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Avianca A332, Santa Cruz fuel leak, lost 17 tons!

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Avianca A332, Santa Cruz fuel leak, lost 17 tons!

Old 19th Sep 2013, 09:04
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Avianca A332, Santa Cruz fuel leak, lost 17 tons!

An Avianca Airbus A330-200, registration N975AV performing flight AV-88 from Buenos Aires Ezeiza,BA (Argentina) to Bogota (Colombia) with 252 passengers and 10 crew, was enroute at FL380 near Santa Cruz (Bolivia) when the crew detected a fuel leak and decided to divert to Santa Cruz's Viru Viru Airport for a safe landing.

The airline confirmed the crew detected a fuel leak prompting the diversion, about 17 tons of the 42 tons of fuel on board were lost. An Airbus A320-200 was dispatched to Santa Cruz, whcih took about 150 passengers to Bogota in the night of Sep 14th, the remaining passengers were taken to hotels and were rebooked onto other flights the following day.
Video of it



Incident: Avianca A332 near Santa Cruz on Sep 14th 2013, fuel leak

Last edited by NutLoose; 19th Sep 2013 at 09:07.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 09:34
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Some fuel leak! Its gushing out. Surprised they taxied off the runway with fuel still visible pouring out near the No2 engine and near hot brakes. We've seen what a fuel leak can do in a very short time with the China 737. I don't speak Spanish but would hope that the crew were informed by the tower that fuel was pouring out.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 10:03
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Seems very doubtful that the QRH was actioned or understood.....

......use of thrust reversers?
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 11:43
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I definitely agree with Mungo Man, allowing the aircraft to taxi with the fuel flowing out, which is very clear from the camera that is filming, poses a huge fire risk....although I couldn't make out whether thrust reverses were used or not, and not knowing that much about which engine option Avianca use, but obviously all the core jet e flux is sent out the back when using thrust revers, which again is perfect for causing catastrophic fires (Concorde), so I'm curious why they didn't stop as quickly as poss and why fire trucks weren't quicker on the scene covering the breaks with foam and what ever else they use.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 11:51
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From the comments on the link

from the audio is clearly noticeable that the crew didn't know, or could not identify until that moment (leaving the runway), the point were they had been loosing the fuel from.

When the GND controller says:
- you have a considerable leak from the right hand engine, please proceed to shut that engine down and confirm us if you can taxi with only one engine or we can tow you to the platform.- (more or less)

the crew asks for confirmation:
- from the right hand engine?

the controllers confirms that, the crew states that they have shut down the right hand engine and that for the moment they will maintain that position. Over there the recording ends.

Is going to be interesting to see what caused that big fuel leak. Fortunately the exhaust gases from that engine didn't ignite the fuel. Maybe the engineers planned for a similar scenario on the designing phase.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 11:55
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not knowing that much about which engine option Avianca use
Trent 772.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 12:32
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Yep, having looked at the footage several times, the reversers were used
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 13:16
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Three words for this crew-------Fuel leak checklist

So, they knew they had a big leak because they immediately diverted to the nearest suitable airfield, good so far However they obviously didn't read the QRH or FCOM at all????????

Very bloody lucky they didn't burn...

Last edited by nitpicker330; 19th Sep 2013 at 13:26.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 13:22
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Nice to see so many emergency vehicles in attendance!
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 13:22
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obviously all the core jet e flux is sent out the back when using thrust revers, which again is perfect for causing catastrophic fires (Concorde)
The core jet efflux comes out of the back of a high-bypass turbofan engine whether or not the thrust reversers are being used.

Hot-stream reversers, which featured on early RB211s, JT9Ds, etc, were one of those things that everybody thought was a good idea at the time, but then realised weren't actually doing very much to slow the aircraft down and were therefore removed.

Incidentally I'd be fascinated to know what you think thrust reversers had to do with the Concorde accident.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 15:31
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nitpicker330;
Three words for this crew-------Fuel leak checklist

So, they knew they had a big leak because they immediately diverted to the nearest suitable airfield, good so far However they obviously didn't read the QRH or FCOM at all????????
Not necessarily. Nothing is "obvious" at this stage of the event except that there is a fuel leak from the right engine. While the QRH first addresses a leak from the engine/pylon and requires an engine shutdown, (Engine Master OFF), we don't know if they did the QRH or not and we don't know why the leak occured* and won't until the engine is examined.

*Fuel Leak Event - A333

Last edited by PJ2; 19th Sep 2013 at 15:36.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 15:38
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Dave,
"Incidentally I'd be fascinated to know what you think thrust reversers had to do with the Concorde accident".
I shouldn't bother ...... he's obviously been reading urban legends.
Not to mention the time and effort it took to find the ignition source of the Concorde fuel leak.... the electrical arc in the wheel well was after all only the "most probablde cause".
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 15:42
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Folks,
With a fuel leak like this, it is reminiscent of the Canadian aircraft that finally did a dead stick landing at a small island (don't remember which one) in the middle of the Atlantic.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 15:56
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With a fuel leak like this, it is reminiscent of the Canadian aircraft that finally did a dead stick landing at a small island (don't remember which one) in the middle of the Atlantic.
Lajes, Azores.

That, coincidentally (or not), was another Trent-powered A330-200.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 16:17
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To taxi or to stop...

Just wondering what the general opinion would be with a fuel leak of this magnitude - in these particular circumstances, i.e. what looked like 'limited' fire truck(s) in attendance?

Would you

a) continue to taxi hoping the fuel doesn't ignite, and to get closer to other(?) emergency services which are not shown on the video?

Or

b) stop as soon as, and to allow the fuel to pool around and under the a/c with hot brakes - potentially trapping all inside if it went up?

Not seeing the conclusion of how it is actually dealt with does make it a little more difficult.

Last edited by E_S_P; 19th Sep 2013 at 16:19.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 16:25
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As a Tower controller in UK about 20 years ago I had a B752 depart with a massive fuel leak, after about a dozen attempts to get the crew to realise they had a problem, "No indication of a problem in the cockpit" my self and the radar controller kept getting told!!
After they realised they had a problem they returned and had to use reverse on landing due to high weight, the whole of the aircraft was engulfed in fuel vapour!! I remember a helicopter pilot sitting rotors just accidentally broadcast
It was a common 'ish' fault with fuel line on RB211-535 at the time!
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 16:45
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historically fuel fed fires on the ground with a running engine ignite after the aircraft is stopped.

The only other ones I can think of was where the engine itself had opened up its innards to allow a fuel leak inside.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 16:55
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@DaveReidUK

Hot-stream reversers, which featured on early RB211s, JT9Ds, etc, were one of those things that everybody thought was a good idea at the time, but then realised weren't actually doing very much to slow the aircraft down and were therefore removed.
To the best of my recollection every RB211 built had the thrust reverser in the hi-bypass duct and never used the hot jet thrust. It would make no sense since virtually all the thrust came from the large fan.

It certainly was there when I was working on the reverse thrust interlock system and that was prior to first test flight.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 16:57
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Maybe and depends on the type

Then again some of us have got a tie as a result of a straight forward tank failure.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 17:48
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Jeez wept......the QRH was definitely not consulted. Th rev? No fire engines at end of runway to meet and greet.
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