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Passenger distribution did not match the load sheet distribution.

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Luckily this had a good outcome. Luckily people went back and researched why this happened. Hopefully the "technical issue" has now been resolved. (www.bbc.com) עוד...

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Highflyer1950
Highflyer1950 9
One might have expected the in-charge F/A to notice the passengers clumped at the front of the plane and empty towards the back? A quick call to the rear F/A station could have confirmed this and then notification to the flight deck would have solved any issue. The F/A’s are the cockpits’ eyes acting as a last line of defense against abnormalities prior to departure. There is so much more to the job than coffee, tea, seat belt, O2 demos , arm doors & cross check.
bobkamman
Bob Kamman 1
The pilots aren't allowed to take a look back in the cabin? I wonder what airlines like Southwest do, without seat assignments and passengers determining their own load arrangement.
Highflyer1950
Highflyer1950 1
I would guess that with such short routes and sufficient load factors, possibly above 75% the C of G, stays within the envelope......but it’s only a guess!
xtoler
Larry Toler 1
The flight attendants do a zone count in the cabin, report back to either pilot and pax are moved as needed for weight and balance for take off.
ravanviman
hal pushpak 2
Assuming the crew also accurately know where the baggage and cargo arms and weights are..
xtoler
Larry Toler 1
That is a very valid point. The pilots have a calculator or wheel chart to calculate weight and balance, but to actually know what's really in the cargo hold is a different matter. It's not like the Air Force where thete are combined pax and cargo in the same cabin and the loadmaster double checks everything is where it should be.I brought that subject up in initial FA training and the instructor didn't know how to respond.
Highflyer1950
Highflyer1950 1
I wonder if the A-321/A-320 use the containerized method for loading baggage or cargo. Then the load sheet would show the location and weights. I think it was just the pax seating chart that was never updated from the A-320?
rad2
Roger Deeringer 1
Back in the '90s, had a flight, ORD-NRT, on United. Had a J Class seat, but after the doors were closed, the F/As went through the cabin and asked the biggest PAX they could find and moved us to 1st. Seemed that there were only two paid 1st seats sold and the pilots wanted a near normal front end load.
As soon as the seat belt sign was turned off, we "visitors were asked to resume our ticketed seats. In my case, a fellow larger than I had been asked to take my Business Class seat, He was "rewarded" with a handful of mini Jack Daniels.
There was no redistribution of load for landing. The front end guys must have leveled the load with fuel movements. All in all, a good flight :)
FrankHarvey
Frank Harvey 1
If the cvr had more than 30 minutes it would make interesting listening when they hit vr and the nose wouldn't come up. Must be nice to have a lot of runway.
RetiredCaptain
Jasper Buck 3
There should be at least two hours of voice on the CVR as required in ICAO Annex 6 “Operation of Aircraft”, Vol I and the minimum performance standards (MPS) qualification and documentation of European Organization for Civil Aviation Equipment (EUROCAE) document ED-112A, Minimum Operational Performance Specification for Crash Protected Airborne Recorder Systems. ED-112A sections specific to CVR systems are detailed in FAA Technical Standard Order (TSO) TSO-C123c. A CVR, installed in airplanes of a maximum certificated take-off mass of over 5 700 kg (12,500 lbs.) for which the individual certificate of airworthiness is first issued on or after 1 January 1990, should be capable of retaining the information recorded during at least the last two hours of its operation.

That pretty much cover all the Airbus products.

The question is did the Hungarian civil aviation authorities (if any) take the time and go to the trouble of analyzing the CVR and FDR data to determine just how the aircraft performed during the takeoff roll and initial climb (1st segment) and what takeoff and climb performance scenarios were possible with the out-of-balance condition the aircraft was operating with especially had they encountered an emergency at or after V1.

Best
FrankHarvey
Frank Harvey 1
Thanks for the reply. I was under the illusion that only 30 minutes was required.
I'm always very happy to learn the facts.
Again, Thanks.
Highflyer1950
Highflyer1950 1
If the Stab trim was set for evenly balanced light cabin load and then swap out for an A-321, the heavier front end loading probably required a more nose down pitch trim setting especially if a flex takeoff power setting was used?I suppose this would cause the aircraft to not respond normally at Vr at which time the PF increased to max power. The flip side scenario is a bit easier as the nose goes light prior to Vr and you wind up trimming forward while cursing the baggage loaders!
FrankHarvey
Frank Harvey 1
Interesting when the nose is light that you use the trim and not just forward pressure on the stick. As to this nose heavy incident, even if the PF increased power, he still needed more runway. And do today's engines need time to spool up ?
Highflyer1950
Highflyer1950 1
Referring to a past situation where the ground crew swapped cargo hold percentages. Generally, a 70/30 split on the heavy I flew, however, when a absent minded ground crew reverses the loading and you really have a 30/70 split, and at 80 kt the nose goes very light you know right away that the nose wheel will pop off the ground well before Vr. While maintaining forward pressure you roll in more forward trim to prevent it. Also, spool up time from a flex takeoff power setting to max power in counted in 2 - 4 seconds at most. This particular ac type had 4 cargo holds 1-70%, 2. overflow 3- 30% 4 - when #2 was full.
FrankHarvey
Frank Harvey 1
Hi Highflyer,
Thanks again for the explanation. I understand now using the stick to hold the nose where you want it and then trimming until there's no pressure. I had thought you meant just using the trimmer to move the nose. I had also assumed it would be extremely rare for baggage to mess up the c of g. I guess there's no longer a F/E out there on the tarmac checking on the loaders. As for the 2 - 4 second spool up time, its a lot quicker than what seemed to take forever on the low-bypass JT3Ds.
Thanks
xtoler
Larry Toler 1
After I've done a zone count in my cabin I report to one of the pilots where we people are seated. Usually I'm pretty good at distributing pax per aircraft on our EMB145's depending on model, but I'm not always right and most times I'm not sure how much extra weight we get in the rear cargo/baggage compartment. The pilots have the final say and I move pax around from there. I know a lot of F/A's and most pax doesn't really understand the importance of load planning. I wish there were better instruction during initial flight attendant training. My instruction was in USAF technical school and OJT training and then having. My training was primarily load planning C130's and 141's.
When I do have to move pax around they get nervous but I do brief the pax on why this is done and reassure them it's no big deal.
FrankHarvey
Frank Harvey 2
Its good to know that there are knowledgeable F/As attentive to the a/c weight and balance.
Highflyer1950
Highflyer1950 0
Nothing like changing the trim setting on the while in the go?
Highflyer1950
Highflyer1950 4
Let’s try that again. Nothing like changing the trim setting while on the go?
RetiredCaptain
Jasper Buck 1
"The AAIB said it would not disclose the name of the airline involved."

It was easy enough to find out. A quick search of a couple of aviation databases reveals that it was Wizz Air a Hungarian airline. https://wizzair.com/en-gb#

Another take on the incident:
https://simpleflying.com/wizz-a321-out-of-cg/

Had the runway length been shorter and/or an engine loss occurred at or after V1 it may not have worked out so well.

Best

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