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At LGB, What Was The Reason For This?  
User currently offlineWilax From United States of America, joined Jun 2002, 465 posts, RR: 3
Posted (11 years 9 months 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 3429 times:

I came across this photo, and do not understand the reason for backtracking on the main runway at LGB. There are taxiways on both sides of the runway all the way down, it is long enough for a fully loaded A320, and I have never seen this maneuver here before. Any clues????

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User currently offlineJeff G From United States of America, joined Jan 2002, 442 posts, RR: 1
Reply 1, posted (11 years 9 months 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 3374 times:

Looks like he's backtaxiing on the runway and turning around into position for takeoff. The parallel taxiway may have been under construction or blocked by another aircraft. Sometimes the aircraft that's first in line has to wait for their ATC release, but the aircraft behind is ready to go. Then the aircraft behind can take off from an intersection (not likely at LGB for transcon flights) or gets to the threshold of the runway by using it as a taxiway first. If there's no immediate traffic for the runway, it would be quicker than taxiing across the runway to the opposite parallel and then taxiing down to the threshold. That looks like what happened here.

User currently offlineWilax From United States of America, joined Jun 2002, 465 posts, RR: 3
Reply 2, posted (11 years 9 months 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 3315 times:

That's totally understandable, however, according to the photo, this u-turn happened right in front of taxiway L2 which is the last intersection before the end of runway 30 and not 12. At this end of the airport, there are taxiways on both sides of the runway. L2 goes across the runway and connects both taxiways, in which case, this plane could have crossed the runway and taxied full length on the other side. In addition, I pass this airport on the 405 every day and I have not noticed any construction in recent history.

There is also about 8 or 9000 feet of runway available at taxiway L2 which would negate the need for the extra 75 or so feet that it seems that this plane would have added by doing this turn.

If, for some reason, neither taxiway on either side of the runway was available and the A320 absolutely needed 12,000 feet of runway to takeoff, why did the pilot not taxi all the way to the end of 30 which is about another 2 or 300 feet down?

Thanks for the reply.

I would guess that, maybe, this plane was holding in position on runway 12 when ATC cancelled takeoff clearance, redirected the flight to takeoff runway 30, and just to save time, taxied down the runway, spun around and departed.

I really need to talk to that flight crew...

User currently offlineJeff G From United States of America, joined Jan 2002, 442 posts, RR: 1
Reply 3, posted (11 years 9 months 15 hours ago) and read 3233 times:

Actually, he's at the end of the runway. This picture is heavily compressed in distance, so you see the sign, but not the actual taxiway. You are only looking at maybe 100 feet of runway, laterally in the picture. If he was at the taxiway as you suggest, then you'd see the pavement leading to the other side, but you can't. He's probably less than 100 feet from the end of the runway. You can see at the bottom left of the picture just a little bit of the taxiway leading from the taxiway at the end. And as I said, it's quicker to backtaxi a few hundred feet than cross the runway to the opposite side taxiway and reenter the runway from the other direction. For all we know, there's a Gulfstream or Cessna just out of frame to the left blocking the taxiway. That's far more common than taxiing for length for a runway change.

User currently offlineQANTAS747-438 From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 2026 posts, RR: 2
Reply 4, posted (11 years 9 months 11 hours ago) and read 3205 times:

Several times at LGB, I have seen the daily FedEx A310 land on rwy 30, then taxi down the length of the runway, ON the runway, to it's gate. It usually comes in at about 520pm. Check it out.

My posts/replies are strictly my opinion and not that of any company, organization, or Southwest Airlines.
User currently offlineMikey From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 193 posts, RR: 1
Reply 5, posted (11 years 8 months 4 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 3079 times:

The reason was that a Freedom Air CRJ was on taxiway L2 and a American MD 80 was on taxiway L1, so Jetblue had to taxi on the runway. I guess it was in a hurry to leave. The CRJ had to wait on taxiway L2 for 30 minutes.


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Ex LAX, LGB, SNA aviation photographer
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