Tag Archives: Airline

Ethiopian crash captain untrained on 737 MAX simulator, says colleague

The captain of a doomed Ethiopian Airlines flight, Yared Getachew, was unable to practice on a new simulator for the Boeing 737 MAX 8 before he died in a crash with 157 others, a pilot colleague said.

Getachew, 29, was due for refresher training at the end of March, his colleague said, two months after Ethiopian Airlines received the simulator.

The March 10 disaster, following another MAX 8 crash in Indonesia in October, has set off one of the biggest inquiries in aviation history. The inquiries focused on whether pilots were sufficiently versed on a new automated system.

In both cases, the pilots lost control soon after take-off and fought a losing battle to stop their jets plunging down. In the Ethiopian crash, it was not clear if Yared’s colleague – First Officer Ahmednur Mohammed, 25, who also died in the crash – had practised on the new MAX simulator.

Globally, most commercial airline pilots refresh training in simulators every six months. It was not clear if Yared or Ahmednur would have been trained on the new simulator or an older one for 737s that their airline also owned.

The MAX, which came into service two years ago, has a new automated system called MCAS (Manoeuvring Characteristics Augmentation System). It is meant to prevent a loss of lift, which can cause an aerodynamic stall, sending the plane downwards in an uncontrolled way. “Boeing did not send manuals on MCAS,’’ the Ethiopian Airlines pilot told Reuters in a hotel lobby, declining to give his name as staff have been told not to speak in public.

“Actually, we know more about the MCAS system from the media than from Boeing.’’ Under unprecedented scrutiny and with its MAX fleet grounded worldwide, the world’s largest planemaker has said airlines were given guidance on how to respond to the activation of MCAS software.

It is also promising a swift update to the system. Ethiopian Airlines declined to comment on the remarks of its pilot to Reuters about the simulator and MCAS system. (Reuters/NAN). Src: vanguardngr and Boeing

Nigeria’s Air Peace Acquires New Boeing 777-300 Aircraft

A Nigerian carrier, Air Peace, has taken delivery of its third Boeing 777-300 aircraft in preparation for the airline’s commencement of international operations.

The 374 capacity aircraft, christened: “Anuli Peggy Onyema”, touched down at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos at about 3.20p.m on Wednesday.

The aircraft, from Texas, United States of America, was received by the Chairman of Air Peace, Mr Allen Onyema and other top aviation personnel.

Onyema told newsmen that Air Peace had taken delivery of its first and second B777 aircraft in February and August 2018 respectively.

He added that one more aircraft was being expected before the end of the year to boost the airline’s international operations.

According to him, the Federal Government has granted approval to Air Peace to begin flights to six international destinations, which are London, Dubai, Sharjah, Guangzhou-China, Mumbai and Johannesburg.

Onyema said that Air Peace had created 3,000 direct jobs and 6,000 ancillary jobs for Nigerians, stressing that the newly acquired B777-300 aircraft would create an additional 1,500 jobs.

He urged Nigerians and the Federal Government to continue to support the airline which was set up to put the country on the global aviation map.

The Boeing 737 Max is now one of the most controversial airliners of all time. Here are 3 others.

The US Federal Aviation Administration grounded the Boeing 737 Max airliner on Wednesday. It was the last and arguably most significant regulatory body to take action against Boeing’s state-of-the-art single-aisle jet.

The enforcement action against the Boeing jet comes after two 737 Max 8 airliners crashed under strikingly similar circumstances in a matter of months.

At the heart of the controversy surrounding the 737 Max is the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS). To fit the Max’s larger, more fuel-efficient engines, Boeing had to redesign the way it mounts engines on the 737. This change disrupted the plane’s center of gravity and caused the Max to have a tendency to tip its nose upward during flight, increasing the likelihood of a stall. MCAS is designed to automatically counteract that tendency and point the nose of the plane downward.

On Wednesday, Boeing announced that a software update to correct the shortcomings of MCAS is incoming. Until then, all 371 Boeing 737 Max airliners already delivered to customers remain grounded.

As a result of the crashes, the grounding of the fleet, and the public furor, the Boeing 737 Max has become one of the most controversial airliners in recent memory.

But the Max isn’t the first plane to run into trouble, and many have been able to overcome their problems to have successful careers.

Here’s a closer look at some of the most controversial airliners in recent history:

De Havilland Comet

AP

The de Havilland Comet ushered in the age of jet-powered passenger flight when it entered service in 1952.

The shiny new jet was fast, sleek, and represented the pinnacle of aviation technology. And then, one by one, Comets started falling out of the sky.

Some of the early crashes were attributed to a design flaw with the wings, which was quickly fixed.

Between summer 1953 and spring 1954, three Comets broke apart in midair. The plane was grounded by the British government in 1954.

It was eventually discovered that the plane disintegrated because of metal fatigue, which was exacerbated by the square shape of its cabin windows. The Comet was redesigned with thicker skin and oval windows before it was allowed back in service.

Unfortunately for the Comet, by that time, America’s Boeing 707 and Douglas DC-8 had taken over as the airline industry’s jet-powered workhorses. More than 100 Comets would be built during the 1950s and early ’60s. Later versions of the Comet would continue in airliner service until the early ’80s.

McDonnell Douglas DC-10

AP

The three-engine McDonnell Douglas DC-10 entered service in 1971 as a smaller rival to the Boeing 747 jumbo jet. But from the beginning, the DC-10 was plagued by problems.

In 1972, American Airlines Flight 96, a nearly brand-new DC-10, had to make an emergency landing in Detroit after losing cabin pressure because the plane’s cargo door blew off mid-flight. A few passengers and crew were injured, but no one was killed.

Two years later, Turkish Airlines Flight 981, another DC-10, also suffered decompression when its cargo door blew off mid-flight. Unfortunately, this time the explosive force of the air rushing out of the plane caused the cabin floor to buckle, damaging the flight controls.

All 346 passengers and crew on board the plane were killed when it nosedived into the French countryside.

The issues that plagued the DC-10 didn’t stop there.

The DC-10 was grounded in 1979 after improper maintenance procedures led an engine to fall off the wing of American Airlines Flight 191 while taking off from Chicago. All 271 people on board the plane were killed, along with two others on the ground.

But the plane went on to become a workhorse for American, United, Continental, and Northwest airlines. It finally exited scheduled passenger service in 2014 and remains popular with cargo carriers such as FedEx.

Airbus A320

Airbus

The Airbus A320 helped put its creator, Airbus, on the map. Since its introduction in the mid-1980s, the single-aisle jet has become the second-best-selling airliner in history, behind only the Boeing 737.

The highlight of the A320 is its advanced fly-by-wire computer-assisted control system. At the time of its debut, there was great debate over whether the industry was ready for such high levels of automation.

The concerns about human-machine interaction were further inflamed by the crash of Air France Flight 296, a demonstration flight designed to promote the capabilities of the A320 that crashed during an air show in 1988. The crash killed three of the passengers on board.

“The A320 has new features which may have inspired some overconfidence in the mind of the Captain,” investigators said in their final report.

But the plane’s reputation recovered in the three decades since the incident.

Boeing 737 Max

Boeing

The Boeing 737 Max started flying passengers in 2017 and, for the first year and a half of its service life, it was relatively trouble-free.

But on October 28, 2018, Lion Air Flight JT610, a 2-month-old Boeing 737 Max 8, crashed shortly takeoff from Jakarta, Indonesia, killing all 189 people on board. On March 10, another nearly brand-new 737 Max 8 crashed, and once again, it was within minutes of takeoff.

This time, it was Ethiopian Airlines Flight ET302, and another 157 people were killed.

Soon after the Lion Air crash, the existence of the flight-control system MCAS came to light.

Initial reports from the Lion Air investigation indicated that a faulty sensor reading may have triggered MCAS shortly after the flight took off. Observers fear that a similar thing may have happened in the March 10 Ethiopian Airlines flight.

Troublingly, pilots flying the 737 Max did not know MCAS existed until Boeing sent out a memo about it after the Lion Air crash, The Wall Street Journal reported. src:amp. businessinsider

Airlines ground 737 Max 8 jets after latest crash – Boeing

Several airlines have grounded Boeing 737 Max 8 jets following a deadly Ethiopian Airlines crash.

The flight crashed minutes after takeoff on Sunday, killing all 157 people on board. It was the second disaster in five months involving a Boeing 737 Max 8.

Aviation regulators in China and Indonesia have suspended flights using that model. Ethiopian Airlines and Cayman Airways, have also grounded their 737 Max 8 aircraft.

While experts warn it is too early to say what caused the Ethiopian Airlines disaster, it comes after the same model crashed in a flight operated by Lion Air in October.

The plane lost altitude soon after takeoff, killing 189 people on board. “Given that two accidents both involved newly delivered Boeing 737 Max 8 planes and happened during take-off phase, they have some degree of similarity,” the Civil Aviation Administration of China said in a statement.

The Chinese regulator ordered local carriers to ground all 737 Max 8 flights by 18:00 local time (10:00 GMT).

Air China, China Eastern Airlines, Kunming Airlines, and China Southern Airlines are among the carriers affected. More than 90 Boeing 737 Max 8 models are in use in mainland China.

The Indonesian Transport Ministry said inspections would begin on 12 March of one Garuda Indonesia plane and 10 operated by Lion Air. Planes would be grounded until cleared by safety regulator.

Shares in French aerospace group Safran, which makes the engines for the 737, fell on Monday.

The aircraft is relatively new to the skies, having only been in commercial use since 2017.

source: boeing.com

Boeing said it was “deeply saddened” by the crash and is sending a team to provide technical assistance to the investigation.

The investigation will be led by Ethiopian authorities co-ordinating with teams of experts from Boeing and the US National Transportation Safety Board.

The Indian government said it was discussing the situation with local regulators. Jet Airways and SpiceJet – neither of which made any comment – both use the aircraft.

Which airlines use the 737 Max 8?
According to Boeing’s website, 16 airlines have taken delivery of the 737 Max 8.

TUI Group has 15 in its fleet and said it is in close contact with the manufacturer, but has no plans to take them out of service. It is the only airline to have any such planes registered with the UK’s Civil Aviation Authority.

A spokesperson for Flydubai told Reuters the carrier is “monitoring the situation”.

Norwegian Airlines, which has 18 in its fleet largely flying between Ireland the US, is continuing to use the planes.

Its director of flight operations said the airline will follow any recommendations from Boeing and aviation authorities. It has three – including one from London Gatwick to Helsinki – in use today.

Singapore’s SilkAir said it was in contact with Boeing and all its fights using 737 Max 8 aircraft – of which it has six – are operating as normal, while Air Italy is also operating its planes as normal.

Several North American airlines also operate the aircraft and have said they are monitoring the investigation.

Southwest Airlines flies 34 of the aircraft and said it had been in contact with Boeing and was operating as normal.

American Airlines and Air Canada each have 24 in their fleet.
Source: bbc.com and mba.aero

157 Feared Dead As Ethiopian Airlines Flight From Addis To Nairobi Crashes.

A statement from the office of the Ethiopian Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed, confirmed the crash, saying: “The Office of the PM, on behalf of the Government and people of Ethiopia, would like to express its deepest condolences to the families of those that have lost their loved ones on Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737 on regular scheduled flight to Nairobi, Kenya this morning.”

An Ethiopian Airlines flight between Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, and Nairobi, the Kenyan capital, has crashed, killing 149 passengers and eight crew members aboard. 

A statement from the office of the Ethiopian Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed, confirmed the crash, saying: “The Office of the PM, on behalf of the Government and people of Ethiopia, would like to express its deepest condolences to the families of those that have lost their loved ones on Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737 on regular scheduled flight to Nairobi, Kenya this morning.”

Flight ET 302 crashed near the town of Bishoftu, 62 kilometres southeast of the capital Addis Ababa, the airline said, identifying the plane was a Boeing 737-800 MAX.

The airline confirmed that 149 passengers and eight crew members were aboard, as the plane took off from Addis Ababa at 8:38am local time (05:38 GMT), but crashed six minutes later.

“At this time search and rescue operations are in progress and we have no confirmed information about survivors or any possible causalities,” a spokesperson for the airline said in a statement. Source: citizentv.co.ke