El Al 001
Topic Author
Posts: 978
Joined: Sun Oct 31, 1999 11:50 pm

Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Fri Oct 04, 2002 10:25 pm

Hello everyone.

Today, exactly 10 years ago, the doomed 747 went down.
This post is in honor of 51 people who lost their life on that horrible day.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
El Al cargo flight 1862 departed New York-JFK Airport for a flight to Tel Aviv via Amsterdam. The aircraft arrived at Amsterdam at 13.40h for a crew change, cargo processing and refuelling. The total amount of cargo was 114.7 tons, gross weight of the aircraft 338.3 tons (21 tons below the maximum allowable). The aircraft taxied out to runway 01L at 17.14h and started the takeoff roll at 17.21h. At 17.27:30, as the aircraft was climbing through 6500ft, the no.3 engine and pylon separated from the wing in an outward and rearward movement, colliding with the no.4 engine causing this engine and pylon to separate as well. An emergency was declared and the crew acknowledged their intention to return to Schiphol Airport and reported that they had a no.3 engine failure and a loss of engine thrust of both no.3 and 4 engine. At 17.28.57 the Amsterdam Radar controller informed the crew that runway 06 was in use with a 040 deg / 21kts wind. The crew however requested runway 27 for landing. A straight in approach to runway 27 was not possible because of airplane altitude (5000ft) and distance to the runway (7mls). The Amsterdam Arrival controller then instructed the crew to turn right heading 360deg and descend to 2000ft. During this descending turn the El Al crew reported that the no.3 and 4 engine were out and that they were having flap problems. Final clearance was given to turn right heading 270 to intercept the final approach course. When it became apparent that the aircraft was going to overshoot the localizer, the controller informed the crew accordingly and directed them to turn to heading 290 to try and intercept the final approach path again. A further instruction was given a 310 heading and descent clearance for 1500ft. These instructions were acknowledged and the crew added that they were experiencing control problems now as well. While reducing speed in preparation for the final approach, control was lost and the aircraft crashed into an eleven-floor apartment building the Bijlmermeer suburb of Amsterdam.

View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Joe Pries
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Mark Durbin


The design and certification of the B747 pylon was found to be inadequate to provide the required level of safety. Furthermore the system to ensure structural integrity by inspection failed. This ultimately caused - probably initiated by fatigue in the inboard midspar fuse-pin - the no.3 pylon and engine to separate from the wing in such a way that the no.4 pylon and engine were torn off, part of the leading edge of the wing was damaged and the use of several systems was lost or limited. This subsequently left the flight crew with very limited control of the airplane. Because of the marginal controllability a safe landing became highly improbable, if not virtually impossible.
http://aviation-safety.net/database/1992/921004-2.htm

"The El Al accident was a tragic event in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. It occurred with a B747 freighter. But again, information derived from the accident led to improvements that affected the entire B747 passenger carrying fleet."

View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Frank J. Mirande
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Joe Pries


"...We were in the living room, watching the sports program on television, like so many others in our neighbourhood did that Sunday evening. It was a few minutes after sunset when I noticed an airplane flying low. Low-flying airliners are nothing special here since we live near Schiphol and the route over our heads is one of the busiest for Amsterdam airport. But this particular plane did something strange: it flew in the wrong direction. I didn't pay much attention and it flew out of my sight. Shortly after, however, there it was again, coming right at us as we stared out of the window. My son yelled and dashed for the back of the house. As he looked out the door he saw something no one should ever have to see: the huge plane plunging into the next block, some 250 meters to the east of our building..."

"...The Boeing flew past my window only a few meters away. I was working on my computer when I heard its engines roar very, very loud. There was no time to be afraid: only seconds later it hit our block. I was lucky, my apartment was still okay and, thanks to the strong wind, the kerosene that splashed over the building didn't reach my flat. I ran out on to the veranda. What faced me was surreal: part of the giant plane was still sticking out of the block at the sixth floor. Only a minute or so later, the building started to collapse and what was left of the Boeing fell to the ground. By then the fire had spread to about 100 apartments..."

"...We were the first officers on the scene. A colleague on a motorcycle had told us over the radio that a plane flying near him was obviously in big trouble, so we drove in his direction. As the first column of smoke rose in the air, we parked the car a few hundred meters away and started to run towards the burning building. I saw a woman jump down from her balcony. She can't survive, I thought. But a few seconds later she walked away, apparently unhurt. As we were running I noticed about 10 men running up behind us. Strange: everyone else was fleeing from the heat of the fire..."
http://www.oneworld.org/index_oc/399/dekker.html
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
El Al's 747-258F, 4X-AXG (the 'Golf'), went down on October 4th, 1992.
Killing 3 crew members, a single companion pax and 47 people on the ground.

I was 8 years old at the time, already an aviation enthusiastic.
My whole country was in a total shock, full of sorrow and grief.
And so was I.

Michael

 
User avatar
PW100
Posts: 2725
Joined: Mon Jan 28, 2002 9:17 pm

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sat Oct 05, 2002 1:47 am

It was a sad day indeed. For me it was one of those moments that one will never forget where one was and what you were doing when it happend.
I visited Leeuwarden [in the North of the Netherlands] that morning, and decided to pass by Schiphol [AMS] on my way back to the south [Tilburg]. I actually saw the 747 landing on 06...
Back at home, I was gearing up to check out the sports on TV when a news flash popped up reporting that a Jumbo had went down in an Amsterdam residential area. It still gives me lots of shivers...

PW100
Immigration officer: "What's the purpose of your visit to the USA?" Spotter: "Shooting airliners with my Canon!"
 
Ikarus
Posts: 3391
Joined: Mon Jan 08, 2001 10:18 pm

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sat Oct 05, 2002 3:07 am

... not to mention all the toxic chemicals & chemical weapons base materials that the jumbo (illegally) carried, causing Gulf-War-syndrom type diseases among the population who lived around the crash-affected area, and those who helped with the rescue efforts, even today...

A sad day indeed.

Regards

Ikarus
 
Guest

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sat Oct 05, 2002 3:28 am

indeed...I rarely felt so terrified as on this Sunday evening...I was seating in the kitchen, eating some fresh nuts and drinking must....after returning from the theater....I can still hear the voice of the "France-Info" reporter......"un Boeing 747 cargo de la compagnie isrélienne El-Al s'est donc écrasé sur un immeuble de la banlieue d'Amsterdam..." . I couldn't believe what I was hearing...and rushed to the TV, where I dicovered images from hell......
I remember this as if it was yesterday, and it's difficult to realize that a whole DECADE has passed since then.

Accidents are always very sad, and this one was also a terrible shock for me.

 
kl713
Posts: 748
Joined: Sat Aug 04, 2001 2:48 am

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sat Oct 05, 2002 8:30 am

I've been to the disaster area just a week after the crash....I was only 10 years old that time....and I was really impressed to see this kind of disaster with my own eyes....and I felt also very sad to see the tragedy.....I'm kind of raised in the Bijlmer, It was the place where I played football in the weekends with my cousins, where we celebrated the Hindu New Years festival (Holi) and it was the place where public transport agents ran after me and my cousins because whe travelled on the subway without a ticket Big grin, I've got a lot of family and friends living there...including people who saw the whole disaster happening that evening......the whole area and everything around is rebuilt and renovated and in a very good condition nowadays, but still I have that special feeling when I visit the park with "the tree that saw everything".......
732 733 734 73G 738 739 742 743 744 752 763 77E 773 77W 319 320 332 333 343 388 M11 146 DH4
 
joe pries
Posts: 1922
Joined: Sat May 13, 2000 1:04 am

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sat Oct 05, 2002 10:26 am

I worked on AXG many times while working for El Al Cargo- I remember coming in for the evening shift and one of the guys told me that G went down in AMS- i was shocked. Bless all the people killed that day

Joe
 
ORD Boy 2
Posts: 298
Joined: Fri Aug 25, 2000 12:25 pm

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sat Oct 05, 2002 12:53 pm

if ur jewish like me you should sa what is known as the mourners kadesh
 
ra-85154
Posts: 601
Joined: Tue Sep 04, 2001 10:16 pm

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sat Oct 05, 2002 6:45 pm

I still have all the newspapers from 10 years ago and although it is now really 10 years ago, it seems like yesterday...

The evening of October 4th , 1992 is one I'll never forget:

I can still remember my parents waching the 'Studio Sport' program, which was suddenly interrupted by the news and my most vivid memory is that while I was somewhere else in the room, I heard the newsreader say:

"some moments ago a Boeing 747 crashed vertically (nose-down) into a residential aera in Amsterdam".

We could not believe it, but no one knew at that time it was an all-cargo plane so we were expecting the worst..

Some time after the disaster, I visited the crash site with my parents, which was very impressive and almost surreal...

My thoughts go to all those people...

Martijn

 
avi
Posts: 879
Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2001 1:27 am

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sat Oct 05, 2002 9:57 pm

10 Years ago there was only one TV channel in Israel (Israeli channel) and no one knew what 'Breaking News' is.
The first time I heard of it was on the 9pm (Israel time) news and it said that "An El-Al Boeing 747 exploded mid air and crashed in Amsterdam".
At that time they didn't say it was a cargo flight nor it had mechanical problems.
There was short update and the rest of the news and the evening continued like nothing happened.

Even CNN continued its programs as usual so at that night I "discovered" Sky News. They didn't report on anything else.



Long live the B747
 
AWspicious
Posts: 2780
Joined: Fri Sep 14, 2001 7:47 am

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sat Oct 05, 2002 11:56 pm

"The tree that saw everything"
That's something I've often marveled at the thought - Trying to fathom the amount of history that must have unfolded in the presence of some of the most majestic trees in our world...

Is there someone or some place that can answer why the crew requested a different runway than was suggested by the air controllers? Final report indicates a safe landing would have been next to (if not) impossible, but, I can't help but wonder...

Sincere condolences goes out to all affected.


AW
Nevermind political correctness - Envision using your turn signals!
 
manni
Posts: 4049
Joined: Thu Nov 08, 2001 1:48 am

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sun Oct 06, 2002 12:54 am

Very sad indeed that accident but...
Ten years later people of the Bijlmermeer and rescue workers who where on the scene that night still suffering, having health problems, many have died already. Elal, illegally carried uranium onboard and this was never brought to anyones attention untill a couple years ago.
SUPPORT THE LEBANESE CIVILIANS
 
Guest

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sun Oct 06, 2002 1:23 am

Elal, illegally carried uranium onboard and this was never brought to anyones attention untill a couple years ago.

The uranium, which might be at the origin of health problems, was not "illegally carried"; it was part of aircraft.


* * *

Is there someone or some place that can answer why the crew requested a different runway than was suggested by the air controllers? Final report indicates a safe landing would have been next to (if not) impossible, but, I can't help but wonder...

The crew wanted the easiest landing, they didn't know they had lost 2 engines.

 
777236ER
Posts: 12213
Joined: Sat Aug 18, 2001 7:10 am

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sun Oct 06, 2002 1:31 am

Your bone's got a little machine
 
Guest

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sun Oct 06, 2002 1:39 am

Part of the aircraft???


Yes...you would know this if you had followed the news already years ago...or at least if you read your own links before posting them...:

In addition, only 152 kg of 282 kg of depleted uranium used as ballast in the Boeing's wings was recovered after the crash and fire.

 
manni
Posts: 4049
Joined: Thu Nov 08, 2001 1:48 am

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sun Oct 06, 2002 2:31 am

Toda,

Read the links 777236ER posted and you will soon learn that Elal does not come out of this with clean hands. Illegally might not have been the right word choice, but Elal witheld crucial information, about the freight carried, to the investigators.
SUPPORT THE LEBANESE CIVILIANS
 
User avatar
PW100
Posts: 2725
Joined: Mon Jan 28, 2002 9:17 pm

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sun Oct 06, 2002 3:14 am

AWspicious

What I've heard was that the pilot apparently had runway 27 in sight and was going to be lined up for a straight in. He didn't want the extra flight length that was required for 06, considering the fact that he was a heavy bird, with two engines down. He was dumping fuel all the way to impact...
ATC advised that runway 06 was in use and provided better wind conditions. Any runway other than 27 would require additional flight time. Especially 06 would require a relatively long flight around the airport to line up with that runway. With hindsight, that might have been the preferred option however, since he had sufficient height and speed available. He turned out to be too high/fast for the straight in 27. Therefore he had to do a 360 over highly populated residential areas of Amsterdam, which in the end proved to be fatal, not only for the crew but also for 40 people on the ground... very sad indeed.

Had he decided to go for 06, then the crash would most likely have been in a unpopulated area.

However the final word is and will/must always be in the cockpit and we can only guess why he ultimately decided to go for 27.

PW100
Immigration officer: "What's the purpose of your visit to the USA?" Spotter: "Shooting airliners with my Canon!"
 
wietse
Posts: 3630
Joined: Thu Oct 18, 2001 12:49 am

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sun Oct 06, 2002 3:18 am

That is correct, part of the manifest were never made public by El Al. I still remember this vividly, I was also just 8 years at that time and I live about 15k's from the crash site....

Wietse
Wietse de Graaf
 
El Al 001
Topic Author
Posts: 978
Joined: Sun Oct 31, 1999 11:50 pm

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sun Oct 06, 2002 4:55 pm

Guys, thank you very much for your replies.

Michael
 
Guest

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sun Oct 06, 2002 5:58 pm

depleted uranium as ballast in the plane's wings???

is that common??
 
Ikarus
Posts: 3391
Joined: Mon Jan 08, 2001 10:18 pm

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sun Oct 06, 2002 6:03 pm

Twaneedsnohelp: Yup. All classic 747s have it, and several other aircraft types. It's used as counterballast for some control surfaces, I believe. Also, I'm not entirely sure, but I think I once read it's also used to reduce the structural loads in flight (otherwise the lift would require a stronger structure) - but I'm really not sure about that explanation.

Regards

Ikarus
 
El Al 001
Topic Author
Posts: 978
Joined: Sun Oct 31, 1999 11:50 pm

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sun Oct 06, 2002 7:59 pm

I always heard that the reason that not all the uranium was found in the crash site was because the high temperature caused by the crash.

Anyway, AFAIK, uranium is no more used in commercial airplanes.

Michael
 
kl713
Posts: 748
Joined: Sat Aug 04, 2001 2:48 am

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sun Oct 06, 2002 8:12 pm

by the way: even more people died at the time than the 47 counted then, the Bijlmer is known for its large amount of illegal immigrants. They never traced those people........
732 733 734 73G 738 739 742 743 744 752 763 77E 773 77W 319 320 332 333 343 388 M11 146 DH4
 
Guest

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Sun Oct 06, 2002 11:23 pm

Actually, the aircraft was carrying ingredients for Israel's chemical weapons programme - including Sarin, a nerve gas.
 
Guest

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Mon Oct 07, 2002 4:59 pm

is that proven, or more baseless internet conspiracist bullshit?

tnnh
 
Guest

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Mon Oct 07, 2002 7:14 pm

The plane carried 190 litres of the chemical DMMP, which had been bought in the USA. This chemical can be used to make sarin nerve gas, but was in itself non toxic.

As it is said to be very explosive if in contact with water, some speculated that this was the reason why the pilot didn't try a sea landing; but it makes no sense...indeed, the crew didn't know up to which point the plane was damaged, they didn't know it had LOST 2 engines...so that a sea landing couldn't even enter into consideration (it is btw extremely dangerous to sea land a civil plane...I don't even know if a 747 has ever done such a thing; fro instance, a few years ago, a hijacked Ethiopian Airlines 767 run out of fuel and had to make an emergency sea landing; the plane didn't resist and broke in 3 parts, some passengers were killed; I thought it was a bad landing...but an Israeli AF specialist explained that the Ethiopian pilot did actually a spectacular job, and that his landing was a great success.)



 
avi
Posts: 879
Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2001 1:27 am

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Mon Oct 07, 2002 10:50 pm

I thought it was a bad landing...but an Israeli AF specialist explained that the Ethiopian pilot did actually a spectacular job, and that his landing was a great success.)

I have problems with that. He didn’t touchdown with level wings (the left engine made the first contact) and this is (maybe) why he turned over.

However, we should remember that the pilot had head injuries, he didn’t get any help from a second pilot (who was already dead if I remember correctly) and the hijacker was all over him.

Long live the B747
 
Rick767
Posts: 2613
Joined: Sun Jan 30, 2000 8:11 pm

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Mon Oct 07, 2002 10:59 pm

"He didn’t touchdown with level wings (the left engine made the first contact) and this is (maybe) why he turned over."

Clearly it was not a good landing, but as far as I am aware the hijacker was struggling with the Captain over control of the aircraft at this time. If they had touched down wings-level, the survival rate may have been much better.
I used to love the smell of Jet-A in the morning...
 
Guest

RE: Memorial Day For El Al Bijlmermeer Tragedy.

Mon Oct 07, 2002 11:04 pm

The plane was totally out of kerosene, maybe it's also not the easiest situation to pilot it...

All I know is that I was astonished to read (it was in Maariv) that a high rank IAF member said ha was impressed by the Ethiopian pilot.

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: alasizon, D328, FAST Enterprise [Crawler], flydia, Flydude1063, Gemuser, Google [Bot], HAL, ikolkyo, jetwet1, LamboAston, Miami, NolaMD88fan, piedfly, QANTAS747-438, seanpmassey and 260 guests