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China Air 747-400 almost Crashes Into Building!!

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hey there all, Just wanted to let you guy's in on a Very Scary Moment in HNL Intl Today!! A China Air 747-400 Coming in from Narita-Hnl, was making a LDA Approach to Runway 26L at HNL Intl, since we had Kona Winds, and somehow the Pilots got very Low and To far Inland Over the Honolulu Buildings District! 1 Eye witness from the gound saw the Plane very low and Loud, and thought it was another 9/11 was happening!! And a Lady in the 4Th Floor Apt of the building the Plane narrowly misses said she Could see Passengers in the Planes windows!! It was that Close, another Witness said that the Plane's Wingtips came Within 30FT of the building! And this was a Visual Approach!! Very SCARY Stuff! Would have been another Bad Mark on CHina Airlines again!! not too good! the FAA was looking to talk to the Crew, and China Airlines said they had no Comment!! Imaagine a 747-400 Waking you up at 6:30a.m and looking out the Window to see the Plane that close to buildings!! Just wanted to let you know on a very Scary day here at HNL! MIKE-:)

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Mike, Did you hear that on the news, or get any confirmation? I live right downtown in a highrise and heard nothing about it. It was blowing a howling kona this morning and I watched some of the JAL birds doing the LDA to 26L with a significant crab angle. But as you know the approach for the reef runway in this direction is completely offshore, at least 1000 yds offshore near the area of Honolulu and well offshore even at Sand Island. An airplane would have to be way, way off the localizer to get near any buildings of any significant height, since the approach is over water until the threshold. No aircraft could get that close to any of the buildings of Honolulu on this approach and make a successful landing. I'd be skeptical unless someone had a video of the approach or the FAA reconstructed the path from the airplane's box. It's pretty much over the top.aloha,chris conklin

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Hey Chris! Yeah i heard it on the Local New's! it's also all over the International news too! Well the ATC here said that the Plane was way of course and to close In-land, so they told him to Cancel the landing and go around!? But they did interview witneses at the Condo that it almost Clipped with it's wings! This was about at 6:30a.m-7:00am. in the morning! It was a very close Call, and gald that it did not Crash! nver know sometimes with those China Airlines Pilot's! they are kinda scary withh all the accidents China Airlines had recently! I know i will never fly them! laterz, MIKE-:)

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Wow...I'll have to follow this one...if what is being reported by eyewitnesses is true, this aircraft was way, way off the approach path. The LDA approach is on a localizer over the ocean until about 2nm and 600 ft and then a descending left turn to final. The whole purpose of the approach is to keep the aircraft offshore and away from Waikiki and downtown Honolulu. Maybe because of the conditions (gusty 20-30 kt crosswind component), the pilots decided to do a more traditional approach and deviate to the right of the localizer, because it would have been more than two dots to the right for them to get near any buildings...thanks

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I read about this in todays Honolulu Advertiser...I was shocked!!!I live around Ala Moana and I see all the airplanes come in for runway 26.Thank goodness I was sound asleep when this happened!!

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Well, it doesn't just happen to airlines like China Air. A few years back, a UAL 744 almost plowed into San Bruno mountain coming out of San Francisco (westward departure) after a compression stall in one of the in-board engines. The 1st Officer, flying the leg, compensated for the loss of thrust with the ailerons instead of rudders. On the 747, the ailerons get an assist from the spoilers to help break the lift on the down side wing at low speeds, further reducing lift and speed just as the plane was coming up on the hill. With the relief crew screaming "rudder! rudder!" and "pull up! pull up!" the plane just cleared the hill and several housing developments on its side. It turned out that many of UAL's long-haul international pilots were not getting enough take-off and landing practice, as they might fly only one or two of each a month given that they are relieved in mid-flight by a fresh pair of pilots. Back to the simulators for a lot of them!

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I'm pretty sceptical of the eyewitness accounts. Yep, the plane may well have deviated from a normal approach and that would surprise residents who wouldn't expect to see a 747 there. These things are pretty big and its hard to judge relative speed and distance. I've nearly crashed my car on the M4 near Heathrow before now - it's very distracting to see a row of heavies descending apparently right next to you. In reality they are quite far away and moving twice as fast as you, but it looks like they're practically within touching distance and hardly moving at all. You can have 12 eyewitnesses to an accident and each one will have a different story. Each one will exaggerate. If an eyewitness is a pilot, you might stand a chance of a slightly more accurate assessment of what happened. Someone with no aviation experience will see something completely different.

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>I'm pretty sceptical of the eyewitness accounts. These things are >pretty big and its hard to judge relative speed and distance. Thats true. Just watch a 747 or C5 take off. It looks like it doing abou 40mph, and then suddenly its in the air. Your brain just says No Way! :-hah

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I would tend to agree, and the general consensus here in Hawaii is that the "wingtip missed my condo by 30 feet" statement by one of the eyewitnesses is clearly not substantiated by the facts.Although being a mile off course could put the airplane over Honolulu proper and even over the western part of Waikiki, since the normal LDA approach does parallel the beach and is not that far offshore.The key is altitude...on a normal 3 degree glideslope an aircraft would be at more than 1500 feet HAG when over Waikiki, way above the tops of Century center and any other tall buildings. It's probably the fact that seeing a heavy airplane in the approach pattern over town is so unusual that sparked the outcry. I would have thought that any of our many residents who have lived in Hong Kong wouldn't have even rolled over if they'd lived anywhere near the approach over the apartments on the HK checkerboard approach to Kai Tak!I'm hoping the FAA will use the black box stuff and plot out the actual path and then publish to reassure folks here...

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Yup I agree Chris! I hoe when the FAA review's Radar and Atc tapes about the China 747 that this will be put to rest! So no blaming can come from the China Air people, which they were saying was a JAL, or Northwest 747 plane that almost hit the building! So the facts can be shown, and this put to rest, and hopefully it never happens again! MIKE-:)

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