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United Airlines runs off runway after fire?

BILL LUMBERG

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Good Job UAL Crew...just like the SWA crew!!!!

Isn't this the second UAL A320 to have a total electrical failure (TPA 2009?) and the crew was able to bring it around safe?? Kudos to both, but somebody needs to get into MX auditing to see if this is systemic, like SWA.
 

instructordude

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Does anybody where they landed in the touchdown zone and possibly the speed?
 

elcid

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"Complete loss of instruments" or on standby instruments? Just wondering. I'm not sure how you fly a PAR in IMC with no instruments. Does the airbus have an ISIS? Either way, nice job. Glad everyone is safe. These things come in three's. We're two down. Be safe out there.
 

ackattacker

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"Complete loss of instruments" or on standby instruments? Just wondering. I'm not sure how you fly a PAR in IMC with no instruments. Does the airbus have an ISIS? Either way, nice job. Glad everyone is safe. These things come in three's. We're two down. Be safe out there.

I think that beyond what's on the tapes any further real info is going to take a while. I'm guessing "complete loss of instruments" probably is not completely accurate but could be loss of the primary flight displays, which implies AC buses 1 and 2 and AC Ess are lost. Obviously they still had some buses active since they were communicating with ATC but it's highly likely that they were in a severely degraded state which could impact normal braking, spoilers, and reverse as well.

For those curious about the quirks of the airbus electrical system, the following read is enlightening:

http://www.aaib.gov.uk/cms_resources.cfm?file=/4-2009_G-EZAC.pdf
 

Golden Falcon

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dougdrvr

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"Complete loss of instruments" or on standby instruments? Just wondering. I'm not sure how you fly a PAR in IMC with no instruments. Does the airbus have an ISIS? Either way, nice job. Glad everyone is safe. These things come in three's. We're two down. Be safe out there.

Complete loss of instruments is also code for "losing all the magenta stuff" :p
 

Captzaahlie

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Rough67

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NTSB Advisory
National Transportation Safety Board
Washington, DC 20594
April 7, 2011
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FIRST UPDATE ON NTSB INVESTIGATION INTO UNITED AIRLINES RUNWAY EXCURSION INCIDENT IN NEW ORLEANS

The National Transportation Safety Board continues to make progress in its investigation of United Airlines flight 497, which returned to the airport on April 4, 2011, in New Orleans, shortly after take-off due to automated warnings of smoke in the equipment bay. The airplane's nose wheel exited the side of runway 19 upon completing the landing roll and an emergency evacuation was conducted.

The NTSB team, comprised of 3 NTSB investigators and representatives from the designated parties and advisors, arrived on scene April 4 to document and examine the aircraft and retrieve the data and voice recorders. Two other NTSB investigators, specializing in operational factors and maintenance factors, traveled to various locations to review pertinent documentation and records and conduct interviews.

After documenting the condition of the equipment in the electronics bay, investigators applied limited electrical power to various systems on the airplane. At this time, the preliminary examination has not revealed any signs of burning, indications of smoke or other anomalous system findings.

The NTSB operations group completed interviews of the flight crew yesterday. The crew indicated that, at about 4000 feet, the airplane's electronic centralized aircraft monitoring (ECAM) system provided an autothrottle-related message, then an avionics smoke warning message, accompanied by instructions to land. Despite receiving this message, neither crew member recalled smelling smoke or fumes during the flight.

The captain indicated that he used the electronic checklist for the avionics system smoke warning indication, which included shutting down some of the airplane's electrical system. The crew reported that the first officer's display screens went blank, the ECAM messages disappeared, the cockpit to cabin intercom stopped functioning, and the air-driven emergency generator deployed. The captain said that he took control of the airplane at this point and managed the radios while the first officer opened the cockpit door to advise the flight attendants of the emergency and their return to New Orleans airport.

The crew also noted to investigators that they requested runway 10 for landing, but were told the runway was not available due to the presence of construction vehicles. The captain said that he was able to use the airspeed, altimeter, and attitude information on his primary flight display during the return to the airport, and that he ordered an evacuation after landing.

As previously reported, the airplane's forward right slide did not properly inflate during the emergency evacuation. After examining the evacuation slides, investigators found that the aspirator for the forward right-hand slide was partially blocked. The aspirator component is the mechanism for inflating the slide during an emergency evacuation. Investigators have retained the slide for further evaluation.

Preliminary reports provided to investigators suggest that the flight attendants did not smell or see smoke in the cabin, but observed the cabin lights turn off and the intercom system cease to function during the flight. Interviews of the cabin crew will be conducted after the investigators complete their on-scene work to more thoroughly document the cabin crew's observations and communications throughout the flight and emergency evacuation.

The cockpit voice recorder (CVR) and flight data recorder (FDR) arrived at NTSB headquarters in Washington, D.C. on April 5 and were successfully downloaded. The CVR is of good quality and captured approximately 7 minutes and 30 seconds of the incident flight. The FDR contained in excess of 25 hours of data and captured approximately 18 minutes of data relevant to the incident flight. Both the CVR and FDR stopped recording data prior to landing.

Investigators will remain on scene to complete their evaluation of the airplane and documentation of other factors in the incident.
 

Bringupthebird

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Sounds like they put it into Emergency Electrical configuration and it did what it was supposed to. Well done!
 

GuppyWN

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Sounds like they put it into Emergency Electrical configuration and it did what it was supposed to. Well done!

I suspect the loss of electrics somehow affected the steering cause there was about 2-3,000 ft of runway remaining straight ahead of them when they veered off the side of the runway.

Gup
 

bluechunks

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I suspect the loss of electrics somehow affected the steering cause there was about 2-3,000 ft of runway remaining straight ahead of them when they veered off the side of the runway.

I think if you free-fall the gear you lose NWS.
In the emergency electrical configuration on earlier A320's the RAT (Ram Air Turbine, photo) is extended and powers the essential busses (AC & DC) until gear extension at which point the electric beast is flying on batteries only. This is because the older RAT design is ineffective at lower speeds while newer A320's have an improved RAT where this is not an issue.

Only a handful of very few key components remain powered on battery and anti-lock braking and nose wheel steering are excluded.
 
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