ARFF (Airport Rescue and Fire Fighting)

Today is Monday the 17th of December, 2018

ARFF Working Group - Mon, 12/17/2018 - 06:04

We start the new week with the following stories…

The first article is a great piece by Joe Fitzgerald of the Boston Globe, take a moment to read it!

Be safe out there!


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Firefighters always answer that call

ARFF Working Group - Mon, 12/17/2018 - 05:59

By JOE FITZGERALD – Boston Herald

It was just a throwaway line in a forgotten movie, “Osage County,” but Julia Roberts, playing an exasperated mom trying to reason with her difficult daughter, said a mouthful when she noted, “If we could see the future we would never get out of bed.”

WORCESTER, MA – DECEMBER 14: Firefighters assemble before entering the wake for Christopher Roy at St. John’s Church December 14, 2018 in WORCESTER, Massachusetts. (Staff Photo By Chris Christo/Boston Herald)

When a frantic call came to Ladder 4 in Worcester at 4 a.m. last Sunday, staying in bed was not an option for Christopher Roy, nor would it have been if he could have seen the future, because he knew lives other than his own would be imperiled by what became a five-alarm blaze on Lowell Street.

“A ship in harbor is safe,” Albert Einstein pointed out. “But that is not what ships are built for.”

It’s not what firefighters are built for either.

And so it was that Roy, 36, the doting father of a 9-year-old girl, rushed into the smoke and flames engulfing that multi-family structure where he became trapped, perishing as colleagues tried in vain to rescue him.

So once again this City of Seven Hills, where six firefighters died together in 1999, and another, Jon Davies, answered his final alarm in 2011, has opened its arms to legions of jakes who’ve come from near and far to mourn the heroic passing of one of their own.

This morning’s funeral at St. John’s Church may comfort Roy’s loved ones and honor his profession, but it’ll have something to say to the rest of us, too.

Love has many definitions, but none more poignant than Scripture’s assertion that “greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.”

Did you know Christopher Roy? Me neither.

WORCESTER, MA – DECEMBER 14: Firefighters process into the wake for Christopher Roy at St. John’s Church December 14, 2018 in WORCESTER, Massachusetts. (Staff Photo By Chris Christo/Boston Herald)

We weren’t his friends, yet he’d have responded the same way last Sunday morning if that plea for help had come from you or me.

That’s what firefighters do, but they’re not brave just because they do it; they’re brave because, each time their phone rings, they’re ready and willing to do it, unconditionally.

That movie quote was right. If we knew what awaited us around the corner we’d take a different route. No one leaves home anticipating an encounter with a drunk driver, or a gun-toting barbarian, or a workplace calamity.

Firefighters, however, know risks such as injury or death ride with them every time they race to danger.

Still they go with lights flashing and sirens wailing.

That’s what Christopher Roy did in the pre-dawn hours last Sunday, and it’s why he’s being buried this morning in Worcester.

God bless you, sir.

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Two bodies retrieved from mangled wreck after plane crashes onto mudflats near Raglan

ARFF Working Group - Mon, 12/17/2018 - 05:55

NZ Herald

By: Luke Kirkness Michael Neilson and Belinda Feek

Emergency workers at the scene of a fatal plane crash in Raglan have retrieved two bodies but the mangled wreckage is about to be swamped by the incoming tide. 

Two people died after a light plane crashed onto mudflats on the outskirts of Raglan this afternoon.

Emergency services were called to the incident shortly after 3.20pm following reports the aircraft had crashed into the harbour.

Police Waikato Western area commander Inspector Andrew Mortimore confirmed the two occupants of the plane had died in the crash and their bodies were removed this afternoon.

“Police are working to identify the deceased and notify next-of-kin.

“A number of witnesses have already been spoken to, and police will take statements from others in the coming days.”

The plane was now in the care of the Civil Aviation Authority.

Herald reporter at the scene confirmed two bodies were retrieved just before 6pm. The incoming tide had now surrounded the plane. The wreck would have to remain in situ overnight.

Earlier, firefighters carried stretchers to the crash site before removing the bodies. The stretchers were also used to transport parts of the aircraft’s wreckage back up to a nearby embankment for investigators to examine.

Prior to being completely surrounded by water, forensic staff had to stand on the wings of the plane to examine the wreck.

Several firefighters were now combing the wetland and surrounding grassy area for evidence linked to the crash.

Raglan resident Thomas Malpass said he witnessed the aftermath of the crash.

“It is a pretty grim scene. Some citizens were first on the scene, they managed to get across the farmland, but there was not much they could do. The people in there were obviously deceased.”

Malpass said the plane had crashed into mudflats in the Kaitoke Harbour.

“You can’t see many tyre tracks, I wonder if they planned to land it. The plane looks like it might be half, one of the wings is off.”

A group of trainee pilots saw the plane performing a manoeuvre from the sky before they lost sight of it.

They thought it was a strange manoeuvre to perform at the low altitude it was flying.

They said they didn’t see it crash and weren’t sure what had happened but believed it had somehow lost control.

The group told the Herald they were trainee pilots and the crash had freaked them out “a bit”.

A neighbour said she heard an “almighty crash” before seeing the plane crashed on the mudflats.

Herald reporter at the scene said the wreckage was covered by a tarpaulin and appeared to have crashed at low tide.

She was told by a local who originally thought there was a car crash, his neighbour alerting him to the plane crash.

Together the two local men raced over to the crash to see if they could help but the two occupants had already died.

One of the men said he was unable to describe what sort of plane it was and said it was a “mangled wreck”.

He said it was common to hear planes overhead as it was on a route to the local airport.

Robertson St resident Joy Utting said she was folding washing in her bedroom, overlooking the Kaitoke Estuary, when she heard a hissing noise.

“It sounded like a gas canister, it must have been from the impact hitting the ground.”

She said she ran outside, looking up and down the street before spying the wreckage across from her property. 

“There were these people running over to help … but their body language told what was happening straight away, that it wasn’t good.”

Another Raglan local described hearing “a big bang” and assumed it came from a nearby car crash.

The woman could not see the crash from her property but told the Herald she got a fright from the loud bang.

“I heard a big bang and I got such a fright. I wondered it what it was. It was very scary,” she said.

“I didn’t know it was a plane, it was so quick.”

The woman felt guilty for not going to help but said she didn’t realise it had crashed into the adjacent estuary.

“I saw a car there earlier on the farm but then I suddenly saw an ambulance thought it was that.”

A Fire and Emergency New Zealand spokesman told the Herald earlier that one appliance from Raglan was attending.

He said the crew accessed the aircraft on foot but couldn’t confirm if the plane had crashed into the water or dry land.

Initially, emergency services attended the incident from East St but said access was easier from a property on Main Rd, the Fenz spokesman said.

Fenz crew said earlier they would not be extricating the occupants of the aircraft until police had made their inquiries.

St John spokeswoman Ngaire Jones told the Herald an ambulance was still on scene but any information would have to come from the police.

Police said the Civil Aviation Authority had been notified about the fatal crash.

In 2016, a pilot escaped with minor injuries after a light plane crashed at the Raglan Airfield.

The aircraft crashed on landing and went through a fence, suffering “material damage”.

And another light plane crashed into the water and sunk off Raglan Beach on Boxing Day 2014.

That incident, involving a Piper Cherokee, happened 100m off the beach which was packed with holidaymakers.

Police said it appeared the plane’s engine cut out just after take-off and the pilot ditched the plane in the harbour.

Three people onboard the aircraft were injured during the incident.

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Small plane damaged in Albany airport crash

ARFF Working Group - Mon, 12/17/2018 - 05:52

By Leigh Hornbeck

The plane has three wheels, one under the nose and one under each of the wings. When the plane came to a stop, airport staff righted the plane with a fork lift and then pushed it by hand off the runway, Myers said.

One of the runways was closed until 4:40 p.m., Myers said. There were no diversions or delays of other flights.

The plane is locally owned and carrying a passenger in addition to the pilot. The plane is now housed at the airport. The Federal Aviation Administration will conduct an investigation, Myers said.

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Ultralight aircraft crashes near Shannon Airport on Friday morning

ARFF Working Group - Mon, 12/17/2018 - 05:51

By ADELE UPHAUS-CONNER – The Free Lance-Star

FREDERICKSBURG — Virginia State Police responded to a plane crash Friday morning just outside Shannon Airport.

A private, ultralight craft crashed on federal land just outside the airport, near Slaughter Pen Farm Historic Site, at about 7:45 a.m.

One person, the pilot, received treatment at the scene and was taken to Mary Washington Hospital with serious injuries, state police said. There was no one else on board.

Joe Leffel, who works at Zentech next to the airport, said he was watching the ultralight before he went into work that morning.

“The pilot was taking off and going a hundred feet or so down the runway, then landing again,” Leffel wrote in an email to the Free Lance–Star. “I assume he was practicing his takeoff and landing at short distances to get the feel of the plane.”

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Experimental plane crashes at Willow Run

ARFF Working Group - Mon, 12/17/2018 - 05:49

George Hunter, The Detroit News

A small experimental airplane crashed at Willow Run Airport Friday, injuring the sole passenger, an airport spokeswoman said.

The crash happened about 1:15 p.m., airport spokeswoman Lisa Gass said in an email.

“The owner of an experimental aircraft was conducting a test run at Willow Run Airport,” Gass said. “During testing, the aircraft unexpectedly went airborne and then crashed. The owner of the aircraft was the only person on board.”

Gass said the pilot was transported to the University of Michigan Hospital by paramedics from the Wayne County Airport Authority Fire Department. His condition was unknown.

“I don’t think he expected the plane to go airborne,” Gass said. She added the crash did not impact other traffic at the airport.

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Small plane lands on Doheny State Beach, no one injured

ARFF Working Group - Mon, 12/17/2018 - 05:47


A small plane with two people on board made an emergency landing on Doheny State Beach in Dana Point Saturday, Dec. 15, but no one was injured, authorities said.

Just before 2:15 p.m., Orange County firefighters were dispatched to the 25000 block of Dana Point Harbor Drive where a small plane landed in the sand, Capt. Carlos Huerta said.

The plane had taken off from John Wayne Airport and was about halfway into an hour flight when the 63-year-old pilot lost power, Capt. Tony Bommarito said.

“(He) tried to find a place where no people were,” Bommarito said. “They had a successful landing.”

Federal Aviation Administration records show the plane is a 1969 fixed wing single-engine Cessna 150K.

A 25-year-old male passenger was also uninjured in the emergency landing. No injuries were reported to people on the ground, Huerta said.

Small plane lands on Doheny State Beach, no one injured

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Man injured after plane goes down in Lodi

ARFF Working Group - Mon, 12/17/2018 - 05:46

By NBC15 Staff

COLUMBIA COUNTY, Wis. (WMTV) — A pilot of a single engine plane suffered minor injuries after crashing near Lodi Lakeland Airport on Saturday.

According to the Columbia County Sheriff’s office, the Sonex 393 plane crashed into a field near 1445 Fair St., after striking trees while approaching the airport just after 2:00 p.m.

The 73-year-old male pilot from Dane County was transported to the hospital. The aircraft was heavily damaged.

Officials at the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office believe the plane is privately operated and there are no reports pilot had communication with the Lodi Lakeland Airport.

The cause of the crash is under investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board and Federal Aviation Administration.

The Columbia County Sheriff’s Office was assisted by Lodi Fire and EMS.

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Today in History

ARFF Working Group - Mon, 12/17/2018 - 05:44

21 Years ago today: On 17 December 1997 an AeroSvit Yakovlev 42 crashed near Thessaloniki, Greece; all 70 on board were killed.

Date: Wednesday 17 December 1997 Time: 21:12 Type: Yakovlev Yak-42 Operating for: AeroSvit Airlines Leased from: Lvovskie avialinii Registration: UR-42334 C/n / msn: 4520422606164 First flight: 1986 Total airframe hrs: 12008 Cycles: 6836 Engines:Lotarev D-36 Crew: Fatalities: 8 / Occupants: 8 Passengers: Fatalities: 62 / Occupants: 62 Total: Fatalities: 70 / Occupants: 70 Aircraft damage: Destroyed Aircraft fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair) Location: 72 km (45 mls) SW of Thessaloniki (   Greece) Crash site elevation: 1006 m (3301 feet) amsl Phase: En route (ENR) Nature: International Scheduled Passenger Departure airport: Odessa-Central Airport (ODS/UKOO), Ukraine Destination airport: Thessaloniki International Airport (SKG/LGTS), Greece Flightnumber: 241

AeroSvit Airlines Flight AEW241 was a scheduled service from Kiev, Ukraine to Thessaloniki, Greece with an en route stop at Odessa, Ukraine. The first leg of the flight was operated by a Boeing 737. Because of engine problems, an aircraft change had to be made at Odessa. The last leg of the flight was carried out using a Yakovlev 42 (UR-42334), which was being chartered from Lvovskie avialinii. The flight crew had no previous experience in flying to Thessaloniki.
The flight was dispatched from Odessa with the No 1 VHF/NAV receiver inoperative, which was contrary to the minimum equipment list (MEL), and took off at 17:23 hours UTC.
The weather conditions at Thessaloniki Airport were above required approach and landing minima, however, darkness and an overcast cloud layer obscured awareness of mountainous terrain in the area.
The flight was instructed by the approach controller to conduct the LAMBI1F standard arrival procedure and was cleared to execute a VOR-DME-ILS approach to runway 16.
The aircraft did not follow the “19 DME arc” as required by the approach procedure, but proceeded directly to the THS NDB. It overshot the localizer course at least twice and the flight crew were unable to establish a stabilized approach.
According to the CVR cockpit conversations, the flight crew was confused and uncertain with respect to the navigation aids and the information that was presented.
During the approach there were no standard callouts made by the flight crew related to the glide slope, outer marker or minima. At 18:54 UTC the Thessaloniki Tower controller reported that they had passed the airport. The flight crew was unaware that they overflew the runway until they were informed by the controller.
The flight crew then initiated a go-around but did not follow the published missed approach procedure, nor did they follow the instructions given by the ATC. Although instructed by ATC to proceed to, and enter the south holding pattern, the flight continued on a flight path to the west. The flight crew remained confused, disorganized, and disoriented during the missed approach and the subsequent clearances issued by ATC. They had lost situational and terrain awareness, and they were uncertain with respect to the radio navigation aids and the information that was presented. They also requested “route vectors” and “heading” twice although Thessaloniki Airport was a non-radar facility.
The flight crew occasionally was confused in reading and reporting the correct distances on their DME equipment (miles to kilometers and vice versa) as their instruments displayed distances in kilometers.
The flight crew in their effort to solve the navigational problem, often switched their focus from VOR/DME information to ADF, and vice versa. This, in conjunction with the VHF/NAV receiver malfunction, contributed greatly to the confusion in the cockpit and to the loss of orientation. At 19:12 UTC the GPWS sounded for 4 seconds. At the same time the approach controller radioed: “AEW number one, continue VOR-DME/ILS approach minima, continue and report approaching the outer marker”. The crew replied: “Outer marker will be report`. After a while the approach controller asked: “AEW-241, do you have the field in sight?”. At that time the GPWS sounded again.
Shortly afterwards the aircraft impacted the side of Mount Pente Pigadia at 3300 feet.

The wreckage was found at 10:30 hours, December 20. At the same date a Greek Air Force Lockheed Hercules, which was being used in the search, crashed, killing all 5 on board.
On October 6, 2000 a trial began with two air traffic controllers being accused of many counts of manslaughter and of violating the transportation regulations. They were sentenced to five years imprisonment. In December 2002 a Thessaloniki appeals court reduced the sentences of two air traffic controllers to four years and four months each.

Probable Cause:

1. The failure of the flight crew to adequately plan and execute the approach and missed approach procedure for runway 16 at Makedonia airport.
2. The failure of the flight crew to properly utilize the Makedonia airport radionavigational aids and aircraft radio equipment / instruments and to interpret the information that was presented.
3. The failure of the flight crew to declare an emergency when they lost their orientation following the missed approach, despite numerous cues alerting them for the aforementioned situation.
4. The captain’s failure to achieve maximum performance climb in response to the GPWS alarm signal, 30″ prior to impact.
5. The lack of command presence, cockpit discipline and resource management which resulted in a disorganized, confused and ultimately disfunctional flight crew.
6. The company’s inadequate oversight, over their flight operations, that allowed for and resulted in scheduling one inadequately prepared and marginally qualified flight crew and an aircraft which did not comply with national and international airworthiness regulations (it had not been issued the Type Certificate with the corresponding Amendment for the international flights), to execute a regular passenger flight with No 1 VHF/NAV receiver inoperative.

Contributing Factors:
1. The inadequate training provided to the flight crew for cockpit resource management and international flight operations.
2. The dispatch of the aircraft with No 1 VHF/NAV receiver, inoperative, despite the restrictions provided in M.E.L. (Appendix 28, pages 14, 16).
3. The assignment of a marginally qualified instructor pilot to this specific flight who disrupted and substantially reduced the coordination and effectiveness of the flight crew.
4. The inaccurate display of the symbol (R) on the Jeppesen Sanderson Inc. chart 11-1, for runway 16, from which the flight crew, most probably, have formed the wrong impression that radar service was available in Makedonia airport.
5. The insufficient evaluation by the Approach Control, under the aforementioned circumstances, of the difficulties encountered by the flight crew in following procedures and clearances, which prevented the Controllers to offer any available assistance, by their own initiative, in order to prevent, probably, the accident.

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ARFF Working Group - Fri, 12/14/2018 - 14:47

After four (4) years and a lot of hard work, the NTSB has closed it’s recommendations on Asian 214.  Please take a look at the LETTER from the NTSB

Thank you and congratulations to all who worked tiredlessly on the Task Groups.


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