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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 2nd Dec 2016, 13:38
  #461 (permalink)  
 
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Nobody has yet mentioned the effects of wind. Was this taken into account at the planning stage?
Looking at the FR24 track, it seems as if the cruise was at a slow speed, either to conserve fuel, or because of a strong headwind.
.
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Old 2nd Dec 2016, 13:44
  #462 (permalink)  
 
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Early 80's as ATCO middle east airport, quiet day CAVOK, TMA 707 freighter on long approach.
"10 miles long final"
"Don't have you visual Sir, what's your altitude?"
"10 thousand feet, request one-in-one....exmilitary, just want some practice."

Impressive looking approach ending in a nice touchdown. "We have a steering problem, can you send a tug to get us off the runway?" ...the R/t was calm and composed throughout.

15 minutes later, red faced incoherent copilot in the Tower demanding I report the Captain and call the police re attempted murder........apparently fuel had run out over 20 miles away and the only way was a glide approach. I did what any sensible ATCO would do and explained how to find the Manager's office, thinking, You are lucky to be alive!!!
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Old 2nd Dec 2016, 13:55
  #463 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by ciderman View Post
Sully was ex military and it was this training and background that probably saved the Hudson River passengers. There's military and there's South American military.
Please do not put all cats in the same bag. South americans military are not to be confounded with bolivian military...
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Old 2nd Dec 2016, 13:55
  #464 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Toruk Macto View Post
Which countries military did he fly for ?
He flew for TAM (Transporte Aéreo Militar), the transport wing of the Fuerza Aérea Boliviana.
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Old 2nd Dec 2016, 14:00
  #465 (permalink)  
 
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Notwithstanding the apparent crazy fuel planning, do any of the 146 experts know if this flight was flown at max-range parameters as opposed to a normally faster but less fuel efficient long range cruise (LRC)? What about the hold; was that flown iaw max endurance data for the given alt/weight?

I gather the subsequent glide was not flown at best gliding range speed, possibly due to a complete loss of SA.

It must have been horrific for the crew, but surely they knew a total loss of power was imminent. Perhaps if the weather had been better and with some daylight available their limited SA may have enabled an outcome with considerably fewer fatalities.
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Old 2nd Dec 2016, 14:01
  #466 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by edmundronald
Avianca 52 was written off as pilot miscommunication and lack of assertiveness, but nobody said that calling a fuel emergency may be a career buster if you are a third world pilot flying into NY, because your airline will get blamed for not carrying enough fuel for unlimited holds and then headquarters gets on your case and your career goes xxx. Cultural issues cut both ways.
Agreed, I have always felt the Avianca 52 crew were under a certain pressure to make it work with minimum of fuss.

However that does not relate to this incident as the Captain owned the airline so had no one really peering over his shoulder. Maybe that could be considered one of the root causes?
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Old 2nd Dec 2016, 14:07
  #467 (permalink)  
 
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I allow myself to repudiate some discriminatory comments regarding the Latin American culture and its pilots. It is not only outrageous from the human point of view, but also quite hypocritical. In my humble opinion, those who argue that the cause of this disaster lies in a mere question of customs, not only have a tunnel vision, but also seem to forget the huge number of accidents that have occurred in "civilized countries"; Accidents that after being analyzed turned out to have been caused by the greed of those who hold the economic power. Lack of training, lack of maintenance, pressure at work, to name some of the causes. I fully agree that this accident (according to what is known so far), is a crime that should be punished with all the force of the law, but it does not justify in any way to put all the Latin American pilots in the same bag.
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Old 2nd Dec 2016, 14:08
  #468 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Toruk Macto View Post
Which countries military did he fly for ?
He flew for TAM (Transporte Aéreo Militar), the transport wing of the Fuerza Aérea Boliviana.
...who do not have a stellar record where accidents are concerned...

https://aviation-safety.net/database...php?Country=CP
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Old 2nd Dec 2016, 14:25
  #469 (permalink)  
 
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edmundronald:


Avianca 52 was written off as pilot miscommunication and lack of assertiveness, but nobody said that calling a fuel emergency may be a career buster if you are a third world pilot flying into NY, because your airline will get blamed for not carrying enough fuel for unlimited holds and then headquarters gets on your case and your career goes xxx. Cultural issues cut both ways.
I disagree. At about the same time an American Airlines flight declared an emergency because of low fuel state, and absolutely nothing punitive happened to that crew. I believe there were a couple of others as well. JFK was backed up beyond belief that night.

In the case of a foreign carrier, the FAA does nothing other than report it to the State Department for diplomatic exchange with the foreign country. That is not done often and my educated guess would not have happened had Avianca 52 done a mayday for low fuel.
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Old 2nd Dec 2016, 14:43
  #470 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by ATL-98 View Post
The 9 consisted of Captain, 2 First Officers, 2 Cabin Crew, 2 Engineers and 2 company staff (a Pilot & Dispatcher).
Where does this information come from? Are you including the female CPL as one of the two First Officers or as company staff, and is the flight technician who survived (Erwin T) one of the two engineers?
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Old 2nd Dec 2016, 14:52
  #471 (permalink)  

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Was there a qualified and experienced FO alongside the Captain? If not, the command gradient may have simply been too steep.
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Old 2nd Dec 2016, 14:56
  #472 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by ATL-98 View Post
The 9 consisted of Captain, 2 First Officers, 2 Cabin Crew, 2 Engineers and 2 company staff (a Pilot & Dispatcher).
I do not understand why not to use minimum crew, what are 4. The other are unnecessary weight, nearly 500kg.

If you see any possible threat you have to talk to the passenger, not to let it happen. Even very necessary talk to VIP. This mission was facing increased problems, as the accepted contract was impossible do to bureaucratic reason. Landing permission was rejected for cabotage rights. Planned fuel stop was impossible do to airport closure. I suspect the airline agreed to the alternate plan without check it according actual data.

It was extremely unlucky to have another aircraft in emergency in front of them but weather was actually already there. What if the CB would be over the destination airport? Same result. It is not a good idea to accept this.

I miss good technique of fuel saving, no step climb in the last hour, did they idle descent? Even overweight causes underperformance, fuel consumption might not valid.
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Old 2nd Dec 2016, 14:56
  #473 (permalink)  

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. I believe there were a couple of others as well. JFK was backed up beyond belief that night.
Yup, I was in the stack, next behind Avianca when they did the approach and the missed.
The instant we landed, they crashed.
The Avianca Captain did not speak English but instructed his FO to decleare an emergency but the FO instead requested priority.
Same thing with this accident: It seems they never declared an emergency, but rather priority?
Sad beyond belief.
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Old 2nd Dec 2016, 14:58
  #474 (permalink)  
 
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Crew Roster.
Two PIC's and one SIC.

https://scontent.fsnc1-4.fna.fbcdn.n...19&oe=58B8F727

The plate shows the glideslope intercept as being D4.5 RNG QDR 006.
Glideslope intercept is at 9.5 miles on the IMDE (localizer) or at .6 miles north of the RNG VOR. (At this point you should be tracking the LOC frequency.)

One possibly explanation is when the lights went out they thought they were holding 5 miles south of the runway on the localizer and not 5 south of the RNG VOR. That would the explain the excessive descent from the hold.

Even overweight causes underperformance, fuel consumption might not valid.
This cannot be stressed enough. They may have well done this flight before successfully but not at this weight. The fuel planning may have looked doable (still not legal) without the MGTOW of the aircraft entered into the FMS.

Last edited by cappt; 2nd Dec 2016 at 15:23.
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Old 2nd Dec 2016, 15:06
  #475 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by deniasol View Post
I understand that the PICwas ex-military. Isn't it possible that pilots with such a background, due to the nature of their flight training which involves risky manoevers and missions may be willing to take higher risks than their civilian counterparts? Are there any statistical figures regarding accidents involving retired military pilots?
You have an interesting bias against military pilots. To amplify on some of the responses to you, in general military pilots are trained to:
Plan for weather
Plan for alternates
Plan for fuel reserves
Plan for the unexpected
Know their aircraft thoroughly

However, when it comes to detailed training you'd need to evaluate on a nation-by-nation basis, just as training varies somewhat across borders and between companies.

Your assumption that somehow military pilots who fly transport planes are trained to engage in risky maneuvers and risky flying is erroneous.
Originally Posted by Toruk Macto
Does the military operate with 30 min fixed reserves? Does military transports require an alt ? Would operating an A/C to its max endurance been seen as just operating to the edge of the envelope in his previous job?
This response applies to your post as well.
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Old 2nd Dec 2016, 15:07
  #476 (permalink)  
 
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Till now nothing was mentioned in this thread about decompression.

With all sources depleting the cabin must have started to rise, possibly not enough to trigger already a wrng but maybe was in the mind of the capt to get down quickly and more or less perform an emergency descent. We will know after the cockpit voice recorder transcript will be published (btw, if ever would come available, I would never want to hear the original)

For others disturbed by a general disrespect for non "western" crew, I must say from this part of the hemisphere a looking down on these cultures is western arrogance.
I have audited some "non-western" airlines and I have seen some tremendous professional work been done there, in a very demanding set of conditions, we don't even meet in our worst western dreams.

This accident was with one of those "cowboy" operators, we can find anywhere.

And in the last decade we have seen a few nasty accidents in the western world where poor pilot performance was the key. So don't judge too fast to a whole group.


Accidents do influence a pilot's mind. You wonder if it could have happened to You.
To live with that I read accident reports where I look for the moment in the accident chain where I would have broken it. In some accidents that would have been close to the end, others right at the beginning. So in the end You can sleep on thinking, wouldn't have been me there.
With some dramatic exceptions like the JAL explosive decompression with subsequent loss of control. I have never read someone claiming he would have saved the day in that one.

As far as we kinda "know" till here, the Medellin accident was far beyond I would ever have risked.

Last edited by Double Back; 2nd Dec 2016 at 16:47. Reason: clarified last sentence
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Old 2nd Dec 2016, 15:09
  #477 (permalink)  
 
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Old 2nd Dec 2016, 15:40
  #478 (permalink)  
 
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With all sources depleting the cabin must have started to rise, possibly not enough to trigger already a wrng but maybe was in the mind of the capt to get down quickly and more or less perform an emergency descent.
Possibly but the emergency descent would be down the list after a flamout, they also should have had oxygen masks (quick donning type.)
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Old 2nd Dec 2016, 15:54
  #479 (permalink)  
 
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Possibly but the emergency descent would be down the list after a flamout, they also should have had oxygen masks (quick donning type.)
Exactly, and that would be clearly heard on the radio TX.
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Old 2nd Dec 2016, 15:57
  #480 (permalink)  
 
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Given the lack of instrumentation after the electrics were lost I can well imagine an overwhelming urge to get visual as quickly as possible. Combined with all the other factors (poss inc depressurisation) it would be a calm head indeed that did not panic to some extent - and diving to the VOR at about the normal altitude was a fatal mistake in itself. Even if they had got visual at the VOR at 10,000ft they were going to run out of air half way to the runway no matter hat else happened. If they'd dived at the airport things could have worked out better, but who knows. From what I've read here they seem to have had enough altitude to have made the field easily had a wiser course of action prevailed. The fact is they flew into a position from which a crash was inevitable and that doesn't indicate a lot of calm thinking, something this flight seems to have been without from the start.
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