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AF B772, GPWS averts CFIT

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AF B772, GPWS averts CFIT

Old 22nd May 2015, 03:50
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AF B772, GPWS averts CFIT

I'd like to know some opinion about this incident (post retrieved by www.avherald.com)

An Air France Boeing 777-200, registration F-GSPG performing flight AF-953 from Malabo (Equatorial Guinea) to Douala (Cameroon) with 37 people on board, was en route to Douala maintaining FL090 when the crew requested and was cleared to deviate north of the assigned route due to thunderstorms. Later, while turning right towards Douala the EGPWS of the aircraft issued a terrain warning and called "PULL UP!" which the crew complied with climbing the aircraft to FL130, where the EGPWS stopped the warnings. The aircraft subsequently continued for a safe landing in Douala.

The French BEA reported in their weekly bulletin that the occurrence was rated a serious incident, the French BEA is investigating the serious incident.

My note: MSA there is 15700 ft
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Old 22nd May 2015, 11:10
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Maybe loss of situational awareness being consumed (mentally) by the weather presented?
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Old 22nd May 2015, 11:42
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It's Air France...what more do you need to know...
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Old 22nd May 2015, 13:29
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Are we to believe that the crew of a European National Carrier operating one of the worlds most sophisticated a/c are found bumbling around in IMC with nothing to tell them what the MSA is in their area ? Are AF existing in in some sort of time-warp trapped in the 1950s ? What IS going on with their training division ?
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Old 22nd May 2015, 14:28
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EGPWS has made more saves than we'll ever know about.
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Old 22nd May 2015, 15:05
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Thumbs up

Thank you and God's Blessings to Don Bateman and all his colleagues at Honeywell for developing GPWS.
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Old 22nd May 2015, 15:15
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Originally Posted by Gianni57 View Post
I'd like to know some opinion about this incident (post retrieved by www.avherald.com)

An Air France Boeing 777-200, registration F-GSPG performing flight AF-953 from Malabo (Equatorial Guinea) to Douala (Cameroon) with 37 people on board, was en route to Douala maintaining FL090 when the crew requested and was cleared to deviate north of the assigned route due to thunderstorms......

My note: MSA there is 15700 ft
Is this correct?
I find it quite strange. Am I the only one?
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Old 22nd May 2015, 15:33
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was also a story at jacdec.de
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Old 22nd May 2015, 16:17
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maintaining FL090 I
find it quite strange. Am I the only one?
Out of interest, why?
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Old 22nd May 2015, 16:23
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My note: MSA there is 15700 ft
I am not a pilot, nor am I familiar with the area. However, looking at google maps I can see that it is a short hop and, depending on runways in use, the majority portion of the flight is over water. A visual approach on Douala's easterly runway from the direction of Malabo would not constitute a problem flying at FL090. The problem presumably arose from the wx deviation and a possible loss of situational awareness.
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Old 22nd May 2015, 16:28
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A 777 maintaining 9000 ft where the MSA is almost 16000?
Not an airline pilot, so what am I missing here?
Is that the normal SID profile for that departure?
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Old 22nd May 2015, 16:46
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I guess they were also helped by some probably awesome climb performance of a 777-200 with only 37 people aboard.
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Old 22nd May 2015, 16:53
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DirtyProp, check google maps. See for yourself. The MSA applies to certain areas around Douala, otherwise nothing could ever land!
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Old 22nd May 2015, 17:10
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It was almost a full moon that night. I wonder if they climbed into VMC and puckered up a little.
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Old 22nd May 2015, 17:12
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"Out of interest, why?"

Probably, Nigel, for the same reason that many professional pilots find it odd too. I'm sure you know (or should know!) that flying below MSA IMC is only OK under radar or on a procedural cleared route where that level or above is acceptable. To then 'divert' off that route at FL90 without a **** clue where the hard stuff is is OK with you?

AF certainly know how to screw things up! Who are you with?
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Old 22nd May 2015, 17:22
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I think there is a subtle 'gotcha' waiting to trap the unwary. You fly around your regular routes and airfields and have a feeling for what's underneath you. Often, especially in B777, you will be at a major radar airfield. Thus you fly the magenta line & radar vectors and do not have an en-route chart or TMA chart to hand. You've briefed via the STAR chart, but now you debate off the STAR and are lost. It's a consequence of LNAV/MAP displays; and even more with paperless cockpits. OK the charts on on i-pads, but only of you lookout them. Complacency is going to be a killer, and trusting technology to save you is not a healthy attitude. Remember Air Inter at Strasbourg with the EGPWS disconnected. It would have save them, but the company had disconnected it.
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Old 22nd May 2015, 17:56
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Originally Posted by Hotel Tango View Post
DirtyProp, check google maps. See for yourself. The MSA applies to certain areas around Douala, otherwise nothing could ever land!
Thank you, but I rather check the SID for that airport.
We use Jeppesen charts for flying, not google maps.
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Old 22nd May 2015, 18:50
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While I can't comment on this situation, I find is surprising how many pilots are quite happy to fly out of airports in high terrain with both ND's selected to weather instead of terrain......in the winter when there is no CB's for at least a thousand miles. There is a theory that the terrain display will show when there is a GPWS warning but at some locations, you may not be able to outclimb the mountains especially if an engine is lost. Some like to immediately level off after a problem in these areas as well(at least in the sim) while still headed for terrain.

Now in this case, there is almost certainly weather around but if you are at low altitude in the mountains, you may want to have one display on terrain or at least be checking the terrain once in a while on the other, especially if deviating off the safety of the airway MEA to get around weather.

Last edited by JammedStab; 5th Jun 2015 at 00:44.
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Old 22nd May 2015, 20:43
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Perhaps some cooling in the hat would be appropriate. GPWS will warn of gradients of terrain,with comparisons of closing speed. So a sudden change of direction may pick up the first impressions,until the computing element can decide the rate of gradual approachment to a perceived threat. It will give indications,based on it,s own programmed limits. It does not mean that pilots are not aware of,where they are. They simply record that GPWS warning came to us here. It,s a common practice to react in Gpws false warnings. Most common Practice is to do what it wants You to do,so i guess this was the case.You will be safe,then. (from the upper floors and eager reporters,too) I have had many of those,some for reminders,and most for just seeing the limits of the system. -and for pilots today, EGPWS is beyond my time in cockpits,so maybe someone would like to tell about that gadget,to ease also the minds of any interested,in here.
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Old 22nd May 2015, 20:55
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@Naali quote in part "GPWS will warn of gradients of terrain,with comparisons of closing speed. So a sudden change of direction may pick up the first impressions,until the computing element can decide the rate of gradual approachment to a perceived threat. It will give indications,based on it,s own programmed limits. It does not mean that pilots are not aware of,where they are. They simply record that GPWS warning came to us here. It,s a common practice to react in Gpws false warnings. Most common Practice is to do what it wants You to do,so i guess this was the case.You will be safe,then. (from the upper floors and eager reporters,too) I have had many of those,some for reminders,and most for just seeing the limits of the system. -and for pilots today, EGPWS is beyond my time in cockpits,so maybe someone would like to tell about that gadget,to ease also the minds of any interested,in here."

There are many enhancements introduced by EGPWS compared to GPWS. Two key ones are that altimetry, terrain database and navigation position are combined to provide "predictive" alerts of threatening terrain ahead and a color-coded terrain awareness display that provides important situational information about the surrounding terrain with respect to altitude and location.

Those seeking information or unfamiliar with EGPWS might start here: https://aerospace.honeywell.com/en/p...FQwPaQodKmAAdA
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