Home » ASN News
ATSB: Procedures and training leads to safe landing for unexpected engine failure by birdstrike on A330
3 May 2018

ATSB: Procedures and training leads to safe landing for unexpected engine failure by birdstrike on A330

A birdstrike and engine failure occurrence on an Airbus A330 in Australia demonstrated that preparation, training and proper procedures help flight crews respond to rare and unexpected situations, according to an ATSB investigation report.

On the night of 3 July 2017, AirAsia X flight D7207, an Airbus 330 aircraft, departed Gold Coast Airport, Australia, for a scheduled passenger transport flight to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. On board the aircraft were 14 crew members and 345 passengers.
Shortly after take-off, the flight crew were alerted to an engine stall in the number two engine. At the same time a loud banging noise was heard. In response, the flight crew commenced their engine stall procedures and made a PAN PAN call.

The crew were then alerted to an engine failure and fire in the same engine. The crew commenced their engine failure procedures and upgraded the distress phase to a MAYDAY and requested a diversion to Brisbane Airport. The aircraft was diverted and landed safely. There were no injuries.

The ATSB investigation found the engine failure was the result of a birdstrike by a masked lapwing that had fractured a small piece from the tip of one of the engine’s fan blades. A lapwing is a medium sized bird—weighing between 0.23–0.40 kg.

NTSB opens docket for San Francisco International Airport near taxiway collision incident

The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) opened the public docket as part of its ongoing investigation of the July 7, 2017, Air Canada overflight of a taxiway at San Francisco International Airport.

Air Canada flight 759, an Airbus A320, was cleared to land on runway 28R at San Francisco International Airport, but the aircraft lined up on parallel taxiway C, which had four airplanes on it awaiting takeoff clearance. Air Canada flight 759 descended below 100 feet above the ground and initiated a go-around after overflying the first airplane on taxiway C.

The docket includes factual reports for operations, human performance, air traffic control, aircraft performance, and the flight data recorder. The docket also contains a video that shows the overflight, as well as interview summaries, photographs and other investigative material.
The docket contains only factual information collected by NTSB investigators.

Analysis, findings, recommendations, and probable cause determinations related to the incident will be issued by the NTSB at a later date.

 

Thai Boeing 747-400 descends below MDA over terrain during approach to Haneda Airport

IATA releases 2017 airline safety performance

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) released data for the 2017 safety performance of the commercial airline industry showing continued strong improvements in safety.

  • The all accident rate (measured in accidents per 1 million flights) was 1.08, an improvement over the all accident rate of 1.68 in 2016 and the rate of 2.01 for the previous 5-year period (2012-2016).
  • The 2017 rate for major jet accidents (measured in jet hull losses per 1 million flights) was 0.11, which was the equivalent of one major accident for every 8.7 million flights. This was an improvement over the rate of 0.39 achieved in 2016 and also better than the five-year rate (2012-2016) of 0.33.
  • There were 6 fatal accidents with 19 fatalities among passengers and crew. This compares with an average of 10.8 fatal accidents and approximately 315 fatalities per year in the previous five-year period (2012-2016). In 2016 there were 9 fatal accidents and 202 fatalities.
  • None of the 6 fatal accidents involved a passenger jet. Five involved turboprop aircraft and one involved a cargo jet. The crash of the cargo jet also resulted in the deaths of 35 persons on the ground, as well as the crew of the jet.
  • IATA member airlines experienced zero fatal accidents or hull losses in 2017 with jet or turboprop equipment.

 

More info:

 

Flight Safety Foundation calls for renewed focus on quality for pilot training and proficiency

Flight Safety Foundation (FSF) is urging the global commercial aviation industry to embrace a data-driven approach to pilot training, and says that national civil aviation authorities need to have the flexibility to adopt competency- or evidence-based training methods.

In a position paper, the Foundation says, “It cannot be assumed that critical skills and knowledge will be obtained only through hours in the air.”

Pilot experience, which is an important safety factor, historically has been associated with the number of flight hours accumulated over a pilot’s career. What often is overlooked, however, is the quality of flight time and how it is accumulated, FSF says. Was it in single- or multi-engine aircraft? In visual or instrument conditions? In a structured, professional environment, or in an often less intense, general aviation environment?

In the position paper, the Foundation says the industry has reached a crossroads in determining how pilots need to be selected, hired, trained and mentored for career growth, and that changes need to be made if the industry is to continue its high level of safety in an era of expected rapid growth in many regions of the world.

The Foundation issued several recommendations, including:
• An improved screening process and training for basic non-technical competencies that are usually obtained through experience, such as communication, analysis, problem solving, leadership and decision making;
• A renewed focus on the competency and quality of training providers to ensure training programs are developed and delivered to meet the safety standards of the industry, and so they can produce qualified, competent pilots;
• Training programs that are competency- or evidence-based and not solely hours-based;
• Data-driven training programs that are continually updated, based on pilot task–level performance;
• Ab initio programs with operator sponsorship/support;
• Development and sponsorship of worldwide quality/performance criteria that are universally recognized;
• A partnership with the International Civil Aviation Organization and industry to define rules, recommendations, guidelines and the expected quality and performance required of flight academies; and,
• Programs that place a high value on the knowledge and experience of instructors.

More information:

ATR 72-500 nearly lands on ultralight airstrip instead of Kish Island Airport runway, Iran

EASA publishes the 2018-2022 European Plan for Aviation Safety

The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) published the 2018-2022 European Plan for Aviation Safety (EPAS)

The EPAS, a key component of the European Aviation Safety Programme, provides a framework for safety work at European level, helping the identification of major safety risks and defining the actions to take. It also intends to supports the Member States of the European Union to implement their State Safety Programmes and is meant to facilitate the sharing of best practice and knowledge.

Strategic priorities for operational safety of Commercial Air Transport aircraft are: aircraft upset in flight (Loss of Control) and runway excursions and collisions. Additionaly, EASA is planning to address current and future safety risks like Cybersecurity and Conflict Zones.

 

 

Costa Rica suspends Nature Air during ongoing investigation of fatal Cessna Caravan accident

Costa Rica’s aviation authority (Dirección General de Aviación Civil) suspended the Nature Air’s AOC on January 12, 2018, over safety issues.

DGAC Costa Rica made this decision because several key employees were no longer with the company. Nature Air’s pilot training director died in the accident on December 31 while the operations manager quit and the safety manager had requested a leave of absence.

DGAC states that Nature Air only has 3 crews for the coverage of all flight routes, including the safety manager who is currently on sick leave.

Update:

The suspension was lifted in February 2018. Financial difficulties prevented the airline from being able to operate flights. This situation caused the DGAC to issue an indefinite suspension of the airline’s AOC on May 2, 2018.

ASN data show 2017 safest year in aviation history

Final report cites inadequate CRM in Boeing 737-800 hitting approach lights on landing at Katowice, Poland