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A LOT of things I never knew about the Concorde crash.

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A LOT of things I never knew about the Concorde crash.

Old 20th Aug 2017, 01:23
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A LOT of things I never knew about the Concorde crash.

Folk not wanting to talk about planes - shut your eyes and stick yer fingers in yer ears.


Quite astonishing just how many factors contributed. I had no idea how close it came to the taxiing aircraft.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fqOcYhzWUZY


John goes on to further Tube excerpts told from Duxford. Great to hear from one of the very early skippers.
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Old 20th Aug 2017, 03:24
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It sounds like pushing the limits of this aircraft had become something of an everyday occurance, anything to avoid inconveniencing the VIP passengers. Clearly Concorde was a very forgiving and capable aircraft when everything was operating correctly, but such complacency in pushing the limits undoubtably contributed to the severity of the accident.

Had the fuel and baggage loading been correct and the engine not shut down, would the aircraft have been able to climb away, or would the burning fuel have destroyed other vital parts of the structure and flight controls? My own belief is that the aircraft would still have crashed before being able to land anywhere. A takeoff with the centre of gravity within limits would still have seen the aft limit exceeded as the fuel from the burst tank poured out. Maybe an extra minute or two flying time might have been gained, but a crash was inevitable.
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Old 20th Aug 2017, 06:42
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How long would it have taken them to get to Le Bourget? I know the crash site is closer to Le Bourget than the site of the TU144 crash.

I also saw a suggestion that the fire might have burned itself out if the aircraft kept flying, but I don't know how plausible that is.
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Old 20th Aug 2017, 09:00
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What an incredibly fascinating account of what lead up to the
accident. The holes in the cheese certainly lined up that day.
Thanks for posting Loose rivets.
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Old 20th Aug 2017, 11:48
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Amazing account, so different from the generally accepted view.
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Old 20th Aug 2017, 12:46
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I also saw a suggestion that the fire might have burned itself out if the aircraft kept flying, but I don't know how plausible that is.
..I wouldn't bet on it. I'm aware of one instance of an aircraft fuel tank fuel leak turning into a very spectacular fuel fire which kept burning until the aircraft hit the surface at around 300 knots several minutes later...( minus the crew I hasten to add). That fire didn't "blow" out or burn out and I can't see I can't see any obvious reason reason why the Concorde fire would have behaved any differently.
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Old 20th Aug 2017, 14:01
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Thanks LR.

Amazing, a great example of how a crew should NOT operate.
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Old 20th Aug 2017, 16:32
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Several years ago, the guest speaker on a cruise I was on gave an extremely popular series of talks on Concorde one of which covered this story and exactly the same points. His next talk covered the events which followed and which eventually brought about the end of Concorde. I suspect that the sales of French wine on the ship dropped significantly after that talk.

One of these events was the emergency diversion of a French Concorde into Halifax after losing fuel in No 3 engine. According to our speaker, the crew failed to turn off the fuel to that engine after shutting it down and then failed to notice that it was still losing fuel until it was nearly too late.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/ar...s-fate-165126/

BBC NEWS | World | Europe | Concorde in emergency landing
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Old 20th Aug 2017, 16:51
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Originally Posted by bedsted View Post
Amazing, a great example of how a crew should NOT operate.
The average PPL would not, I claim, knowingly take off over weight and with CofG outside limits and with a tail wind.


So there must have been more to it? Was it generally understood amongst Concorde pilots that it's fine, you can get away with these things, we do them most flights?
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Old 20th Aug 2017, 17:18
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Originally Posted by Gertrude the Wombat View Post
The average PPL would not, I claim, knowingly take off over weight and with CofG outside limits and with a tail wind.


So there must have been more to it? Was it generally understood amongst Concorde pilots that it's fine, you can get away with these things, we do them most flights?
You are missing the point I think.

From your comments, you clearly do not understand how a multi-crewed flight deck should operate.

Basically they should monitor each others actions.
Sadly this did not appear to be the case.


It can be legally possible to take off with a 10kt tailwind BTW.
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Old 20th Aug 2017, 17:55
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GtW,
As Hutchison surmised;
they were later (more than an hour?) than their scheduled take-off time due to a problem with one of the thrust reversers and the PAX had to catch a cruise ship in NY.
He made the descision that they needed to get off the ground right now, never a good idea.
Many holes in the swiss-cheese lined up and very poor descisions.
f
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Old 20th Aug 2017, 18:02
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Originally Posted by bedsted View Post
Basically they should monitor each others actions.
Sadly this did not appear to be the case.
That's basically what I'm asking - was it routine to behave like this? - if so one wouldn't expect the other crew to challenge the captain for doing what they did every day.
Originally Posted by bedsted View Post
It can be legally possible to take off with a 10kt tailwind BTW.
Sure, if you do the right sums, no problem at all[#]. But tailwind and overweight and out of balance as well?


[#] I was once waiting at Luton for my then-girlfriend now-wife to arrive on a loco flight. What she didn't know, and I did because I was listening to the radio, was that the pilot had been offered a straight-in with a tailwind or a circuit to the into-wind runway. He chose the tailwind (perfectly legally, within limits, I'm sure). So I knew before she did that she was in for a "firm" landing followed by heavy braking.
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Old 20th Aug 2017, 18:26
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The official accident report.

https://www.bea.aero/docspa/2000/f-s...-sc000725a.pdf
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Old 20th Aug 2017, 18:49
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Originally Posted by Gertrude the Wombat View Post
That's basically what I'm asking - was it routine to behave like this? - if so one wouldn't expect the other crew to challenge the captain for doing what they did every day.

Sure, if you do the right sums, no problem at all[#]. But tailwind and overweight and out of balance as well?


[#] I was once waiting at Luton for my then-girlfriend now-wife to arrive on a loco flight. What she didn't know, and I did because I was listening to the radio, was that the pilot had been offered a straight-in with a tailwind or a circuit to the into-wind runway. He chose the tailwind (perfectly legally, within limits, I'm sure). So I knew before she did that she was in for a "firm" landing followed by heavy braking.

I've flown with people who were difficult to challenge. One individual stands out, as he was brusque, intolerant of criticism, and consequently created an atmosphere on the flight deck that made it difficult for anyone in the RH seat to question anything. I well remember one incident, where we'd been cleared to climb out on a set heading to 18,000ft. We were on autopilot in the climb, and the guy in the LH seat had lit a cigar and was relaxing (smoking was allowed on the flight deck back then).

As we climbed through this altitude I started getting a bit concerned, but didn't know how best to raise the issue (I had no desire to be chewed out, yet again). In the end, at around 20,000ft, I decided to ask what altitude we'd been cleared to by Scottish Mil. The chap in the LH seat spluttered, leant forward and wound the height bug back, without saying a word about his f**k up.

This same chap had a habit of low flying whenever the opportunity arose. Often this was fun (I well remember flying along the Great Glen at a couple of hundred feet, and flying over Glentrool at around 50ft........), but years later he got into hot water for unauthorised low flying, and his solicitor asked me to give evidence as a character witness. Sadly I had to decline, as all I would have done was condemn his client had I been forced to tell the truth about his flying.
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Old 20th Aug 2017, 21:39
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A LOT of things I never knew about the Concorde crash.
Interesting hearing it from a former Concorde pilot, but did you really learn anything new from that?

Everything he talked about has been out for years.

S-D
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Old 20th Aug 2017, 21:43
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Originally Posted by Gertrude the Wombat View Post
[#] I was once waiting at Luton for my then-girlfriend now-wife to arrive on a loco flight. What she didn't know, and I did because I was listening to the radio, was that the pilot had been offered a straight-in with a tailwind or a circuit to the into-wind runway. He chose the tailwind (perfectly legally, within limits, I'm sure). So I knew before she did that she was in for a "firm" landing followed by heavy braking.
I can smell something.....
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Old 20th Aug 2017, 21:57
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Old 20th Aug 2017, 22:14
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[QUOTE=Dr Jekyll;9867175]How long would it have taken them to get to Le Bourget? I know the crash site is closer to Le Bourget than the site of the TU144 crash.

Heartbreakingly close. The crash site is no further from Le Bourget than the length of it's runway, maybe 3km. So about half a minute flying time.
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Old 20th Aug 2017, 22:18
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Gertrude - There is a set procedure, (drill), frequently practiced in the SIM, for engine fire/sever damage/separation and it involves all crew members and is initiated by the pilot flying, (in this case the captain), or it can be initiated by the captain if he immediately assumes control from a co-pilot who had been the flying pilot. I have never flown three crew with a Flight Engineer but I believe it is SOP in some companies for the FE and the FO to handle the emergency whilst the captain flies the aircraft. Each movement of the drill is called for, the call is repeated by another crew member and the action crossed checked by both crew members, before they are moved, to ensure the correct levers and switches are moved. I have never heard of a situation where an FE would shut down an engine without it first being called for and cross referenced with another crew member, unless the other crew were incapacitated.


A very sad event, we used to call such events, "being nibbled to death by ducks".
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Old 20th Aug 2017, 22:39
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Originally Posted by salad-dodger View Post
Interesting hearing it from a former Concorde pilot, but did you really learn anything new from that?

Everything he talked about has been out for years.

S-D
Hello. That there is "nothing new" is not the issue. The issue is one of perspective, and a too frequent "latch on" to a handy and seemingly sole source of trouble.

I suppose in another ten years time we will be blessed with a similar summary re another AF fatal. 447.
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