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Guest

Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Thu Aug 30, 2001 1:05 pm

Last Friday an Airbus 330 lost both engines due to a fuel leak. See link below:

http://www.airdisaster.com/news/0801/29/news.shtml

I am interested to know how many times have this occurence (loss of all engines) happened in the past. My guess is not too often. Hope this forum can help me with this.

I shuddered to wonder what would have happened if this had been on a 200+ minutes ETOPS flight route...a/c manufacturers and authorities (CAA,JAA,FAA) used the extremely remote probability to argue for extended operations...Maybe it's not too remote after all.

Regards,
Nut
 
Guest

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Thu Aug 30, 2001 1:35 pm

I was in Vancouver, BC today and saw one of Air Transat's A330s on the ramp with both engine cowlings off. It was obviously being inspected very closely.

I have flown that route on several occassions and I can only say that the flight crew and every person on that flight has used up their entire lifetime supply of good luck. What were the odds of having those engines fail where they did and when they did - a trillion to one? By all accounts those people ought to be in the middle of the Atlantic treading water. Very well done Captain Piche.

By the way, what is it with those Canadians and running their jetliners out of gas???  Big grin
 
Junior
Posts: 43
Joined: Sat Apr 07, 2001 10:12 am

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Thu Aug 30, 2001 5:44 pm

Why does the ETOPS question always pop up here. This has nothing to do with it! If you run out of fuel, even 4 engines won't help you.
 
widebody
Posts: 1107
Joined: Wed Aug 02, 2000 5:08 pm

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Thu Aug 30, 2001 6:30 pm

ETOPS has popped up because Transport Canada suspended Air Transat's ETOPS authorisation......
 
CX Flyboy
Posts: 6190
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 1999 6:10 pm

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Thu Aug 30, 2001 8:11 pm

I asked this question on the other forum as well, but I will ask it here too.

I am not familiar with the A330 fuel system, but surely the crew must have been able to close the fuel crossfeeds, so that the fuel from the left hand wing did not leak out through the crack in the pipes in the right hand side of the aircraft. Why did they not do this. They could then have proceeded to a powered emergency landing somewhere.
 
Guest

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Fri Aug 31, 2001 1:03 am

That was a really good question Cx_flyboy. The authorities are investigating right now whether the pilots failed to follow procedures or the A330 procedures do not cover it at all. My guess would be that there were no procedures to call for shutting down one engine on a fuel leak. This occurrence must have been one of those unthinkable scenarios...

Regards,
Nut
 
Lubicon
Posts: 201
Joined: Sat Oct 14, 2000 5:13 am

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Fri Aug 31, 2001 1:24 am

To answer the original question, I can think of 5 occurences in the past where an airliner lost power to all it's engines. There are probably more.

1. The above mentioned Air Transet A330
2. The infamous Air Canada B767 Gimli Glider (ran out of fuel due to conversion errors between kg/lbs/litres/gallons when fueling the plane.
3. Ethiopian AIr B767 which ran out of fuel after being hijacked and ditched off the African coast.
4. KLM (I think) B747 which lost all 4 engines after ingesting volcanic ash from a volcanoe eruption near Alaska. (Believe they were able to restart them)
5. American B747 (United???) also ingested volcanic ash and lost all 4 engines over the Phillipines. Was also able to restart.
 
Guest

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Fri Aug 31, 2001 1:28 am

What about The Hapag Loyd that crashed last year? didn't it lost power just moments before landing?
 
danialanwar
Posts: 420
Joined: Fri Mar 16, 2001 6:13 pm

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Fri Aug 31, 2001 5:15 pm

Lubicon, I can add two more to your list:

6. British Airways B747, Kuala Lumpur-Perth, ingested volcanic ash over Indonesia which blocked all 4 engines. They managed to restart 1 prior to their emergency landing in Jakarta. The engine that they managed to restart was the one shut-down first and hence the one least damaged.

7. Singapore Airlines, flew through the same volcanic ashes a few days later. The pilot happened to have read the BA story in the newspaper, so he reacted quickly and shut-down all engines upon recognising that he's in the volcanic ash (not so easy at night ...) This allowed him to restart all engines after leaving the ash-cloud.

Notably, no airline or ATC warned the pilots of the ash-clouds ...
Best Business Class: Royal Brunei. Best Economy: Singapore Airlines. First: please send money first!
 
L-188
Posts: 29881
Joined: Wed Jul 07, 1999 11:27 am

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Fri Aug 31, 2001 5:26 pm

Confirm that was a KLM 747 that lost all four engines from the MT Spurr eruption in 92.

I wasn't in the state at the time but the aircraft made it to Anchorage. All four engines where changed as well as the windshields. All the Pax windows ended needed to be micro-meshed clear again. I remember hearing that this aircraft has fairly new off the assembly line at the time of the incident.

BTW, Volcanic ash does not show up on either ground or aircraft radar scopes. The rock particles are too small to reflect the RF energy from the dishes.
OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
 
tupolev154b2
Posts: 1269
Joined: Mon Jun 26, 2000 9:01 am

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Sat Sep 01, 2001 4:56 am

Didn't the clean-up of the KLM jet cost almost as much as a brand new 747?
 
OO-AOG
Posts: 1395
Joined: Mon Dec 11, 2000 1:24 am

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Sat Sep 01, 2001 5:24 am

You all forgot the Avianca 707 that run out of fuel while on holding over JFK. The captain didn't clearly declared an emergency. I agree that a fuel shortage, whatever the reason is, it's definately not an ETOPS question.
Falcon....like a limo but with wings
 
VC-10
Posts: 3552
Joined: Tue Oct 26, 1999 11:34 am

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Sun Sep 02, 2001 6:10 am

From what I have read the A330 crew missed something pretty fundemental. All engines have fuel flowmeters which record fuel used. It is basic airmanship to compare fuel used by the engines to the fuel left in the tanks. If the two don't match you have a leak.

If the fuel is being fed from wing to engine, the centre tank fuel will have been used by then, and one wing fuel qty is vastly different to the other and the engine's not using it you have a low pressure fuel leak. In which case you don't transfer fuel.

Admittedly this is with the benifit of hindsight, but I do know of a incident with an A340 where the crew noticed one wing was losing fuel quicker than the engines were using it so return to base. It was found the LP fuel filter housing helicoil threads had pulled out so fuel was leaking out.
 
widebody
Posts: 1107
Joined: Wed Aug 02, 2000 5:08 pm

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Mon Sep 03, 2001 7:50 pm

The 330 lost 12t of fuel in 10 minutes.....pretty heavy fuel burn for even a badly maintained 330.....the focus is now on why the pilots poured all the fuel into the emptying tank......and it now looks like the pilot has turned from being a hero to an awful twat.......the FCOM doesn't detail the transfer of fuel when a leak is clear.....

 
JG
Posts: 165
Joined: Tue Jun 07, 2005 1:53 am

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Mon Sep 03, 2001 11:30 pm

Although the fuel management in the 330 is automatic, that is a lot of gas to not notice. I choose to wait until the investigation is over. Widebody, in your post directly above... this may be just an international/cultural difference but I believe you ment to say twit (as a twat is something completely different  Smile).
 
airplay
Posts: 3369
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 1:58 am

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Tue Sep 04, 2001 12:06 am

Junior,

ETOPS certification is not granted purely by having the right equipment. The company's maintenance and operating procedures and standards are also scrutinzed. This thread certainly is relevant to the discussion of ETOPS.
 
CX Flyboy
Posts: 6190
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 1999 6:10 pm

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Tue Sep 04, 2001 12:08 pm

Having questioned the pilots actions previously, I now think this; We do fuel checks once an hour. If there is a sudden major leak after I have done my fuel check it could theoretically be an hour before anyone notices, if the crew are being particularly slack that day.
Total fuel is displayed on the upper EICAS screen and this would have dropped quickly in a leak, but may not have been noticed. We also monitor the various systems every now and then by selecting the various systems on the lower EICAS to look at. However, a bit of a tired or slack crew may not do this. In these cases, you would not notice a leak. In the 747-400 when we are curring from tank to engine and some of the crossfeeds are closed, and if there was a leak in say tank 4, fuel would not be supplied to that tank by other tanks. The left hand wing would get relatively heavier and the autopilot would be adding right aileron to counteract this. A pilot should notice after a while that the control column trim pointers are not centered. Obviously there is no column on the A330.
Basically I am wondering whether it would be easy to notice a sudden 12t drop in 10 minutes on the A330 or not.
I am not familiar with the A330, but is it normal to have crossfeeds on when running tank to engine? Is there any easily visible way of telling the autopilot is applying aileron forces?
 
SailorOrion
Posts: 1960
Joined: Tue Feb 06, 2001 5:56 pm

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Tue Sep 04, 2001 9:07 pm

From what I have read the A330 crew missed something pretty fundemental. All engines have fuel flowmeters which record fuel used. It is basic airmanship to compare fuel used by the engines to the fuel left in the tanks. If the two don't match you have a leak.

RIGHT, finally someone points this out. From what I have heard, the fuel pipes, not the fuel tanks themselves had the leak, but this is no reliable information....

I'm just wondering why on earth the computer does not compare fuel flow in the engines and fuel loss in the tank, I mean, that would not be too hard to implement....

Cx: when the autopilot move the control surfaces it is very well displayed on the indicators...

SailorOrion
 
jwenting
Posts: 9973
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2001 10:12 pm

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Tue Sep 04, 2001 10:03 pm

If Transat's ETOPS qualification was cancelled, how can they have landed an A310 from Canada in Amsterdam last saturday?
I wish I were flying
 
katekebo
Posts: 681
Joined: Sat Apr 14, 2001 12:02 am

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Tue Sep 04, 2001 10:47 pm

I think this incident indicates at least one of two errors occurred (or maybe both of them at the same time):

- Whoever designed / programmed the fuel management computer system has overlooked the failure mode that happened on this actual flight. The computer should be smart enough to compare the fuel consumption reported by the engine fuel flowmeters vs. the fuel amount reported by the tanks' fuel levels indicators and vs. the expected fuel consumption based on engine settings and actual flight duration, and identify and report any discrepancies. This a basic RE (Reliability Engineering) exercise and if the Airbus engineers missed this one they need a refreshment training in FMECA (Failure Mode Effect and Criticality Analysis or whatever is the French name for it).

- If the fuel management computer reported a dicrepancy, the pilots either overlooked it or ignored it. If the fuel management system did not do the right job due to the reasons exposed above, then they should do manual fuel management and tracking (although I think that in a modern airplane such as the A330 they rely 100% on the computerized fuel management system).

 
zionstrat
Posts: 225
Joined: Sat Apr 28, 2001 3:26 am

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Tue Sep 04, 2001 11:00 pm

Jwenting- Transats ETOPS was not cancelled, only reduced meaning they will have to fly farther north to stay close to greenland and iceland.

SailorOrion- You've hit the point that I hope will be the lesson for all manufactures (no A vs. B wars please!) from this incident- The fuel management systems have all the data they need to determine that a major leak is occurring (fuel consumption and remaining fuel)- I would thing that a discrepancy warning should be fast in coming as this is almost entirely a software mod.
 
VC-10
Posts: 3552
Joined: Tue Oct 26, 1999 11:34 am

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Wed Sep 05, 2001 2:39 am

From the A340 FCOM:-

Fuel Leak Procedure

A fuel leak may be detected by either:-

the sum of the Fuel on Board (FOB) and the F. Used is significantly less than the FOB at departure, or pax observation.

total fuel qty decreasing at an abnormal rate, or fuel imbalance or

a tank emptying too fast (leak from an engine or a hole on a tank), or

a tank overflowing (due to pipe rupture in a tank).

WHEN LEAK CONFIRMED

LEAK FROM ENGINE

Thrust lever IDLE

Eng Master Switch OFF

The X-feed can now be selected open for rebalancing or to allow use of the fuel from both wings. Do not restart the engine.

LEAK NOT FROM ENGINE OR LEAK NOT LOCATED

Fuel X-feed 1+2+3+4 .....Maintain closed
The X-feed valves must remain closed to prevent the leak effecting both sides

L+R Inner Tank .............Split

Descend to Gravity Fuel Ceiling

Eng Start Selector..........Ign

All tank pumps (when gravity ceiling reached)......Off
in almost all cases, switching the pumps off will prevent any further loss of fuel. All pumps must be switvched off, even if the keak is from one wing only, as there are some failures on one side that will result in fuel loss from the other side

If one engine flames out when there is still fuel in the feeding tank:

Leak from engine procedure.......Apply
All tank pumps.......................On




As the 330 is similar in system design I doubt that the A330 procedure will be much different
 
CX Flyboy
Posts: 6190
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 1999 6:10 pm

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Wed Sep 05, 2001 11:54 am

So it looks like a major screw-up on the part of the aircrew?
 
Gregg
Posts: 313
Joined: Sun Jun 18, 2000 12:49 pm

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Wed Sep 05, 2001 12:15 pm

ETOPS.... If the leak was caused by a poor enigine instalation that caused a fuel line to leak....

Wouldn't a 4 engine a/c have twice the likelyhood to have this happen?

This incident had nothing to do with ETOPS. Lets let the invesitgators determine if Airbus needs to change the fuel management system, or if the pilots caused the problem.
 
Guest

Etops

Wed Sep 05, 2001 1:17 pm

Some of you want to argue that this has nothing to do with ETOPS. Perhaps that's true from a puritan sense but it is quite related.

The concept of ETOPS, that it is allowed in the first place, is that all-engine out on an ETOPS route (across the ocean where the likelihood of volcanoes-induced engine-out is quite non-existent) is quite impossible (10 to the minus nine or smaller chance). Then it becomes the argument that what is the likelihood of having of just one engine left...then how long can it stay aloft. Keep in mind that the 1-hour ETOPS requirement was around for quite a while and recently it was upped to 207 minutes on the 777 for the very reason that Boeing and the engine manufacturers argued that engine is quite reliable that the likelihood of both engines failed is extremely improbable (again, ten to the minus nine) then with just one engine left, that engine will operate quite a long time, getting you quite a distance.

All of this is so far true as far as engine reliability goes. Absent was the consideration that both engines can be disabled quite readily due to a fuel leak or fuel starvation... hence my original question. I think it is quite related to ETOPS. I'd think ETOPS would have been heavily curtailed if this flight in question did not turn out quite happily as it did. The whole ETOPS argument is quite flawed imho.

Regards,
Nut
 
CX Flyboy
Posts: 6190
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 1999 6:10 pm

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Wed Sep 05, 2001 1:29 pm

Apparently, the crew noticed that there was a large fuel imbalance, but it never occured to them that there was a leak, so they purposely pumped fuel from the left tanks to the right, and before they knew it, there was no fuel. The rest is history!
 
CX Flyboy
Posts: 6190
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 1999 6:10 pm

RE: Airbus 330-Both Engine Out

Wed Sep 05, 2001 7:24 pm

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