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MK Airlines B747 crash at Halifax

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MK Airlines B747 crash at Halifax

Old 14th Oct 2004, 12:40
  #21 (permalink)  
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Me thinks if it struck the tail and then would not climb that somehow she was improperly loaded.

NigelOnDraft - Does it say moderator under your name? Only then do you get to comment on what people post here.
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Old 14th Oct 2004, 12:52
  #22 (permalink)  
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Just to let you all know that MK are not based in Manston any more....!!!
They are based in OST.
This is the 4th Aircraft MK have lost
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Old 14th Oct 2004, 13:04
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Did they carry a loadmaster on this sector or was it dispatched?
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Old 14th Oct 2004, 13:07
  #24 (permalink)  

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The original link to cbc news at the beginning of this thread has been updated. It doesn't look good.

NoD had it right when it comes to copying and pasting news reports onto PPRuNe. Its much better to post a bit of info followed by the link.
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Old 14th Oct 2004, 13:47
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Frangible - Hull loss rate available here:

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Old 14th Oct 2004, 14:19
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Apparently 6 of the crew members were of Zimbabwean origin, the 7th member was from South Africa.

Heartfelt condolences to the families - a terrible tragedy!
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Old 14th Oct 2004, 14:30
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Having flown with all the Boys in the past - l shed many tears for them and wish them a "fambai zvakanaka".

Such a good bunch of tight guys - my sincere condolences to their families and to the rest of the MK fraternity.

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Old 14th Oct 2004, 15:25
  #28 (permalink)  
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Reports of tail strike on take off. Yet to be confirmed.
Tail located some distance from main wreckage adding credibility to tailstrike theory (apparently witnesses saw the takeoff run).
Swath cut through trees prior to impact.
Post crash fire.
No survivors.
7 crew members. Nationalities reported to be 6 Zimbabwe, 1 South Africa.
RCMP following up on report of two explosions in-flight prior to impact to cover 'sabatoge' theories however unlikely they may be.

More to follow,
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Old 14th Oct 2004, 15:49
  #29 (permalink)  
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All my condoleance to the familly of our friends.
Rest in peace.

Don't know what to say.

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Old 14th Oct 2004, 16:09
  #30 (permalink)  
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Some photos of the aircraft pre this accident show that a good part of the nose section had a paint job which appears much fresher than the rest of the fuselage.

Just out of interest, what was this due to?

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Old 14th Oct 2004, 16:35
  #31 (permalink)  
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Re the nose paint

My guess is that when it was bought from SAA, someone thought why bother re-painting that bit?

Not that relevant to the thread tho? RIP
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Old 14th Oct 2004, 16:49
  #32 (permalink)  
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Mike Tutton
Canadian Press
Thursday, October 14, 2004

HALIFAX -- The tail section of a loaded cargo jet snapped off before it crashed into woods at the end of a runway at Halifax International Airport early Thursday, killing all seven crew members on board.

"Our thoughts and our prayers go to the families of those killed in this tragedy,'' said Pat Chapman, a spokesman for the airport authority.

The tail of the Boeing 747, owned by MK Airlines Ltd. of Britain, lay in a field at the end of the runway, inside the fence surrounding the airport property.

"The aircraft basically didn't take off,'' said Steve Anderson, an airline spokesman in Sussex, England. "She continued her (takeoff run) and ran off the runway and ran into woods.''

There didn't appear to be casualities on the ground as there are no homes in the area.

The fuselage and wings of the aircraft cut a wide, V-shaped swath through woods and came to rest in pieces about a kilometre away.

"We've recovered some remains at the scene,'' said RCMP Const. Joe Taplin.

He said the RCMP were treating the crash as a potential criminal investigation after reports of an explosion. He didn't elaborate.

The tops of several trees and power poles were sheered off. The jet's severed wings lay in the brush, which was still burning in places several hours later. A mangled engine and a charred portion of fuselage lay nearby.

"It's very devastating,'' said Mike LeRue, a spokesman for Halifax firefighters, as he stood about 300 metres from the smouldering fuselage. "It's surreal, is what it is. It's reality, but it's surreal for sure.''

The Boeing 747-200, which was loaded with fuel for a flight to Spain, crashed shortly before 4 a.m. local time near an industrial park and quarry about 30 kilometres north of Halifax.

Pictures from the scene showed an orange glow in the pre-dawn sky. It took about 60 firefighters and 20 trucks about three hours to control a fire caused by burning jet fuel on the ground.

Meanwhile, the crash forced the airport to close for several hours, delaying or cancelling 17 flights. Power was temporarily knocked out, but flights resumed on one runway later in the morning.

The plane's crew are either from the United Kingdom, South Africa or Zimbabwe, Anderson said.

Aside from the usual three-person crew in the cockpit, the plane was also carrying a loadmaster and a spare crew.

The weather at the time of the crash was good with a partly cloudy sky and light winds.

The huge aircraft, which stopped in Halifax to refuel, was loaded with lawn tractors and 53,000 kilograms of lobster and fish bound for Zaragosa, Spain.

Witness Peter Lewis was dropping off his wife at the airport and saw two explosions.

"As we were approaching we saw what I thought was heat lightning,'' he told radio station CJCH. "That was only a quick one followed by a second one that was bigger. And then we saw a very bright orange light - and I mean bright. It took up the whole sky.''

The MK Airlines spokesman said the company had never had problems with this particular aircraft.

"She's been an absolute gem,'' Anderson said, noting the aircraft had been in service for about six years. He also said the company has been flying out of Halifax for the past 18 months.

The crash was the fourth for the cargo company in 12 years and the second involving fatalities. All three previous crashes were in Nigeria.

In 2001, one crew member was killed when a 747 went down about 700 metres short of the runway.

In 1996, a McDonnell Douglas DC-8F-55 struck trees during approach. There were no fatalities.

In 1992, a McDonnell Douglas DC-8 crashed and caught fire, also during final approach.

The information on the previous crashes is listed on a website for the Aviation Safety Network, an independent aviation safety watchdog.

The Transportation Safety Board of Canada has assembled a team of investigators in Ottawa. The board is an independent agency that investigates transportation accidents and prepares incident reports.

A TSB spokesman said the jet's flight date recorders had yet to be recovered.

The flight originated near Hartford, Conn., and the flight to Halifax was uneventful, Anderson said.

A pilot familiar with large planes said the tails of jets such as the 747 occasionally strike the ground during rotation - the point in the takeoff sequence when the pilot pulls back on the control stick, lifting the nose off the ground.

Large aircraft have so-called strike bars that protect the tail section when the pilot over-rotates and the tail strikes the runway.

"It doesn't happen that often,'' said the pilot, who didn't want his name used. "You can encounter turbulence right at rotation.''

While tail strikes are uncommon, pilots can recover from them, he said.

Anderson, the MK spokesman, confirmed the aircraft was in the process of rotating when it crashed.

In Ottawa, federal Transport Minister Jean Lapierre said "my thoughts are with the families of the people involved in this tragic accident.''

Bill Fowler, a TSB spokesman, said the downed jet was likely equipped with depleted uranium, a radioactive material often used as ballast in the rudders and wings of wide-body aircraft.

Depleted uranium is the dense, heavy waste produced during the making of nuclear fuel and weapons.

A 747 may contain as much as 1,500 kilograms of the material, which is denser than lead and 60 per cent as radioactive as natural uranium.

Fowler said "there is no threat or concern'' about exposure to those working on the wreckage.

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Old 14th Oct 2004, 17:08
  #33 (permalink)  
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To The Families and Friends

To all the families and friends. Our deepest sympathy and our thoughts are with you all. Words can not express our feelings.
Love from the Desert
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Old 14th Oct 2004, 17:40
  #34 (permalink)  
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Very,very sad day for aviation.

My thoughts at this time are with the families and friends, of the deceased.

I think it may be a little early to start pointing any fingers at MK.

Accidents have always happened and always will, because mankind is falable.
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Old 14th Oct 2004, 17:41
  #35 (permalink)  
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Red face

What a sad day.

I have spent many hours operating with some of the MK flight engineers on our b727 before they were retrenched by our
airline due to phasing out of the b727. I am dreading to here
the names involved as at this stage it still seems unreleased.
May the crew involved now be flying in a better place where
flight plans are no longer required.

my condolences to all at MK and all the families involved.
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Old 14th Oct 2004, 18:40
  #36 (permalink)  
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The BBC are reporting here that there is a video of the event.

The cause of the crash remains unconfirmed, but a Canadian air safety official told Reuters that a video of the accident appeared to show the plane's tail piece break off while the plane was still within the airport perimeter.
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Old 14th Oct 2004, 18:44
  #37 (permalink)  
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Anybody know who owns MK airlines?
Old 14th Oct 2004, 19:08
  #38 (permalink)  
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Apparently airline is owned by a consortium of European,Ghanaian and Zimbabwean investors. The airline grew at a remarkable rate in the late 1990's
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Old 14th Oct 2004, 19:09
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Michael Krueger?
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Old 14th Oct 2004, 19:28
  #40 (permalink)  
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No "e" i.e. : Mike Kruger - listed as M.D. of the company in the A-Z of Freighters and by all accounts a remarkable man who built an substantial airline from nothing so no doubt he has equity
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