I would not be surprised if the whole fleet of this type/engine gets grounded for some time.
Nothing bad happening, everyone uninjured and a plane making an orderly airport emergency landing is many layers of safety systems all working properly.
Airplanes are big fragile inflated sausages, and it takes relatively little by way of explosive to down one. An early model (the de Havilland Comet, operated by BOAC and South African Airways in the 1950s) was downed due to a design flaw leading to metal fatigue around the windows, with three aircraft lost in 12 months due to in-flight break-ups, 99 souls lost.
Even at lower altitudes, an uncontained fan or turbine failure can be rough on the cargo or passengers, either from direct shrapnel, decompression, or (partial or full) egress.
As one commenter put it, to an ER doctor this is a shallow wound with lots of blood.
WW2 fighter planes anyone?
1- meet the designers, understand the "why"s and not only the descriptive posthoc documentation
2- when you don't trust your instruments, keep following the procedures, checklists, (for this you need an excellent, trained, cold-headed team), and eventually try to reconstruct 'what aircraft you have'
3- trust the automated checklists but not too much! Crosscheck what's asked of you, with what you know of the aircraft. Since you know the 'why's you know the automated checklist system's designers probably never expected an aircraft with that much damage to keep flying...
4- there are no hall-passes for heroes. At the end De Crespigny fails his evaluation (the flight was an evaluation flight, with an instructor on board).
All around a great, great book for systems people.
Saying that, resultant vibration causing the inlet and nacelle cowling to separate isn’t supposed to happen either - because of the serious risk to the tail.
2018: United 777 same PW engine (seems very similar but without fire) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O-_IAKCBTxc&t=10s
2016: KAL 777 same PW engines (aborted takeoff after engine failure) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9bHrW_34kAk
All planes had zero casualties.
There's some good video off the current one on the BBC site https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-56141673
Sort of. The possibility of some types of failure is anticipated in the design of other parts of the engine. But there are also inspection procedures in place to ensure that engine parts that might fail are replaced before they fail. A report on a previous incident in Feb 2018 (referred to upthread) says that the root cause was a cracked engine fan blade that should have been detected on a previous inspection but wasn't. Failures that are supposed to be prevented by inspection and replacement of parts are not necessarily also allowed for in other parts of the design. So it's quite possible that luck is involved here as well and that a future failure of this type could have much worse consequences.
(A380 "blade off" test, rare footage of giant engine failing)
No, they're not. Fan blade cracks are expected; and fan blades are inspected for cracks so that the blades can be replaced before they fail.
Yes, it's also true that, as a second line of defense, engine housings are designed to contain failed blades. But the overall risk of the system is calculated on the assumption that that is a second line of defense, not the only line of defense. In other words, it's calculated on the assumption that a fan blade failure in flight will not be due to a crack that could have been detected at the last inspection but wasn't. It's calculated on the assumption that a fan blade failure in flight will be due to some other root cause that nobody has ever seen before. In other words, we have second lines of defense because we don't presume that we know about all possible root causes for a given failure. We don't expect fan blades to fail, but just in case one does due to some root cause we didn't know about, we design an extra layer of protection.
But what happened here is that an inspection regime designed to catch a root cause we do know about, failed to catch it. That's not within the design parameters of the system.
You still are not addressing my point.
Of course inspections cannot be relied upon to prevent failures due to root causes that are not known prior to the incident.
But inspections are relied upon to prevent failures due to root causes that are known. And that's what failed to happen in this case.
Put it this way: by your argument, the NTSB's final report on this should be something along the lines of "this was an expected failure and the containment worked, so no corrective action needs to be taken". Do you really think that's what will happen?
Whereas by my argument, the NTSB's final report on this will be something along the lines of "the inspection process failed to properly catch a cracked fan blade, and corrective actions A, B, and C need to be taken to fix the process".
Objects drop from aircraft all the time, daily. It isn't generally newsworthy unless part of a larger story. And even then, only if the object is found and recognized as being from an aircraft. Small rocks also fall daily from space, probably more by weight than aircraft-related objects, yet virtually nobody ever gets hit by space rocks.
That being said, there was a russian spacecraft that disintegrated and hit someone house, in the middle of siberia bo less. So it does happen, but its freak ecen3ts territory.
"It has happened many times before, including most infamously in 1996 when a Long March 3B rocket veered off course shortly after a launch and crashed into a village. Chinese officials reported six dead from the accident, although Western sources have speculated that hundreds of Chinese citizens may have died in the accident."
Could you proofread and type correctly so we understand what you're saying? I can't read all of what you're saying.
A commercial aircraft does not just accumulate wear and tear for 25 years until something breaks. They can basically fly indefinitely, but in reality after two or three D checks they are usually retired because the cost of the D check is more than the value of the aircraft.
In this case, something obviously went awry and it's both engineering, planning, and a miracle no one died or was crushed from debris from above. Regardless, comments like yours leave me feeling far more confident in this sort of thing.
Yes, though even something going wrong doesn't necessarily mean that we'd need to change any procedures.
Sensible procedures bring risks down to acceptable levels at an acceptable price. That level of risk is generally still more than 0%.
But yeah, a D check is so expensive I've heard there's a habit of dumping the aircraft on less observing flying companies some thousand miles before it comes up...
And in a similar incident in February 2018 on a 777 (referred to upthread), one of those checks was found to have failed: the NTSB determined that the root cause was a cracked engine fan blade that should have been detected on a previous inspection (and that would have resulted in the blade being replaced), but wasn't. If this incident turns out to have a similar root cause, that means there are issues with the preventive inspection and maintenance process.
How is that safe unless you've got a production line doing it? Seems impossible to re-assemble it in the same way as it was done in factory...
One thing that does bug me, though is that we now have two events where the shroud was lost. Were these uncontained failures (problematic because of potential for wing damage) or contained faiLures followed by aerodynamic shedding of the damaged shroud (system functioning as designed). I'm also somewhat concerned about the fire remaining in the burner stage. Might have just been lubricants, but I'd want to make sure the fire handle had been pulled and investigate whether it worked correctly.
But in that type of failure, you can't control where the pieces go.
It resulted in depressurization and partial ejection/death.
"Two small punctures were found in the right side fuselage just below the window belt with material transfer consistent with impact from pieces of an engine fan blade"
(From the link in parent to this thread https://avherald.com/h?article=4b4e8ca7&opt=0)
However, loss of the shroud doesn't necessarily imply there was a confinement failure. Damage to the shroud during the event can easily lead to the cowling shedding aerodynamically, which is also part of the design: the last thing you need is more drag on the dead engine side. We can't tell which that was in this case, but it's important that we do---the design criteria specifying that the aircraft can be safely recovered from a catastrophic single engine failure during any stage of flight would assume the failure is confined to the engine.
Some cheap airlines might ignore those rules, but none in the US. (Only the poorest, most corrup, countires in the world will ignore those limits)
Unlike some codebases, aircrafts actually have mandated maintenance. Which is why most accidents are due to human error and not massive technical failures.
(That's a feature, not a bug! The pervasive checklists and general professionalism mean that most 'normal' human errors are recovered from without enough consequences to make it into the news.
So only the really unlucky and incompetent are what we usually hear about.)
We don't know yet.
There are hundreds of flaws. Aircraft are not perfect. Any large airframe sees lots of little things break every year. That's what inspections and maintenance are for. But the system is designed so that such things never add up into something really bad. Be worried about the aircraft without flaws. To me, that means it either never gets used or isn't being inspected properly.
Enjoy your flight and enjoy Denver. Get a donut from Voodoo for me.
Animated recreation with audio of this one (UA328):
* Via: https://forums.liveatc.net/atcaviation-audio-clips/ual-328-u...
I am 110% certain that if I saw a plane on fire in the sky, I would not have the presence of mind to remember the term "cloud deck", let alone the rest of those details.
Ground observer: "Good sir, I do say that the cloud deck was quite low so I didn't get a good look, but the engine was mildly louder than usual, and possibly had smoke, but perhaps not, and appeared to be under control the whole time."
Me, probably: "AAAAAAAAAAAAA PLANE ON FIRE IN THE SKY, RUN!!!"
The excellent safety record of aviation originates from a detailed and pedantic paper trail that is written in blood. It's by learning as much as possible from every incident, without fear of censure or blame, that makes the skies safer for everybody.
> 1) I was giving Simon a heads up to look for a report out of DEN - if it was anything, I thought it was just something like a (big) compressor stall. That was why so many caveats were there - I wasn't sure at the time that the aircraft had had a problem. I didn't realize it was going to be widely reported until my mother texted me a couple of hours later asking if any of the plane parts came down close to me
> 2) Something I omitted that I should have put in: After I got home I imagined how many thumb-widths at arm's length it would take to occlude it (from memory), and plugged that into similar triangles and the length of a 737 (didn't realize it was a 777) to get an estimated altitude and got 2-4 thousand meters. I thought the cloud deck was only 2000 feet AGL or so, so I didn't believe the numbers. I did change "a couple" to "a few" though. Turns out it was ~8000 feet AGL. I should have believed more in the math!
it's like that old experiment that i cant find source for - wall st traders switched with military guys and wall st outperformed mils because they are used to dealing with uncertain information...
The saying is “aviation regulations are written in blood” because each new regulation is usually in response to crash. https://aviation.stackexchange.com/questions/13081/why-do-pe...
You don’t keep a “paper trail written in blood”.
I’m not an average bear though. I regularly read and refer to things learned from airlines and other high criticality career fields, and talk about them at conferences. My sister is an airline pilot and I might have been if I wasn’t medically disqualified.
I do participate in government emergency response work and that looks like the type of statement that would come from a trained observer who knows how to express directionality as unambiguously as possible.
I grew up about 5 miles from an airport and for many years I had a recurring dream that I was looking out the window at an airliner that looked odd somehow or other, until I realized with growing horror it was going to crash in the back yard.
I never saw anything like it in real life, nor was it ever a concern for me whether I was in a flight path when deciding where to live, but evidently my subconscious had a "to do" list that included "be prepared for planes dropping out of the sky".
Strangely, I didn't have nightmares ever that I can remember about being on a plane in distress. Even though as I got older I got more anxious about flying.
I don't know whether your age fits, but maybe you saw this and recalled it in your sleep every so often.
Add that to the recurring dreams of losing all teeth, going to school only to realize there's a 20 page essay due, dinosaur attacks (inspired by Jurassic Park), and barely missing my school bus (that was just this morning).
Btw I'm 35 now.
Today, of course, I'd be watching through my 500mm lens and taking pictures all the while. This was long before I got back into photography, though, and long before you could get a 500mm tele that didn't cost as much as a car. Even so, it was interesting, not frightening - remember that the sky is a long way away, and so are most things that happen there, weather notwithstanding.
Never did find out what actually happened.
That said, he definitely also got distressed, but mostly remembered to describe.
Considering how rare an occurrence is, it's really weird to have both happen on the exact same day.
By the way I'm surprised that fire keeps going on the B772. I assume the fuel was cut off, especially as the turbine seems to be just spinning in the wind. I'd imagine the remaining fuel would burn off quickly?
This would really be scary being a passenger (especially when you know the wing it's hanging under is full of fuel).
In fact, mathematicians were hired during the Battle of England to estimate whether the Germans were aiming for specific buildings (“why is there a cluster of bombs around this church???” or around some secret offices) or just spreading randomly. Verdict: They weren’t aiming, it was random chance that bombs made some clusters onto some buildings. This is what random looks like: No even distribution, sometimes you get a cluster which looks like a series.
But then you have to deal with degrees of freedom as well. If your search space is just 'two uncorrelated ~yearly events', there's enough of them that you'll always find false positives.
Anybody knows the name or urls of those?
If it is a Possion distribution then you'd expect them to bunch up and get years with none, then them concentrated over a few years.
Possion distributions usually imply a time factor. That's concerning in this case as it implies maintenance isn't effective.
Imagine you throw a three darts a board. Which is more likely: all darts are equidistant, or 2 of the darts are closer to each other than the 3rd? Now imagine it's 3 events in time rather than 3 darts on a board. And the same logic applies to an arbitrary number of events, of course.
It's more typical to have this kind of failure early in the take off where the parts would fall on the airport and nobody would talk about it.
All the rest of the news about circling at 10,000ft and then landing at a nearby airport is completely standard procedure that gets practiced all the time in the 6 months simulator checks. Basically you climb high enough to be able to dump fuel without it reaching the ground (minimum 6000ft, preferably higher) and still not too high such that you're burning a lot of fuel quickly because at 10,000 ft fuel usage is way higher than at 30,000. Then when the fuel dump is complete, engine secured, checklists done it's a relatively normal landing. Especially if you have 4 engines but even with 2 it's a landing every pilot can do and is trained for all the time.
Video of the flying debris https://twitter.com/jacdecnew/status/1363241028690599938?s=2...
* careful and circumspect in one's speech or actions, especially in order to avoid causing offense or to gain an advantage.
The word they were using was "discrete":
* individually separate and distinct.
120.15 is/was not used for anything else at Denver, so people could talk about the situation on the ground without effecting the operations elsewhere. Once the problem was 'contained', the rest of the airport could go back to operating 'normally' on the other runways.
I'm still a bit surprised that the audio went uncaptured. It is interesting how much information that would be interesting to the public still spills into the ether.
That's exactly why. Because then it helps you getting out of your turn, instead of fighting against it.
The Radar Associate works alongside the Radar Controller, and performs coordinations and other actions to assist the Radar Controller. It is the Radar Controller who talks with the aircraft on frequency.
In the Ocean West sector, the Radar Associate controller coordinates with Mexico's Air Traffic Controllers to determine safe routes, altitudes, and crossing times at the FIR boundary, as well as pass along any other pertinent information.
I won't answer any questions about today's event here, but if anyone has any other questions, feel free to ask. I will also double-check the FAA's social media guidelines when I go back to work tomorrow. So, if I don't answer your question today, please check tomorrow.
TF or "Tango Foxtrot" are my operating initials - something which every Air Traffic Controller has and is unique per facility. We use our operating initials to identify ourselves when we perform coordinations via the landline.
I was also a Radar Associate controller at HCF Center (in Hawaii) for United Flight 1175, a Boeing 777, from San Fransisco to Honolulu when it lost its engine cowling back in 2018.
The views expressed here are my own and not necessarily those of FAA.
With Approach, sector boundaries can also change depending on which runway(s) they're landing.
You could potentially call up the facility and ask for copies of the sector charts, but I don't know what kind of response you will get.
Right now due to COVID-19, facility tours are not allowed, otherwise you could see ATC in-person and ask to take a look at their charts then, as well as ask the Controllers any questions, workload-permitting.
The facilities that I've worked at (HCF Center and Houston Center) have been happy to give tours, but they have to be during normal business hours, and you have to be a United States citizen. For a tour, I suggest organizing a group of pilots or others interested in aviation, rather than just going by yourself.
The views expressed here are my own and not necessarily those of the FAA.
Some background information to build on…
An Air Traffic Controller's job title when they start out is Air Traffic Control Specialist. An Air Traffic Control Specialist starts out in the AG pay band (Academy Graduate). When that Controller gets certifications, they move up to the D1 pay band (Developmental), then to D2, D3, and when they get all of their certifications or "fully certify", they end in the CPC pay band and their job title changes to Certified Professional Controller.
The Radar Controller position is also called the R-side, and the Radar Associate position is also called the D-side. A trainee needs to certify on all of their D-sides before they start training on their R-sides.
So basically the answer to your first two questions is "yes". However there can be a more experienced controller working the D-side while a new controller is working the R-side. The Air Traffic Controllers rotate through the different positions throughout the day. It is based on when someone arrives for their shift, or comes back to the control room from their break, they check with the controller that has been on a position the longest, and asks that person if they want a break. If not, the Controller moves on to the next person who has been working the longest, and so forth.
ARTCCs or Air Route Traffic Control Centers or just "Centers", are divided into "specialties" (or "areas") that controllers are assigned to. Each specialty is divided into sectors. At the minimum, each sector needs to staffed by a Radar Controller. If the sector is busy with a lot of traffic or is complex due to weather events, or maybe traffic being rerouted from another sector, then a Radar Associate position will be staffed at that sector. If traffic is very light, for example in the middle of the night, sectors can be combined and one Radar Controller will work multiple sectors and talk to multiple aircraft on different frequencies.
The time it takes to get certified depends on many factors. It could be anywhere from one month, to six months. From starting out to get fully certified, can take anywhere between two years, to five years. It depends on many factors, such as personal ability, training opportunities, training backlogs, etc.
It is common for people to switch facilities at least once. Some stay at their first facility, some move several times. When a Controller graduates from the FAA's training facility (that's where "Academy Graduate" comes from), they are given a short list of facilities to chose from. The list constantly changes based on the FAA's staffing needs.
The FAA does do "direct hires" for people with previous ATC experience (usually through military) directly into certain facilities, but a new hire without experience won't know where they'll go when they start out.
All of the above.
Whenever an Air Traffic Controller transfers to a new facility, or even transfers to a new specialty within a facility, they have to train and get certified on all of the new sectors. Each sector is different due to traffic flow, types of traffic, equipment limitations, etc.
For the Houston Center Ocean specialty, equipment familiarization is very important for Controllers. There are 5 sectors: Ocean West, Ocean East, Offshore West, Offshore Central, and Offshore East. Ocean West and East deal primarily with aircraft flying between the United States and Mexico. There are different airways that aircraft can take, and each one has different characteristics (crossing airways, airways defined by RNAV fixes vs bearings off of VORTACs, radio coverage, and radar coverage).
In the Offshore sectors, radio coverage is harder to manage. There are multiple transmitters and receivers that are located on different offshore platforms, and the ocean elements and weather can affect the equipment. At our positions next to the radar scopes, there are touchscreens with many different buttons to select which frequencies we want to monitor, transmit on, use primary or backup sites, etc. Most sectors do not have to toggle between different transmitters, but in the Offshore sectors, that's a common occurrence. There are also different transmitter sites for the Ocean sectors, so we commonly get pilots saying that they're losing us on the radio when we are talking to another aircraft a hundred miles away, and we can hear the pilot just fine.
In the Ocean sectors, radar doesn't cover the middle of the Gulf of Mexico, so we have to rely on aircraft position reports unless they have ADS-B.
At HCF Center, there are mountains which block radar coverage, so it's good to know where we can expect to lose or establish radar contact with aircraft.
Yes, there is an element of becoming familiar with the routine traffic. You see many of the same flights every day, so you know where they are going. It got to the point at HCF Center, where if someone told me a flight number, I could tell them the departure and destination airports without looking.
However, just like pilots, Air Traffic Controllers cannot let routine turn into complacency. We can never just assume anything, if we are unsure, we have to ask or restate something. Safety is our number one priority.
I might look for the link later, but there's an incident with a Youtube reconstruction where a private pilot is nearly out of fuel, the weather is poor, and he's approaching a USAF base en route to his last hope landing site. Airbases are military facilities, closed to civilian traffic. He asks the controller if he can land there. She says he can't... unless it's an emergency.
He should say "Yes, this is an emergency, I'm on fumes here and the weather is much worse than I expected". She'd turn on the airfield's powerful landing lights, and maybe he'd spend the evening explaining his screw up and apologising to a base commander or at worst spend the night in a cell. Nobody dies. Instead he pressed on, and his dire situation only became clear to her when it was too late and he was already doomed.
There are actually two different emergency calls. There is "mayday", and there is "pan-pan", which is a less urgent version of "mayday", but that is hardly ever used.
Here's an interesting example where two aircraft had declared PAN-PAN for quite different reasons, while coming into Sydney. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DfidHywKmZI
It was over a mile long and had landing lights. It was owned by some Texas billionaire brothers who kept their jet there. The people there were actually super nice and loaned us a car to get lunch.
Fear of declaring an emergency seems to be fairly common in GA incidents with lower airtime pilots.
1) Often ATC will ask you a lot of distracting questions. It starts with what the problem is and how many souls are on board, but can be lengthy and doesn't solve your problem.
If you listen to the Sully Hudson flight, you can hear how terse Sully is to avoid a conversation with ATC while he's busy flying.
2) You may be asked for a written letter afterwards, or an investigation may start. Your airline would be interested.
3) ATC is not responsible for your plane, and cannot fly it for you. Most ATC don't even have an airplane rating.
Pilots have a "get out of jail free card" by filing a NASA report for non-intentional violations. You can search that database.
I filed one once when I was flying an old rental with sketchy navigation equipment into Class B just in case the gauges were out of tolerance.
Source: commerically-rated pilot.
The fact that they requested a left turn at first it meant the controller knew the right engine was out and they'd need left turns to come in. Always find the level of training impressive and I'm glad they made it back safely.
Aviate, Navigate, Communicate
DISTRESS (MAYDAY)- A condition of being threatened by serious and/or imminent danger and of requiring immediate assistance.
URGENCY (PAN-PAN)- A condition of being concerned about safety and of requiring timely but not immediate assistance; a potential distress condition.
That said, controllers are human. As long as you get the message across somehow they'll do everything they can to help, even with non-standard phraseology.
Of course, the risk of non-standard phraseology is that you might be misunderstood - especially in countries where English isn't the primary language. It's still good to stick to standard ICAO phraseology whenever possible.
I suppose the aim is to make it absolutely clear as quickly as possible that you want ATC to press the big red button labeled 'crash' which sets off the alarms in the airport fire station and causes other controllers to start diverting flights away and telling planes on approach to go around.
These two podcast episodes about the last major crash at Heathrow are pretty interesting if you want to know what happens in ATC during something like this. The fire appliances were already en route before the plane hit the ground.
Also known as the 7110 or the point sixty-five, it includes rules that Air Traffic Controllers must follow to ensure safe and effective operations. So if you're a pilot and are wondering why you have a Hold For Release or are told "unable", you might find the reason in this document.
The Wikipedia article  links the PDF version as well as the online version.
Seriously, though: software "engineering" could actually earn the name, if we had rigorous professional standards, regulatory oversight, and product liability.
You don't see that happening with aviation software where requirements are set in stone.
Apple does that and they couldn't be further apart from aerospace engineering quality. Their software and hardware has been historically littered with problems and bugs.
I'm well aware of the admixture of folklore, experience, and caffeine-fueled inspiration that constitutes much of the software that runs our world.
We can not prove everything, as others pointed out the fundamental issue here is the "halting problem". However, this doesn't mean we can't prove anything. Wikipedia says:
> In computability theory, Rice's theorem states that all non-trivial, semantic properties of programs are undecidable.
I often feel like the "trick" is to push the trivial stuff to be as useful as possible. You can work from several vectors: 1. You build better static analyzers (difficult and computationally expensive the further you push it - but that's what we're doing) 2. reduce the complexity of the "analyzed thing" (high level language, assembly,...) to allow for easier analysis, while still being useful (a assembly language only supporting 'nop' is trivial to analyze, but pretty useless overall; otoh you can disallow some constructs in C to make the language easier to analyze).
There are of course other forms of "provably correct". E.g. programming in a language that has proofs attached to it, like coq [which is the name of a proof assistant]. Disclaimer: I've never used coq myself, but know plenty who do. I think that's something that might interest you. [And thanks to the genius who christened that tool: No, seriously, I'm not trying to be rude!]
 Didn't check that link, but maybe you find it interesting https://www.cs.princeton.edu/courses/archive/spring13/cos510...
There are of course other approaches than coq, e.g. Isabelle is often mentioned. See the "See also" on https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coq
I'd also point out that in MechE/CivE fields, you're still dependent on materials (and maintenance) working as advertised. It's also often the case that operating conditions just end up being different from what was designed for or certain failure modes weren't considered. See, e.g. the Citibank Building in NYC http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_eye/2014/04/17/the_citicorp_t...
The big issue is that writing a useful specification can be hard. Especially if you want to also make the specification easy to check.
A side issue is that your proof will make assumptions about how a computer works that are simplified.
From need a better MTBF? Throw a couple more inline flip-flops.
Can I tell your customers that the software you're selling them is only built for "low consequence" applications?
 Apache/2.2.17 (Unix) mod_ssl/2.2.17 OpenSSL/1.0.2r mod_perl/2.0.4 Perl/v5.10.0
Sadly, many aren't.
If you're talking about using JS to load content on page load, for whatever reason, that async content can also be static. For example some sites use the URL fragment (hash parameter) to load content, but the server does not receive this:
The fragment identifier functions differently to the rest of the URI: its processing is exclusively client-sided with no participation from the web server - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/URI_fragment
But concatenating strings together is the same in any language, right?
The plane began to "distribute engine parts". The pictures show us just how impressive the distribution was.
What I do think is a happy outcome is the debris from the disintegrating engine did not fall on someone and kill/injure them.
Source: also a pilot
Source: Over 3500 hours turbine time.
I’m saying that practicing engine-outs/fires is psychologically different than bringing a flaming aircraft safely to the ground with several hundred souls on board.
0. Why was the engine flaming in the first video? Why didn't the pilots cut fuel to that engine immediately and use the other engine to land?
1. What is the best way to communicate issues to the pilot if you're a passenger and see something the pilot can't see? For example once I was sitting in the back of the aircraft on Airtran and I saw a screw on the jet loosening and almost falling out. I told a flight attendant but they were just kind of "Um hmm okay thanks for letting us know! Would you like any orange juice?"
Flight attendants is the passengers' interface to the whole flight environment. BTW there's seniority rank among the attendants too, chain of command, so to speak.
I would think that your observation was likely being noted, not sure if relayed to the pilots. Juice is the best option, noone needs to have a panic in the cabin.
Did you try to mention that observation again but at the arrival, during the "Thank you, good bye!" time? Sometimes you may even see the captain there.
P.S. Once, my flight was cancelled (all boarded already) because the crew discovered a missing "Exit" sign in the cabin and the mechanics at the airport could not find the exact part for the plane model. Call this an attention to details!
- 8 January 1989
- The Kegworth air disaster - British Midland Flight 92, a Boeing 737-400
- Pilots had an engine issue and shut down the good engine by mistake.
> The pilots throttled back the working right engine instead of the malfunctioning left engine. They had no way of visually checking the engines from the cockpit, and the cabin crew — who did not hear the captain refer to the right hand engine in his cabin address — did not inform them that smoke and flames had been seen from the left engine.
> Several passengers sitting near the rear of the plane noticed smoke and sparks coming from the left engine.
> The pilots mistakenly shut down the functioning engine. They selected full thrust from the malfunctioning one and this increased its fuel supply, causing it to catch fire. Of the 126 people aboard, 47 died and 74 sustained serious injuries.
I have no idea what the best way to communicate would be, but this is an example of an incident where it could have saved lives. It would be good if there was a protocol. (Perhaps requiring the captain's address to mention which engine they believe has the issue).
1. Kudos, that's exactly the way to do it. If it was a screw on top of the wing though, it was likely communicated later as one screw coming off a panel isn't a big deal.
Turbine blades failing and piecing a hydraulic line on the other hand...
See the 3rd response...
Airlines have contracts with companies who provide a sat phone link to doctors who have the flight information and medical facilities at possible diversion airfields. Eg MedAire.
The view coming in to Keflavik, with whales swimming in the ocean below, was pretty cool.