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zanl188
Topic Author
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AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Wed Aug 19, 2015 10:33 pm

NTSB opens investigation into tail strike incident at CLT. Sounds fairly serious to me if there was in fact approach light and runway impacts followed by a go around.


August 19, 2015
WASHINGTON – The National Transportation Safety Board has opened an investigation into Saturday’s accident that occurred when a passenger jetliner suffered substantial damage following a tail strike during an attempted landing.

On August 15, 2015, at about 6:34 pm eastern daylight time, an Airbus A321, operated by American Airlines as Flight 1851 inbound from Atlanta, reportedly encountered wind shear on final approach to the Charlotte Douglas International Airport. The airplane impacted runway approach lights followed by an airplane tail to runway impact. The flight crew then performed a go-around maneuver and completed the landing. No injuries were reported; however, the airplane was substantially damaged.

The flight data recorder and cockpit voice recorder have been brought to the NTSB laboratory in Washington where they are being downloaded and analyzed.

The investigation will include an examination of weather conditions at the time of the event, airplane performance, and operational factors.

Investigative updates will be issued as circumstance warrant.



Avherald link:
http://avherald.com/h?article=48b083cd&opt=0

[Edited 2015-08-19 15:41:25]
Legal considerations provided by: Dewey, Cheatum, and Howe
 
cbphoto
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Wed Aug 19, 2015 11:58 pm

Quoting zanl188 (Thread starter):
NTSB opens investigation into tail strike incident at CLT. Sounds fairly serious to me if there was in fact approach light and runway impacts followed by a go around.

It may be serious, however, windshear on short final can have horrible consequences on any plane. It will be interesting to see if previous aarrivals had reported windshear and to what degree the windshear was? Either way, glad it turned out ok and were able to make it back on ground safely!
ETOPS: Engines Turning or Passengers Swimming
 
catiii
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Thu Aug 20, 2015 1:27 am

Quoting cbphoto (Reply 1):
It may be serious, however, windshear on short final can have horrible consequences on any plane. It will be interesting to see if previous aarrivals had reported windshear and to what degree the windshear was? Either way, glad it turned out ok and were able to make it back on ground safely!

Per the link provided by the OP: airport radioed windshear advisories for both runways 36, gain of about 15 knots at 200 feet confirmed by pilot reports. A few minutes later the airport reported a windshear advisory of 20 knots loss at 300 feet, pilot reports of 15 knots gain at 200 feet.
 
mcoatc
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Thu Aug 20, 2015 1:34 am

Quoting cbphoto (Reply 1):
It may be serious, however, windshear on short final can have horrible consequences on any plane. It will be interesting to see if previous aarrivals had reported windshear and to what degree the windshear was? Either way, glad it turned out ok and were able to make it back on ground safely!


It may be serious? It's normally good policy to leave the approach lights in the same condition you've found them. FAA tech/ops tends to appreciate that.

All of your questions can be answered in the avherald link provided by the OP.

It sounds to me like everyone on that airplane is extremely lucky to be safe. The margin of error at that altitude is quite small, and with speed fluctuations it's thinner. The crew was given the required LLWAS warnings and PIREPs. I wonder what the onboard equipment was indicating.

Where is maxpower1954 when you need him?
 
washingtonflyer
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Thu Aug 20, 2015 2:25 am

D'ah. Pretty new 321 - less than 3 years old.
 
cabochris
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Thu Aug 20, 2015 3:52 am

Sounds to me everything worked out.. very rare tail strike on flare, due to sudden airspeed loss from a sudden wind event, plane aborted landing, and established another approach and landed. Not a good day, but everyone is alive to live another.
 
afcjets
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Thu Aug 20, 2015 4:04 am

Why would they land or be permitted to land if wind shear was detected? I thought accidents like this were a thing of the past.
 
LovesCoffee
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Thu Aug 20, 2015 3:33 pm

Airplane at Charlotte in June 2013.


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phlwok
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Thu Aug 20, 2015 5:31 pm

I saw what I believe was a ground stop at CLT that evening reported by the FAA OIS site as "severe wind shear". I assume it was tied this incident now.
 
dfwcre8tive
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Thu Aug 20, 2015 7:33 pm

 
N1120A
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Thu Aug 20, 2015 7:40 pm

Quoting afcjets (Reply 6):
Why would they land or be permitted to land if wind shear was detected? I thought accidents like this were a thing of the past.

I think the amount was within limits. Sounds like it got worse.
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afcjets
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Thu Aug 20, 2015 7:52 pm

Quoting N1120A (Reply 10):

I think the amount was within limits. Sounds like it got worse

They need to revise the limits then or make updates instantaneous. Thank god no one was hurt, this could have been a horrible accident. I hope changes are made based on what happened here.
 
A388
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Thu Aug 20, 2015 7:56 pm

Reading the thread title I thought it was a tail strike of one of the new AA A321's with the sharklets but it is a US A321 still wearing the US colors. Like everybody else says, fortunately everybody arrived safe afterwards and I hope we will get to know what happened here soon.


A388
 
b747400erf
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Fri Aug 21, 2015 11:06 am

Quoting afcjets (Reply 11):

They need to revise the limits then or make updates instantaneous. Thank god no one was hurt, this could have been a horrible accident. I hope changes are made based on what happened here.

Wind shear is difficult to detect, how long do you propose an airport closes after a report?
 
RobertS975
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Fri Aug 21, 2015 12:00 pm

Narrowly missed a potentially horrific crash... this "scrape" could have easily been a fireball crash into the approach lights. This wasn't just a tail strike on the runway... approach lights were struck.
 
cbphoto
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Fri Aug 21, 2015 12:54 pm

Quoting mcoatc (Reply 3):
It may be serious? It's normally good policy to leave the approach lights in the same condition you've found them. FAA tech/ops tends to appreciate that.

All of your questions can be answered in the avherald link provided by the OP.

It sounds to me like everyone on that airplane is extremely lucky to be safe. The margin of error at that altitude is quite small, and with speed fluctuations it's thinner. The crew was given the required LLWAS warnings and PIREPs. I wonder what the onboard equipment was indicating.

Where is maxpower1954 when you need him?

Well..serious would be like Delta 191. Obviously no pilot ever plans on taking the tops off the approach lights, but Acts of God happen from time to time. The numbers provided in the article (which I admittedly hadn't read before my first post) are actually within my companies limits for windshear, so I would imagine they are within limits for US Airways as well. Freak events can happen at anytime and the crew did everything they could I'm sure to save the plane.
ETOPS: Engines Turning or Passengers Swimming
 
mcoatc
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Fri Aug 21, 2015 2:51 pm

Quoting cbphoto (Reply 15):
Well..serious would be like Delta 191. Obviously no pilot ever plans on taking the tops off the approach lights, but Acts of God happen from time to time. The numbers provided in the article (which I admittedly hadn't read before my first post) are actually within my companies limits for windshear, so I would imagine they are within limits for US Airways as well. Freak events can happen at anytime and the crew did everything they could I'm sure to save the plane.

I'll respectfully disagree that an airplane needs to disintegrate and 100+ people die for an event to be considered serious. I'll stick with my feelings that this was serious, and was close to being disastrous.

The gain/loss numbers provided are not terribly extreme. I work in windshear/microburst territory for 6 months of the year, so while I don't know everyone's performance limitations, I've got a pretty good idea of what most folks can land in and what they can't. I'll assume the crew landed within limitations, as they'll have a lot of explaining to do if they didn't.

I'm not vilifying the crew - they obviously did a good job nursing a sick plane safely onto the ground. It's perfectly plausible that there was the "perfect storm" of shear that came about unexpectedly. Having said that:

Quoting RobertS975 (Reply 14):
Narrowly missed a potentially horrific crash... this "scrape" could have easily been a fireball crash into the approach lights. This wasn't just a tail strike on the runway... approach lights were struck.

  
 
bravogolf
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Fri Aug 21, 2015 3:07 pm

So apperently, the frangable supports for the approach lights worked as they should. The supports are designed to break away, to lessen the damage to the aircraft
 
zanl188
Topic Author
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Fri Aug 21, 2015 3:21 pm

Would this incident be considered controlled flight into terrain?
Legal considerations provided by: Dewey, Cheatum, and Howe
 
RobertS975
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Fri Aug 21, 2015 5:13 pm

Absolutely not CFIT... that applies to what is an intended track and altitude that is flown in error ending up in a crash. Think AA 757 into mountain in Cali.

Accidents like Asiana B777 SFO and this near accident are NOT examples of CFIT. These involved a LOSS of control.
 
ckfred
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Fri Aug 21, 2015 9:27 pm

Besides the questions of how and why this happened, the other obvious question is how much damage was done to the plane? If looks to me that they will be replacing portions of the skin, as well as checking everything under the skin for damage, both in the area where the plane struck the lights, and other portions of fuselage.
 
afcjets
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Fri Aug 21, 2015 9:45 pm

Quoting B747400ERF (Reply 13):
Quoting afcjects: They need to revise the limits then or make updates instantaneous. Thank god no one was hurt, this could have been a horrible accident. I hope changes are made based on what happened here.
Wind shear is difficult to detect, how long do you propose an airport closes after a report?

Where did I propose that?

Quoting RobertS975 (Reply 14):
Narrowly missed a potentially horrific crash... this "scrape" could have easily been a fireball crash into the approach lights. This wasn't just a tail strike on the runway... approach lights were struck.
Quoting mcoatc (Reply 16):
I'll respectfully disagree that an airplane needs to disintegrate and 100+ people die for an event to be considered serious. I'll stick with my feelings that this was serious, and was close to being disastrous.

  

Watch the animated video.

https://youtu.be/7X7J8ofM3Sw?t=15s


Quoting zanl188 (Reply 18):
Would this incident


This was classified as an accident, not incident.
 
b747400erf
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Fri Aug 21, 2015 9:49 pm

Quoting afcjets (Reply 21):
Where did I propose that?

Here:

Why would they land or be permitted to land if wind shear was detected? I thought accidents like this were a thing of the past.
 
D L X
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Fri Aug 21, 2015 10:11 pm

Quoting afcjets (Reply 21):

Watch the animated video.

https://youtu.be/7X7J8ofM3Sw?t=15s

Ugh. You just tricked me into watching a CNN animation of an air incident/accident, with passenger(s) saying how they thought they surely were going to die.

Right before they taxied to the gate a few minutes later.
 
afcjets
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Fri Aug 21, 2015 10:49 pm

Quoting B747400ERF (Reply 22):
Where did I propose that?
Here:

Why would they land or be permitted to land if wind shear was detected? I thought accidents like this were a thing of the past.

Tstorms blow over in a matter or minutes, I guess I don't consider an airport closed when a plane must circle the airfield once or twice. When I think of closed I think of a winter storm where it closed for hours or days.
 
afcjets
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Fri Aug 21, 2015 11:01 pm

Quoting D L X (Reply 23):
Ugh. You just tricked me into watching a CNN animation of an air incident/accident

Sorry, I found it online, I don't watch CNN. I didn't realize they did their own animations, I thought it came from actual flight data.
 
reltney
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RE: AA A321 Tailstrike @ CLT

Sun Aug 23, 2015 6:21 am

Quoting afcjets (Reply 24):

Afcjets and b747400erf.

Windshear can happen any day at any time. Look up the definition. It is a change in wind speed or direction in a short distance. Clear skies or stormy skies, windshear can happen. No big deal as yOu learn to deal with it with many options in your bag of tricks. Many non pilots get in confused with microburst, which can produce windshear. No need to close an airport for windshear. Happens everyday to every airport. I don't know the CLT weather at the time of the incident if a storm was in the area.


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