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Thread: Asiana Airlines Flight 214 (B777) Crash land in San Francisco

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    Senior Member MrDK's Avatar
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    Asiana Airlines Flight 214 (B777) Crash land in San Francisco

    So far 2 confirmed killed, 61 injured and nearly 230 may have been lucky enough to walk away.
    Nothing know yet about the cause but the obvious that the plane for some reason set down short of the runway.

    Asiana Air Boeing 777 crash lands at San Francisco airport | Reuters

    2013-07-06T202423Z_1_CBRE9651KOQ00_RTROPTP_2_USA-CRASH-ASIANA.JPG

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    Member Jack's Avatar
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    ...Seagulls?

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    An island with strange powers ?

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    Senior Member Dodger's Avatar
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    Well if all that cocaine around the plane is anything to go by???, think I've got my cause right there???55555
    geir, Bacon and WarProfiteer like this.
    Custard should be a colour...cos I could then paint over the mess I've just made!!!

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    Senior Member kaptainrob's Avatar
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    Looks like pilot came in short, realised mistake too late, had nose up and tail struck first. Only the 2nd 777 major crash and thankfully most pax walked away, some with hand luggage!

    Cheers, Rob.

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    2 died, 305 survived...!!

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    Senior Member MrDK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dodger View Post
    Well if all that cocaine around the plane is anything to go by???, think I've got my cause right there???55555
    Amazingly funny

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    Senior Member Pablo's Avatar
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    Wow, now the picture is emerging that the electronic beam (glideslope) that normally guides the airplane to the runway was "off" or down for maintenance for RW 28L at San Francisco International.

    That means that the pilots would not be able to hook up the computer controlled autopilot to bring them down safely and on the correct path. I gather that the pilots were having to rely solely on looking out of the front window, to guide the giant plane.

    Even though it was a clear day there (CAVU=clear and visibility unlimited), that sure is a mighty big airplane to be driving by mere eyesight! I mean, it's not a Cessna, or Piper Cub, for crying out loud!

    I just can't believe that the government allows them to "eyeball" a landing, when the electronic beam and autopilot are not working! Probably just trading off some safety for monetary considerations, I'd say!

    I sure hope they don't hang the pilots with a charge of "pilot error", as is usually the verdict.

    I mean given the circumstances (total manual reversion), they did a pretty fair job. They touched down almost on the runway centerline (only about 40 feet right of center). And only 1,500 to 2,000 feet short of the normal (electronically guided) touchdown zone. Not too bad, for such a big bird and by hand huh?

    Seriously though, this is what the piloting profession is turning into...a bunch of button pushing computer programmers, that cannot fly an airplane! And you see it more and more from the airlines of the "developing nations".

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    Senior Member kaptainrob's Avatar
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    Seriously though, this is what the piloting profession is turning into...a bunch of button pushing computer programmers, that cannot fly an airplane! And you see it more and more from the airlines of the "developing nations".
    Unfortunately yes. This is the culture within some Airlines.

    My source suggests these guys (4 pilots in the cockpit) had little or no experience of 'manual' landings and with no ILS system they have failed to (properly) employ other nav aids and/or mis-judged auto-throttle/auto-pilot settings. eg: Engines were at 'idle' during impact which would suggest A/T was operating when it should have been switched off to allow manual full thrust.

    The ILS G/S had been out of service for 3 weeks and other pilots report several 'close encounters' + the flight crew were likely tired and with poor experience of SFO airport approach and ATC commands.

    Lack of ILS G/S at a busy international airport is unforgivable. Other parts of the World it is would result in the shut-down of international flights. Full results won't be known for a year or more but it's likely the pilots will be hung out to dry as they didn't take the option of a go-around.
    Cheers, Rob.

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    Senior Member soupdragon's Avatar
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    From what has been reported I have to agree with Pablo and Rob. The pilots were so wrapped up with the other issues raised by the lack of ILS they forgot to do the most basic thing, fly the plane.

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    Senior Member kaptainrob's Avatar
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    It should be noted that the PAPI -visual approach (vertical positioning) light system was also u/s. Pilots thought they were in for a 'normal' landing right up to the last minute, actually announcing "arrival at.." and over-rode the A/T too late. One engine broke off upon impact and 'flew' ahead under full power.
    Cheers, Rob.

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    Senior Member Pablo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kaptainrob View Post
    Unfortunately yes. This is the culture within some Airlines.

    My source suggests these guys (4 pilots in the cockpit) had little or no experience of 'manual' landings and with no ILS system they have failed to (properly) employ other nav aids and/or mis-judged auto-throttle/auto-pilot settings. eg: Engines were at 'idle' during impact which would suggest A/T was operating when it should have been switched off to allow manual full thrust.

    Actually, if the auto-throttle system had been "on" or engaged, they never would have gotten so slow. It merely chases the "bug" which is set on the airspeed indicator. (presumably set to 137 knots, as the NTSB Chair described)

    Even with the A/T system engaged, you can override it by pushing or pulling the thrust levers.

    It sounds to me like these guys thought that they had engaged the A/T system, but hadn't. Like I said, if the speed fell below the "bug" setting, the thrust levers would automatically advance to maintain the desired speed.

    Quote Originally Posted by kaptainrob View Post
    The ILS G/S had been out of service for 3 weeks and other pilots report several 'close encounters' + the flight crew were likely tired and with poor experience of SFO airport approach and ATC commands.
    I have read that the PAPI visual approach system (precision approach path indicator) for that runway may have been operating sporadically over the past few days. This gives vertical guidance for landing aircraft, in addition to the electronic ILS glide slope. Another aircraft which landed before Asiana 214, had reported the PAPI was working properly though.

    Quote Originally Posted by kaptainrob View Post
    Lack of ILS G/S at a busy international airport is unforgivable. Other parts of the World it is would result in the shut-down of international flights. Full results won't be known for a year or more but it's likely the pilots will be hung out to dry as they didn't take the option of a go-around.
    That's not necessarily correct. ILS systems are routinely shut down for maintenance and tweaking, all over the world. Only when the weather requires the system to be operational, would there be any delays or cancellations.

    Runway 28L at KSFO is over 10,000 feet long and I don't see a "visual" approach and landing there, to be such a difficult task!

    I was speaking "tongue in cheek" on my original posting. Having spent 35 years as a commercial pilot and 27 years with a major U.S. carrier, it was very clear to me early on, that these guys (Asiana 214) had truly "screwed the pooch"!

    Yeah, "pilot error"!

    It could have been very much worse in terms of passenger casualties, as well.

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    Senior Member soupdragon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pablo View Post
    Having spent 35 years as a commercial pilot and 27 years with a major U.S. carrier, it was very clear to me early on, that these guys (Asiana 214) had truly "screwed the pooch"!
    Yeah, "pilot error"!
    So the cockpit voice recorder may be saying "Gear Down, Check, Flaps, Check , Airspeed, Check, oh hang on a minute did you push the button? , well no I thought you pushed it, quick find the checklist for what to do when you forget to press the button" BANG

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    Senior Member Pablo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soupdragon View Post
    So the cockpit voice recorder may be saying "Gear Down, Check, Flaps, Check , Airspeed, Check, oh hang on a minute did you push the button? , well no I thought you pushed it, quick find the checklist for what to do when you forget to press the button" BANG
    The CVR will show exactly was said and the DFDR (flight recorder) will show exactly what was done. They match those two up chronologically and "presto", the story is clear.

    I surmise that the NTSB will conclude that there was too much reliance on automation and not enough attention to flying the aircraft. And, there will be additional factors...G/S inop, PAPI ?, perhaps not recognizing the G/S shutdown early enough for proper planning (NOTAMS), fatigue, etc.

    The "magic" stuff is fine and works well. And the airline companies urge the pilots to utilize it as much as possible ($$$$). But in many applications, there just comes a time when you have to shut it all OFF and fly the airplane manually. There have been several accidents and many more incidents caused by the (inappropriate) obsession with "button pushing" the "magic", and forgetting/losing the big picture!

    Following a couple of these "major" incidents, my company began training the crews on the subject and reinforcing the notion of disconnecting the "magic" and flying manually, when needed.

    I think it's obvious that basic piloting skills degenerate, from the use of too much automation, as well.

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    Senior Member kaptainrob's Avatar
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    @ Pablo. In FLCH mode the A/T may remain at idle. It's a quirk of the 777 apparently well known. My mate is a 777 trainer for Emirates and AirNZ ... been flying 7's for >20 years.

    Yes, there are some reports of PAPI being operational ... until 214 knocked it out? Fewer excuses for the flight crew if that is that case huh?

    I'm not a airplane driver, just an aviation enthusiast, so I bow to your superior knowledge.
    Cheers, Rob.

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    Senior Member MrDK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pablo View Post
    Following a couple of these "major" incidents, my company began training the crews on the subject and reinforcing the notion of disconnecting the "magic" and flying manually, when needed.

    I think it's obvious that basic piloting skills degenerate, from the use of too much automation, as well.
    ... and come next month it will be 25 years for that airline without a crash fatality

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    Senior Member Pablo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kaptainrob View Post
    @ Pablo. In FLCH mode the A/T may remain at idle. It's a quirk of the 777 apparently well known. My mate is a 777 trainer for Emirates and AirNZ ... been flying 7's for >20 years.

    Yes, there are some reports of PAPI being operational ... until 214 knocked it out? Fewer excuses for the flight crew if that is that case huh?

    I'm not a airplane driver, just an aviation enthusiast, so I bow to your superior knowledge.
    I am not familiar with that particular anomaly.

    However, the FLCH (flight level change) mode is primarily utilized for enroute changes, and very limited terminal area useage. And most certainly, it is never used in an "approach" configuration.

    It can be used however, in a missed approach scenario (go around), provided the proper missed approach altitude is selected beforehand (standard procedure). The correct procedure though, is to engage the "go around" mode. (does basically the same A/T function, but with more pitch and lateral guidance)

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    Senior Member Pablo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrDK View Post
    ... and come next month it will be 25 years for that airline without a crash fatality

    Shhhhhhhh!

    Don't put a jinx on Lars. 555

    (You know these things come in 3's)

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    Senior Member kaptainrob's Avatar
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    Could FLCH mode be seen as flying 'manually' to these guys ... with no ILS and a high ROD?

    @ Mrdk: Many years ago I did aircrew flight training safety checks and I can tell you, there are many 'near miss' incidents which go unreported ... or used to.
    Cheers, Rob.

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    Senior Member Pablo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kaptainrob View Post
    Could FLCH mode be seen as flying 'manually' to these guys ... with no ILS and a high ROD?

    @ Mrdk: Many years ago I did aircrew flight training safety checks and I can tell you, there are many 'near miss' incidents which go unreported ... or used to.
    Not really.

    FLCH mode only works when the autopilot and auto throttles are engaged. These guys were clearly "hand flying" the approach it seems. I can't imagine any way to do otherwise?

    I believe they thought the A/T system was active, and it was not. There's what, about a 5 or 6 second delay from when someone called out the "low speed" warning until a "go around" command was given...then 1.5 seconds to impact.

    My guess is they recognized they were below speed and were confused...maybe trying to reset the speed bugs, to get the thrust levers to respond, or something? (thinking the A/T was engaged)

    Like I said before, too much reliance on automation!

    Just shove the handles forward FFS!

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