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Virgin A340 smacks fence at JFK during pushback

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Virgin A340 smacks fence at JFK during pushback

Old 19th Sep 2015, 17:35
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Virgin A340 smacks fence at JFK during pushback

Seems to be another tug incident. It's reportedly G-VBUG, A340-642, MSN 804.

Virgin Atlantic plane hits blast fence at JFK | New York's PIX11 / WPIX-TV

Plane Wing Hits Fence at JFK; No Injures Reported | NBC New York

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Old 19th Sep 2015, 20:06
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Swiss better than Virgin

Swiss did even better than Virgin only two days ago

Flughafen: Swiss-Flugzeug rammt Passagiertreppe - - landbote.ch
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Old 20th Sep 2015, 00:46
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Cars now have onboard ultrasonic sensors for parking assistance. Why not installed on wingtips ? Or is this a dumb idea ?
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Old 20th Sep 2015, 00:57
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Might be helpful when taxying the aircraft, but less so when being pushed back or towed.

Stay on the line, make sure all ground equipment is behind the clearance lines & if it looks tight, stop & get a wing-walker.
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Old 20th Sep 2015, 06:54
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Looking at the scar on the fence, the wing appears to have been travelling (pivoting?) forwards when it struck.
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Old 20th Sep 2015, 06:58
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Looking at the scar on the fence, the wing appears to have been travelling (pivoting?) forwards when it struck.
It looks like a crack on the fence through which we can see the slanted edge of the building behind.
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Old 20th Sep 2015, 10:03
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So, out of interest, who is ultimately responsible for the plane whilst being pushed by tug?
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Old 20th Sep 2015, 11:15
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Looks like the wing walker may have been updating his facebook page.
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Old 20th Sep 2015, 11:17
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The solution is to stop paying ground personnel peanuts, hire staff with brain cells and ensure that they are adequately trained!
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Old 20th Sep 2015, 11:44
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When I first encountered large swept wing aircraft (VC10) as an RAF technician, I was taught about "swept wing growth". Because of the landing gear geometry and wing plan, in a turn, the wing tip presescribes a larger arc that expected. I wonder if that is still taught to ground handlers.
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Old 20th Sep 2015, 12:12
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There are a couple of simulator manufacturers who produce 3 screen push back simulators. The screen can be customised to show views of the stands and backgrounds at the airport of operation to increase the realism. It is also possible to show the view from above, the side, as well as from the tugs cab.

They can be set up to simulate tug and bar or towbarless push back tractors and aircraft types can also be specified. If you are at an airport that only handles narrow bodies then you wouldn't need an A380 or B777 simulated.

At a GHA I worked at the simulator was used both for initial push back training and also refresher training at stated intervals. There were a couple of stands with awkward push backs and these were obvious candidates to be in the database.

The visuals are good quality and we actually suspended 2 experienced push back drivers from operating tractors because they had some bad habits. They went through re-training and when we were satisfied they returned to the job.

There is some very good modern training available, but how many companies use it I couldn't tell you.
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Old 20th Sep 2015, 12:15
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Originally Posted by aerotransport.org
Cars now have onboard ultrasonic sensors for parking assistance. Why not installed on wingtips ? Or is this a dumb idea ?
Not a dumb idea per se.
But everything that is part of the equipment of an airplane needs to be certified.
More paperwork, more hassles, more money.
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Old 20th Sep 2015, 12:45
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OK gentlemen, yet another robust discussion.

A couple of points that warrant further investigation.

Looking at the scar on the fence, the wing appears to have been travelling (pivoting?) forwards when it struck.
Yes indeed the wing does appear to have been pivoting forward after it struck?

Can anyone gauge from the picture exactly how far and with how much energy said wingtip pivoted against the fence? Perhaps some of our more learned friends can come up with some calculations to determine how long the wingtip was scraped against the fence and with how much force before it came to the attention of either the flight crew or ground staff?

From this we should be able to determine the cumulative hours of log book time in the flight deck and the approximate ages of each flight crew member.

But before I jump to any conclusions...

Also..

There are a couple of simulator manufacturers who produce 3 screen push back simulators. The screen can be customised to show views of the stands and backgrounds at the airport of operation to increase the realism. It is also possible to show the view from above, the side, as well as from the tugs cab.
I have been advocating pushback simulators for years now!

With the available technology there is no excuse to expect that ground staff involved with a push back shouldn't be trained to the highest standard.

IMHO this should involve endorsement on ground equipment which includes a mandatory simulator syllabus using the "3 screen push back simulator" and recurrent training on type to ensure proficiency.

Of course I'd expect only the brightest and best to apply to be trained for such positions and they may presume to be remunerated accordingly... but by mitigating such a risk and avoiding such "fence scrapes" in the future adding only a few dollars to each ticket, well worth the money spent, wouldn't you say?

My two cents..
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Old 20th Sep 2015, 17:01
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. The solution is to stop paying ground personnel peanuts, hire staff with brain cells and ensure that they are adequately trained!
Great idea, but it probably won't happen.
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Old 20th Sep 2015, 17:50
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Hotel Tango:

The solution is to stop paying ground personnel peanuts....

I wonder if you would be so kind as to tell us just how much tug drivers at JFK are paid?
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Old 20th Sep 2015, 18:55
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The solution is to stop paying ground personnel peanuts, hire staff with brain cells and ensure that they are adequately trained!
Been saying this for years. Every new season you get new numpties, because they will not pay to retain good staff. And then they wonder why they shove our wing right through someone else's cockpit. Could have been nasty, that one.

And then you get new Redcaps each season too, which is another hole in the Swiss cheese.

Tate
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Old 20th Sep 2015, 20:47
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Great idea, but it probably won't happen.
You bet it won't! It was just a little sarcasm on my part.

I wonder if you would be so kind as to tell us just how much tug drivers at JFK are paid?
I told you already: peanuts! (Just like most people in aviation today JW)!
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Old 20th Sep 2015, 23:00
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Area where they park is very tight re fencing and room to manoeuvre.....doesn't surprise me this happened.
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Old 21st Sep 2015, 00:52
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Hotel Tango is correct: I blocked in at a station in y 737-400 where the ground ops had been outsourced from our mainline to a local "vendor". Our procedure was to shut down the #2 engine to expedite the baggage offload. That being done,a young ramper placed a plastic orange cone in front of the #1 engine which greedily ingested the orange cone. Orange confetti galore! The engine checked out after MX scoped it, but my concern was for the ramper. He could have just as easily been sucked into that engine.
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Old 22nd Sep 2015, 08:50
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How would they actually fix that. I thought the A340 had a composite wing without any joints.
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