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Turkish MD-83 Crash

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Turkish MD-83 Crash

Old 7th Dec 2007, 02:24
  #181 (permalink)  
 
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Unlit Mountainous Terrain

It would not surprise me if this accident has commonalities with the C-130 accident at Alert in 1991. In the Alert case, the Captain elected to bypass the NDB approach in favor of a visual approach. The runway was in sight but they impacted high terrain.

Some of the available photos for this accident show that the airport is visible from the crash site vicinity.

There's also the 2001 Gulfstream crash at Aspen where a ridge was struck on a visual final at night.

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Old 7th Dec 2007, 03:42
  #182 (permalink)  
 
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Mountain flying at night in nice weather...

well, in bad wx, you have to do an instrument approach and it usually works out.

but,

on those nice nights, perhaps moonlit, its easy to go for a shortcut.

I don't have my almanac handy, but was this tragedy on a night with a full moon? (visibility and not any werewolf jokes please)

remember, when you fly at night in mountains, you should see more and more lights if you are doing things right...less lights means climb like all get out.

I've flown very much in the western USA mountainous areas...and believe me...you better know where you are
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Old 7th Dec 2007, 05:56
  #183 (permalink)  
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Unlike Rainboe, I am interested in the information about the accident I can get from photographs and thank the people who are providing them and trying to interpret them.

I also don't necessarily go with the suggestion of leaving investigation to others, just as others would not necessarily go with the suggestion of leaving investigation to me.

I understand that some sensibilities might be adversely affected by some of the images, but consider that the official pictures as well as the reality will be far more unpleasant, and my sympathies go out mainly to those whose job it is to sift through and clean up the site as well as those who have lost family and friends. I don't really sympathise with the complaints of those who can choose to look or not to look at pictures on a public forum as they wish. The pictures we have seen are not prurient; they are informative to those of us who think about aircraft accidents.

Some observations from Machaca's astonishing collection.

There is, obviously, wreckage from the nose section, as well
as from the rear fuselage section. The piece of cockpit shell including window frames has been crumpled before the window by a longitudinal impact by something somewhat wider than a tree. And the main piece of fuselage/wing box has suffered a massive vertical impact, sufficient to crease the fuselage outwards on both sides and crease the roof downwards in the middle. Note also that the impact point on the hill as suggested by Milliyet is almost flat.

Descent angles of commercial jets under control are usually of the order of 3-6 degrees. If you strike a flattish hilltop at that angle, I doubt you are going to get a longitudinally crumpled and shattered nose and the middle fuselage creasing in on itself like that. And you are likely to get a trail somewhat longer than that apparent at the supposed initial impact point. I think I see three grooves at that point and it doesn't surprise me that some have said that the gear was down.

I agree that the supposition of someone cruising around on a visual descent below MSA and finding the air full of rocks has a certain simplicity. But the damage is still suggesting to me that he went in steep, and also apparently nose down, and that suggests further to me that control was already lost. But no one, least of all me, has any suggestion as to why that might have been.

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Old 7th Dec 2007, 07:05
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One of Pax...

Thanks for the "sehit" clarification. Yes an ILS might certainly helped prevent this tragedy. Most approach accidents happen on so called non precision approaches (VOR, NDB etc.)
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Old 7th Dec 2007, 07:17
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RAINBOW....

You sum it all up.

....all that matters are the events (and everything else ) leading up to the first contact, and why.
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Old 7th Dec 2007, 07:42
  #186 (permalink)  
 
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A ILS just might have prevented this accident, or it might not. A Non Precision Approach is not necesseraly unsafer than a ILS. Such a argument is misleading but unfortunately often picked up by chief pilots, therefore gaining momentum. Many operators ban NPA's if PA's are available and by doing that take away training and skill for the day when there is no alternative. With no training, logically more accidents loome. Now what was here first, the chicken or the egg?
In my humble opinion this comes as a cover up of the deteriorating quality of pilots. Not the basic human potential around the world, but from bad selection, lack of training and even worse leadership, all in the name of cutting costs up to a litterarly cynical stage. The call for ever increasing aids on ground or on board, for even greater automatism is only a consequence of a lack of skill and airmenship of pilots. Again, it's not their fault.
Back to the question: If you really want to install ILS in most places, you should at the same time ban all NPA's, because not allowed to train them and decreasing possibilities to actually fly them, means a increased danger potential once forced to execute them.
But then you should ban every car without ESP, because the bloke driving a such at home and occasionally hiring a different brand without, will definitely screw up when he gets in trouble in a curve.

I am personally all for increased training, even down the route with good WX conditions. NPA's should be a routine approach with a minimum required number , just as autoland approaches.
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Old 7th Dec 2007, 08:14
  #187 (permalink)  
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Rainboe, Checkmate 707;

....all that matters are the events (and everything else ) leading up to the first contact, and why.
Agreed and that is the most valuable area of learning-for-prevention, but I offer this: While I can comprehend a level of intolerance for prurient interest, (recognizing that it is always there and this remains an accessible forum for anyone), let us set aside the non-professional opinions and inexperienced speculation for the nonce and recognize that examination of photographs by professionals (flying and non-flying) and/or experienced/trained AIs of wreckage distribution and condition can nevertheless reveal something about antecedents. I haven't read all posts but have absorbed the provided photographs over time. I think they are helpful in determining some basic notions which may carry us beyond idle and inexperienced or, as you observe, prurient speculation, although by no means can we come to know the critical "why" - that is for the DFDR/CVR to reveal. At the very least, we might know a bit about angle/rate of descent, speed, likely configuration and heading as well as pitch and roll attitudes and thereby know regimes of flight etc. I fully realize that DFDR information, providing it was working and was reliable, may determine this as well, but this is a forum, not an AIB or a read-out center and speculation is both natural and beyond anyone's control. By the main fuselage section's damage and surround with relatively little disturbance, I had come to a tentative conclusion that the aircraft had been in a flat descent, possibly stalled. As they became available however, the photographs may tell us a different story. We know they show a short section of the tail in which it may be seen has some deformation upwards at the forward break and a substantial section of the fuselage forward of the wing box separated, leaving the wing-box section on which it may be seen shows some downward deformation at the forward separation point. For most here, until today the location and condition of the forward fuselage has been in some question. In short, at initial impact where the marks are on the hill, (which show deep gouges likely from the extended gear and the flap canoes as well as the rear fuselage), quite possibly the tail section separated upwards and the forward fuselage separated downwards both immediately while the remaining fuselage section with wings "flew" a short distance before an almost-vertical, flat descent. The photographs provided today answer the question of what may have happened to the forward fuselage and may therefore establish that the aircraft was under control at the time of initial impact. Whether there was a rapid pitch-up movement prior to impact or whether the terrain was rising and the aircraft was in a gentle descent or whether the descent rate was high remains to be settled by the DFDR. I know information has been posted in re an EGPWS installation but we don't know officially whether it was and whether it was functioning. Why they were where they were cannot be answered by any wreckage or speculation. Hopefully the recorders and any radar tracks plus any non-volatile chip memories (if installed - I don't know what equipment was on board), will answer these vital questions.

Last edited by PJ2; 7th Dec 2007 at 08:29.
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Old 7th Dec 2007, 09:25
  #188 (permalink)  
 
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Yeah it's gruesome, and some of it's uncalled-for. But if you're going to speculate about what happened beforehand, you need to go on the evidence that there is. PBL would like to leave open the possibility that the aircraft was not in controlled flight. In order to do so, he needs to discuss the evidence for this. The only evidence that he has to go on is the physical wreckage.

CFIT has historical precedent (NPAs, Night and CFIT go together), matches the location (loss of control is indiscriminate of high and low ground, CFIT prefers high ground), and corresponds to what we know of the radio traffic (often there's a radio transmission after loss of control; CFIT doesn't usually give so much warning). Conclude CFIT, and then you can go about speculating what institutional, procedural and airmanship factors went in to producing it, and from there you can take your lessons, if there are any.

Fortunately for our world, and unfortunately for this thread — for this is one of the things that attracts crackpots, conspiracy theorists, aetiologists and ghouls to the subject — a transport plane crash is a very rare occurrence, and likely causes for an unlikely event can turn out not to be the case. Alternatively, vested interests can and do manufacture "likely causes" that aren't likely, or that are insufficient.

The state of the wreckage tells the story. Yes, I have a natural bias against archaeology: I think archaeologists waste too much time finding out too little information. And there's such a mess, it's hard if not impossible to make a conclusive statement about what was going on. Yet it's needed. Chasing after engines" may seem ghoulish, but if those engines were turning at the moment of impact, they are going to look very different from how the would appear if they had already stopped.

So, assume that the aircraft did hit hard with a positive AoA (CFIT while descending), what would we see? A big aircraft-shaped divot on at the point of impact. The structure would fail both in front of the wing box, and between the wing box and tail. The front part would continue forward. The tail would go downwards (and tumble), and the wing section would go upwards. (as in Sioux City)

I wouldn't rule out PBL's possibility, but I don't think there's any evidence that points to it as more likely.

Now, sorry for the interruption, please continue.
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Old 7th Dec 2007, 11:39
  #189 (permalink)  
 
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Short cut on approach?

Way back at Post #24 there was a short transcript of RT communications:

Kaptan Pilot: Isparta Kule, iyi geceler. (Tower, good evening)
Isparta Kule: İyi geceler, devam edin. (Good evening, continue...)
Kaptan Pilot: Atlasjet KK 4203, Isparta VOR üzeri. (KK 4203 overhead Isparta VOR)
Isparta Kule: Anlaşıldı. In-bound oluş ikaz. (Roger, report in-bound)
SAAT (Time) 01.36
Kaptan Pilot: Isparta kule, in-bound olduk
(Tower, established in-bound)
Isparta Kule: Anlaşıldı Atlasjet. Yaklaşmaya devam edin.
(Roger, Atlasjet. Continue approach
)

Now, the transcript may be completely wrong and in this case does not give any clues.

But if the transcript contains the true messages, the airplane spent 18 minutes to get inbound after passing overhead Isparta VOR at an unknown altitude. This only makes sense if it was holding somewhere in between for unknown reasons (which might be missing in the 'transcript') or had an awfull lot of altitude to shed. But one can rule out a shortcut (as other posts suggested): that would not lead over the VOR and then take 18 minutes! Furthermore, the aircraft reported "established" in the last communication which also means the crew believed or was indeed aligned with the runway, not seven miles off track. If they were still far too high inbound and made a wide 360 left, they would have hit the hill in the opposite direction. So either the transcript is rubbish or the mystery widens. Even on a non precision approach, you cannot miss the inbound track by seven miles after passing the destination VOR correctly unless something goes wrong in the big way.
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Old 7th Dec 2007, 12:02
  #190 (permalink)  
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ctc,

do we know definitively that they were still IFR? If they were, and not on a contact approach, then the approach was seriously screwed up. If they were on a contact approach, or had cancelled for a visual, then we are back to not knowing what was up.

(I am assuming that Turkish regs have a similar distinction between contact and visual approaches to that in the U.S.)

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Old 7th Dec 2007, 12:46
  #191 (permalink)  
 
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Having visited multiple web-sites didscussing crashes I can tell you that there is nothing unique about the discussions on this web site.
Rather than just absorbing all the information from jounalists or in some cases waiting years for a final report the aviation curious among us start asking questions early on before making up their minds about the well being of their favorite interest.

To most of us there are little verifieable facts so there is a great tendancy to extrapolate from minute and fuzzy evidence to as far as our postulations will take us. The difference being in just how far will some of us go.
In the latter question the answer seems to have a great deal to do with the variations in persons among us. I hesitate to identify good or bad personal characteristis in discussion boards, but it's pretty easy to identify clashes between these personality types.

Given the discussion rules I see no way to forestall the clashes between the types of posters. There will always be type persons who questions every minute detail even among actual investigators on-site. There will be yet another person who picks at seemingly unimportant nits of information and extrapolates these far beyond the available evidence at the time to see if they might be missing the big picture. And still there are the types that become fixated on a cause du jour in proving their point while disparaging the other types.

To me all are acceptable as long as they operate within an acceptable framework which is an organized investigation, analysis, and reasonable recommendations for prevention without blame.
From a personal experience standpoint I will admit that the reason that I first started visiting some of these discussion boards a decade ago was to make sure that my investigations covered enough bases to be able to refute or confirm some of what I read on these boards.
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Old 7th Dec 2007, 13:26
  #192 (permalink)  
 
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PBL:
do we know definitively that they were still IFR?
No, we do not. But does it really matter? If you have to do the approach in the middle of the night over a mountainous area sparsely lit, I think you would rather follow the IFR procedure anyway at least as a general pattern or then make sure you stay over the lake that leads to the airport while descending. At least as long as you do not want to provide scenic moonlight sightseeing while waiting for some other aircraft to land or clear an obstructed runway. So night VFR alone does not account for the 18 minutes spent after passing the VOR outbound neither and meandering 7 miles off long finals.
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Old 7th Dec 2007, 13:43
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Just for the sake of being correct, JAR 25 you don´t cancel IFR, a visual approach is part of the original flight plan, you just take some responsibilities as active crew yourself. (terrain, traffic..)
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Old 7th Dec 2007, 16:07
  #194 (permalink)  
 
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the idiots have chased out the professionals [...] a bunch of self appointed amateur investigators ghoulishly turning over what evidence they can get from grainy phone cameras [...] The only lessons to come out of this accident will be for the professionals to find ways of it not recurring, not for ghouls to go photographing the cockpit and hunting the engines. A foolish and perverted obsession with some of you.
Rainboe,

What an insulting post. As a journalist by profession, I have had 12 years of sheer pleasure being an aviation webmaster in my spare time, communicating mainly with professionals like you and, indeed, listening and learning from what experienced airmen and -women have to say to each other. I may be an idiot, but I, like many of my fellow amateur imbecils in here, certainly understand when to lean back and see the pros doing their job or offering their opinions.

If were are to discuss this crash at all, you pilots could long time ago have pulled out your Jeppesens, (1) posted the Isparta approach plates (2) told us what you know to be the most common ATC procedures around this airport and (3) what the default flight plan for this flight might have been. None of that is speculation; it's information.

(The likely correct answer is YAA A16 EKSEN, which normally leads up to STAR from the east; if cleared for DCT IPT VOR early, they would have entered Isparta TMA on a hdg of 155 or more).

Instead you pros are wasting precious oxygen by speculating which is worse in general, an amateur on PPrune or a Turk, and whether the deceased Turkish ex-general in the right seat of the MD-80 had paid for his rating himself or not, which is just as speculative as whether the MD hit that hill nose or tail first.

Also it would also be appreciated if you pros would sift through the thread in general before hitting the radio switch and offering your opinion, just like it was something you'd have to read back on the frequency within a split second, and which already been expressed by someone else.
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Old 7th Dec 2007, 16:27
  #195 (permalink)  
 
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@Rainboe

In generell terms I don't like how you get along with PPRuNe users at all, but I must admit that I fully agree with your last post.
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Old 7th Dec 2007, 17:40
  #196 (permalink)  
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ctc,
Originally Posted by clearedtocross
[PBL] do we know definitively that they were still IFR?
No, we do not. But does it really matter? .... I think you would rather follow the IFR procedure anyway .......
Well, *I* would, but then I wouldn't think I'd get 45° off course on what is after all a relatively straightforward VOR approach (sorry, VOR DME but then I always regarded a DME as cheating ). I think when explaining mysteries one cannot infer things from what people would "normally" do, for it ain't normal when you hit a mountain 45° off course.

repulo,

I am probably not using the right terminology. For me, a contact approach is an IFR procedure and a visual approach a VFR procedure. Ipso facto you can't do a visual without cancelling IFR, and as a commercial scheduled operation you couldn't do that.

And for the rest of us, if hetfield's agreeing with Rainboe we know we're doing OK

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Old 7th Dec 2007, 19:40
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And for the rest of us, if hetfield's agreeing with Rainboe we know we're doing OK
Thank you for that, PBL!

You are certainly right, it is weird that they went off course that far and they were away unaccounted for a long time. I still suspect that the ATC transcript is a fake, because the time gap just does not make any sense.

I once had a strange GPS malfunction over Croatia which showed me far out in the adriatic sea and at a ridiculous ground speed. Now I know that this is not exactly in the vinicity of the crash site, but maybe they did some sort of GPS approach which went wrong for some unkown reasons. I dont know if the plane was GPS equipped but the pro's can enlighten us on this. Pure speculation, but that's what this thread is for.

And then more than a decade ago there was an Alitalia DC-9 that hit a hill on approach to Zurich, mainly because the captains glide path receiver was u/s and the crew did not make any cross checks relating to there position after the ILS receiver comparator alarm was flagged (the copi unit was okay).

So maybe in this case they had a NAV equipment failure which went by unnoticed. Then they fly the DME arc but get no interception to the inbound track. Until it's too late.
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Old 7th Dec 2007, 19:49
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http://www.flightglobal.com/articles...recorders.html

Germany's BFU expected to analyse crashed MD-83 recorders
By David Kaminski-Morrow

Flight recorders from the Atlasjet Boeing MD-83 which crashed while preparing to land at Isparta Airport in Turkey are expected to be sent to the German accident investigation agency BFU for analysis.

Early findings from the inquiry released by the Turkish transport ministry have revealed little new information about the 30 November accident. It states that there was no radio communication problem and air traffic control has a clear record of the transmissions.

“The crew did not declare any technical problem to the tower,” the ministry adds. Both Pratt & Whitney JT8D engines were operating normally and the landing-gear had been deployed.

Flight KK4203 from Istanbul struck high terrain about 7nm (13km) west of the airport. Isparta has a single runway, designated 05/23, which is not equipped with an instrument landing system.

All navigation equipment at Isparta Airport was calibrated and functioning properly. Meteorological information in use at the time of the accident has been verified as correct and there were no weather-related difficulties.

There is no indication of in-flight fire and no evidence of sabotage, says the ministry. Turkish police are carrying out routine alcohol and drug tests.

Representatives of Germany’s BFU are to meet with Turkish counterparts in the next few days and a source familiar with the situation says that the two sides are to discuss co-operation on the investigation. He indicates that this will include BFU analysis of the cockpit-voice and flight-data recorders.

All 57 occupants of the MD-83 were killed in the accident. The Turkish transport ministry revised its original casualty figures upwards, to 50 passengers and seven crew members, after discovering a child had been omitted from the original
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Old 7th Dec 2007, 20:47
  #199 (permalink)  
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ctc,

Originally Posted by clearedtocross
Then they fly the DME arc but get no interception to the inbound track.
It doesn't look like a DME arc to me, but rather a procedure turn at 12 DME after extending the outbound leg of the holding pattern at the VOR.

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Old 7th Dec 2007, 23:38
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I wonder if it is similar to this crash:

20 December 1995; American Airlines 757; near Buga, Colombia: The aircraft crashed into Mt. San Jose at night at about the 9,000 foot level while descending into Cali, Colombia after its flight from Miami. All 8 crew and 155 of the 159 passengers were killed in the crash. Colombian civil aviation authorities report that at the time of the accident, all navigational beacons were fully serviceable and that the aircraft voice and data recorders did not indicate any aircraft problems.
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