Mon Feb 22, 1999 10:57 am

The paragaph below says that the max ETOPS allowed is 3 hours how are twins allowed to cross the atlantic is there some kind of exception?

ETOPS is an acronym for Extended-Range Twin-Engine Operations. Without an ETOPS rating, an aircraft with only two engines must be able to get to an airport where it can safely land within 60 minutes if an engine fails in-flight. ETOPS extends this "rule time" to 90 minutes or more, up to a maximum of 180 minutes. Obtaining an ETOPS rating requires certification of the reliability of an airframe/engine combination as well as an airline's flight operations and maintenance. Usually extra equipment is required as well, such as additional backup systems for electrical power. ETOPS does not require over-water equipment (e.g., life rafts) or additional fuel tanks, though these are usually required for the typical missions of ETOPS-rated aircraft.
Some pilots claim ETOPS really means "Engines Turn Or Passengers Swim

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Mon Feb 22, 1999 11:00 am

No. They have to stay with 3 hours of a open airport that they can land at. That is why the northern routes are so popular. There a landing fields in Novia Scotia, Northwest Territories(or whatever they call it now), Greenland, Iceland and Ireland
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Mon Feb 22, 1999 11:03 am

I am not afraid of techonology or fly-by-wire but I don't think they should be operating twins over the pacfic like Boeing is trying to push. What do you all think?
"History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or timid." D. Eisenhower
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Mon Feb 22, 1999 12:09 pm

Ever since they started operating the 757, 767, and A300 and A310 over the Atlantic more than 15 years ago, there's never been a crash on the ocean due to a twin losing both of its engines. Twin engined planes now cross the Atlantic more than any other type of aircraft. In the early days, an ocean on two engines would have been unthinkable, but nowadays the engines are really that reliable. I wouldn't hesitate to fly the Pacific in a 777.

It's easy to say "what if" both engines fail and teh plane goes down, but until now that's never happened and the chances of it ever happening go down every day.

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Mon Feb 22, 1999 1:14 pm

Just because it's never happened doesn't mean it won't. I hope I never have to cross the Pacific in a twin. I crossed the Atlantic in a Delta 767 only because my Singapore 747 flight was discontinued and they couldn't get me on anything else. It wasn't my choice. This summer I'll be flying across the Atlantic on a Continental DC-10. I'm hoping and praying that they don't dump their DC-10s for 777s by then. If they do, I guess I'll have no choice but to fly them, what with nonrefundable tickets and all.

Bob Bradley
Richmond, VA
Fly Eastern's Golden Falcon DC-7B
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Mon Feb 22, 1999 1:38 pm

Personally, there is a comfort of knowing you have more than two engines, however, I felt so much more comfortable flying aboard the 777 from SFO-LHR, than a DC-10 from DEN-SFO.


Mon Feb 22, 1999 6:09 pm

Yes they are allowed to cross the ocean. Plenty of airlines do it with the 767, 777, A300, and even the 757. There are more places to land on a US-UK route then one might think within a 3 hour span.
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Tue Feb 23, 1999 2:06 am

Just to let you know. The statement about twins crossing the Atlantic more than anything else is only partially correct. Flights starting in America have more twins but flights orginating from Europe still operate more quads.

*** Most U.S. airlines operate the 767/777 across the Atlantic while U.K and European airlines fly 747/777s, MD-11s and A340-300s.
"History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or timid." D. Eisenhower
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Tue Feb 23, 1999 3:44 am

NYC Int'l is right anb explained it well what ETOPS is all about. The other acronym for ETOPS is Extended range Twin engine Overwater Passenger Service. All aircrafts crossing the Atlantic must obtain an ETOPS rating of at least 138 minutes, 120 minutes is not enough because at some point while crossing the ocean you can end up being more than two hours away from the nearest airport in the event of an engine failure. So now they all obtain 180 minutes certification.
See you later folks.
Ben Soriano
Brussels Belgium


Wed Feb 24, 1999 1:13 pm

We use the full 180mins on LAX / PPT route.
Only suitable enrte fields are HNL or ITO (hilo).
Also etops rules seem to be very flexible from state to state.

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