ARFF (Airport Rescue and Fire Fighting)

Small jet taxies off runway, gets stuck in snow at Bozeman airport

ARFF Working Group - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 07:45

BELGRADE – A small business jet taxied off of the runway Sunday morning at Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport, delaying flights for a short time.

Airport Deputy Director Scott Humphrey told MTN News that around 11 a.m., the jet taxied about 20 feet off of the runway and ended up in about 2 feet of snow after the pilot’s vision was obscured.

Humphrey said the airport was forced to divert four flights and delayed a number of others.

It took crews about an hour and a half to dig out the jet before the runway was reopened.

The jet was undamaged, and there were no injuries.

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Today in History

ARFF Working Group - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 07:44

33 Years ago today: On 19 February 1985 an Iberia Boeing 727 crashed into a mountain near Bilbao, Spain; all 148 on board were killed.

Date: Tuesday 19 February 1985 Time: 09:27 Type: Boeing 727-256 Operator: Iberia Registration: EC-DDU C/n / msn: 21777/1487 First flight: 1979-05-18 (5 years 9 months) Total airframe hrs: 13408 Cycles: 12347 Engines:Pratt & Whitney JT8D-9A Crew: Fatalities: 7 / Occupants: 7 Passengers: Fatalities: 141 / Occupants: 141 Total: Fatalities: 148 / Occupants: 148 Airplane damage: Destroyed Airplane fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair) Location: 30 km (18.8 mls) SE of Bilbao Airport (BIO) (   Spain) Crash site elevation: 1023 m (3356 feet) amsl Phase: En route (ENR) Nature: Domestic Scheduled Passenger Departure airport: Madrid-Barajas Airport (MAD/LEMD), Spain Destination airport: Bilbao Airport (BIO/LEBB), Spain Flightnumber: IB610

Iberia Flight 610 departed Madrid at 08:47 for a scheduled flight to Bilbao, where it was scheduled to land at 09:35. The Boeing 727, named “Alhambra de Granada”, climbed to the cruising altitude of FL260. At 09:09 the crew were instructed to descend to FL100. Seven minutes later the copilot contacted Bilbao Tower. The controller then cleared the flight for an ILS approach: “Iberia 610, you can continue descent, for an ILS approach to Bilbao, runway 30, wind is 100 degrees 3 knots, QNH 1025 and transition level 70.” This was confirmed by the crew. The controller subsequently offered them a direct clearance to the approach fix, which is located at 13 DME from the airport. The captain declined and decided to fly the standard approach procedure.
At 09:22 flight 610 reported over the Bilbao VOR at 7000 feet, starting the standard approach procedure. The airplane further descended to 5000 feet, which it reached three minutes later. The crew switched the Altitude Alert System to 4300 ft (the minimum sector altitude is 4354 feet) and continued the descent. The altitude alert horn sounds 900 feet prior to reaching the preset altitude (approach mode) and 300 feet below that altitude (deviation mode). Since the flight had 700 feet to go, the horn would only sound at around 4000 feet. Since the crew descended below the minimum sector altitude, the altitude alert horn sounded at 4040 feet. The crew interpreted this being the approach mode alert, and continued their descent. Fifty-seven seconds after passing through the minimum sector altitude, the airplane struck the base of a structure of antennas located close to the top of Mount Oiz (3356 feet high). The left wing broke off and the remaining fuselage crashed onto the hillside, cutting a swath through the trees.

Probable Cause:

CAUSE: “Their confidence on the automatic capture performed by the Altitude Alert System, the misinterpretation of its warnings, as well as a probable misreading of the altimeter made the crew to fly below the safety altitude, colliding into the television antennas’ base, thus losing the left wing, falling to the ground with no possible control of the aircraft.”

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Today is Friday the 16th of February, 2018

ARFF Working Group - Fri, 02/16/2018 - 07:00

Here are the stories to close out the week…

Two stories of note. One, I received an article from my old union, Chicago Firefighters Union Local 2, yesterday and found it to be of interest, so I’m passing it on to you… Check out “San Diego’s Fire Chief Focuses on Clean Gear, Bodies to Cut Cancer Risk“, the other is about the State of Washington working on a bill that will restrict the sale of AFFF with PFAS. Take a read!

Have a great weekend and be safe out there!


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Washington State progresses Bill to ban PFAS used in AFFF and in personal protective equipment

ARFF Working Group - Fri, 02/16/2018 - 06:56

Published:  13 February, 2018

If the Bill passes both chambers of the legislature, Washington would become the first US state to restrict the sale of fire-fighting foams with PFAS.

Titled, ‘An act relating to reducing the use of certain toxic chemicals in firefighting activities’, State Senate Bill 6413 aims to reduce the use of certain toxic chemicals in firefighting activities.

If the Bill passes its next hearing at the House of Representatives, it will prohibit the sale, manufacture, and distribution of fire-fighting foam that has perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl chemicals (PFAS) intentionally added.

The Bill wants to prohibit the manufacture, sale and distribution of Class B firefighting foam that has PFAS chemical intentionally added, from July 1, 2020. The prohibition does not apply to the sale or use of Class B firefighting foam required by federal law for aircraft rescue and firefighting.

A manufacturer of Class B firefighting foam is required to provide written notice to persons selling the manufacturer’s products no less than one year prior to the prohibition. A manufacturer of Class B fire-fighting foam must recall and reimburse the retailer or any purchaser for the product.

The Bill also requires sellers of fire-fighting personal protective equipment (PPE) containing PFAS, to notify purchasers of the equipment by July 1, 2018, and makes a violation of the act subject to a civil penalty of US$5,000 for a first offense and up to US$10,000 for subsequent violations. The person or manufacturer selling fire-fighting PPE and the purchaser must keep the notice on file for at least three years.

PFAS are a class of man-made chemicals that are not found naturally in the environment. Molecules in all PFAS chemicals contain carbon and fluorine atoms and some also include oxygen, hydrogen, sulfur or nitrogen atoms. PFAS chemical molecules are differentiated from each other by chain length, or the number of carbon atoms, in the molecule.

PFAS chemicals have been widely used to make products stain-resistant, waterproof and non-stick. PFAS chemicals have been used in products that keep food from sticking to cookware; make upholstered furniture, carpets, and clothing resistant to soil, stains, and water; make shoes, clothes and mattresses more waterproof; keep food packaging from sticking to food; and help fight fires at airfields and other places where petroleum-product-based fires are a risk.

According the US Environmental Protection Agency, PFAS chemicals are very persistent in the environment and in the human body.

The Department of Ecology (Ecology) states that the toxicity of PFAS compounds varies. Studies in animals show that exposure to some PFAS can affect liver function, reproductive hormones, development of offspring, and mortality. However, PFAS toxicity in humans is less understood and exposure may be linked to high cholesterol, ulcerative colitis, thyroid disease, testicular cancer, kidney cancer, and pregnancy-induced hypertension.

PFAS-based class B firefighting foams have been used since the 1970s for vapour suppression, firefighting, and firefighting training at airports, refineries, bulk storage terminals and other facilities handling large volumes of flammable liquid petroleum or natural gas. PFAS chemicals are used in fire foam products because of their ability to produce a fast spreading foam. Potential sources of PFAS contamination related to fire-fighting foam use are found in Washington State airports, military sites, fire training centres, where foam has been used to extinguish petroleum fires.

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NTSB Release Preliminary Report On Indiana Accident

ARFF Working Group - Fri, 02/16/2018 - 06:42

Board Employee Was Fatally Injured In The Accident

The NTSB has released a preliminary report from an accident which fatally injured three people, including Paul Schuda, the director of the NTSB’s training center in Ashburn, VA. 

Schuda was a passenger on board the Cessna Cessna T210M airplane, N761YZ, which impacted trees and terrain following a reported loss of engine power near Oldenburg, Indiana. A postimpact fire ensued and the airplane was destroyed. The pilot and another passenger were fatally injured. The airplane was registered to N761YZ LLC and operated by the pilot as a 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. Night visual meteorological conditions prevailed. The flight was operated on an instrument flight rules flight plan and originated from the Columbus Municipal Airport (KBAK), Columbus, Indiana, about 2039. The intended destination was the Frederick Municipal Airport (KFDK), Frederick, Maryland.

The flight initially departed the Charles B Wheeler Downtown Airport (KMKC), Kansas City, Missouri, about 1657, and landed at BAK about 1927. Airport records indicated that an individual associated with N761YZ purchased fuel from the self-service pump at 2032.

Air traffic control (ATC) data indicated that the accident flight departed from runway 23 at BAK. After takeoff, the airplane turned left and proceeded on an easterly course. The controller instructed the pilot to climb and maintain 11,000 feet mean sea level (msl). At 2052:00, the airplane reached an altitude of approximately 7,450 feet msl before it began a gradual descent. At 2052:30, the pilot transmitted “mayday, mayday, mayday.” He informed the controller that they were experiencing a “partial engine failure” and “needed to get down.” The airplane was about 26 miles east of BAK and approximately 4 miles southwest of the Batesville Airport (HLB) at that time. The pilot inquired about diverting to HLB. The controller confirmed that HLB was the closest airport, but also informed the pilot that the airport was listed as closed. The pilot subsequently over flew HLB about 4,000 feet msl, proceeded about 2 miles north, and executed a right 270-degree turn to a west heading. The final radar data point was recorded at 2057:28 and located about 1.5 miles northeast of the HLB runway 18 approach threshold. The altitude associated with the final data point was 1,050 feet msl.

The accident site was located in a wooded ravine about 0.65 mile northwest of the final radar data point, and about 1.44 miles north of the HLB runway 18 approach threshold, at an approximate elevation of 855 feet. The main wreckage came to rest about 202 feet northeast (316 degrees) from the initial tree strike. The main wreckage consisted of the fuselage, engine and right wing. The right-wing tip was separated and located in a tree about 35 feet above ground level near the initial tree strike. Fragments from the right aileron and right-wing flap were located on the ground near the initial tree strike. The left wing was separated and located about 60 feet from the main wreckage. The empennage and propeller were separated and located adjacent to each other, about 41 feet from the main wreckage.

The fuselage and right wing were damaged by the postimpact fire. The left wing and empennage exhibited sooting due to the fire. The right-wing tip, right aileron, and right flap fragments did not exhibit any fire damage or sooting. All flight control surfaces were present at the accident site. No anomalies with respect to a preimpact malfunction of the flight control system were observed. The engine remained attached to the firewall and the aft portion of the engine sustained fire damage. The propeller had separated at the engine crankshaft flange. A teardown examination of the engine revealed damage to the No. 4 cylinder and piston. Those components have been sent to the NTSB materials laboratory for further examination.

Federal Aviation Administration Notices to Airmen (NOTAM) data indicated that HLB was closed from December 6, 2017, until March 5, 2018. A representative of the airport reported that, because the airport was closed, no runway lighting was available.

(Source: NTSB. Image provided by the Indiana State Police)


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NTSB Docket Reveals Details About Teterboro Learjet Accident

ARFF Working Group - Fri, 02/16/2018 - 06:40

Co-Pilot Who Was Flying The Aircraft Lacked Required Experience, Board Says

The accident docket released last week by the NTSB about an accident involving a Learjet 35 which went down on approach at Teterboro airport last May shows that the co-pilot flying the aircraft was not qualified to act as pilot-in-command.

The report indicates that co-pilot Jeffrey Alino had not accumulated enough hours flying the Learjet 35A, and had not scored well during simulator training, before being hired in 2016 by Trans-Pacific Air Charter, according to a report from

The NTSB determined that Alino had flown most of the leg from Philadelphia to Teterboro, but gave the airplane back to pilot William Ramsey seconds before the airplane stalled and impacted terrain in Carlsdtadt, NJ. The cockpit voice recorded captured audio indicating that Williams struggled to regain control of the aircraft, and that the two pilots recognized the stall but were unable to recover.

Both Williams and Alino were fatally injured in the accident. There were no passengers on board the aircraft.

FMI: Original report

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An Example of a Fire Department that really cares: San Diego’s Fire Chief Focuses on Clean Gear, Bodies to Cut Cancer Risk

ARFF Working Group - Fri, 02/16/2018 - 06:39


Feb. 05–Long before he became San Diego’s fire chief, Brian Fennessy would wear his crusty, soot-covered helmet like a badge, proof he worked at one of the city’s busiest fire stations. He thought it gave him credibility and earned him the respect of peers.

Now he knows his dirty gear harbored the toxins and carcinogens that haunt the scene of a fire — and that they might well revisit him in the future as cancer.

“I figure that’s what’s going to get me,” said Fennessy, who has been a firefighter since 1978. “When I worked for the Forest Service, man, we sprayed fuel breaks with chemicals that aren’t even allowed anymore. We inhaled that stuff; we were exposed to all kinds of bad stuff.

“I figure it is just a matter of time before I’m diagnosed.”

At many fire departments around the country, chiefs like Fennessy are working to change the culture of the fire service, encouraging firefighters to take steps to better protect themselves from dangerous fumes, smoke and soot.

Cancer is the leading cause of firefighter line-of-duty deaths in the U.S., according to the International Association of Fire Fighters. In the past five years, more than 60 percent of the names added to the Fallen Fire Fighter Memorial Wall in Colorado were cancer-related deaths, the organization says. The wall lists the names of more than 7,600 fallen firefighters.

Several studies looking at the association between firefighting and cancer have found higher rates of some types of cancers in firefighters compared with the general population, including cancers involving the respiratory, digestive and urinary systems.

The largest cancer study of U.S. firefighters to date, done by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, looked at the health records of 30,000 firefighters in three U.S. cities between 1950 and 2009. It found those firefighters had a modest increase in cancer diagnoses (a 9 percent increase) and cancer-related deaths (a 14 percent increase) compared with the general population.

Such research — along with repeatedly hearing of colleagues in the fire service being diagnosed with cancer –he called it a “drumbeat” of calls — prompted Fennessy to green-light his department’s cancer-prevention program just a few months after he was appointed San Diego’s chief in 2015.

In the 18 months since the effort began, program manager Kurtis Bennett said about a dozen employees have been diagnosed with cancer.

Fire officials say they want to see a “paradigm shift,” where firefighters will speak up if a colleague shows up wearing dirty gear.

“It’s not going to be the roof caving in on you, or falling off the ladder — that’s not going to be what kills you,” Fennessy said. “It is going to be cancer.”

Concerns about health risks aren’t new

Firefighters have long worried about how their jobs were affecting their health, although much of the early focus was on lung cancer and other respiratory ailments caused by breathing in smoke.

The dangers of soot were known way back in 1775 when it was linked to the first case of occupational cancer. A doctor noticed chimney sweeps in Britain were being stricken by a particular form of the disease.

In 1982, California became the first state in the country to adopt a presumptive law that makes it easier for firefighters to prove that their cancer is work-related, giving them access to workers’ compensation and survivor benefits for their families.

That law was prompted by the deaths in 1973 of two Whittier firefighters who responded to a hazmat incident and died of a rare form of cancer within weeks of each other six years later, said Carroll Wills of the California Professional Firefighters union.

Cancer awareness has become a priority for many firefighting agencies, addressed at professional conferences and by industry groups. A bill has twice been introduced in Congress that would create a voluntary national firefighter cancer registry, which officials say would track those diagnosed with the disease and assist future research efforts.

In 2013, the nonprofit Firefighter Cancer Support Network published an industry white paper, calling firefighter cancer “a looming personal catastrophe for each and every firefighter.” The group, which provides mentoring and assistance to firefighters who are diagnosed, declared cancer the most dangerous and unrecognized threat to the health and safety of the country’s firefighters.

The group offered tips to minimize exposure to cancer-causing substances; all of the suggestions were incorporated in San Diego’s cancer awareness and prevention program.

San Diego’s training kicks off with an emotional 8 1/2 -minute video that shares the stories of a dozen firefighters who have been diagnosed and treated for cancer. Bennett, who has trained all 900 of the department’s firefighters, said the room always gets quiet after the group watches the video.

In his sessions, Bennett warns firefighters that they can be exposed to a lifetime of toxins in a very compressed period of time, inhaling them or absorbing them into their skin.

“The key to reducing the incidence of cancer is changing our culture and changing what a professional firefighter looks like,” Bennett said. “For years, we esteemed the ‘smoke-eater’ look of soot-covered faces. That was, to some degree, killing us.”

San Diego’s fire stations are gradually being equipped with commercial-grade washing machines that can better clean dirty turnouts; they long have had equipment that vents diesel exhaust from firetrucks out of the buildings. Special wipes kept on engines allow firefighters in the field to clean their heads, necks, throats, underarms and hands before they get back to the station to shower.

Firefighters are issued two sets of protective pants and jackets so they always have access to clean ones. They are supposed to take off dirty gear as soon as possible and keep it away from where they sleep and out of personal vehicles.

Everyone has two protective hoods and captains carry spares so firefighters can change them out when they get wet or dirty.

Some departments are pursuing other methods in their quest to protect firefighters.

The Carlsbad Fire Department is outfitting four of its six stations with dry saunas and bicycles, known as chemical detox saunas. It is the second agency in California to purchase the units, said Mary Murphy, who manages emergency medical services for the department.

After a fire, Carlsbad’s firefighters will take a shower and then ride the bikes until they work up a good sweat. The idea is they’ll sweat heavy metals and other toxins out of their skin.

One firefighter who put a towel under the bike when he rode it after a fire told Murphy: “Whatever it was that came out of me was black and it was on the towel.”

Veteran firefighter Todd Bechtel, a captain in the Ocean Beach station, said he’s seeing younger colleagues embracing the safety recommendations as they go about their days. After a recent fire, everyone in his station grabbed clean turnouts before the next call.

“It’s a great program,” he said. “I believe in it. I follow it.”

Bechtel, a firefighter for 26 years, was diagnosed with prostate cancer a few years ago after a routine checkup. He underwent surgery and radiation, but recently learned his cancer has returned.

Like others, he would sleep with his pants next to his bunk, take off his mask as soon as flames were knocked down and wear his flash hood over and over without washing it. He wonders if the interrupted sleep cycles typical in a busy station and other stresses also played a role.

“When the question is asked of me, do I think it was work related, with all the stuff put in front of me, I can’t see how it wasn’t work related,” he said. “But you never know.”

Despite his concerns, for his part Fennessy said he wouldn’t discourage any of his three children if they wanted to become firefighters. But, he said, he would want them to be careful about which department they chose to work for.

“”Shame on the departments that aren’t paying attention to what’s going on in our business, in our profession right now,” he said. “I’d want my kids to be part of an organization that made taking care of their firefighters a priority.”

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Today in History

ARFF Working Group - Fri, 02/16/2018 - 06:38

20 Years ago today: On 16 February 1998 a China Airlines Airbus A300 crashed while approaching Taipei, Taiwan, killing all 196 occupants and 7 on the ground.

Date: Monday 16 February 1998 Time: 20:05 Type: Airbus A300B4-622R Operator: China Airlines Registration: B-1814 C/n / msn: 578 First flight: 1990-10-16 (7 years 4 months) Total airframe hrs: 20193 Cycles: 8800 Engines:Pratt & Whitney PW4158 Crew: Fatalities: 14 / Occupants: 14 Passengers: Fatalities: 182 / Occupants: 182 Total: Fatalities: 196 / Occupants: 196 Ground casualties: Fatalities: 7 Airplane damage: Destroyed Airplane fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair) Location: Taipei-Chiang Kai Shek International Airport (TPE) (   Taiwan) Crash site elevation: 33 m (108 feet) amsl Phase: Approach (APR) Nature: International Scheduled Passenger Departure airport: Denpasar-Ngurah Rai Bali International Airport (DPS/WADD), Indonesia Destination airport: Taipei-Chiang Kai Shek International Airport (TPE/RCTP), Taiwan Flightnumber: CI676

China Airlines flight 676 was destroyed when it stalled and impacted a residential area of Taipei during an attempted go around at Chiang Kai Shek Airport. All 196 on board and seven persons on the ground were killed.
The aircraft, an Airbus A300B4-622R, originated from Denpasar Airport, Indonesia and was bound for Taipei. The flight was cleared for an ILS/DME runway 05L approach to Taipei Chiang Kai Shek Airport in light rain and fog. The aircraft remained high on the approach. At 1,2nm short of the threshold, the altitude was 1515 feet, whereas it should have been at 500 feet at that point.
The flight crew selected full flaps. At 20:04:50 hours local time the autopilot was disconnected. Subsequently, as the aircraft crossed the runway threshold at 1475 feet, go around thrust was applied.
The aircraft rapidly pitched up, reaching +35° as it climbed trough 1723 feet at an airspeed of 134 knots. The gear had just been raised and the flaps set to 20 degrees.
At 20:05:16 the aircraft had reached 2327 feet at a +42.7° pitch. Nine seconds later the speed had fallen to 43 knots as the aircraft stalled. The aircraft nosed down with a 79° left bank. The flight crew was not able to regain control and the aircraft impacted the ground left of the runway. It hit a utility pole and a highway median and then skidded into several houses, surrounded by fish farms, rice paddies, factories and warehouses. A fire erupted.
Visibility at the time of the accident was 2400 feet, the runway 05L RVR (runway visual range) was 3900 feet, 300 feet broken ceiling, 3000 feet overcast.

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: “The investigation team determined that the the following factors combination caused the accident:
1. during all the descent and the approach, the aircraft was higher than the normal path;
2. the crew coordination between the captain and the first officer was inadequate.
3. during 12 seconds, the crew did not counteract the pitch up tendency due to the thrust increase after go around, and then the reaction of the crew was not sufficient.
As a consequence the pitch up increased until the aircraft stalled.”

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Pilot uninjured after small plane crashes during landing at Billy Bishop Airport

ARFF Working Group - Thu, 02/15/2018 - 09:27

A pilot escaped uninjured after a small plane crashed while attempting to land on a runway at Billy Bishop Airport on Wednesday afternoon.

According to a spokesperson from the airport, the incident, which took place at around 3 p.m., involved a small-engine aircraft with only a pilot aboard. 

The spokesperson said the plane’s nose gear collapsed while the pilot was trying to land on a runway, causing a crash-landing.

Toronto police, who were also called to the scene, reported that the pilot made it out of the aircraft without injuries and was seen walking around. Paramedics did not transport the pilot to hospital.

“Billy Bishop Airport fire responded as a precaution but there was no fire and no injuries,” spokesperson Jen Brailsford said. “Billy Bishop Airport crews are currently in the process of removing the aircraft from the runway and cleaning up debris.”

Though the crash did not cause a fire, airport fire crews did respond and used suppressing foam around the front of the aircraft.

The main runway at the airport was temporarily closed to allow for an investigation. It reopened shortly before 5 p.m.

The Transportation Safety Board has attended the scene and released it.

While Brailsford initially said they don’t expect the closure to cause “any prolonged delays” to commercial flights, Billy Bishop Airport later tweeted that some delays are still possible while the airport gets “back on schedule.”

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No one hurt as WestJet diverts flight in B.C., due to fire warning light

ARFF Working Group - Thu, 02/15/2018 - 09:25

PRINCE GEORGE, B.C. — Passengers aboard a scheduled WestJet Encore flight from Fort St. John, B.C., to Vancouver had an unexpected stopover when their plane was diverted to Prince George.

WestJet says in a statement that flight 3205 had taken off from North Peace Regional Airport Wednesday morning for a flight to Vancouver when a fire detection warning light activated.

As a precaution the pilots declared an emergency and the Bombardier Q400 turboprop, carrying 44 passengers and 4 crew, landed without incident in Prince George.

Everyone aboard got out safely and all the luggage was removed from the plane.

WestJet says a preliminary inspection of the aircraft revealed no sign of fire.

The company says another aircraft was brought in from Calgary to take the passengers to their final destination.

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TSB Canada Releases Report On King Air Collision With An Alleged Drone

ARFF Working Group - Thu, 02/15/2018 - 09:22

Recommends Amending The Canadian Aviation Regulations In Response To The Incident

The Transportation Board Canada has released its final report on a collision between a Beechcraft King Air A100 (registration C-GJBV, serial number B 100) operated by Sky Jet M.G. Inc and what the pilots described as a UAV on October 12, 2017.

The King Air was operating as Flight SJ512. It was on an instrument flight rules flight from Rouyn-Noranda Airport (CYUY) (Quebec) to Québec/Jean-Lesage International Airport (CYQB) (Quebec) with 2 pilots and 6 passengers on board. 

As the aircraft approached CYQB, the aircraft was cleared for a visual approach to Runway 24. On final approach, the flight crew said they observed a drone, about the size of a dinner plate, in front of the left wing. The pilot had no time to take evasive action. The impact was unavoidable, and the drone disintegrated.

The collision took place at 1802 EDT at an altitude of 2,500 feet above sea level (ASL) and approximately 7 nautical miles from the midpoint of Runway 24.

At 1804, the crew declared an emergency, then completed the landing without further incident. There were no injuries.

The damage was limited to a dent at the point of impact on the left wing de-icing boot, as well as scratches on the upper surface of the left wing. The damage was minor and had no effect on the airworthiness of the aircraft. The aircraft was returned to service the same day.

The investigation was unable to identify the operator of the drone involved in the collision with the Sky Jet M.G. Inc. aircraft. No debris from the drone could be found, and it could not be determined with certainty whether it was used for recreational or non-recreational purposes.

The CYQB control tower had not been informed of any UAV activity in the Class C control zone under its jurisdiction, no SFOC had been issued, and no Notices to Airmen had reported any such activity on 12 October 2017. The presence of a drone within controlled airspace had not been detected by the radar in the CYQB control tower. Because neither TC nor NAV CANADA was aware of this drone operation in the control zone, the investigation concluded that the regulations governing the operation of drones were not followed.

Depending on the type of offence and its severity, a drone operator who contravenes the CARs or Interim Order No. 8 may be subject to an administrative monetary penalty (a fine up to $25,000 Canadian) imposed by TC, and in some cases, may be found guilty of an indictable offence or an offence punishable on summary conviction.

It is easy for any consumer to purchase a drone without being informed of any regulations governing its use; retailers are under no obligation to inform consumers of the regulations in force.

In 2016, TC issued 4381 SFOCs for UAVs, as compared to 66 in 2010. Given this increase in the use of UAVs and in SFOC applications, TC’s administrative system is no longer able to meet the usual 20-day service standard for processing and issuing SFOCs. As a result, there have been negative effects for UAV operators, such as delays to business operations and industry’s ability to plan activities.

TC has proposed amendments to the current regulations governing the operation of drones for both recreational and non-recreational purposes. The recommended changes are described in Part I of the Canada Gazette. The regulatory proposal is primarily aimed at reducing the potential risks that unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) pose to the safety of manned aircraft and to people and property on the ground.

In its rationale for the Regulations Amending the Canadian Aviation Regulations (Unmanned Aircraft Systems), TC stated the following:

“The likelihood of further incidents was further analyzed by Transport Canada and based on Air Occurrence Report (AOR) incidents collected since January 2014. In 2014, there were 41 incidents of non-compliance reported. In 2015, the number of reported incidents more than doubled to 86, and a total of 148 incidents near aerodromes were reported in 2016. A few of the reports include flights near people or vehicles, but the existing AOR system tends to rely on pilot and air traffic controller reports, therefore incidents near people, vehicles, or property on the ground tend to be underrepresented in the data.”

In this incident, there were no injuries and only minor damage to the aircraft. However, the use of drones near an aerodrome or within controlled airspace poses a serious risk to aviation safety. For this reason, all recreational and non-recreational drone users must be knowledgeable about and comply with the regulations, including the requirement to operate within line of sight. Users must also familiarize themselves with the different classes of airspace to ensure they comply with the regulations and avoid conflicts with aircraft. In addition, it is important for the public to notify TC when observing the use of a drone near an aerodrome so that TC can take appropriate action.

(Source: Transportation Safety Board Canada. Images provided)


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AIB Impounds Delta Aircraft as 5 Injured in Emergency Landing in MMA

ARFF Working Group - Thu, 02/15/2018 - 09:20

Chinedu Eze

The Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) has grounded the US-bound Delta Airline aircraft that made an emergency landing at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMA), Ikeja, Lagos on Tuesday night.
The Commissioner of AIB, Mr. Akin Olateru, said the Bureau took the step because the Airline failed to report the incident, in which five persons were injured, 17 hours after it occurred.

“Consequently, the Bureau has impounded the aircraft and insisted that it must not be accessed to avoid contamination before investigation,” he said.

The Bureau also directed the crew not to travel until they are interviewed by the agency.
Olateru made this known while briefing aviation correspondents at the agency’s headquarter at the MMIA, Lagos on the latest on the incident involving the Delta Airline.

He said: “As you are aware, AIB is an agency of government that investigates accidents and serious incidents. The agency was established by an enabling Act of 2006, and all we do here is in accordance with our regulation which takes a cue from the ICAO Annexe 13. Everything we do here is in accordance with ICAO Annexe 13. Unfortunately, up until 3:00 pm, this afternoon, Delta as an airline has refused to notify AIB in accordance with the law of our country.

“But they notified the US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) but they refused as at 3pm today, there is still no notification from Delta as to this serious incident. We have an obligation to notify the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) on this serious incident but unfortunately, we cannot fulfil that obligation because we are still waiting for Delta to give us information as to this serious incident. This is a serious incident and by law we are investigating.” He explained that because the serious incident happened in Nigeria, it is the country of occurrence and it has a significant role to play in the investigation.

He regretted that instead of Delta reporting the mishap to Nigeria, it first reported it to NTSB.
According to him: “But in this case, we are able and equipped to investigate this serious incident and we will investigate it. But for the sake of clarity, I am disappointed in Delta. It is totally unacceptable, and we condemn it in its totality and I believe the way I see it we are being undermined, which is not acceptable.

“ICAO law governs all the activities of air transport business. They know that we must be notified. Our websites are there; they can download the form, they can download the App. We wrote to Delta October last year notifying them that we have AIB App, which they just need to download on their phone and send us notification.”

Throwing more light on the major incident, the Director General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Captain Muhtar Usman, described the incident as very serious one after inspecting the damage and noted that the cause of the serious incident would be known after investigations have been carried out.

Usman said: “I have been at the site and from what we saw it is a serious incident and by ICAO standards and also in line with the NCAA Act that sets up the AIB, they will be investigating the serious incident to determine the cause and also make safety recommendations to prevent such from happening again.

“One of the engines of the aircraft was reportedly on fire, the captain requested or declared what we call May Day, which was an emergency that he wanted to come back citing one of the engines was on fire, requesting for emergency services and all the agencies that were required to be there were there for that aircraft to ensure that everything went smoothly.

“The aircraft landed safely, there was precautionary evacuation of passengers, however, details of the cause and recommendation will come from the AIB.”

The Delta Air Lines Flight DL055, which departed MMIA about 10.45 pm on Tuesday night made an air return to Lagos barely 31 minutes into the 11 hours flight, following a breakdown of one of the two engines mid-air.

Five of the over 100 passengers, who were on-board the Airbus A330-200 aircraft with registration number N858NW, were injured.

It was gathered that the injured passengers and crew members were rushed to the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), Ikeja; Air Force Base Clinic; and FAAN Medical Centre for speedy medical attention while the aircraft blocked access to the runway for about an hour before being pushed back to allow departure and landing of other aircraft.

A report received from the Consumer Protection Directorate (CPD) of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) indicated that the flight departed at 22:45, but made an emergency landing at 23:16, which was 31 minutes after departure.

The report said that the pilot-in-command (PIC) announced the evacuation of all the passengers on board within 90 seconds, after contacting the control towers because the left engine of the aircraft caught fire mid-air in-flight.

The CPD report stated that passengers were evacuated via the emergency sliding doors within few seconds while all airport agencies’ officials on duty were on the ground within few minutes that the emergency alarm was announced.

Some of the agencies on ground included the Aviation Security (AVSEC), NCAA, Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) Fire Service, Port Health and Aviation Clinic.

Others were officials of Quarantine, the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) and several others who rendered assistance to the passengers and the crew members.

The report added: “Although, there is no death recorded as at the time of filing this report, but quite a number of crew and passenger casualties were recorded and have been taken to Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH) at Ikeja, Air Force Base Clinic and FAAN Medical Centre for speedy medical attention.

“Meanwhile, the Delta aircraft was on the runway for over an hour, which led to its closure before KLM, Lufthansa and Air France could depart afterwards. The aircraft was later towed with a push back truck to the open parking bay close to boarding gate E 63.

“However the remaining casualty-free passengers were later taken to a hotel after the flight was announced cancelled and rescheduled for a date yet to be specified and communicated.”
Delta in its statement noted that the flight landed safely and customers exited the aircraft on the runway via emergency slides.

It said that airport fire authorities met the aircraft upon arrival while the passengers were bussed back to the terminal.

It said: “Five of the passengers had non-critical injuries as a result of the evacuation. Delta teams have provided overnight hotel accommodations to customers and will rebook customers on an alternate Delta aircraft Wednesday (yesterday) afternoon. The safety of Delta’s customers and crew members is always our top priority.”

Both NCAA and the Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) have swung into action to find out what caused the incident and would make their reports known to the public as quickly as possible, sources from the agencies said.
The passengers of the ill-fated flight were billed to fly out with another airline on Wednesday night.

AIB Impounds Delta Aircraft as 5 Injured in Emergency Landing in MMA

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Today in History

ARFF Working Group - Thu, 02/15/2018 - 09:18

57 Years ago today: On 15 February 1961 a Sabena Boeing 707 lost control and crashed on approach to Brussels, Belgium, killing all 72 occupants and one on the ground.

Date: Wednesday 15 February 1961 Time: 09:05 UTC Type: Boeing 707-329 Operator: Sabena Registration: OO-SJB C/n / msn: 17624/92 First flight: 1959 Total airframe hrs: 3038 Engines:Pratt & Whitney JT4A Crew: Fatalities: 11 / Occupants: 11 Passengers: Fatalities: 61 / Occupants: 61 Total: Fatalities: 72 / Occupants: 72 Ground casualties: Fatalities: 1 Airplane damage: Destroyed Airplane fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair) Location: 3 km (1.9 mls) NE of Brussel-Zaventem Airport (BRU) (   Belgium) Phase: Approach (APR) Nature: International Scheduled Passenger Departure airport: New York-Idlewild International Airport, NY (IDL/KIDL), United States of America Destination airport: Brussel-Zaventem Airport (BRU/EBBR), Belgium Flightnumber: SN548

Sabena flight SN548 was a transatlantic service from New York to Brussels. The Boeing 707 was on a long approach to runway 20 when, near the runway threshold and at a height of 900 feet, power was increased and the gear retracted. The plane made three 360 degrees turns to the left and climbed to 1500 feet. During these turns the bank angle increased more and more until the aircraft was in a near vertical bank. The wings then leveled, followed by an abrupt pitch up. The 707 lost speed, started to spiral rapidly towards the ground nose down, crashed and caught fire.

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: “Having carried out all possible reasonable investigations, the Commission concluded that the cause of the accident had to be looked for in the material failure of the flying controls.
However, while it was possible to advance certain hypotheses regarding the possible causes, they could not be considered entirely satisfactory. Only the material failure of two systems could lead to a complete explanation, but left the way open to an arbitrary choice because there was not sufficient evidence to corroborate it.”
The FAA commented that the most plausible hypothesis was a malfunction of the stabilizer adjusting mechanism permitting the stabilizer to run to the 10.5deg nose-up position.

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Today is Wednesday the 14th of February, 2018

ARFF Working Group - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 09:22

Here are the stories for today…

Don’t forget your significant other today, it’s Valentine’s Day.

Be safe out there!


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Passengers braced for crash before ‘terrifying’ emergency landing

ARFF Working Group - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 09:20

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) –

Passengers on board a flight from San Francisco to Honolulu got quite a scare Tuesday when an engine covering apparently came off mid-flight. 

United Airlines flight 1175 was met with fire trucks when it made an emergency landing at Honolulu’s airport about 1:02 p.m.

The plane was able to land safely and there were no reports of injuries.

But passengers said there were some tense moments after the engine problem, which happened about 40 minutes before the plane was due to land.

“There was a loud bang … and then the plane really started shaking,” said passenger Allison Sudiacal. “It was like rattling and the plane was kind of shaking like boom, boom, boom.”

The good news: Sudiacal said despite the scary moments mid-air, the plane landed fairly smoothly.

“They kept us informed,” said Sudiacal, who was traveling with her husband, 4-month-old son and parents-in-law.

“They let us know that we had to brace for impact in case there was a rough landing. It was scary. But they did a really good job.”

Sudiacal’s husband, Tim, called the flight “absolutely terrifying.”

He said he couldn’t see the problem engine — engine no. 2 — from where he was sitting.

“I think sometimes ignorance is bliss,” he quipped.

Video posted online also showed the moments before the landing: Passengers chanted “Brace! Brace! Brace” as they neared the runway, then cheered when the plane landed without incident. 

It wasn’t immediately clear what went wrong, but photos appear to show the plane with a missing engine cowling, or covering.

In a statement, United Airlines said its pilots “followed all necessary protocols to safely land the aircraft,” which had 363 passengers and 10 crew members on board.

The airline also said it is cooperating with NTSB and FAA investigations of the incident.

Audio of the pilot’s discussions with air traffic control in Honolulu illustrate the tense moments just before landing.

Pilot: “If you haven’t already, roll the fire trucks.”
Air traffic control: “They will be standing by.”

In a statement, the state Transportation Department said the United flight landed safely with Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting personnel standing by as a precaution. The plane has been taken to a hangar, the department said, and the incident didn’t spur any delays at the airport.

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5 injured after Delta flight from Nigeria to Atlanta forced to turn back due to engine issues

ARFF Working Group - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 09:17

Passengers had to use the emergency slides to exit the plane onto the runway.

Author: Adrianne Haney

ATLANTA — Delta officials confirm an Atlanta-bound flight from Lagos, Nigeria was forced to turn back Tuesday after the plane experienced engine issues.

According to Delta, flight 55 from Murtala Mohammed Internationl Airport in Lagos took off from the airport around 10:50 p.m. Nigeria time. Flight tracking website FlightAware indicates the flight had only been in the air for a little less than an hour and a half, and had only traveled 29 of its roughly 5,800-mile journey, before one of the A330-200’s two engines reported issues.

Delta said the flight landed safely shortly after midnight, but passengers had to use the emergency slides to exit the plane onto the runway. Airport fire crews met the plane on arrival, and passengers were bussed back to the terminal.

At this time, Delta said it is aware of five customers who reported non-critical injuries during the evacuation. The company said it’s now focused on trying to find overnight hotel accommodations for customers, and will likely rebook them on a Wednesday afternoon flight.

“The safety of Delta’s customers and crew members is always our top priority,” the company concluded.

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Heathrow Airport ‘serious’ crash kills worker, forces plane to evacuate

ARFF Working Group - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 09:16

By Geoff Herbert

A “serious” crash at Heathrow Airport has left one worker dead and caused delays for hundreds of passengers.

The Telegraph reports two vehicles collided on the airfield early Wednesday morning at the London international airport’s Terminal 5. Emergency teams rushed to the scene to treat two seriously injured workers.

Officials said one of the workers, a man in his 40s, died at a West London hospital. He is not being identified until family is notified.

The other worker sustained a broken shoulder, but Scotland Yard said his injuries are not believed to be life-threatening.

“Our deepest condolences go to the family and friends affected by this accident. We will be fully cooperating with the police in the investigation which will follow,” a Heathrow spokesperson told the BBC.

The BBC reports passengers on one plane were forced to evacuate after the crash. Another 20 British Airways flights were delayed, affecting hundreds of travelers.

“The gate was surrounded by various airport service vehicles including two fire engines. There were blue lights everywhere,” one passenger wrote on social media.

Additional details have not been released, though a spokesperson said The Health and Safety Executive has been informed and officers from the Met’s Serious Collision Investigation Unit are investigating.

The airfield remains open. Heathrow Airport representatives said additional delays are not expected.

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Today in History

ARFF Working Group - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 09:14

28 Years ago today: On 14 February 1990 an Indian Airlines Airbus 320 crashed while approaching Bangalore, India, killing 92 out of 146 occupants.

Date: Wednesday 14 February 1990 Time: 13:03 Type: Airbus A320-231 Operator: Indian Airlines Registration: VT-EPN C/n / msn: 079 First flight: 1989 Engines:IAE V2500-A1 Crew: Fatalities: 4 / Occupants: 7 Passengers: Fatalities: 88 / Occupants: 139 Total: Fatalities: 92 / Occupants: 146 Airplane damage: Destroyed Airplane fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair) Location: 0,7 km (0.4 mls) W of Bangalore-Hindustan Airport (BLR) (   India) Phase: Approach (APR) Nature: Domestic Scheduled Passenger Departure airport: Mumbai (Bombay) Airport (BOM/VABB), India Destination airport: Bangalore-Hindustan Airport (BLR/VOBG), India Flightnumber: 605

Flight IC605 took off from Mumbai (Bombay) at 11:58 for a flight to Bangalore (BLR). At 12:25 Bangalore approach was contacted and prevailing weather at Bangalore was passed on to the crew (wind variable 5 knots, visibility 10 km, clouds 2 octa 2000 feet, temp 27deg, QNH 1018). At 12:44 the aircraft was cleared to descend to FL110. Reaching FL110, vectors were given for a visual runway 09 approach. On final approach, the aircraft descended well below the normal approach profile and kept descending until it struck the boundaries of the Karnataka Golf Club (2300 feet short of the runway and 200 feet right of the extended centerline. The aircraft rolled for 80 feet and lifted off again for about 230 feet and came down again on the 17th green of the golf course. The landing gear wheels dug into the ground and the aircraft impacted a 12 feet high embankment, causing the gears and engines to be sheared off. The aircraft continued over the embankment and came to rest in a grassy, marshy and rocky area.

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: “Failure of the pilots to realize the gravity of the situation and respond immediately towards proper action of moving the throttles, even after the radio altitude call-outs of “Four hundred”, “Three hundred” and “Two hundred” feet, in spite of knowing that the plane was in idle/open descent mode. However, identification of the cause for the engagement of idle/open descent mode in short final approach during the crucial period of the flight is not possible.”

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