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Antaras
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Lightning strike killed a ground staff in HAN

Tue Sep 22, 2020 4:20 pm

On social media, I heard a piece of sad news from HAN.
Just a few hours ago, there was a very big thunderstorm in Hanoi, threaten the safety of operation in HAN. And something unfortunate happened.

As the flight crew was preparing for the push-back (aircraft door was closed) of flight VN7715 (HAN-VII), the pilot report that there was a lightning-strike in the right-wing of the airframe. The ATC spotted the incident and immediately contact the crew to make sure everything is fine. The crew confirmed that everything was fine, however they lost the contact of a mechanic staff who was believed standing below (?) the right-wing of the aircraft. By that, the staff was found seriously injured by the strike, and unfortunately, he passed away just 1 hour ago at the moment I was writing this post.

Image
(c) Vietnam Air Forum

Early investigation shows that the lightning stroke the winglet of Vietnam Airlines A321-272neo reg VN-A503, and as the staff is standing so close to the right-wing, he couldn't avoid the disaster. Things were worsened as he was wearing a metallic headset on his head.
Image

Early report:
NGT HAN B/C: A503/HAN/VN7715 HAN-VII ETD-18:10: after closing the aircraft door; the flight crew reported a lightning-strike in the right-wing; CRS B is checking out. (Technical staff N.T.B commanding the engine was affected by lightning and went to the emergency room at Hanoi Heart Institute)


Rest in peace.

P/s: as it is midnight in Vietnam, I found no formal report from the newspaper yet. I Will update as soon as possible.
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TWA772LR
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Re: Lightning strike killed a ground staff in HAN

Tue Sep 22, 2020 5:20 pm

RIP to the victim, it's a very unfortunate accident.

In the US, there are lightening censors that make different noises for different distances of lightening strikes. I believe strikes within 8 miles require rampers to remove their headsets, within 5 and the ramp is closed. I hope systems like that get adopted in more places of the world.
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Nomadd
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Re: Lightning strike killed a ground staff in HAN

Tue Sep 22, 2020 8:17 pm

What kind of headset? Plugged into a handheld radio on his belt? Hopefully not one plugged into the plane.
 
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Antaras
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Re: Lightning strike killed a ground staff in HAN

Tue Sep 22, 2020 8:25 pm

Nomadd wrote:
What kind of headset? Plugged into a handheld radio on his belt? Hopefully not one plugged into the plane.

I don't know. The staff was talking to the captain by that headset at the moment he was stroke.
Nomadd wrote:
Hopefully not one plugged into the plane.

Don't think so.
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dopplerd
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Re: Lightning strike killed a ground staff in HAN

Wed Sep 23, 2020 4:11 am

If the ramp person was speaking to the cockpit it was almost certainly via a wired connection to the airplane. I've never come across rampers using a radio to communicate with the cockpit.
 
eamondzhang
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Re: Lightning strike killed a ground staff in HAN

Wed Sep 23, 2020 5:01 am

While it's sad, it's a tragedy that could have been avoided. If there's lightning in the vincinty of the airport all ramp activities should have ceased.

Allowing any ramp activities to continue despite the danger of lightning around is not a responsible practice.

Michael
 
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Antaras
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Re: Lightning strike killed a ground staff in HAN

Wed Sep 23, 2020 6:00 am

eamondzhang wrote:
While it's sad, it's a tragedy that could have been avoided. If there's lightning in the vincinty of the airport all ramp activities should have ceased.

Allowing any ramp activities to continue despite the danger of lightning around is not a responsible practice.

Michael

Base on the local newspaper and the interviews with HAN's managers, I assumed that everyone was over-confident on the airport's "modern" anti-lightning system and underrated the danger of ramping in bad weather, especially when there was a storm in HAN.

English report: https://e.vnexpress.net/news/news/light ... 66001.html
An airplane maintenance worker was fatally struck by lightning Tuesday while working at Hanoi's Noi Bai airport.
The 40-year-old man worked for the Vietnam Airlines Engineering Company (VAECO), a subsidiary of Vietnam Airlines.

He was checking a VN plane that was preparing to leave HAN for VII when a bolt of lightning struck the right-wing of the airframe and knocked him out.

He died on the way to the hospital.


Other Vietnamese reports show that everyone has relied too much on the anti-lightning system of the airport.
https://zingnews.vn/nhan-vien-san-bay-n ... 34146.html
Representatives of HAN said the airport has a lightning protection system according to international standards. This person assessed that the incident of lightning hitting a parked plane was very rare, it could be considered the first time that happened in Noi Bai.
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FGITD
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Re: Lightning strike killed a ground staff in HAN

Wed Sep 23, 2020 6:17 am

dopplerd wrote:
If the ramp person was speaking to the cockpit it was almost certainly via a wired connection to the airplane. I've never come across rampers using a radio to communicate with the cockpit.


Wireless/Bluetooth headsets are becoming fairly popular. Plug the receiver in at the nose, and reception is good enough that you can walk pretty much around the entire aircraft and stay in communication with the cockpit. Great for getting fuel info without having to walk back and forth
 
32andBelow
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Re: Lightning strike killed a ground staff in HAN

Wed Sep 23, 2020 6:32 am

FGITD wrote:
dopplerd wrote:
If the ramp person was speaking to the cockpit it was almost certainly via a wired connection to the airplane. I've never come across rampers using a radio to communicate with the cockpit.


Wireless/Bluetooth headsets are becoming fairly popular. Plug the receiver in at the nose, and reception is good enough that you can walk pretty much around the entire aircraft and stay in communication with the cockpit. Great for getting fuel info without having to walk back and forth

Seems easy to send your dongle 3000 miles away
 
737MAX7
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Re: Lightning strike killed a ground staff in HAN

Wed Sep 23, 2020 2:45 pm

32andBelow wrote:
FGITD wrote:
dopplerd wrote:
If the ramp person was speaking to the cockpit it was almost certainly via a wired connection to the airplane. I've never come across rampers using a radio to communicate with the cockpit.


Wireless/Bluetooth headsets are becoming fairly popular. Plug the receiver in at the nose, and reception is good enough that you can walk pretty much around the entire aircraft and stay in communication with the cockpit. Great for getting fuel info without having to walk back and forth

Seems easy to send your dongle 3000 miles away

At WN we are required to show the Captain the base unit that gets plugged into the plane as well as the steering bypass pin after we disconnect the tow bar from the nose gear. I’m assuming most other airlines using these wireless head sets are the same way.
 
RDUDDJI
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Re: Lightning strike killed a ground staff in HAN

Wed Sep 23, 2020 2:53 pm

dopplerd wrote:
If the ramp person was speaking to the cockpit it was almost certainly via a wired connection to the airplane. I've never come across rampers using a radio to communicate with the cockpit.


I've done that in the early 2000s. We had a VHF handheld that was set to the same freq as our Ops. Didn't use it often, but we did use it at night for coordinating all the RON movement (brake rides, etc.). We were a small station, so with the VHF we could talk to both aircraft on the ground and those in range. We had like 7 RONs and 2 gates, so there was a lot of towing and coordination needed.
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Nomadd
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Re: Lightning strike killed a ground staff in HAN

Wed Sep 23, 2020 7:40 pm

I'd want some pretty good ground requirements before I used a wired headset on any vehicle. I really don't want to be hooked up to 200 tons of metal with one spring loaded ground clamp on a dirty surface. My brain makes a lousy ground path. A gap of a few millimeters between the circuit and my head doesn't really do the job.
I made myself very annoying to management regarding people wearing wired headsets while walking around poorly grounded comms trailers in my last job. I have to use both hands to count the people I've known who were lost because they didn't take electricity seriously enough.
 
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Antaras
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Re: Lightning strike killed a ground staff in HAN

Thu Sep 24, 2020 4:44 am

737MAX7 wrote:
32andBelow wrote:
FGITD wrote:

Wireless/Bluetooth headsets are becoming fairly popular. Plug the receiver in at the nose, and reception is good enough that you can walk pretty much around the entire aircraft and stay in communication with the cockpit. Great for getting fuel info without having to walk back and forth

Seems easy to send your dongle 3000 miles away

At WN we are required to show the Captain the base unit that gets plugged into the plane as well as the steering bypass pin after we disconnect the tow bar from the nose gear. I’m assuming most other airlines using these wireless head sets are the same way.

RDUDDJI wrote:
dopplerd wrote:
If the ramp person was speaking to the cockpit it was almost certainly via a wired connection to the airplane. I've never come across rampers using a radio to communicate with the cockpit.


I've done that in the early 2000s. We had a VHF handheld that was set to the same freq as our Ops. Didn't use it often, but we did use it at night for coordinating all the RON movement (brake rides, etc.). We were a small station, so with the VHF we could talk to both aircraft on the ground and those in range. We had like 7 RONs and 2 gates, so there was a lot of towing and coordination needed.

Nomadd wrote:
I'd want some pretty good ground requirements before I used a wired headset on any vehicle. I really don't want to be hooked up to 200 tons of metal with one spring loaded ground clamp on a dirty surface. My brain makes a lousy ground path. A gap of a few millimeters between the circuit and my head doesn't really do the job.
I made myself very annoying to management regarding people wearing wired headsets while walking around poorly grounded comms trailers in my last job. I have to use both hands to count the people I've known who were lost because they didn't take electricity seriously enough.


Until now, I can confirm that the technician was wearing a metallic headset with wired connection to the A321neo airframe.

However, most likely that the staff would not survive either without the connected-headset as he was standing so close to the strike-point (just a few meters from the strike-point, while removing the aircraft's wheel chocks).

===========================================

VAECO (VN's subsidiary) is considering upgrade on the headset to wireless type, as well as suggesting some protocols to the authorites to prevent any further accident in the future.
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