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Old 28th Nov 2009, 23:08   #41 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
This is not a case of just africans loading up and going!
Well if you follow the Avient thread at the Freight Dogs forum you would know about the allegations of millions of dollars owing to airport and fuel companies and how they did a runner from Vatry.
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Old 29th Nov 2009, 03:50   #42 (permalink)
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4 onboard were ex-Gemini.

Three of them did not survive.

Fogrunner, check in please...
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Old 29th Nov 2009, 05:41   #43 (permalink)
 
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terrible news

I knew 2 of the 3 who passed quite well and flew with them often. They were fine aviators and gentlemen too. Same has been said about the third fellow who passed. I also know the survivor and hope and pray he makes a recovery. He is also a highly experienced MD11 Captain.

Just to dispel any confusion, these pilots were Americans (irrelevant but just for the record), and they were all competent and VERY highly experienced, especially on the MD-11. There were NO amateurs in this bunch, and they were NOT some marginally trained troop of glassy-eyed semi-illiterates flying some decrepit African airplane as some would imagine or suggest. All that seems to be African about that operation is the registration, curious as that is.

The lousy airline business with non-existent opportunity in the USA compelled these pilots after airline failures and furloughs to go overseas to earn a pay check in order to feed their families, even if it meant flying for a company "based" in Zimbabwe.

God rest your souls my friends
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Old 29th Nov 2009, 07:48   #44 (permalink)
 
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The NTSB is sending investigators to China, so that should settle questions about what kind of investigation we´re going to get:

U.S. to Probe China Cargo Plane Crash - WSJ.com
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Old 29th Nov 2009, 10:23   #45 (permalink)
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Xinhua: .........[A] 61-year-old American man was seriously injured with bone fractures in the chest and lung as well as pneumothorax. "If there is no complication, he is expected to be out of danger within 48 to 72 hours," said Sun Wanju, deputy head of the hospital.

The other three injured men were from Indonesia, Belgium and Zimbabwe. They had bone fractures and contusions, according to the hospital.
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Old 29th Nov 2009, 11:46   #46 (permalink)
 
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Angel

Hi all

I dont know if you've seen these pictures but on sky news they have some pictures (at the bottom of the article) from the far end of the extended centre line and you can clearly see how the a/c took out the localiser antennas and also the tyre tracks through the mud and the long grass before its final resting place:

Three Americans Die In Plane Crash In Shanghai On Board Zimbabwe Plane, According To US Embassy | World News | Sky News



HFS
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Old 29th Nov 2009, 13:38   #47 (permalink)
 
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dc10fr8k9

"There were NO amateurs in this bunch, and they were NOT some marginally trained troop of glassy-eyed semi-illiterates flying some decrepit African airplane as some would imagine or suggest."

So what you're implying most African operations are staffed with "semi-illiterates"?

These guys might have been experienced and on top of their game but the thing still crashed.

So what if people are simple? If aviation, was kept simple it would be a lot safer than it is now IMHO. We are getting too far away from the basics, for my liking. Instead of becoming simpler, aviation is becoming "complicated" to the detriment of the basics. There is a lot of time that should be spent on the basics, that is taken up with covering ones backside with paperwork, to keep the authorities happy. We are supposed to have less paperwork not more. I think this problem is going to get worse. We are gradually being driven into the "ground" with it all.

We have aircraft coming out now, in lower weight classes than heavies with new avionic fits, that require a totally separate type rating for the almost the same airframe. Is it getting simpler, therefore safer? I dont think so.

I am not saying it was the case in this tragedy as no one yet knows the cause. Human error may have played a part.
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Old 29th Nov 2009, 16:54   #48 (permalink)
 
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Reported to be a long runway, and a tailstrike with an experienced crew. What would happen if freight shifted on rotation, obviously after V1?
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Old 29th Nov 2009, 17:11   #49 (permalink)
 
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FMC Entry...

Sounds like the zero fuel weight may have been entered into the Gross Weight line and the FMC generated a low V speed set. Numerous accidents/incidents have been the result of this. Sad but true.
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Old 29th Nov 2009, 17:30   #50 (permalink)
 
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The 2 last comments are very true. Possible causes:
- incorrect ZFW entry. It`s a killer.
This has for consequences:
- strongly incorrect TO speeds. Incorrect flaps setting. Inadapted TO power.

What about a badly balanced/loaded plane as well?

Crew fatigue? ( including loadmaster ) Could be the root cause of all above.

Sadly another african-registered aircraft...How well are checked the flight operations there in Zimbabwe? Same standards as in UK or Germany for instance?
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Old 29th Nov 2009, 17:54   #51 (permalink)
 
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I wish a speedy recovery to the survivors. Good men trying to earn an honest wage. I know one of them.

As for Avient, I hope it goes under and Andrew Smith gets held liable, culpable and whatever else can be thrown at him. And the same should go for the corrupt British politicians on his "payroll" that have allowed this company to deal in arms and African blood for so long unchecked.

I am from Africa and flown around there most of my life. I have seen the direct results of the "business" that this illegal UK company engages in. The dead bodies and maimed children from the weapons Mr. Smith so happily supplied while the UK looked the other way.

It is no coincidence that one of Africa's richest countries has the highest body count of any war since WWII. All assisted by vultures like Mr. Smith.

Its a pity others should lose their lives, while Mr. Smith lives on with his ill gotten gains.
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Old 29th Nov 2009, 18:30   #52 (permalink)
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Very good, condolences masking an attack and political points all in one post! You left out global warming and Tibetan independence!
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Old 29th Nov 2009, 18:31   #53 (permalink)
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Hear Hear!

Perhaps time the gentleman starts providing pertinent undiabolic answers and his silent partners and backers exposed.

In this lies the root of his flying on a Zimbwean AOC of convenience, allowed by a regime that despises anything British and every "white man", with a type that the Zim CAA are not qualidied and approved to regulate.

Think people, it cant be too dificult to figure out!
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Old 29th Nov 2009, 18:50   #54 (permalink)
 
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Doubleu-Anker,

How ironic that you suggest that I am doing exactly the kind of thing I am admonishing others not to do in this (or any such instance)! No indeed Anker, I am not implying that. I am implying that others ought not to make such an assumption, as many probably may!

Having said that, African registered aircraft just like the MD-11 itself, have about the highest rate of crashing statistically. So being in an African registered aircraft that is also an MD-11, the odds definitely go up astronomically, despite the new paint job and the seasoned crew. But not something I would not have risked after being out of work for a year myself, as my resume was also in that pile. Though I was not current on the MD11 anymore and so that (fortunately for me in retrospect) put me out of the running.

In any case, it's too bad that America is in such decline that Americans have to go to work for a Zimbabwean company of all things (or any overseas company for that matter) in order to pay the bills back home. Once upon a time our ancestors emigrated to America to seek work and purpose, and now many of us have had to leave to do the same. We are a country in decline with a leader who bows too deeply to foreign princes and potentates, but I digress. Sad what has become of us, and of our glorious industry, where the likes of Juan Trippe are surely spinning in their graves.

Half of my old colleagues from the airline that we worked for (which went Chapter 7 in 2008), had to go overseas (me included) to find work. A few are flying multi-million dollar heavy MD-11's registered in the USA, for less $ than what an average waiter makes, just in order to "stay in the game". Many are still out of work. And now a few are dead.

In any case, all I wanted to do was to pre-empt the idle speculation of some of the inevitable self appointed experts and "top guns" that usually come out of the woodwork when a tragedy like this happens. All I wanted to say, whatever the result of the crash, that these were great guys, and great aviators. And, "there but for the grace of God" go the rest of us.
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Old 29th Nov 2009, 19:45   #55 (permalink)
 
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Almost no maintenance, and not allowed to write in the techlog!
No flight time limitations!
Loadmasters stay onboard for days, I flew with one who was staying onboard for four days!
No regulatory oversight.

No surprise.
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Old 29th Nov 2009, 20:04   #56 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 777AV8R
Sounds like the zero fuel weight may have been entered into the Gross Weight line and the FMC generated a low V speed set. Numerous accidents/incidents have been the result of this. Sad but true.
What's even sadder is that all those accidents/incidents still haven't resulted in worldwide acceptance of an FMS update that simply blocks the Gross Weight entry field while the airplane is on the ground. Such an FMS update does exist - as an expensive option. Typical example of an ergonomic design flaw that has cost far too many lives.
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Old 29th Nov 2009, 20:26   #57 (permalink)
 
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xetroV
You are correct in saying one way to fix the problem of putting the zfw into the gw field in the fmc is simply to block any data entry whilst on the ground, but why is it an expensive option?
My company did just that shortly after a tailscrape incident a few years back, anyway the cost of having that mod done to the fmc software has got to be a hell of a lot cheaper then repairing an a/c or worse still losing one.
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Old 29th Nov 2009, 20:32   #58 (permalink)
 
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just wondering, knowing the "background" of this operation: what kind of cargo where they supposed to deliver ?
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Old 29th Nov 2009, 21:25   #59 (permalink)
 
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Some things are left un-asked. You certainly would not imagine anything "questionable" coming out of China. eh?
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Old 29th Nov 2009, 21:34   #60 (permalink)
 
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I was fortunate in that my senority kept me away from cargoliners except for a two month period where I flew them just to see what it was like and because the schedule was fitting for other plans I had. But.....I treated every take-off as a max gross takeoff no matter what and even then added ten extra knots to everything. Now, this wasn't in an MD-11 [it was a DC-8F], but I'm sure the same thing could be done. My comment is just because there have been a few accidents where an extra ten knots of airspeed would have saved the day. But, we'll have to wait for the final report to see what all the numbers were; runway, GW, etc. Hindsight is so easy.
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