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RISCfuture

747-8 ETOPS procedures

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47 minutes ago, downscc said:

Not true, if you lose one of four it may well be better to continue  to destination.

In which case, it's not a...

4 hours ago, iwebber said:

failure that means you can't continue your flight to your destination safely

But I agree,

49 minutes ago, downscc said:

There is a complex decision support system just for this and there is definitely not a certainty that you will divert.

Which is exactly what I'm getting at, that complex decision making process will apply to any flight, irrespective of number of engines and whether you were planned under ETOPS/EROPS/EDTO rules.

I think we're getting there...

Ian Webber

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"Suitable" is the key word of the day.  There was a diversion to Midway Island several years back for a shattered windshield because it was identified as a "Suitable" airport by the dispatcher working the flight.   The amount of damage the aircraft took landing in a swarm of Gooney birds and the fact they had to build wooden stairs to deplane has since redefined that definition a bit.


Paul Gollnick

Manager Customer/Technical Support

Precision Manuals Development Group

www.precisionmanuals.com

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Precisely Paul,

That's my point, just because some dispatcher sat in a nice warm office has come up with a perfectly legal 'suitable' (in ETOPS planning terms) alternate for his ETOPS/EROPS/EDTO plan, doesn't mean it's actually suitable (in the usual meaning of the word) for every real life in flight eventuality. They're good to have in your back pocket (so to speak) but depending on the failure and the "complex decision support structure" Dan was talking about the crew may well decide to go somewhere else entirely. That is their prerogative, the plan just shows it's legal, it's in no way recommending or requiring crew's to use those alternates in an emergency situation.

Once the flight commences the plan is simply a plan like any other, ETOPS or otherwise and every pilot, whether flying a 172 10 minutes down the road or taking a 747 half way round the globe, will handle whatever failure is thrown his/her way and do what they think is best for the safety of the flight. What some dispatcher wrote on some bit of paper numerous hours before is neither here nor there...

Hope I'm making sense now...

Ian Webber

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48 minutes ago, iwebber said:

will handle whatever failure is thrown his/her way and do what they think is best for the safety of the flight.

It has been my experience that during an emergency the A/C will handle the emergency as trained. 🙂

 


I Earned My Spurs in Vietnam

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On 9/24/2018 at 7:15 AM, RISCfuture said:

I'm wondering if anyone knows typical crew procedures for ETOPS specific to the 747-8

for example, some 737 ETOPS certifications require the APU to be on during the ETOPS segment. (Or maybe I'm wrong about that.) Anyone aware of similar ETOPS procedures for 747-8s?

Any such procedure would be contained in the Supplementary Procedure section in the aircraft type’s FCOM. As such, There is no procedure there for 748 so no is the answer to your question.

System wise, the 748 has sufficient redundancy and adequate equippage (generally) of critical systems to preclude any special handling procedures. The key considerations are pre flt planning requirements, airplane suitability and enroute monitoring (weather/fuel/airfield).

 

Off topic, im not sure if it is just a jurisdiction difference, but, there are still obligations to be met enroute meaning edto planning data is still a critical factor enroute. Although it is just a “contingency plan” there is expectation that that plan will be followed except where circumstances preclude the following of that plan.

Edited by Copper.

Brian Nellis

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6 hours ago, Copper. said:

im not sure if it is just a jurisdiction difference, but, there are still obligations to be met enroute meaning edto planning data is still a critical factor

You may be right, I'm talking EU Ops, what jurisdiction does it differently?

What obligations need to be met en route?

Ian Webber

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On 9/26/2018 at 5:20 PM, iwebber said:

In which case, it's not a...

But I agree,

Which is exactly what I'm getting at, that complex decision making process will apply to any flight, irrespective of number of engines and whether you were planned under ETOPS/EROPS/EDTO rules.

I think we're getting there...

Ian Webber

Ian,

The point I was trying to make is that when a twin jet suffers an engine failure on an ETOPS operation it is required to land at the nearest suritable airfield, whereas with the same engine failure condition this requirement does not apply to a 744 operation (I know because I have experienced this on more than one occasion!).  In most cases a 744 will be able to make its planned destination on three engines - provided there is enough fuel on board and that is what the Captain decides to do on the day.  The despatcher's decisions do not figure in my book when the chips are down; because (a) they are not on board to suffer the consequences if their decisions are wrong and (b) the safety of the aircraft, passengers and crew is ultimately the Captain's legal responsibility! 

You are right about the complex nature of the decision making process pilots face every day.  By its very nature every flight and failure will be different.  Sometimes the crew's actions in dealing with a serious problem will not be straightforward and may result in actions being taken which are outside the laid down QRH and Emergency/Abnormal Checklist procedures.  The Souix City DC10 landing accident many years ago where the center engine blew and took out the aircraft's hydraulic systems is a classic example of this.  Although the aircraft crashed and regrettably some died as a result, this accident was regarded as an enhanced outcome simply because many lives were saved by the brave actions of an experienced flight crew who  worked together as a team to fly the aircraft as best they could and against almost impossible odds.


Bertie Goddard

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It is an interesting one - the BA 747 that lost an engine on departure from LAX a few years back, continued on to LHR, then due to a fuel mismanagement issue diverted and I believe the FAA got in a huff about it all. Half way across the Pacific, it may well be best to continue on, but in the BA case, hindsight and all, it may have been better to land, even if not at LAX but at JFK or something like that.


Wes Meyer

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First off 'Suitable' means that you must dispatch for WX mins prior to departing.  That's just a small part of ETOPS as well as part 135 and higher.  It also means an airfield capable of handling the aircraft in normal conditions.  I think you all are confusing 'emergency' and 'suitable'.  In the case of an emergency it's all fair game ('suitable') or not.

ETOPS is now defined as anything with 2 or more engines.  You could theoretically be ETOPS over the US if your operator is not OPSPEC'd for it.  

There's also ETOPS for small operators (charter/fractional operators) where you must remain 50 or 100 NM within shore unless you prove to the FAA you can fly the Q routes.  We're working on that right now for our P100s so we can cut the gulf from TX to FL.

In any case you still need to be within 60 minutes of a suitable airport with suitable WX conditions for a specified time period or those segments are considered ETOPS.

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Bertie,

I'm in complete agreement with you, it's just you're treating the engine failure case as special and unique, whereas I'm lumping it in the

On 9/26/2018 at 12:56 PM, iwebber said:

failure that means you can't continue your flight to your destination safely

bucket, like fire/fumes in the flight deck or depressurisation, unless you're really quite close to your destination you're going to be diverting somewhere, it's just about deciding where and, my point, the plan is irrelevant to that decision

And the magic word is suitable, defined for ETOPS planning purposes, less defined for an actual emergency situation. As Jeff said, we shouldn't be

6 hours ago, Jeff Nielsen said:

confusing 'emergency' and 'suitable'

If it's an emergency (engine failure, depressurisation, smoke, fire, fumes, medical, disruptive passenger, whatever) the plan is irrelevant, ETOPS or otherwise.

We all seem to be in agreement, ETOPS is a planning exercise, once the flight is under way there are no (bar the odd type specific foibles) special procedures for it.

The plan is required, great to have and very useful but it requires nothing of us once we're on our way. It's merely a collection of interesting information that we might find useful. This is true of all flights, ETOPS or otherwise.

The BA case is always brought up in these discussions, usually as a negative (and with a 'I would have done it better than them' attitude) but I've always seen it as a vindication of the flight continuation policy of 4 engine aircraft. They had an engine problem, decided to continue whilst they figured it out, arrived at the Atlantic having calculated how much fuel they'd need and what they'd do if they lost another engine and decided to cross, crossed only to find there wasn't quite enough fuel to safely reach LHR (planned winds not as advertised) so they diverted to Manchester (a 20 minute flight away). This all sounds perfectly reasonable to me, at no point was the flight in danger and they managed to wrestle the aircraft to within 20 minutes of their intended destination despite the failure of an engine. I'm struggling to see the negative here, yes they didn't reach their destination on the first attempt, yes their fuel management may not have been perfect (it can get really quite tricky in the engine failure case) and yes,

6 hours ago, 77west said:

the FAA got in a huff about it

But nobody died....

Hindsight is a wonderful thing and I'm sure we've all got stories of when we wished we knew something during an event that we didn't know until after it, I don't really think it can be used to try and diminish the actions or decisions of a crew who were actually on the aircraft at the time and had to make the decisions. However you slice it, nobody died, tick V. Good, move to the bar...

Hope I'm making sense now,

Ian Webber

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On 9/23/2018 at 7:26 PM, 559AS said:

Unless your ETOPS program is approved for APU On Demand.  In that case, the APU may remain off while in the ETOPS segment as long as that aircraft is approved to fly under APUOD for that flight.  If not, you're required to operate under the APU Continuous Run procedures. 

My airline has one 757 with a 5kVA generator instead of a 10kVA that the rest of the fleet has. This requires us to run the APU during ETOPS until all fuel has been burned out of the center tank, while the other aircraft don’t have this requirement. A different scenario than you’re talking about, but just another consideration. Like we say at my airline, we had a standardized fleet....until we got our second plane. 🙂


Sean Wood

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On 9/28/2018 at 3:24 AM, 77west said:

It is an interesting one - the BA 747 that lost an engine on departure from LAX a few years back, continued on to LHR, then due to a fuel mismanagement issue diverted and I believe the FAA got in a huff about it all. Half way across the Pacific, it may well be best to continue on, but in the BA case, hindsight and all, it may have been better to land, even if not at LAX but at JFK or something like that.

 

I think Ian Webber is right, we are in agreement when talking about hindsight being a wonderful thing.  Isn't this what lawyers sometimes rely on when testing the 'evidence' in court after something has gone seriously wrong?!  Every flight and failure is different and even the same event happening on a different day to the same crew will be handled differently. This is why non-jeopardy training for crews in a zero flight time simulator using realistic scenarios can be such a powerful learning tool.  After all, isn't it much better to learn from your mistakes in a simulator and so improve your knowledge of the real aircraft and enhance your piloting skills? 

I don't see why the FAA got into a huff (or not) over the 747 engine failure that Wes mentions.  I am not familiar with this particular flight so I can't comment on it, but it is perfectly normal to continue on three engines in a 747 and try and make your original destination if you can - provided of course that it is always safe to do so.  If I had to carry out an unscheduled landing or diversion in the USA then JFK would not necessarily be my first choice.  It's perhaps worth bearing in mind that the FAA have also approved three engine ferry flights - and 2 engine ETOPS!


Bertie Goddard

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A couple of points on ETOPS -  

1. ETOPS is only required when the segment is more than 180 minutes from an Adequate Airport for aircraft with more than two engines.

2.  ETOPS is not required for Freighters except in POLAR operations. 

3. The term "Suitable Airport" is no longer used in regards to ETOPS and has been replaced with "ETOPS Alternate".  

4. An "ETOPS Alternate" is basically an "Adequate Airport (one appropriate for aircraft type) that meets the stated requirements for planned diversion use and is listed in the certificate holder's operations specifications." 

Hope this helps a little. 🙂

Grace and Peace,

 


I Earned My Spurs in Vietnam

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