Fedex incident in NRT right now.. anyone heard anything?

b19

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May God, family and friends protect, look after, and be patient, kind and understanding with the children, if any, of these two pilots.

Life goes on for the rest of us, but it is never the same for the kids. My prayers are with them, that someday they will have peace, hope and faith in their hearts. I can only pray that road until they get there is not so long and horrible, and that many are there for the long haul to guide them and share the load. May they someday have peace, I pray.
 

JFReservist

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>$$$$$
May God, family and friends protect, look after, and be patient, kind and understanding with the children, if any, of these two pilots.

Life goes on for the rest of us, but it is never the same for the kids. My prayers are with them, that someday they will have peace, hope and faith in their hearts. I can only pray that road until they get there is not so long and horrible, and that many are there for the long haul to guide them and share the load. May they someday have peace, I pray.
Godspeed to the crew, grace and peace to their families and loved ones... To all my purple friends - my family is in prayer with you.
 

Fly Astar Jets

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Yep.
From our family to yours

Thoughts and prayers for the Crew and all FDX aviators who are hurting.

FAJ and the AStar family
 

hvydriver

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Thoughts and prayers, Purple. That is awful.
 

cheyflyer

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May God, family and friends protect, look after, and be patient, kind and understanding with the children, if any, of these two pilots.

Life goes on for the rest of us, but it is never the same for the kids. My prayers are with them, that someday they will have peace, hope and faith in their hearts. I can only pray that road until they get there is not so long and horrible, and that many are there for the long haul to guide them and share the load. May they someday have peace, I pray.
LORD, Hear our PRAYER.....

cf
 

Mike man

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My thoughts and prayers are with them and the entire FedEx family...Godspeed...
 

Snakum

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For all the arm chairs; please be be quiet. We don't know, you don't know, nobody knows. Respect the people involved.
Our friends are now with God as are the families please respect the emotion.
There's one of these in every crash thread ... someone who thinks they have the right to tell everyone else what they should be doing on the internet. Jeez. Thankfully, they are ignored as possible causes are discussed and INFORMATION IS SHARED in a respectful manner. If you want a Condolences Only thread ... start one.

You bet yer azz if I flew an MD11 I'd want to discuss what went wrong and how it could have been handled differently - not that the crew didn't do a stellar job, only that there are always things that could have been done differently.

(gets off soapbox) Thoughts and prayers to Purple and the families of the crew.
 

cessnapilot

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There's one of these in every crash thread ... someone who thinks they have the right to tell everyone else what they should be doing on the internet. Jeez. Thankfully, they are ignored as possible causes are discussed and INFORMATION IS SHARED in a respectful manner. If you want a Condolences Only thread ... start one.

You bet yer azz if I flew an MD11 I'd want to discuss what went wrong and how it could have been handled differently - not that the crew didn't do a stellar job, only that there are always things that could have been done differently.

(gets off soapbox) Thoughts and prayers to Purple and the families of the crew.
Thanks for posting that. I really feel bad for the family and friends left behind, and my prayers go out to all of them. That being said, someone posted the report from the EWR incident on APC, and I learned a lot about the MD-11... which is what I fly now. Information might help others, and it takes nothing away from the respect we have for those lost yesterday. It has me thinking...
Regards,
cp
 

tjsatter

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There's one of these in every crash thread ... someone who thinks they have the right to tell everyone else what they should be doing on the internet. Jeez. Thankfully, they are ignored as possible causes are discussed and INFORMATION IS SHARED in a respectful manner. If you want a Condolences Only thread ... start one.

You bet yer azz if I flew an MD11 I'd want to discuss what went wrong and how it could have been handled differently - not that the crew didn't do a stellar job, only that there are always things that could have been done differently.

(gets off soapbox) Thoughts and prayers to Purple and the families of the crew.
Yeah, it's really unfortunate that an honest, unemotional discussion of what COULD have happened is not possible on an open website anymore. I remember the good-ole-days on AVSIG when intelligent speculation by knowledgeable people could give reasonable, intelligent possibilities oftentimes while the wreckage was still smoking. One does not dare do so now even though to this MD11 pilot it is quite obvious what they did wrong.

How does that saying go? Aviation, like the sea, is unforgiving of any incapacity or negelect? This was human error.

tj
 

Usedtobe

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God Speed to those great men, now lets all work together so we dont loose any more of our extended family.

Condolences to the families and all our friends at FEDEX.
 

filejw

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I feel for you guys at Fed Ex and wish you the best as you struggle with your loss.The thought that I could have shaken hand with these guys at the Jet Lag or Bon Cafe makes me pretty sad myself. Please just ignore the idiot that will post on this or any other site. The best to all the F E folks...JW
 

Kaman

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That was terrible to watch, and I have the most awful feeling in the pit of my stomach, because I went to ALPA Basic Safety School with some FedEx MD-11 folks.
As far as the accident, I think it is more compelling to question what we didn't see vs. what we didn't. Primarily if they had the airplane in a stablilzed approach/on-speed for any additives. Awful accident to witness, even if just on the news.
 

Big Beer Belly

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One does not dare do so now even though to this MD11 pilot it is quite obvious what they did wrong.

...Aviation, like the sea, is unforgiving of any incapacity or negelect? This was human error.

tj
YIKES tj... nothing like a rush to judgment.

As one ages, gains experience and perspective, one also generally becomes more humble. Perhaps... just perhaps... there is good reason the NTSB doesn't follow your lead. Winds, windshear, gusts, crosswind component, V-speeds, control inputs, LSAS/autoflight inputs if applicable, autothrottle response if applicable, spoilers, autobrakes and about a thousand other parameters will be analyzed BEFORE any conclusions are reached. Do you see the difference?

If you are unable to control yourself and absolutely must speculate, the PROFESSIONAL thing to do is not assign blame before you know all the facts. I would think this would be obvious. Apparently it escapes you. :mad:

My sincere condolences to our FedEx colleagues and to the families of the crew of Flt 80.


BBB
 

One Dot Low

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An interesting article written in 2006.

“FedEx Burns Another
Safety Lessons from the Latest Accident of a FedEx Aircraft
Air Safety Week 08/07/2006

It’s been an article of faith among multi-engine pilots that if you
drive your bird in a little hard, forget to flare or kick off the drift,
then all that will happen is that touchdown will feel significantly
different, a few fuel-tank seams might weep tears of fuel, and the
engineers might rib you for causing them extra work.

Of course, you will have admitted your sins to them, written up the bird
and waited anxiously while they carry out a heavy landing inspection.
That check will progressively indicate, item by item, whether you’ve
permanently bent anything, or whether they need to check more deeply
because of what they’ve found. Most of the time, you will not have bent
anything and the procedure is quite perfunctory. It could happen that
you’ve bottomed out the oleos and witness-marked an indicator. Rarely
will a heavy landing blow or even scrub a tire, let alone damage the
gear or airframe.

After the latest FedEx MD-10 burning on runway 18R at Memphis, Tennessee
on July 30, the company’s pilots might be forgiven for surrendering up
the above article of faith. In fact, they may be pondering why their
“Mad Dogs” are so lame that their legs collapse at will. FedEx pilots
are made of sterner stuff, so they will just take it on the chin and
polish their landing techniques, making sure to properly adrenalize
before each and every landing. “Failure is not an option” I seem to
recall someone famous saying, while baying at the moon. Evidently the
Mad Dogs 10 and 11 never got that message. They appear to be
particularly weak-kneed.

It Seldom Happens In the latest accident, the left landing gear failed
on the airplane during landing, sending sparks into dry grass beside the
runway that ignited a fire. Three people on board used an emergency
landing chute on the right side of the plane to safely escape, avoiding
the burning engine on the other side. Fire crews responded quickly and
doused the fire with foam, containing it to the engine area and
preventing it from spreading to the rest of the aircraft. The plane,
identified as FedEx Flight 630, had departed from Seattle, Washington.
Les Dorr, an FAA official in Washington D.C., said landing gear failure
is a rare occurrence. “A landing gear collapse on a large transport-type
aircraft is a pretty rare event,” Dorr said. “It seldom happens.”
The MD-10 was a valiant attempt by FedEx/MD (and then MD’s takeover
merchant Boeing) to use up the remaining life in the plentiful old DC-10
airframes by upgrading the cockpit to an MD-11 style two-man standard,
simultaneously rewiring and freighter-converting it. Like the two-man
MD-11F operation, it promised to be a very economical long-haul
freighter. The DC-10-10 had a Max Gross Weight increase to 446,000lbs
and the DC-10-30 to a massive 580,000lbs in the Series 30 MD-10. That
boost in cargo-carrying capability required “structural changes”.

The Advanced Common Flight Deck was intended to allow FedEx pilots to
operate either the MD-10 or MD-11 interchangeably, for maximum
scheduling efficiencies. However, when the FedEx pilots got their hands
on the MD-10, they protested vociferously. They considered that there
were sufficient dissimilarities as to make any dual qualification
unsafe. Unlike the 757/767 and the A340/A330 combos, the MD-10/MD-11
basic designs and handling qualities were of two entirely different
eras. The company didn’t agree and the FAA and Boeing backed FedEx, so
the pilots got to operate both. One wonders whether the Flight
Operations Quality Assurance (FOQA) program has since disclosed any
lingering safety interludes for those who fly both, interchangeably.
FOQA regularly checks data-recorders for any pilot handling quirks that
would be better if they were ironed out with counseling or added
training. One could also speculate as to whether any such handling
difficulties, particularly the touchdown, might have carried over into
longer term aircraft fatigue damage. The MD-11 has had to undergo a
number of flight-control software patches in an attempt to cure it of
some of its near-the-ground vices. It is reportedly very unforgiving of
a one gear first hard touchdown, as the pilot of a Mandarin Airlines
passenger flight found on his arrival in Hong Kong on the night of Aug.
22, 1999.

Turning Turtle That aircraft lost its right gear and wing, inverted and
caught fire, killing 3 passengers.

The pilot had disconnected the autopilot but left the autothrottle
engaged, which failed to compensate for the gusting crosswind. An
amateur video showed the aircraft’s quite normal approach in turbulent
conditions, followed by a high-rate descent beginning at around 50 ft RA
(radar altimeter). Wind-shear had caused a sudden loss of around 20kts
and the autothrottle failed to respond. That was the height it was
software-scheduled to throttle-close for the flare (or landing
round-out).

Near to max landing weight, and in an unremarkable less than 4 degree
right wing down attitude (for the crosswind), the aircraft hit with a
high rate of descent. This allowed the RH oleo to bottom out, the #3
engine to touch the runway and break off, taking the RH wing with it.
Looking at the relative positions of the wing-gear and the engines
(further outboard), it’s not surprising that the weight of the engine
should allow its downward inertia to lever the wing off above the gear
in a hard touchdown.

It’s this lack of robustness that gives the MD-11/MD-10 its undoubtedly
unique characteristic, for a wide-body, of being able to shed a wing and
achieve an inverted attitude on the ground. Other MD-11 pilots expressed
surprise that an experienced MD-11 driver would have left the
autothrottle engaged in these conditions. Most had found that the
programmed throttle closure in the flare could often, as in this case,
prove to be the opposite of what conditions (particularly rapid onset
wind gusts) demanded. The only other available solution for arresting a
high-rate descent near the ground is backstick. Unfortunately in the
MD-11, that means an automatic hard tailstrike and a million dollar
damage bill. Pilots are taught to freeze the pitch attitude and “fly
out” of any high rate descent near the flare with added power. That
might kill the speed bleed and extend the landing roll but it precludes
the tailstrike. In the Mandarin case, with a nasty wind-shear, the
throttles auto-closing at just the wrong moment and the pilot
pre-programmed NOT to use backstick, the accident deal was already
closed.

On Dec. 21, 1992 a Martinair DC-10 PH-MBN touched down hard in gusty
conditions at Faro, Portugal. It was again a right gear first touchdown
-- and the wing separated. On July 31, 1997, a FedEx MD-11F touched down
hard at Newark, New Jersey with a 500 ft/min descent rate and a slight
right bank. The right wing-spar broke and the aircraft ended up on its
back, burning. The finding was that the landing was over-controlled and
a go-round should have been carried out. On Dec. 18, 2003 it happened
again, to an MD-10 at Memphis on runway 36R, after a quite stable
approach. A young F/O never quite got the drift off and touched down
firmly on the right gear with a very slightly banked attitude. The RH
gear collapsed and the aircraft burnt out. The NTSB faulted the pilot
and the flight captain, who was also a check and training pilot. The
company changed its training regimen after that accident.

The common denominator for the generic DC-10 and its spawned sub-types
would seem to be an underbuilt wing that allows a coupled engine
inertia/main-gear response to break the wing or gear-mounts, in any
slightly wing-down, harder than normal arrival. When combined with the
aircraft’s heightened pitch sensitivity and the
MD-10-10/MD-10-30/MD-11F’s quirky differences, it would seem that a
FedEx pilot goes frequently in harm’s way and must work harder than most
to “keep it all together".
 
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belchfire

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First, my condolences to the families and friends of the crew. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

I've read somewhere that shortly after one of the other hard landing incidents in the MD-11 that Boeing (having bought MD) came up with a software "Patch" for the automatic portions of the stab trim. The aircraft that spurred the software patch had been repaired after a previous hard landing.

I wish I had the references now...
 

capt_zman

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One does not dare do so now even though to this MD11 pilot it is quite obvious what they did wrong.

This was human error.

tj
I'm glad you were there and know everything that transpired in the final 500 ft.

Let the professionals dissect what went wrong before throwing stones and pointing fingers, no matter how "obvious" it is to you.

Wasn't too long ago everyone blamed "human error" on an MD10 gear collapse in Memphis. Turned out to be faulty MX and parts. Pretty "obvious", huh?
 

Fedora

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One does not dare do so now even though to this MD11 pilot it is quite obvious what they did wrong.

How does that saying go? Aviation, like the sea, is unforgiving of any incapacity or negelect? This was human error.

tj
TJ marches to a strange drummer. He was recently banned from a Gemini crew forum for making callous remarks about hoping that crews trying to re-open Gemini should "crash and burn". Very strange.
 

BigPappa

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Mucho!
The NTSB will figure out what happened. This was not an inexperienced crew. These people have been flying the MD-11 for a while.

I remember when sully and his crew took the A320 for a dive in the Hudson; most pilots (and engineers) thought that it would've been impossible for BOTH engines to quit at the same time, yet it ended up being the one in a million type scenario.

It will be interesting to see what they find here.

Speculate all you want, yet you don't know until you know!

RIP our fellow aviators.
 
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