146

From the flightradar24 playback, it appears to have been an encounter with Etihad Airways 171. Your flight (Alaska) was at FL360, while the opposing was at FL370. Therefore, there was 1000 feet of vertical separation between them, which is typically considered safe when operating with RVSM, Reduced Vertical Separation Minima rules (see other answers). I ...


65

If you had an engine fire, even though it may be "out", you want your airplane on the ground as soon as you possibly can. You don't know what structural damage is lurking as a result of the fire. Dumping fuel would take a fair amount time to get rid of any significant amount. So it's "Screw the landing gear. We're landing overweight".


55

On twin-engined aircraft the standard procedure for engine failure is to land as soon as possible. Since it is possible to land overweight—and aircraft are designed so that it is—delay to dump fuel is not considered acceptable, and no reasonable pilot would delay the landing when they can land already. Landing overweight is not really a big issue. The ...


51

It's unlikely. Because of RVSM, Reduced Vertical Separation Minima rules, the vertical distance between airplanes passing each other is only 1000 ft. If you were in the flight deck so you could see out front, you'd be having a wonderful time freaking out because airplanes on the same airway pass above and below going the other direction only 1000 ft away. ...


47

Not only is it possible but it happens. This is formally called a "runway incursion" and it does happen like 2005 Logan Airport runway incursion or the B733 / vehicle, Amsterdam Netherlands, 2010. Skybrary has a full list you can find here which is quite lengthy and includes a full section for Vehicle Incursion.


43

Having a small bird in a cockpit, or anywhere on board, would not be a problem during a normal flight because a normal flight should have a wide safety margin. However, a situation can change extremely rapidly from safe-and-normal to heavy workload to full-emergency due to any number of factors, including weather, mechanical issues, airspace/congestion, etc....


30

As jwenting said, it's unlikely to happen for many reasons, and if it does, the participants are even less likely to admit it since doing so could get them in trouble both professionally, and with a government regulatory agency for endangering safety. I seem to remember the FAA taking action against a pilot who posted photographs of himself flying with ...


28

There are indeed only two 'official' classifications of aviation incidents, which are defined in ICAO Annex 13. Accident. An occurrence associated with the operation of an aircraft which takes place between the time any person boards the aircraft with the intention of flight until such time as all such persons have disembarked, in which: a) a ...


26

Before we delve into this one. Let's be clear that it is much easier for us to sit at a computer with books in hand and review decisions made under urgent circumstances. Technically, the airport manager was correct here because per 14 CFR §91.126(b)(1): "Each pilot of an airplane must make all turns of that airplane to the left unless the airport ...


26

If it's a small bird bedded down quietly under the jumpseat, I don't think I'd worry about it too much. Presuming that you found out about it while up at altitude, the question is, are you safer cruising for XX minutes to get to your destination, descend, and land, or are you safer cruising for a shorter time while you return to your departure airport, ...


25

The "sudden upward tail movement" requires nothing more than a sudden unloading of the tail by removing that 90+ kg of man, parachute, and money. Even with an aircraft as large as a 727, suddenly removing 90+ kg from the tailcone airstair would result in a pretty noticeable shift in trim requirement, with additional tail downforce required to restore level ...


23

The claim that de-icing must have been done perfectly in Brussels or the plane would have crashed on take-off is patent nonsense. Ice on the aircraft degrades performance. A little bit of ice degrades performance a little bit; a lot of ice degrades performance a lot. It's perfectly possible that they took off from Brussels with slightly degraded performance, ...


23

In 1978 a B737 aborted a landing due to a snow plow on the runway. The aircraft crashed during the go around because one thrust reverser did not stow properly. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pacific_Western_Airlines_Flight_314


20

No, you were not nearly involved in an accident. If the flight crew is ready to go, an Airbus A320 takes about 40-50 seconds from the moment take-off clearance is given until lift-off. As soon as the aircraft is off the runway, the next one can land. On some busy airports, 60 seconds between take-off clearance and the next landing is a daily occurrence. ...


15

It completely depends on the accident and airport. For example if I crash land on 10R at San Francisco, and it's a fairly quiet time of day (eg below the capacity of one runway), the airport could just use 10L and continue operations as normal. Similarly if there was no wind they could just switch to 1/19 L/R instead of 10/28 L/R. I'll discuss this toward ...


14

When an aircraft has been given a clearance to land on a runway, that runway is exclusively reserved for the landing aircraft. (Except for LAHSO and "land after" operations, where only part of the runway is reserved for the landing aircraft). That means that no other aircraft or vehicle should be on that runway. In this case, clearly something went ...


13

In this case you guys were correct. Technically speaking traffic patterns at un-towered fields are not like ATC vectors from a tower. You are free to enter the pattern as you like (provided its in a safe manner) and joining it from the 45 to the downwind is simply what the FAA recommends. For that matter you technically don't have to make any radio calls and ...


12

Here it is: British Airways flight diverted to Bangor. At about 8 p.m. British Airways Flight 112, traveling from John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York City to Heathrow Airport in London, diverted to Bangor after smoke was discovered in the cockpit. Story was published on June 10th, 2004. Article says Wednesday night, so it should have ...


12

They're presently not in use. The accident investigators don't generally clamor for them, since there are very few questions that they can't answer with FDR and CVR readouts, where a CIR would provide useful information. The voices proposing them as a great idea tend to come from elsewhere -- from those who think they'd be a cool idea, but who don't fully ...


11

The Etihad flight was a 777, which is a much larger aircraft, but of almost the same proportions as the 737. Also living near an airport, I am well familiar with how difficult it is to gauge altitude. You see airplanes apparently moving at quite different speeds; actually a "slow" plane is moving at a similar speed but is larger and farther away. It's ...


10

The article you linked in your question mentions one incident - loss of separation - that's described in more detail here. The Aviation Herald is a good source of information on incidents and accidents but it has very few reports related to holding. There are several about low-fuel incidents because aircraft had to remain in the hold for a long time (...


10

I can think of 4 possible causes, 3 of which can probably be discounted. Tank venting. The fuel system is designed to deliberately "leak" if the tanks are overfilled or, the fuel expands due to temperature changes. Whilst I haven't seen this happen on a B767, I have seen it on numerous other types and when it happens, it does not gush out like it does in ...


10

This AOPA article "PROFICIENT PILOT LAZY-RUDDER SYNDROME" written about this incident, presents an interesting point of view on the matter, that basically good design and complacency leads to little regular rudder use so in emergencies its initially over looked. This pilot might have been affected by "lazy-rudder syndrome," the reluctance to use a ...


9

During the 2005 Logan Airport runway incursion, the First Officer noticed the other plane and realized that they could collide. Telling the Captain to "keep it down", he pushed the control column forward and passed under the other aircraft as it took off. During United Airlines Flight 232, the actions of the flight instructor for the type, Dennis E. Fitch, ...


9

In the EMB-145 I flew, the procedure for rapid depressurization was: RAPID CABIN DEPRESSUIZATION Aural Warning Condition ━━━━━━━━━━━━━ ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ Voice Message CABIN ALTITUDE INDICATION "CABIN" HAS EXCEEDED 10,000 FT AND ...


8

Apparently, yes, it has -- see Cessna 182 JT-A Certification 'Imminent'. As the article reports, the issues appeared to be related to the turbocharger, but I'm not sure how far (if at all) accident reports or details go beyond that.


8

Does it happen? Unlikely. The cockpit is a rather cramped environment with lots of sharp edges, knobs and switches sticking out, wouldn't be a lot of space for sexual encounters... Also, crews are usually rather busy. Flight crew during the phases before and after cruise, cabin crew during cruise. I'd not be surprised if there's the occasional romantic ...


8

Without an accident report to go on, we can't know what caused the situation they had. In fact, from the two links that were posted, we don't REALLY know exactly what they had. There is the description "we lost everything" from the radio, but that isn't consistent with the statement that they were able to fly headings. So what follows is a comment on the ...


8

The answer to your question is, in fact, "yes" - but the circumstances involved demonstrate just how difficult it is to make an aircraft's landing gear deploy without being commanded to do so. In 1985, CI006, a 747SP, experienced an uncommanded flameout of its #4 (right outboard) engine (something that particular engine was quite prone to doing) while ...


7

I'll answer from US ATC perspective having worked ATC at 3 different airports. First, I'll describe the alerts, then I'll describe training As with all things, each airport has different procedures for how they handle emergencies or accidents. For each airport, the airport operator and the ATC Tower will come up with numerous Letter's of Agreement for how ...


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