x1234
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ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Wed Jan 02, 2019 7:25 pm

I just found out LATAM/QANTAS and Air New Zealand fly between South America and Australia/New Zealand crossing the South Pacific ocean. I read the Wikipedia article on Transpolar flights and apparently due to lack of diversion airports ETOPS aircraft (77E for AirNZ, 789 for LATAM, Qantas still uses the 4 engine B744) require 330 minutes. What if there's an engine failure!? How safe is this?

The east-bound route is pretty north for AKL-SCL: https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flig ... 0#1f0d0ee9
The west-bound route is still pretty north for SCL-AKL: https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flig ... 1#1f0cf1f7

For MEL-SCL the route GOES VERY SOUTH towards Antarctica: https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flig ... 4#1f0b2d35
For SCL-MEL the route VERY VERY SOUTH towards Antartica: https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flig ... 5#1f09c68a

For AKL-EZE the route is pretty north: https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flig ... 0#1f0d3d23
But the return EZE-AKL goes VERY SOUTH towards Antartica: https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flig ... 1#1f0ac0aa

And for the 4-engine QANTAS B744 with no ETOPS restrictions on SYD-SCL is still pretty north: https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flig ... 7#1f0cca24
And with this pattern westbound south pacific flights go pretty south for SCL-SYD: https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flig ... 8#1f05aaa6

How are the winds in the South Pacific versus Pole!? Any route planners for QANTAS, AirNZ and LATAM want to give insight!?
 
BravoOne
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Thu Jan 03, 2019 12:48 pm

May not be the answer you are looking for but a lot if not all of these two engine flights, would require a 240+ minute ETOPS operations, FAR 121.687 & .689 approval. The 747 (pax only) requires ETOPS approval beyond 180 minutes so it has the same exposure as the twins on some of those routings as well. One again the limiting factor is fire suppression in the cargo holds. 345' minus 15' (330') is the approved formula.

Typically there are strong easterly jet streams in the southern polar regions thus driving the optimum routings even farther south
 
GalaxyFlyer
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Thu Jan 03, 2019 2:50 pm

While fire suppression is one relevant standard, for a lot of people, pax especially, potentially flying for 5 hours on one engine is a bit difficult to accept.

GF
 
thepinkmachine
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Thu Jan 03, 2019 3:11 pm

GalaxyFlyer wrote:
While fire suppression is one relevant standard, for a lot of people, pax especially, potentially flying for 5 hours on one engine is a bit difficult to accept.

GF


Then again- I’d rather be flying on one engine for 5 hours then with a fire in my cargo hold.

The funny thing is, that the smoke detectors can’t tell smoke from the extinguishing agent - so once you get a cargo fire warning you won’t know if it is suppressed until you’ve landed and someone opens the cargo door...
 
BravoOne
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Thu Jan 03, 2019 3:30 pm

Their are multiple advisory notes regarding the opening of the cargo doors after a landing due to a possible fire. Make sure you have the trucks standing by and ready for action.
 
thepinkmachine
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Thu Jan 03, 2019 4:10 pm

BravoOne wrote:
Their are multiple advisory notes regarding the opening of the cargo doors after a landing due to a possible fire. Make sure you have the trucks standing by and ready for action.



Yup. This, plus you also want to have the passengers off the plane before you open the door. Still, you can’t tell if the fire is out until the ARFF physically check it.

Which leads to another eternal dispute - evacuate immediately after landing with cargo fire, or consider suppression systems doing their job properly and disembark without evac...
 
timz
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Thu Jan 03, 2019 6:44 pm

x1234 wrote:
ETOPS aircraft (77E for AirNZ, 789 for LATAM, Qantas still uses the 4 engine B744) require 330 minutes.

They don't "require" 330 minutes -- they need 330 minutes to fly the great circle. A 240-minute-legal route would be a bit longer -- half an hour longer, offhand guess.
 
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CARST
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Fri Jan 04, 2019 8:10 am

x1234 wrote:
What if there's an engine failure!? How safe is this?


Do you realise that airplanes are certified for ETOPS routes of these length?

Read more about ETOPS here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ETOPS (Yeah, it's Wikipedia, but it's a good start.)

Thus, they have fire supression systems and single engine operations standards safe enough, to reach their destination, in basically any case. A double engine failure is more or less unrealistic these days.

Also the South Pacific has way more diversion airports than you might think.

I will again refer to Wikipedia about Diversion Airports: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diversion_airport

Image
Source: http://www.gcmap.com/mapui?P=SCL-AKL%0D ... =240&E=330

As the map shows, all airliners flying such a Southern route must be ETOPS330 certified (5.5 hours from any suitable airport). The grey area over the Southern Ocean is the no-fly area for aircraft certied up to ETOPS240 only (4 hours from any suitable airport).

But while SCL-MEL might even stretch ETOPS330 on some days, the other routes are just barely off ETOPS240 limits and are never too far away from the pictured diversion airports.


And always remember, ETOPS = Engines turn, or passengers swim! That would be like a free antarctic cruise in little, very exclusive, yellow boats. Everyone would even get a free life vest and the remaining champagne from business class! Cheerio sailor!
 
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Starlionblue
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Fri Jan 04, 2019 8:45 am

x1234 wrote:
I just found out LATAM/QANTAS and Air New Zealand fly between South America and Australia/New Zealand crossing the South Pacific ocean. I read the Wikipedia article on Transpolar flights and apparently due to lack of diversion airports ETOPS aircraft (77E for AirNZ, 789 for LATAM, Qantas still uses the 4 engine B744) require 330 minutes. What if there's an engine failure!? How safe is this?


Chiming in with CARST. All things considered, an engine failure is not the biggest risk factor. Losing an engine for any reason is exceedingly rare nowadays. Losing both for unrelated reasons is astronomically unlikely. Realistically, you could run on one engine until you run out of fuel. The 180 or 240-minute numbers don't mean the engine is under undue stress after those times.

Certification for ETOPS is more likely to be restricted by fire suppression capability.

"How safe is this?" Judging by the fact that there has never been an ETOPS flight with dual unrelated engine failure since the start of ETOPS, and that thousands of ETOPS flights are conducted daily, I'll take my chances.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
kalvado
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Fri Jan 04, 2019 3:46 pm

Starlionblue wrote:
x1234 wrote:
I just found out LATAM/QANTAS and Air New Zealand fly between South America and Australia/New Zealand crossing the South Pacific ocean. I read the Wikipedia article on Transpolar flights and apparently due to lack of diversion airports ETOPS aircraft (77E for AirNZ, 789 for LATAM, Qantas still uses the 4 engine B744) require 330 minutes. What if there's an engine failure!? How safe is this?


Chiming in with CARST. All things considered, an engine failure is not the biggest risk factor. Losing an engine for any reason is exceedingly rare nowadays. Losing both for unrelated reasons is astronomically unlikely. Realistically, you could run on one engine until you run out of fuel. The 180 or 240-minute numbers don't mean the engine is under undue stress after those times.

Certification for ETOPS is more likely to be restricted by fire suppression capability.

"How safe is this?" Judging by the fact that there has never been an ETOPS flight with dual unrelated engine failure since the start of ETOPS, and that thousands of ETOPS flights are conducted daily, I'll take my chances.

What about common cause failures, are there any additional steps for such exclusive flights?
I am thinking mostly fuel contamination, and that definitely caused multiple failures on ETOPS-grade aircraft, even if not on ETOPS missions.
 
BravoOne
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Fri Jan 04, 2019 8:42 pm

Both Boeing and Airbus carefully track causes that would impact an ETOPS operation. I doubt that fuel contamination is anywhere high up on that list. Fuel icing maybe, but simple contamination here in the US, SA/LA, Europe and Asia is a pretty rare event. Can you expand on your comments?
 
kalvado
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Sat Jan 05, 2019 12:22 am

BravoOne wrote:
Both Boeing and Airbus carefully track causes that would impact an ETOPS operation. I doubt that fuel contamination is anywhere high up on that list. Fuel icing maybe, but simple contamination here in the US, SA/LA, Europe and Asia is a pretty rare event. Can you expand on your comments?

BA38, SN358. While both are relatively happy endings, these are way more common than dual engine failure should be expected.
While these flight were not ETOPS, fuel dspensed should be the same unless some special checks are in place. Having to deal with the possible oncoming dual failure thousands miles away from nearest land is an interesting scenario.
And yes, it was literally last month when FAA issued a warning about fuel contaminated and dispensed to the aircraft for 3 days at certain airport - so US is in no way immune to the issue.
 
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Starlionblue
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Sat Jan 05, 2019 2:53 am

kalvado wrote:
Starlionblue wrote:
x1234 wrote:
I just found out LATAM/QANTAS and Air New Zealand fly between South America and Australia/New Zealand crossing the South Pacific ocean. I read the Wikipedia article on Transpolar flights and apparently due to lack of diversion airports ETOPS aircraft (77E for AirNZ, 789 for LATAM, Qantas still uses the 4 engine B744) require 330 minutes. What if there's an engine failure!? How safe is this?


Chiming in with CARST. All things considered, an engine failure is not the biggest risk factor. Losing an engine for any reason is exceedingly rare nowadays. Losing both for unrelated reasons is astronomically unlikely. Realistically, you could run on one engine until you run out of fuel. The 180 or 240-minute numbers don't mean the engine is under undue stress after those times.

Certification for ETOPS is more likely to be restricted by fire suppression capability.

"How safe is this?" Judging by the fact that there has never been an ETOPS flight with dual unrelated engine failure since the start of ETOPS, and that thousands of ETOPS flights are conducted daily, I'll take my chances.

What about common cause failures, are there any additional steps for such exclusive flights?
I am thinking mostly fuel contamination, and that definitely caused multiple failures on ETOPS-grade aircraft, even if not on ETOPS missions.


Maintenance procedures are slightly different. As for the fuel, well that is one of the risk factors. However given the extremely low incidence of fuel contamination events that seriously affected an aircraft, it's not something that keeps me up at night.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
kalvado
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Sat Jan 05, 2019 4:05 am

Starlionblue wrote:
Maintenance procedures are slightly different. As for the fuel, well that is one of the risk factors. However given the extremely low incidence of fuel contamination events that seriously affected an aircraft, it's not something that keeps me up at night.

Well, as a self loading cargo I surely prefer that you guys are not exhausted and overstressed by each small thing in risk analysis trees...
I am talking more pedantic certification style.
And using FAA speak, BA38 was a catastrophic event (system loss). Such events are required to be Extremely Improbable, or once in a billion flights (which translates into something like every 50 years at current traffic levels).
The fact that BA38 occurred, and SN368 was a fairly close scenario, means that actually demonstrated probability is higher than the regulatory established threshold.

Now the question is if risk related to such contamination is increased with the distance to diversion airfield (I don't know, seems that sharp changes of temperature on descent is a bigger factor), and if heavily regulated ETOPS-a-lot flights need extra layer of protection like test at the gate (as far as I understand your responce, "it is not the current practice")
Once again, this is more of pedantic thinking, which may be over the edge....
 
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Starlionblue
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Sat Jan 05, 2019 4:20 am

I suppose the risk of an event from contamination might increase as the engines go through more of the contaminated fuel, but I honestly don't know. Perhaps it depends on the type of contamination.

There is a requirement for a water contamination check during refuelling, but that's not limited to ETOPS. For other contamination, I suppose there are audits and regular checks of fuel farms and piping, but I don't know the details. I suppose at a certain point you have to rely on the fuel supplier having proper procedures in place, and rigorous regulatory oversight.

Another famous example of fuel contamination is CX780 from Surabaya to HK. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cathay_Pacific_Flight_780 . In this case, modification of the fuel facilities in Surabaya was not performed up to spec, leading to particles in the fuel. The particles caused the fuel metering valves to seize.

The latest Air Crash Investigation episode is about the event. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TmGKhXozJzU

Side note: The IATA code for Singapore Airlines is SQ, not SN.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
kalvado
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Sat Jan 05, 2019 5:08 am

Starlionblue wrote:

Side note: The IATA code for Singapore Airlines is SQ, not SN.


I was talking about recent Brussels airlines event, SN358 = so I got SN part right...
 
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Starlionblue
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Sat Jan 05, 2019 10:25 am

kalvado wrote:
Starlionblue wrote:

Side note: The IATA code for Singapore Airlines is SQ, not SN.


I was talking about recent Brussels airlines event, SN358 = so I got SN part right...


Got it! Never heard of that incident. Thanks for the reference. :)
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
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AirKevin
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Sat Jan 05, 2019 1:52 pm

Starlionblue wrote:
kalvado wrote:
Starlionblue wrote:

Side note: The IATA code for Singapore Airlines is SQ, not SN.


I was talking about recent Brussels airlines event, SN358 = so I got SN part right...


Got it! Never heard of that incident. Thanks for the reference. :)

Here you go.

viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1411339
Captain Kevin
 
T54A
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Sat Jan 05, 2019 9:24 pm

As someone who regularly operates an A330 on beyond 180min ETOPS flights, I am far more concerned with cargo fire suppression than an engine failure. Fuel contamination will get you no matter how many engines you have. In any case many operators have moved away from ETOPS to EDTO. Risk is now not only assessed by engine failure, but also cargo fire suppression and other critical systems.
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timz
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Sat Jan 05, 2019 9:55 pm

CARST wrote:
all airliners flying such a Southern route must be ETOPS330 certified

They need 330 if they want to fly the great circle. If an AKL-EZE flight stays within 1600 nm of an airport, it increases its route by 250 nm, compared to great circle. A MEL-SCL flight staying within 1600 nm of an airport is 502 nm longer than the great circle.

That's assuming Hao isn't an allowed alternate.
 
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zeke
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Sat Jan 05, 2019 11:17 pm

T54A wrote:
As someone who regularly operates an A330 on beyond 180min ETOPS flights


What do you run to 207 minutes ?

timz wrote:
They need 330 if they want to fly the great circle.


Only need 300 minutes, CHC, PUQ, USH can spport the whole route in under 300 minutes
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MoKa777
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Sun Jan 06, 2019 12:07 am

With no intention to derail this thread but asking out of interest, what is the minimum ETOPS required for MEL/SYD-JNB/CPT?
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timz
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Sun Jan 06, 2019 12:31 am

Wouldn't that depend on whether Diego Garcia is an allowed alternate? Is it?

Or maybe Cocos Island is more useful -- is it an allowed alternate?
 
T54A
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Sun Jan 06, 2019 11:10 am

zeke wrote:
T54A wrote:
As someone who regularly operates an A330 on beyond 180min ETOPS flights


What do you run to 207 minutes ?

timz wrote:
They need 330 if they want to fly the great circle.


Only need 300 minutes, CHC, PUQ, USH can spport the whole route in under 300 minutes



245 min (cargo fire suppression of 260 min -15 min) or 1600nm in simple terms.
T6, Allouette 3, Oryx, King Air, B1900, B727, B744, A319, A342/3/6 A332/3
 
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CARST
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Mon Jan 07, 2019 7:46 am

wrong post, ignore... admins please delete
 
BravoOne
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Mon Jan 07, 2019 11:05 am

timz wrote:
Wouldn't that depend on whether Diego Garcia is an allowed alternate? Is it?

Or maybe Cocos Island is more useful -- is it an allowed alternate?


I believe Diego Garcia can be used for an alternate with approvals. Cocos Island? Not sure how that would fit into any South Polar ETOPS planning as I don't think it meets the AFRS standards? Could be wrong so I'll check it out when I have time.
 
BravoOne
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Mon Jan 07, 2019 12:11 pm

Looks like Cocos (Keeling) appears in a Airbus doc that I have but not in the Boeing doc which addresses 240 + minute restrictions regarding Cat 7+ for RFSS operations. Suspect that the Airbus doc is not factoring in the 240+ minute South Polar ETOPS flight plan when they list it as an alternate.
 
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zeke
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Mon Jan 07, 2019 9:35 pm

BravoOne wrote:
Looks like Cocos (Keeling) appears in a Airbus doc that I have but not in the Boeing doc which addresses 240 + minute restrictions regarding Cat 7+ for RFSS operations. Suspect that the Airbus doc is not factoring in the 240+ minute South Polar ETOPS flight plan when they list it as an alternate.


You would only be needing to use cocos if you were 180 minute, in that case cat 4 is fine.

If you are 240 minute, the whole route can be supported with PER and MRU.

http://www.gcmap.com/map?P=ypph-faor+&R ... 0x360&PM=*
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timz
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Tue Jan 08, 2019 12:39 am

SYD/MEL to JNB/CPT would need a slight detour to stay within 240 minutes -- maybe Cocos would eliminate that.

(No, looks like Cocos doesn't help much.)
 
timz
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Re: ETOPS/safety rating for flights between AU/NZ and Chile/Argentina

Tue Jan 08, 2019 11:38 pm

Turns out SYD to JNB is 5963 nm direct, or 6247 nm if you stay within 1600 nm of Perth and Mauritius.

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