bobcat
Posts: 1141
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CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 6:38 am

Those two China Airlines A340 pilots who took off from
Anchorage's taxiway earlier this year have just been
informed of their punishment. Taiwan aviation authority
has suspended them from flying, 8 months for the captain
and 7 months for the co-pilot. The official conclusion was
that they have "committed gross negligence" during the
incident.

According to the news release, it was the most severe
punishment ever handed down by the Taiwan aviation
authority. (other CI pilots had paid the ultimate price
for their mistakes... the ones on those two A300s that
crashed a few years ago)

One new piece of info that just came out was very scary.
When the Airbus A340 took off from the taxiway, its
main landing gear had made tire marks on the snow berm
at the end of the taxiway. If the A340 had lifted off just
a few seconds late, it would have no doubt collided and
crashed into the freezing water... The lead investigator
said "in that case, we would have a major disaster on
our hands"(what an understatement).... There were
252 souls onboard(including the crew) at the time.

China Airlines said the pilots will be suspended during
the 7 & 8-month period, WITHOUT pay. Does this mean
the pilots will go back flying A340s afterwards?  Wow!






 
bobcat
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 6:42 am

Correction: the captain received 8 months suspension,
and the TWO co-pilots will each get 7 months.

They have already been suspended by China Airlines
since the day of the incident(Jan. 25, 2002). This
is suspension by the company itself, not the Taiwan
aviation authority.

China Airlines said all three pilots will requre re-training
and get new ratings if they want to come back to work,
after the suspension.
 
too low
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 6:49 am

It's completely crazy to think that those pilots will fly again in few weeks...  Pissed
 
airlinelover
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 7:06 am

Just out of curiousity.. HOW ON EARTH could pilots mistake a TAXI WAY for a RUNWAY??? And, for that matter, how the hell could it've gotten enough speed TO take off??

Man, CI has been getting bad publicity, and things just seem to be getting worse for them.. Sadly, no sign of reverse yet..

Chris
Lets do some sexy math. We add you, subtract your clothes, divide your legs and multiply
 
bobcat
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 7:11 am

This was the original news article from January...


"This is going to be seriously ugly. Call the crash phone," declared the
tower controller as a China Air A340 roared for takeoff down taxiway K
instead of runway 32 at Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport
(ANC) this past Jan. 25. The case is a twist on the runway incursion
problem - taxiway incursions. With 254 passengers and crew aboard, the
airplane's wheels left 4-inch deep grooves as the airplane barely
cleared a snow berm and continued on its flight to Taipei.



 
bobcat
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 7:53 am

This is how the incident happened:


http://www.airdisaster.com/graphics/anc.jpg

Here's a photo of that A340:


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Arthur Yu

 
DC10Tony
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 8:00 am

How long is that taxiway they took off from, and what's a snow berm?
 
OPNLguy
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 8:03 am

Just a curiosity....

The topic line mentions the pilots were "convicted"

Is that in the legal sense, i.e. they were charged with/tried for criminal violations, or did they just receive sanctions from their employer?
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
bobcat
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 8:18 am

DC10Tony: the photo above shows the taxiway in red
a snow berm is created when the snow
removal equipment push all the snow into
one place and end up like a little hill



OPNLguy: "convicted" was the word used by the Taiwan
aviation authority, after having been found
guilty of their actions. (not a court "conviction")
 
bombayhog
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 10:52 am

Why weren't they instructed by the tower to abort when it was seen that they were taking off from the wrong place?

That's a pretty huge mistake by those guys. Amazing that they could make it up into the air.

/gwl
 
AerLingus
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 10:59 am

In a situation such as this, does the Anchorage ATC have the authority to call the flight back to the airport?
Get your patchouli stink outta my store!
 
L-188
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 11:01 am

We knew about it dragging the mains through the berm at the end of the runway right after it's happened.

What saved the pilots ass is that it was a cold and clear winter night when it happened. There is nothing like a negative density altitude when you do something stupid.

The aircraft was allready too far into it's run when it was realized what had happening for tower to stop it. Those things don't stop on a dime. If tower had tried to stop it chances are really good that it would have had a high speed overrun.

BTW: I was working about two centimeters left of the start of the jets run that night. I didn't know anything had happend untill the next day.
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RickB
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 4:50 pm

Where there any mitigating circumstances during this, i.e. bad weather, low visibility, darkness etc ?

Either way its bad, in this case the guy only had to look at his heading to realise he was not on runway 32 !!

RickB
 
L-188
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 5:01 pm

Well it was about two in the morning and in Alaska in winter that is pretty dark.

But I can personally vouch for it being cold and clear.

I was working at the airport that night.
OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
 
bobcat
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 5:36 pm

Associated Press News

Taiwan grounds three jet pilots over take-off flap in Anchorage
Mon Aug 19, 2:58 AM ET

TAIPEI, Taiwan - After months of investigation, authorities on Monday ordered three China Airlines pilots to be grounded for mistakenly taking off from a taxiway instead of the runway at an airport in Alaska.



A China Airlines Airbus 340 carrying about 250 passengers and crew took off from a taxiway in the wrong direction at Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport in January.

The jet's wheels scraped a snow berm as it lifted off at the end of the taxiway. Air traffic controllers said they didn't try to stop the aircraft because they feared it was going too fast.

Taiwan's Civil Aeronautics Administration has ordered the pilot and the captain grounded for eight months and the co-pilot seven months for the error, said director Billy Chang.

China Airlines, Taiwan's largest airline, had suspended the pilots from flying since the incident pending the investigation, officials said.

The airline has also ordered all its pilots to reconfirm with controllers that they are on the right runway before taking off, they said.

 
bobcat
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 5:41 pm

The last paragraph in the AP article above is somewhat
disturbing... Correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't believe
it's standard practice to check with air traffic controllers
each time to see if you're on the right runway.  Confused

 
LZ-TLT
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 5:49 pm

At least, they WERE convicted. I wonder if they noticed, they were rolling down the wrong taxiway for takeoff and why did they not abort?

To me, the incident is similar to the CI 747SP which plunged some 30000 ft down after the crew didn't realize a failed engine and allowed the aircraft to enter a spin. As some investigation reports said - the crew failed to prevent the incident(which was 100% preventable and somehow even predictable), but was extraordinary good to recover. Well, this 747 crew wasn't convicted. Looks like CI and/or the Taiwan Aviation Authority is starting to re-think their policy of "not judging the winners", even when the winners are to be judged. Just hope this turns for good ends - learning the lesson from such incidents rather than from fatal crashes.

Back in the 60's, there was similar situation with Balkan - a Tu-134 from Paris to Sofia suffered an engine failure in cruise climb. Several restart attempts failed. The captain decided not to turn back to Paris or the nearest enroute airport, he headed for Sofia and brought the a/c safe to its destination. The ENTIRE flight crew was suspended and after investigation, disciplinary action was taken.
 
flyboy36y
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 5:51 pm

It's like little childdren! LOL

"Ahh, tower, CIXX, mommy says I have to mke sure I'm on the right runway before I can takeoff today..."
 
ben88
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 5:56 pm

"I wonder if they noticed, they were rolling down the wrong taxiway for takeoff and why did they not abort?"

I think any taxiway would be the wrong taxiway...
 
bobcat
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 6:03 pm

How about having "Follow Me" truck lead the CI planes to
the correct runway?

hmmm..........


........wait, scratch that idea... the CI pilots would probably
run over the Follow Me truck.  Big grin
 
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apuneger
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 6:59 pm

This is indeed a serious incident. I just don't get it, how on earth it's possible to take off from TWY K instead of RWY 32? TWY K's heading must be something like 240 degrees (since it's parallel to RWY 06L/24R and 06R/24L), and RWY 32's heading is something like 320 degrees...

I just wonder, isn't it pretty obvious to check your heading once in a while? And by the way, I think there are lots of ways to tell the difference between a TWY and a RWY? I'm not aware of the exact situation at Anchorage, but I think that, even there, TWY's are clearly distinguishable of RWY's.

Ivan
Ivan Coninx - Brussels Aviation Photography
 
ben88
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Mon Aug 19, 2002 7:24 pm

Why weren't these guys fired? This seems way more dangerous than having a beer before a flight and those guys got canned with their licenses revoked.
 
bobcat
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Thu Aug 22, 2002 4:47 am

China Airlines is deciding whether or not to fire these pilots.
However, final decision isn't expected for a few weeks.

These CI A340 pilots remind me of the KLM 747 captain
(Zanten or something) who took off from Tenerife's runway
without clearance in the fog. The KLM 747 collided with
a Pan Am 747 halfway down the runway and over 500 souls
died.  Sad

If memory serves me correct, captain Zanten was the
senior 747 instructor for KLM at the time, with more than
10,000 hours in 747s.



 
tsentsan
Posts: 1921
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Thu Aug 22, 2002 5:40 am

Bobcat - I dont think he had 10,000 hours in 747s considering that the 747s were pretty new back then. Considering the first 747 was born around 1969, and the crash took place in 1977. Perhaps 10,000 hours of flight time yes.
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bobcat
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Thu Aug 22, 2002 5:46 am

Yes, I think you're right... I looked in my book, "Air Disasters" and it only said he had nearly 12000 hours...
this number probably combines all the flight time he had in 747s and other planes)

In any case, he made a fatal error that people wouldn't expect for such an experienced captain...
 
Guest

RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Thu Aug 22, 2002 1:40 pm

Going by the Airport charts , I guess the CI pilots held short of 32 and forgot that they actually had to turn right to line up and take off , and actually just roared on straight ahead . Bloody miracle all of them survived .Agree completely about the punishment handed down , beg to differ on whether they can fly again or not . There have been one hell of a lot of incidents off late involving CI pilots , instead of going around blaming all the pilots it just might be a better idea to rethink training strategies .

My 2 cents .

Regards
 
captaingomes
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RE: CI A340 Pilots Convicted For Incident At Anchorage

Thu Aug 22, 2002 1:59 pm

Ben88, sorry but having a beer (it was more than that) before a flight is very serious, and those America West pilots did deserve the outcome they got. They drank by choice before the flight. These CI pilots made a mistake, as they did not purposely take off from a taxiway. I think very serious disciplinary action should be taken however. The procedures used by CI should be seriously looked at, and CI should see if the pilots did in fact follow these procedures. If they didn't, then they should get a more serious punishment. Before suggesting these guys never fly again, you have to look at the whole picture, and if these pilots followed procedures, as well as to see their past records as well. If they have a dangerous record, then their licenses should be revoked.
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