Monday, April 21, 2014

Los Angeles-Honolulu Flight Returns After Trouble Report

An American Airlines flight from Los Angeles International Airport to Honolulu has landed safely back at LA after reporting engine trouble.

Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Ian Gregor says Flight 283 took off Monday morning when the pilot declared an emergency and returned to the airport. The Boeing 757 landed safely shortly after 11:30 a.m.

American Airlines spokesman Andrew Christie says the flight reported that an engine generator failed. However, he says the jetliner, with 190 passengers and crew on board, was using both engines when it landed.

The FAA initially said one engine was out.


Denver-bound Southwest flight makes emergency landing in Kansas City

DENVER — A Southwest Airlines flight headed from Indianapolis to Denver made an emergency landing in Kansas City Monday after an apparent hydraulic fluid leak, the airline said in a statement.

Following an alarm in the cockpit, SWA Flight 3 landed about 3:30 p.m. local time with no complications and no injuries, Southwest said. The plane was taken out of service, and some 127 passengers were moved to a later flight.

“Emergency crews verified no immediate threat and our Crew taxied the aircraft to the gate under its own power, where 127 Customers and five Crew members deplaned through the jet bridge into the terminal,” a Southwest spokeswoman said.

The cause of the alarm was not immediately known.


Federal safety report lists 59 incidents at Vancouver International Airport in 2013: Radio controlled helicopter had ‘serious risk of collision’ with jetliner

A radio-controlled helicopter posed a “serious risk of collision” with an Air Canada passenger jet during its landing approach, according to federal aviation safety reports for last year at Vancouver International Airport.

On March 29, the Air Canada Boeing 777-300 was flying at 600 metres when the crew observed the radio-controlled helicopter pass within 20 to 30 metres of the aircraft at the same altitude. The crews of subsequent aircraft also reported seeing it flying above 450 metres. RCMP were dispatched but no helicopter or operator could be found.

Lew Potts of the Sea Island Model Flying Club, based in Delta, said most enthusiasts of gas or electric model aircraft belong to a regulated club offering liability insurance and operating usually at altitudes no higher than about 120 metres.

But he said radio-control helicopters — which can have an aluminum or titanium frame, fibreglass shell and carbon-fibre rotor — do not require landing strips and in this case may have involved a “rogue operator” who wanted to test the limits of the aircraft.

Noting that some models can be the size of an eagle, he said: “You wouldn’t want it sucked into an airplane, that’s for sure.”

Bill Yearwood, regional manager of the federal transportation safety board in Richmond, confirmed that a remote-control helicopter could have a similar impact to a large bird. It poses a potential threat not just to an engine, but to windshields — especially on smaller aircraft and full-sized helicopters — and to external controls.

Turbulence also figured prominently last year in a list of 59 reportable incidents from YVR compiled by the safety board for The Vancouver Sun.

During a Sept. 3 Air Canada Jazz flight from Smithers to Vancouver, the turbulence was so swift and severe that a flight attendant and passenger hit their heads on the ceiling and a passenger also scraped an arm on a trolley. The event lasted only two seconds while the de Havilland Dash 8 flew at 7,500 metres.

There were also 11 reports of wake turbulence, which is caused by aircraft moving through the air and can be especially dangerous for smaller aircraft travelling behind large jets on calm days. During windy days the turbulence created by large jets can dissipate in seconds, but on flat-calm days it can linger for several minutes, posing an invisible threat to planes closely following the same flight path.

On Aug. 1, a Jazz de Havilland Dash 8 was on arrival flying at 3,000 metres and about eight kilometres behind a much larger Air Canada Airbus A320 when the crew reported “quite a bounce” and the airplane moving around for 15 to 30 seconds resulting in the crew disengaging the autopilot.

On Aug. 3, a Pacific Coastal Airlines Saab-Fairchild SF 340A was on landing approach descending through 850 metres when it hit “severe turbulence” resulting in a “nose up deflection and 45 to 60 degree roll to right,” but no injuries or aircraft damage.

Incidents of wake turbulence are expected to increase with more aircraft flying in the Vancouver area and with improved navigational systems that allow planes to more accurately follow the same precise landing approaches.

If wake turbulence is encountered at low elevation, suddenly jostling the plane up and down, it may be impossible for the crew to regain control before striking the ground.

That’s what happened in July 2009 to a Canadian Air Charters twin-engined Piper Chieftain on landing approach to YVR. Captain Jeremy Ryan Sunderland, 28, and first officer Mathew Douglas Pedersen, 23, died in the crash near Bridgeport and No. 5 roads.

The turbulence from an Air Canada Airbus A321 about 1.5 nautical miles ahead resulted in “upset and loss of control at an altitude that precluded recovery,” the safety board report found.

Four reportable incidents involve bird strikes, including a Japan Airlines Boeing 767-300 en route to Narita on March 17 that aborted takeoff due to a possible bird strike in the left engine. All eight main tires deflated, requiring water to be applied to cool the brakes. On Nov. 2, an Air Canada Boeing 767-300 bound for Korea hit a small flock of birds. The crew noticed increased vibrations and elected to dump fuel in the Strait of Georgia and return to the airport.

There were six incidents involving smoke or faulty smoke detection equipment, including an incident March 12 in which smoke filled the cockpit of a Pacific Coastal Airlines Beech 1900C causing the crew to declare an emergency. An audio amplifier was to blame.


Hays Regional Airport (KHYS), Kansas

Hays Fire Department crews will train at airport Tuesday, April 22

From 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, members of the Hays Fire Department will be training at Hays Regional Airport.

Crews will be practicing procedures to control aircraft fires as part of annual refresher training required by the Federal Aviation Administration.

Using a mobile aircraft firefighting trainer from the University of Missouri Fire and Rescue Training Institute, firefighters will practice attacking fires surrounding a crashed aircraft as well as fires in engines, tires/brakes and the interior of an aircraft. The mobile aircraft fire trainer is a large aircraft simulator with LPG fueled fires that create realistic situations for firefighter practice.

Because this training is being conducted inside the restricted areas of the airport, the public is unable to observe.

The city of Hays provides firefighting and emergency response services at the airport.


Tuxedni Bay, Cook Inlet - Alaska

Father, son hole up in cabin after aircraft accident

A father and son spent Sunday night in a cabin on the west side of Cook Inlet after an aircraft accident grounded them. According to Alaska State Troopers, 34-year-old David Hill and his 15-year-old son left the Birchwood Airport, north of Eagle River, at about 3 p.m. Sunday. A few hours later, their SPOT emergency beacon was activated in the vicinity of Tuxedni Bay, on the west side of Cook Inlet, across from the Kenai Peninsula. Hill sent a satellite text message to his wife that the aircraft had been "bent" and that he and the teen would spend the night in a cabin near the crash site. 

Troopers responded Monday morning around 7 a.m. and reported finding the two uninjured. The aircraft had been caught in a "ground loop" -- in which one of an aircraft's wings rises while the other approaches the ground, often striking the ground with a wing tip, causing the plane to spin while on the ground, during taxiing, landing or takeoff. In this case, the ground loop caused damage to the wing and tail.



Alaska State Troopers said a father and son from Eagle River were uninjured after damaging their plane near Tuxedni Bay Sunday.

The emergency locator beacon on the PA-18 Super Cub was activated shortly after 9:30 p.m. Sunday, according to trooper dispatch, and investigation revealed the beacon belonged to 34-year-old David Hill. When contacted by troopers, Hill’s wife said he had flown from Birchwood Airport around 3 p.m. with their 15-year-old son, bound for the west side of Lower Cook Inlet. Troopers said Hill sent a message to his wife shortly after the emergency beacon activation, telling her the plane was “bent” but there were no injuries. He and his son would spend the night at a nearby cabin, Hill said via text.

Nighttime flying restrictions prevented AST from launching a rescue Sunday night, troopers said, so Helo 3 responded to Tuxedni Bay around 7 a.m. Monday morning. Both Hill and his son were located and flown back to the Birchwood Airport, and troopers said investigation showed their plane damaged its wing and tail in a ground loop Sunday night.

National Transportation Safety Board officials were notified of the crash, troopers said.


American Aviation AA-1 Yankee Clipper, N481HY: Accident occurred April 21, 2014 in Peyton, Colorado

NTSB Identification: CEN14LA221
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Monday, April 21, 2014 in Peyton, CO
Aircraft: AMERICAN AA 1, registration: N481HY
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On April 21, 2014, at 1422 mountain daylight time, an American AA-1, N481HY, veered off runway 15 and impacted runway signs and terrain at Meadow Lake Airport (FLY), Colorado Springs, Colorado. The airplane was destroyed by a postcrash fire. The airline transport pilot was uninjured. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot under 14 CFR Part 91 as a maintenance test flight. The flight was not operating on a flight plan. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight that originated at FLY about 1422 and was to remain in the airport traffic pattern for the flight.

The pilot, who was also the airplane owner, stated he performed preflight and pre takeoff checks of the airplane prior to a post owner-assisted annual inspection test flight. He departed from runway 15 for the first takeoff and remained in left closed traffic for touch and go landings. He performed the first landing to a full stop to test the airplane brakes and then taxied back to runway 15. He did not notice any anomalies with the airplane and tried to stay off the brakes during the taxi. He rechecked the magnetos and completed takeoff checks prior to a second takeoff on runway 15. During the second takeoff, the airplane accelerated on the main landing gear with the tail wheel off the ground. The airplane "aggressively veered left," and he applied full right rudder. The airplane struck a runway/taxiway sign before he was able to reduce the engine throttle. The airplane bounced and impacted terrain between runway 15 and a parallel taxiway while striking additional airport signs. The airplane came to a stop in a drainage ditch between the runway and taxiway and immediately caught fire. The airplane exploded about one minute after he evacuated the airplane.

The pilot said that he did not know what caused the post-accident fire, but that the fuel tanks were ruptured during the collision with the airport signs/terrain.

The pilot stated that the brake calipers were not removed during the owner-assisted annual inspection and when asked by the National Transportation Safety Board Investigator-In-Charge what maintenance work was performed, he said that he replaced the landing gear wheel bearings, tire tubes, and tires. He then said that the calipers were removed when asked if the calipers had to be removed to perform the maintenance items related to the wheel bearings, tire tubes, and tires. The brake fluid was last changed when he purchased the airplane about January 2011. He said that the annual inspection was performed in the hangar belonging to the mechanic with inspection authorization that certified the inspection. He said that the mechanic was present while the inspection work was performed.

The airplane, serial number 0048, was powered by a Lycoming O-320-A2B, serial number L-49225-27A, engine. The airplane underwent an owner-assisted annual inspection that was performed by the pilot. The airplane logbook entry for the annual inspection was made by an airframe and powerplant mechanic with inspection authorization at American Aviation Inc., Peyton, Colorado, and was dated April 2, 2014. The entry stated:

"Aircraft inspected IAW FAR 43 Appendix D. Replaced vacuum regulator filter B3-5-1. Stop drilled 2 small cracks on top canopy. Checked controls for travel and condition. Checked sears, belts and rails. C/W AD 72-06-02 on rudder and elevator control cables by inspection. No broken strands noted. C/W AD 72-07-10 on elevator bungee by inspection. C/W AD 75-09-07 mixture control wire by inspection. Replaced ELT Battery, next change date March 2016. C/W FAR 207D and checked good. See owners entries for cowl, wheels, brakes, tires, etc. Returned to service. Applicable AD's thru 04-02-14."

According to the Federal Aviation Administration inspector from the Denver Flight Standards District Office, the logbook entry for the inspection was not in accordance with regulatory requirements because there were no additional entries relating to "See owners entries for cowl, wheels, brakes, tires, etc." The inspector stated that all maintenance work must be entered and the authorizing mechanic must ensure that such entries are made.

Post-accident fire damage of the airplane precluded examination of the brake and landing gear systems.


Falcon fire crews were among emergency responders who rescued the pilot and put out a small grass fire next to the runway caused by the plane crash, which was reported about 2:20 p.m. Monday.

EL PASO COUNTY - A small plane has crashed at Meadow Lake Airport near Falcon, according to El Paso County Sheriff's Office.  The pilot, flying solo in an American Yankee single-seater airplane, was practicing take-offs and landings.  During one of the take-offs, the plane had a mechanical issue and "landed hard" immediately after take-off.  The pilot managed to get out of the plane before the plane caught fire.   The pilot is OK, but the plane is a complete loss.

A pilot was uninjured after his plane crashed and burst into flames at the Meadow Lake Airport near Peyton, according to the El Paso County Sheriff's Office.

The pilot was repeatedly taking off and landing at the airport. The sheriff's office say since the last take-off there was a mechanical issue which made the plane "land hard" just after it took off. The plane burst into flames, but the pilot was able to get out.

The El Paso County Sheriff's Office is doing the initial investigation and will refer the crash to the FAA and NTSB.

EL PASO COUNTY, Colo. -    The El Paso County Sheriff's Office says the pilot of a small plane that burst into flames after a hard landing at the Meadow Lake Airport escaped without injuries.

The incident happened at 2:22 p.m. on Monday, April 21, 2014.

The sheriff's office says the pilot was doing take-offs and landings when something went wrong.

The plane experienced some sort of mechanical malfunction during one of the take-offs then landed hard moments later.

The sheriff's office says the pilot, who was not hurt in the hard landing, was able to get away from the plane before it burst into flames.

Plane makes emergency landing near Spangle, Washington

SPANGLE, Wash.--A small plane made an emergency landing outside of Spangle around 7:30 p.m. Sunday night.

 The plane made a hard emergency landing near the intersection of Spangle Waverly Road and South Dunn.

The pilot had to be extricated. A fire official said the pilot is in his 60’s.

The pilot was taken to the hospital to be treated for injuries.

The Spokane County Sheriff’s Office said the FAA would not be investigating because the plane is an ultra-light.

Pilot Taken To Hospital After Plane Crash In Spangle  

A pilot is in the hospital after he was forced to make an emergency landing near the Spangle Airstrip.

Spokane County Sheriffs Deputies say the pilot was transported to the hospital.

It's not known how badly he was injured or why he was forced to make an emergency landing.