Alaska 261 Animated Footage.....

Mookie

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very heavy...

hit me like a goddamned brick...

-mookie
 

DH106

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Whenever this crash comes up in discussion, most pilots remark, "Oh yeah... didn't the jackscrew just break, or something?" Most people don't realize that this crash was the result of gross negligence.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alaska_Airlines_Flight_261

The investigation then proceeded to examine why scheduled maintenance had failed to adequately lubricate the jackscrew assembly. In interviews with the Alaska Airlines SFO mechanic who last performed the lubrication it was revealed that the task took about 1 hour, whereas the aircraft manufacturer estimated the task should take 4 hours. This and other evidence suggested to the NTSB that "the SFO mechanic who was responsible for lubricating the jackscrew assembly in September 1999 did not adequately perform the task." Laboratory tests indicated that the excessive wear of jackscrew assembly could not have accumulated in just the 4 months period between the September 1999 maintenance and the accident flight. Therefore, the NTSB concluded that "more that just the last lubrication was missed or inadequately performed."

In order to monitor wear on the jackscrew assembly a periodic maintenance inspection called an "end play check" was used. The NTSB examined why the last end play check on the accident aircraft in September 1997 did not uncover excessive wear. The investigation found that Alaska Airlines had fabricated tools to be used in the end play check that did not meet the manufacturer's requirements. Testing revealed that the non-standard tools ("restraining fixtures") used by Alaska Airlines could result in inaccurate measurements, and that it was possible that if accurate measurements had been obtained at the time of the last inspection, these measurements would have indicated the excessive wear and the need for the replacement of the affected components.

Between 1985 to 1996 Alaska Airlines progressively increased the period in between jackscrew lubrication as well as end play checks with the approval of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Since each lubrication or end play check subsequently not conducted had represented an opportunity to adequately lubricate the jackscrew or detect excessive wear, the NTSB examined the justification of these extensions. In the case of extended lubrication intervals, the investigation was not able to determine what information, if any, was presented by Alaska Airlines to the FAA prior to 1996. Testimony from a FAA inspector regarding an extension granted in 1996 was that Alaska Airlines submitted documentation from Boeing as justification for their extension.
End play checks were conducted during a periodic comprehensive airframe overhaul process called a "C-check". Testimony from the director of reliability and maintenance programs of Alaska Airlines was that a data analysis package based on the maintenance history of 5 sample airplanes was submitted to the FAA to justify the extended period between C-checks. Individual maintenance tasks (such as the end play check) were not separately considered in this extension. The NTSB found that "Alaska Airlines' end play check interval extension should have been, but was not, supported by adequate technical data to demonstrate that the extension would not present a potential hazard."

In NTSB board member John J. Goglia's statement for the final report, which was concurred with by all three other board members, he wrote:
"This is a maintenance accident. Alaska Airlines' maintenance and inspection of its horizontal stabilizer activation system was poorly conceived and woefully executed. The failure was compounded by poor oversight...Had any of the managers, mechanics, inspectors, supervisors or FAA overseers whose job it was to protect this mechanism done their job conscientiously, this accident cannot happen...NTSB has made several specific maintenance recommendations, some already accomplished, that will, if followed, prevent the recurrence of this particular accident. But maintenance, poorly done, will find a way to bite somewhere else."
 
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DashTrash400

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Whenever this crash comes up in discussion, most pilots remark, "Oh yeah... didn't the jackscrew just break, or something?" Most people don't realize that this crash was the result of gross negligence.
So much of that accident report sounds woefully familiar here at Horizon. Especially where the dispatcher was trying to get the pilots to continue to SFO as to not disrupt the schedule... just the wording he used to push the pilots to change to their plan while carefully avoiding taking responsibility for the decision himself... I swear he was reading from the exact same script that our dispatchers and crew schedulers use. A b!tchslapping from the NTSB changed nothing in that regard.

Note that the NTSB faulted the FAA with inadequate oversight of Alaska MX. Since then a good deal of that maintenance has been outsourced to contractors. Anybody wanna take a guess as to whether the FAA oversight has actually increased? They just found a bunch of under-lubed jackscrews a year or two ago. Nothing's really changed.
 
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linepilot

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They don't make an imoticon for shedding a tear.
Very touching tribute.
 

Kharma Police

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Who is Alaska's "Forklift Joe"?
 

ATRCAPT

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I was flying Dash at QX when this happened and was in the terminal at SEATAC when the word came. Sad.
 

Simon Says

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I don't even know what to say. That was a very moving video. God Speed to the crew and passengers.
 

propsarebest

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I was working for QX at the time... I saw one of the F/A's that was on that airplane come home for the last time back to SMF. His remains rode in the cockpit. The capt. held everyone on the plane until his mother and sister could take possession. It was very touching.


R.I.P.
 
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