Iran Air Fokker 100 performs main gear-up landing at Tehran-Mehrabad Airport

Iran Air Fokker 100 performs main gear-up landing at Tehran-Mehrabad Airport

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Blacklisted Avior Airlines passes IATA safety audit

Blacklisted Avior Airlines passes IATA safety audit

Avior Airlines, blacklisted in the European Union, passed the IATA Operational Safety Audit (IOSA).

Avior is a Venezuelan airline. It was founded in 1994 and currently has a fleet of five Boeing 737-200; eight Boeing 737-400; and one Airbus A340-300 aircraft.

On 30 November 2017 Avior was added to the List of air carriers banned in the European Union, stating that, at the time there was “clear evidence of serious safety deficiencies on the part of Avior Airlines.”

The IOSA programme is an evaluation system designed to assess the operational management and control systems of an airline. IOSA uses internationally recognised quality audit principles and is designed to conduct audits in a standardised and consistent manner. It was created in 2003 by IATA.  All IATA members are IOSA registered and must remain registered to maintain IATA membership.

More information:

File photo of ann Avior Boeing 737-200 (by: Maarten Visser / CC:by-sa)

File photo of ann Avior Boeing 737-200 (by: Maarten Visser / CC:by-sa)

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Challenger 300 hits airport vehicle on landing at Subang, Malaysia

Challenger 300 hits airport vehicle on landing at Subang, Malaysia

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List of global aircraft groundings in history

List of global aircraft groundings in history

On March 13, 2019, all Boeing 737 MAX aircraft were temporarily grounded worldwide by relevant authorities and airlines. The MAX was not the first aircraft in aviation history to be grounded globally.

2019: Boeing 737 MAX
First aircraft in service: 2017
Grounding in effect: March 13, 2019 (some airlines and countries on March 11 and 12)
Regulatory action: FAA Emergency Order (other countries took own regulatory actions)
Grounding lifted: —
Reason for grounding: Fatal accidents involving Lion Air 601 and Ethiopian 302

2013: Boeing 787 Dreamliner
First aircraft in service: 2009
Grounding in effect: January 16, 2013
Regulatory action: Emergency AD
Grounding lifted: April 19, 2013
Reason for grounding: Two lithium ion battery failures on January 7 and January 16.

2000: Concorde
First aircraft in service: 1976
Grounding in effect: August 16, 2000
Regulatory action: Withdrawal of the Airworthiness Certificates of all Concordes
Grounding lifted: November 2001
Reason for grounding: Doubts about the fuel tank safety following the crash of Air France flight 4590.

1982: Yakovlev Yak-42
First aircraft in service: 1980
Grounding in effect: 1982
Regulatory action: unknown
Grounding lifted: October 1984
Reason for grounding: Design fault which caused horizontal stabiliser screw jack mechanism to fail on a Yak-42 on June 28, 1982, killing 132.

1979: McDonnell Douglas DC-10
First aircraft in service: 1971
Grounding in effect: June 6, 1979
Regulatory action: Emergency Order, suspending the Type Certificate
Grounding lifted: July 13, 1979
Reason for grounding: Doubt about the engine pylon assembly not meeting certification criteria following the crash of American Airlines flight 191 .

1954: de Havilland Comet
First aircraft in service: 1952
Grounding in effect: 1954
Regulatory action: Airworthiness Certificate was revoked
Grounding lifted: commercial flights resumed in 1958
Reason for grounding: Two in-flight break up accidents involving BOAC Flight 781 and South African Airways Flight 201.

1947: Douglas DC-6
First aircraft in service: 1947
Grounding in effect: November 11, 1947
Regulatory action:  Voluntary grounding by airlines
Grounding lifted: after four months
Reason for grounding: Grounding following a series of inflight fires including the fatal crash of United Airlines Flight 608 on Oct 24, 1947

1946: Lockheed Constellation
First aircraft in service: 1945
Grounding in effect: July 12, 1946
Regulatory action: Government Order
Grounding lifted: August 23, 1946
Reason for grounding: Grounding following fatal in-flight fire accident of TWA Flight 513 on July 11, 1946

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ATSB issues report on Australian aviation wildlife strike occurrences 2008-2017

ATSB issues report on Australian aviation wildlife strike occurrences 2008-2017

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) issued a report on Australian aviation wildlife strike occurrences 2008-2017. 

The ATSB states that, between 2008 and 2017, there were 16,626 confirmed birdstrikes reported to the bureau. The number of reported birdstrikes increased in recent years, with 2017 having the highest on record with 1,921. Despite being a high-frequency occurrence, birdstrikes rarely result in aircraft damage or injuries. Of the 16,626 birdstrikes in this reporting period, 99.8 percent were classified as incidents, while 19 (~0.1 percent) were classified as accidents and another five (~0.03 percent) as serious incidents. Nine birdstrikes, or approximately 0.05 percent of the birdstrikes in the ten years, resulted in minor injuries to pilots or passengers. There were no reported serious injuries or fatalities associated with a birdstrike occurrence in the ten-year period.

Domestic high capacity aircraft were those most often involved in birdstrikes, and the birdstrike rate per aircraft movement for these aircraft was significantly higher than all other categories. Both the number and rate of birdstrikes per 10,000 movements in high capacity operations have increased in the past two years 2016 – 2017. In contrast, the number of birdstrikes in low capacity operations and general aviation has remained relatively consistent in the most recent two years.

The number of birdstrikes involving a bird ingested into an engine in high capacity air transport operations has risen in recent years with about one in ten birdstrikes for turbofan aircraft involving a bird ingested into an engine. Additionally, over the ten-year reporting period, there have been 11 occurrences involving one or more birds ingested into two engines of turbofan-powered aircraft.

The five most commonly struck flying animals in the 2016 to 2017 period were flying foxes, galahs, magpies, and ‘bats’ (many of which were likely to be flying foxes) and plovers.

Compared to birdstrikes, non-flying animal strikes are relatively rare, with 396 animal strikes reported to the ATSB between 2008 and 2017. The most common animals involved were hares, rabbits, kangaroos, wallabies, and foxes. Damaging animal strikes mostly involved kangaroos and wallabies

More information:

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FAA orders the temporary grounding of Boeing 737 MAX aircraft

FAA orders the temporary grounding of Boeing 737 MAX aircraft

The FAA is ordering the temporary grounding of Boeing 737 MAX aircraft operated by U.S. airlines or in U.S. territory.

Worldwide concerns over the observed similarities between two recent fatal Boeing 737 MAX accidents (Lion Air 601 and Ethiopian 302) led several countries and airlines to ground the aircraft on March 11 and March 12, 2019.

The FAA states that it received newly refined ADS-B satellite data on the morning of March 13. On the same day, the FAA was notified of “new information from the wreckage concerning the aircraft’s configuration just after takeoff that.” These pieces of evidence led the FAA to decide to issue an Emergency Order for the temporary grounding of the Boeing 737 MAX.

The grounding will remain in effect pending further investigation, including examination of information from the aircraft’s flight data recorders and cockpit voice recorders.

 

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NTSB: Continuation of unstabilized approach, stall caused Learjet crash near Teterboro

NTSB: Continuation of unstabilized approach, stall caused Learjet crash near Teterboro

 

The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) determined that a pilot’s failure to perform a go-around when the approach became unstable, which resulted in a stall at low altitude, caused the May 15, 2017, crash of a Learjet 35 jet near Teterboro Airport, New Jersey, USA.

After departing controlled flight during a circle-to-land maneuver to the airport, the Learjet 35A crashed into a commercial building and parking lot, about a half mile from the intended runway. Both pilots, the only occupants aboard the aircraft, died in the crash.

In addition to failing to go around when the approach became unstabilized, the crew committed multiple errors, and repeatedly failed to comply with the operator’s standard operating procedures before and throughout the flight.

The NTSB determined the pilot-in-command’s preflight planning was inadequate. His flight plan contained an incompatible altitude for the planned 28-minute flight from Philadelphia to Teterboro. He also failed to secure weather information for the flight leg despite the company’s policy to do so within three hours of the flight.

Throughout the majority of the flight, the second-in-command was the pilot flying the airplane although he did not have the experience necessary to do so according to the company’s standard operating procedures. The pilot-in-command coached him extensively, interfering with his own pilot monitoring duties.

On approach, the crew failed to conduct the required approach briefing or complete any checklist, which would have reduced their workload and provided them with a shared understanding of how the approach should be flown. This resulted in the pilots’ confusion and led to mismanaging the approach and not initiating a circle-to-land maneuver when instructed by air traffic control.

The NTSB report notes that although deficiencies were noted during the pilots’ initial training, the company did not monitor their subsequent performance to identify and correct continued deficiencies. The operator’s lack of safety programs that would have enabled the company to identify and correct patterns of poor performance and procedural noncompliance was a contributing factor in the crash.

Based on the findings in its investigation of the crash, the NTSB issued three new safety recommendations to the Federal Aviation Administration:

  1. Require programs for flight crewmembers with performance deficiencies or failures during training and administer additional oversight and training to correct performance deficiencies;
  2. Develop guidance for Part 135 operators to help them create and implement effective crew resource management training programs;
  3. Review Learjet operators’ manuals to determine whether they contain manufacturer-recommended approach speed wind additives and encourage those operators without that information to add it to their operations documents.

More information:

 

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NTSB update on Atlas Air B767 crash: nose pitched down to about 49° ‘in response to column input’

NTSB update on Atlas Air B767 crash: nose pitched down to about 49° ‘in response to column input’

ADS-B track (source: NTSB)

The NTSB issued an investigation update on the February 23, 2019, crash of Atlas Air flight 3591, a Boeing 767-375BCF that killed all three on board.  The aircraft entered a rapid descent from 6,000 ft and impacted a marshy bay area about 40 miles southeast of George Bush Intercontinental Airport (KIAH), Houston, Texas.

Air traffic control communications and radar data indicated the flight was normal from Miami to the Houston terminal area. About 12:30 pm the pilots contacted the Houston terminal radar approach control (TRACON) arrival controller and reported descending for runway 26L; the airplane was at 17,800 ft with a ground speed 320 knots. At 12:34, the airplane was descending through 13,800 ft, and the controller advised of an area of light to heavy precipitation along the flight route and that they could expect vectors around the weather.

About 12:35, the flight was transferred to the Houston TRACON final controller, and the pilot reported they had received the Houston Automatic Terminal Information System weather broadcast. The controller told the pilots to expect vectors to runway 26L and asked if they wanted to go to the west or north of the weather.

Radar data indicated the airplane continued the descent through 12,000 ft with a ground speed of 290 knots, consistent with the arrival procedure. The pilots responded that they wanted to go to the west of the area of precipitation. The controller advised that to do so, they would need to descend to 3,000 ft expeditiously.

About 12:37, the controller instructed the pilots to turn to a heading of 270°. Radar data indicated the airplane turned, and the automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast (ADS-B) data indicated a selected heading of 270°. The airplane was descending through 8,500 ft at this time.

About 12:38, the controller informed the pilots that they would be past the area of weather in about 18 miles, that they could expect a turn to the north for a base leg to the approach to runway 26L, and that weather was clear west of the precipitation area. The pilots responded, “sounds good” and “ok.” At this time, radar and ADS-B returns indicated the airplane levelled briefly at 6,200 ft and then began a slight climb to 6,300 ft.

Also, about this time, the FDR data indicated that some small vertical accelerations consistent with the airplane entering turbulence. Shortly after, when the airplane’s indicated airspeed was steady about 230 knots, the engines increased to maximum thrust, and the airplane pitch increased to about 4° nose up and then rapidly pitched nose down to about 49° in response to column input. The stall warning (stick shaker) did not activate.

FDR, radar, and ADS-B data indicated that the airplane entered a rapid descent on a heading of 270°, reaching an airspeed of about 430 knots. A security camera video captured the airplane in a steep, generally wings-level attitude until impact with the swamp. FDR data indicated that the airplane gradually pitched up to about 20 degrees nose down during the descent.

 

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Boeing 737 MAX grounded in several countries following Ethiopian crash

Boeing 737 MAX grounded in several countries following Ethiopian crash

Several countries/airlines have grounded the Boeing 737 MAX as a safety precaution in the wake of the fatal accident involving Ethiopian Airlines flight 302, the second loss of the type after the crash of Lion Air flight 610.

Cayman Airways
The airline of the Cayman Islands grounded its Boeing 737 MAX aircraft effective from March 11, 2019, “until more information is received”.

China
On March 11 at 09:00, the Civil Aviation Administration China (CAAC) issued a notice requesting domestic airlines to suspend the commercial operation of the Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft before 18:00 on March 11, 2019 “in line with the management principle of zero tolerance for safety hazards and strict control of safety risks.”

Ethiopian Airlines
The airline issued a statement on March 11 that it had grounded the Boeing 737 MAX fleet until further notice “as extra safety precaution”.

 

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Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737 MAX 8 crashes after takeoff from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737 MAX 8 crashes after takeoff from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

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