Posts: 259
Joined: Sun Oct 29, 2000 4:55 pm

Runway Debris

Thu Nov 02, 2000 9:20 am

It is too early to speculate, but from the press releases I am reading, it seems the Singapore Airlines 747-400 may have collided with the wheel of another plane or some heavy excavation equipment. Just 2 months ago, fallen debris resulted in the loss of the Concorde.

I was watching this show called Airport on BBC America, and on one episode they showed ground check vehicles that work in between planes landing and taking off, to scan the runway for fallen debris and to clear it. I didn't realize the importance of their actions until now.

I think planes are very safe, it is the fact that there are so many operating, that ground density makes for compromised safety.

I want to ask everybody questions such as the following...
Who should be repsonsibe for such debris, the airline whose plane dropped it? or the airport? or is nobody to blame?
If anybody who reads this actually does manage runway maintainance, can you please give us some insight into your work?

Thanks Everybody
Red Panda
Posts: 1433
Joined: Wed Jun 14, 2000 12:58 pm

RE: Runway Debris

Thu Nov 02, 2000 9:31 am

Another report saying that SQ006 was hit by two construction vehicles at the end of the rwy 05R. There is also rumour saying that the SIA pilots used the wrong rwy that was under construction at the time when SQ 6 took off. SQ 6 was supposed to use 05L (the active rwy) instead of 05R which was under constrction.
Posts: 1281
Joined: Mon Oct 23, 2000 1:44 am

RE: Runway Debris

Thu Nov 02, 2000 9:31 am

I'd say most of the blame should go to the airport. Airlines should only be accountable if they have gone against regulation and as a result one of their planes drops pieces on a runway. But the airports should still have a system for checking runways between every flight. airport might say this is too expensive, but all is relative. In the US, in wrongful death charges etc., courts have usually determined the life of a human being (as calculated by lost income, ardship for families etc. etc.) is about US$10 million. Personally I believe a life is priceless, but $10 million is often the standard. So multiply this by, say 300 passengers on a widebody. thats US$3 billion. I highly doubt that installing and running scanner systems at an airport would come anywhere close to this number! especially now that runway debris downed a Concorde and apparently an SIA 744, otherwise very reliable planes.
Posts: 259
Joined: Sun Oct 29, 2000 4:55 pm

RE: Runway Debris

Thu Nov 02, 2000 2:08 pm

SIA is arguably the safest world airline
B747-400 is one of the safest widebodies
Concorde has the best safety record of any airplane
but they all fell victims to the unforseen - the runway that they must operate on.

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