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East African Airways VC 10 accident 1972 Addis Ababa

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East African Airways VC 10 accident 1972 Addis Ababa

Old 8th Mar 2010, 19:02
  #41 (permalink)  
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By chance, would anyone recall the flight crew names involved in this accident, and did they survive?
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Old 8th Mar 2010, 22:13
  #42 (permalink)  
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The accident is described in some detail in Peter Davis's excellent book EAST AFRICAN ..... An Airline Story.

Flight crew comprised Capt. John (Paddy) Vale
First Officer Ronald Botto,
Flight Engineer Brian Twist
Navigating Officer Frank McNabb.

Three of the flight crew died in the accident, Brian Twist died three days later.


Last edited by Planemike; 15th Apr 2010 at 14:28.
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Old 3rd Apr 2010, 14:38
  #43 (permalink)  
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'Morning Colin,

I was a co-pilot on VC10s with BCAL from 1971 - 1974. Used to spend quite a lot of time at Nairobi and Entebbe. Forgive me for stating what may seem the usual platitudes, but we were shocked, saddened, and perhaps a bit dismayed by your father's accident.

Round about that time, we started practising double-engine failures on take-off on our sim checks, having recognised the possibility of a shattered nose-gear tyre being ingested by more than one engine; probably on the same side. Whether the sudden emphasis was a spin-off from the Addis inquiry, I cannot remember.

A year or two ago I saw a super photo of an EAA Super VC10 on take-off from Brooklands. May've been on PPRuNe, but am unable to find it today.
(Can anyone help?)

As you may have seen, there are many other VC10 pics here though. (Have found that if you use the PPRuNe search to find VC10 stuff, you need to do separate searches for "VC10" and "VC 10" [i.e., with the space inserted after "VC"].)

Regards, Chris

Earlier on this thread, there was a discussion on how fast the VC10 was (believe she's now more restricted than in those days). Max IAS was, in fact, modest: significantly lower than the B707-320.

As Stanley Eevil said here,
MO was 337 at sea-level, reducing linearly to 317 at FL200;
then increasing linearly to 329 [sic] at FL310.

MO was 0.86 (true) (0.886 indicated) (no air-data computer to make the correction).

In early days, they probably cruised flat-out (range permitting) "on the bell".
By 1971, we normally cruised at M0.835 (M0.86 indicated); after 1973 (fuel crisis) M0.82 (M0.845 indicated).
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Old 7th Apr 2010, 08:16
  #44 (permalink)  
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Hello Colin,

I have gathered some information on the accident and compiled a story for my website here: Incidents and Accidents
If you want more details then don't hesitate to contact me through PPRuNe or the address on my site.
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Old 9th Apr 2010, 02:30
  #45 (permalink)  
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Dear Mr. Botto,

My name is Mary Wairimu and I used to work for EAA as a cabin crew.
Currently I live in New Jersey and my email address is: [email protected]

If you so wish you can write to me.

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Old 15th Apr 2010, 01:35
  #46 (permalink)  
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Pictures of 5X UVA

Hello there!

Please go to airliners.jet and browse for EAA VC 10s. You will see them there. Last Christmas I used the EAA VCs for post cards greetings.

Good Luck!

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Old 15th Apr 2010, 01:48
  #47 (permalink)  
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About the EAA VC 10 Crash in Addis


My name is Mary former EAA Cabin Crew, now residing in New Jersey. If you wish you could write to me at the following email address and will tell you all i know of the Accident:
[email protected]

Was a bit in rush.

Bye for now.

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Old 23rd Apr 2010, 01:42
  #48 (permalink)  
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EAA Super VC 10s

Hi Chris,

EAA had 5 Super VC 10 including the UVA involved in crash at Addis.

You can view all EAA's VC 10s at the airliner.net. Also If you visit the youtube, there is one flying at airshow in Kenya in 60's by Capt. Ratcliffe has a beautiful piece of music in the show. At youtube too, if you look for international flights landing in Athens, there is a beautiful EAA VC 10 there.

Good luch.

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Old 23rd Apr 2010, 16:39
  #49 (permalink)  
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Colin, I've sent you a PM.
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Old 26th Apr 2010, 12:03
  #50 (permalink)  
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Brakes on landing

Saw a Vulcan land at Goose with brakes on. - 8 tyres popped , and as team leader I was politely requested by the American controller "to get that ***** thing off the ***** runway else he'd do it with a bulldozer!
The teenage copilot who forgot to release the parking brake before landing and cannot be named because of data protection ,went on to become one of our best display pilots.
Wonder if he reads this stuff!
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Old 7th Jun 2010, 20:23
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EAA VC crash

Hi Colin,

Hope you are ok. Have been temporarily cut off emails due to a transfer after my patient's condition deteriorated. Right now I am borrowing someone's wireless laptop to send this message. will get in touch once reconnected. Hope you enjoy flying.
I miss the airline connections and career. It is a job not in comparison with any other. It was exciting and full of happy times.

bye for now, i have to go.

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Old 1st Jun 2012, 14:50
  #52 (permalink)  
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Addis crash

Some of the postings earlier suggest that this was a night-time take-off. That is wrong - it was daylight. I was on the viewing balcony as it set off for take-off, and my 12-yr old sister was on board.

Unfortunately, although she survived the crash, she was badly burned, and died a week later, after receiving wonderful care in the hospital in Addis, and by the RAF, who flew her and a number of others back to UK. She died on 25 April at RAF Halton Hospital.
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Old 1st Jun 2012, 22:21
  #53 (permalink)  
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Welcome to the forum. Very sorry to hear that you lost your sister in the accident at Addis Ababa.


Last edited by Planemike; 2nd Jun 2012 at 09:27.
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Old 2nd Jun 2012, 00:40
  #54 (permalink)  
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I too heard somewhere that it was some form of hook on the runway rather than a car jack, one report actually said it was a meat hook?
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Old 2nd Jun 2012, 07:13
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It was a jacking pad from a locally based Cessna 185, not a car jack or meat hook. See here for more about this accident: Incidents and Accidents

The accident occurred around 9:38 in the morning, at least that's the time noted in the accident report for the start of the take off.

Welcome to the forum ADMM!

Last edited by Jhieminga; 2nd Jun 2012 at 07:19.
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Old 3rd Jun 2012, 11:14
  #56 (permalink)  
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The multi failure of some of the brakes during the rejected take off was rotten luck for all those involved. Most landings in airline aircraft do not involve maximum brake application and thus the defects present at the time of the VC 10 accident would not have been apparent. In fact it is quite possible to go from servicing schedule to servicing schedule without ever realising one or two of a multiple wheel/brake system may be dodgy. Unless of course a high speed abort on a limiting runway just happens to occur - and then it is too late.

For example it happened to this writer many years ago; fortunately it was a happy ending:

I recall taking over a 737-200 of Air Nauru that had flown from Hong Kong Manila Guam. There was a crew change at Guam for sector Guam Ponape Nauru. During the walk around at Guam after the previous crew had left the aircraft for the pub, I noticed one of the four brake units appeared cold compared to the other three. The others were hardly warm as expected for a 10,000 ft runway so I thought little about it.

Ponape runway was relatively short. Landing and braking nothing unusual. Refuelled and did another walk around and again found one brake cold while the others were still warm. Pondered this although warm air from adjacent brake made it difficult to assess a possible problem. . Landing at Nauru I decided to use moderate braking and from experience knew that on arrival at the terminal the brakes would normally be quite hot since Nauru was a short runway. After pax disembarked I checked the brakes by waving my hand near them and discovered same single brake stone cold.

Wrote up the snag and engineer discovered that brake had been disconnected from the brake system. Must have happened during servicing at Hong Kong but not picked up by previous crew. Shows how important the walk around inspection is providing it is done with diligence. The danger was if a high speed abort was necessary when only three brakes would have worked.
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Old 3rd Jun 2012, 19:36
  #57 (permalink)  
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EAA VC 10 accident 1972 Addis Ababa in 1972


incidents and accidents

I have now read your update on EAA VC 10 accident in 1972.
I must say it is well written.
However, I would like to draw your attention to a Mr. Douglas Alan Johnson, who has emailed me at my private email address: [email protected]
He claimed he and his wife were survivors on that flight. I directed him to get in touch with PPRuNe but so far I have not seen his report at PPRuNe. Perhaps you may get in touch with whim at [email protected]
He might have an interesting story to tell us at PPRuNe. Currently he is residing at Uruguay unti 5th June 2012.
Over to you if you will
flyawaybird (Mary)
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Old 19th Feb 2013, 05:40
  #58 (permalink)  
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Still haunted by this crash... 41 years later...

My sincerest condolences to the individuals who shared their personal stories of loss associated with this crash. I went to boarding school in Addis and we saw the column of smoke from the crash rising in the distance. They posted newspaper articles in our dorm -- I guess thinking we might have family involved. Then, for some ill-conceived reason, the proctor of my dorm decided to take us out to see the wreckage. Absolutely horrifying and haunting. I swear I could feel the pain from people there -- luggage debris everywhere. I could barely breathe for years during take off, could never sit by a window, and we flew everywhere. Again -- my sincerest condolences to everyone who lost family and friends.
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Old 19th Feb 2013, 18:35
  #59 (permalink)  
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East African VC 10 accident in 1972 at Addis Ababa


Thank you for sharing of this famous VC 10 accident.
You are not the only one haunted, I am and hard come from London
on the same ill-fated A/C. I lost my best friend who I had only chatted on my arrival in NBO. Furthermore, as one of the airline staff, it was so sad to loose majority of the crew and pasengers, not to mention an airliner i loved so much.
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Old 22nd Aug 2014, 01:03
  #60 (permalink)  
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EAst African Airways 2014 Reunion in Skyways - London

Hi Folks,

FYI, we had a very memorable EAA Reunion in London on 26th July 2014 at former Skyways Hotel, now Radisson Blu Edwardian Heathrow Hotel.
For those that missed this great day, you can access East African Airways website to read all about it there and also find the information on video to watch.

The event was well organized, my hat off to the two pilot concerned, and it was very well attended from as far as, New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, USA and the list goes on. Not even the wild horses could have kept me away from the EAA Reunion. We had brought a lot of gifts on request, for auction. We raised quite a bit of money. Plenty to talk about, eat and drink (Tusker Beers, juu!). We also watched an interesting video partly on EAA and the rest on Kenya and Tanzania during the colonial rule, special events etc.. We had close to 130 attendees present, considering a lot of EASTAF have passed on. My trip continued on eight-days tour to Germany. Very interesting. I really enjoyed myself.

Just a piece of information those interested in the former airline.


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