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Alaska Airlines Wing Damage humour

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How does an airline stop the twittering public from going mad??? well, this is innovative....

 

 

From "The Australian":

 

A PASSENGER on an Alaska Airlines flight bound to Seattle looked out the window and saw what appeared to be a damaged area on the wing with a handwritten note saying, "we know about this".

The incident on July 28 drew comments on Twitter and other social media websites, but the Seattle-based airline says there was nothing to worry about.

Spokeswoman Bobbie Egan said Tuesday that it was an approved trim repair to the corner flap on the right wing. A maintenance technician wrote to let the flight crew know.

Egan says, "The message was the result of someone's good intentions'' but the wing note "was not appropriate and did not follow company procedures''.

The message was immediately removed, and Alaska apologises for any alarm it may have caused.

 

 

Read more: http://www.news.com....9#ixzz22urjPpJD

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"was not appropriate and did not follow company procedures''.

 

I don't have a problem with it, I think it is funny. I prefer it when airlines are more lighthearted like Southwest can be at times.

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I don't have a problem with it, I think it is funny. I prefer it when airlines are more lighthearted like Southwest can be at times.

 

Agree 100%...I had a good chuckle when I saw it.

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Same here, but by default, aviation enthusiast (and aviators/industry) are the only ones who would laugh at that. Joe Bob Travelers see that and think it's all over but the screaming.

 

 

Edit: now that i think about it.. just imagine if the most paranoid, scared to death, hate to fly passenger was seated there. Lord.

 

Edit PT2: reminds me of some aviation humor:

 

Pilot write up: Right engine missing.

 

Maintenance: Engine found. Under right wing.

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I don't think the issue is whether it was funny or not, but should a plane with that kind of damage to the wing be allowed to fly before fixing it? We all know deformities of the wing (Ice on the wing for example) could disrupt airflow over the wing. A gap like that could possibly do the same. Or compromise the structural integrity of the flight surface under the pressure of high altitude flight. I wouldn't want to find out at FL390! Remember Alaska Airlines has a past history of maintenance problems on their planes.

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I don't think the issue is whether it was funny or not, but should a plane with that kind of damage to the wing be allowed to fly before fixing it? We all know deformities of the wing (Ice on the wing for example) could disrupt airflow over the wing. A gap like that could possibly do the same. Or compromise the structural integrity of the flight surface under the pressure of high altitude flight. I wouldn't want to find out at FL390! Remember Alaska Airlines has a past history of maintenance problems on their planes.

 

An Airliner can fly with some systems INOP and do quite regularly. Obviously this one is on the list of items that meet the minimum standards to fly. To be honest, I've seen American Airlines MD82's that had wings in for worse shape then that and still in service. Their are some pretty messy looking wing doping patch jobs done on some of those MD82's.

 

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Honestly I would prefer to have the message. That tells me someone has looked at the damage, compared it with the manuals and confirmed it is safe to fly. Airplane manufacturers produce whole volumes of manuals that state exactly what damage is and isn't safe to fly with. In this case the damage probably didn't do anything other than create a drag penalty. A flap is not part of the primary structure of an airplane, so structural integrity is not a problem.

 

Fun fact for the day: an A320 (which this isn't, yes I know) can fly safely with the entire winglet missing.

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Fun fact for the day: an A320 (which this isn't, yes I know) can fly safely with the entire winglet missing.

 

Wow, can it really? Can't believe I didn't know that. Are you sure someone didn't just post a pic of an A320-100 and use that as saying it could fly without wing tip fences? I imagine if the wing hit something with such force that it shore off the fences that it'd be out of service till all the spars could be X-Rayed or Eddy-Current tested, and in such time have the fences replaced....

 

Ró.

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Wow, can it really? Can't believe I didn't know that. Are you sure someone didn't just post a pic of an A320-100 and use that as saying it could fly without wing tip fences? I imagine if the wing hit something with such force that it shore off the fences that it'd be out of service till all the spars could be X-Rayed or Eddy-Current tested, and in such time have the fences replaced....

 

Ró.

 

I think he may mean if a wing-tip was cleanly removed during maintenance leaving no damage to the wing then it could fly. If the aircraft hit something and it smashed off that would probably need checking first.

 

I think I would be more assured with the message there than nothing like as said at least then I know it has been looked at. A friendly little memo to the passengers on board screaming their heads off.

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Wow, can it really? Can't believe I didn't know that. Are you sure someone didn't just post a pic of an A320-100 and use that as saying it could fly without wing tip fences? I imagine if the wing hit something with such force that it shore off the fences that it'd be out of service till all the spars could be X-Rayed or Eddy-Current tested, and in such time have the fences replaced....

 

Ró.

 

 

I remember seeing a quote from a MEL floating around on the net (possibly on pprune.org) to the effect that an A320 could be operated with a fence removed. Of course you're the one with access to the proper source materials, so feel free to correct me on that. Obviously if there is reason to expect whatever removed the fence may have caused damage to the rest of your structure, you won't want to fly before getting it checked. Might be an option if you had a small bump and only want to remove the fence for repair.

 

Speaking as an aerospace engineer (i.e. taking an educated guess) a wing-tip fence dampens your wing-tip vortices, reducing your induced drag, and serves no structural purpose*. Thus the only effect of not having it is a small drag penalty.

 

*The only loads the fence has to support are the aerodynamic forces on the fence itself.

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What does the rest of the plane's writing say? 'But we don't know about the other things'? I wouldn't run around screaming, but if they have Wifi on board, I'd pick the next flights somewhere else.

 

Seriously, I like the humour itself, but I don't like to fly around with an attitude like 'well, the other stuff is still working'. There surely is a small list with inop or 'caution under condition xy' stuff on every commercial flight, but the image for the passengers always has to transport that you take any item seriously and aim for a blank list before taking off.

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Seriously, I like the humour itself, but I don't like to fly around with an attitude like 'well, the other stuff is still working'. There surely is a small list with inop or 'caution under condition xy' stuff on every commercial flight, but the image for the passengers always has to transport that you take any item seriously and aim for a blank list before taking off.

 

You would be surprised with what can be broken or deferred and an airliner is still allowed to fly.

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I wasn't speaking about the allowed status, but the one transporting the safety policy of the airline. More precisely, the one to which (potential) customers react to. I'm aware of the minimum equipment list, but you have a point there, Chris.

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*The only loads the fence has to support are the aerodynamic forces on the fence itself.

 

I don't see why an A320 wouldn't be able to fly with that fence removed (even on one side). They are not that big and even with one missing it would throw the trim off but I bet it would fly better then a B17 used to fly limping back from Germany with chunks missing out of it.

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I bet it would fly better then a B17 used to fly limping back from Germany with chunks missing out of it.

 

beat me to it!

 

I don't think the issue is whether it was funny or not, but should a plane with that kind of damage to the wing be allowed to fly before fixing it?

 

Like the RW pilots have said, that is nothing. You should see what the military is told to fly with sometimes. Had a Mil pilot tell me that he complained about his afterburner. The chief went back there with a ball-peen hammer and banged the sh%t out of it... told em that should fix it!

 

A little chip like that is about as critical as a missing cup holder.

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I don't see why an A320 wouldn't be able to fly with that fence removed (even on one side). They are not that big and even with one missing it would throw the trim off but I bet it would fly better then a B17 used to fly limping back from Germany with chunks missing out of it.

 

QF32 also showed us what an A380 can fly around with, but neither the A380 pilots nor the B17 pilots would have taken off with a plane already in that condition, especially not with paying passengers on board. The point I was trying to make was that not only will an A320 probably fly perfectly well without a fence, it will fly well enough to carry passengers safely.

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Looks like a repaired (albeit temporarily) rather than damaged area to me. It would appear that it's been taken to with a grinder to smooth off the edges (and remove discontinuities). That should stop cracks forming.

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Makes me wonder if some of the maintenance ad-hocing that resulted in the MD80 loss is creeping back into Alaska's maintenance. There are procedures for marking dents and damage on aircraft. You mark it when damage has been found, inspected and found within service limits so that subsequent crews and rampers will not keep reporting to mx control the damage. Writing 'we know about' is probably not the way that procedure is outlined in their maintenance manuals.

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Writing 'we know about' is probably not the way that procedure is outlined in their maintenance manuals.

He%20He.gif At least not in times of youtube and things. But Mike had a good point I think. I couldn't tell about the severity of the issue, just the 'easygoing' impression it leaves behind.

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He%20He.gif At least not in times of youtube and things. But Mike had a good point I think. I couldn't tell about the severity of the issue, just the 'easygoing' impression it leaves behind.

 

I'm pretty sure even if the maintenance people hadn't written anything there would have been an OMG MY PLANE HAD A HOLE IN IT!!!!1!!! post all over facebook/twitter/whatever.

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