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Jet goes down on its way to Medellin, Colombia

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Jet goes down on its way to Medellin, Colombia

Old 30th Nov 2016, 23:46
  #241 (permalink)  
 
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The Start Master trick only gets you essential DC, not AC, and is of limited use. It gets you OAT, cabin and duct temp indications, left windscreen wiper, both engine displays (not much use in this case), engine oil indicators, and feed tank and wing tank fuel quantity.

The transponder #1 is powered by ESS AC, so you wouldn't have that.

As for descent rate, yes you can get high rates of descent, but you need green hydraulics for the airbrake which would require a running engine.

Book figures for glide is 2.5:1 clean and 1:1 with gear down.
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Old 30th Nov 2016, 23:46
  #242 (permalink)  
 
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The FA reported gradual loss of light in the cabin.
Does that sound like battery power running down?

And if they got to nil battery power would they have any instruments at all?
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Old 30th Nov 2016, 23:52
  #243 (permalink)  
 
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No battery means they'd have nothing at all. But they had the VHF comm so must have had battery.
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Old 30th Nov 2016, 23:58
  #244 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by PastTense View Post
While I understand that the pilot faced legal repercussions for stating a fuel emergency, what prevented him from stating some other type of emergency: for example a medical emergency--the pilot was having a heart attack.
Because that also requires an external investigation.

Listen to the ATC audio...she has one priority aircraft before LMI declares emergency.....she pulls the LCO off the approach whilst giving avoiding action to AVA, then LCO needs another turn to avoid wx....nightmare scenario.
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Old 1st Dec 2016, 00:11
  #245 (permalink)  
 
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Question:

Given the posts describing how few instruments, etc, likely would have been powered while operating on emerg battery power --

Would the FDR and CVR have continued to be powered, along with the microphones and other systems needed to transmit information to those recorders?
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Old 1st Dec 2016, 01:01
  #246 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Magplug View Post
@Sidestick... You don't appear to understand the concept of using an en-route alternate to reduce contingency (or statistical contingency) fuel.

It is not a shady practice and is written into most EASA Ops Manuals. The entire amount of Contingency fuel may be used at the Captain's discretion any time after dispatch.

Magplug, I do understand and have no problem with RCF (or whatever it is called in different parts of the world) - if it is in the ops manual and done properly.

If you have a careful look at my post (and the one I have quoted), I was talking about a 'trick' advocated by some, whereby you nominate an en-route alternate as your destination in the FPL and your destination as your alternate. Then, once in the air, you declare to 'divert' to your destination. This is not the same as RCF procedure.
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Old 1st Dec 2016, 01:18
  #247 (permalink)  
 
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ATC

having listened to the YOUTUBE ATC tape a couple of times it seems to me that the lady ATC is one of the unsung heroes of the situation. Ice cool and utterly in command of an increasingly complex situation. Poor lady who must be suffering greatly now through no fault of her own
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Old 1st Dec 2016, 02:32
  #248 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by AerocatS2A View Post
The Start Master trick only gets you essential DC, not AC, and is of limited use. It gets you OAT, cabin and duct temp indications, left windscreen wiper, both engine displays (not much use in this case), engine oil indicators, and feed tank and wing tank fuel quantity.

The transponder #1 is powered by ESS AC, so you wouldn't have that.

As for descent rate, yes you can get high rates of descent, but you need green hydraulics for the airbrake which would require a running engine.

Book figures for glide is 2.5:1 clean and 1:1 with gear down.
You're correct on the Xpndr. Does not function w/o AC. I'll edit my previous posts.

Essential DC is what I should have specified You're correct.
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Old 1st Dec 2016, 03:23
  #249 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by RV8GGRVy View Post
having listened to the YOUTUBE ATC tape a couple of times it seems to me that the lady ATC is one of the unsung heroes of the situation. Ice cool and utterly in command of an increasingly complex situation. Poor lady who must be suffering greatly now through no fault of her own
Indeed, an example for all, and it's good to see at least one person here was at the top of their game. Absolute professionalism. I hope she's being looked after well, from my experience of this part of the world I have no doubt she is.
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Old 1st Dec 2016, 03:37
  #250 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by plhought View Post
You're correct on the Xpndr. Does not function w/o AC. I'll edit my previous posts.

Essential DC is what I should have specified You're correct.
If the transponder had been powered/working, and ATC had been able to locate the aircraft, could the situation have been salvaged (in other words, could they have been directed to the airport and made a successful landing)? If so, would it be worthwhile to provide some sort of battery backup power to the transponder?
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Old 1st Dec 2016, 06:14
  #251 (permalink)  
 
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Columbian ATC

The gal who was running ATC deserves a medal for her cool, calm and professional handling of this dual emergency.

Good on ya, girl.
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Old 1st Dec 2016, 06:58
  #252 (permalink)  
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Maybe not a medal , but recognition . Indeed she did very well under pressure.
But in the MDE environment (High terrain area/airport/weather/old jets/shady airlines operating there , etc..) she must have had good training .
I hope they have CISM in place in Columbia because post traumatic stress is not easy to go away if you are on tour own..
Many ATCOs here feel for her...and wish her well.
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Old 1st Dec 2016, 07:03
  #253 (permalink)  
 
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The last 6 1/2 minutes of the flight

Hello all,

I am not a pilot and will only post on this forum based on the evidence available so far. Don't want to speculate and will only focus on the accident investigation.

Listening the ATC recordings from the W Radio link posted by Bubba it can be heard that the LMI293 flight declares a fuel emergency 6:26 minutes (all times approximate) before impact while at FL210 and requests priority to land. The ATC operator tells him that she has to bring the flight down from that level and warns about traffic ahead. Approximately 4 minutes before impact advises the flight again about traffic which they acknowledge from their TCAS while crossing FL180. The flight reports again some 30 seconds later crossing FL160. After that contact the ATC operator gets busy redirecting other traffic, namely two Avianca and a LAN Colombia flights. Around 1:30 minutes before impact LMI293 reports total electric failure without fuel and asks for vectors. ATC reports she lost him from the radar. 1 minute before impact LMI293 reports heading 350. 20 seconds to impact the flight reports altitude 9000 ft and asks for vectors. That is their last contact, seconds later they crash.

The pilot can be heard somehow calm while at FL210 but progressively becomes anxious as things continue to unfold.

It would be very important to listen to any recordings about the exchanges between ATC and the crew at least 30-45 minutes before impact to get a clearer picture of how was the flight being handled considering the low fuel situation.

Hope this helps.
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Old 1st Dec 2016, 07:29
  #254 (permalink)  
 
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You do have the advantage of Spanish as a native tongue here - does he really declare a fuel emergency? To formally declare an emergency, the "Mayday mayday mayday" call would be necessary.

From the subtitled ATC recordings I have been able to find, I have gathered that he requested priority because of a "fuel problem" (in that video at about 0:20). This is not a declaration of emergency and would be understood by controllers (at least around here) as a heads-up that they are approaching minimum fuel. At their flight planned destination, this would be alternate fuel (to get to their nominate alternate) plus final reserve (usually 30 minutes) left in the tanks.

Had they declared emergency earlier as they should have, possibly stating how much endurance they have left, it would have been a trigger for the controller (and with regards to her, I agree with the previous posters that she sounds like a true professional and hope that she will get the support she deserves) to get the other aircraft out of the way to get the LAMIA in ASAP. The outcome may very well have been different in that case. But as it sounds, they kept that vital information from the controller right until the point where the tanks were empty and the engines were flaming out.
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Old 1st Dec 2016, 07:49
  #255 (permalink)  
 
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@ Tu.144

I do not know how things are done in Colombia, but here, we have to declare "Minimum Fuel" when it is to be foreseen that, following the present cleared route, fuel on landing will be less than Alternate Fuel plus required final reserve (30 minutes in most cases)
Wrong. "Minimum Fuel" is declared when, having commited to land at a specific aerodrome, any change to the existing clearance to that aerodrome may result in landing there with less than planned final reserve fuel i.e. 30 minutes remaining.
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Old 1st Dec 2016, 07:49
  #256 (permalink)  
 
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You do have the advantage of Spanish as a native tongue here - does he really declare a fuel emergency? To formally declare an emergency, the "Mayday mayday mayday" call would be necessary.
No - he doesn't declare a Mayday - just a fuel emergency. Hence the other aircraft on approach continue to request vectors and descents, taking up the time and attention of the controller.
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Old 1st Dec 2016, 08:22
  #257 (permalink)  
 
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ICAO on minimum and emergency fuel

http://www.ifalpa.org/downloads/Leve...ncy%20fuel.pdf
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Old 1st Dec 2016, 08:27
  #258 (permalink)  
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The crew never declared emergency , they just requested priority for approach because of a fuel problem. ( sollicitamos prioridad para la approximacion...problemas de combustible"
A huge difference for a controller and especially if you are dealing with a diversion with a similar request at the same time ( the Viva Columbia)
Declaring emergency as soon as the reserve was gone would have probably saved their day , got a direct much earlier and eliminate holding.
Avianca 52 all over again ...(for those old enough to remember, for the others, go to Google )
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Old 1st Dec 2016, 08:28
  #259 (permalink)  
 
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Had they declared emergency earlier as they should have, possibly stating how much endurance they have left, it would have been a trigger for the controller to get the other aircraft out of the way to get the LAMIA in ASAP. The outcome may very well have been different in that case. But as it sounds, they kept that vital information from the controller right until the point where the tanks were empty and the engines were flaming out

That's about it in a nutshell. I really feel for that controller.
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Old 1st Dec 2016, 08:33
  #260 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by pax britanica View Post
I feel for the controller-poor woman. What a nightmare-two fuel emergencies a tricky approach and bad weather -sounds like she does very well and still the 146 goes down , scar her mentally for life I would think and I hope she gets over what has to have been a harrowing experience.
I also feel for the controller. The Viva Colombia aircraft did not declare an emergency. It diverted to Medellin for a precautionary landing when a warning light came on in the early stages of a flight from Bogota to San Andres. I have not read anywhere that there actually was a problem with the aircraft, although it did overnight at Medellin, because continuing would have meant the pilots exceeded the maximum hours allowed on duty.
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