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US Learns From Singapore Air AKL Near Disaster

Thu May 05, 2005 7:49 pm

The New Zealand investigation of a near-disastrous Singapore Airlines Boeing 747 tail-strike at Auckland two years ago has prompted an international move to change on-board technology.

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/index.cfm?c_id=556&ObjectID=10123518
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NZ1
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RE: US Learns From Singapore Air AKL Near Disaster

Thu May 05, 2005 8:07 pm

I have a wicked set of photos of that aircraft, 9V-SMT, if anyone is interested. Will have to wait until next weekend though as am on leave tomorrow. The Boeing guys did a remarkable job of repairing her.

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RE: US Learns From Singapore Air AKL Near Disaster

Thu May 05, 2005 8:13 pm

Quoting NZ1 (Reply 1):

Yes, thanks, That would be awesome
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RE: US Learns From Singapore Air AKL Near Disaster

Thu May 05, 2005 8:16 pm

Will email them to you next week Jason. Probably around Thurs/Fri

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zeekiel
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RE: US Learns From Singapore Air AKL Near Disaster

Thu May 05, 2005 8:20 pm

Surely, if the pilots got the V-speeds from a table or from the FMC they should have the common sense to know that 130 knots for VR (if the NZ Herald is right) is far too slow for an aircraft nicely loaded for a 9 hour flight to Singapore. I think that's marginally enough or not enough for a short haul 744 flight (depending on the gross weight of course).

Cheers

Zeekiel

[Edited 2005-05-05 13:22:08]
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RE: US Learns From Singapore Air AKL Near Disaster

Thu May 05, 2005 8:23 pm

Quoting NZ1 (Reply 3):

Sweet thanks. I think you have my gmail address. Enjoy your leave.

Quoting Zeekiel (Reply 4):

I think the cause was because the B744 was overloaded, mostly with fuel
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RE: US Learns From Singapore Air AKL Near Disaster

Thu May 05, 2005 8:35 pm

Quoting 777ER (Reply 5):
Sweet thanks. I think you have my gmail address. Enjoy your leave.

Yes I do have it, thanks dude.

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RE: US Learns From Singapore Air AKL Near Disaster

Thu May 05, 2005 10:16 pm

Quoting Zeekiel (Reply 4):
Surely, if the pilots got the V-speeds from a table or from the FMC they should have the common sense to know that 130 knots for VR (if the NZ Herald is right) is far too slow for an aircraft nicely loaded for a 9 hour flight to Singapore. I think that's marginally enough or not enough for a short haul 744 flight (depending on the gross weight of course).

Sure, but looking at the accident reports, the first few recommendations were all addressed to Boeing to do something to prevent tail strike on the 747 and apparently that was not the first time such recommendations have been issued to Boeing!
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RE: US Learns From Singapore Air AKL Near Disaster

Sat May 07, 2005 8:35 am

Quoting Danialanwar (Reply 7):
Boeing to do something to prevent tail strike on the 747 and apparently that was not the first time such recommendations have been issued to Boeing!

Does anyone have any info on what the other recommendations were about?
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RE: US Learns From Singapore Air AKL Near Disaster

Sat May 07, 2005 8:44 am

Quoting 777ER (Reply 5):
I think the cause was because the B744 was overloaded, mostly with fuel

Please read the report there was no overloading at all. The root cause was the crew entering the wrong ZFW into the FMS. What the NTSB recommended was a change in the FMS software to prevent such a mistake.
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RE: US Learns From Singapore Air AKL Near Disaster

Sat May 07, 2005 1:27 pm

This Irishman (or woman or not Irish) has nailed it on the head.

The 744 FMC (or for that matter all aircraft) have the pilots enter the ZFW of the aircraft (zero fuel weight being the dry weight plus payload).

What has been postulated is that there is no error message if the ZFW given is below the dry weight of the aircraft (in this case approximately 180 tonnes). Although I'm not sure if the 744 FMC software accounts for this fact.

So when the V-Speeds in the aircraft computer were calculated, the computer assumed that the gross weight of the aircraft (which is ZFW+Fuel) was say 250 tonnes (rather than the correct 350 tonnes for example).

The fuel wouldn't have been an issue as the fuel load is calculated at the dispatch office which assumes the aircraft is loaded correctly with the appropriate cargo and passengers.

Quoting 777ER (Reply 5):
I think the cause was because the B744 was overloaded, mostly with fuel

There is absolutely no way the dispatch fuel load could have been that badly overstated.

Remember the tanks of the 744 have about 177 tonnes of fuel capacity.

Cheers

Zeekiel
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