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New Evidence: AF At Fault In Concorde Crash  
User currently offlineRepublic From Canada, joined Dec 2012, 0 posts, RR: 0
Posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 5102 times:

Sat, 07 Apr 2001

Air France blamed for Concorde crash
Posted Fri, 06 Apr 2001

A spokesperson for the French carrier Air France said Friday that the company would not comment on a new report blaming last July's fatal crash of one of its Concordes on a faulty repair job.

Jean-Claude Couturier told Deutsche Presse-Agentur that the company had learned of the report from journalists and had known about it "for several weeks".

"We will not comment on the report," he said, adding that opinions differed on the competence of the three aviation experts who had drawn it up.

On Thursday, France 2 television reported that the study has been presented to the magistrate investigating the crash, which killed 113 people.

The report claims that during a July 21, 2000, overhaul of the supersonic jetliner, mechanics failed to replace a crucial part in the plane's landing gear.

As a result, the left front part of the landing gear overheated as the Concorde sped down a runway at Charles de Gaulle airport four days later, causing it to break apart and provoking a chain reaction that resulted in the fatal accident.

According to France 2, the plane had completed three flights with the defective landing gear before the accident occurred.

Prior reports by the French Office of Accident Investigation (BEA), which is leading the crash investigation, said that the Concorde rolled over a metal strip that fell onto the runway from another plane, causing a tyre to burst.

Fragments of the tyre then struck the fuel tank, causing a substantial fuel leak and fire. The Concorde crashed into a hotel and exploded less than two minutes after take-off, killing all 109 people aboard and four people on the ground.

Air France and British Airways are currently testing new tyres and a kevlar lining for the Concorde's fuel tanks in the hope of preparing the plane to fly again later this year.

The world's fleet of 12 Concordes has been grounded since mid-August, when French and British aviation authorities suspended the plane's certificate of airworthiness.

Yet another opinion. Continental can certainly use this investigation to help defend its case, or at least cast doubt on AF's claim.


49 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
User currently offlineSingapore_Air From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2000, 13756 posts, RR: 18
Reply 1, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 4872 times:

Oh dear that is bad.

However, on a personal note, I still blame for the most part Contienntal Airlines, as it was their metal piece, that triggered the version of events.

Anyone can fly, only the best Soar.
User currently offlineSingapore_Air From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2000, 13756 posts, RR: 18
Reply 2, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 4841 times:

I fyou want to chat go to www.airliners.net/chat and log on as wishihadalife. Not here please.

Yes resentment and if you want to start an SQ006 post then do it somewhere else. Not here.

Anyone can fly, only the best Soar.
User currently offlineRyanair From United Kingdom, joined Jul 1999, 654 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 4797 times:

People in Glasshouses......

I think it's hard to justify AF's weaker safety stance, compared to BA (ie. the protectors BA has and AF didn't).

I wonder how reputable this report is, although AF throwing doubt on this seems a weak but hard to refute suggestion, which makes me suspicious.
Doesn't mean it's true though, everyone knows for the sake of courtrooms experts are often dragged out for one side to say "white", with another equally qualified person for the other saying "black".

Just some ramblings of mine.

User currently offlineWpr8e From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 4783 times:



Singapore_Air, Please state some facts that links the CO metal piece to the accident. Good luck b/c there isn't any.

User currently offlineIkarus From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 3524 posts, RR: 2
Reply 5, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 4781 times:

This development means that for the first time, this crash might be justifiably seen as "someone's fault". The debris on the runway could not be blamed on anyone (Sh*t happens and cannot be completely prevented) - But a maintenance error could be realistically blamed on the airline and its mechanics. I still doubt it, though.



PS: On second thought, one might blame this accident on the shoddy design of the aircraft - a plane crashing because of a punctured tire is just not acceptable.

User currently offlineSingapore 777 From Australia, joined May 1999, 1032 posts, RR: 3
Reply 6, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 4774 times:

Just ignore him. It's doesn't hurt to have a laugh sometimes doesn't it?

Please state some facts which links the SQ aircraft to this accident and good luck because there isn't any...

User currently offlineWestern737 From United States of America, joined May 2000, 489 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 4747 times:

I still considered it as freak accident. Would I be in trouble if my car dropped a muffler and struck other vehicle?

User currently offlineSingapore_Air From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2000, 13756 posts, RR: 18
Reply 8, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 4749 times:

Wpr8: You want an argument. Well voilà!

IATA states that any debris from an aircraft (in this case a DC-10), is the responsibility of the owner of the aircraft (Continental Airlines, United States of America).

That's what my post is based upon. If you wanted to have a go at me. You could have at least had the courtesy to e-mail me privately.

Oh, and I am aiming for higher aspirations that what you have said.

Also, considering that you haven't added anything remotely connected to the post makes your post completely irrelevant and is taking up space that could have been used by users which have something to contribute to this post.

With the new evidence, it seems that AF had a much bigger part to play in the crash, however IMO, the bulk of the blame remains on the metal. I don't really care if CO gets sued or not. The piece of metal caused the events leading to the crash.

Good enough for you Wpr8? Thought so.

Anyone can fly, only the best Soar.
User currently offlineWpr8e From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 4731 times:

Hate to tell you buddy but your post proves NOTHING!

IATA may state that, but where is your evidence that the CO part fell off that airplane which then is responsible for the crash of the Concorde. That has not been proven by anyone not least yourself.

Your "IMHO" shows ignorance and nothing else.

See you at check-in

User currently offlineWidebody From Ireland, joined Aug 2000, 1152 posts, RR: 8
Reply 10, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 4695 times:


The fact that Continental admitted the piece was missing off their aircraft, the fact that it took off 4 minutes before Concorde, and the fact that the gash in the tyre matched the length of the piece of metal.....that for me links Continental to the crash.....

User currently offlineGordonroxburgh From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2000, 550 posts, RR: 19
Reply 11, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 4694 times:

I may stand corrected on this one but:

The BEA report in Jan 2001 stated that it had been found that this spacer part was missing, so nothing really new.

The feeling is that the maximun damage it could cause would be to cause the gear to skew by 3 degrees. this would provide excessive wear and heating but not been the main casue of the accident.

Running over a piece of titanium would cause the slashing and bursting of any A/c tyre.

it just so happend that the slash caused the tyre to bust into a big chunk which hit the fuel tank, due to the design of Concorde. The tank burst and the fuel caught fire.

I would have though they would have found it was missing fairly soon when the found the wear levels on the tyres.


User currently offlineMr. 717 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 4695 times:

AF is has a major problem now! This now will help Continental! I think AF is at fault! BAC is also at fault! If a peice of meteal hit a Boeing plane nothing would happen but a blown tire! When it hit the Concorde the tire blew and the fuel line inside the wing was cut to! BAC will have to put new sheet meteal on the wing that is stronger to even have a hope of flying again! The concorde will also need a new flight deck for me to fly it! (if I had the money and the plane was flying!)

User currently offlineCedarjet From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 8630 posts, RR: 53
Reply 13, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 4670 times:

Singapore_Air, you really are an idiot. Bits fall off airliners all the time - inspection covers, small panels, even gear doors. Runways in some parts of the world have debris on them, CDG is better than most in sweeping the runways three times a day. Airliners are not supposed to go down in a fireball because of a burst tyre. The alleged piece of CO metal didn't go anywhere near the fuel tanks in any case, it was pieces of rubber that caused the holes.

Anyway, to prove what a tenuous grip on reality you have, may I remind you of the time you went off at a forum member because they referred to your beloved SQ as "Singapore Air" - what's your name again?

Get a life!

fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
User currently offlineSingapore_Air From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2000, 13756 posts, RR: 18
Reply 14, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 4661 times:

No YOU GET A LIFE. My name is Singapore_Air as Singapore Airlines doesn't fit. If you have a problem with the length of user names go to Johan and maybe he'll change the length of the user names column in the forums.

However, I have come into some information I hadn't considered before. I remember news reports saying that CDG was having a fire drill and the airport couldn't check the runway at the time. Therefore, the debris would have been missed. In that respect, I think that shifts some of the blame of AF / CO and some onto the CDG Airport Authorities.

And Wpr8: I refer you to the factually correct post of "Widebody".

Anyone can fly, only the best Soar.
User currently offlineGordonroxburgh From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2000, 550 posts, RR: 19
Reply 15, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 4666 times:

not earth anyway.

who is BAC? possibly you mean BA : British Airways

I would not want to get on a Concorde with additional metal shielding, not stong enough, although I would prefer to get on one with the kevlar fuel tank linners they are putting in!!!

have you ever flown in a 737-200, DC9, DC10, 727, 747-200 etc.. if you have I hate to tell you that the concorde cockpit is still more advanced , or at least at the same level as them. Theses model make up more that half of the aircraft flying around the world today.

If a boeing was fitted with a similar type tyre it could burst in a similar way and cause all sots of damge in the landing gear bay, eg elctrics and hydraulics, in fact if you search through an accident database you will find it has happend on many an occasion to your boeings.

On yeh... and wasn't it a fuel tank rather than a fuel line that failed?

Does Mr. 717 work for a tabliod newspaper? 'cause nothing he ever say is ever correct!!! maybe he should just shut up and give us all peace as I have never seen him add anythig construction to a discussion.


User currently offlineFP_v2 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 16, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 4638 times:

I blame the capitan, if he had an engine failure + fire while still on the runway he should have attempted to stop the aircraft even though he was pased v1. Even if he had sucesfully climbed out past paris he would still have to fly to the ocean to dump the fuel. Any sensible person would have realized that there wasn't nearly enaugh time to do all that when you already had half the wing engulfed in flame while on the runway. This case simply proves that "standard procedures", do not always apply and that pilots need to make their own decisons when it comes to unique emergencies.

User currently offlineCapt.Picard From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 4632 times:

Given my understanding of the facts, I personally point my finger of blame at Concorde's Design.

The fact that;

1) New Tyres & a Kevlar lining for the fuel tanks are being fitted

2) Concorde's certificate of AIRWORTHINESS was suspended

seems to me to indicate a flaw in the design somewhere... (not to be confused with Concorde itself being a flawed design-which is NOT what I am saying).

As someone said above, it seems strange that a tyre burst should be able to set off a chain of events which ends in the plane CRASHING WITH TOTAL LOSS OF LIFE.

User currently offlineWidebody From Ireland, joined Aug 2000, 1152 posts, RR: 8
Reply 18, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 4617 times:


From what I understand, the crew didn't know there was a fire until the aircraft was in the air.....no chance of gettin' the aircraft back on the runway at that stage.......

User currently offlineGreg From United Kingdom, joined May 2005, 0 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 4595 times:

Well at least the Air France tragedy was an actual accident.
Not the result of gross negligence by the pilot--as is the case in SQ006.

User currently offlineSingapore_Air From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2000, 13756 posts, RR: 18
Reply 20, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 4591 times:

Now that was a personal attack, using reverse psychology, for me to write some long-wnded article for you to explain SQ006. Well I won't. And your just Stupid to be frank , to even bring it into this post. Why don't you sling yer hook, and if you want to discuss SQ6, create a new post and stop trying to create a war.

I think it is interesting however, the differences between the BA and the AF Concordes. Remember that BA reinforced the wing a little, after a spate of tyre accidents earlier in the decade. However, Air France didn't do this. Could this have prevented the traredy?

Anyone can fly, only the best Soar.
User currently offlineOPNLguy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 21, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 4592 times:

One of the things that's always amused me was a couple of email taglines I once saw. The first was "Every absurdity has a champion to defend it" and the other was "A conclusion in search of supporting facts."

One of the fallacies about aviation safety in general (and airline accident investigation in particular) is the apparent fixation on a singular "probable" cause, seemingly to the exclusion of other "causes" (i.e. contributing factors). Pretty much everyone knows that numerous things usually have to go wrong before an accident occurs, yet often times the "probable" cause is deemed to have been the "last, best chance to have prevented the accident." Put another way, "who pulled the trigger" while seeming to ignoring the context of which person(s) took the gun out of the locked drawer, loaded it, cocked it, and then left it where the toddler could get their hands on it.

The media especially suscribes to this tendency, since there's then a single villain thus assigned (often simplistically), and one then doesn't have to get bogged down in researching/reporting the complex technical inter-relationships of how things *really* work. They get in, get the story (or what they "think" the story is) and then get out, and on to the next "newsworthy" item. Hey, if it bleeds--it leads... McNews at 11....

In the case of the Concorde accident, (and along with the above, this is all just MHO), I don't think that CO was totally responsible. Yes, it supposedly was their DC-10 part on the runway, and yes, as such they're responsible for it being there, but it's not as open-and-shut as that. That said (and the Paris airport folks' failure to detect/remove this foreign object from the runway notwithstanding) airline type aircraft should be able to withstand impacts with stuff that they'll commonly see in everyday operations. Tire failures (regardless of cause) are one of them.

If, say a 737 or DC9/MD80 aircraft has departed immediately after the CO DC10 (instead of the Concorde) and struck the metal strip with a main gear tire, it too would have had tire problems. Both the 737 and DC9/MD80 types would have experienced damage to the underside of the wings/flaps, and the DC9/MD80 might have also experienced an associated engine failure from ingested debris. Whether or not either type of aircraft would have experienced damage to the underside of the wing sufficient to compromise their own fuel tanks is speculative. However, one *can* go back and look at nearly 40 years of operational history for these types and look at all the tire failures and the damage they've caused, i.e. whether or not compromised fuel tanks had occurred. Based on the accident records of these two aircraft types, I'd say they look pretty good, and the aircraft can withstand some commonly experienced stuff that causes tire failures and their aftermaths.

Now consider the Concorde, more precisely, its design and construction. (Please, no Boeing vs. Airbus debates...) Previous history of Concorde tire/wheel/brake problems would, I think, indicate a higher degree of intolerance of the aircraft being able to withstand collaterial damage. The press report of the Dulles-Paris (1979?) of the F/O coming back in the cabin after takeoff to assess the problem (hole in the wing with escaping fuel) and said F/O exclaiming "Mon Dieux!" (My God) would seem to indicate a pretty serious situation. Neither would it be the only one in the Concorde's history. How does this compare (rate of fuel tank compromises versus cycles flown) with other types of aircraft? Did the FAA/NTSB (and their French/English counterparts) do everything they could have done to mitigate the risk(s)?

It was a very sad accident, and the media coverage (including some stunning photos) of the demise of a French national symbol (akin to our Shuttle Challenger) lends itself to the public's demand for a simplistic "who's responsible, and I wanna know NOW" attitude.

If the Concorde can be modified to be more failure-TOLERANT (not failure-proof), and such modifications are not "band-aids" or "window dressing" to appease the masses (or cost-conscious operators), I'd get on a Concorde in a second, given the chance (and free ticket, of course)...  Big grin


User currently offlineB747-437B From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 22, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 4578 times:

OPNLguy summed it up perfectly.

How refreshing to read a real professional's educated opinion for a change.

User currently offlineCapt.Picard From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 23, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 4571 times:


The logic in your post was that with which I based my post on, with some important additions (multiple factors//chain-of-error in accidents).

Thanks for an informative post.

User currently offlineAlpha 1 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 24, posted (15 years 4 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 4557 times:

My 2 cents worth on some of this:

-CO reported the metal piece missing when the plane was checked out in IAH the next day. The immediately reported this to authorities in Paris.

-The fragment on the runway has never been proven nor disproven to be from the CO DC-10.

-Gordon Bethune has said the even if the piece was from his DC-10, he is dumbfounded as to how this metal piece hitting a tire could lead to a catastrophic fire and crash such as this. Point being that maybe there's something structurally wrong with the Concorde.

-And Greg, you launched your attack simply to be a personal attack, and nothing more. If you want to bring up the subject in the last sentence of your last post here, go on the web and find it, don't bring it up here. For a lawyer, you're quite immature.

25 Gordonroxburgh : OPNLguy Brilliant post; sums up everthing that has been going on and where a lot of discussion has taken place. Nice to hear from someone with a very
26 Widebody : Alpha 1, From what I remember, it took CO over a month to realise that the piece was missing......
27 Wpr8e : I love it when Singapore_Air deletes my posts. It just solidifies to me his inability to take a little criticism. What dramatic melodrama is he going
28 Widebody : Wpr8e, Just to clarify, I pointed out the Continental link to the crash, personally, I don't think they were even partly responsible, the fault lies w
29 Singapore_Air : There you go again Wpr8: Another personal attatck on me. Retaliation because you post was deleted? Thought so. And sorry, we're full. You can have 60J
30 Wpr8e : I love getting your sarong in a bind. Especially with those new shoes
31 Post contains images Singapore 777 : If you could just ignore him, Singapore_Air, the world would be a MUCH better place. Relax!
32 Wpr8e : Oh good. Now I have another whipping boy
33 Vambridge : In my opinion, even if the metal strip from the continental a/c caused the chain of events that led to the demise of the concord, continental should n
34 Alpha 1 : From what I remember, it was the very next day that reports of a possible CO "connection" to the crash was being looked at.
35 Post contains images Gyro : "I love getting your sarong in a bind. Especially with those new shoes" LOL
36 SegmentKing : Hrm.... I love these Euro - American fights... always brings out the best in us. I can't wait for a piece of metal to fall off of a "poorly maintained
37 Gyro : Is it really somebodies fault??? Blaming CO for the crash is absolutely ridiculous!!! If I drive down the street one day and hit a Hyundai bumper whic
38 Capt.Picard : Gyro, I don't agree, and your analogy is incomparable in terms of scale, to the Concorde incident. Freak accident: Yes, in that it was a highly unusua
39 Vambridge : Capt. Picard hear,hear!!
40 Gyro : May I suggest that you reread my post. Please realize that my analogy is aimed at representing a much smaller case scenario that could happen everyday
41 Eg777er : Mr.717 I hate to burst your 'I know everything about aviation' bubble, but THERE IS NO COMPANY CALLED BAC, or BAc. There was once a company called BAC
42 Servisair : Gyro: When Concorde was give the go-ahead, it had more airlines interested than just BA and AF. Lufthansa, JAL, SIA and Syrian to name but a few. It w
43 Capt.Picard : Gyro, I read your post very carefully the first time round. Basically, the problem is your analogy isn't very good. A better analogy would be hitting
44 Post contains images Capt.Picard : I stand corrected on my use of "Aerospatiale" etc. by the honourable Eg777er CP
45 Tekelbery : I don't see how this is Continentals fault. CDG is a very busy airport and some other plane that was taxiing to the runway or to the gate could have n
46 CPDC10-30 : Mr.717, what exactly are you trying to contribute?
47 Eg777er : Actually, if you consider how much effort and money was put into Concorde, each airframe is worth about £1 billion: I.e. about $1,200,000,000. Hardly
48 Mr. 717 : Cheap as in quality!
49 Gordonroxburgh : The cost of Concorde was around £1.5 billion UK and they brought back in around £150 Million UK from sales and £30 for the airlines taking on the c
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