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ATSB: A330 and B737-800 came within 800 m during takeoff and go around at Sydney Airport
18 January 2020

ATSB: A330 and B737-800 came within 800 m during takeoff and go around at Sydney Airport

A330 and 737 flight paths and indication of the area of minimum separation (ATSB)

The design of standard instrument approaches and departures, air traffic control and flight crew actions and procedures, and the coding of aircraft flight management system navigation databases are among a number of the factors the ATSB is focusing on as part of the on-going investigation into a loss of separation event near Sydney Airport.

That investigation’s preliminary report, details that separation between two Qantas aircraft, an Airbus A330-300 and a Boeing 737-800, was reduced to about 0.43 nautical miles (796 metres) laterally and about 500 feet (152 metres) vertically during the incident, which occurred at around 18:30 hours local time on 5 August 2019.

The A330 had been cleared by air traffic control to take-off from Sydney Airport’s runway 34 Right, at the same time that the 737 was on final approach to land on the same runway. While the A330 was commencing its takeoff run, the air traffic controller with responsibility for managing runway 34 Right, an otherwise experienced controller who was a trainee under supervision for the Aerodrome Controller – East (ADC-E) position, assessed that if the 737 continued to land, there would be insufficient runway spacing between the two aircraft, and so instructed the 737 to conduct a go around.

The preliminary report details that the loss of separation occurred as both aircraft turned to the right, with the A330 turning to the right following a standard instrument departure (SID) from runway 34R (the MARUB 6 SID) and the 737 turning to the right following the missed approach procedure for a GLS (a global navigation satellite system landing system) approach for a landing on runway 34R.

The ADC-E controller, who reported that he had both aircraft in sight, attempted to increase their separation by instructing the 737 to turn further right. As both aircraft converged, the A330 flight crew received a traffic advisory (TA) alert from their aircraft’s airborne collision avoidance system (ACAS). The A330 first officer, who was pilot flying, then saw the 737 in close proximity and, in response, reduced the aircraft’s angle of bank to reduce the turn towards the 737. The captain of the A330 radioed to advise the ADC-E controller that their proximity to the 737 was “very close”. The controller then issued an instruction to the A330 flight crew to turn left.
The A330 climbed to 5,000 feet and continued to Melbourne without further incident. The 737 climbed to 3,000 feet and was issued radar vectors for a second approach to runway 34R. It landed without further incident a short time later.

The investigation is ongoing.

EASA recommends flights over Iran be avoided below FL250

 The European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) issued a Conflict Zone Information Bulletin recommending that flights over Iran be avoided at levels lower than 25,000 feet.

The Bulletin is valid until 16 July 2020 and reflects the conclusions of the EU Integrated Aviation Security Risk Assessment Group, which comprises EASA, the European Commission, European External Action Service and the EU Member States.
It states: “Due to the hazardous security situation, and poor coordination between civil aviation and military operations, there is a risk of misidentification of civil aircraft. Due to the presence of advanced air-defence systems, it is advised to be cautious with the risk associated to civil aviation. The risk to operations is assessed to be HIGH for Flight Levels below 250.”

As the situation in Iran is currently very dynamic, a more restrictive recommendation, issued on 11/01/2020 by EASA and the European Commission, also remains in place. This recommendation states that overflights of Iran at all levels should be avoided until further notice, as a precautionary measure.

This recommendation was issued to EU National Aviation Authorities in response to Iran’s admission that it had accidentally shot down flight PS752. This recommendation does not have the more formal status or fixed time limitation of a Conflict Zone Information Bulletin and may, therefore, be adjusted quickly, as appropriate, in response to any new information as it becomes available. EASA says it continues to monitor the situation closely.

 

FAA extends allowed operations in Persian Gulf and Gulf of Oman airspace

The U.S. FAA has extended the allowed operations in Persian Gulf and Gulf of Oman airspace, following a flight ban issued on January 8 and updated on January 10.

The ban over the Persian Gulf and Gulf of Oman airspace does not apply to operations conducted into and out of the countries Bahrain (and Qatar) and the U.A.E. airports, Abu Dhabi (OMAA/OMAM), Dubai (OMDB), Sharjah (OMSJ), and (newly added to the list) Al Bateen (OMAD), Al Ain (OMAL), Dalma Island (OMDL), Dubai Al Maktoum (OMDW), Fujairah (OMFJ), Ras Al-Khaimah (OMRK), And Sir Bani Yas (OMBY). As long as these flights remain within the Bahrain (OBBB), Emirates (OMAE), and Muscat (OOMM) Flight Information Regions (FIRs).
Operators must be on a published instrument procedure or under the direction of air traffic control, minimize overwater operations to the maximum extent possible, and are prohibited from entering the Tehran FIR (OIIX). For operations in the Muscat FIR (OOMM), flight operations may be conducted overwater south of M628. use of M628 in overwater areas in the Muscat FIR (OOMM) is not authorized.

More information:

 

Iran admits flight PS752 was inadvertently shot down with a missile

FAA narrows down flight ban in Persian Gulf and Gulf of Oman airspace

The U.S. FAA has narrowed down a flight ban that was issued on January 8.

The ban over the Persian Gulf and Gulf of Oman airspace does not apply to operations conducted into and out of Bahrain (OBBI), Doha (OTBD/OTBH), Abu Dhabi (OMAA/OMAM), Dubai (OMDB), Sharjah (OMSJ), And Muscat (OOMS). As long as these flights remain within the Bahrain (OBBB), Emirates (OMAE), and Muscat (OOMM) Flight Information Regions (FIRs).
Operators must be on a published instrument procedure or under the direction of air traffic control, minimize overwater operations to the maximum extent possible, and are prohibited from entering the Tehran FIR (OIIX). For operations in the Muscat FIR (OOMM), flight operations may be conducted overwater south of M628. use of M628 in overwater areas in the Muscat FIR (OOMM) is not authorized.

More information:

 

FAA bans U.S. flights over Iran, Iraq airspace, Persian Gulf and Gulf of Oman

The U.S. FAA issued three Notams, prohibiting American aircraft and pilots to use Iranian (Tehran FIR) and Iraqi (Baghdad FIR) airspace and the airspace over the Persian Gulf and Gulf of Oman.

Aviation Safety Network releases 2019 airliner accident statistics

The Aviation Safety Network today released the 2019 airliner accident statistics showing a total of 20 fatal airliner accidents, resulting in 283 fatalities.

 

Despite the high-profile Boeing 737 MAX accident, the year 2019 was one of the safest years ever for commercial aviation, Aviation Safety Network data show. Yet, while the number of fatalities has decreased, the number of accidents has increased to a level above the five-year average.

Over the year 2019, the Aviation Safety Network recorded a total of 20 fatal airliner accidents [1], resulting in 283 (occupant) fatalities. This makes 2019 the seventh safest year ever by the number of fatal accidents and the third safest in terms of fatalities. The safest year in aviation history was 2017 with 10 accidents and 44 lives lost.
Looking at that five-year average of 14 accidents and 480 fatalities, last year showed a markedly higher number of accidents.

Thirteen accidents involved passenger flights, six were cargo flights. One out of 20 accident airplanes were operated by airlines on the E.U. “blacklist”, down by two compared to 2018.

Surprisingly more than half of the accidents (11) occurred in North America  (compared to just one in 2018 and three in 2017). Five accidents occurred in remote or rugged parts of Canada and Alaska. Despite progress made through various safety initiatives by Canadian and U.S. regulators, this still is an area of concern.

Given the estimated worldwide air traffic of about 39,000,000 flights, the accident rate is one fatal accident per almost two million flights.
Reflecting on this accident rate, Aviation Safety Network’s CEO Harro Ranter stated that the level of safety has increased significantly: “If the accident rate had remained the same as ten years ago, there would have been 34 fatal accidents last year. At the accident rate of the year 2000, there would even have been 65 fatal accidents. This shows the enormous progress in terms of safety in the past two decades.”

[1] Statistics are based on all worldwide fatal commercial aircraft accidents (passenger and cargo flights) involving civil aircraft of which the basic model has been certified for carrying 14 or more passengers.

The Aviation Safety Network is an independent organisation located in the Netherlands. Founded in 1996. It has the aim to provide everyone with a (professional) interest in aviation with up-to-date, complete and reliable authoritative information on airliner accidents and safety issues. ASN is an exclusive service of the Flight Safety Foundation (FSF). The figures have been compiled using the airliner accident database of the Aviation Safety Network, the Internet leader in aviation safety information. The Aviation Safety Network uses information from authoritative and official sources.

More information:

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Harro Ranter
the Aviation Safety Network
e-mail: hr@aviation-safety.net
twitter: @AviationSafety

 

FAA extends conflict zone Notam on Pakistan airspace by a year

The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration extended the Conflict Zone Notam on Pakistani airspace by a year, to 30 December 2020. U.S. pilots are warned about the risks when flying into and out of Pakistan for the potential threat of terrorists using manpads.

FAA extends conflict zone Notam on Afghan airspace by another year

The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration extended the Conflict Zone Notam on Afghan airspace by a year, warning American pilots to stay at or above FL330 over Afghanistan.

Bamboo Airways passes IATA safety audit

Bamboo Airways passed the IATA Operational Safety Audit (IOSA).

Bamboo Airways is an airline from Vietnam with hubs at Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. It commenced operations in 2019. The airline currently has one Airbus A319, eleven A320s, three A320neos, two A321s, four A321neos and two Boeing 787-9s.

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:

Bamboo Airways A321neo (photo: Melv_L – MACASR / CC:by-sa)