to clean when you should be landing. Do an offset, turn around configure for downwind landing. After landing Evacuate.

birdstrike
24th Jul 2019, 21:42
'Do an offset' - it sounds so simple, but unless it's something you have practiced and briefed for I would suggest you are probably creating more problems than you are resolving. We used to throw it in unexpectedly during crew training and more often than not it turned into a shambles.

novice110
24th Jul 2019, 23:06
The idea of briefing the unexpected has always seemed a bit useless to me.

In this scenario you are on fire in the air, and the actions the crew take will not be briefed and that is ok.

Check Airman
25th Jul 2019, 01:09
PF sets up for an immediate return by joining the downwind. PM fights the fire. What's the complication?

krismiler
25th Jul 2019, 02:01
A 180' turn to land back on the departure runway could have you going head to head with another aircraft followed by a downwind landing. A MAYDAY call with a short circuit keeping the speed up as long as possible would probably be a better option.

vilas
25th Jul 2019, 05:49
PF sets up for an immediate return by joining the downwind. PM fights the fire. What's the complication?
Once second agent is discharged and it's realised that it hasn't worked there's nothing more left to fight the fire with. All that's left is to assess how much time you have what altitude you have reached. From 400ft to second agent discharge should put you above 1000ft. If you assess you have time for a circuit then do so. If required circuit can be done on select speed without any set up. The other option is to do a kind of procedure turn and land downwind with a May Day off course.

waren9
25th Jul 2019, 07:55
i've flown for 3 jet operators and not one of them has advocated for briefing for/or performing a reversal turn and landing downwind.

still, if everybody walks away you can call it a win i guess.

vilas
25th Jul 2019, 08:28
Any SFI teaching as SOP is not fit to be in position.
I thought you are a small cog. But you are shooting your mouth as if holding some regulatory position. I didn't teach. when your wing is on fire you just do what you think will save your ass. Nobody taught Sully to ditch but he did it. He could have gone back also. As long as he made it no questions would be asked.

vilas
25th Jul 2019, 08:41
i've flown for 3 jet operators and not one of them has advocated for briefing for/or performing a reversal turn and landing downwind.
Do you ever get taught for uncontrollable engine fire? The Concorde guys were they taught what to do when there is fire in tanks and no fire warning? Come on man! We are just discussing possible solutions. The OP suggested it. I only showed how to do it. And nobody briefs about all possible situations. You won't be departing on time.

Nightstop
25th Jul 2019, 09:01
A bit off topic but...Night take off from LGW in a BAe146, me PF. During gear retraction: “AVIONICS SMOKE” Master Warning. Emergency call from Cabin: “forward galley oven on fire, ceiling above melting”. Levelled off at 1000’ AGL and flew a left hand visual circuit to land back on 26L, vacated at FR and stopped. Fire extinguished, so no evacuation. Airbourne time 5 minutes, I wouldn’t have wanted to be up there any longer. (Avionics Smoke warning due to galley smoke being drawn into the avionics bay).

The Nr Fairy
25th Jul 2019, 13:05
Worth a read - https://www.gov.uk/aaib-reports/3-2001-hs748-series-2b-g-ojem-30-march-1998

HS748 (precursor to the ATP) which had an uncontrolled engine fire at V1/Vr and the commander feared fire destroying the wing spar.

Dissimilar to the A320 in that it would slower at Vr but an interesting thought process. Quick thinking by the commander on this one - result, 0 / 4 crew and 0 / 40 minor injuries.

Denti
25th Jul 2019, 17:35
Many people never flew a reversal in their flying career (yup, done it, out of around 100ft without an engine, quite foolish). To be able to pull it off with the added stress of a fire one cannot fight any more is a pretty remote possibility. Better do a normal visual circuit, which has been done quite a lot during every pilots training, enabling them to fall back on that very basic thing. And an engine fire does not mean that the wing is on fire, just that there is a very high temperature within the engine nacelle, since we usually cannot see the engine out of the flightdeck we cannot check visually, therefore we would have to rely on the cabin crew that at that stage is still strapped in, and where communication takes considerable time to begin with.

So, mayday, visual circuit, stop on the runway and check out if there is any real fire to begin with, just evacuating with a faulty indication would be quite stupid, after all the captain in that case might be liable for any injuries in certain jurisdictions.

vilas
25th Jul 2019, 18:29
Many people never flew a reversal in their flying career True! And you don't have to do it. But should you decide to do it for whatever reason then it's not a big deal. Engine fire at take off teaches you to do ECAM and fire goes out on first or second agent discharge. When it doesn't it's all yours. If it works no questions asked. If it doesn't then with or without you conclusions will be drawn. I know one case where with failure not fire radar vector was asked for and given and yet the pilot overshot and went round.

Fursty Ferret
26th Jul 2019, 03:07
Take a step back. For an engine fire to not go out requires both the high pressure and low pressure fuel valves to fail open. Hydraulic fluid will burn, but not well. So either you’re really unlucky (>10^9 probability) or this is your sole remaining engine (cowl door loss incident from a few years ago?).

The engine is nicely separated from the wing on the end of a pylon. Let it burn. Fly the aircraft. Should you screw up the turn back that you’ve never practiced you’re going to at least double your time in the air on the subsequent go around. What about traffic following you? Landing traffic? ATC? Tailwind? No ILS when you might really want one.

IMHO only... Keep flaps one. If you’re used to it, enter a visual circuit. Otherwise climb to 2000 or 3000 ft and fly a sensible approach. You’ll still be on the ground within 10 minutes.

felixthecat
26th Jul 2019, 07:15
180 turn for a downwind landing, on something that you have probably never practiced and even if you have maybe once under no real stress in the sim? I have messed around in the sim and it wasn’t any quicker than a quick return via normal circuit pattern. Plus Flying the pattern is reverting to normal ingrained skills so you are both on the same page and know what’s going on.

Just my 2 cents worth....

Jonty
26th Jul 2019, 13:38
For an engine fire I would do a circuit and land.

An uncontained cabin fire might be a different story.

saviboy
26th Jul 2019, 16:22
i've flown for 3 jet operators and not one of them has advocated for briefing for/or performing a reversal turn and landing downwind.

still, if everybody walks away you can call it a win i guess.

Every take offs I have done at my last 3 operators, we have briefed what we would do in case we need to do an emergency return. I always insert the departure airport longest runway in the secondary flight plan along with populating the secondary PERF APPR page for that runway. This was SOP at two of my last three airlines. the current one only has it as a "best practice". That way, whoever ends up flying the aircraft is only 2 or 3 key strokes from having the correct landing data in the FMGS and can now divide his/her attention at doing other things.

My current airline divides abnormals into "no time" and "time". A time problem could be an engine failure. There aren't too may problems that would be classified as "no time problem" but a smoke/fire event is certainly one of them. We are in the business of managing risks. Can we manage and plan for all risks? Of course no. But why would we not discuss the course of action that will be taken for the worst problem of all problems?
Almost anything else can be managed at a slower pace but not a fire.I think it's a good idea to be ready for it.

FullWings
26th Jul 2019, 18:09
Take a step back. For an engine fire to not go out requires both the high pressure and low pressure fuel valves to fail open. Hydraulic fluid will burn, but not well. So either you’re really unlucky (>10^9 probability) or this is your sole remaining engine (cowl door loss incident from a few years ago?).

The engine is nicely separated from the wing on the end of a pylon. Let it burn. Fly the aircraft. Should you screw up the turn back that you’ve never practiced you’re going to at least double your time in the air on the subsequent go around. What about traffic following you? Landing traffic? ATC? Tailwind? No ILS when you might really want one.

IMHO only... Keep flaps one. If you’re used to it, enter a visual circuit. Otherwise climb to 2000 or 3000 ft and fly a sensible approach. You’ll still be on the ground within 10 minutes.

I think this is sound advice.

Light aircraft, helicopters, etc. yes, you want to get it on the ground ASAP, off-airport if necessary. In a modern jet twin/triple/quad which may also be a “heavy”, trying to fly a turn back is difficult when it goes well and probably won’t save much time but will likely set you up for an unstabilised approach to a downwind landing.

If you’ve lost an engine, have a fire warning and are initially flying around at V2 (with the bank limitations that entails), what’s a turn back pattern going to look like? Much easier in an extreme workload situation to fly a wide pattern to an instrument runway, which is a well-practiced manoeuvre and much more likely to end in success. There is also the bonus that everyone on the flight deck will be in a familiar situation and able to monitor/help effectively.

As FF above, I regard an engine fire warning as something that requires action but not to the point of compromising safety in other ways. What does a fire indication tell you? All it means is that, false warnings aside, the temperature in the nacelle has reached a certain point (175 to 300C in some installations, depending on which area) and if the warning is still active, that the temperature is still above that level. It doesn’t necessarily follow that you are burning brightly and dropping bits of wing and engine over the countryside...

tdracer
27th Jul 2019, 00:13
As FF above, I regard an engine fire warning as something that requires action but not to the point of compromising safety in other ways. What does a fire indication tell you? All it means is that, false warnings aside, the temperature in the nacelle has reached a certain point (175 to 300C in some installations, depending on which area) and if the warning is still active, that the temperature is still above that level. It doesn’t necessarily follow that you are burning brightly and dropping bits of wing and engine over the countryside...

It probably bears noting here that a significant percentage of fire warnings are either false alarms, or simply nacelle overheats related to things like burst ducts. The numbers vary considerably between different airframes and engine types (no idea what the numbers are for an A320), but there are some (older) installations where the numbers approach 50% false. Most newer installations are better than that, but none are 100% accurate. I only know of one scenario where engine fire required absolute immediate action to save the aircraft - that was a combustor case rupture right on the top - resulting in 3000 deg F was impinging directly on the strut and could compromise the spar fuel shutoff valve in something like 30 seconds (leaving you unable to turn off the fuel to the fire). It's probably worth noting that there is no record of this ever actually happening.
Don't panic, do the checklist.
I think this is sound advice.
Bingo!

vilas
27th Jul 2019, 06:35
Tdracer
It probably bears noting here that a significant percentage of fire warnings are either false alarms, or simply nacelle overheats related to things like burst ducts Which is true and a few reject takeoffs due to fire warning even after V1 resulting in runway overrun were found to be false alarms. While there is no doubt that Checklist should always be done and are done but perhaps you could shed some light when the checklist goes silent after the second agent discharge and the fire is not out. Although not many incidents but why would it happen and how serious would be the implications. Thanks

Max Angle
27th Jul 2019, 10:31
Does any data exist on the effectiveness of the fire extinguishing systems? It is such a rare event that maybe there isn't but it would be interesting to know how many fire warnings persist after both bottles have been fired.

lomapaseo
27th Jul 2019, 14:53
Does any data exist on the effectiveness of the fire extinguishing systems? It is such a rare event that maybe there isn't but it would be interesting to know how many fire warnings persist after both bottles have been fired.

as long as your asking one question. It also makes sense to ask how many real fires existed after using the extinguishing system

and it now appears we have morphed into any aircraft fire source, rather than just an engine, so be sure and make that is clear in a response

The biggest problem we have seen in the data are the false warnings followed by using up the extinguishing system against the much rarer but far more serious persistent fire.

The procedures developed up to now, recognize this and one should think hard before abandoning them

tdracer
27th Jul 2019, 21:34
Tdracer
While there is no doubt that Checklist should always be done and are done but perhaps you could shed some light when the checklist goes silent after the second agent discharge and the fire is not out. Although not many incidents but why would it happen and how serious would be the implications. Thanks

Sorry, but in that regard you're well out of my area of expertise.

Max Angle - some sort of Halon compound is the most common extinguishing agent for aircraft engines. However Halon is considered environmentally nasty and new stuff hasn't been made for many years. Hence some new installations use more environmentally friendly agents - the KC-46 uses something that's basically baking soda.
I've never heard any concerns regarding the effectiveness of Halon - only concerns about it's environmental impact - the stuff seems to work quite well. The newer stuff I'm not so sure about - although my coworkers responsible for fire safety didn't seem overly concerned.

Lazy Donkey
3rd Oct 2019, 10:08
At a previous airline, the Airbus FMGS secondary flight plan was simply a “copy of the Active”. Not a good plan. It leaves one with a really significant programming deficit should you need to fly an immediate return.

What should be done with the secondary is, after the last point on your SID, use a lateral key to enable the “New Destination” prompt. Insert CYVR. Insert the ATIS landing runway, and on the SEC PERF page, insert the weather and the MDA or DH. And on the G/A page, set the MAP altitude as the acceleration altitude. Now a couple more useful keystrokes. A lateral off the new destination (CYVR) will give you the ALTNT prompt, where you can put in KSEA. Why not? So established, the secondary flt plan is completely set for the return approach, the missed approach, and a nearby alternate. All speeds, fuel predictions and weights will be accurate as soon as it is activated. Setting this out, on the written page, it sounds like a lot of work – but with just a bit of practice, these significant FMGC inputs rob one of only a couple quick gulps of coffee.

Now to the “Immediate Return Briefing” that you simply append to your standard Take-Off Emergency Briefing:

“If it is imperative to get the aircraft on the ground right away, same ECAM drill; we’ll clean up to 1+F, climb at S Spd to ___’ ASL,activate the SEC, activate the APPR. and take vectors/self position ourselves for a downwind L/R for an ILS/RNAV/etc. Rwy __. We are over the Ldg Wt. however, for Rwy__, the APP. climb gradients and field length are/are not limiting. We will have to run the Over Wt. Ldg Checklist. Questions, concerns, comments?”

And the procedure:

IMMEDIATE RETURN

Engine Failure and/or Fire

- as per V1 fail to “Stop ECAM” then:
- With the initial ECAM items complete, and at or above the acceleration altitude – press ALT.
- Accelerate and clean up.
- At “F” speed, “Flap 1”
- Select “S” speed
- At “S” speed, ALT pull set MCT

Select and verify an appropriate altitude.
- Bird On and obtain a clearance or self position to downwind

- At Alt* activate the SEC, and activate the approach.
- Call for the Status page, and ask for a review of the landing and stopping items.
- Call for the “Overweight Landing QRH”.
- Abeam the threshold start timing, or instruct ATC for an appropriate gate.
- At 45 seconds (for 1500’) call “Flap 2, A/P off, F/D off, set Runway Track”.
- When flap 2, “Gear down”.
- When gear down, “Flap 3 Ldg Checklist”. (all engine, “Flap Full Ldg Checklist”)

- Just check Gear and appropriate Flap.
-Secure/Alert the cabin.



- Land
- After stopping prepare for Evac, as per RTO.

Documents state (and having run performance examples confirm) that if you took off from the runway, you will be able to land on it – barring a deterioration of the RSC (runway surface condition) so long as you have at least one reverser operative.

The serious and practical point is, that with just half a minute of preflight attention and programming, you are completely set up for a quick return and can devote your time to the situation and the landing – not hopelessly trying to do all that plus correctly enter all the keyboard work while you're on fire and everybody is talking at you.

HME
5th Dec 2022, 12:38
Most pilots are not trained enough to fly back immediately. The sim tarining is not a training but just a checkTraining means doing and doing until you can do the lesson. You can't just learn to do that from booksThis is just the beginning. Once you have learned it, you have to stay in practice and not just the check every 5 months. That's not enoughThe quick return is easy to do once you're trained. If you are not trained, but only checked every 5 months, after a few years you will no longer be able to do it. Checks are a must - training as well.