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Julian Bray provides: Opinion, comment, forward thinking speculation on Travel, Cruise & Aviation: conflict zones, terrorist impact, drone (UAV) issues, safety (black boxes, emergencies), airline operations, aviation finance, political implications, and all forms of incident risk. Worked at board level with several airline and aviation groups, including Alitalia, British Island Airways, British Airways, Galileo , British Aerospace, Skyways, former CEO City firm Leadenhall Assoc. Founder CNS City News Service. Director NTN Television News (joint co. with ITV Wales TWW) Debretts People 2017 and in launch edition of PRWeek Black Book.

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Friday, 11 September 2015

BA Boeing 777 fire 'multiple breaches of the engine case' says initial NTSB accident report. Passengers who recovered luggage, allegedly delaying evacuation may face charges.


The left GE90 fanjet engine of the BA Boeing777-236 aircraft that caught fire and exploded on the runway at Las Vegas airport had "multiple breaches [SIC] of the engine case", US air investigators have reported.  

A preliminary report into the incident by the US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) concluded that examination of the plane's left GE90 fanjet engine revealed the breaches [SIC]were “in the area around the high pressure compressor." The fanjet engines manufactured by General Electric specifically for the Boeing 777.   Click this link for our earlier detailed blog.
 
The NTSB preliminary report says that material was recovered from the runway path the Boeing 777 had taken, including several pieces of the high pressure compressor spool.

Further initial examination has revealed that the "left engine and pylon, left fuselage structure and inboard left wing were substantially damaged by the fire"


The NTSB has recovered both 'black boxes,' namely the flight data recorder, cockpit voice recorder and quick access recorder were all now being taken apart by the NTSB laboratory and downloaded for examination.

In another development, photographs of passengers who allegedly held up the emergency evacuation to recover cabin luggage from overhead bins, may be prosecuted say aviation sources. Experts are also calling for the overhead bins to be locked shut (central magnetic locking) during the entire flight and landing,  only released when the aircraft has landed and the engines switched off.

Julian Bray Aviation Expert writes: A somewhat excited caller to the blog, claiming to be an experienced pilot, however makes a point that the wind direction given to the pilot by the tower prior to departure, should also have been taken into consideration, when finally parking the plane!  Not certain how that would work as heavy braking was involved as many on Twitter have pointed out:

@aviationcomment There isn't a whole lot of room right off an active runway to manoeuvre perfectly for wind direction, kind of absurd #BA2276



We tend to agree, there isn't a whole lot of room right off an active runway and ATC were batting off a few as the fire unfolded..

The excited caller cited the Manchester British Airtours crash as the basis for his theory. On that basis he questioned our assertion that it was a 'textbook evacuation' as the pilot he says "should considered wind direction and altered the nose direction of the flaming aircrafts final position."  Essentially directing smoke and flames away from the fuselage.

We are happy to repeat the crew and cabin crew performed a 'textbook evacuation' but the investigators should perhaps factor in the prevailing wind conditions and more importantly why a protective cowl around the GE90 seems to have given little or no protection, and the halon fire extinguishing system seems not to have operated.

We've counselled the caller to make his points directly to the NTSC investigators and happy to pass on any such information but he suddenly became shy...   Our thoughts can only be pure speculation, but may assist the thinking and findings of the final accident investigation report. 

If the plane is indeed BAW2276, it is a Boeing 777-200 (specifically, a 777-236) with tail number G-VIIO. That plane was delivered to British Airways on Jan. 26, 1999. It is construction number 29320 and line number 182, according to Planespotters.net.


In 2004, five crew members and one passenger on G-VIIO were injured due to turbulence encountered during a flight from Orlando, Florida, to London, according to a report by the United Kingdom’s Air Accident Investigations Branch.


 


JULIAN BRAY +44(0)1733 345581, Journalist, Broadcaster, Aviation Security & Airline Operations Expert, Travel / Maritime & Cruise Industry, EQUITY, NUJ, Broadcast COOBE ISDN ++44 (0)1733 345020 (DUAL CODEC) SKYPE: JULIAN.BRAY.UK e&oe Cell: 07944 217476 or iPhone 0743 530 3145 www.aviationcomment.com B.B.C.#104764 53 http://feeds.feedburner.com/BraysDuckhouseBlog
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