alexinwa
Posts: 868
Joined: Fri Sep 29, 2000 2:08 pm

Where Is NWA #33?

Wed Dec 29, 2004 10:12 am

I heard that is was sent to Moses Lake (MWH) due to fog in SEA. Is it still there? Will it be sent to SEA??
You mad Bro???
 
NWAFA
Posts: 1843
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2003 10:30 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Wed Dec 29, 2004 11:00 am

As of 5:58pm PST, the computer is still showing it in MWH (where is that?) and estimated to leave for SEA at 11pm.

THANK YOU FOR FLYING NORTHWEST AIRLINES, WE TRULY APPRECIATE YOUR BUSINESS!
 
PhilSquares
Posts: 3371
Joined: Sun Mar 28, 2004 6:06 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Wed Dec 29, 2004 11:11 am

KSEA 290156Z 00000KT 1/4SM R16R/1000V1200FT FG VV001 02/02 A2966 RMK AO2 SLP055 T00220022

KSEA 282322Z 290024 00000KT 1/4SM FG OVC001
TEMPO 0003 1SM BR BKN002
FM1800 15003KT 2SM BR OVC002
FM2000 15003KT 5SM -RA BR SCT008 OVC015

That is the latest WX from KSEA.

I guess I am surprised NWA has not gone to CATIII on the DC-10. They were CATIII capable new from Douglas.

MWH is Moses Lake
Fly fast, live slow
 
iowaman
Posts: 3874
Joined: Thu May 20, 2004 2:29 am

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Wed Dec 29, 2004 11:57 am

KMWH Grant County International Airport
Moses Lake, Washington, USA

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

FAA INFORMATION EFFECTIVE 25 NOVEMBER 2004
Location
FAA Identifier: MWH
Lat/Long: 47-12-27.7490N / 119-19-12.6830W
47-12.462483N / 119-19.211383W
47.2077081 / -119.3201897
(estimated)
Elevation: 1185 ft. / 361.2 m (surveyed)
Variation: 18E (1995)
From city: 5 miles NW of MOSES LAKE, WA

Airport Operations
Airport use: Open to the public
Sectional chart: SEATTLE
Control tower: yes
ARTCC: SEATTLE CENTER
FSS: SEATTLE FLIGHT SERVICE STATION [1-866-384-7323]
NOTAMs facility: MWH (NOTAM-D service available)
Attendance: CONTINUOUS
Wind indicator: lighted
Segmented circle: yes
Lights: DUSK-DAWN
HIRL RY 14L/32R ON LOW INTSST WHEN ATCT CLSD; ACTVT MALSR RY 32R - CTAF.
Beacon: white-green (lighted land airport)
Fire and rescue: ARFF index A
Airline operations: PPR FOR ACR OPNS WITH MORE THAN 30 PSGR SEATS 2200-0600 OR FOR ADDNL ARFF INDEX LEVEL SVC CALL AMGR 509-762-5363/5304.
International operations: US CUSTOMS USER FEE ARPT.

Airport Communications
CTAF: 118.25
UNICOM: 122.95
ATIS: 119.05 [24 HRS]
WX ASOS: 119.05 (509-762-5082)
GRANT COUNTY GROUND: 121.9 [0600-2200]
GRANT COUNTY TOWER: 118.25(EAST) 128.0(WEST) 257.8(EAST & WEST) [0600-2200]
GRANT COUNTY APPROACH: 126.4 385.5 [0600-2200]
SEATTLE ARTCC APPROACH: 134.35 370.9 [2200-0600]
GRANT COUNTY DEPARTURE: 126.4 385.5 [0600-2200]
SEATTLE ARTCC DEPARTURE: 134.35 370.9 [2200-0600]
EMERG: 121.5 243.0
IC: 126.4 385.5

APCH/DEP SVC PRVDD BY SEATTLE ARTCC ON FREQS 126.1/291.6 (MARLIN RCAG) WHEN APCH CTL CLSD.
Nearby radio navigation aids
VOR radial/distance VOR name Freq Var
MWH at field MOSES LAKE VOR/DME 115.00 18E
EPHr137/11.1 EPHRATA VORTAC 112.60 21E
EATr089/38.0 WENATCHEE VOR/DME 111.00 19E


NDB name Hdg/Dist Freq Var ID
PELLY 324/5.8 408 18E MW -- .--

Airport Services
Fuel available: 100 100LL JET-A1+
Parking: tiedowns
Airframe service: MAJOR
Powerplant service: MAJOR
Bottled oxygen: NONE
Bulk oxygen: HIGH

Runway Information
Runway 14L/32R
Dimensions: 13503 x 200 ft. / 4116 x 61 m
Surface: asphalt/concrete/grooved, in poor condition
FIRST 10000 FT AER 32R GRVD 150 FT WIDE.
Weight limitations: Single wheel: 85000 lbs
Double wheel: 155000 lbs
Double tandem: 320000 lbs
Dual double tandem: 600000 lbs

Runway edge lights: non-standard
NSTD HIRL LOCATED 50 FT FROM RY EDGE MARKINGS.
RUNWAY 14L RUNWAY 32R
Latitude: 47-13.539717N 47-11.425850N
Longitude: 119-19.590100W 119-18.590000W
Elevation: 1164.8 ft. 1162.7 ft.
Traffic pattern: left right
Runway heading: 144 magnetic, 162 true 324 magnetic, 342 true
Markings: precision, in good condition precision, in good condition
Visual slope indicator: 6-box VASI on left (3.00 degrees glide path) 4-light PAPI on left (3.00 degrees glide path)
Approach lights: MALSR: 1,400 foot medium intensity approach lighting system with runway alignment indicator lights
Runway end identifier lights: yes
Touchdown point: yes, no lights yes, no lights
Instrument approach: ILS
Obstructions: 25 ft. bldg, marked and lighted, 1081 ft. from runway, 35:1 slope to clear none

Runway 4/22
Dimensions: 10000 x 100 ft. / 3048 x 30 m
Surface: asphalt/concrete/grooved, in good condition
Weight limitations: Single wheel: 75000 lbs
Double wheel: 100000 lbs
Double tandem: 175000 lbs
Dual double tandem: 475000 lbs

Runway edge lights: medium intensity
RUNWAY 4 RUNWAY 22
Latitude: 47-11.804150N 47-12.766600N
Longitude: 119-19.975050W 119-18.017800W
Elevation: 1184.8 ft. 1149.7 ft.
Traffic pattern: left right
Runway heading: 036 magnetic, 054 true 216 magnetic, 234 true
Markings: nonprecision, in good condition nonprecision, in good condition
Visual slope indicator: 4-light PAPI on left (3.00 degrees glide path) 4-box VASI on left (3.00 degrees glide path)
Runway end identifier lights: yes yes
Touchdown point: yes, no lights yes, no lights

Runway 9/27
Dimensions: 4500 x 90 ft. / 1372 x 27 m
Surface: concrete/grooved, in good condition
Weight limitations: Single wheel: 100000 lbs
Double wheel: 150000 lbs
Double tandem: 270000 lbs
Dual double tandem: 475000 lbs

Runway edge lights: non-standard
RY 09/27 MIL LNDG ZONE LGTS ONLY.
Runway edge markings: RY 09/27 UNMKD.
Operational restrictions: RY 9/27 CLSD EXC MIL OPERATIONS.
RUNWAY 9 RUNWAY 27
Traffic pattern: left right

Runway 18/36
Dimensions: 3307 x 75 ft. / 1008 x 23 m
Surface: asphalt, in good condition
Weight limitations: Single wheel: 75000 lbs
Double wheel: 170000 lbs
Double tandem: 300000 lbs
Dual double tandem: 400000 lbs

Runway edge lights: medium intensity
RUNWAY 18 RUNWAY 36
Latitude: 47-12.495483N 47-11.978700N
Longitude: 119-19.791083W 119-20.039867W
Elevation: 1181.4 ft. 1181.0 ft.
Traffic pattern: right left
Runway heading: 180 magnetic, 198 true 000 magnetic, 018 true
Markings: basic, in good condition basic, in good condition
Touchdown point: yes, no lights yes, no lights

Runway 14R/32L
Dimensions: 2937 x 75 ft. / 895 x 23 m
Surface: concrete, in good condition
Weight limitations: Single wheel: 100000 lbs
Double wheel: 200000 lbs
Double tandem: 400000 lbs
Dual double tandem: 400000 lbs

Operational restrictions: RY 14R/32L IS CLOSED TO ALL NIGHT OPERATIONS EXCEPT TAXIING.
RUNWAY 14R RUNWAY 32L
Latitude: 47-13.440167N 47-12.980317N
Longitude: 119-19.806167W 119-19.588550W
Elevation: 1164.2 ft. 1165.9 ft.
Traffic pattern: right left
Runway heading: 144 magnetic, 162 true 324 magnetic, 342 true
Markings: basic, in good condition basic, in good condition
Touchdown point: yes, no lights yes, no lights
Obstructions: 9 ft. gnd, 620 ft. from runway, 100 ft. right of centerline, 46:1 slope to clear none

Airport Operational Statistics
Aircraft based on the field: 95
Single engine airplanes: 80
Multi engine airplanes: 12
Jet airplanes: 3
Aircraft operations: avg 284/day
33% transient general aviation
30% military
22% local general aviation
10% air carriers
5% air taxi
1% commuters


Additional Remarks
- FLOCKS OF LARGE BIRDS INVOF ARPT.
- HVY JET TRNG SFC TO 5000 FT WI 25 MI OF ARPT; PSBL WAKE TURBC FM LARGER ACFT USING RY 14L/32R.
- RY 18/36 AVBL AS AIR CARRIER TWY MOVEMENT AREA ONLY.
- TWY G NOT AVBL DURING NIGHT OPNS.
- RY DISTANCE MARKERS RY 14L/32R AND RY 04/22.
- RY 09/27 USED AS ASSAULT STRIP BY C-17 ACFT.
E80 1 US CUSTOMS USER FEE ARPT.

Instrument Procedures
NOTE: All procedures below are presented as PDF files. If you need a reader for these files, you should download the free Adobe Reader.
NOT FOR NAVIGATION. Please procure official charts for flight.
FAA instrument procedures published for use between 23 December 2004 at 0901Z and 20 January 2005 at 0900Z.


IAPs - Instrument Approach Procedures
ILS RWY 32R download (288KB)
MLS RWY 32R download (293KB)
RNAV (GPS) RWY 32R download (269KB)
VOR/DME RNAV RWY 22 download (234KB)
VOR RWY 04 download (227KB)
VOR RWY 22 download (223KB)
VOR RWY 32R download (241KB)
VOR-1 RWY 14L download (256KB)
VOR-3 RWY 14L download (236KB)
NDB RWY 32R download (251KB)
GPS RWY 04 download (209KB)
GPS RWY 14L download (212KB)
GPS RWY 22 download (204KB)
NOTE: Special Alternate Minimums apply download (25KB)

Departure Procedures
MOSES THREE download (191KB)

Other nearby airports with instrument procedures:

KEPH - Ephrata Municipal Airport (10 nm NW)
KEAT - Pangborn Memorial Airport (38 nm W)
KELN - Bowers Field Airport (51 nm W)
KRLD - Richland Airport (54 nm S)
KPSC - Tri-Cities Airport (57 nm S)

 
707437
Posts: 136
Joined: Fri Nov 28, 2003 5:51 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Wed Dec 29, 2004 12:01 pm

Being that this is an international flight. Are the passengers allowed to get off the plane at MWH or are they hostage on it until it reaches Seattle??? (To clear customs / TSA)

MWH has a big enough runway for anything but I doubt that it has enough of a terminal to debark a DC-10. . ?

It would suck sitting on that old DC-10 on the ground for nine hours. . .

Does anyone know any actual details?
 
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clickhappy
Posts: 9042
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Wed Dec 29, 2004 12:01 pm

god, those poor pax! They say the fog will lift later this evening, it is still pretty thick as I type this.
 
iowaman
Posts: 3874
Joined: Thu May 20, 2004 2:29 am

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Wed Dec 29, 2004 12:08 pm

Being that this is an international flight. Are the passengers allowed to get off the plane at MWH or are they hostage on it until it reaches Seattle???

Well there is customs at MWH, although at a fee. As far as being able to get off the plane i don't know.

 
PhilSquares
Posts: 3371
Joined: Sun Mar 28, 2004 6:06 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Wed Dec 29, 2004 12:11 pm

Generally, with any divert the passengers are not allowed to deplane.
Fly fast, live slow
 
neilalp
Posts: 1009
Joined: Tue Apr 04, 2000 3:16 am

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Wed Dec 29, 2004 2:10 pm

Isn't 10 hours becoming a long time with no food and bathroom? Sounds like DTW snow storm of 2000 all over again
 
B777ER
Posts: 431
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Wed Dec 29, 2004 2:28 pm

Geez...maybe they should have gone to PDX and with customs there, they could have deplaned and been bused to SEA right up I-5.
 
sea2pdx
Posts: 56
Joined: Wed Dec 29, 2004 6:26 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Wed Dec 29, 2004 6:34 pm

this is rumor only, but its my understanding that the crew of 33 timed out once they got to mwh and that nw was going to fly a crew from msp into mwh to bring the dc-10 over to sea. when i last checked at work tonight, about 9.00p, 33 was showing an eta into sea of 1.45a.
 
ANCFlyer
Posts: 21391
Joined: Mon Nov 15, 2004 3:51 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Wed Dec 29, 2004 7:22 pm

Geez...maybe they should have gone to PDX and with customs there, they could have deplaned and been bused to SEA right up I-5.

I'm with you!
Certainly they let them off the plane? Certainly NW could pay the Customs fee? Certainly Customs could waive the fee in this "exigent circumstance"? Even with one or two agents at MWH, and the length of time to clear customs, it would be worth the effort. Certainly the aircraft was catered if nothing else?

Hell, in ten hours they could have cleared customs, offloaded baggage, gotten chartered buses, gone bus from MWH-SEA.

FYI: Current Status as of 0143 Alaska Time:

Airline Northwest
Flight Number 33
Departure City (Airport) Moses Lake, WA (MWH)
Departure Time 12/29/2004 02:30 AM
Arrival City (Airport) Seattle, WA (SEA)
Arrival Time 12/29/2004 03:04 AM
Remaining Flight Time 00:34 (planned)
Aircraft Type McDonnell Douglas DC-10 (all series)
Current Altitude 0 feet
Current Groundspeed 0 mph
Flight Status Planned

Quite obviously this shows the aircraft still on the ground at MWH. As Alaska time is 1 hour earlier than Washington State time, this shows the flight still grounded 15 minutes past it's 'planned' departure from MWH.




[Edited 2004-12-29 11:46:11]
FOR THOSE THAT FOUGHT FOR IT, FREEDOM HAS A FLAVOR THE PROTECTED WILL NEVER KNOW OR UNDERSTAND
 
PhilSquares
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Joined: Sun Mar 28, 2004 6:06 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Wed Dec 29, 2004 7:28 pm

I am sure in 20/20 hindsight PDX would have been the most logical choice. However, the real issue is probably they didn't have the fuel to go to PDX. HWH is a short jump from SEA and therefore would require less fuel. In addition, I am sure the crew probably held there for as long as they could before having to divert to MHW.

The real issues is how many diverts in the DC-10/year does NW have vs. how much it would cost to get the aircraft back to CATIII.

Fly fast, live slow
 
isitsafenow
Posts: 3413
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 3:26 am

The crew did time out. There are no customs at Moses Lake. According to this mornings publications, after a while on the plane, the pax were permitted into the terminal area only.

Flt 33 circled SEA a while before diverting to Moses Lake. The plane was suppose to leave MHW for SEA about 5 30 am PST,according to the NWA website.
If it did or not, I have no idea.
safe
If two people agree on EVERYTHING, then one isn't necessary.
 
ctbarnes
Posts: 3269
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 3:38 am

According to NW's website flight NW33 finally landed at SEA at 6:26 AM this morning.

There's got to be a better way to handle diversions than this! If they landed at PDX or YVR at least the passengers and crew could get off the plane and go through customs. I really feel for both the passengers and the crew on that flight.

Charles, SJ
The customer isn't a moron, she is your wife -David Ogilvy
 
pdxtriple7
Posts: 641
Joined: Mon Dec 27, 2004 6:27 am

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 4:21 am

Just heard on the local news in Portland that the plane was delayed in leaving AMS due to deicing, and then they were low on fuel with the fog, so diverted to Moses Lake where they weren't able to use customs. 10 hour flight turned into 25 hour flight.
 
dash8tech
Posts: 708
Joined: Mon Jul 05, 1999 8:40 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 4:23 am

As a sidenote, NW's -10's may be CATIII but if a system/component is MEL'd that is required for CATIII ops then a CAT III approach cannot be carried out.
 
lamedianaranja
Posts: 1195
Joined: Mon Nov 08, 2004 1:21 am

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 4:24 am

Are you sure they don't have CATIII or are planning to get it? It would come in handy too for AMS/SPL, where this flight came from, by the way. NW diverts a lot when we are foggy here in AMS, but other airlines who do have CATIII also. This is then due to restricted runway use in the weather conditions and too much traffic, the aircraft only having so much fuel left to hold and so on.
I wish that all skies were orange and blue!!
 
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clickhappy
Posts: 9042
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 4:26 am

It got so bad even the local media covered the event

http://www.komotv.com/stories/34586.htm

Kudos that they got the plane type right, calling it a DC-10-30  Big grin
 
PhilSquares
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 4:51 am

My comments about CAT III were sarcastic in nature. NW refused to upgrade their DC-10 (both -30 and -40) to CATIII due to the expense and the fact the aircraft was not in their long term fleet plans. This was in the early 90's.

I operate in and out of AMS on a fairly regular basis. During the winter months, it's not uncommon to hear a NW DC-10 holding while everyone else is getting in using CATII/III.

To me it seems like an extremely short sighted decision that has come back to haunt them year after year.
Fly fast, live slow
 
ANCFlyer
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 5:23 am

Well, I wonder what kind of nightmare this will develop in to for NW? Twenty-five hours with over half of it sitting on a DC-10 in MWH. I'm not sure there were a lot of happy campers on that plane.

Anyone know if the aircraft got catered? Got the lavs pumped? Etc? Can't help the WX but you can sure help a bad decision about a diversion airport.

FOR THOSE THAT FOUGHT FOR IT, FREEDOM HAS A FLAVOR THE PROTECTED WILL NEVER KNOW OR UNDERSTAND
 
isitsafenow
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 5:26 am

ANCFLYER....according to the Seattle newspaper...no to all your above questions. On board water was rationed.
safe
If two people agree on EVERYTHING, then one isn't necessary.
 
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LN-MOW
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 6:21 am

A coworker of a friend of mine was onboard.

No toilet service available.
No wateruplift.
When the new crew got on, they got a technical problem that had to be fixed before they could proceed to SEA. That's why they didn't arrive until this morning.

MWH has no facilities for widebody diversions other than a long runway and low landing fees.

- I am LN-MOW, and I approve this message.
 
ANCFlyer
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 6:42 am

I guess I'd have to ask this question then . . .

Why the hell divert to MWH if it was, obviously, woefully inadequate for a wide-body. If there's an onboard emergency obviously you divert to the nearest capable field. If it was a "routine" WX diversion, why pick MWH? No facilities for the a/c . . . no customs . . . who made that call and why?

Fuel?
WX in PDX?
WX in YVR?

I've been aboard a few diversions, all due to destination WX and they were all to airfields capable of handling the aircraft. Only once, CO2 GUM-HNL-IAD, when we diverted to ABQ did the pax stay on board, but in COs usual fashion they flight was catered, breakfast for everyone, IFE, Booze, etc. We were there 4 hours

It will be interesting to see how this plays out . . .
FOR THOSE THAT FOUGHT FOR IT, FREEDOM HAS A FLAVOR THE PROTECTED WILL NEVER KNOW OR UNDERSTAND
 
PhilSquares
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 6:56 am

Most likely the scenario went something like this...

YVR and or PDX weather may not have been suitable for an alternate. Thus MWH became the most logical choice.

The flight probably arrived at SEA with enough fuel to go to either PDX or YVR, weather permitting. However, the forecast may have showed SEA to come back up to CAT I minimums in a very short period of time, or the RVR could have been up and down. The crew, with coordination from dispatch, probably elected to hold in the SEA area until the RVR came up. That's where the problem began. You really get yourself between a rock and a hard spot. Holding hoping the RVR comes up. Finally when it doesn't you're stuck and have no option but go to MWH.

I know NW uses MWH on a frequent basis, but then again, normally the WX in SEA is such that the RVR does come back up during the day..
Fly fast, live slow
 
filejw
Posts: 312
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 7:04 am

I'm sure Moses Lake was used because it was the closest legal alternate.Less alternate fuel means more revenue payload.And remember the U S government kept those people on the A/c not NWA.
 
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LN-MOW
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 7:36 am

PDX was fine - they had quite a few diversion .. Several TZ, DL, HP and UA-flights went there. For some reason NW always seems to use MWH .. probably because of the low landing fees. The airport is quite OK for a gas-and-go, but if something happens - you're out of luck .....

Customs- and immigrations clearance can however also be an issue at PDX .. we had an L-1011 diverting there a few weeks ago and we were considering bussing the pax to SEA, but we couldn't get the passengers cleared.
- I am LN-MOW, and I approve this message.
 
ANCFlyer
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 7:38 am

I'm quite sure our friends at the Dept of Homeland Security are truly to blame for having those folks trapped on that a/c.

My only question for NW is the diversion to MWH and the reasons an different alternate wasn't selected. One of the possibilities you outlined . . . fuel/revenue payload.



FOR THOSE THAT FOUGHT FOR IT, FREEDOM HAS A FLAVOR THE PROTECTED WILL NEVER KNOW OR UNDERSTAND
 
jc2354
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 8:32 am

Does anyone know if McChord AFB was also fogged in?
If not now, then when?
 
doug_or
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 8:55 am

PDX is slightly closer to SEA than Moses lake. I don't know what their inbound route was, but if they diverted before even trying to get to SEA, then MWH would have been closer to their route. Of course if they were that far south, then PDX wouldn't have been much further than SEA.
When in doubt, one B pump off
 
ctbarnes
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 9:08 am

Of course what would really solve this problem is putting an A330 on the route...

Charles, SJ
The customer isn't a moron, she is your wife -David Ogilvy
 
Bronko
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Joined: Tue Jul 03, 2001 3:28 am

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 12:16 pm

Anyone know how the NWA relief pilots from MSP flew to Moses Lake? Did NWA fly them on a NWA mainline aircraft or perhaps a business jet?

EDIT: Looks like it was a charter of some sort, the web article was updated with this:

But Castle said passengers were told the new crew had been delayed because their charter plane had a flat tire.

Here is another article detailing this ordeal:

http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/traveloutdoors/2002133701_plane29m.html

[Edited 2004-12-30 04:18:54]
Jet City Aviation Photography
 
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clickhappy
Posts: 9042
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 12:25 pm

Dave, they flew into Moses Lake from FCM (Minneapolis) on a Citation 560.

Royal
 
Bronko
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 12:43 pm

Thanks Royal. Can't believe the chartered aircraft had a flat tire on top of everything else.
Jet City Aviation Photography
 
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flybynight
Posts: 1156
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RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 1:44 pm

Why does this seem to happen to NW? Remember the episode in Detroit a few years ago when passenger where stuck on the tarmac for something like 10 hours?
Without knowing the facts, Moses Lake seems like a weird choice.
http://www.komotv.com/stories/34586.htm

According to this article the DC10 circled before heading east to MWH. Is it possible NW goes there because it is less expensive? PDX seems to be the natural choice since it handles international travel everyday.

As much as I admire looking at the DC10, it just seems to be another reason to me not to step on a NW plane (until the A330 takes over).

Had the flight gone to Portland everyone could have cleared customs and been bused. If the flight truly did circle near SEA, I would think PDX is almost the same distance as MWH.
Sounds like a $$ decision by NW at the inconvience of their passengers. I could certainly be wrong, but something smells a little rotten to me
Heia Norge!
 
baw716
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Joined: Thu Nov 20, 2003 7:02 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 3:22 pm

NW33 arrived KSEA at 0630am lcl time this am (Dec 29), according local news reports.

The last delay at MWH had to do with a mechanical which delayed the departure after the flight crew arrived from MSP (along with a ground handling crew to prepare the aircraft for departure).

As to why the crew decided to go to MWH instead of PDX, there are many theories, all of them very plausable. I like the penny pinching concept, but I don't believe NW is that dumb. The amount of handling customer claims and settlements in lost revenue and free tickets will far exceed the cost of a diversion to PDX or YVR.

I rather think that there was an operational decision involved. I do not think that the Captain would put the airplane on the ground at MWH when he could go to PDX and bus the pax up to SEA. I think there may have been another factor involved. I have seen discussion above that the DC10s were not CATIII equipped. I would not be surprised about that. These aircraft are quite old and if you are looking to really save costs across the airline, then don't equip 20+ year old aircraft with CATIII equipment and modern FMCs, don't uptrain the pilots to CATIII standard on a fleet type that is not so equipped. Plus, with the CATIII quals, they have to pay the pilots at a higher premium than CATII rated pilots. So, if SEA was below at or below CATIIIb, PDX was at CATIIIa, and YVR presented too many issues (diversion to Canada in a non-emergency situation is frowned upon by the Canadians).

If I were to offer an educated guess, I believed two things happened: They took a two hour delay after push back in Amsterdam. I don't know if the aircraft started up and held running for any period of time; but if that did, that ate into his holding time. He had a critical fuel problem, because with a fuel pax load and a 10 hour flight, he was probably at or near MTOW. This means he down loaded his ZFW to board sufficient fuel for a company standard fog forecast fuel plan (trip time plus X hold time plus diversion flying). SO, if he burned off any fuel at Amsterdam, he may have burned off just enough to compromise his ability to hold for any significant period of time at SEA.

The second thing that of which I am reasonably certain is that the crew was not near the end of their time, they were over it. They had to rest. They had been in the aircraft around 15 hours before the diversion and even with a reserve pilot in the back, a DC10 requires two pilots plus an engineer. This means even with an extra pilot, would they have required a second engineer? That is a lot of flight crew.

If they were enough over their time, then they had to get down. This is the point where people, even professionals make mistakes. I see two scenarios: 1) the Captain waited too long to divert and closed the door to GEG. This committed him to YVR, MWM or PDX.
2) If there was fog at PDX and no fog at MWM and the crew was tired, then he took the safest option and flew to MWM where there was no fog and an easier landing profile

Either way, I do not believe that NW corporate had anything to do with the operational decisions regarding NW33 other than those made by their operations control and flight dispatch. I do believe that a number of factors, including just plain dumb luck MAY have caused some questionable decisions.
I do believe that if the weather at GEG was within CAT II limited, there should have been a diversion to GEG, no questions asked and waited out the delay at GEG, or cleared the pax out of GEG and bused them to SEA. At GEG, they would have had options. At MWM, there was nothing. They were on that aircraft nearly 30 hours...no food or water. All they got for their inconvenience was a free ticket and that was only after they got together and signed a petition to NW that they would make their lives HELL if they did not give the passengers more than the $200 certificates they were offering. Of course, a domestic ticket on NW is not much more value to those passengers in Europe, is it?

Where NW bears responsibility is operating 20 year old aircraft on routes where CATIII aircraft are a must, especially on long haul routes that are compromised by weather in the winter (SEA, MSP, PDX, GEG, and AMS, FRA, CDG and other destinations in Europe). The A330 has all the required equipment. They just need to get them online fast. I love the DC10, but without the updated equipment, it just can't fly in the kind of weather we have come to expect to land in safely.

baw716
David L. Lamb, fmr Area Mgr Alitalia SFO 1998-2002, fmr Regional Analyst SFO-UAL 1992-1998
 
filejw
Posts: 312
Joined: Mon Sep 18, 2000 2:58 am

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 3:34 pm

Baw 716 ,
Just to let you know your thinking is not even close to the way NWA operates.Plus you for got High Min. Capt.
 
baw716
Posts: 1461
Joined: Thu Nov 20, 2003 7:02 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 4:36 pm

Filejw,
If I am wrong, please explain where I am in error...just don't tell me I am wrong. I would certainly benefit from the explanation, as would all the other folks on the forum who might share my, or your view, of things.

By the way, I never said my version of the events was "right". I shared my views of what MIGHT have transpired. Also what do you mean by "you for got High Min. Capt? I presume you meant something about the the Capt who was over on hours...please clarify.

Thanks
baw716
David L. Lamb, fmr Area Mgr Alitalia SFO 1998-2002, fmr Regional Analyst SFO-UAL 1992-1998
 
PhilSquares
Posts: 3371
Joined: Sun Mar 28, 2004 6:06 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 6:53 pm

At NW you don't get paid more for a CAT III vs. CATII vs. CATI. In addition, every DC-10 was CATIII when they left the factory. All the DC-10-30s NW purchased were CATIII when they arrived at NW. This was a business decision not to keep the -30s CATIII qualified, which sadly was the wrong decision!

FYI a "high mins" capt is someone who has just checked out in the a/c. He has to have 50 hours if he's been a capt before at that airline or 100 if this is his first command. His minimums are increased by 100' and 1/4 mile.
Fly fast, live slow
 
DTWINTLFLYER
Posts: 293
Joined: Sat Jul 05, 2003 11:24 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Thu Dec 30, 2004 7:41 pm

looking back now ..things should have been done differently but if you read the article between weather in moses lake/customs regulations etc things were unavoidable after the a/c initially diverted to moses lake. BUT pax were allowed off the plane to stretch..food was delivered about 6 hours after landing (don't forget they were fed twice during the flight and the last time being right before landing) and they were given something for their pain/suffering.....Again, not the best situation and I am sure someone will review the decisions that were made. Not a glowing day for NW, but the company did try everything they could at the time to fix the problems. I would hope NW will not use Moses Lake again unless they have to as a diversion airport because it is certainly not prepared to handle an international flight...

10-hour flight turns into 28-hour ordeal

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

A 10-hour flight from the Netherlands stretched into 28 as passengers diverted from landing at Sea-Tac Airport by fog sat on the ground in Moses Lake, stuck on the plane because of customs regulations.

Food and water ran short for the approximately 300 passengers aboard Northwest Airlines Flight 33, and the toilets stopped working as the hours dragged on. At least two passengers were treated for medical conditions before passengers were finally allowed to stretch their legs late in the evening.

The flight finally arrived at Sea-Tac at 6:26 a.m. yesterday, 18 hours after its scheduled 12:30 p.m. Tuesday arrival.

Heavy fog at Sea-Tac forced the crew of the DC-10-30 to circle Sea-Tac until fuel ran low and the plane had to be diverted across the Cascades to Grant County International Airport in Moses Lake.

Since embarking on what was supposed to be a 10-hour non-stop flight from Amsterdam, passengers already had been on the plane for about 12 hours by the time it arrived at 2:20 p.m.

Passengers had to wait until another crew arrived from Northwest headquarters in Minnesota. The flight was delayed further after the plane carrying the crew suffered mechanical problems, airline spokeswoman Mary Stanik said.

The crew finally arrived, but then the plane still wasn't able to leave because of bad weather in Moses Lake, Stanik said.

As passengers waited, food ran out and water had to be rationed. Pizza and soda were finally brought on board around 8:30 p.m., and the toilets also eventually were serviced.

Despite the Grant County airport's "international" moniker, passengers initially weren't allowed to leave the plane because the airport, a former Air Force Base, isn't equipped to screen so many international travelers.

They were finally allowed off the plane late in the evening, after airport officials temporarily cleared an airport terminal and posted sheriff's deputies at the entrances, effectively making it an international terminal.

Stanik said passengers would receive a gift pack that included phone cards and vouchers for a free airplane ticket anywhere Northwest flies in the United States and Canada.

"We apologized to our customers for any and all inconvenience," she said.

U.S. Customs spokesman Mike Milne said keeping the passengers on the plane for hours was unavoidable. He noted that bad weather and heavy holiday travel have created similar delays around the country.

"We're not doing it to be mean," he told The News Tribune in Tacoma.

"We're doing it to preserve the security requirements. We're required by law to screen these people when they come to the United States."
 
ANCFlyer
Posts: 21391
Joined: Mon Nov 15, 2004 3:51 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Fri Dec 31, 2004 1:36 am

Just saw a couple from Gig Harbor, WA - pax on that plane - on television. They didn't seem overly impressed with the ordeal, and who could blame them. Their frustrations, however, were not directed at NW, rather at Customs. And justifiably so.

The only question I have for NW in this instance, as I stated above, is why MWH? Questionable facility for a DC-10, no customs, or at least not enough customs to deal with that. Should have opted for YVR or GEG or PDX and not spent so much time on orbit. Just a very bad call by ops there IMHO.

Otherwise, all the BS these passengers endured was at the hand of the US Gov't - again.

Wonder how long the repercussions will bounce about on this issue.
FOR THOSE THAT FOUGHT FOR IT, FREEDOM HAS A FLAVOR THE PROTECTED WILL NEVER KNOW OR UNDERSTAND
 
ltbewr
Posts: 12501
Joined: Thu Jan 29, 2004 1:24 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Fri Dec 31, 2004 1:55 am

I saw that interview on the NBC's Today show, and it seemed to be a very unpleasant experience, although extremely minor vs the horrors of those suffering in the Tusami disaster. Unfortuntaly, with today's security madness (and needs), these people were put thourgh a very unpleasant experience. As noted above, this was a case where if anything can go wrong, it will and it kept cascading one problem after another. Clearly, as much as we like here some old DC-10's in pax use, maybe it's time to retire this bird from NW's fleet or rehab it and transfer it to freighter duty. Apparently there were some hot tempers on board, but not enough to bring charges against anyone. NW did offer compensation, like free tickets for a future flights, like as if they had been bumped. Many pax thought this was a stingy offer. I wonder how long before the first lawsuits are filed against NW and the TSA  Big grin
 
baw716
Posts: 1461
Joined: Thu Nov 20, 2003 7:02 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Fri Dec 31, 2004 5:00 am

To Philsquares
Thank you for the clarification about the pay situation for pilots at NW re: autoland premiums.

To DTWIntlFlyer
Thank you for your detailed information regarding the ground stop at MWH. I was aware that USCustoms allowed them off the aircraft after a time due to the toilets being inoperable (full). What we did not learn through any media and just have now learned from you is that they were fed and watered at MWH during the ground stop. This is VERY IMPORTANT information. This changes the picture significantly.

The reason that the passengers were not allowed off initially at MWH is that there was not security in place to secure 280 passengers in the small terminal facility that exists at Moses Lake. When the sanitary situation became very clear on board, USCustoms did allow them off and then if NW was able to get them fed and watered, then NW did what they could do within their power during the ground stop.

I am not surprised that there was an additional mechanical at MWH...usually an old aircraft that is not serviced within its normal operating cycle suffers small breaks during normal operations. With lavs in the conditions they were, I suspect that getting them dumped and serviced properly took a lot of time (and equipment) that was not present in MWH and had to be driven over from GEG (theory only...no facts). I still do not know for certain what the mechanical was at MWH that caused the extra hour delay in departure from MWH.

In any case, this extra set of facts changes my view of NW in this case. I still believe there was a poor decision regarding the diversion (holding too long at SEA making GEG as an alternate beyond the fuel remaining on board. With CATII equipment and CATIII conditions, they should have gone directly to GEG and waited. The aircraft could have been serviced there and the dispostion of the passengers dealt with at a Northwest station with an FIS facility.

However, NW cannot control the weather. Further, NW cannot control US customs (boy can I tell you stories about that!!!). Once the decision was made to go to MWH, they did the best they could within the set of circumstances they could. Flying in a fresh crew and bringing in a ground service crew and equipment (likely from GEG) is a major deal. There is a lot we do not know regarding how long the crew was legal at MWH before they had to bring in another crew, but I would imagine to set up a crew and fly them out from MSP is not something that is done at the drop of a hat.

However, this was not a public relations win for NW. They got slaughtered in the press locally in SEA and probably in AMS as well. NW offered each passenger a $200 certificate for their inconvenience (which was not required as this was a weather delay), but this was perceived as a joke by the passengers on board, who signed a petition and threated the airline if they did not give more. The airline gave them each a domestic economy ticket on NW only (which does the European passenger no good...unless they come back to the USA).

My last comment on this case is this: Having been in this situation myself a number of times for many reasons (remember, was AZ manager in SFO for four years), my stomach churned every time we took a weather delay, because explaining that we are at the mercy of weather is not something a passenger understands. They know it to be true in their rational minds, but emotionally, they still believe that the airline is at fault. In this case, where things are mixed, some things are beyond the carriers responsibility, others aren't, the best thing to do is to try to repair the relationship with your customer without breaking the bank. For an airline, any airline, this is a hard thing to do.

In this respect, I wish NW all the best.
David L. Lamb, fmr Area Mgr Alitalia SFO 1998-2002, fmr Regional Analyst SFO-UAL 1992-1998
 
AAplatnumflier
Posts: 958
Joined: Wed Sep 15, 2004 1:40 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Fri Dec 31, 2004 5:22 am

NW does pick some interesting places to divert to. One of ym friends was on one of their flights to DEN back in July and because of weather they diverted to Grand Junction....over my head. As said why not divert to PDX??
 
Ken777
Posts: 9102
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 5:39 am

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Fri Dec 31, 2004 6:30 am

It's almost impossible to fly a lot a not experience some sort of delay due to weather, illness on board while in the air, or equipment problems. The ability of the airline to handle the situation is one of the keys to keeping the pax as satisfied as possible. (Other keys are the communication from the captain and the efforts of cabin staff.)

It would seem that, after the problem a few years ago, NW would have a very extensive plan in place to ensure they didn't take another PR hit. They obviously don't and they got the hit they deserved. Maybe in the future they will be able to move similar problems up the corporate ladder a lot faster and get much faster response for the pax and crew.

Taking care of pax doesn't mean that executives take action after they read about the problem in the papers.
 
baw716
Posts: 1461
Joined: Thu Nov 20, 2003 7:02 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Fri Dec 31, 2004 6:56 am

Ken777
What is really odd about your comment is that NW DOES have an excellent aircraft incident response program. Reason I know this is that I trained on it during my tenure at AZ as at the time AZ in North America contracted its emergency response to NW for accident assistance in the USA. AZ does not have the number of employees necessary in North America to effectively do the job, so they selected Northwest and their program to provide the support..and from my experience wiith it, I can say that it is well thought out, organized and well presented, taught and drilled.

I must point out that this course dealt with major aircraft incidents (we don't call them crashes...too negative a term).

One would think that because they have such a good program put together for aircraft incident response that they would have a similar response program for non-injury incidents (e.g. diversions, etc.). Then again, you can have the world's greatest program, but if it doesn't get executed...??

These protocols are set up so the decisions are made at the appropriate level based on the degree of the incident. Again, execution?

I think you are correct that the management at NW needs to take a hard look at themselves in the mirror and ask themselves if the procedures are good, why don't they work? Who knows, the answer could be staring them in the face.
David L. Lamb, fmr Area Mgr Alitalia SFO 1998-2002, fmr Regional Analyst SFO-UAL 1992-1998
 
NWAFA
Posts: 1843
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2003 10:30 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Fri Dec 31, 2004 6:57 am

KEN777,

If you read the whole story you would see that once the aircraft was secure, (It was an INTL flight) the passengers were able to get off and thats when NWA DID get food and drinks for everyone.

NOT until the A/C was secured could this happen.

People are forgetting here, it was the UNITED STATES that would NOT let people into the country.
THANK YOU FOR FLYING NORTHWEST AIRLINES, WE TRULY APPRECIATE YOUR BUSINESS!
 
VEEREF
Posts: 560
Joined: Wed Jun 09, 2004 12:55 am

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Fri Dec 31, 2004 6:58 am

I have been the captain on a number of flights where I had to divert. Most of the time we try to divert to one of our own stations since it's easier for handling and possible re-accomodation, blah blah blah. But sometimes it's not always possible.

Only the Captain and company know why they went to Moses Lake instead of PDX, but I can assure you it was probably the best decision they could make with the info they had at the time.
We can certainly armchair quarterback all we want but I'm pretty sure we don't have all the info so that's really all we're left to do.

Nice job to the crew for not creating a potential fuel emegency by hanging around an iffy situation.

Something in addition to the CatIII discussion I don't think was mentioned. The flight crew must also be CatIII current and qualified as well as the a/c.
Someone brought up the subject of HighMins Captains. That simply means a Captain who is below a certain number of hours in seat or new equipment will have higher authorized weather minimums than a more experienced Captain, in a nutshell.
Airplanes are cool. Aviation sucks.
 
FA4UA
Posts: 777
Joined: Sat Nov 22, 2003 6:26 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Fri Dec 31, 2004 7:11 am

I just saw a report on CNBC about this flight. What a nightmare for all involved! Gotta wonder why they weren't able to bus those poor pax into SEA and there handle the customs and immigration.

CNBC said that NW did not return their call for comment. I wonder how much revenue this will cost NW in bad press?

FA4UA
The debate continues... Starwood or Hyatt... which is better
 
NWAFA
Posts: 1843
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2003 10:30 pm

RE: Where Is NWA #33?

Fri Dec 31, 2004 7:13 am

FA4UA,

Once again may we suggest that you read the FULL REPORT. This was an International flight, and it was the UNITED STATES that would NOT let them into the country...

THANK YOU FOR FLYING NORTHWEST AIRLINES, WE TRULY APPRECIATE YOUR BUSINESS!

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