OPNLguy
Topic Author
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12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 6:25 am

ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
ltbewr
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 6:36 am

Good, now we are getting some answers. The weather, the choice of landing with a tailwind due to better visability from that direction the surfaces, the preliminary data are beginning to shed some light with this accident. There were also questions raised for further investigation as to a computer used to calculate weather and other conditions for landing.
 
planespotting
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 6:44 am

that's really interesting about the thrust reversers...

they weren't activated until 18 seconds after touchdown! that is an extremely long time, and I believe Southwest procedures are to initiate TR as soon after touchdown as practically possible (almost immediately in my own WN experiences).

It's a bit easier to see how this airplane wasn't able to stop near the end of the runway. I'd also be interested to find out why the aircraft wasn't able to land in the first 2000 feet of runway.

I'm not casting any doubt on the skill of the pilots or anything, I'm just saying that those seem to be the most glaring observations about why this airplane went long.
Do you like movies about gladiators?
 
Lando
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 6:49 am

Interesting information. Thanks for the link.
 
Silver1SWA
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 7:44 am

Very interesting. Thanks OPNLguy.

Has this been the first step in shutting up all the BS speculation? Judging from the activity in this thread (or lack thereof) my hopes are high!

[Edited 2005-12-15 23:46:33]
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
OPNLguy
Topic Author
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 7:58 am

Quoting Silver1SWA (Reply 4):
Has this been the first step in shutting up all the BS speculation? Judging from the activity in this thread (or lack thereof) my hopes are high!

Precisely why I posted it...

If I can't discuss it, providing a link to the source of the official info is the next best thing...  Wink
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
stuckinMAF
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 8:22 am

Quoting Silver1SWA (Reply 4):



Quoting OPNLguy (Reply 5):

Y'all don't sweat it, those of us who have common sense understand the situation and we'll still fly the Canyon Blue birds! We're sorry for your loss and that of the family on the ground, but we're behind you 110%!
"A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity" -Sigmund Freud
 
prebennorholm
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 8:25 am

This is almost a carbon copy of the Air France accident.

Marginal weather, bad RWY condition, pretty short RWY, tailwind, touch down much too far down the RWY, and most important - failure to decide upon a go around.

Much attention will probably be put on the TR's. But it's a fact that RWY length calculations must not take TR into account.

They touched down with 4500 feet to spare and needed 5300 feet to stop. If the flight crew had known what was going on, then they knew that they had to make a go around. Even if they might (barely) have made an (illegal!!!) landing in case of proper and perfect operation of both wheel brakes and TR.

It's the job of the PNF (in this case the FO) to command a go around. It seems to me that he failed. If he couldn't read the RWY markers due to visibility and/or snow cover, then that alone should have made him command a go around.
Always keep your number of landings equal to your number of take-offs
 
gift4tbone
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 8:31 am

Runway length seems to be the factor here. And by that I mean what was left of it. According to Airnav 31C/13C is 6522' long, and according to that report the 73G landed with 4500' left, thats 2022' long. I'm no expert, but IMO it seems it was the weather that caused this. In the report the vertical visibility 20 minutes after the flight landed was only 200'. If they were high on the GS, then wouldn't the instruments let them know? Audibly I mean. If not, then maybe they were too busy trying to spot the Airport. Visibility was somewhere between 3000-4000'. So if they ran 2000' long, they only saw the airport about 1000-2000' out. Again it all depends on how high they were. I'm gunna try and figure out the math with what information I have. BUT IMHO of what I know so far, I would venture to say this was a strictly weather related incident.

-Tony@PVD

Edited for proper wording

[Edited 2005-12-16 00:40:37]
Top 3 airports: PVD 23.9%(138 flights), PHL 14.7%(85 flights), PHX 10.2%(59 flights)
 
UAL744
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 8:56 am

Runway 31C is indeed 6522' long, but that by itself doesn't tell us much at all. Runway 31C has a displaced threshold due to obstacles on short final. The displaced threshold is the first part of the usable runway. This in effect makes the runway 5826' long. Furthermore, the glide slope on an ILS approach never brings you to the ground in the first foot of the runway - it usually "aims" you at a point about 700 feet down the runway. Officially, Runway 31C is 4925' long from the point of glide slope intercept to the end. So as far as the pilots touching down with 4500' remaining, I would say that is probably perfectly average for that runway. Probably the most contributing factors to this accident were 1)the tailwind, and 2)the fair to poor braking action conditions. What was the wind anyway? Furthermore, if Southwest Airlines has the autobrakes not installed on their airplanes (it is an option), then that may have been a factor as well.
 
Tornado82
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 8:56 am

Quoting Prebennorholm (Reply 7):

Much attention will probably be put on the TR's. But it's a fact that RWY length calculations must not take TR into account.

It's also a fact that at 90% of other airports where 737's operate, they'd have the 5300' they would have needed to stop that plane after landing a little long. Even GYY would have cut it. It's a case of wrong place to land a little long, at the wrong time.

Quoting Gift4tbone (Reply 8):
According to Airnav 31C/13C is 6522' long, and according to that report the 73G landed with 4500' left, thats 2022' long. I'm no expert, but IMO it seems it was the weather that caused this

You missed a step there hoss. http://204.108.4.16/d-tpp/0512/00081ILD31C.PDF
The landing length of 31C is actually 5826' If they landed with 4500' left, they were 1326' long not 2022' long.

It also says they would have needed 5300' to stop with the already accounted for conditions. Does that take into account the safety margins? If that's actually ground roll without any safety factor... I don't know if I trust only having a 526' margin of error, especially landing with a tailwind when she's gonna float.

Looking at the visbilities and whatnot, with snow coming down at that hard of a rate, unless that plane was literally following the brooms down the runway, the markings would have been covered over when he landed. I'm beginning to think this was a matter of time at an MDW that should have been closed that night, and 1248 was just the straw that broke the proverbial camel's back. And while not to take anything away from that poor family who were the victims, this could have been much, much worse if a fire had broken out, or if instead of hitting a car that plane hits a truck with hazmats in it.
 
redflyer
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 8:59 am

I wonder why the captain wasn't able to get the thrust reversers out of the stowed position but the FO was as soon as he realized they weren't engaged.

Also, it will be interesting to see how the data in the on-board laptop computer tool reconciles with aircraft performance.

Quoting StuckinMAF (Reply 6):
Y'all don't sweat it, those of us who have common sense understand the situation and we'll still fly the Canyon Blue birds! We're sorry for your loss and that of the family on the ground, but we're behind you 110%!

I agree totally. I love WN and will continue to fly them whenever I have domestic destinations to get to.
My other home is a Piper Cherokee 180C
 
OPNLguy
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 9:19 am

Quoting StuckinMAF (Reply 6):

Y'all don't sweat it, those of us who have common sense understand the situation and we'll still fly the Canyon Blue birds! We're sorry for your loss and that of the family on the ground, but we're behind you 110%!

Thanks...

My tongue is getting sore from biting it so much...  Wink
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
gift4tbone
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 9:24 am

Quoting Tornado82 (Reply 10):
It also says they would have needed 5300' to stop with the already accounted for conditions. Does that take into account the safety margins? If that's actually ground roll without any safety factor... I don't know if I trust only having a 526' margin of error, especially landing with a tailwind when she's gonna float.

I believe the 5300' included the TR not deploying until 18 seconds after landing.

Quoting Tornado82 (Reply 10):
You missed a step there hoss. http://204.108.4.16/d-tpp/0512/00081ILD31C.PDF
The landing length of 31C is actually 5826' If they landed with 4500' left, they were 1326' long not 2022' long.

Well that changes all the hard math I just did. Also according to that PDF, 13C would've given them a few hundred extra feet. So what is it exactly that made 31C better over 13C?

Landing right on the GS at 3 degrees with the RVR of 3000' would put them at an altitude of 157'. Well within the 200' vertical visibility.

OF course I wasn't there so who knows what they saw.

Assuming they were high on the GS of 3 degrees, (hence the long landing); They would've dropped below 200' about 3817' from the actual TD point. Or about 2009' from the proper TD point. Again well within the 3000' RVR.

I'm starting to change my mind about the weather causing it. I believe it had a factor, but maybe it seems, a Go-Around would've been called for.

Any pilots on here that can shed some light as to much space is needed to correct the GS? I would imagine speed has a factor with this.

-Tony@PVD
Top 3 airports: PVD 23.9%(138 flights), PHL 14.7%(85 flights), PHX 10.2%(59 flights)
 
jetstar
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 9:40 am

Quoting RedFlyer (Reply 11):
I wonder why the captain wasn't able to get the thrust reversers out of the stowed position but the FO was as soon as he realized they weren't engaged.

I do not know about the 737 thrust reverse system, but on a lot of other jet airplanes, the power levers must be pulled back into idle before the thrust reverse levers can be pulled up to deploy the thrust reversers. The captain stated that he could not deploy the thrust reversers but the FO was able to reach over and deploy them. I wonder if the captain just did not bring the power levers back to idle where the thrust reversers can be deployed thus extending the landing distance. Thrust reversers are most effective when deployed and lose their efficiency as the airspeed bleeds off.

Any 737 experts out there who can verify if the power levers must be in idle for thrust reverser deployment.
 
planespotting
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 9:53 am

Quoting Prebennorholm (Reply 7):

It's the job of the PNF (in this case the FO) to command a go around. It seems to me that he failed. If he couldn't read the RWY markers due to visibility and/or snow cover, then that alone should have made him command a go around.

I would not yet be laying blame toward anyone. It is likely that if the thrust reversers worked properly, the airplane would have stopped and we wouldn't have all of this message board fodder that we've had for the past week.

The factors in this accident are starting to become apparent, (i.e. the holes in the swiss cheese that the aircraft and crew had to "fly through" to get to the eventual accident)

1. It was a wintery evening, with lots of snow, low clgs, poor visibility and a slippery runway with "fair" breaking over a majority of the surface

2. The ILS for 13C wasn't operational? (i am inferring this based on the NTSB report) The NTSB says the ldg mins for 13C were higher than the mins for 31C, and therefore 31C was the only runway they could initiate an approach to under the CFR FAR 121 rules that the flight was operating under.

3. They were landing at Midway Airport, which yes, does have some of the most often used-shortest runways in the United States.

4. For some reason, the flight crew had a problem initiating the reverse thrust upon touchdown and weren't able to until quite a ways down the runway.


I am sure there are a few more here that haven't been touched or released yet.
Do you like movies about gladiators?
 
DLKAPA
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 10:14 am

Quoting Planespotting (Reply 2):

they weren't activated until 18 seconds after touchdown! that is an extremely long time, and I believe Southwest procedures are to initiate TR as soon after touchdown as practically possible

Did you read the full part of the report or just the parts where you could fully extract blame on the pilots?

Quoting UAL744 (Reply 9):
Furthermore, if Southwest Airlines has the autobrakes not installed on their airplanes (it is an option), then that may have been a factor as well.

WN has had autobrakes installed on their newer aircraft and are retrofitting the older ones with them. This particular aircraft had autobrakes and as per what the report said, they were set at full at touchdown.

Quoting Gift4tbone (Reply 13):
So what is it exactly that made 31C better over 13C?

Lack of usable ILS and bad minimums.
And all at once the crowd begins to sing: Sometimes the hardest thing and the right thing are the same
 
qwerty
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 10:27 am

Too bad they landed long. I was hoping for otherwise.
 
planespotting
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 10:33 am

Quoting DLKAPA (Reply 16):

Did you read the full part of the report or just the parts where you could fully extract blame on the pilots?

what? are you saying i am doing nothing but blaming the pilots? Thats ridiculous, i said nothing in either of my posts that puts blame on the pilots.

I was saying that the thrust reversal didn't operate as it normally should, nowhere did i say "i find it interesting that the pilots failed to initiate the thrust reversal until xx after the touchdown"

Obviously, these pilots are Southwest veterans, who KNOW how to operate the reverse thrust on the aircraft, and who normally do so at the proper time. I was saying that there must have been something odd or not-normal about the Thrust Reverser switch at the time of the landing that prevented them from operating it as they normally would.


try not to infer things from my statement that are not there.
Do you like movies about gladiators?
 
wjcandee
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 10:36 am

Oh, boy.

Well, despite the excellent discussion in the NTSB update about the performance calculations that were made by dispatch and discussed TWICE with the crew enroute, and the calculations made using the performance computer on route, all of which indicated that the aircraft should have been able to land safely...

CBS News reports (based of course upon the idiots at AP): "NTSB: Plane Had No Chance To Stop".

SunTimes: "FEDS: Plane Needed More Runway", stating: "Jim Hall, a former NTSB chairman not involved in the investigation, said the pilots landed the plane too late. 'You can come to the conclusion that the plane landed long; it touched down too far down the runway,' Hall said."

Tribune: "NTSB: Plane Touched Down Too Late" (at least writing their own article which referenced the careful calculations made before landing).

Somehow, these folks seem to have confused the *preliminary* calculations made now by the NTSB, which assume late reverser deployment and crappy runway conditions, with calculations assuming proper deployment.

Time for Southwest's vaunted PR staff to get out there on background and explain some of this to the runaway media. Despite taking body blow after body blow over my concern over how this would be handled by the media in my post the morning after the accident, I still think that there's a lot that WN needs to be doing to keep this runaway story from scaring flyers away from MDW in this and future seasons.

Best,

Bill
 
gift4tbone
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 10:52 am

Quoting Wjcandee (Reply 19):
I still think that there's a lot that WN needs to be doing to keep this runaway story from scaring flyers away from MDW in this and future seasons.

You may be right for the uneducated in this matter. BUT for those of us who know the whole story, or at least what we can get our hands on. (We dont listen to the media, especially when it comes to aviation, they know squat). We will keep flying to MDW. Not that I have ever been to MDW but once on a flt from PVD-PHX, but if the need every arises in the future, I will have no second thoughts.

-Tony@PVD
Top 3 airports: PVD 23.9%(138 flights), PHL 14.7%(85 flights), PHX 10.2%(59 flights)
 
wjcandee
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 10:53 am

Here's a question that should have been answered in the NTSB update, but was not: At or about the time at which the Captain attempted to pull the reverser levers, were there any flight conditions or control positions that would have caused them to resist being pulled? In carefully reading the words of the update, it appears to assert that the levers resisted being raised into the position that would lock the throttles at idle and deploy the reverser, not that they resisted applying reverse thrust after initial deployment. It would seem that the most probable source of a problem is different as to those two different possibilities, but I don't think that it's fair to speculate any further than that. It is also interesting that -- contrary to the initial media reports -- it's not that the FO "leaned over", as one report said, and helped the Captain yank the things into position. It appears that the FO activated the reversers "without a problem".

That's why it's going to take a while to reach conclusions about this incident. It would also have been helpful if the NTSB had reported its calculations as to how much runway would be required had the captain been able to deploy the reversers in a manner that he would have normally expected. Based upon previous reports, it appears that the plane had some room to land past the touchdown zone under those conditions.

Best,

Bill
 
PITrules
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 11:20 am

Quoting Gift4tbone (Reply 13):
Assuming they were high on the GS of 3 degrees, (hence the long landing);



Quoting Qwerty (Reply 17):
Too bad they landed long. I was hoping for otherwise

They did not land "long"! As UAL744 explained, and as most of us know, airplanes don't land on the first foot of the runway. So what is landing "long"? That would be a landing outside of the touchdown zone. By definition, the touchdown zone in the first 3000', or first 1/3 of the runway, whichever is less. If they touched down 1300' past the displaced threshold, they were well within the touchdown zone. They did not land "long".
FLYi
 
Derik737
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 11:21 am

Correct me if I am wrong, but looking at the information for 31C as UAL744 pointed out, the displaced threshold along with being on the glideslope for landing reveals that the crew only floated beyond where they should have touched down by probably a second and a half. So, saying they landed long is a bit misconstrued.

We ran the numbers and verified we could have landed a 737-800 on that runway with those conditions and had no problem if MAX braking and MAX reverse thrust was used at the proper times.

The key here is why did the Captain have trouble actuating the thurst reversers. I still find it hard to believe a mechanical problem existed. Yes, the throttles have to be at idle. I played with the throttles today on one of our 737-800's and you have just a little tolerance where the throttles can be a hair forward of idle to engage the reversers. When the throttles are at idle, it requires hardly any effort to pull the reverse levers out of the stowed position. They are also independent of one another.

Another thing that puzzles me is the statement that when the First Officer noticed the reversers were not deployed, he deployed them with no issues. Did the Captain give up right away? Why wouldn't he keep trying to deploy them all the way down the runway? Why didn't he say anything to the First Officer about the reversers not deploying?
 
2H4
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 11:29 am



People still seem to be confusing autobrakes with antiskid...




2H4


Intentionally Left Blank
 
qwerty
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 11:45 am

Quoting PITrules (Reply 22):
By definition, the touchdown zone in the first 3000', or first 1/3 of the runway, whichever is less. If they touched down 1300' past the displaced threshold, they were well within the touchdown zone. They did not land "long".

Whatever, but you're wrong.

On the 6,000+ 31C, I'd call anything not near 1,000 or under when the wheels spin up as long. Especially if my arse was in the pointy end of a -700 in the weather that existed on a contaminated runway.

[Edited 2005-12-16 03:51:20]
 
Tornado82
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 11:52 am

Quoting Qwerty (Reply 25):
On the 6,000+ 31C, I'd call anything not near 1,000 or under when the wheels spin up as long. Especially if my arse was in the pointy end of a -700 in the weather that existed on a contaminated runway.

I have to refer you back to this...

Quoting Tornado82 (Reply 10):
You missed a step there hoss. http://204.108.4.16/d-tpp/0512/00081ILD31C.PDF
The landing length of 31C is actually 5826' If they landed with 4500' left, they were 1326' long

These guys were almost within 1000' of the TDZ, the only problem is:

Quoting Tornado82 (Reply 10):
It also says they would have needed 5300' to stop with the already accounted for conditions.

They only had about 526' of play-room here. Even if the boys had put it down within 1000 even, there was still trouble to be had.

IMHO (and no I'm not just saying this to crucify the pilots... just stating my personal opinion) there should have been a go-around, and then a diversion. And not just this WN flight, but at that point everything should have either been holding or diverting... and with the claimed fuel load of this 737 after it's ATC holding over Indiana (claimed in the interview last week yet), they should have been diverting.
 
PITrules
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 11:54 am

Quoting Qwerty (Reply 25):
Whatever, but you're wrong.

On the 6,000+ 31C, I'd call anything not near 1,000 or under when the wheels spin up as long. Especially if my arse was in the pointy end of a -700 in the weather that existed on a contaminated runway.

Guess Again. Better yet, look up the definition of "touchdown zone" in the Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM).
FLYi
 
qwerty
Posts: 380
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 12:06 pm

You guys are sitting up front right?
 
PITrules
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 12:10 pm

What's that suppossed to mean? I wasn't up front, that's exactly why I am NOT second guessing these guys (unlike certain other individuals on this board) by implying they landed long. Instead, look at the facts, and you'll see they landed well WITHIN the touchdown zone.
FLYi
 
Silver1SWA
Crew
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 12:13 pm

Quoting Qwerty (Reply 25):
Whatever, but you're wrong.

On the 6,000+ 31C, I'd call anything not near 1,000 or under when the wheels spin up as long. Especially if my arse was in the pointy end of a -700 in the weather that existed on a contaminated runway.

He, along with UAL744's breakdown/explanation, is wrong because of what you personally "feel" to be considered landing long?
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
OPNLguy
Topic Author
Posts: 11191
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 12:14 pm

Quoting Qwerty (Reply 28):
You guys are sitting up front right?

Sure must have been crowded up there, there are so many here posting...  Yeah sure

Someone posted this earlier--maybe someone can tell us what appropriate minimums in use were... http://204.108.4.16/d-tpp/0512/00081ILD31C.PDF

[Edited 2005-12-16 04:21:01]
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
qwerty
Posts: 380
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2001 7:31 am

RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 12:29 pm

Ask the crew, I bet they considered themselves long for where they would have wanted to be that night for that WX. They would have been after the first 1,000 of 31. Or ask any other ALPA type you know.
 
Tornado82
Posts: 4662
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 12:39 pm

Quoting OPNLguy (Reply 31):

Someone posted this earlier--maybe someone can tell us what appropriate minimums in use were... http://204.108.4.16/d-tpp/0512/00081ILD31C.PDF

I posted it, twice actually.

The mins were 300 - 3/4, but then you told us in a prior thread about the HUD credit given which takes it down to 1/2. That wasn't my point when I said divert though, and like I said it was only my OPINION, but by saying divert I was referring to the contaminated runway. That approach chart doesn't speak about contaminated runways... it just tells you that you only had 5826' to land on. If it takes 5300' to roll out in those conditions according to the NTSB report itself, isn't the rule something like + 30%? 526' isn't 30%. That's the only thing I'm referring to. Obviously at DH if the pilots hadn't seen lights they would have gone around, so the cig/vis must have been above mins... and I'm not referring to that.
 
OPNLguy
Topic Author
Posts: 11191
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 12:43 pm

Then why post or refer to the above chart, since it wasn't in use?

The amount of misinformation and conjecture based upon assumed information on these various threads is just staggering...

[Edited 2005-12-16 04:52:55]
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
PITrules
Posts: 2109
Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2000 11:27 am

RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 1:09 pm

Quoting Qwerty (Reply 32):
Ask the crew, I bet they considered themselves long for where they would have wanted to be that night for that WX. They would have been after the first 1,000 of 31. Or ask any other ALPA type you know.

I am an ALPA type  Wink
The NTSB report said nothing of landing long. I think more significant factors are the tailwind, contamination level and type, and issues with deploying reverse thrust.
FLYi
 
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casinterest
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 1:15 pm

That has to be the most damning NTSB report I have ever seen. Also one to make a lawyer jump for joy.
He can sue the Airport/City for lack of proper facilities,
Sue the Pilot for judgemental error in landing,
Sue the Airline for landing policies not enforced.

Lotsa lawsuits to hand out.

Heck the passengers on the plane can probably sue for reckless endangerment.
Wow
Older than I just was ,and younger than I will soo be.
 
2H4
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 1:22 pm




Quoting CasInterest (Reply 36):
He can sue the Airport/City for lack of proper facilities,
Sue the Pilot for judgemental error in landing,
Sue the Airline for landing policies not enforced.



It's the United States. He can sue the maker of his toothbrush for the accident, and probably walk away with a settlement.

Litigation will be the death of this country.  Sad




2H4


Intentionally Left Blank
 
ckfred
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 1:48 pm

Here's my question. If 13C was below minimums, and the wind direction put 31C into a tailwind, then why was MDW accepting arrivals?

It's one thing to land with a tailwind with conditions that are good in terms of weather, visibility, and braking. But with low visibility, moderate to heavy snow, and fair to poor braking, it doesn't seem at all prudent to accept arrivals, when the runway has a tailwind, which will lengthen stopping distances.

The question I would like to see answered is whose call was it to switch to 31C, and did he or she consider closing MDW to arrivals until conditions improved? Also, with whom did the person who consult with, before deciding to continue to accept arrivals on 31C?
 
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lightsaber
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 1:48 pm

Quoting 2H4 (Reply 37):
It's the United States. He can sue the maker of his toothbrush for the accident, and probably walk away with a settlement.

Litigation will be the death of this country.

I'm remembering a quote from the bard...  biggrin 

I would *love* to have a look at this flight's blackbox engine and cockpit command log...

Lightsaber
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Tornado82
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 2:04 pm

Quoting Ckfred (Reply 38):


Here's my question. If 13C was below minimums, and the wind direction put 31C into a tailwind, then why was MDW accepting arrivals?

My sentiments exactly. It's not like we had a 10,000 ft runway to deal with the contamination and tailwind. If we're talking a place like IND, it's a whole different ballgame. Give those guys a runway with even just 7000 useable for landing and we're talking about the icestorm in the northeast right now, not this non-event regardless of the tailwind and contamination.
 
birdbrainz
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 2:55 pm

Quoting DLKAPA (Reply 16):
Did you read the full part of the report or just the parts where you could fully extract blame on the pilots?

Very simple: tailwind, poor weather, and slippery, short runway don't mix. Enough said. It's ultimately up to the pilots to decide if they want the approach. That's why they're there.

My father flew 737's and 727's for 30 years with UA, and has rejected approaches with tailwinds in good weather and long runways. He's dumbfounded they would accept that approach. (btw, he's usually very willing to extend the benefit of the doubt in most incidents.)

Quoting Derik737 (Reply 23):
We ran the numbers and verified we could have landed a 737-800 on that runway with those conditions and had no problem if MAX braking and MAX reverse thrust was used at the proper times.

So you're relying on everything going perfectly, and this is the result.

If SW's procedures allow & encourage such approaches to be accepted and executed, it doesn't sound like they're allowing for much to go wrong. This time it caught up with them.

Quoting Ckfred (Reply 38):
Here's my question. If 13C was below minimums, and the wind direction put 31C into a tailwind, then why was MDW accepting arrivals?

It's one thing to land with a tailwind with conditions that are good in terms of weather, visibility, and braking. But with low visibility, moderate to heavy snow, and fair to poor braking, it doesn't seem at all prudent to accept arrivals, when the runway has a tailwind, which will lengthen stopping distances.

Exactly! But even in that cases, there's nothing that says you need to accept that approach.
A good landing is one you can walk away from. A great landing is if the aircraft can be flown again.
 
S12PPL
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 3:26 pm

Quoting Planespotting (Reply 2):
they weren't activated until 18 seconds after touchdown! that is an extremely long time, and I believe Southwest procedures are to initiate TR as soon after touchdown as practically possible (almost immediately in my own WN experiences).

I would hope that is everyone's practice! lol.
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darrenthe747
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 5:13 pm

very interesting article. a lot of good points made by a lot of folks here. the two issues that are striking here is, one: the fact that the captain was unable to remove the thrust reversers from the stowed position, and the FO was.

and the other, as the fact that the preliminary calculations showed that it could have stopped in 5,300 feet of runway, or whatever it was.... the point is, as Birdbrainz said in reply 41, that this is like trying to figure a physics problem out that was handed to you in a classroom. We all know that the real world has a lot of other variables that can throw our calculations off some. So just because you can calculate that it SHOULD have stopped in time, does not mean it WILL stop in time.

It will be very easy, however, to say the pilots SHOULD have diverted or whatever. We weren't there, we don't know what was going on in the cockpit before this happened.
All animals are created equal, but some are more equal than others.
 
ikramerica
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 5:15 pm

Quoting Prebennorholm (Reply 7):
Marginal weather, bad RWY condition, pretty short RWY, tailwind, touch down much too far down the RWY, and most important - failure to decide upon a go around.

Well, since the pilot is the ultimate one responsible for the aircraft, I guess "most importantly" is valid, but I don't know that it is as much their fault as being fed bad information and then not being able to execute the PERFECT LANDING they would have needed not to crash.

Quoting Gift4tbone (Reply 8):
BUT IMHO of what I know so far, I would venture to say this was a strictly weather related incident.

That's just not true. This is strictly a human error, bad decision making accident. If MDW had been closed, the accident would not have happened, thus you can't blame the accident on the weather. You must blame it on who was ultimately responsible for choosing/allowing the landing.

Quoting Ckfred (Reply 38):
If 13C was below minimums, and the wind direction put 31C into a tailwind, then why was MDW accepting arrivals?

Been wondering that since I first heard about it, but of course we aren't allowed to point out the obvious until 6 months to 1 year later when all the facts are known. Otherwise it is wild speculation...  rolleyes 

AF358: plane should have diverted due to severe weather.
WN at MDW: plane should have diverted due to severe weather.

Whether it was ATC or the flight crew that were at fault is obviously something to be determined. The fact that both were human error was pretty damn clear from the first pictures and accounts. The length of runways or overrun areas or whatever were secondary. They only lead to the final result of the mistake. But neither caused the accidents.

Short runways don't cause accidents, the decision to land on them when conditions aren't suitable causes accidents. Longer runways just help mitigate mistakes or make decisions easier/unnecessary.

Lack of buffer zones don't cause accidents, bad landing decisions/executions that lead to overruns cause accidents. Buffer zones just help mitigate mistakes or make consequences of mistakes less severe.

It's amazing how people try to shift blame around.
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
 
ORD14R
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 6:05 pm

To those who mentioned possible litigation...

Chicago Tribune Article

One quote in particular stands out:

Quote:
"What this says is that there shouldn't have been a landing. The flight should have been diverted. The fallacy here is that the aircraft can land in a snowstorm," Ronald A. Stearney Jr., the lawyer, said. "Given the egregious nature of what we're finding out, there's only one thing to do--for Southwest to admit liability. They ought to come to the table and help this family put this behind them."

The Woods family's reaction to the safety board's report was "that Southwest murdered Joshua," Stearney said.

Wow.
 
thegreatchecko
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 6:56 pm

Quoting Tornado82 (Reply 10):
It's a case of wrong place to land a little long, at the wrong time.

Putting myself in the captains shoes (and please correct me if I'm wrong):

I'm already late, so screw the idea of rushing to be ontime.
I probably want to try to get into MDW to get my passengers to at least somewhere they expected to go.
They are reporting poor braking action in the last third of the runway (if my memory serves me correctly).
The OPC tells me I have room to land AND how much I have of breathing room.
I'm confident that I will land with less room using the thrust reversers.
I use my resources and everyone (FO, Dispatch) agrees that we can stop in the available runway (I sincerely doubt the Captain and Dispatcher would agree to putting that plane on that runway if there was any doubt as to whether it could stop).
I fly the approach on the calculated speed, have the runway environment in sight at DH.
I really can't tell how far I've floated (the markings are obscured by snow and darkness, all I have is lights)
Once I'm on the ground, I have to stop this plane no matter what (can't really go around at this point).
It takes 18 seconds for the thrust reversers to deploy (something I don't ever really expect to happen, I mean who even thinks about that happening) and I'd probably want to go around, but don't have enough runway.
I stand on the brakes.
I run off the runway.

Yeah hindsight is 20/20. Knowing my thrust reversers would stick on landing, I would've gone around, but I don't know that on short final.

Is this one going to be stuck on the pilots, yes of course, because pilot error is inevitable (an a hell of a lot more convienient as a probable cause for the NTSB). But I think that the weather is a contributing factor, I haven't looked at the weather, but it seems like no one really knows what the weather was doing at the time of the incident.

If my memory serves me correctly, they were reporting light winds, ie a light tailwind. But I also recall the news reporting gusty winds at the time. Unless I ask for a windcheck (which probably isn't something I'd really worry about until I breakout because I have no reference to gauge groundspeed), I have no clue what current winds are doing.

So, could the pilots have done things differently, yes. But taking into account the information they had at hand, would I have done anything different...no.

And before you start saying I have no experience to gauge this on, I've done my fair share of flying is poor vis, snow, etc.

Quoting Birdbrainz (Reply 41):
My father flew 737's and 727's for 30 years with UA, and has rejected approaches with tailwinds in good weather and long runways. He's dumbfounded they would accept that approach.

With all due respect to your father, I find it extremely hard to believe that he has NEVER landed with a tailwind. There is a big difference between light tailwinds and strong tailwinds.

Again, feel free to poke holes...I'm no 737 driver, but I am a pilot thats been around the block a couple of times.

GreatChecko

Okay, so I found the weather, 100@11 is a bit high for a tailwind. But I still would stand behind my decision if all my resources told me I could land on that runway (which they did).

[Edited 2005-12-16 10:59:42]
"A pilot's plane she is. She will love you if you deserve it, and try to kill you if you don't...She is the Mighty Q400"
 
wjcandee
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 7:12 pm

Someone needs to be stomping all over this lawyer crap as soon as possible. This shows the difference in terms of media focus, etc. when there is "collateral damage" of this kind. Had the people just been injured, and nobody died, this wouldn't be getting the same kind of play. What NTSB "report"; this was an update of factual information with no conclusions. The lawyer is less able to interpret the data than many of the posters here who really don't have sufficient context in which to filter it. The lawyer, however, gets points for Most Outrageous Spin. The problem for him is that he's shooting his load now, two years before he'll ever be able to get this thing in front of a jury. It's only "news" for so long as there are developments that he'll be asked to comment on. Now that the onsite investigation is wrapped up, the NTSB folks pack up and go back to DC, so there won't be many more developments that constitute "news", and he'll have to crawl back under his rock. Doubtless he likes seeing his name in the paper, and he'll find some ways to fan the flames, complaining to the media that he hasn't been given this or that piece of information, but pretty soon there's nothing more for him to talk about. After you say, "Southwest murdered our baby," there really isn't anywhere else to go. The only danger here is that the media gets it in their heads that they should campaign for arrestor beds. Because most people in the press do want to use their perceived power for the good of man, if they think they're doing the right thing by hammering away about arrestor beds, they'll keep on doing it. Someone needs to throw some cold water on that. (And how is it that we're a week or so down from the event, and nobody has pointed out how difficult it is to land a full 747 at ORD with a quartering tailwind? And how little "margin for error" there is there for that? And how the effin' A380 is going to be even more of a challenge just to move around the airport? Imagine one of those blundering around some Tenerife-like fog-shrouded runway. Shudder.) MDW may have shorter runways, but it also isn't landing aircraft that are the reason that these other airports have longer runways! I personally find it to be fun as hell to land at LGA in weather on a 767-400, because it's as much deceleration as I'm likely to experience short of a car wreck. If I really worried about runway overruns, I'd insist upon flying only into and out of PSP, where the biggest aircraft they get is a 737, and the biggest aircraft they can take is...well...pretty much anything. But it's late and I digress.

Suffice it to say that this lawyer has kind of mishandled what he should be playing as a relentless drip, drip, drip of commentary ("Well, it's distressing to hear that X, but we don't want to rush to judgment. It certainly does raise concerns, particularly in light of Y. You can quote me that this certainly makes us wonder about Z. I have personally asked A to provide us with B; call me in a couple of days and we'll see what they tell us. You know, Consultant M is really knowledgeable about this area, and I think you should ask him what he thinks of it. Here's his number. The family is mostly interested in making sure that this never happens to anyone else, so we're making a lot of inquiries about arrestor beds and other procedures and equipment that might make the airport safer. Call me in a couple of days and I'll update you on what we've been able to find out.") That kind of approach creates a Chinese water torture for the opponent while he's looking to settle the case. Instead, they're "murderers", which means that they did it intentionally, which is crap. He's blown his wad, made his clients look greedy and unsympathetic, and there's really nowhere to go from here. However, the current "arrestor bed" nonsense needs to be shot down by a concerted background effort from the city, the airlines, and the FAA.

Hey, when do we hear from Mary Schiavo?

[Edited 2005-12-16 11:20:16]
 
Tornado82
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 11:07 pm

Quoting TheGreatChecko (Reply 46):
I really can't tell how far I've floated (the markings are obscured by snow and darkness, all I have is lights)
Once I'm on the ground, I have to stop this plane no matter what (can't really go around at this point).

Did they have to stop at that point? He was probably still at 100kt+ when the T/R's "stuck," assuming there was some kind of error, because he's obviously grabbing them the second he's down. If he immediately "firewalls" it (yeah I know, it's a jet) do those engines spool up in time to lift back up if the brakes are released immediately?

Next question... what are the regs. for landing on runways where the markers are covered?

If this landing is taking place on say a 7500' runway... its no big deal. The whole issue is they (everyone from the flight deck to the MDW tower) were adding too many variables on this flight. Snow covered runway, bad vis, bad cigs, tailwind, and very short (for 737s) runway. Take out any one of those variables and its fine. There may be mins written for low vis, and runway length mins written for snow covered and tailwinds, but this was a very unique situation. Think about it as a "Midway factor."

Sure they can say braking action fair to good when you're on approach, but with a heavy enough snow mixed with some wind, stuff like that can change in 30 seconds. I have a 1.8 mile commmute to work, barely longer than the MDW runways, last night in what is normally an 8 minute drive took 20... because the precip was so heavy that literally in the time I waited for a traffic light we went from slushy roads to entirely ice covered. The spacing for planes on approach is at least the time of a traffic light. "Braking action" is impossible to be an exact science, it's just a snapshot in time from when that sled and/or prior plane hit that area. This was a lake enhanced convective snowband, nobody can forecast the intensity of those from minute to minute. An intelligble change of 1 or 2 degrees in wind direction could drop your visibility by a mile or change your accumulation rates by an inch or two an hour.
 
Chief727
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RE: 12/15/2005 Ntsb Update On SWA At MDW

Fri Dec 16, 2005 11:55 pm

Just some thoughts and questions:

How HEAVY was this aircraft? What was the load of the accident 737? I'll bet that the "load" of this particular airplane - and all the other 'conditions' - justified the attempt at landing.

For whatever reason ,the crew did not go around. Snow, limited visability, night, - maybe tired - and a "whole hand full of 737" that's not slowing as it should, the work load must have been real intense - to say the least. Imagine yourself in that situation.

At some point after touchdown on this runway - a mere few seconds - a "go around" was not possible.

Once on the runway, How long does it take (time and distance) to get a 737 - in this situation - back in the air SAFELY?

From what I'm reading, no one has mentioned the wing spoilers. Were they deployed? Was the crew too occupied with the thrust reversers? Spoilers should have deployed automatically and since the testimony says the autobrakes - set on Max - apparently did activate, there is some reason the plane did not stop. The point I wish to make here is: THIS PLANE SHOULD HAVE STOPPED - EVEN without reverse thrust.

Until all the facts are known - and now, MANY are not known yet - lets not imply the crew did something wrong.

"Don't knock it 'till you've tried it !!"

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