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Engineneer death in Tenerife South during engine test

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Engineneer death in Tenerife South during engine test

Old 17th Jun 2008, 22:41
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It does seem a little dense to be near an engine during test, but it happens. All too easily unfortunately. We've all seen the various videos on youTube.
A few years back during a rotors running Lynx test one of the Techs had an absent-minded look at the oil level in the intermediate gearbox at the bottom of the tail. He was thinking 'My - It's a bit Windy down here!?!', just for half a second, before realising why.
Then a poor girl, having been briefed before a flight, and before exiting the aircraft to go forwards until clear of the rotor disc, in her excitement jumped out and ran around the back with predictable consequences.
Sometimes people just crack on without thinking 100% because you can't SEE the danger, especially when you do it in normal safety day in, day out, and engines are a bit of a special case, even though the noise is a bit of a giveaway.
ps Nice Photo
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Old 17th Jun 2008, 23:32
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With all due respect

I think as in most walks of life familiarity does breed contempt. You may as others have said walked around a dangerous environment many times before and got away with it - however with a jet engine the nearer you tempt those boundaries the closer you get and once you cross the line there is no second chance.

However, whilst the above is a good observation of life (at least in my view) we cant say this is what happend to this poor soul - it could be they stumbled and fell, it could be so sinister they were pushed - I dont think we can speculate really on what happened without the facts but I do applaud the observations that can encourage more respect around the environment.

Keep up the educational and informative reading.

Regards,

A humble PAX
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Old 18th Jun 2008, 00:40
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"Quote"i see these guys doing engine tests day in day out, im always amazed to see them lying directly under the engine when its at full throttle......
As far as I am aware Airbus states that the Fan cowls are to be closed when the engine is run at "Full throttle"...I personally wouldn't want to just rely on the fan cowl supports when power settings above 74% (just above the "No-Go zone")
My condolances to the engineer"s family..
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Old 18th Jun 2008, 02:25
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Having worked on and around the cfm's amongst others for for over 25 years, there are numerous reasons to approach, inspect, and adjust a running turbine engine. The entry/exit zones are stated in the manual. As are the use and connection points of a safety harness. Also typically no need to be near an inlet hazard zone above idle power. A previous poster was correct, above idle fan cowls closed. It is sad that this fellow was was killed, what also is sad is that proper training and procedures weren't followed. Maybe in the future this will remind others of one of the dangers A&P"S or Engineers to you CAA types face each day on the line. Next time it could be you.
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Old 18th Jun 2008, 03:24
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Guppy,

Thanks for keeping me from having to reply to this thread directly. You Sir, will be the recipient of many beers at the next squadron party.

I'm trying to imagine what kind of lanyard would have to be used to keep one from being ingested. Oh, the one that keeps you 25 feet from the inlet! Yeah, that one. The same one that keeps you from getting close enough to actually DO anything.

Seriously, there isn't really any reason to be that close to an engine at power, but people do it to save time. I have to ask, who's time is being saved and is it worth it?

THAT is the problem. But what do I know.

Thanks for your post Guppy, you said it all.

PB
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Old 18th Jun 2008, 06:34
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Actually, IIRC, big fans like the JT9D's the graphic cone of danger is actually 20 some feet in front of the engine at full rated power. There is an extreme danger depiction at something like ten feet. The cubic volume of air being affected is enormous at max power. Enough to suck passengers into the engines off the upper deck of United in Hawaii.

Blame the operator? That's silly. The rated and qualified mechanic or pilot in this case was probably blameless. He can't see what's going on from upstairs. Tethers? Ridiculous. We have a bad enough tripping hazard with just the fuel static line.

Working around spinning props is even more dangerous, but mechanics must do it. One second of absent-mindedness and you've just walked into oblivion.

When I was 22 we couldn't get the second engine started on a Falcon 20. The FBO's gpu had already taken off (they didn't wait for anything.) No Apu. I told the captain I would drop the aft hatch and climb into the tail to bang on the circut breaker panel that we knew housed the sticking relay (while he pressed the start button.) The captain reluctantly agreed. On the way to the hatch in the dark, I passed by the running aft-fan (fuel sprayed) GE CF700 tail pipe. Even though I was partially leaning forward, it burned the hair off the very top of my head. Man did the smell of burning hair smell bad! If I'd have been any taller I'd have been in bad shape! Got it started though.

Later that year, an Evergreen mechanic from Marana was in Phoenix meeting an Emery DC-8 that had lost nose gear steering out of SFO. When the jet stopped the 21 year old mechanic climbed into the nose wheel well to survey the problem. Bang. Crash. The nose gear retracted cutting him into pieces. Don't know if it hurt anybody on board, as it was quite a fall, but it was certainly a horrific sight as we parked right next to them after it happened.

Young men make stupid mistakes sometimes in aviation. It's still the safest form of transportation ever devised. And definitely safer than roofing!
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Old 18th Jun 2008, 07:33
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cages

it was my understanding that regulations required a steel cage to be placed in front of the engine prior to a ground run up.
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Old 18th Jun 2008, 08:14
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it was my understanding that regulations required a steel cage to be placed in front of the engine prior to a ground run up.
As far as I know boeing state in their precautions that an inlet guard should be used..

How many engineers have actually had access to one these in a line enviornment???????
I never had, and I know what would happen if I refused to run an engine wihout one.
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Old 18th Jun 2008, 08:42
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Double standards

That's appalling. What are they saying then, the airlines that won't provide safety equipment? That ground staff don't matter?
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Old 18th Jun 2008, 08:54
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Sitigeltfel....Do you know exactly where the photo in your post was taken??....If it is where i think it is,a full set of engine guards are provided at this location and SHOULD have been used!!.
As for working on engines whilst they are running,yes most engineers have probably done this on many occasions,but i have never known anyone do this when the engine is above idle....Even at that setting on a Trent/GE90 it is a little disconcerting,so good teamwork/trust is vital to say the least.
I cannot ever recall seeing anyone on a "tethered line",so cannot comment on this approach, but in my opinion,it does seem to add an extra hazard to the proceedings.

Condolences to all involved.
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Old 18th Jun 2008, 09:26
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There is a modicum of sense in what mr slip and turn says. We used to do compressor washes at Gatwick on the DC10s in the 70's and this was well before the H&S people had bite. Every wing engine wash was done with a harness on and anchored to the faithful Douglas push back tug. This however was a set and well rehearsed procedure where the harness was a necessity. Even now I shiver at the power of the fan, would suck a pen out of the pocket no problem. Even worse was trimming the JT3D with the thing running, now that's just plain daft these days. I agree that many engine runs require the headset guy to be free to move about but now when I run ANY aircraft above idle power, the blokes are at the front windows where we can see them. Sad day indeed, keep safe . . . . .
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Old 18th Jun 2008, 14:47
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Mr Brown

We had cages on the Comet @ Dans' in the 'Good old days'. Can remember being under an Avon that surged saw the shock wave in front of me and engulfed me.
They were the day's
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Old 18th Jun 2008, 16:35
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With any modern, hi-bypass, turbo fan engine today, there should never be a reason to be close to the engine during hi-power operations. The danger areas (both intake and exhaust) would prevent you from getting close enough to carry out any maintenance safely. Some procedures require you to carry out maintenance at idle power but if this is necessary, any sensible engineer-in-charge will have briefed all their staff on safe access corridors before the run starts. Unfortunately, it is too easy to get distracted or forget these procedures in the middle of a noisy engine run. It is a very stressful environment and only experience and common sense can prevent these accidents.
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Old 18th Jun 2008, 20:02
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Are there any facts about what power setting was briefed for this engine run vs what actually happened

I'm not sure I know what went wrong vs all the speculation on here about what not to do and who's at fault.
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Old 18th Jun 2008, 21:20
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We ALWAYS use full intake guards when ground running RB211s and are fully trained/briefed on ground runs, an engine even at ground idle commands respect, I have seen a guard blasted foreward when checking reverse thrust, that photograph looks decidedly dangerous.
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Old 19th Jun 2008, 02:11
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We ALWAYS use full intake guards when ground running RB211s and are fully trained/briefed on ground runs, an engine even at ground idle commands respect, I have seen a guard blasted foreward when checking reverse thrust, that photograph looks decidedly dangerous
How so? .......................................
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Old 19th Jun 2008, 08:14
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We ALWAYS use full intake guards when ground running RB211s and are fully trained/briefed on ground runs, an engine even at ground idle commands respect, I have seen a guard blasted foreward when checking reverse thrust, that photograph looks decidedly dangerous.
Wheras we regularly run up RB211s and other types on the ramp with no guards. Never above idle and never with anyone anywhere near the engine.
This report mentions the engineer was with 2 colleagues by the nose gear , I fail to see how he was ingested from that distance with an engine running at idle.

We only use guards when adjustments or test are needed on a running engine and again only ever at idle. The picture in this thread of a 747 engine run is perfectly acceptable to me given that the staff monitoring it are generally inside a van well away from the engine.

Sad case , lets hope we find out exactly what happened in time so we can all learn from it. RIP
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Old 19th Jun 2008, 08:54
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Originally Posted by CHINOOKER
Sitigeltfel....Do you know exactly where the photo in your post was taken??
Sorry, no info on that. I lifted the shot from a non-aviation photo enthusiasts website.
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Old 19th Jun 2008, 10:55
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Fargoo,
Whilst i agree with much you said in your last post,your assumption that it is ok to run an engine at high power settings "unguarded" is not totally correct,especially within BA.
Whilst i agree with you that if you are at a remote location,(ie doing a block run on runway 23 at LHR),this is acceptable,as everyone should be secure in a van/tug etc...well away from the a/c
However do the same thing within the confines of the run up pens at the maintenance base and you immediately fall foul of both H&S rulings and the BA Quality dept as "appropriate engine guards" are provided at these locations!!
Its sad to say,but there are a few individuals i know that tend to often
"overlook/dismiss" these requirements as they are always under pressure to get the job done!! All well and good,until something tragic happens.....then see how much support you get from those above you!!
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Old 19th Jun 2008, 12:58
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Are the engines on a A320 FADEC controlled and if so can someone pls give me a sound reason for being near a FADEC equiped engine?

I do runups on mechanically controlled engines (although not high bypass ratio), during engine trims you have to be at the engine for adjustments.
I cannot think of any reason for being anywhere near a running engine which is FADEC controlled.
No adjusments to be made equalls STAY CLEAR!!

My thoughts are with the relatives he leaves behind
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