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Turkey plane crash in Amsterdam





coollateral
Quote:
A Turkish Airlines plane has crashed on landing at Amsterdam's Schiphol international airport, killing one person and injuring at least 20.

The plane, with 135 passengers on board, crashed short of the runway near the A9 motorway and suffered significant damage.

It was Flight 1951 from Istanbul and was a 737-800 aircraft.

Witnesses have spoken of seeing at least 20 people walking from the wreckage, with luggage scattered about.

Turkish media said at least 50 people had survived unhurt.

The BBC's Geraldine Coughlan in the Hague says Dutch television has been showing pictures of helicopters at the scene, with about 20 ambulances and fire engines.

Schiphol airport has six runways and one major passenger terminal. In 2007, it handled 47 million passengers, ranking fifth in Europe behind London, Paris, Frankfurt and Madrid.

from BBC
Klaw 2
Here is the bad news;
9 people are confirmed to be dead 50 persons have injuries and 25 of them are in a bad condition.

Source:
http://www.nu.nl/algemeen/1923104/negen-doden-bij-vliegtuigcrash-schiphol.html
(I translated it because it's in Dutch)
deanhills
Beginning to get scary with all the air crashes. Wonder what happened as they still do not know? One possibility apparently is that the plane ran out out of fuel, either it had still fuel and it did not get to the engines, or there was no fuel at all. Good part is that it did not hit houses, but an open field. Wonder whether this was pure luck or whether the pilot had something to do with it. Still, from the little information that is available as to the cause, it would appear the plane just fell out of the blue sky. It had been lowering itself for landing and a little while before it was due to land, it fell abruptly and broke into three pieces.
prithvi
Just saw this on the news.

This is really a bad thing to happen.
Quite a few air accidents happening lately. Sad

Yeah, seems like fuel shortage.............we can get to know the exact reason only after further investigations.
deanhills
I believe that a press conference will be held shortly. Read the newspaper today and noticed some photos of the passengers at the airport making arrangements for further travel. They looked pretty grim, must have been a horrific shock to their system. Amazing that there were so many survivors, and no fire. They say three of the crew died, wonder whether those included the pilots?
Nick2008
It's definitely becoming more scary now with all these accidents. Traveling by airplane is still the second most safest way of travel (the old saying, "you're more likely to die driving to the airport, then flying on the airplane").

I wonder what caused the engines to fail though, you know engines don't just stop working because they feel like it.

A witness stated that there was no warning from the cockpit:
BBC wrote:

Survivor Jihad Alariachi said there had been no warning from the cockpit to brace for landing before the ground loomed up through the mist.


Since there was no warning, I highly doubt that fuel was the cause, because it would be very odd if the pilots noticed a fuel leak or fuel problem and didn't even notify the cabin.
deanhills
Nick2008 wrote:
Since there was no warning, I highly doubt that fuel was the cause, because it would be very odd if the pilots noticed a fuel leak or fuel problem and didn't even notify the cabin.


What do you think it could have been? I checked through some databases and there does not seem to be a previous accident that matches this data. I.e there were a large number of accidents when landing, but most were because of fuel running out, or something tangible. This was is completely different in that the plane just dropped out of the sky. Do you think it could have been instrument failure, or engines just completely ceasing? Although probably it would have been highly unlikely that both engines would have ceased at the same time? So perhaps instrument failure?
Nick2008
Well, the instruments simply "failing" wouldn't magically stop the engines from running. The engines do provide electricity to the aircraft, so if they're on, the instruments are on. I guess it's possible (very rare though) that an instrument could "malfunction" for some reason, and possibly send out a signal to shut down the engines. This would hurt the Boeing industry though. We should also wait until Air Traffic Control tapes are released, and see if there is any indication of trouble. I mean a fuel link is major, but it isn't something that happens 1 second and all your engines stop working. The pilots should have been aware of a fuel leak, they would have at least 30 minutes - 1 hour of flight time left, even with the fuel leak, and at least notified air traffic control or the cabin. Two days before this flight, the pilot reported a failure of the "Master Caution Light," but that was fixed later. The aircraft flew 8 successful takeoffs and landings with that repair, until the accident.

Investigators have said engine trouble may have played a part of the accident. It hasn't been actually confirmed yet.

Remember, just like the Buffalo crash, flying at a slow speed and stalling is always a possibility.

It's a miracle though that the plane didn't even catch fire, if it did there would be less survivors. Now thinking about it, if the plane didn't have much fuel left, it wouldn't catch fire. So running out of fuel is a definite possibility. It would still be very odd that the pilots didn't notice it.

It's also possible that the pilots did notice a fuel leak, and thought they would make it to the airport. Later to find out they were off by a little bit.
ocalhoun
Nick2008 wrote:

It's a miracle though that the plane didn't even catch fire, if it did there would be less survivors. Now thinking about it, if the plane didn't have much fuel left, it wouldn't catch fire. So running out of fuel is a definite possibility. It would still be very odd that the pilots didn't notice it.

Perhaps that's where the instrument failure comes in...
Combined malfunctions such as a fuel leak and the fuel gauge failing to show the right amount of fuel could cause this. Though such a coincidence is somewhat unlikely, a given plane crashing is also unlikely. Perhaps the measuring part of the fuel gauge caused the leak and failed to read properly as part of the same malfunction.
deanhills
Nick2008 wrote:
Remember, just like the Buffalo crash, flying at a slow speed and stalling is always a possibility.

It's a miracle though that the plane didn't even catch fire, if it did there would be less survivors. Now thinking about it, if the plane didn't have much fuel left, it wouldn't catch fire. So running out of fuel is a definite possibility. It would still be very odd that the pilots didn't notice it.

It's also possible that the pilots did notice a fuel leak, and thought they would make it to the airport. Later to find out they were off by a little bit.


Thanks for all this info Nick. Pilot error could be a problem, but then we get back to the fact that the pilot did not mention anything about this to the crew? Everything was going according to plan and they were in the process of landing. Indications are that the pilot did not know.

ocalhoun wrote:
Perhaps that's where the instrument failure comes in...
Combined malfunctions such as a fuel leak and the fuel gauge failing to show the right amount of fuel could cause this. Though such a coincidence is somewhat unlikely, a given plane crashing is also unlikely. Perhaps the measuring part of the fuel gauge caused the leak and failed to read properly as part of the same malfunction.


I think you have something here Ocalhoun. Yes, it does look unlikely, but unless the pilot was withholding information, i.e. calling to the tower for an emergency landing that they were short of fuel, that could be the only answer to the problem. He did not know. The fuel gauge failed to show the right amount of fuel. I can't remember where, but I am sure I've seen one of these when I was doing my searches last night.

Has anyone heard yet whether the pilot survived the crash?
ocalhoun
deanhills wrote:

I think you have something here Ocalhoun. Yes, it does look unlikely, but unless the pilot was withholding information, i.e. calling to the tower for an emergency landing that they were short of fuel, that could be the only answer to the problem. He did not know. The fuel gauge failed to show the right amount of fuel. I can't remember where, but I am sure I've seen one of these when I was doing my searches last night.

Hm... if the people fueling the plane at the previous airport were using the same gauge to determine when they had put enough fuel in, they could have put in too little fuel, but thought that it had plenty, because it had some left over from the last flight. (Supposing, for example, that the gauge would always be 1/4 tank overestimated.) In the name of fuel economy by reduced weight, they usually don't put a full tank in anyway, so if their goal was a 3/4 full tank, and the gauge erroneously read 1/4 too high at all times, they would put in only 1/2 of a tank, which might not be enough. The pilot wouldn't know because the gauge would still read the proper amount the whole time... It would only become evident when the engines stopped for lack of fuel while the gauge still read 1/4, and by then it would be far too late.
deanhills
ocalhoun wrote:
Hm... if the people fueling the plane at the previous airport were using the same gauge to determine when they had put enough fuel in, they could have put in too little fuel, but thought that it had plenty, because it had some left over from the last flight. (Supposing, for example, that the gauge would always be 1/4 tank overestimated.) In the name of fuel economy by reduced weight, they usually don't put a full tank in anyway, so if their goal was a 3/4 full tank, and the gauge erroneously read 1/4 too high at all times, they would put in only 1/2 of a tank, which might not be enough. The pilot wouldn't know because the gauge would still read the proper amount the whole time... It would only become evident when the engines stopped for lack of fuel while the gauge still read 1/4, and by then it would be far too late.


This is even a better explanation. Makes great probable sense. The Wikipedia shortcut below give more information about the Boeing 707-800 including crashes of the Boeing 737-800. I can imagine it looks many because probably the 737-800s have to be a large percentage of the total world fleet, but can imagine Boeing will be keen for this to be rather a pilot error.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boeing_737-800#737-800

The link below shows more crashes by Boeing 737-800:

http://edition.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/europe/02/26/turkish.airline.crash/#cnnSTCOther2

I thought this was rather interesting:

Quote:
August 20, 2007 - China Airlines Flight 120, a Boeing 737-800 inbound from Taipei, caught fire shortly after landing at Naha Airport in Okinawa Prefecture, Japan. There were no fatalities. Following this incident, the FAA issued an Emergency Airworthiness Directive (EAD) on 25 August ordering inspection of all Boeing 737NG series aircraft for loose components in the wing leading edge slats within 24 days. On 28 August, after initial reports from these inspections, the FAA issued a further EAD requiring a detailed or borescope inspection within 10 days, and an explicit tightening of a nut-and-bolt assembly within 24 days.[25]
deanhills
Looks as though it was a faulty altimeter that caused the Turkish Airline crash in Amsterdam. A false reading from a faulty altimeter caused the autopilot system to sharply slow the airplane short of the runway. Boeing has sent Memos to all Airlines flying the 737 aircraft to pay careful attention to its flight instruments.

Quote:
Pieter van Vollenhoven, head of the Dutch Safety Board, said yesterday that as the aircraft was at 1,950 feet the faulty altimeter indicated that the airliner's height was at minus eight feet. Because the autopilot and autothrottle were running from this flawed data the plane automatically reduced engine power as it would in the final seconds before landing.

The plane's altitude and airspeed continued to fall for a minute and a half without the pilots noticing, when at 450 feet and an airspeed 46 mph lower than it should be the aircraft's stick shaker activated to warn the flight crew of an imminent aerodynamic stall. The pilots applied full engine thrust, but were too late to prevent the accident, and the aircraft crashed into a field and broke into three pieces.


http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Schiphol_airliner_crash_blamed_on_altimeter_failure,_pilot_error?curid=121967
harismushtaq
If this is true, then what about other instruments in the inertial system. They should have guessed that the plane is stalling and terrain is not too close. More over, at the time when the plane is very close to the runway, pilots should also visually identify the runway and should monitor the approach very closely. When there was a drastic drop in the airspeed, the autopilot should have been disagganged immediatly.

Not sure as I am not a pilot but this was a relatively new 737 and the incident is strange.
deanhills
harismushtaq wrote:
If this is true, then what about other instruments in the inertial system. They should have guessed that the plane is stalling and terrain is not too close. More over, at the time when the plane is very close to the runway, pilots should also visually identify the runway and should monitor the approach very closely. When there was a drastic drop in the airspeed, the autopilot should have been disagganged immediatly.

Not sure as I am not a pilot but this was a relatively new 737 and the incident is strange.
Good points. I'm not a pilot either, but it is obvious that the pilots were not paying real attention, and possibly by the time they did, it was too late. The stalling could even have happened as a result of last-minute reaction.
harismushtaq
I do not know very much about the ILS approaches but even this was a category 3 landing, the pilots should intercept the approach and execute a go-around if they cannot see the runway at the height of 200 feet. Autopilot systems normally use altimeter readings from the same instrument that displays it on the panel so if the autopilot was following an errorenous reading, the pilots would also have to be able to see it.

We will have to wait for the final investigation report to come as it seems to be a series of errors caousing the crash.
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