Moderators: richierich, ua900, PanAm_DC10, hOMSaR
Starlionblue wrote:If there's anything that keeps pilots up at night, it's the thought of a cargo fire.
I hate to judge the dead. Pilots go to work intending to do the best they can. But in this case, it seems fairly clear that none of the flight crew had adequate situational awareness, and their CRM was atrocious.
A fire/smoke warning, especially in cargo, should be treated with extreme seriousness. An alarm may be spurious, but it may not be. Treat them all as authentic until proven otherwise. They spent four minutes dicking around when they could have turned immediately and maintained high speed all the way in. As the saying goes, "it's much more fun watching the plane burn while standing outside it, on the ground".
Depressurising would certainly have been an option, yes. It might have helped at least delay the spread slightly. But it was just one of many factors.
I don't know the L-1011, but in modern aircraft the cabin will depressurise completely on touchdown. However, some reading about the accident shows that the pressurisation system was on standby and thus the aircraft did not depressurise automatically. This was probably the final thing that doomed the passengers.
There isn't just one cause of course, but several. If you remove any of them, the accident would either not have happened at all, or would have been survivable.
- Dangerous goods in cargo and/or pax bags.
- Poor training.
- Poor CRM.
- Nonchalance in the face of a potentially lethal situation.
- Lack of urgency returning to the airport.
- Lack of urgency stopping and evacuating once on the runway.
- Unclear comms with ATC and cabin crew.
- Inadequate insulation material in the cargo hold.
- Depressurisation system on standby.
Of course, that's easy for me to say, at zero airspeed and zero altitude forty-two years later. It's very different when you're on the spot, and the industry has learned a lot since those days.
113312 wrote:There were many problems with crew communication and crew management that resulted in this accident becoming a teaching example. One of the many things that the F/E did incorrect was to mismanage the pressurization such that the airplane remained pressurized after landing. This made it impossible to open the doors. The Captain made many mistakes but one of the ones with fatal results was that he did not stop immediately on the runway. He passed all of the emergency vehicles that had to chase the plane to the point where it finally stopped. This allowed the fire to expand significantly.
Starlionblue wrote:The urge to vacate the runway and not block it is strong.
It should be noted, however, that about 3 minutes were spent by the crew in looking for the aft cargo smoke warn- ing procedure. Evidence indicated that this difficulty was the
result of a split of'the Emergency and Abnormal procedures into Emergency, Abnormal and Additional. The crew apparently believ- ed that the correct procedures were in the Abnormal section whi- le it was actually in the Emergency section. Another factor which possibly contributed to the time required to find the loca- tion of the proper procedures was that the flight Engineer was affected by "Dyslexia". The manifestation of such a condition
can cause confusion of switches, actions, etc.
cedarjet wrote:Depressurising the cabin doesn’t help fight a fire. There might not be enough O2 up there to sustain consciousness but plenty to sustain a fire. The best you can hope is the outflow valves might evacuate a bit of smoke. It doesn’t slow the progression of the fire at all
bourbon wrote:cedarjet wrote:Depressurising the cabin doesn’t help fight a fire. There might not be enough O2 up there to sustain consciousness but plenty to sustain a fire. The best you can hope is the outflow valves might evacuate a bit of smoke. It doesn’t slow the progression of the fire at all
Depressurization would have allowed the opening of the exit doors though.
RetiredWeasel wrote:A cargo fire warning light illuminated on a NW DC-10 in 2005 over Iran. Crew made an emergency landing in Tehran, the first US passenger jet to land in the country since the Sha was overthrown. An hour long narrative of the event by the CPT here:
Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe
Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days
Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit
Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior
Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft
Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials
Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions
Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin
Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon
Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos
Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft
Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries
Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground
Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos