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Posts: 34
Joined: Thu Oct 26, 2000 2:43 pm

Shifting Cargo

Tue Jan 16, 2001 9:28 am

I would like to know what the procedures are for cargo which shifts position on departure, and arrival on turbo prop aircraft. I recently heard a report of some cargo shifting on a DHC-8 and the Captain continued to fly the aircraft to destination. Reports were that the aircraft nose was in the upward position for most of travel.

RE: Shifting Cargo

Tue Jan 16, 2001 7:58 pm

Shifting cargo ? Well, that's a killer !

I don't think that any manufacturer has ever published a procedure for that kind of problem. If it happens, the only way the cargo can go is rearward, then your plane would be pitching up and if you're lucky you might regain control with the elevators (and trim). And if you manage to put your plane in a nose-down attitude your cargo might shift back to where it was, who knows ?

That guy in the DHC-8 is a lucky bastard !  
I guess he used mostly the engines to change is vertical velocity and bring back the plane. BTW I heard that, in the wake of the UAL DC10 crash in Sioux City, NASA developped a software to be coupled to the auto-throttles in case of total hydraulic failure.

Do you remember what happened to a Fine Air DC8 that took off and crashed in MIA a few years ago ? You can find a report here (if you like):
Posts: 1087
Joined: Tue Jan 16, 2001 5:57 pm

RE: Shifting Cargo

Tue Jan 16, 2001 8:02 pm

I have been out to pick up what was left of a Skyvan that had a shifting cargo problem. Fuel drums tied down with one strap on their sides broke loose on takeoff and rolled to the back of the plane. The CG shifted so far aft that it turned the plane into a helicopter and was completely uncontrollable. So, the answer is.. it depends. On what breaks loose and whether it shifts far enough to move the aircraft our of CG range. Best answer: Secure your cargo!

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