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SAA B737-700 hits catering truck (video)

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SAA B737-700 hits catering truck (video)

Old 3rd Jan 2008, 14:03
  #21 (permalink)  
 
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Was the aircraft being marshalled in?
Probably wouldn't matter much. Since I moved to the United States I've reached the conclusion that good marshalling is pretty much a dead art, both from the point of view of the pilot and the marshaller.

When I was a teenager I spent a lot of time at the airport and was suitably impressed at how a guy on the ground with a couple of table tennis bats could send a 727 dancing all over the tarmac and have it end up right where he wanted it because the pilot followed the instruction given by the marshaller.

These days here in the states it seems that as soon as you wave anything at a pilot they make a beeline for you where ever you happen to be located.

A signal to move straight ahead means just that, move straight ahead from the cockpit perspective in it's present direction, it doesn't mean come straight at me without passing go! When I want you to turn I will tell you.

Marshallers also need a kick in the arse, there was one I used to see on a regular basis who would keep his thumbs tucked through his pants belt loops so his entire range of motion for baton waving was limited to wrist movement, right up until it was time to stop the aircraft.

Sigh, it's so hard to find good help these days.
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Old 3rd Jan 2008, 16:35
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True, its been a dying art since taken over by the handling agents in our neck of the woods. Turn over of staff seems to dilute the skills. This in turn dilutes the ability of pilots to follow a good marshaller. It's a vicious circle that needs to be broken to ensure the safety of the A/C on the ground. However, thats for another thread maybe.....
Suppose the reasons for this accident will come out soon enough.
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Old 4th Jan 2008, 06:32
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The plane should not have been anywhere near the truck. The wing-tip should never have gone over the red line never mind the parking bay line. Should there be extraordinary circumstances meaning it was unavoidable then a wing man should have been provided.
The catering truck under any circumstances was not the cause of the accident.
What do you think the red demarcation lines are for? They denote the edge of the taxiway/stand.
There was certainly no need for your childish 'Whatever' comment.
I'm sorry to burst your bubble, but ICAO Annex 14 (which prescribes all airport markings) does not mention red lines at all. Taxiway edge markers are stepped yellow lines and nothing precludes the wing from extending over the edge markers. It is there to keep the wheels from exceeding the LCN of the taxiway edge.

It has become an unofficial standard to mark the limits for parking ground equipment with red lines. This is not ICAO and also means nothing to aircraft. At some airports the stand limits are also marked with red lines. This is also non-ICAO and again you are allowed to cross the red line.

BTW, in this specific case, the aircraft was being marshalled and the geography of the bay is such that the only way to enter the bay is to taxi as the -800 did. I agree that a wing walker would have been prudent, but as mentioned before, very few posters on this forum operate in Africa and you would not really have an idea about the difficulties involved in operating a large aircraft into Lusaka.

Just to be perfectly clear. In ICAO Annex 14, yellow lines govern the movement and limits of movement of aircraft and white lines (except on the runway) are there for vehicles. Only two countries have filed exceptions to Annex 14 Para 5.2.1.5: Austria and France.

Austria:
Additional markings are on aprons, i.e. white for service roads (passenger and service vehicles) and red for
parking areas of service vehicles and ramp equipment, orange for limit of apron control competence.
France:
The taxiway markings are yellow except when a taxiway centre line splits, in which case one of the split
centre lines is blue and the other orange.
You will note that there is nothing from Zambia.

Last edited by nugpot; 4th Jan 2008 at 07:30. Reason: Added additional info
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Old 4th Jan 2008, 12:47
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nugpot ..Thank you for the constructive lesson. I understand from other posts to that I should not apply UK logic to this situation. That's why I said it was either Taxiway or Stand demarcation. A/C in my neck of the woods only park on stands big enough for them and don't have to encroach roadways to get onto stands. So forgive me for thinking its wrong.
Who ever was responsible for the marshalling of the aircraft has a lot of answering to do. I still believe that the truck was parked OK and a wing tip man should be necessary for every arrival on that stand. The fact that its Africa doesn't change that.
Can anyone give me a URL for the stand layout at the airport. I've been trying to find one to no avail.
By the way please don't crucify me. As I said it was only my view after seeing the video. Angles etc. can be deceptive and I will be interested in the accident report. As I spend my working day trying to ensure this sort of thing doesn't happen it can only serve to educate.
Thanks again nugpot...
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Old 4th Jan 2008, 13:00
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unfortunetly the book stops at you know who.....
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Old 4th Jan 2008, 13:39
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call100

Sorry mate, no offense intended.

I'll give you a verbal description of the apron.

If you take the terminal building as South of the apron, running east-west (not true headings, just for illustration), you enter the apron from the north/northeast. The stand/bay is not a pushback bay (no tug available), so you park with the aircraft almost parallel to the terminal building facing about 285 degrees (northwest).

When parked, the whole aircraft is on the northern side of the red line you see on the video. To get a long a/c like the -800 to face in the required direction on the yelow line, you have to overshoot the line with the nose when entering to get the mainwheels on the right track. This causes the wing to cross the red line. As explained in my earlier post, red lines are not intended for aircraft and can be crossed.

I cannot comment on the Captain's intent or thoughts, but I know that Lusaka was never designed to accept 737-800's in that area of the apron.
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Old 4th Jan 2008, 13:56
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The Capt happens to be a world leader in accident analysis. He is in fact Chairman of IFALPA Accident Analysis.

When you have to, on a daily bases, operate into airfields with substandard ATC and substandared ground handling you are going to get these sort of incidents.

Accidents happen. They happen quickly and without warning. Let us all learn from this.
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Old 4th Jan 2008, 14:04
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The Capt happens to be a world leader in accident analysis. He is in fact Chairman of IFALPA Accident Analysis.
Thanks dh, I didn't know it was him. Thanks to him SAA has a superb incident/accident response program and maintains a "no-blame" safety culture.

I bet he is a wee bit miffed though................
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Old 4th Jan 2008, 14:29
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Found this via GoogleEarth:

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Old 4th Jan 2008, 14:44
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With all the comments about "demarcation lines", and white lines, and parking places and rules and regs, and Africa being a different place, and red lines not being proper, blah, blah blah; Boeing put windows on the planes for a reason. This is totally mind boggleing. There is only one person to blame with no other excuses even being tolerated.
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Old 4th Jan 2008, 14:54
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Dear Willit Run

Please, for the sake of the entire aviation industry, do not get involved in Flight Safety or any form of Accident Analysis. Thank goodness there were men far wiser than you that realised that people with your poor attitude have never contributed anything to reducing aircraft accident rates.
The man you are so quick to condemn more that likely contributes more to the aviation community in one month than you will in you entire career.
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Old 4th Jan 2008, 15:02
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unfortunetly the book stops at you know who.....
You mean.....


Lord Voldemort?
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Old 4th Jan 2008, 15:27
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nugpot. No offence taken. Thank you for the pic (I couldn't get GE to zoom in enough) and the description. Things are much clearer now. That really is a nightmare. Lets see what the official line would be. From your point of view will it be a good investigation?
Thanks again.
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Old 4th Jan 2008, 16:00
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From your point of view will it be a good investigation?
I would bet on it, but you probably won't see the report. This should be an internal company matter. No injuries or deaths.
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Old 5th Jan 2008, 12:44
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How come the pax was operating a VCR or phone or whatever? In the new wunderbar electric a/c a little EMI (Electro magnetic interference) could make matters far more interesting - how about an airbus tea trolley...

Yes the chances are minimal but you get someone with an old/repaired device with its shielding damaged sitting in the right seat on the wrong airframe and voila all the dominoes in a row...

In any investigation everything gets checked out so I should think the camera operator will have to explain?

To all those nana s pointing fingers - there are those that have and those that are going to (from the helo world re flying into wires) so try and learn something, I have re the posts on French differences...
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Old 5th Jan 2008, 19:22
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How come the pax was operating a VCR or phone or whatever?
I presume that you have travelled on commercial flights recently? Many pax do not consider the rules apply to them. Many of them do not know that a video camera might emit, albeit a small amount, RF interference. Some will not have listened to the P/A and some P/As do not mention this. The only certainty is that pax will continue to take such pictures. There is a video doing the rounds (and in another R&N thread) about a Tarom flight that encountered a vehicle on the active just prior to rotation.

This is the way it is and stopping it almost impossible, given that CC are strapped in at the time. Also, you can bet that the person taking the video thinks that they will have contributed to the research in the subsequent investigation.
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Old 7th Jan 2008, 02:22
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...Boeing put windows in these things for a reason!

Please help me understand what happened here. Maybe you could get your friend to help us all understand what happened here so we can all learn something. For the life of me, I don't understand why he did not stop after hitting the truck? Did he not feel anything? Was he not looking out the window?
Happy new year!

WR
Quite a harsh post with a degree of prejudging and suposition among your questions. I'm not sure that you are owed an answer to your questions posed in a finding blame vein.

I'm quite sure the plane was stopped (safely) without hurling the presumed percentage of unbuckled passengers from their seats, but that remains to be proved by a followup investigation of some sort. I really don't expect to see any public follow up investigation and presume that any publicly available hints to the results might be in what changes occur to that gate area (restictions on allowable planes and/or tow in, etc.)
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Old 8th Jan 2008, 18:04
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DCA Clarification

nugpot

The following question was sent to DCA Zambia

We would request clarification of the following apron markings at L.I.A.
>
> The Red Line Running along the concrete drain (East- West) on the edge
> of the Main Apron, next to the service road.
> Is this an official designation of the edge of the apron for aircraft operational purposes?


The following answer was received:-

“The Red Lines are Apron Safety lines demarcating the Apron area, marking limits of parking Areas for Ground Equipment, service roads and passenger' paths.

- The lines are narrower and are in different colour from the guidelines used for aircraft.

- This is a standard guide as per ICAO documents.”


So it would appear, as mentioned earlier in this thread, that there is no official (ICAO) line demarcation for the edge of an apron for aircraft operations.
The Red Line is for traffic OFF the apron

Nugpot – does this tie in with your reading of ICAO 14 ??

There is definitely no edge yellow line on the video. As you have pointed out there is only the taxi guide line track which could not be followed by the aircraft in the space available.
Where does that leave the Pilot?? And the Marshal?
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Old 8th Jan 2008, 18:30
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As I said before, ICAO Annex 14 does not mention red lines at all. It is only mentioned in the differences filed by one state (not Zambia).

As for the marshaller and pilot. Who knows what SAA would say. The Captain is always responsible for the safety of his aircraft. Obviously there are mitigating circumstances when under the control of a marshaller.

There but for the Grace of God.....................
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Old 10th Jan 2008, 14:14
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My interpretation of Annex 14.

The red lines are Apron Safety Lines as defined in Annex 14, Section 5.2.13.

Section 5.2.1.6 of the Annex indicates that Apron Safety Lines shall be of a conspicuous colour which shall contrast with that used for aircraft stand markings.

You can't blame the line painter or designer. If the pilot was following a centre line it's pretty clear that it was designed for a much smaller aircraft.

Someone made an operational decision to move an aircraft through an area not intended to accomodate such an aircraft.

This is an important lesson for airports, many of them will see aircraft in the future that are much larger than the critical aircraft used to plan (design) the airport. The onus is on the operations group to work with the physical limitations of an airport when moving larger aircraft around.

Last edited by Throttle Arms; 10th Jan 2008 at 16:46. Reason: Corrected reference to Apron safety lines, thanks Nugpot!
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