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RayChuang
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777-300ER Towed To Gate To Save Fuel?

Wed Dec 16, 2009 12:30 am

This past Sunday, I noticed something unusual at SFO: instead of a plane taxiing by itself all the way to the gate, they stopped the plane just before entering the gate area, and had a tug pull the plane into the gate itself. This happened to the flight my stepfather returning from Hong Kong arrived on, Singapore Airlines Flight SQ002; they stopped the 777-300ER first, then had a tug pull the plane into Gate G91 on Concourse G at the International Terminal.

Does anyone know why this is was done? Was it done as a fuel-saving and pollution-reduction measure? Or was the spacing around Gate G91 so tight with a 773ER they decided to use a tug for easier placement of the plane into the gate parking spot?  Confused I've noticed that when the SQ 773ER parks at the gates further out into Concourse G they don't do this practice, and the 773ER taxis by itself all the way to the gate.
 
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Stitch
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RE: 777-300ER Towed To Gate To Save Fuel?

Wed Dec 16, 2009 12:34 am

I'm guessing they did it for gate spacing issues.
 
vikkyvik
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RE: 777-300ER Towed To Gate To Save Fuel?

Wed Dec 16, 2009 1:01 am



Quoting RayChuang (Thread starter):
Does anyone know why this is was done? Was it done as a fuel-saving and pollution-reduction measure? Or was the spacing around Gate G91 so tight with a 773ER they decided to use a tug for easier placement of the plane into the gate parking spot?

It happens in places where the gate spacing is tight enough that they'd rather tow it in than have the pilots "drive" it in.

Example: TBIT at LAX. I believe all the gates are tow-in (except perhaps the outer 1 or 2). Some gates at American's terminal (4) are tow-in as well.
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mmedford
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RE: 777-300ER Towed To Gate To Save Fuel?

Wed Dec 16, 2009 3:53 am



Quoting Stitch (Reply 1):
I'm guessing they did it for gate spacing issues.

Exactly why, it's could be a tight fit...alot cheaper to have the aircraft towed in...
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thebatman
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RE: 777-300ER Towed To Gate To Save Fuel?

Wed Dec 16, 2009 7:49 am

They do the same thing with Iberia's A340-600 when it departs from K19 at ORD. That airplane is so long that the fit at the gate is really tight. So, rather than take chances, they stop it short and tow it the rest of the way in.
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n901wa
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RE: 777-300ER Towed To Gate To Save Fuel?

Thu Dec 17, 2009 1:41 am

I wonder if it could be because of the Jet Blast. I think 1 side of G faces UAL gates, and the 777-300 has a Big jet blast pattern. I know at sat 5 and 6 a lot of gates are tow in gates because of Jet Blast. I been Blasted by a few AA MD-80's going into Sat 4 here and its no fun.
 
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RayChuang
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RE: 777-300ER Towed To Gate To Save Fuel?

Thu Dec 17, 2009 4:35 am

I think given how tight the spacing for Gate G91 is at SFO, they used a tug because it allows for precise placement of the plane at the gate itself.

I actually found the gate selection unusual, since when SQ was flying 747-400's to SFO they usually parked the plane further out in Concourse G.
 
speedbird0125
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RE: 777-300ER Towed To Gate To Save Fuel?

Thu Dec 17, 2009 6:07 am

It always happes at TBIT at LAX.
I think it's because of narrow space around the gates.
 
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HAWK21M
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RE: 777-300ER Towed To Gate To Save Fuel?

Thu Dec 17, 2009 9:57 am

Clearence issues....better to tow than taxi with engines running.
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