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Australia's Airbus A330 incidents


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June 22, 2009

Article from: Australian Associated Press

Incidents involving Australia's fleet of A330 Airbus aircraft:

Jan 19, 2004 - A newly acquired Qantas A330-300 flying from Melbourne to Perth is forced to make an emergency landing in Adelaide after fumes leak into cabin, with seven crew members and two of the 274 passengers taken to hospital with nausea-like symptoms.

Aug 21, 2005 - Nine people, including two Australians, are injured during the evacuation of 178 passengers from a Perth-bound Qantas jet in Osaka, Japan, after a smoke sensor was activated in the aircraft's hold.

Jan-June 2006 - A wasp infestation among Qantas aircraft, particularly A330s, at Brisbane Airport, causes three flights to be aborted during takeoff as well as a number of flight cancellations.

July 24, 2007 - More than 300 passengers are left stranded in Bali when a Bangkok to Melbourne Jetstar flight is forced to divert to Denpasar Airport after an engine failure.

Oct 8, 2008 - Almost 50 people are injured, some seriously, when a Qantas jet, with 303 passengers and a crew of 10 bound from Singapore to Perth, plunges up to 2,000 metres over Western Australia.

Nov 14, 2008 - A Qantas jet carrying 278 passengers from Sydney to Shanghai turns back after a weather radar malfunction on board.

Nov 29, 2008 - A Qantas jet serviced just days earlier and flying from Perth to Singapore has to turn back after the crew is forced to turn off one of its two engines when an engine oil warning light flashes. Qantas says inspections indicated a fault with the engine starter motor.

Dec 5, 2008 - A Qantas jet becomes bogged at Sydney airport as a towbar holding the aircraft fails and two of the jet's wheels become stuck in the grass beside the taxiway.

Dec 29, 2008 - A Qantas jet flying from Perth to Singapore is forced to return to Perth after the autopilot disconnects at 36,000 feet about 500km northwest of Perth. Air safety authorities say the circumstances were similar to the October incident over WA.

Jan 28, 2009 - An A330 defence aircraft carrying about 80 Australian personnel and supplies to the Middle East is forced to make an emergency landing in Darwin after fumes filled the cabin. Three people were hospitalised and later recovered.

June 9, 2009 - Qantas announces it has received no safety directives for its A330 fleet following the May 31 crash of an Air France A330-200 that killed all 228 people aboard in the Atlantic Ocean.

June 10, 2009 - A fire in the cockpit of a Jetstar A330-300 carrying 186 passengers from Japan to Australia forces the pilot to make an emergency safe landing in Guam.

June 22, 2009 - Thirteen people are injured when a Qantas A330-300 carrying 206 passengers strikes severe turbulence over Borneo on a flight from Hong Kong to Perth.

AAP

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CONTACT US: Were you on the flight or do you know someone that was? Email (online AT theaustralian.com.au or call +618 9326 8300

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Wasp infestation ? Does Airbus use honey in their A330 or how can an incident like this be in any way linked to the aircraft ?

These are reports collected to spook off people who have no idea of the industry. There are a lot of incidents on daily basis that never break the news barrier.

If one reads incident reports, it is easy to see that they are neither uncommon nor in any way more prevalent in one aircraft type than they are in another.

If there is a clear pattern, aviation safety authorities step in much earlier than it ever becomes news for the general public.

For instance this myth of Qantas never having had an accident is just that, a myth. Their 747 overran the runway in BKK and the airframe was deemed a writeoff. However Qantas decided to have it repaired regardless of it actually costing almost as much as a brand new 747 because they didn't want the statistics to show they had to write off an airframe.

Aircraft safety is much more linked to the service practises of the airline that operates them than to either the type or manufacturer.

What the purpose of this so called news is, one can only speculate.

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I have flown many many times on both Airbus (very nice) and Boeing (also nice, as long as not too old). I am happy with either because I know that for the most part the incident reports that we see are just the tip of the iceberg, and would usually be fairly evenly spread across aircraft types.

I tend to think that it's the aurlines themselves that are responsible for the major part of the failures - and much of it can be traced to failures in maintenance, or directly to human error - with only a small percentage of these being airframe failures.

Engine failures, for example, cannot be blamed on the airframe manufacturer as they are made by several other organisations (Rolls Royve, GE among others), so causes of incidents are usually something other than the airframe - which is the bit built by the aircraft manufacturer - the rest is actually kit supplied to fit into it by others.

But I am more disappointed that the third option "Any one as long as they have beer" was omitted... damn it Gav!

:) Greer

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Wasp infestation ? Does Airbus use honey in their A330 or how can an incident like this be in any way linked to the aircraft ?

These are reports collected to spook off people who have no idea of the industry. There are a lot of incidents on daily basis that never break the news barrier.

If one reads incident reports, it is easy to see that they are neither uncommon nor in any way more prevalent in one aircraft type than they are in another.

If there is a clear pattern, aviation safety authorities step in much earlier than it ever becomes news for the general public.

For instance this myth of Qantas never having had an accident is just that, a myth. Their 747 overran the runway in BKK and the airframe was deemed a writeoff. However Qantas decided to have it repaired regardless of it actually costing almost as much as a brand new 747 because they didn't want the statistics to show they had to write off an airframe.

Aircraft safety is much more linked to the service practises of the airline that operates them than to either the type or manufacturer.

What the purpose of this so called news is, one can only speculate.

QANTAS like all Airline's have had incidents, and have NEVER claimed otherwise, however they do claim that they have only ever lost ONE life in an accident, (over 50 years ago, in a Bristol freighter at Sydney airport) That is their claim and that is a fact. I was unaware you had inside information from Qantas re their 747, OR are you guessing again !!!!

Sorry Greer, but you should know by now that the BEER is SOP 555

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Qantas jet in the dark on turbulence risk

Nicolas Perpitch | June 23, 2009

THE inability of radar on a Perth-bound Qantas Airbus to detect ice crystals will be at the centre of an air safety investigation into severe turbulence that threw passengers out of their seats, injuring up to 12 people.

The A330-300 aircraft plunged suddenly over Borneo early yesterday before landing safely at Perth International Airport just before 8am.

"All of a sudden the plane dropped -- I reckon about a 30-storey building -- and there was a hell of a kerfuffle in the plane," passenger Keith Huckstable told ABC radio.

Qantas said crew on the Airbus, which was carrying 206 passengers and 13 crew, were given little notice of the approaching turbulence, four hours after leaving Hong Kong.

Qantas said last night it appeared nothing had gone wrong with flight QF68's systems, and the airline retained confidence in the A330 despite several recent incidents.

Three weeks ago, an Air France A330-200 mysteriously crashed into the Atlantic Ocean, killing all 228 people on board, while last October 70 people were injured on a Qantas A330-300 flying over Western Australia when the plane suddenly lost altitude after an apparent computer malfunction.

Australian and International Pilots Association president Barry Jackson said he had spoken to QF68's captain, Paul Flack, and the aircraft may have hit cloud-associated convective turbulence, which the weather radar could not pick up.

"The radar is designed to pick up moisture; it's not designed to pick up turbulence or ice crystals," Captain Jackson said.

"Around Borneo there is some high terrain and obviously that's probably where the clouds have come from."

After the jet landed in Perth, Captain Flack told passengers convective turbulence was not normally visible to weather radar, which was designed to detect moisture but not ice crystals.

Qantas corporate affairs manager David Epstein also said convective turbulence was likely to have caused the plane to soar 800 feet before falling back to its cruising altitude of 38,000 feet.

Six passengers and one crew member were taken to Royal Perth Hospital suffering neck and back pain after the plane landed. One man reportedly received a cut to the head.

All were released yesterday afternoon.

Passengers likened the experience, which lasted 15-20 seconds, to plunging into a deep hole. Lightning cracked outside, people screamed and those not wearing seatbelts were flung about the cabin.

Michelle Knight was part of a group of 12 people, including six children, returning to Perth from a holiday in Hong Kong.

"It really shook everyone up," she said. "There were things flying everywhere. You just turned around and there were things all over the floor. We saw all the people in front of us all go up at the same time and all go down at the same time. Everyone sort of went sideways."

Another member of the group, Elsie Hudson, said her friend Vicky Richards was one of those injured.

"There was this massive drop and Vicky, who was with us, she didn't have a seatbelt on and she hit the roof, the console, and she actually cracked it and took one of the light covers off," she said.

"She was in a lot of pain in the end, her headache progressed worse and worse and her neck got worse and worse, and by the end she couldn't move."

Passengers received an apology from Qantas and an offer of counselling and the reimbursement of medical expenses. The Australian Transport Safety Bureau will investigate the incident.

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QANTAS like all Airline's have had incidents
For instance this myth of Qantas never having had an accident is just that, a myth

I wonder if you understand the difference between an incident and an accident ? Perhaps you just have dyslexia.

they do claim that they have only ever lost ONE life in an accident, (over 50 years ago, in a Bristol freighter at Sydney airport) That is their claim

They claim they have never lost an airframe in an accident. This is technically true but only because they repaired the airframe which was deemed a writeoff.

This is all public knowledge, not inside information. I don't have to guess anything, neither now nor before. If you could be bothered to Google the issue, you would already know that. Obviously you could not. It's so much easier to just copy/paste biased pieces of information without any understanding of the airline industry to support whatever issues you seem to be having with Airbus.

To get an idea of the accident, these pictures say it all

http://www.airdisaster.com/photos/qf1/photo.shtml

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Qantas jet in the dark on turbulence risk

"There was this massive drop and Vicky, who was with us, she didn't have a seatbelt on and she hit the roof, the console, and she actually cracked it and took one of the light covers off," she said.

This is actually a perfect illustration of why the aircrew tell you to keep your seatbelt fastened even if the sign is off, unless you have to move around the cabin!

When flying thats one rule I always enforce with my kids - for just this sort of occurrence.

It was neither the airline, nor the aircrafts fault, and as they rightly pointed out, the weather radar is not designed to pick up that type of turbulence, although perhaps a more sensitive radar with beter resolution may have been able to pick up the ice-crystals - but the transmitter power required may not be safely possible to use on a passenger aircraft...not sure...I am not a radar specialist.

I just realised that QANTAS aircraft that landed long at Don Meung in 1999 was the Longreach, named after the birthplace of QANTAS in western Queensland. I first saw it when my dads friend and neighbour, who was head of maintenance at the Brisbane Qantas service depot took us to look through it - a long time ago too. The rebuild was a PR exercise that allowed QANTAS to somewhat artificially maintain its record...it was something of a stretch to say it was "only an incident"...

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Greer> The 747 named Longreach is now parked up as a static display, in Longreach

PS The BEER option has now been added :wink:

Aha...so they DID take it out of active servic after the crash..oops...incident...in Bangkok...! Actually thats nice to know...she had served well...and for a long time...I knew a 747 was there (how the hell did they land it on that short runway?) but didnt know which one...

Ta mate!

WOAH! Nearly forgot to say thanks for the BEER OPTION...!!!!! Thanks again! :)

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lol, just gotta love that improvised sun deck they provided!

Looking at the plane sitting halfway down the fairway instead of the runway sure gives a whole new meaning to Longreach.

Talking about that, Longreach is not the name of the plane. It's plastered on all Qantas long haul planes, or at least at that time it was.

The plane involved in the accident was repaired at expense way over reasonable and was taken back into service. I'm too lazy to dig up the registration of it but if I'm not mistaken it is still in use.

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Ops the 747 at Longreach is a 747 - 200, named "City of Bunbury VH - EBQ

Accident description

languages: English Fran├žais Nederlands Deutsch Espanol

Status: Final

Date: 22 SEP 1999

Time: 22:47

Type: Boeing 747-438

Operator: Qantas

Registration: VH-OJH

C/n / msn: 24806/807

First flight: 1990-08-14 (9 years 1 months)

Total airframe hrs: 41151

Cycles: 6002

Engines: 4 Rolls Royce RB211-524G

Crew: Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 19

Passengers: Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 391

Total: Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 410

Airplane damage: Substantial

Airplane fate: Repaired

Location: Bangkok International Airport (BKK) (Thailand) show on map

Phase: Landing (LDG)

Nature: International Scheduled Passenger

Departure airport: Sydney-Kingsford Smith International Airport, NSW (SYD/YSSY), Australia

Destination airport: Bangkok-Don Muang International Airport (BKK/VTBD), Thailand

Flightnumber: 1

Narrative:

The first officer was the handling pilot for the flight. The crew elected to use flaps 25 and idle reverse as the configuration for the approach and landing, in accordance with normal company practice (since December 1996).

At various stages during the approach to runway 21L, the crew were informed by air traffic control that there was a thunderstorm and heavy rain at the airport, and that visibility was 4 km (or greater). At 2240, a special weather observation taken at Bangkok airport noted visibility as 1,500 m and the RVR for runway 21R as 750 m. The Qantas 1 crew was not made aware of this information, or the fact that another aircraft (callsign Qantas 15) had gone around from final approach at 2243:26. At 2244:53, the tower controller advised that the runway was wet and that a preceding aircraft (which landed at approximately 2240) reported that braking action was ?good?.

The Qantas 1 crew noted no effect from the weather until visibility reduced when the aircraft entered very heavy rain as it descended through 200 feet on late final approach. The aircraft then started to deviate above the 3.15 degree glideslope, passing over the runway threshold at 169 knots at a height of 76 feet. Those parameters were within company limits. (The target speed for the final approach was 154 knots, and the ideal threshold crossing height was 44 ft.)

When the aircraft was approximately 10 feet above the runway, the captain instructed the first officer to go around. As the first officer advanced the engine thrust levers, the aircraft?s mainwheels touched down (1,002 m along the 3,150 m runway, 636 m beyond the ideal touchdown point). The captain immediately cancelled the go-around by retarding the thrust levers, without announcing his actions. Those events resulted in confusion amongst the other pilots, and contributed to the crew not selecting (or noticing the absence of) reverse thrust during the landing roll. Due to a variety of factors associated with the cancellation of the go-around, the aircraft?s speed did not decrease below the touchdown speed (154 kts) until the aircraft was 1,625 m or halfway down the runway.

The investigation established that, during the landing roll, the aircraft tyres aquaplaned on the water-affected runway. This limited the effectiveness of the wheelbrakes to about one third of that for a dry runway. In such conditions and without reverse thrust, there was no prospect of the crew stopping the aircraft in the runway distance remaining after touchdown. The aircraft overran the 100 m stopway (at the end of the runway) at a speed of 88 knots, before stopping 220 m later with the nose resting on an airport perimeter road.

The depth of water on the runway when the aircraft landed could not be determined but it was sufficient to allow dynamic aquaplaning to occur (i.e. at least 3 mm). The water buildup was the result of heavy rain on the runway in the preceding minutes, and possibly because the runway was ungrooved.

During the examination of the performance of the aircraft on the runway, it became evident that the flaps 25/idle reverse thrust landing procedure used by the crew (and which was the ?preferred? company procedure) was not appropriate for operations on to water-affected runways. The appropriate approach/landing procedure was flaps 30/full reverse thrust. This had the characteristics of a lower approach speed, of being easier to fly in terms of speed control and runway aim point (for most company pilots), and of providing maximum aerodynamic drag after touchdown when the effectiveness of the wheelbrakes could be reduced because of aquaplaning. Had this configuration been used, the overrun would most probably have been avoided.

As with other company B747-400 pilots, the crew had not been provided with appropriate procedures and training to properly evaluate the potential effect the Bangkok Airport weather conditions might have had on the stopping performance of the aircraft. In particular, they were not sufficiently aware of the potential for aquaplaning and of the importance of reverse thrust as a stopping force on water-affected runways.

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