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Thread: Qatar Airways B77W hit airport approach lights on departure, flight continued

  1. #1
    Member hongmng's Avatar
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    Default Qatar Airways B77W hit airport approach lights on departure, flight continued

    Sounds pretty scary...

    http://avherald.com/h?article=48c78b3a&opt=0

    lined up runway 09 at taxiway T1 (approximately 2600 meters/8500 feet takeoff distance available, full runway length 3968 meters/13,016 feet)
    I wonder why they took the shortcut? They were certainly not light since they are flying 13.5 hours....

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    Senior Member brianw999's Avatar
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    Like somebody said....runway behind you.....isn't runway anymore !
    If it 'ain't broken........ Don't try to mend it !


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    Senior Member Gabriel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hongmng View Post
    Sounds pretty scary...

    http://avherald.com/h?article=48c78b3a&opt=0



    I wonder why they took the shortcut? They were certainly not light since they are flying 13.5 hours....
    Many times you don't have a realistic option. For example, O'hare operates standard with intersection take-offs and you have airplane landings on the parallel runway crossing behind the departure planes. You would basically momentarily shut down landings if you request a full length take-off.

    Of course you can do it if you need it, but if the performance charts show that you are good to go, you normally go.

    It is a similar question to "why do they take off with reduced thrust instead of the full take-off thrust available?".

    Now, given that they dragged the belly on the approach lights, something went terribly wrong here, since an airplane should never be so thin on margins unless they have an engine failure at or very close after V1 (and still they should be at 35ft at the end of the runway), which is not what happened here because the plane completed the trip, which they would have not done if an engine had failed. It could be:
    - Terribly executed take-off with a power setting way below the calculated one or a very late rotation well past Vr (I highly doubt this will be the case).
    - Wrong performance calculation (wrong weight or runway length entered).
    - Wrong intersection (they intended to take-off from another farther intersection but turned in the wrong one).
    - Wrong take-off configuration (they had less flap/slat that assumed in the calculation).
    - Etc???

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    Senior Member TeeVee's Avatar
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    i'm not so concerned with the how or why it happened. what i'd like to know is HTF they knew the airplane was safe to take on a long trans-atlantic flight KNOWING they hit something on takeoff. seriously!

    i was going to fly qatar to Dubai in December. now???

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    Senior Member Gabriel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TeeVee View Post
    i'm not so concerned with the how or why it happened. what i'd like to know is HTF they knew the airplane was safe to take on a long trans-atlantic flight KNOWING they hit something on takeoff. seriously!
    Please explain how do you KNOW that they did it KNOWING they hit something.

    If that was the case, I would fully agree with you. But AFAIK there is no slightest piece of hint pointing in that direction. Furthermore, if you read the Av Herald article linked you will find a hint pointing in the opposite direction.

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    Senior Member 3WE's Avatar
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    Is V1 a location on the runway?
    Les règles de l'aviation de base découragent de longues périodes de dur tirer vers le haut.

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    Senior Member Gabriel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3WE View Post
    Is V1 a location on the runway?
    No, but it should.

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    Senior Member Evan's Avatar
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    Is V2 a location on the approach lights?

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    Senior Member 3WE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Evan View Post
    Is V2 a location on the approach lights?
    Apparently so.
    Les règles de l'aviation de base découragent de longues périodes de dur tirer vers le haut.

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    Senior Member TeeVee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gabriel View Post
    Please explain how do you KNOW that they did it KNOWING they hit something.

    If that was the case, I would fully agree with you. But AFAIK there is no slightest piece of hint pointing in that direction. Furthermore, if you read the Av Herald article linked you will find a hint pointing in the opposite direction.
    deductive reasoning. i safely assumed that this flight was not the first or the last to use that runway that day. so how did they know it was the one to take out the lights? Answer: the ground crew knew but didn't call them back.

    maybe i'm wrong but i have a feeling some local heads here are gonna roll....

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    Senior Member Gabriel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TeeVee View Post
    deductive reasoning. i safely assumed that this flight was not the first or the last to use that runway that day. so how did they know it was the one to take out the lights? Answer: the ground crew knew but didn't call them back.

    maybe i'm wrong but i have a feeling some local heads here are gonna roll....
    If runway say 18 is used for take off and you hit the approach lights to runway 36, which are off the runway, it might take a good while until someone realizes, since these lights would have been turned off to begin with and nobody is looking at them anyway (on or off).

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    Senior Member Evan's Avatar
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    The crew knew they were in trouble by the time they lifted off. They knew they were low enough to strike the lights. They were probably praying at that moment as the threshold was approaching that they wouldn't strike the lights. I think the professional thing to do is too ask the ground services to have a look at them before continuing a transatlantic flight. It should be SOP in any takeoff performance incident like this.

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    Senior Member Peter Kesternich's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TeeVee View Post
    (...)i was going to fly qatar to Dubai in December. now???
    One shouldn't fly on Qatar, Emirates, or Ethiad in any case, unless one is a resident of Qatar or the U.A.E. Support your local airline industry

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    Senior Member TeeVee's Avatar
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    i would be very surprised if runway lights weren't on a circuit that notified a central location of a bulb out. even my cheapo mazda tells me a signal light or headlight is out...

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    Senior Member Gabriel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TeeVee View Post
    i would be very surprised if runway lights weren't on a circuit that notified a central location of a bulb out. even my cheapo mazda tells me a signal light or headlight is out...
    Oh yes? Does it even tell you of a headlight out when you have your headlights turned off?

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    Senior Member 3WE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gabriel View Post
    Oh yes? Does it even tell you of a headlight out when you have your headlights turned off?
    I clearly recall Johnny Jacobs and his extension cord!
    Les règles de l'aviation de base découragent de longues périodes de dur tirer vers le haut.

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    Senior Member TeeVee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gabriel View Post
    Oh yes? Does it even tell you of a headlight out when you have your headlights turned off?
    not sure. but since the flight we are talking about took off at 8:37 pm, i suspect the lights were turned on, since sunset was about 7:20 pm...

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    Senior Member Gabriel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TeeVee View Post
    not sure. but since the flight we are talking about took off at 8:37 pm, i suspect the lights were turned on, since sunset was about 7:20 pm...
    Most likely no, they were not because the runway was not in use (for approaching planes in the opposite direction).

    As I said in the previous post:

    If runway say 18 is used for take off and you hit the approach lights to runway 36...

    If it is not clear, I can draw a sketch for you.

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    Senior Member Evan's Avatar
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    This is a photo of the approach lighting damage. It's a lucky thing the array is so simple. On the first stage lighting, it appears that the left and right were hit but not the center, and then the second stage, a single centerline light, was hit. I wonder if the gear was damaged as well.

    The 27 threshold is right by the terminal bldg and the array can be easily seen from the perimeter road. Any halfwit could have easily driven over there and witnessed the damage. Clearly the aircraft had hit the lights. How could they have allowed it to continue across the pond?

  20. #20
    Senior Member Gabriel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Evan View Post
    The 27 threshold is right by the terminal bldg and the array can be easily seen from the perimeter road. Any halfwit could have easily driven over there and witnessed the damage. Clearly the aircraft had hit the lights. How could they have allowed it to continue across the pond?
    Please explain me why any halfwit would go and look in the first place.
    AFAIK so far, nobody allowed anybody to "cross the pond after hitting the lights", because nobody knew.

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