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Taca Incident -- Crashless Streak Broken  
User currently offlineAviateur From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 1352 posts, RR: 11
Posted (6 years 3 months 2 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 8986 times:

I'm not that sure anybody has mentioned it, but last week's crash of a TACA A320 at Tegus was the airline's first-ever fatal accident. That is, or was, a rather impressive record for an airline based in what we call "developing countries."

Below is a partial list of airlines from developing countries that have been fatality-free for at least the past 25 years. The list originally appeared in my May 2nd column at Salon.com, which you can read here:

http://www.salon.com/tech/col/smith/2008/05/02/askthepilot275/

Air Jamaica
Air Malta
Air Mauritius
Air Niugini (Papua New Guinea)
Air Seychelles
Air Tanzania
Air Zimbabwe
Bahamasair
Caribbean Airways (formerly BWIA)
Cayman Airways
Ghana Airways (ceased operations)
Lacsa (Costa Rica)
Pluna (Uruguay)
Royal Brunei
Royal Jordanian
Syrianair
TACA (or so it was)
Tunisair


PS

[Edited 2008-06-03 18:45:10]


Patrick Smith is an airline pilot, air travel columnist and author
42 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineHangarRat From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 633 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (6 years 3 months 2 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 8804 times:

Here's a link to a Reuters story with eight photos.

http://www.reuters.com/article/topNe...SS&feedName=topNews&rpc=22&sp=true

Seems like a case of bad luck for those who died and good luck for everyone else that there was no fire. Was the airline to blame for landing in those conditions?

The article says the airport at Tegucigalpa has a reputation for being treacherous and TACA lost a 767 there a couple of years back with no fatalities. Should the airport be upgraded or closed to jet traffic?

Big fan of the column, BTW.



Spell check is a false dog
User currently offlineMSYPI7185 From United States of America, joined Oct 2007, 710 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (6 years 3 months 2 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 8753 times:

TACA does have an impressive record. But IIRC did not CO have a hand in helping them in various ways (1980's & early 90's)? Also unless I am mistaken the airlines top mgmnt was primarily US citizens, who were working for an airline based in El Salvador. Not to take away from what they have accomplished, especially considering where they primarily fly. Also taking into consideration that TACA has been around a long time.

MD


User currently offlineMSYtristar From United States of America, joined Aug 2005, 6570 posts, RR: 50
Reply 3, posted (6 years 3 months 2 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 8733 times:



Quoting HangarRat (Reply 1):
TACA lost a 767 there a couple of years back with no fatalities.

The TA 767 incident actually took place in GUA.

Also, TA was lucky that TA110 was able to successfully land on a levee in New Orleans back in '88...good piloting saved that one from turning out badly.


User currently offlineHangarRat From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 633 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (6 years 3 months 2 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 8677 times:



Quoting MSYPI7185 (Reply 2):
TACA does have an impressive record. But IIRC did not CO have a hand in helping them in various ways

I think you're thinking of Copa Airlines.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Copa_Airlines

The livery is a close copy of Continental's.


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Spell check is a false dog
User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 25291 posts, RR: 22
Reply 5, posted (6 years 3 months 2 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 8566 times:



Quoting Aviateur (Thread starter):
I'm not that sure anybody has mentioned it, but last week's crash of a TACA A320 at Tegus was the airline's first-ever fatal accident. That is, or was, a rather impressive record for an airline based in what we call "developing countries."

Your information seems to be incorrect. The Aviation-Safety.net database shows two previous TACA fatal accidents, a Vickers Viscount at MGA in March 1959 with 15 fatalities and a DC-6 freighter (ex-USAF C-118A) near MSY in 1988 with 3 fatalities.
http://aviation-safety.net/database/record.php?id=19590305-0
http://aviation-safety.net/database/record.php?id=19880720-1

While TACA's record is good compared to many Latin American carriers, they have also been very lucky in a couple of cases (also in this one) where the outcome could easily have been much worse. In particular, the 767-200 that overran at GUA in 1993 with no fatalities although the aircraft was a writeoff, and the 737-300 in 1988 that glided to a powerless landing on a grass-covered levee near MSY after both engines flamed out in heavy rain and hail and couldn't be restarted.


User currently offlineRFields5421 From United States of America, joined Jul 2007, 7607 posts, RR: 31
Reply 6, posted (6 years 3 months 2 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 8225 times:



Quoting HangarRat (Reply 1):
Should the airport be upgraded or closed to jet traffic?

Part of another thread discussion on the accident.

But, there is not any good way to physically expand the airport. Adding length to the runway does not help because the surrounding terrain would not allow that length to be very effective for landing.

MHTG is a challenging approach, especially if visibility is not very good - but well within the competence of most commercial airline pilots. This has always been a VMC airport - no approaches or landings allowed without good visibility of the runway.

The aircraft which crashed tried the Rwy 20 approach, but low clouds kept them from being able to see/ land on that runway, so they chose to land on the opposite end Rwy 02 with a 10 kt tailwind.

However, based on the still limited usage possible of the runway and the initial reaction - the military base at Comayagua, Coronel Enrique Soto Cano Air Base - MHSC / ENQ - is either handling or preparing to handle jet traffic which used to go to MHTG.

That base is 45nm/ 60km straight line distance across the mountains from Tegucigalpa - which translates into about a 2 hour to 3 hour bus ride.

It will be interesting to see if the current limitation of MHTG to approach Category B aircraft remains in force. The only commercial jet currently meeting Category B standards is the Avro RJ/ BAe series.


User currently offlineMD11747 From Vatican City, joined Mar 2008, 6 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (6 years 3 months 2 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 8063 times:



Quoting MSYPI7185 (Reply 2):
TACA does have an impressive record. But IIRC did not CO have a hand in helping them in various ways (1980's & early 90's)? Also unless I am mistaken the airlines top mgmnt was primarily US citizens, who were working for an airline based in El Salvador. Not to take away from what they have accomplished, especially considering where they primarily fly. Also taking into consideration that TACA has been around a long time.

I can't believe this: There has to be some type of explanation all the time if there is a successful story regarding "us" (the third world).
TACA did try to have some "American" management in 1997 (when I flew for them) when the Grupo TACA new logo started and the airbus were ordered..... this almost made taca become history and they were rapidly replaced by the salvadoreans once again..... You can go ask Ben Baldanza (Spirit CEO), he just had no idea what to do !!!! Yet he's trying to compete in central america now with Spirit.

This airline has an incredible history and one of the highest standards of quality in the world.... and you have to think that "this can't be possible unless there is some "american" influence?

Well, gess what???? There is NONE ......

And NO, taca never got any help from CO ever..... And CO (as most US carriers) don't have what you would call an "immaculate" record. What is so shocking about these airlines doing a good job??? We try to do that here in the third world as well you know..... It's call hard work! And it was not invented by americans.......

Stop watching CNN dude......


User currently offlineOPNLguy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (6 years 3 months 2 weeks ago) and read 7972 times:



Quoting MSYtristar (Reply 3):
Also, TA was lucky that TA110 was able to successfully land on a levee in New Orleans back in '88...good piloting saved that one from turning out badly.

..and that bird is still flying, as N697SW...


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User currently offlineYellowtail From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 6163 posts, RR: 2
Reply 9, posted (6 years 3 months 1 week 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 7655 times:



Quoting MSYtristar (Reply 3):
Also, TA was lucky that TA110 was able to successfully land on a levee in New Orleans back in '88...good piloting saved that one from turning out badly.

Also more amazing that they flew it off the levee too!



When in doubt, hold on to your altitude. No-one has ever collided with the sky.
User currently offlineWA707atMSP From United States of America, joined Oct 2006, 2226 posts, RR: 8
Reply 10, posted (6 years 3 months 1 week 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 7604 times:



Quoting Aviateur (Thread starter):
Below is a partial list of airlines from developing countries that have been fatality-free for at least the past 25 years.



Quoting Aviateur (Thread starter):
Royal Jordanian

Although Royal Jordanian / Alia has been fatality free for the past 25 years, they suffered several bad crashes in the 1960s and 1970s, including a 707 crash in Morocco in 1975 that killed 188, and another 707 crash in 1973 in Nigeria that killed 176.



Seaholm Maples are #1!
User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 25291 posts, RR: 22
Reply 11, posted (6 years 3 months 1 week 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 7363 times:



Quoting MD11747 (Reply 7):
This airline has an incredible history and one of the highest standards of quality in the world.... and you have to think that "this can't be possible unless there is some "american" influence?

Well, gess what???? There is NONE ......

Isn't Lacsa in Costa Rica part of Grupo Taca? Lacsa was originally partly owned by Pan Am.


User currently offlineSJOtoLIR From Costa Rica, joined Jul 2007, 4505 posts, RR: 4
Reply 12, posted (6 years 3 months 1 week 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 7222 times:



Quoting MSYtristar (Reply 3):
TA was lucky that TA110 was able to successfully land on a levee in New Orleans back in '88

The mentioned incident was widely commented in this forum some months backward.
I attached the source again:
http://www.airliners.net/aviation-fo...3606294&s=taca+737+levee#ID3606294

Regards.



"Goin' up to the spirit in the sky"
User currently offlineMarkdirk From Canada, joined Sep 2004, 99 posts, RR: 2
Reply 13, posted (6 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 7070 times:

Isn't TACA nicknamed, "TAKE A CHANCE AIRLINE"!!! it was just a matter of time, third world nations airlines are notorious for bad maintenance and flying ancient aircraft, but whatever. I'll never fly'em, I want to live.

User currently offlinePlunaCRJ From Uruguay, joined Nov 2007, 574 posts, RR: 2
Reply 14, posted (6 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 7054 times:



Quoting Markdirk (Reply 13):
Isn't TACA nicknamed, "TAKE A CHANCE AIRLINE"!!! it was just a matter of time, third world nations airlines are notorious for bad maintenance and flying ancient aircraft, but whatever. I'll never fly'em, I want to live.

I am afraid that isn´t the most appropriate comment. "Take A Chance Airline" was only coined as a joke, because of the slogan, it does not depict reality.

Unfortunately, accidents do occur, and can happen to everyone.


User currently offlineMEA-707 From Netherlands, joined Nov 1999, 4327 posts, RR: 35
Reply 15, posted (6 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 7017 times:



Quoting Markdirk (Reply 13):
it was just a matter of time, third world nations airlines are notorious for bad maintenance and flying ancient aircraft, but whatever. I'll never fly'em, I want to live.

As a flight attendant aged 35-45 you should know better. All the major airlines based south of the USA like TACA, COPA, LAN, GOL, TAM, Mexicana and Aeromexico, have newer fleets then the airline you fly with, and a fine safety record. We don't talk about some Congolese airline flying Let 410s.



nobody has ever died from hard work, but why take the risk?
User currently offlineMarkdirk From Canada, joined Sep 2004, 99 posts, RR: 2
Reply 16, posted (6 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 6971 times:



Quoting PlunaCRJ (Reply 14):
I am afraid that isn´t the most appropriate comment. "Take A Chance Airline" was only coined as a joke, because of the slogan, it does not depict reality.

Unfortunately, accidents do occur, and can happen to everyone.

Duh!

Quoting MEA-707 (Reply 15):
As a flight attendant aged 35-45 you should know better. All the major airlines based south of the USA like TACA, COPA, LAN, GOL, TAM, Mexicana and Aeromexico, have newer fleets then the airline you fly with, and a fine safety record. We don't talk about some Congolese airline flying Let 410s.

I do know better and who do you fly with, lets check out your fleet if you think mine is soo old, you can still have a new aircraft but if your maintenance is bad then not even a new plane is a good plane, duh again!
As a graduate of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, FL with a degree in "Air Crash and Accident Safety Investigation" I think I am more qualified than you to know what is happening with these third world airlines, so lighten up !
 Big grin


User currently offlineAdriaticflight From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2004, 516 posts, RR: 2
Reply 17, posted (6 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 6875 times:



Quoting Aviateur (Thread starter):
Air Malta

Hardly a Third World Airline..


User currently offlineCarmenlu15 From Guatemala, joined Dec 2004, 4758 posts, RR: 30
Reply 18, posted (6 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 6782 times:



Quoting Markdirk (Reply 16):
I do know better and who do you fly with, lets check out your fleet if you think mine is soo old, you can still have a new aircraft but if your maintenance is bad then not even a new plane is a good plane, duh again!

 Yeah sure

Which must be why TA's maintenance base in SAL is FAA certified, and has even serviced U.S. airlines... Sheesh...



Don't expect to see me around that much (if at all) -- the contact link should still work, though.
User currently offlineSnaiks From Panama, joined Mar 2005, 216 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (6 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 6755 times:



Quoting Markdirk (Reply 13):
Isn't TACA nicknamed, "TAKE A CHANCE AIRLINE"!!! it was just a matter of time, third world nations airlines are notorious for bad maintenance and flying ancient aircraft, but whatever. I'll never fly'em, I want to live.

Well, then you shouldnt fly JetBlue as i think they send their aircraft for maintenance in El Salvador


User currently offlineMCOflyer From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 8675 posts, RR: 15
Reply 20, posted (6 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 6746 times:

Carmen,

Doesn't TACA have contract work out to B6 and other airlines. I recall an article saying something like that.

Hunter



Never be afraid to stand up for who you are.
User currently offlineRichierich From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 4260 posts, RR: 6
Reply 21, posted (6 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 6695 times:



Quoting Markdirk (Reply 13):
Isn't TACA nicknamed, "TAKE A CHANCE AIRLINE"!!! it was just a matter of time, third world nations airlines are notorious for bad maintenance and flying ancient aircraft, but whatever. I'll never fly'em, I want to live.

That's really a short-sighted, ignorant comment. As you say yourself in a later post, you have a degree in crash and accident investigation, all the more reason you should be careful what you say and how you say it.

Personally, I think TACA is a safe, reputable airline and while this recent crash is a sad, horrible tragedy, it doesn't take away from the fact that TACA has a good safety record. Thankfully, this crash was also survivable for 98% of the people on board the aircraft. I don't know where you get your information from, but there was nothing "ancient" about the A320 that overran the runway and this type of crash is not usually found to be a result of shoddy maintenance. Perhaps there have been other incidents but in regards to this crash, I think calling them out as unsafe or having poor maintenance is ridiculous.

Quoting Aviateur (Thread starter):
Below is a partial list of airlines from developing countries that have been fatality-free for at least the past 25 years. The list originally appeared in my May 2nd column at Salon.com, which you can read here:

http://www.salon.com/tech/col/smith/...t275/

I'm not sure how accurate some of your facts are either but I like this article! Nicely written and - you can't argue with how you feel!



None shall pass!!!!
User currently offlineLive4peanuts From United States of America, joined May 2008, 18 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (6 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 6656 times:

My brother was an f/a for TACA for 3 years or so before he became an f/o on the 330 with QR. He really liked his job there and had a lot of fun with fellow friends who worked there. The planes were nice and the people were nice as well. A lot of the pilots whom I fly with at US like TA and would fly them down to or in Central America. I have seen various (not just B6) airplanes down there for maintenance, including US airbuses.

User currently offlineCarmenlu15 From Guatemala, joined Dec 2004, 4758 posts, RR: 30
Reply 23, posted (6 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 6612 times:



Quoting MCOflyer (Reply 20):
Doesn't TACA have contract work out to B6 and other airlines. I recall an article saying something like that.

Indeed they do...

Quoting Live4peanuts (Reply 22):
I have seen various (not just B6) airplanes down there for maintenance, including US airbuses.

I knew they did maintenance for America West before the merger, wasn't sure about the current status. They also used to do maintenance for IB back when they had their MIA hub.



Don't expect to see me around that much (if at all) -- the contact link should still work, though.
User currently offlineMarkdirk From Canada, joined Sep 2004, 99 posts, RR: 2
Reply 24, posted (6 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 6515 times:



Quoting Snaiks (Reply 19):
Well, then you shouldnt fly JetBlue as i think they send their aircraft for maintenance in El Salvador

I Don't!!!! And sending our US Aircraft to other countries for routine maintenance also takes jobs away from US citizens, I don't condone that either.. Keep em coming., and lighten up.


25 Markdirk : Well good for you, enjoy your next flight on TACA!!! Happy flying and lighten up!!!
26 Richierich : Wait, you make a snide comment about "Take a Chance Airline" (your words, not mine) and your telling us to lighten up??!! Like I said, for someone wh
27 EZEIZA : Really smart comment. Next time fly AF, so you can overrun the rwy, just like TACA! wow, what a coincidence! Switzerland is not a third world country
28 MD11747 : Markdirk: You should take your aviation degree and leave this forum ......... May you be protected from harms way on your "first world" flights! I hap
29 Markdirk : I got the TACA nickname from another thread "Funny Airline Nicknames", I took it lightly, sorry to step on all your toes, but I'll take your advice,
30 EZEIZA : Of course, but what you said is not the smartest opinon, quite the contrary, and therefore don't expect anyone to agree with you bye bye now ...
31 A380US : thats because CO is a large holder of Copa
32 Richierich : Mark, having a difference of opinion is OK and it is what makes this forum interesting. Howevere, the way you expressed your comments was pure flameb
33 Captaink : I am from the Caribbean, and out two main airlines, aka Air Jamaica and Caribbean Airlines (formerly BWIA) have impeccable records. BWIA was in exist
34 Post contains links SJOtoLIR : With respect to safety regulations, TACA has been previously recognized by several international programs: IOSA Certification [IATA Operational Safety
35 Markdirk : Thank you. But even that "bye bye now" seems very condisending and rude. Thank you for your understanding, and finally I am sorry for any offense's,
36 PlunaCRJ : Was, actually. CO is desinvesting in CM pretty quickly.
37 Aviateur : [Isn't TACA nicknamed, "TAKE A CHANCE AIRLINE"!!! it was just a matter of time, third world nations airlines are notorious for bad maintenance and fly
38 Snaiks : it was a large holder
39 Post contains links Viscount724 : CO no longer have any investment in CM. It had only been about 10% for the past couple of years and they sold that about two weeks ago. http://sev.pr
40 MIAUA777 : It seems while most here would make fun cracks at any of the legacy carriers safety records or the fact that Northwest DC-9's were around before Dougl
41 Post contains links HangarRat : So what's the list of first world airlines that have been fatality free for 25 years? Qantas, and who else? In the states, Frontier and America West,
42 Jetdeltamsy : Having flown inand out of Tegus probably a dozen times, I can tell you it is absolutely one of the most hair-raising places to land in the world. Ver
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