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Delta emergency @ LAX, dumps fuel on school playground.

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Delta emergency @ LAX, dumps fuel on school playground.

Old 14th Jan 2020, 22:01
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bnt
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Delta emergency @ LAX, dumps fuel on school playground.

LA Times report:
An airplane returning to Los Angeles International Airport on Tuesday morning dropped jet fuel onto a school playground, striking several students at Park Avenue Elementary School in Cudahy, officials said.

Delta Flight 89 had taken off from LAX and was en route to Shanghai when it turned around and headed back to the L.A. airport.
I expect the investigation will tell us whether the pilot really had to do that. It's not a common occurrence, thankfully.
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Old 14th Jan 2020, 22:09
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Originally Posted by bnt View Post
I expect the investigation will tell us whether the pilot really had to do that.
I would imagine that an investigation into whether a pilot really had to dump fuel on a school won't take long ...
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Old 14th Jan 2020, 22:27
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Originally Posted by DaveReidUK View Post
I would imagine that an investigation into whether a pilot really had to dump fuel on a school won't take long ...
How does one aim for a school, and not hit an orphanage by mistake?
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Old 14th Jan 2020, 22:44
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The schools are all marked as Waypoints - makes it much easier to hit them accurately.
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Old 14th Jan 2020, 23:04
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And the environmental impact of unburned aerosol fossil fuel hydrocarbons versus a crater with molten aluminum and bio-waste will be explored by a California committee.

The incident hit a nerve in the community. Environmental injustices have long taken place in southeast Los Angeles County. For years, activists and residents fought for the closure of a battery recycling plant in the industrial city of Vernon because it emitted cancer-causing arsenic and lead, a potent neurotoxin, into nearby cities.

It was only five years ago that the plant was closed.

In the 1990s, Park Avenue Elementary School was closed for eight months because tar-like petroleum sludge began to seep up from the ground. The school was built on an old city dump site that contained petroleum-contaminated soil and several pockets of tar-like petroleum sludge.

“Why is it always our communities having to deal with the brunt of these issues?” Alcantar said.

The incident with the jet-fuel dump has raised questions about environmental safety and the flight path over Cudahy and other cities.

“Sadly, our entire community has been adversely impacted by this incident, including dozens of children. I am calling for a full federal investigation into the matter, and expect full accountability from responsible parties,” Cudahy City Council member Jack Guerrero said.


https://www.latimes.com/california/s...-officials-say
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Old 14th Jan 2020, 23:15
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We don't know the nature of the emergency. But the plaintiff attorneys for the kids doused in Jet A will say the pilots could have dumped fuel over the great blue Pacific, Or just landed overweight and damaged the aircraft instead raining it down upon the poor children of East LA. No serious injuries or fatalities, so Delta will settle quietly and quickly to get ahead of it.
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Old 14th Jan 2020, 23:36
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According to FlightAware, DL89 descended below 6000' MSL before turning south on base leg of return to LAX. ADS-B reported altitude at commencement of westbound leg (final approach) was ~4800' MSL. Looks like about 2400' MSL when passing approximate position of school. Whoops! OF COURSE, one would need to know the exact nature of the emergency to determine if this was necessary or not.
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Old 14th Jan 2020, 23:37
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Originally Posted by Geosync View Post
But the plaintiff attorneys for the kids doused in Jet A will say the pilots could have dumped fuel over the great blue Pacific . . .
Yes, they will, and Delta will need a really convincing answer explaining why they could not. I'm sure everyone here has a clear mental picture of the location of LAX and its environs.

. . . Or just landed overweight and damaged the aircraft instead raining it down upon the poor children of East LA.
No, the attorneys won't say anything like that, and you probably know it.

No serious injuries or fatalities, so Delta will settle quietly and quickly to get ahead of it.
Yes, as is appropriate.


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Old 14th Jan 2020, 23:38
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Originally Posted by Airbubba View Post
And the environmental impact of unburned aerosol fossil fuel hydrocarbons versus a crater with molten aluminum and bio-waste will be explored by a California committee.

https://www.latimes.com/california/s...-officials-say
That's hardly, the binary choice, here. Some people really need to get a grip.
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Old 14th Jan 2020, 23:50
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Must have been an very urgent need for it...........otherwise it’s a bit odd to dump there!!

It won’t kill anyone landing overweight....
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Old 14th Jan 2020, 23:51
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From CNN: "Flight 89 experienced an engine issue, requiring it to return to LAX," said Delta Air Lines spokesman Adrian Gee. The flight path of the aircraft was over a very densely populated area. If it is eventually determined that an immediate return wasn't necessary and that the aircraft could have stayed above the minimum recommended altitude of 6000' AGL for the jettison... look for hundreds of people to file claims. I'm sure personal injury lawyers all over L.A. are out scouting for plaintiffs already.

Last edited by cthruit; 15th Jan 2020 at 00:02.
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Old 14th Jan 2020, 23:59
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"Or just landed overweight and damaged the aircraft...".

And then burn up the brakes, blow several tires, run off the end of the runway and kill/injure multiple passengers and crew.
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Old 15th Jan 2020, 00:08
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A plausible scenario is setting fuel jettison to MLW with the intention of reducing landing weight as much as possible, but willing to accept an overweight landing. Then, forgetting to terminate the jettison as the aircraft descended because of a very busy cockpit.
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Old 15th Jan 2020, 00:36
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I did all the adverse-chemical things blokes do when I was younger. Sucking petrol to get a siphon, wiping my hands with thinners. Just couldn't see it would hurt. I'm paying a very heavy price now by being allergic to a broad spectrum of chemicals. May not be connected but I would not want the science tested on children. It is vital they never, not once, breath in a significant mist of aviation fuel.

I suppose there's a reason they descended when they did. I recall on my last ever sim ride refusing a decent unnecessarily early. Altitude is money in the bank, especially on one engine.
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Old 15th Jan 2020, 00:37
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Its a 777-200ER with RR Trent engines and should have no problem with an overweight landing except for needing an inspection following the landing - unless the problem was more than an engine. cthruit's response is the most logical I've read - forgot to quit dumping when they came back for a landing after having dumped fuel in the assigned area. They did manage to dump the fuel on several schools, possibly because at that time of day students were out playing while workers were - well, working, or out commuting. OMG the potential for disaster sucking jet fuel into the engine compartment and onto a hot engine. But then again knowing jet fuel is not all that volatile, the reason it was still in droplets as it dumped on the people below, such a happening extremely remote.
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Old 15th Jan 2020, 00:59
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Listening to the tapes at LiveATC.net...

DL89 LAX-PVG reported compressor stalls on the right engine climbing to 8000 feet high speed approved and said they needed to return to the airport. Was asked if they needed to hold or dump fuel, they said no, they had the engine back under control, it was 'not critical'.

Said they would slow to 280 knots, request 25R for length. SOB's 181, fuel 12+00. When asked if they wanted equipment standing by they said no, uh, I mean yes, we'll plan to pull off the runway. Fuel later given as 209.8 (if you give it as time they always seem to want it in pounds and vice versa is my experience ), approach speed 157 knots.

Vectors ILS 25R, they taxi clear of the runway, call ARFF on 127.85, everything looks good, they taxi to the gate. Brake temps must have looked OK I guess. No mention of a fuel dump or engine failure on final that I hear but as always, the LiveATC.net online scanners miss some transmissions with traffic on other channels.
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Old 15th Jan 2020, 01:07
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Originally Posted by cthruit View Post
A plausible scenario is setting fuel jettison to MLW with the intention of reducing landing weight as much as possible, but willing to accept an overweight landing. Then, forgetting to terminate the jettison as the aircraft descended because of a very busy cockpit.
Seems likely explanation.

How much additional fuel would they have been able to dump if they deliberately continued dumping after going below the min allowed dump height?
I am guessing that it would not be enough to make all that much difference.

At least they (apparently) terminated the jettison before landing, that could have been interesting.

The hazard of an overweight landing is a lot less than a high speed rejected takeoff and as others have pointed out would require an inspection with worst case possibility of a some repairs.
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Old 15th Jan 2020, 01:10
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There's a firsthand account and a pic over at The War Zone over on TheDrive[dot]com.

[Shamelessly plagiarized from Noelcarry's post there.]
I was in my backyard today when I heard an aircraft overhead with its engine screaming at full power, which got my attention as I've never heard that before (I used to work in air ops for 10 years so am quite aware). I looked up and saw that Delta plane flying a bit far south (off normal approach track) and way lower than normal...and dumping fuel (as the pic shows). I got a pic of it. Whole area smelled of jet fuel for about 2 hours afterwards.
It's in the 'Mysterious Navy Cube story.'
I'm still too new to post links.


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Old 15th Jan 2020, 01:23
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Video of alleged fuel dumping below. If that is the aircraft in question, pretty low over a densely popluated area (all of LA fits that bill). Given the population density, one might estimate a million law suits or more as other jump on the legal train.

https://nypost.com/2020/01/14/delta-...anding-at-lax/


Airb, you might be right. It is California after all.

From avherald:
"A Delta Airlines Boeing 777-200, registration N860DA performing flight DL-89 from Los Angeles,CA (USA) to Shanghai Pudong (China) with 181 people on board, was climbing out of Los Angeles' runway 24L when the crew stopped the climb at 8000 feet reporting right hand engine (Trent 892) compressor stalls, they needed to return to LAX."
181 pax?
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Old 15th Jan 2020, 01:30
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The L.A. Times story:

https://www.latimes.com/california/s...-officials-say

Very bad P.R.
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