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HKA Emergency Descent

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HKA Emergency Descent

Old 5th Nov 2013, 12:11
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HKA Emergency Descent

What was the story with Hong Kong Airlines today? Door light indication so they jumped into an emergency descent?

How do they still hold an AOC when critical post holders have left and no one has been nominated to replace them?



CAD should be ripping and tearing them.
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Old 5th Nov 2013, 13:38
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It was a question
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Old 5th Nov 2013, 13:50
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Hedo Rick It was a question
Don't insult Ppruners by being disingenuous!
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Old 5th Nov 2013, 15:10
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Emergency. Descent

Apparently it was an avionics bay door sensor fault which caused both packs to go offline. Hence the descent.
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Old 6th Nov 2013, 01:22
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...So they had a potentially dangerous indication, lost the packs and followed the adequate procedures.

How dare they?!

How bloody hard is it to crawl down to the cargo bay, confirm the door is secured and, on the way back up, stop at the E/E compartment to reprogram the computer and get the packs back?

...amateurs.
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Old 6th Nov 2013, 09:51
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Are you serious???

Errr, no, I think he joking sinking ship....ever heard of a sarcastic reply?
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Old 6th Nov 2013, 09:53
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Tongue in cheek old boy , but Hedo Rick what a pratt, questions don`t involved putting your miserly 2 cents worth
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Old 6th Nov 2013, 09:58
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ever heard of a sarcastic reply?
I chinese man, what's sarcasm? And a joke? So confusing, I don't get it
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Old 6th Nov 2013, 10:38
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Ok, so just taking notes, both packs are hooked up to a $5 door sensor... Ok, got it....
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Old 7th Nov 2013, 07:26
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Qeh?

So....the Avionics Bay door sensor, which is in no way is associated with the control of the Packs, knocks the Packs "offline"...? The Pack is an almost purely mechanical device that is controlled by 2 Pack controllers, which have 2 channels for redundancy and no input from a door sensor. I'd hazard a guess that they got an ECAM stating the Avionics door not closed, so decided to then make a precautionary Emergency Descent, or maybe a better term of rapid descent, I really don't know, but there is no way that that warning would affect either the Packs or the CPC's and so on.

And Hedo, some of the CAD fly as pilots with HKA as no other outfit would have these halfwits anywhere near an operating seat, so don't hold your breath for HKA to be shut down anytime soon.

Nosey
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Old 7th Nov 2013, 07:48
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Are the avionics doors not plug type, therefore if the door has failed it'll be blatantly obvious or it's a rigging / sensor problem so continue with normal ops.
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Old 7th Nov 2013, 08:06
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Avionics door

SMOC, correct, its an inward opening, ie, against the pressure, plug type, so correct again, likely an indication or sensor problem as it would be explosive otherwise.
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Old 7th Nov 2013, 09:49
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On ground the avionics door sensor will deactivate the packs. In the air only if abnormal V/S is observed is an emergency descent required to 10000ft/MEA.
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Old 7th Nov 2013, 10:50
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haha because I knew someone who did... been away from here for a while
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Old 7th Nov 2013, 12:47
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People, the only "facts" that are likely to make it to these pages on this matter are that HKA made an emergency descent. NoseGear's comment above sums up, most succinctly, why the likely outcome will be that nothing untoward went on whatsoever.
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Old 8th Nov 2013, 02:20
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In areas of cold weather Ops it's common enough to have the avionics door sensor malfunction due to icing. Especially after de-icing has been conducted. This event may or may not be cold related - but having seen it before I'd hesitate to crash dive. But that's just me. And we don't know what other contributory factors there may have been here.
Good point about the plug door - if there is no actual depressurization occurring there should be no reason to rush into an emergency descent.

I'd make one other comment here, and it's about training.
We go in the Sim and we're told 'ok, we're going to practice an Emergency Descent during the session'. Then, after some of the usual engine failure stuff (etc) we're 'rapid climbed' to FL350. Then you might get either of two scenarios - first, and explosive decompression (boom, whoosh) with obvious requirements, OR simply a bleed/ pack/ pressure controller problem combined with a 1,000fpm + cabin rate. In this second case there is the opportunity to attempt to control the cabin and sort out the problem. But, more often than not, since everybody knows this scenario is meant to lead to the desired Emergency Descent - the guy beside you will be on the blower declaring Mayday and putting his mask on without a seconds hesitation. Any attempt to slow this down is futile. Even the checker may ask WTF are you doing, descend!
Is this not negative training?
Does this not lead to this mindset that ALL pressurisation related problems require an immediate Emergency Descent?
In the old days, on my Boeing, a pack overheat/trip was common, and we simply reset it after cooling. Nowadays it's a trigger to think Emergency Descent.

Airbus 'standards' win out again over piloting skills and airmanship.

By the way - all these engine failures we practice in the Sim. How many of you have ever had an engine failure exactly like we practice? V1 cut, engine winds to zero and away you go. The V1 engine fail I had resulted in massive surging and cycling of thrust! 99.9% of all engine failures im personally familiar with have been nothing at all like the Sim. Think of that CX fuel thing out of Bali. But hey - the 'authorities' lay down the law, and we follow.
So much for 'training'.
(Well its not 'training' really, is it. Lets be honest. It's Checking).

Last edited by Killaroo; 8th Nov 2013 at 03:05.
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Old 9th Nov 2013, 02:09
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Without preempting an enquiry, the A330 FCOM is pretty clear. If the cabin pressure is stable there is no need for an Emergency Decent.



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Old 9th Nov 2013, 03:06
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Last month I heard KA making a precaution descent of only a few thousand feet, a problem with a door was mentioned to ATC, which had us scratching our heads as to which checklist has a precautionary descent of a few thousand feet?

This was in the HK FIR nearing the Taiwan FIR.

Last edited by SMOC; 9th Nov 2013 at 03:56.
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Old 9th Nov 2013, 03:28
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Question Try doing a "precautionary descent" in Chinese airspace

Have any of you ever tried to do a "precautionary descent" in Chinese airspace?

Good Luck!

Even with a Mandarin speaking translator sitting in the cockpit to aid in ATC coordination, it is next to impossible.

We had a delaminated/cracked windshield a few years ago that was getting worse so we wanted a lower altitude as a precaution and the controllers would not accept "we need a lower altitude for 'operational reasons'"

Or try getting a lower altitude in Chinese airspace because you need to burn some fuel to make your landing weight (higher than forecast tailwinds) without a translator.

Or try getting a lower altitude just to get out of continuous moderate turbulence in Chinese airspace.

Again, Good Luck!
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Old 9th Nov 2013, 07:49
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Originally Posted by SMOC
Last month I heard KA making a precaution descent of only a few thousand feet, a problem with a door was mentioned to ATC, which had us scratching our heads as to which checklist has a precautionary descent of a few thousand feet?This was in the HK FIR nearing the Taiwan FIR.
Probably he was referring to something called Airmanship. Sadly, it is something which many Airbus (all the way) Drivers haven't heard of.

You should try it sometime. It's awesome
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