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Are The American Airlines MD-80s Safe  
User currently offline767AA From United States of America, joined Oct 2012, 1 posts, RR: 0
Posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 4626 times:

Today I was on American Airlines flight 434 with service to Tulsa. We had 2 problems on the plane. The first one there was a tiny hole in the plane. Then once we were going to the runway then the inside of the plane goes dark. So the pilot try's to get the engine generators running but, no luck.So we think we are taxiing to the runway but we turn around. Then we go back to the gate and maintenance comes and said "We have to get off the plane." So we do and 1 hour later we are back on the plane. We make it to Tulsa safely. 3 hours late.

[Edited 2012-11-18 18:58:42]

[Edited 2012-11-18 19:04:13]

56 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently onlineB757forever From United States of America, joined May 2010, 425 posts, RR: 3
Reply 1, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 4639 times:

Yes. I would not hesitate to board any AA aircraft. Although the company may be struggling, the technicians working the line would not release an aircraft unless it was fit to fly. That is part of the "DNA" of us technicians. When an AMT puts his name on an airworthiness release, he is stating that the aircraft is airworthy. I do not question that.

User currently offlinegigneil From United States of America, joined Nov 2002, 16347 posts, RR: 85
Reply 2, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 4637 times:

They are certificated to operate in the United States by the FAA. They are not one iota more or less safe than any other certificated aircraft.

NS


User currently offlineflymia From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 7252 posts, RR: 6
Reply 3, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 4636 times:

Quoting gigneil (Reply 3):
They are certificated to operate in the United States by the FAA.

Exactly. Flying the airlines in the U.S. is the safest type of flying in the world. So to answer your question again yes they are safe.

I see you are new and fairly young. I remember posting at your age too. Welcome to Anet and hope you learn nearly as much as I have from the members here. Don't take things personally too.



"It was just four of us on the flight deck, trying to do our job" (Captain Al Haynes)
User currently offlineRWA380 From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 3432 posts, RR: 5
Reply 4, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 4640 times:

You must be pretty brave with your first post being such a bold question poised at this community, I'm sure anyone responding, will be compassionate. That said, I agree with the above comments, AA would not be flying unsafe aircraft. We are better off than other parts of the world in terms of safe aircraft to fly in, not all countries and airlines are so fastidious. Happy A netting!!

[Edited 2012-11-18 18:30:03]


AA AC AQ AS BD BN CO CS DL EA EZ HA HP KL KN MP MW NK NW OO OZ PA PS QX RC RH RW SA TG TW UA US VS WA WC WN
User currently offlinerfields5421 From United States of America, joined Jul 2007, 7607 posts, RR: 32
Reply 5, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 4632 times:

There is a big difference between an unsafe aircraft and one with minor problems.

Practically all aircraft, even the very newest, have some minor issues. Usually those issues won't send a plane back to the gate. They are logged and the standards of the regulators and the airline allow the aircraft to fly passengers with those minor issues. The problems will be fixed at regular scheduled stops for maintenance work.

There are some things which cannot be checked at the gate before the passengers board, and only become apparent on taxi. The plane has to go back to the gate for those to be evaluated.

The reason you became of two problems is the airline, and the pilots, and the techs/ mechanics are being extra cautious.

It's an old joke - but literally in a few thousand flights I have NEVER met a pilot who wanted to fly an unsafe airplane.

If the plane is not safe, the first people to refuse to fly on it will be the two in the very front seats.

Yes, sometimes people get caught in bad situations and have to make very quick decisions. Sometimes like US Airways Flt 1549 - the pilot(s) make the right decisions and have the luck for everything to work out right. Sometimes like Alaska Flight 261 - there isn't anything they can do.

You are safer flying on an AA MD-80 than you would be driving Tulsa to OKC.


User currently offlineAA737-823 From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 5914 posts, RR: 11
Reply 6, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 4633 times:

For what it's worth, United's 787 flights have had many mechanical delays since they started flying earlier this month. The MEL book has come in very handy...
So, that to say, all airplanes have mechanical issues, both new and old. The nature of those issues changes with age, sure, but you can't really avoid it either way.
I DO have some personal beliefs about the age limit of operating aircraft, but that's related to wiring, rather than components themselves.


User currently offlinePHX787 From Japan, joined Mar 2012, 7859 posts, RR: 19
Reply 7, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 4632 times:

Welcome to A.net   

Quoting flymia (Reply 4):
Exactly. Flying the airlines in the U.S. is the safest type of flying in the world. So to answer your question again yes they are safe.

Sure, AA has its work cut out for them on maintaining them, but these aircraft are still functioning. Such issues are quite normal for aircraft as they get older. Even younger aircraft have slight issues too.



我思うゆえに我あり。(Jap. 'I think, therefore I am.')
User currently offlinejpetekyxmd80 From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 4391 posts, RR: 26
Reply 8, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 4635 times:

As with many older fleets, they can be more maintenance prone. I doubt it's worse than the AA 757 fleet which is very maintenance prone. Doesn't mean they are unsafe, and I have no hesitation flying on them. A lot of little things can go wrong, and none of these problems would necessarily pose a big danger, even if they were to occur in-flight.


The Best Care in the Air, 1984-2009
User currently offlineAA94 From United States of America, joined Aug 2011, 605 posts, RR: 2
Reply 9, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 4634 times:

They are absolutely safe.

Earlier this year, I was about to board a JFK-MAD flight on an AA 757. The flight ended up being delayed nearly five hours (that's another story in itself).

We later learned that the reason for the lengthy delay was that one of the inflation tanks on an exit door was malfunctioning, meaning that the slide may not inflate had there been an emergency landing.

I'd rather have an aircraft go tech (as inconvenient as that is) than fly on an unsafe one, especially on an eight-hour flight across the Atlantic.

There's no question that AA's MD80s have seen better days (from an aesthetics point of view), but I would have no hesitation stepping onboard one of them today, tomorrow, or years into the future.



Choose a challenge over competence / Eleanor Roosevelt
User currently offlinegigneil From United States of America, joined Nov 2002, 16347 posts, RR: 85
Reply 10, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 4633 times:

Hey I was being compassionate and factual  

NS


User currently offlineAeroWesty From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 20785 posts, RR: 62
Reply 11, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 4633 times:

Perfectly safe.

http://www.pprune.org/engineers-tech...icians/493993-aa-md83-mx-loss.html

Oops.  



International Homo of Mystery
User currently offlineMaverickM11 From United States of America, joined Apr 2000, 17786 posts, RR: 46
Reply 12, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 4631 times:

Depends when you ask the AA pilots 


E pur si muove -Galileo
User currently onlinelightsaber From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 13440 posts, RR: 100
Reply 13, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 4630 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

A brave topic to launch on a.net. I lurked for nearly a year!

Quoting rfields5421 (Reply 6):
You are safer flying on an AA MD-80 than you would be driving Tulsa to OKC.

   The most dangerous parts of the journey are the travel to and from the airport.

Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 13):
Depends when you ask the AA pilots

  

Quoting AA94 (Reply 10):
There's no question that AA's MD80s have seen better days (from an aesthetics point of view),

The main issue is costs (fuel and maintenance). And interior noise in the aft of the aircraft... Aesthetics, they seem ok if not up to the newest aircraft. But certainly still ok.

Lightsaber



Societies that achieve a critical mass of ideas achieve self sustaining growth; others stagnate.
User currently offlineN243NW From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 1639 posts, RR: 20
Reply 14, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 4630 times:

Quoting lightsaber (Reply 13):
And interior noise in the aft of the aircraft

The classification of this "issue" is subjective - I find it to be positively musical!   

But yes, for the vast majority of the traveling public, they probably don't enjoy the rearmost rows.



B-52s don't take off. They scare the ground away.
User currently offlineOB1504 From United States of America, joined Jul 2004, 3433 posts, RR: 6
Reply 15, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 4630 times:

Quoting 767AA (Thread starter):
Today I was on American Airlines flight 434 with service to Tulsa. We had 2 problems on the plane. The first one there was a tiny hole in the plane. Then once we were going to the runway then the inside of the plane goes dark. So the pilot try's to get the engine generators running but, no luck.So we think we are taxiing to the runway but we turn around. Then we go back to the gate and maintenance comes and said "We have to get off the plane." So we do and 1 hour later we are back on the plane. We make it to Tulsa safely. 3 hours late.

The fact that they kept delaying the flight to correct every conceivable problem with the aircraft is proof that it is safe. That airplane wasn't going to transport paying customers until it was in perfect working order. No airline employee would knowingly endanger the lives of passengers.

Quoting rfields5421 (Reply 5):
If the plane is not safe, the first people to refuse to fly on it will be the two in the very front seats.

  


User currently offlinebrons2 From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 3017 posts, RR: 4
Reply 16, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 4630 times:

Quoting N243NW (Reply 14):
But yes, for the vast majority of the traveling public, they probably don't enjoy the rearmost rows.

You can say that again! The engines seem to vibrate at different frequencies and so the sound is pulsating. The farther front you can sit, the better. I like row 7 the best  



Firings, if well done, are good for employee morale.
User currently offlinegasman From New Zealand, joined Mar 2004, 871 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 4631 times:

Soak it up, you Americans. Nowhere else in the world will you see so many of these beautiful high-tailed, rear engined wonders. They are works of art to look at in the sky. Trust me, you'll miss them when they're gone.

User currently offlinemhkansan From United States of America, joined Jan 2010, 710 posts, RR: 1
Reply 18, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 4630 times:

Quoting gasman (Reply 17):
Soak it up, you Americans. Nowhere else in the world will you see so many of these beautiful high-tailed, rear engined wonders. They are works of art to look at in the sky. Trust me, you'll miss them when they're gone.

Just got off one and looking forward to another exciting take off in one tomorrow, this time to DEN. Its going to be full so I'm betting I'll get stuck in the back right next to the mighty JT8D!

I love flying in the eighties and I fully trust the AA maintenance crew with my life, just as I would with any other carrier's aircraft.


User currently offlineaerorobnz From Rwanda, joined Feb 2001, 7339 posts, RR: 13
Reply 19, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 4631 times:

I love flying any of the MDs- doesn't matter who owns/operates them (except maybe Dana Air... ). I had a jumpseat on one from IGR-AEP and it was amazing. Yes you will miss them once AA is dominated by A32x series....

User currently offlinedanielkandi From Denmark, joined Sep 2012, 61 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 4629 times:

the poster shouldn't worry at all what hardcore US AA fans will say as a reply to his topic. Too many snobs outhere take things too personal, and anyone no matter what age, should be able to post this kind of post without getting bashed or answered in a dark tone. But on the safety-issue, I do hope they don't cut corners. Plus didn't all the MD80's get a major overhaul 3-4 years ago ? with new wiring and everything stripped away ? I remember seeing a docu about it, where the VP or something, was talking about how the MD80's were WELL taken care of.


Flown on : md80, md95, Avro RJ85/100, Q400, Atr42/72, a319/320/321, a332/a333, a343/346, b733 and up, 757, 747, 767 and
User currently offlineRara From Germany, joined Jan 2007, 2135 posts, RR: 2
Reply 21, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 4629 times:

Quoting flymia (Reply 3):
Exactly. Flying the airlines in the U.S. is the safest type of flying in the world.

No, flying in Europe or Australia isn't any less safe.



Samson was a biblical tough guy, but his dad Samsonite was even more of a hard case.
User currently offlinezeke From Hong Kong, joined Dec 2006, 9210 posts, RR: 76
Reply 22, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 4630 times:

Quoting flymia (Reply 3):
Flying the airlines in the U.S. is the safest type of flying in the world.

That would depend on how the numbers are presented http://aviation-safety.net/statistics/geographical/worst_geo_loc.php



We are addicted to our thoughts. We cannot change anything if we cannot change our thinking – Santosh Kalwar
User currently offlineAmerican 767 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 3949 posts, RR: 12
Reply 23, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 4628 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
FORUM MODERATOR

Quoting gasman (Reply 17):
Trust me, you'll miss them when they're gone.

Yes you will, and I will miss them too. But if it is the T tail design and rear mounted engines that you really like, keep in mind that there will still be CRJ's around at most civilian airports.

Is an airplane safe to fly? Old doesn't mean it's not safe.

Ben Soriano



Ben Soriano
User currently offlineDTWPurserBoy From United States of America, joined Feb 2010, 1729 posts, RR: 7
Reply 24, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 4629 times:

With all due respect I dislike the title of this thread. The implication is that they are NOT safe. All airplanes have things that go wrong with them--like one poster said about UA 787's is true--new models go through a "break-in" phase. I remember when the A320 came out we were on and off the gate because the pilots could not clear certain fault indicators on the FMC. It was just a part of the learning cycle.

In my 38 years of airline flying the only time I ever got hurt was driving to the airport.

THe MD80/90 series are tough birds--McDonnell-Douglas could really build great aircraft. Look how many DC-3's -4's, -6's, 7's, -8's and -9's are still working every day somewhere in the world. You won't see a lot of old 707's and very few 727's still left.



Qualified on Concorde/B707/B720/B727/B737/B747/B757/B767/B777/DC-8/DC-9/DC-10/A319/A320/A330/MD-88-90
User currently offlinedenverdanny From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 263 posts, RR: 0
Reply 25, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 4858 times:

Quoting zeke (Reply 22):

Quoting flymia (Reply 3):
Flying the airlines in the U.S. is the safest type of flying in the world.

That would depend on how the numbers are presented http://aviation-safety.net/statistics/geographical/worst_geo_loc.php

Unfortunately, they are just flat statistics--no fun to look at. We need to cross examine these by the number of flights/passengers flown. I'd be interested to see it if anyone had deeper data. Also, just because a region hosted a disaster doesn't mean it was involved per se. Flight could have just been flying over or making a stop, right?


User currently offlinetan flyr From United States of America, joined Aug 2000, 1919 posts, RR: 0
Reply 26, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 4868 times:

Quoting DTWPurserBoy (Reply 24):
THe MD80/90 series are tough birds--McDonnell-Douglas could really build great aircraft. Look how many DC-3's -4's, -6's, 7's, -8's and -9's are still working every day somewhere in the world. You won't see a lot of old 707's and very few 727's still left

Amen toi that DTW! for the younger ones one here, you have to remember that structurally everything designed by the Douglas boys had some military influence..meaning they over designed, "just in case " type thinking. As I understood it the aluminum skin is a few mils thicker than a 737, spars a tad thicker, etc. There was a thred on this on here years ago with some insightful comments as I recall.

So, no do not fear, embrace the MD 80..for as gasman says it won't be too long and we will miss.

(bear in mind DL will be flying MD90's and MD95, errr B-717's for at least a decade yet. Plenty of time to enjoy the beauty of Douglas designed aircraft!


User currently offlineSmittyOne From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 27, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 4995 times:

Quoting Rara (Reply 21):
No, flying in Europe or Australia isn't any less safe.

Indeed, it's the same type of flying as airlines in the US. The safest kind.


User currently offlinedenverdanny From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 263 posts, RR: 0
Reply 28, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 5019 times:

Quoting tan flyr (Reply 26):
Amen toi that DTW! for the younger ones one here, you have to remember that structurally everything designed by the Douglas boys had some military influence..meaning they over designed, "just in case " type thinking.

I dunno... I'm sure Douglas made great planes, but what about all the problems with the DC10? There weren't fail safes for the hydraulic systems on that, and of course it had the cargo door issue. You gotta think about the Alaska flight too. Wasn't a fail safe for the tail except the bolt. I guess it held out for a long time before going, which was amazing. Too bad they didn't make it to the airport.


User currently offlinedenverdanny From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 263 posts, RR: 0
Reply 29, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 5003 times:

Quoting 767AA (Thread starter):
Today I was on American Airlines flight 434 with service to Tulsa. We had 2 problems on the plane. The first one there was a tiny hole in the plane. Then once we were going to the runway then the inside of the plane goes dark. So the pilot try's to get the engine generators running but, no luck.So we think we are taxiing to the runway but we turn around. Then we go back to the gate and maintenance comes and said "We have to get off the plane." So we do and 1 hour later we are back on the plane. We make it to Tulsa safely. 3 hours late.

I flew a lot as a kid and never had any fear of the aircraft until after some severe turbulence on a DC-10. I'd also been reading about recent flights like 232 and 103, so that made the severe turbulence even more scary. Since then, I've grown comfortable with flying again, though it's taken some time. You shouldn't worry about the safety of the MD-80s.


User currently offlineItalianFlyer From United States of America, joined Nov 2007, 1099 posts, RR: 2
Reply 30, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 4963 times:

Quoting SmittyOne (Reply 27):
Indeed, it's the same type of flying as airlines in the US. The safest kind.

Actually, I would take it a step further and argue that the vast majority of first tier carriers around the world are equally safe. Part of the standardization initiative came from the ICAO....but the real engine behind enhanced safety standards has been the rise of global alliances. Regional and national variances have improved ALLOT since the 1990s.


User currently offlineckfred From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 5297 posts, RR: 1
Reply 31, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 5009 times:

I was once on an AA 777 that wound up going back to the gate at DFW, due to a hydraulic issue. Then, while at the gate, the a/c quit working. The mechanics couldn't fix the hydraulic issue at the gate, so were put onto another 777 that had just arrived from LHR.

You assume that in 2009, that 777 was 10 years old, at the most (AA got its first 777 in 1999). So, aircraft of any age can have problems.


User currently offlineDarksnowynight From United States of America, joined Jan 2012, 1397 posts, RR: 3
Reply 32, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day ago) and read 4956 times:

Quoting danielkandi (Reply 20):

the poster shouldn't worry at all what hardcore US AA fans will say as a reply to his topic. Too many snobs outhere take things too personal, and anyone no matter what age, should be able to post this kind of post without getting bashed or answered in a dark tone.

I keep seeing this, but I'm not seeing to many posts to worry about here. Either we're just better than that, or, maybe, a lot have been deleted already?

Quoting American 767 (Reply 23):

Is an airplane safe to fly? Old doesn't mean it's not safe.

They got old for a reason, right?  
Quoting denverdanny (Reply 28):
I'm sure Douglas made great planes, but what about all the problems with the DC10? There weren't fail safes for the hydraulic systems on that, and of course it had the cargo door issue.

The DC-10 is actually one of the best planes you can ride, where safety is concerned. We have to keep in mind a few things. Part of why the A340s, 777s, 787s and soon the 350s of the world are considered great in their safety, and the DC in DC10 stands for "Death Cruiser" is that the -10 came from a different era entirely. That trijet, along with the 1011, blazed a lot of new trails for modern aviation, and virtually everything that happened to/with them absolutely would have happened with the 777, 340, etc, had they not gone before to learn a lot of these lessons.

We also have to bear in mind that the -10 was subject to enough AD's to level the Black Forest, and is generally credited with being the "most improved" airliner in history. For what that's worth.

If you really want to a widebody with a safety record to cringe at, we can always look up the 747.



Posting without Knowledge is simply Tolerated Vandalism... We are the Vandals.
User currently offlineDTWPurserBoy From United States of America, joined Feb 2010, 1729 posts, RR: 7
Reply 33, posted (2 years 1 week 1 day ago) and read 4978 times:

Quoting denverdanny (Reply 28):
I dunno... I'm sure Douglas made great planes, but what about all the problems with the DC10? There weren't fail safes for the hydraulic systems on that, and of course it had the cargo door issue. You gotta think about the Alaska flight too. Wasn't a fail safe for the tail except the bolt. I guess it held out for a long time before going, which was amazing. Too bad they didn't make it to the airport.

The Sioux City crash was a one-off incident. The catastrophic failure of the #2 engine threw schrapnel into the only place on the aircraft where all three hydraulic systems were close to each other. The cargo doors were mostly human failure--the guys closing them failed to follow established procedures and forced them closed. And as far as Sioux City goes anyone who has seen the video of that horrible mess has to be amazed that over 150 people walked away from that accident because the DC10 is as strong as a tank. It even cartwheeled down the runway--and the controlled landing was due in large part to outstanding airmanship and one tough airplane.

The DC10 tragedy in ORD in 1979, again, was due to human failure. Did not follow established procedures. McDonnell-Douglas had never approved removing an engine and pylon and then reattaching them with a forklift! There is one guy out there (I won't mention his name here) that has the nickname in the airline industry as "Old Forklift ______." He was the bright light that thought that one up. And he went on to careers (I won't say successful) at several other carriers. Go figure.

Accidents never happen because of one error. They are the culmination of a series of errors.

The DC10 went on to a long career as a safe, reliable machine. I personally was sorry to see our last one flown off to the desert. But a lot are still in service both as passenger airplanes and freighters and will be for many years. It had its quirks (a TERRIBLE lavatory system!) but I was working on them on two occasions where we blew an engine and the old girl didn't even breathe hard on two engines.



Qualified on Concorde/B707/B720/B727/B737/B747/B757/B767/B777/DC-8/DC-9/DC-10/A319/A320/A330/MD-88-90
User currently offlinecsavel From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 1374 posts, RR: 4
Reply 34, posted (2 years 1 week 22 hours ago) and read 4918 times:

Think of it this way. Notorious crashes can and have rendered airlines out of business because of the publicity. Even if AA is in bankruptcy, and even if you think the worst of corporate bosses, do you think they'd risk cutting corners and then having the 24/7 US news cycle crush them like so many tin cans?

Plus the pilots want to live too, and the mechanics, don't think they'd want that on their consciences? In fact I read (might have been here) that a mechanic from AA felt so guilty after the Chicago DC-10 crash that he committed suicide.



I may be ugly. I may be an American. But don't call me an ugly American.
User currently offlineDTWPurserBoy From United States of America, joined Feb 2010, 1729 posts, RR: 7
Reply 35, posted (2 years 1 week 22 hours ago) and read 4911 times:

I have never heard of a mechanic commiting suicide over the accident. That poor guy was just doing his job the way his boss told him to do it. The decision to use the forklift came from a much higher level in the company.

The only crash I can think of that drove an airline out of business was Valujet. That, again, was as a result of human error and a failure to follow established procedures. Not the fault of the airline but rather the subcontractor that packed the O2 cannisters without the safety caps in place.

Years ago NW had a DC-10-40 leased to American Trans Air. A seat row had come loose and rather than fix it, they tossed it into the aft baggage compartment. On the 10 the O2 was housed in the seat backs. They are oxygen generating cannisters that heat up to over 500 degrees F. During the night, while the cabin was being cleaned, someone noticed that the rear cabin was getting rather warm. Turns out the airplane was on fire because of the careless stowing of the seat row with the oxygen cannisters. The entire airplane was burned out on the interior--only the engines and landing gear were salvagable. Thankfully, no one was hurt but the airplane was destroyed. (I think it was N142US or N143US). I'll have to takealook at the data base to see if there is a photo--I'll bet there is.



Qualified on Concorde/B707/B720/B727/B737/B747/B757/B767/B777/DC-8/DC-9/DC-10/A319/A320/A330/MD-88-90
User currently offlinedeltadc9 From United States of America, joined Apr 2006, 2844 posts, RR: 4
Reply 36, posted (2 years 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 4898 times:

Quoting gasman (Reply 17):
Soak it up, you Americans. Nowhere else in the world will you see so many of these beautiful high-tailed, rear engined wonders. They are works of art to look at in the sky. Trust me, you'll miss them when they're gone

So true.

That being said, there are DC-3s still flying for money. Douglass and later MD built what many consider to be the best built commercial aviation airlpanes ever constructed. Add then there is the F-15, a work of art. They knew what they were doing.

Maintenance in the US is to be trusted, verified by the right people sure, but trusted.



Dont take life too seriously because you will never get out of it alive - Bugs Bunny
User currently offlineflashmeister From United States of America, joined Apr 2000, 2903 posts, RR: 6
Reply 37, posted (2 years 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 4906 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Quoting DTWPurserBoy (Reply 35):
Thankfully, no one was hurt but the airplane was destroyed. (I think it was N142US or N143US).

It was N142US. Read more at http://www.ntsb.gov/aviationquery/br...ef.aspx?ev_id=20001213X34445&key=1


User currently offlineN62NA From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 4579 posts, RR: 7
Reply 38, posted (2 years 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 4888 times:

Quoting gasman (Reply 17):
Soak it up, you Americans. Nowhere else in the world will you see so many of these beautiful high-tailed, rear engined wonders. They are works of art to look at in the sky. Trust me, you'll miss them when they're gone.

I agree. I'm so disappointed that AA stopped flying them into my home airport of MIA years ago. 


User currently offlinewoodsboy From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 1031 posts, RR: 2
Reply 39, posted (2 years 1 week 20 hours ago) and read 4863 times:

As long as we are talking about design flaws as opposed to human/MX erros causing accidents I thought I would toss in the cause of the Alaska Airlines crash in 2000. It was indeed the jack-screw that failed in the tail causing the horizontal stab to just "FLOAT" causing the plane to porpoise and ultimately become uncontrollable. As we remember it was AS MX that took the fall for that one, failing to properly lubricate the jack screw assembly as per MDC guidelines. This uncovered systematic MX failings at their OAK MX base that have, obviously been addressed and solved. But that crash was not due to a design flaw.
About the only MDC crashes that can, at least somewhat be blamed on poor design are several accidents involving the MD-11. Its been widely discussed that the MD-11 is a handful upon landing due to its small vert-stab relative to its stretched fuselage as well as mostly the identical wing as the DC-10-30/40. The MD-11 is not at all unsafe but it does take perhaps, extra care in handling. It could be called unique handling characteristics that must be learned and perfected due its different design compared to just about every other plane out there. Tri-jets handle differently than other designs with all wing mounted engines, heavier tail. When the 727 first started commercial flying in the mid 1960s there were a number of alarming fatal accidents that were attributed to pilot error and failure to be adequately trained on the handling characteristics of a plane that was so tail heavy. A design flaw? No, a design and handling difference? Yes.

As far as the Sioux City DC-10 crash, you can also note that since the time of the DC-10's design there have been much stronger materials developed for engine housings that mostly* can contain an engine failure most* of the time as compared to older designs. Its quite possible that is the DC-10s rear/high mounted engine has been encased in a carbon fiber nacelle, we would never have had that crash but thats just the progression of technology over time.


User currently offlineOB1504 From United States of America, joined Jul 2004, 3433 posts, RR: 6
Reply 40, posted (2 years 1 week 19 hours ago) and read 4873 times:

Quoting DTWPurserBoy (Reply 35):
The only crash I can think of that drove an airline out of business was Valujet. That, again, was as a result of human error and a failure to follow established procedures. Not the fault of the airline but rather the subcontractor that packed the O2 cannisters without the safety caps in place.

Technically, ValuJet bought AirTran and kept the name, going on to become a successful company and eventually be bought by Southwest. It was only the brand and not the airline that was destroyed.

Quoting N62NA (Reply 38):
I agree. I'm so disappointed that AA stopped flying them into my home airport of MIA years ago.

We used to see them once or twice a year on a rare equipment substitution, but now that the new 737-800s have started pouring in, I think they're gone for good. The ATR 72 stopped serving MIA last Thursday; American Eagle at MIA is now all-jet.


User currently offlineA36001 From Australia, joined Sep 2012, 190 posts, RR: 0
Reply 41, posted (2 years 1 week 17 hours ago) and read 4872 times:

The original poster stated there was "a tiny hole in the plane". Now correct me if I am wrong, but would a hole in the airplane not warrant more than a return to the gate, more like a return to the MX facility followed by an investigation on how a hole got there in the first place. Which if it was a hole I am sure that would of happened.

But I agree, AA is as safe as QF are (for example) and that's down to the people at all levels taking safety as an absolute priority! As the consequences are too awful and far reaching.  


User currently offlineN243NW From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 1639 posts, RR: 20
Reply 42, posted (2 years 1 week 16 hours ago) and read 4873 times:

Quoting denverdanny (Reply 28):
You gotta think about the Alaska flight too. Wasn't a fail safe for the tail except the bolt.

And you'll find a very similar design on every 737 out there. One single jackscrew, moving the entire stabilizer. If the nut lets loose, watch out.



B-52s don't take off. They scare the ground away.
User currently offlineA36001 From Australia, joined Sep 2012, 190 posts, RR: 0
Reply 43, posted (2 years 1 week 16 hours ago) and read 4870 times:

Please tell me there is more than one nut holding the mechanism that moves the tailplane. I flew in a 737 yesterday lol  

User currently onlineB757forever From United States of America, joined May 2010, 425 posts, RR: 3
Reply 44, posted (2 years 1 week 16 hours ago) and read 4867 times:

Quoting N243NW (Reply 42):
And you'll find a very similar design on every 737 out there

And every 757 and every 767... It's really not an issue.


User currently offlinebeechnut From Canada, joined Apr 2004, 728 posts, RR: 10
Reply 45, posted (2 years 1 week 16 hours ago) and read 4846 times:

Quoting DTWPurserBoy (Reply 33):
The Sioux City crash was a one-off incident. The catastrophic failure of the #2 engine threw schrapnel into the only place on the aircraft where all three hydraulic systems were close to each other. The cargo doors were mostly human failure--the guys closing them failed to follow established procedures and forced them closed. And as far as Sioux City goes anyone who has seen the video of that horrible mess has to be amazed that over 150 people walked away from that accident because the DC10 is as strong as a tank. It even cartwheeled down the runway--and the controlled landing was due in large part to outstanding airmanship and one tough airplane.

The DC10 tragedy in ORD in 1979, again, was due to human failure. Did not follow established procedures. McDonnell-Douglas had never approved removing an engine and pylon and then reattaching them with a forklift! There is one guy out there (I won't mention his name here) that has the nickname in the airline industry as "Old Forklift ______." He was the bright light that thought that one up. And he went on to careers (I won't say successful) at several other carriers. Go figure.

Accidents never happen because of one error. They are the culmination of a series of errors.

The DC10 went on to a long career as a safe, reliable machine. I personally was sorry to see our last one flown off to the desert. But a lot are still in service both as passenger airplanes and freighters and will be for many years. It had its quirks (a TERRIBLE lavatory system!) but I was working on them on two occasions where we blew an engine and the old girl didn't even breathe hard on two engines.

It is true that accidents usually happen when the holes in the "swiss cheese" line up, i.e., due to multiple factors.

However it is an undeniable fact that design flaws in the DC-10 accounted for several of the holes in the cheese, so that the same accident in another aircraft wouldn't have brought it down. The hydraulics was always known to be the 10's achilles' heel. What braniac designed all three circuits to come together in a location where an un-contained engine failure would knock all out at once?

Similarly, the slat retracting mechanism (cable/drum instead of screw jack which is self-locking), and the routing of hydraulic lines ahead of the spar ensured that the physical loss of an engine would cause the slats on one side to retract leaving the other side deployed; and with no slat asymmetry indicators in the cockpit the result was inevitable.

Then there was the unvented floor design that, in an explosive decompression from the cargo compartment, would buckle the floor and jam control cables.

The "Death Cruiser" monicker was well deserved as any reading of the statistics would show, especially compared to its contemporary, the L1011:

L1011 accident rate per million, 0.91; fatal events, 5; 5.5 Million flights, rank 11
DC10: 1.97, 15, 7.6 Million, 15
MD11: 5.71, 4, 0.7 Million, 18

Removing the Concorde from the stats (which is a statistical blip due to so few flights flown), the MD11 is dead last in safety statistics, and the DC-10 third from last among jetliners (just ahead of the F28, and though not a jet, the Embraer Bandeirante).

Ironically, for this thread, the safest jetliner is the MD80! Ranks second overall, the Saab 340 ranking first. Actually first is the 777, not even on the charts, since no fatal events, a remarkable record! Also remarkable is the 767 in 3d place overall (source: www.airdisaster.com)

Pilot's perspective from a pilot who flew the DC10, the MD11 and the L1011:

http://www.airlinepilotforums.com/te...-dc-10-vs-l-1011-a.html#post749849

While it's popular to affirm that the DC10 is safe and has been the victim strictly of human error, the truth is rather more prosaic. It was a hasty design with many shortcomings. The MD11 was not only no improvement, but is measurably worse.

Beech


User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 25871 posts, RR: 22
Reply 46, posted (2 years 1 week 15 hours ago) and read 4835 times:

Quoting beechnut (Reply 45):
While it's popular to affirm that the DC10 is safe and has been the victim strictly of human error, the truth is rather more prosaic. It was a hasty design with many shortcomings. The MD11 was not only no improvement, but is measurably worse.

Also have to consider the type of operation. MD-11 passenger operations have been very safe. Almost all fatal MD-11 accidents have involved freighters.


User currently offlinebrilondon From Canada, joined Aug 2005, 4389 posts, RR: 2
Reply 47, posted (2 years 1 week 15 hours ago) and read 4834 times:

Quoting AeroWesty (Reply 11):
Perfectly safe.

http://www.pprune.org/engineers-tech...icians/493993-aa-md83-mx-loss.html

Oops.  

This is not an indictment of the safety of the MD but a lapse in the maintenance operations safety standards.

Quoting zeke (Reply 22):

Those figures are since 1945, in the US which has more people flying than any other country in the world. I would fly them any where compared to say the airlines in Russia, or Africa.



Rush for ever; Yankees all the way!!
User currently offlineAmerican 767 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 3949 posts, RR: 12
Reply 48, posted (2 years 1 week 14 hours ago) and read 4830 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
FORUM MODERATOR

Quoting DTWPurserBoy (Reply 24):
very few 727's still left.

That's the airplane I'm the most fond of. I am fond of the DC-9/MD-80 series also, but not as much as I am fond of the 727. I will always remember her all my life.

There are still quite a few 727s flying as freighters, if you talk about passenger 727s then I would agree with your statement.



Ben Soriano
User currently offlinejeb94 From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 608 posts, RR: 5
Reply 49, posted (2 years 1 week 12 hours ago) and read 4799 times:

Quoting woodsboy (Reply 39):

As long as we are talking about design flaws as opposed to human/MX erros causing accidents I thought I would toss in the cause of the Alaska Airlines crash in 2000. It was indeed the jack-screw that failed in the tail causing the horizontal stab to just "FLOAT" causing the plane to porpoise and ultimately become uncontrollable. As we remember it was AS MX that took the fall for that one, failing to properly lubricate the jack screw assembly as per MDC guidelines. This uncovered systematic MX failings at their OAK MX base that have, obviously been addressed and solved. But that crash was not due to a design flaw.

Considering most, if not all, large aircraft use a single jackscrew with a very large nut on one end safetied in place with very thick lockwire, and a drive mechanism on the other I'm going to say that the jack-screw on the MD-80, (and all DC-9 family aircraft for that matter) have been and continue to be safe. Considering there has been exactly one crash attributed to a failure of the jackscrew, after the pilots messed with it after it exhibited a problem, I would hardly call it a flawed design. Pilot error? Yup. Maintenance error? Certainly, to the point of criminal. Flawed design? No way. Are American's Mad Dogs safe? I don't work for them but I am an A&P very familiar with the MD80 and without question those AA planes are safe. They, along with Delta's, are probably the best cared for MD80s out there in my opinion.

[Edited 2012-11-19 21:33:48]

User currently offlinetonymctigue From Ireland, joined Feb 2006, 1955 posts, RR: 9
Reply 50, posted (2 years 1 week 10 hours ago) and read 4783 times:
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Quoting DTWPurserBoy (Reply 33):
If you really want to a widebody with a safety record to cringe at, we can always look up the 747.

In fairness to the B747, it has been involved in a freakishly high number of non aircraft design related incidents such as bombings, runway collisions with other B747 aircraft and being accidentally shot down. Many of the rest are down to human error rather than design flaws.

As far as the safety of the MD-80s, I wouldn't doubt it for a second that they are safe. You can argue many things about MD but they built strong airplanes that outlast anything else out there. How many comparable B737's are still flying compared to the number of DC-9/MD-80 aircraft from the same era? Some would even argue that part of the reason MD evantually failed is because they spent too much time worrying about making strong aircraft at the expense of making lighter aircraft that were more fuel efficient.



Flown With EI,FR,RE,UA,CO,AA,WS,CX,QF,JQ: Airports SNN,GWY,ORK,DUB,NOC,LHR,STN,BOS,EWR,JFK,ORD,BOI,SEA,MCI,LHR,LYS,CDG,H
User currently offlineual777uk From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2005, 3356 posts, RR: 1
Reply 51, posted (2 years 1 week 8 hours ago) and read 4775 times:

Welcome to A.Net........hell of a first topic  

Many moons ago, I was flying AA from JFK to SJU on the A300. Now that aircraft was as reliable as an ashtray on a motorbike. We have two delays for the same aircraft which totalled nearly four hours and in the end the flight was cancelled and we all headed to a hotel for the night. The next morning we were placed on another A300 and that was delayed for another tech issue. We eventually got underway but did i have any hesitation flying........absolutely not....it was AA, they are a respected airline and desoite recent finanacial issues, safety and maintenence is their #1 priority. Now if I was in some third world country with all of the above then i might start worrying but not here.


User currently offlineAA767LOVER From Hong Kong, joined Aug 2007, 609 posts, RR: 0
Reply 52, posted (2 years 1 week 6 hours ago) and read 4746 times:

My friend, no more safer than the 757, 767, Scarebus or even Megabus . . . the point is . . . if you want safety . . . stay in your home . . . but then again . . . i had a family friend who tripped in his own house in the dark and smashed a hole in the wall with his head and is now certified a quadriplegic . . . my own aunt fell down the stairs and died of cerebral hemmorhaging with all the blood spilling out at the young age of 42 years. . . what's safe? Nothing . . .
I've had problems on the Scarebus before. I need not worry. I asked them to put me on USAirways instead. Are they safe? No, they crashed into the Hudson River with a miraculous stats of no deaths. . .



J.I. Tsui, American Advantage Member, United Mileage Plus (Premier)
User currently offlineDarksnowynight From United States of America, joined Jan 2012, 1397 posts, RR: 3
Reply 53, posted (2 years 1 week 1 hour ago) and read 4713 times:

Quoting tonymctigue (Reply 50):

In fairness to the B747, it has been involved in a freakishly high number of non aircraft design related incidents such as bombings, runway collisions with other B747 aircraft and being accidentally shot down. Many of the rest are down to human error rather than design flaws.

I actually said that; I don't know why a.net attributes that to DTWpurserboy...

Anyway, I certainly don't disagree there. I was just pointing out that if we look at the total scale of DC-10 incidents, people seem to lump in all causes as design issues. If we'd done that to the 747, we wouldn't look at it with such rose colored glasses either.

As well, one last reason the 747 leads the twin aisle deathcount (by a good margin at that), is that there are so many more of them made than the rest of the same-era wide bodies.

All else being equal, yes McD built some pretty reliable stuff.



Posting without Knowledge is simply Tolerated Vandalism... We are the Vandals.
User currently offlinedenverdanny From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 263 posts, RR: 0
Reply 54, posted (2 years 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 4698 times:

Quoting N243NW (Reply 42):

Quoting denverdanny (Reply 28):
You gotta think about the Alaska flight too. Wasn't a fail safe for the tail except the bolt.

And you'll find a very similar design on every 737 out there. One single jackscrew, moving the entire stabilizer. If the nut lets loose, watch out.

I guess my question then would be on the 737, is the stabilizer capable of ripping up and off the way it did with the Alaska flight, or would the frame still hold it there? Cause it seemed the md-80 stabilizer is a bit different, though I'm not an expert. The stabilizer on the md-80 is more free to move and is right and that the top, isn't it?

[Edited 2012-11-20 11:02:28]

User currently offlineDTWPurserBoy From United States of America, joined Feb 2010, 1729 posts, RR: 7
Reply 55, posted (2 years 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 4682 times:

Quoting tonymctigue (Reply 50):
Quoting DTWPurserBoy (Reply 33):If you really want to a widebody with a safety record to cringe at, we can always look up the 747.

Just for the record, this is not a quote from my posting. I never said this. Please reread post #33. Don't know how this happened but I am the biggest 747 fan on the planet! She was and always will be my favorite airplane to work on.



Qualified on Concorde/B707/B720/B727/B737/B747/B757/B767/B777/DC-8/DC-9/DC-10/A319/A320/A330/MD-88-90
User currently offlineDarksnowynight From United States of America, joined Jan 2012, 1397 posts, RR: 3
Reply 56, posted (2 years 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 4656 times:

Quoting DTWPurserBoy (Reply 55):

Check out post 53.



Posting without Knowledge is simply Tolerated Vandalism... We are the Vandals.
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