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Thread: BREAKING: Boeing 767 cargo jet operated by Atlas Air has crashed in Texas

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    Member ErezS's Avatar
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    Default BREAKING: Boeing 767 cargo jet operated by Atlas Air has crashed in Texas

    BREAKING: FAA: Boeing 767 cargo jet operated by Atlas Air Inc. has crashed into Trinity Bay near Anahuac, Texas, while en route from Miami to Houston; initial reports indicate 3 people were on board.

    https://twitter.com/NBCNews/status/1099395767855443971?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed&ref_url=http%3A%2F%2Frotter.net%2Fforum%2Fscoops1%2F535051.shtml

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/D0HX5w6XgAMHlpo.jpg


    Live stream:
    https://www.click2houston.com/news/b...board-faa-says
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    Senior Member 3WE's Avatar
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    The proverbial airliner-eating thunderstorm?
    Bad cargo burns/explodes?
    Bad guy (bad employee) on board?

    Cannot discount mechanical/structural failure, relentless pull up, meteors and many others, but those others are the first questions for me.
    Les règles de l'aviation de base découragent de longues périodes de dur tirer vers le haut.

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    Junior Member HansPeter's Avatar
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    No survivors

    Looks like they put her down on water. Could have been really bad on land in that area.

    May they rest in peace.

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    Senior Member B757300's Avatar
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    Not that far from me (about 100 miles), and I didn't even hear about except by random happen stance. My local news sucks so bad.

    Not a lot of debris left, but anything big would have probably sunk to the bottom.

    Looks like the aircraft was N1217A.

    https://twitter.com/AirlineFlyer/sta...97894589816832

    Another streaming source:

    https://www.khou.com/video/news/loca...go/285-1826934

    Press conference notes:

    Debris field is about 3/4 of a mile in size. Nothing of consequence left of the aircraft other than some pieces of the landing gear being visible and some pieces of fuselage.

    No survivors or any human remains found.

    Texas DPS dive team on the way to assist in recovery of bodies and the data recorders. FBI is in charge of the scene for the time being, waiting on the NTSB to arrive and take over. No suspicion of foul play.

    Water is not deep, generally 5ft or less, but the entire area is a marsh. (Think where Valujet 592 crashed.) Air boats are the best method of transportation.

    The Sheriff refused to even speculate on the cause, saying he is a sheriff and that's not his place.

    Witnesses said it crashed nose down, and was fairly low when the dive began, but we all know witnesses are notoriously unreliable.

    NTSB Go Team is on the way.

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    Senior Member B757300's Avatar
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    Stolen from another site. Haven't had time to listen to it; a little over 30 minutes.

    ATC recording.

    http://archive-server.liveatc.net/ki...2019-1830Z.mp3

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    Senior Member 3WE's Avatar
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    Lots of weather. I didn't note anything useful on the ATC recording.
    Les règles de l'aviation de base découragent de longues périodes de dur tirer vers le haut.

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    Junior Member HansPeter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3WE View Post
    Lots of weather. I didn't note anything useful on the ATC recording.
    All the talk about weather is useful. Apparently a heavy rainband was between the airport and the plane. No talk about fire, problems with cargo or aircraft.

    Just a quick transcript: (not complete in anyway)

    @ 00:24 KIAH: "Good Afternoon Giant 3591..."
    @ 04:00 KIAH: "591 Heavy, there is a little bit of light well now it's showing a little bit of heavy. Light to Heavy precipitation just west of, it looks like V?? and it is moving eastbound so ones you getting closer... vectors around it we'll ... accommodate that."
    @ 06:15 Cockpit: "591 we'll go on the west side."
    @ 06:18 KIAH: "The only problem we have with that right now there is a bunch of departures...so what we are going to do..."
    @ 06:24 Cockpit: "OK, fine. OK then I'll go on the east side..."
    @ 09:21 KIAH: "91 Heavy, Houston approach. Please ... We are out of contact."
    @ 10:01 KIAH: "40, are you picking up any ELT(s) right now?"

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    Senior Member Gabriel's Avatar
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    Senior Member 3WE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HansPeter View Post
    All the talk about weather is useful.
    Not really. Witnesses state the weather was ok at the crash site and Gabe's YouTube shows them crashing well short of the line of storms AND aiming at a lighter area, anyway.

    Funky cargo or funky person on board (the lack of a mayday call might point to the second). (Earlier disclaimer still applies)
    Les règles de l'aviation de base découragent de longues périodes de dur tirer vers le haut.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gabriel View Post

    Not pilot/ATC here just an aviation "enthusiast" . . . so please don't flame me too forcefully - but it seems to me based on the flight track data that "it" happened (or the end result of "it") at ~ 01:36:40. At that moment (+/- 10-20 secs) the a/c began:

    - deviation from course
    - rapid plunge
    - airspeed decrease quite quickly.

    Weather radar shows bad stuff, but not terribly near the incident site itself nor where the a/c deviation from course began.

    Without any distress call or even keying, given the rate of altitude loss, and in view of the wreckage photos (mostly small bits etc.) it seems IMHO regardless of the cause - the cause (or causes) was/were unexpected and catastrophic that lead to effectively (if not entirely) sudden loss of control - all of it transpiring in about 90 seconds (notwithstanding some prior issue/problem that played into the final event perhaps occurring earlier but not manifesting until the final event). Most of that of course is probably somewhat obvious at this point.

    Again, I'm just looking at data/numbers etc. I am not a trained pilot or ATC. But when more info/investigation unfolds, I'll be curious about timeponit 01:36:40 plus minus a titch.

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    Senior Member TeeVee's Avatar
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    when BB comes along, you have my condolences, as i'm sure you knew the crew.

    RIP folks

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    Senior Member Evan's Avatar
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    N1217A: 1992-build 767, converted freighter, former LAN aircraft, stored in 2014, delivered to ATLAS in 2016. Stored 11/2016. Delivered again to ATLAS under new registration (N1217A) on 8/04/2017.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TeeVee View Post
    when BB comes along, you have my condolences, as i'm sure you knew the crew.

    RIP folks
    76 crew and fairly new as well. Had no idea who they were, RIP airmen. I have been telling them for years it was a matter of when not if. Just keep putting warm bodies in the seats to meet the requirements, no experience in heavy jets, no experience in long over water operations. NO hands! Just keep pushing the damn buttons and ask what's happening... SMH Evan, answer the G.D. question!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by BoeingBobby View Post
    76 crew and fairly new as well. Had no idea who they were, RIP airmen. I have been telling them for years it was a matter of when not if. Just keep putting warm bodies in the seats to meet the requirements, no experience in heavy jets, no experience in long over water operations. NO hands! Just keep pushing the damn buttons and ask what's happening... SMH Evan, answer the G.D. question!!
    Not for nothing, Bobby, but I don't know if this is an entirely appropriate sentiment in this case. Not sure how much good thousands of hours of overwater ops would have done here.

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    Senior Member 3WE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BoeingBobby View Post
    ***Just keep putting warm bodies in the seats to meet the requirements, no experience in heavy jets, no experience in long over water operations.***
    So why is the RJ safety record so stellar?
    Les règles de l'aviation de base découragent de longues périodes de dur tirer vers le haut.

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    Senior Member Evan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BoeingBobby View Post
    Evan, answer the G.D. question!!
    I'll give you the same answer I gave ATL: this forum isn't about me or my type rating on the SR-71 converted freighter.

    This doesn't look to me like a loss-of-control due to weak piloting skills. It looks like something catastrophic (but I've been wrong about that before...)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Evan View Post
    the SR-71 converted freighter
    That would be epic!

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    Senior Member Gabriel's Avatar
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    The AVH article (updated since yesterday) includes this:
    In the late evening (local time) of Feb 23rd 2019 the Sheriff's office reported one body was recovered. Joint efforts by the Sheriff's office, the FBI and NTSB continue to recover the victims and the black boxes. The crash scene extends over a distance of 3 miles in shallow waters up to 5 feet deep. Multiple dive teams from the Baytown police, Houston police and Texas Department of Public Safety are working at the crash site.
    Now I tend to think that the 3 miles, if correct, may be due to debris floating and drifting due to wind/currents.

    The plane seems to have been in control until very near the end, with the altitude and ground speed slowly descending until at the last moments the ground speed reached it's all-time-low of 240 kts (I don't know the wind, but it seems too slow for an in-flight break up and to fast for a stall) and the sink rate increased to 7000 fpm.

    https://flightaware.com/live/flight/GTI ... H/tracklog

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    Senior Member 3WE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gabriel View Post
    *** ground speed reached it's all-time-low of 240 kts ***
    Flamingly unremmarkable. (As you say)

    I am leaning a bit to internal nut job sabotage.
    Les règles de l'aviation de base découragent de longues périodes de dur tirer vers le haut.

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    Senior Member B757300's Avatar
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    If I got anything wrong while trying to type this live, I apologize in advance.

    From the press conference. NTSB Chairman Robert Sumwalt is giving the press conference.

    Bill English is the investigator in charge.

    NTSB Go Team arrived last night.

    Atlas Air Flight 3591 contacted Houston at ~12:30PM. ATC told the pilots light rain was ahead and gave them radar vectors around the

    Cleared to descend to 3,000ft.

    12:39 is when communication was lost as was radar contact when the aircraft is at 6,000ft.

    Security video found of the crash from the Chambers’ County Jail. Video shows it in a steep, nose down attitude for about 5 second. Video will be analyzed by the NTSB.

    No distress call.

    Main wrecking is orientated in a NW direction.

    200 yards by 100 yards side

    Remains of both wings within the debris field.

    Landing gear parts are outside of the main debris field.

    Flight data recorders have not been found.

    The aircraft did not have any hazmat in the cargo.

    The FBI’s job is to collect witness statements and helping with evidence collection.

    Boeing and GE have representatives (among others) with the investigation.

    The NTSB will not be speculating as to the cause. That is what the investigation is for and will happen once all of the debris is collected.

    Questions:

    How much fuel was spilled?
    NTSB does not know at this time, but will know that later.

    How can an aircraft get into a steep nose dive very quickly?
    “We are there to figure that out.”

    How much time did the pilots have?
    Will be answered by radar data analysis and data recorder analysis

    Question on witness statements. He basically said witness statements are not always accurate.
    No evidence of aircraft trying to turn or pull up.

    Can the NTSB ID the crew?
    The NTBS will not identify the crew. That falls to the medical examiner.

    Question on CVR/FDR recovery.
    The data recorders may not be easy to find as the pingers may not work due to the mud.
    Might take dive teams and walking through the water, or dredging to find the recorders.

    Question on how long the NTSB will be on scene and how long the investigation will take.
    Until everything, especially the recorders, are collected. Investigation will take 12-18 months at least.

    Will the video be released?
    Yes, but not right away. It will be released with the rest of the evidence.

    From the Bryan Hawthorne, Chambers County Sheriff:

    Two bodies recovered, not IDed at this timed.

    Names will be released from the Sheriff’s office and/or the FBI, once the medical examiner makes confirmed IDs.

    The tide is out and make boat/barge operations more difficult

    From the FBI (missed the special agent’s name):

    FBI has asked for anyone with photos, videos, or if any debris landed on their property.

    FBI is doing all background investigations of the crew/passenger which is standard for this kind of accident

    People have already called in to provide photos, videos, and reporting debris.

    Sheriff chimed in to say there was not a large quantity of fuel just after the accident.

    Another press conference tomorrow at 4:00PM.

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