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734 hard landing @ Exeter

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734 hard landing @ Exeter

Old 19th Jan 2021, 16:33
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734 hard landing @ Exeter

Happened this morning


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Old 19th Jan 2021, 17:52
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That looks nasty !
I'd guess given the age of the aircraft it could well be written off.
At least it wasn't one of their new shiny -800s !
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Old 19th Jan 2021, 20:23
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More photos on AvHerald:
Accident: West Atlantic B734 at Exeter on Jan 19th 2021, hard touchdown
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Old 19th Jan 2021, 20:58
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A photo of the airframe post the accident here shows that the structure is no longer equally supported by the undercarriage. The cargo is still aboard as it is currently too dangerous to remove it.
https://samchui.com/2021/01/19/west-...a#.YAdUty3fWfB
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Old 19th Jan 2021, 21:19
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At first glance, the photos appear to show that the LH inboard flap has dropped.

But look closer and it can be seen that it's not the flap that has moved, but the upper surface of the wing root that has been pushed up by the MLG trunnion trying to break through.
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Old 19th Jan 2021, 21:47
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The fuselage damage on the port side looks as though it has been caused by the leg or its support structure breaking through the upper surface of the wing.
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Old 20th Jan 2021, 08:01
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I am curios to know how many Gs are we talking about here
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Old 20th Jan 2021, 10:30
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Would be interesting...Hard landing checks are carried out for any landing above (I think) 2,1 Gs, but a technician once mentioned to me that even a 3-4G landing (!) probably wouldn't cause major damage on the 737, longer versions being more critical than shorter ones. Would also be interesting as to what happened - weather doesn't look to bad / gusty... [EGTE 190220Z 23010KT 9000 -RA SCT012 BKN040 12/10 Q1009=] - source avherald.
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Old 20th Jan 2021, 11:08
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We're a few miles south-west of Exeter and I can remember hearing the wind hitting the house during Monday night/Tuesday morning so 10 knots seems like a surprisingly low forecast. Looking at FR24 the ground speed on approach was varying fairly rapidly between 111 and 133 knots, so I'm guessing they were dealing with some reasonable gusts. Data also shows a VS of -1,024 FPM over the threshold, but the aircraft was apparently still airborne as it reached the intersection with the old RWY13/31.
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Old 20th Jan 2021, 11:29
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That's a nasty thing to happen to anybody. Hope the crew are OK.
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Old 20th Jan 2021, 12:20
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TGZ let us assume that the FR24 data does not give an accurate touch down point. I do not know if it does or not. But if it was accurate and they were still airborne at the intersection of the old RW31 then that was not the place to be in a 737. Let us see what more data provides...

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Old 20th Jan 2021, 12:47
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Good point. I'm not familiar enough with either the inner workings of ADS-B or what internal processing FR24 do to their data to speculate on how accurate it might be. Thankfully whatever happened there was a safe outcome for the crew, if not the airframe.

Had to take the car to the garage this morning and could see CY on the apron as we drove past the airport - I swear the aircraft is actually tilting several degrees to the left.
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Old 20th Jan 2021, 13:17
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Originally Posted by anxiao View Post
TGZ let us assume that the FR24 data does not give an accurate touch down point. I do not know if it does or not.
It doesn't.

But if it was accurate and they were still airborne at the intersection of the old RW31 then that was not the place to be in a 737.
On closer examination of the data, that seems unlikely. Height over the piano keys (after adjusting for QNH and elevation) was about 40' AAL. There are two subsequent plot points after that, approaching the cross runway, but those indicate 100 feet lower, which is clearly impossible.

It wouldn't be altogether surprising if hitting the runway with enough force to drive the gear up through the wing had also done strange things to the Mode S air/ground logic.


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Old 20th Jan 2021, 13:34
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Human factors, rather than bad weather, is my theory as to the main cause of this accident. The Circadian Rhythm at 02:00 in most humans demands deepest sleep, with lowest body temperature occurring at 04:30. This accident occurred close to the lowest point in the average person’s alertness cycle.

Last edited by Nightstop; 20th Jan 2021 at 19:11. Reason: Comma added for clarity
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Old 20th Jan 2021, 15:55
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Nightstop, is this also valid when flying regularly on nights (as many of these crews do)? This is not a challenge but just a question.
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Old 20th Jan 2021, 16:42
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Pistonprop:

This safety issue has been highlighted ad infinitum. Here is a FSF article on the subject. I’ve no connection with this Company or anyone involved whatsoever.

https://flightsafety.org/hf/hf_mar_apr99.pdf
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Old 20th Jan 2021, 16:52
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This happened on the first night of what would be 5 nights of duty.
First night into the WOCL is the toughest. Incredibly difficult to rest for, weekend off with all the normal home triggers to get you up and going. And if you’ve got kids they’re not even at school at the moment if you’re trying to rest on a Monday. So I’d say human factors would be a very relevant area of mitigation.
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Old 20th Jan 2021, 17:05
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I think it very much depends on the individual. To me, if properly rested previously (i.e. having had enough sleep during normal patterns), the first night is alright. But the second and third nights for me hurt more until the body clock at least adapts slightly.
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Old 20th Jan 2021, 18:28
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I swear the aircraft is actually tilting several degrees to the left
The pics on AvHerald clearly show the aircraft is listing left, mainly due to the fact that the port main undercarriage has been pushed-up through the wing.

Local reports that the airframe is bent to the point that the ULD's could not be pushed off.
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Old 20th Jan 2021, 18:54
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Other reports indicate that loaders were not allowed to board the aircraft with one of the main gears in an unstable state, for obvious reasons.
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