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Air China makes headlines again

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Air China makes headlines again

Old 6th Dec 2011, 10:53
  #21 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: A parallel universe.
Posts: 114
We frequently land close to MLW (302t) and use 5500 kgs as a final reserve fuel number.

Landing with 6000 lbs (2.7t) is.....scary, but it's not necessarily the crews fault IMO.

I completely agree with oicur12.again:
The biggest threat to safety arriving in PEK is PEK ATC during a diversion.
Chinese ATC = endless vectors and speed reductions with no to very little traffic. Totally incapable of thinking even one millimeter outside the box.

Reminds me of this topic from last summer.
Tank2Engine is offline  
Old 6th Dec 2011, 12:30
  #22 (permalink)  
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Typical of some who are just enthusiasts and have very little real understanding of real life flight operations to cast criticism without all the facts.

Landing with 6,000lb (2,700kg), whilst low and most definitely below final reserve for the B744, is not exclusive to Chinese pilots. It has happened in a B744 for a well known EU airline during a recent Caribbean bad wx diversion and no doubt similarly to many other operators, irrespective of their nationality.

If the decision to divert is justified and due to circumstances results in a safe landing but below final reserve fuel, then after any investigation, the lessons will be learnt and hopefully avoided in the future. To cast aspersions on a 'chinese' crew (could have been expats, do we really know, or care?) without knowing the circumstances just shows an immature and less than basic knowledge of what really goes on with the airlines.

Anticipating landing with less than your company minimum reserve requires, in the EU, a PAN or in the US a minimum fuel advisory. Expecting a landing with less than final reserve requires an immedate mayday and top priority for a landing.

Having landed a B744 with final reserve after diverting (3,700kg 8,100lb) in the USA, I can attest that it is not a comfortable feeling, particularly so if the wx is less than CAVOK. Had the wx been less than ideal causing arrival delays, I have no doubt we would have been declaring a mayday

Considering the B744 burns around 2,500kg (5,500lb) an hour at ground idle, never mind the burn during a go-around, any midssed approach at or below final reserve fuel would require an extremely tight circuit and a commited landing.
cargo boy is offline  
Old 7th Dec 2011, 22:58
  #23 (permalink)  
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Typical of some who are just enthusiasts and have very little real understanding of real life flight operations to cast criticism without all the facts.
Par for the PPRuNe course these days.
stepwilk is offline  
Old 8th Dec 2011, 05:16
  #24 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: uk
Posts: 372
Walpole OBE = Over BovingDON Empty, not burnham. DON in capitals for our overseas cousins...its not BovingTON!
frangatang is offline  
Old 12th Feb 2012, 01:57
  #25 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: China
Age: 45
Posts: 6
They hold in the destination they arrived on emergency fuel to the alternate...the company fired many of the operations managers after the incident and of course pilots were punished in traditional Chinese standard....
Flying Tiger 74 is offline  
Old 12th Feb 2012, 12:15
  #26 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: 3rd Rock, #29B
Posts: 681

for a B74, you are into issues with hydraulic cooling but at least it is not going to be for long....

With bad wx, JFK is a mess both for arrivals and once arrived, on the ground. It is quite possible that the delays ont he ground end up with large fuel burns on the taxi in phase, like happened in LHR to MAS a long time back.

Having diverted from PEK and JFK, it is line ball as to which is worse, both can be entertaining. Only one of these places held us in the hold and then departed an aircraft through our airspace in the hold while we were completing a hyd failure checklist amongst other issues, jammed inbd TE flaps etc. JFK is an embarrassment, hardly a grand entrance into the new world via a 3rd world port with more in common with Lagos than LAX...

PS: guten tag 73NG...

fdr is offline  
Old 16th Feb 2012, 16:36
  #27 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: UK
Posts: 106
Landing with only around 20 minutes fuel in the tanks might well not be the fault of the crew. We can all imagine tough scenarios where this might happen. It is in the back of our minds whenever we are forced to fly with minimum fuels for the trip, when weather is poor or when our fuel state is not quite following the plan. And we've all seen Die Hard 2.

However there is no mention here of an emergency call. To land with less than 30 minutes' holding fuel on board without making a Mayday call is the fault of the crew.
Flaymy is offline  
Old 17th Feb 2012, 21:22
  #28 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: Queensland
Posts: 383
Companies often present crew with a pre-computed flight plan. Alternate in many cases is a lesser standard airfield, if possible not too far from destination. The computer flight plan is based on no enroute delays (maybe 5%) to that alternate. Well, excuse me, but get a dozen aircraft wanting to leave the holding pattern at the same time for the same alternate, and the flight plan is simply a wish list.

Congestion at the alternate(s) uses up heaps of fuel, due
runway backtracking by previous aircraft
controller not up to the multiple arrival tasks
procedural approaches without radar

The gradual realisation that many factors are conspiring to make continuing flight less attractive puts pressure on crews to land under unfavourable circumstances. Operators sometimes put pressure on us to carry fuel close to the flight plan, with little consideration for full possibilities at destination and beyond. Many captains resist this pressure. Some do not.
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Old 17th Feb 2012, 23:50
  #29 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2008
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Why is a Chinese individual--the original poster--so quick to trash a Chinese airline for all the Westerners who read this forum? Does he have an agenda we don't know about? He doesn't seem to be a pilot...
This piece of work may have taken a Chinese name but if you have a look in the Far East/SEA and Fragrant Harbour forums you willl come to conclusion it's probably be the same chap posting nasty stuff using various other names.
Samba Anaconda is offline  

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