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Flash Airlines B737 Crash in Egypt

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Flash Airlines B737 Crash in Egypt

Old 4th Jan 2004, 04:32
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Exclamation

ATC Watcher

As to the " speculators " here , please wait a bit, you look like journalists expecting sensational news.
then:

For what we know so far , if indeed it is correct, it could be many things , even something very simple, like multiple bird stike on both engines for instance....
Pity you do not heed your own advice...

Condolences to all involved in this tragic event, positioning crew too... so sad.

I would be more interested in what Boeing make of this, anyone know the official line...?
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Old 4th Jan 2004, 06:20
  #42 (permalink)  
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Condolences to all involved in what looks like a very miserable event indeed. Normally, I'd add "and there's no point in speculating before some more information is in." (well, normally I wouldn't say anything).

However, I think there is a valid and immediate concern over the way the Egyptian authorities reacted. Either they have some solid information about a catastrophic failure in this most popular aircraft which they are not making known as widely as they could, or they are so desperate to make people think it can't be terrorism that they are prepared to massively distort their proper role in sorting out what happened.

Perhaps there's a third option I've missed?

R
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Old 4th Jan 2004, 06:36
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My condolencies to all the relatives of those who died.

EBU: (translation from French)

The Egyptian air company Air flash was not allowed to land or to fly over Swiss territory ever since October 2002. This step was taken after some spot tests by the Swiss Federal Aviation office at Ziurich-Kloten airport. Air flash failed security standards due to important technical faults. The Swiss Federal Aviation office put this report in the Europaen Civil Aviation database
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Old 4th Jan 2004, 06:55
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The response from the Egyptian authorities is typical Arab, and is exactly what was said when the Egypt Air B767 went in. Easier to blame the aircraft manufactured by a non-Arab country then the Arab crew. It's all about face saving. Don't read too much into it.
However, as for the Egypt Air B767 accident, the general public may never know the full story.
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Old 4th Jan 2004, 07:10
  #45 (permalink)  
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Some news reports have the aircraft "returning" to Sharm El Sheikh airport as a consequence of encountering a problem after take-off:

1) Take-off was apparently made in a southerly direction, destination being Paris CDG with a stop at Cairo for re-fuelling and disembarking crew, the "return" in direction would have been normal.

2) No Mayday or other communication indicating a problem was apparently made to ATC before the aircraft crashed.

3) Would any abnormal engine event or the breakup of the aircraft on hitting the sea be sufficient to account for:

A local hotellier Richard Bonneville, whose hotel is situated about 10-12km from the crash area, related that between 4.45 and 5am," they heard a very loud explosion which shook all the windows". It was only later at about 7am that they heard that there had been an air crash. (reported on FR2, Sat 03/01/2004, French national TV)
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Old 4th Jan 2004, 07:19
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What makes me really sick is the fact that a cause has already been established ( it certainly sounds that way ) , yet this tragedy has only just occured.

With no flight recorder , no real witness reports , no mayday call/ radar contact .

3 scenarios always come to mind when something like this happens .

A) pilot error
B) technical error
C) third party involvement

as stated taking of over water at night is a harsh place to be if ur engine fails , rudder locks up , you not the most confident pilot or if someone has a large sam pointed in ur direction.

from a local news article here in New Zealand

The last major crash by an Egyptian plane took place in May 2002, when a Boeing 767 of the state airline EgyptAir crashed near Tunis airport, killing 15 people.

In October 1999, an EgyptAir Boeing 767 dived into the sea off Nantucket, Massachusetts, killing all 217 people on board.

my condolences to everyone involved directly or indirectly by this terrible tragedy, God Bless
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Old 4th Jan 2004, 08:33
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I wouldn't trust anything the Egyptian authorities say as they still claim the Egyptair crash was due to technical failure even though the F/O shutdown both engines and dived the aircraft into the sea. How can they claim its technical failure if they don't have the black box etc. How can they rule out a whole number of other possibilities. At least the French are involved so hopefully we'll get two sides to it.
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Old 4th Jan 2004, 08:46
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Fact: One Flash 737 was very recently in Athens, in Olympic Airways hangar on (what seamed) powerplant maintenance (I saw a picture of it, cowls fully open)

Allegedly: It was the same aircraft with the ill fated one

Allegedly: Diverted there with engine problem

Allegedly: Had an engine changed, the “new” engine was sent over from Egypt.

I type the words carefully so I will not get misunderstood (very common in pprune).

I saw all these on a European TV network late tonight (Saturday). I rarely believe what I hear on TV, but the picture was there, and all the rest that I mention above is what they reported, but since I do not believe everything, I use the word “allegedly”. They did not. They reported it as a fact.
The reason for this post is to hear from anybody who knows anything more about it. I wish not to point any fingers, and not to accuse Olympic of course. We could though get an idea of Flash’s maintenance issues in the recent past. Especially if the aircraft was the same one
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Old 4th Jan 2004, 09:14
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IBMN
=============
EBU: (translation from French)

........ This step was taken after some spot tests by the Swiss Federal Aviation office at Ziurich-Kloten airport. Air flash failed security standards due to important technical faults. ........
=============
I suspect that this is the common mistranslation of the French word "surete" [safety] as "security". My guess is that the Swiss found safety problems, not security problems.

There is a common tendency to just transliterate "important", which looks like an English word - but can have other meanings in French. It might better be translated as "significant".

So: "Air Flash failed safety standards due to significant technical faults".

SC
"No nit left unpicked"
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Old 4th Jan 2004, 09:35
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maybe it was Capt. Battoutti (co-joe on the ill fated egyptair 767) ?? they blamed him once, hell these days they'll blame it on him as well.
ODGUY, I don't think this is the time and place to be sarcastic. Many peole lost their lives and for the sake of this shaken industry and our lives and jobs we should no contribute with stupid remarks to further deterioration.
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Old 4th Jan 2004, 12:13
  #51 (permalink)  
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From this morning’s paper:
“It emerged yesterday that one woman passenger – Fatima --- (it gives the name), 47 – made two phone calls to her nephew. The first said there was a problem during taxiing before takeoff. The second, as it was crashing, described another problem during the brief flight. Mohamed ----, of Moroccan origin, said: “She said: ‘Something’s happening to the flight.’ Then there were screams from the air hostess standing next to her and the line cut.”
I have two separate reactions to reading something like this on page one of a usually reputable newspaper. Firstly, the story is so obviously inaccurate – almost certainly a story made up on the fly because the ‘ear witness’ had a microphone thrust in front of his nose, (let’s be charitable - possibly while he was in a state of high emotion). But secondly, has it occurred to anyone that if Mohamed ----’s story is true, the reason for the crash might be the fact that his dead aunt was using her mobile phone during takeoff?

I flew on a domestic flight in Egypt some years ago (not with the company concerned in this tragic accident). Late in the approach into Cairo, passing 1500’ at my guess, I was gob-smacked at the number of people sitting around me who pulled out their trusty mobile phones to tell their wives/drivers their ETA. As for the seemingly ridiculous statement from Mohamed --- that there ‘were screams from the air hostess standing next to’ his aunt immediately after takeoff, maybe that’s not quite as silly as it first sounds, for on the same flight I took, we commenced the takeoff with a flight attendant standing in the aisle at Row 11 taking photographs of a honeymooning couple. When she realised the aircraft was taking off, she made a run for her seat at the forward door. She was on all fours ‘climbing’ uphill, with the aircraft airborne and the floor at around 15 degrees nose up, by the time she was dragged into her seat by her colleague.
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Old 4th Jan 2004, 16:14
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A lot of good points have being written so far.

What must be going on now is a frantic search of the CVR and DFDR by the Egyptian authorities to get there first. Why? Simply so they can tell the world whatever official version they already have.

A good model of how the Egyptians will deal with this tragedy is the way they dealt with their 767 accident. Even though the NTSB proved black on white that El Batouti(the F/O) was directly responsible for the crash, the Egyptians refused to see the truth and continued their propaganda.

Moral of the story: You cannot, ever, trust whatever Arab officials say. Period!The fact that the French DGAC is getting involved is not going to change anything. Actually they might turn it into an anti American thing by "proving" that the 737 has a history of problems and that airlines should buy Airbus.
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Old 4th Jan 2004, 17:26
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Egyptian aviation authority and black box

Then it seems clear that even if the French will get involved into this investigation, they would not be able to effectively dispute the Egyptian intepretation of facts, especially as the investigators operate on Egyptian territory, even if the "French" investigation would prove that this incident was caused by a pilot error or terrorism.
This "cultural" difference in handling these delicate events it is something we should all consider in order to achieve an impartial judgement and fair investigation.
I doubt we will never know the truth, unless the French and Boeing will get full access to all the evidence.
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Old 4th Jan 2004, 17:26
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Banning an airline from flying into your country, as it appears the Swiss had done in this case, sounds to me like a serious step to take. I would have expected that most other countries would want to follow suit pretty darn quickly - or could it just be the result of a 'minor' technical breach of Swiss regulations?
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Old 4th Jan 2004, 17:38
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Folks,

here in Switzerland, we have gotten some rather disturbing reports about Flash Air.

One of their planes was checked in a routine inspection by the Swiss Federal Office of Civil Aviation. The result was banning Flash Air not only from landing in Switzerland but also from overflights. In my experience, this is a very drastic step and would not be done without reason.

Press reports, to be taken with caution, but I personally believe them accurate in this case, list a few of the deficiencies:

-"several instruments in the flight deck being unserviceable"
- Flight Crew (Cockpit) Oxygen Masks missing
- Emergency Oxygen Bottles missing
- Emergency Exit lights unservicable
- Quite a few life jackets missing
- Passenger Seatbelts partly unserviceable or broken.

These were the ones seen from the cabin side.

Again, I have never heard of any airline being banned from Switzerland, I may be wrong here, but this is a quite good indication that this companies safety standards left a lot to be desired.

In that context, and it may be safely assumed that the Egyptian Authorities were informed about this ban, it is not so much off for them to suspect an accident first and foremost. The Question of course remains why a company like that is allowed to operate?

Best regards
AN2 Driver
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Old 4th Jan 2004, 18:29
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Hmmmmm... As I understand the trend of discussion so far, it looks like
a/ There must have been a profound mechanical failure because Flash have had really serious problems affecting controllability such as pax seat belts and crew smoke hoods. I have known several transport aircraft to plunge uncontrolled into the scenery simply because of a missing pax seat belt.

b/ Flash is run by members of the Arab race and therefore nothing they say may be taken seriously. It might be worth remembering that Emirates is possibly run by Arabs too. Oh, and Valujet was not.

c/The French will not have access to any proper information but they will try to blame Boeing. Quite right too. Airbus never attempt silly non-aviation things like tree cutting do they.

I really must stop acting like Victor Meldrew.

Cheers

Trux.
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Old 4th Jan 2004, 18:38
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condolences to the families of all who have perished.

Can a statement that it was an accident be made with any degree of accuracy so early after the crash?
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Old 4th Jan 2004, 18:54
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In listening to the reports it seems to me very odd that there should be lots of people who saw this when it was 4.45am in the morning.

Sunrise in Cairo is around 0650 Local so they would have done well to see it crash let alone assess what state the aircraft was in.

There also seem to be very few factual details. ie: What time was takeoff, what time did it crash, what was the heading/altitude etc.

Not suprised at the Egyptian's discounting terrorism. Having worked in Cairo for a year it is fairly typical for them to answer "factually" with what they want the answer to be rather than what it is or could be.
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Old 4th Jan 2004, 19:08
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The take-off was from RWY 04R. The "return to the airport" as mentioned is part of a normal departure back over the VOR, to gain altitude and clear mountains NW of the airfield. Last mode C reading seemes to have been 4800`. No distress call has been made apparently. Everything from there is but speculation.
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Old 4th Jan 2004, 19:22
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Take off normaly 4R and then join the hold over the VOR, if you
cannot gain altitude enough, then leave above 10.300 MSA
enroute to the north-west. That was the procedure when I
was there. but how can You be then 6 Miles south of the Airport?
where they found some debris? And from 4.800 feet you have
enough to clear all obstacles south of HESH and usually You
stay visual as visibility is mostly severe CAVOK there......
After the CVR and FDR are recovered we will know more what
was the cause. According to information from a friend in HECA
a major part of the fuselage was located 3000 ft under the
sea level in the bottom of the red Sea.
Stand by for latest developments.
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