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Guest windsock3

Off-topic real safety question

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Hi all,Recently I was waiting at the gate aboard a B-737. Sitting just forward of the starboard wing I saw a mechanic working on the engine. About 10 min later we pulled back and was taxing to the runway when I noticed a latch on the cowling was sticking straight-up Clearly the latched had not been secured. I rang for the FA who then told the cockpit. The plane came to an abrupt stop and shortly thereafter a mechanic fixed the latch.I received few "pats on the back" from my fellow passengers and one guy talked the FA in giving me some free drinks. The whole thing was good natured but I wonder if this could have turned into a serious incident or are there other latches that would have kept the cowling in place during the flight.Any comments welcomed,Regards

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Lose a cowing? It's been done before. Below is a link to NTSB report regarding a Scare-bus shedding a cowling.http://www.ntsb.gov/ntsb/brief2.asp?ev_id=...L04IA156&akey=1I'm guessing as long as none of the wiring or plumbing is damaged, a return to the airport will be non-eventful. Airline pilots practice single engine approaches too.No matter how you look at it, Safety of Flight is everyone's responsibility, not just the crew.Good job! :-beerchugBest regards,Jim

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Good catch man!Back when i worked at McCarran, the company I worked for used to offer cash prizes or safety, one of our ground guys spotted a hydraulic leak on an Air Canada 767 and won $100 + something else, like his picture in our newsletter. Safety 1st, we live by it in the Air Force, proudly an E-3 has never crashed due to maintenance.Jeff

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Thanks Guys. Self presentation was also a motivating factor! Good article Jim, it was definitely the fan cowl and it turns out the mechanic was doing something with the engine oil and the pilot had done his walk around before the maintenance.I am sure we would have gotten back fine, but I think I would have needed a few more drinks if I had to look out at a "naked" engine as we returned.Regards

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Good catch and good job! I did about the same thing many years ago, I think that I was about 10 years old. We were about to depart JFK in route to Munich when I saw something that was not normal with one of the engines on the 747 so I told my mom but she told me not to worry about it, it was probably normal. I knew it was not so I really started to pitch a fit, finally a FA arrived and I told her about it, she looked and ran off. We had just taxied onto the runway, I heard the engines start to spool up and then they went back down. We taxied back to the terminal and some guys fixed the problem, after a short delay we were off again. The captain thanked me over the intercom and the passengers applauded, as a kid that was great! I was of course invited to spend some time in the cockpit during the flight and I had a ball. I think that it is very important to say something if things don't look right, better safe than sorry. Philip Olsonhttp://www.precisionmanuals.com/images/forum/supporter.jpg

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It was a passenger on Concorde after takoff from Washington that noticed wing damage and major fuel leakage after a tire blew on takeoff. In his case, he had to make a fuss for a while, and the copilot may have even come back for reasons of security rather than safety, but tragedy was averted. The water diverter was redesigned, but Concorde was still vulnerable to damage from a blowout, as was tragically discovered.A 737 operating out of KABE was missing a reverser fairing for over a month, and was under a mach .76 restriction going to KORD twice a day with a stop in Harrisburgh on the way back. I was just a lowly caterer, but that was hard to believe.Best Regards, Donny:-wave

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Hello All,Well, being a pilot myself, I don't make a very good passenger, to say the least. I KNOW the guy up front has tons of hours, has the latest training and everything in his favor to do the job right, however he isn't as good as I am, (self preservation talking there) and although I have had to put my life in many a pilots hands while flying commericial at times, I darned sure didn't care for it.On one flight from KSYR to KDAY with a stop in KROC, I observed a port side main flap actuator, (bracket, guide slide runner, whatever Boeing calls that part on the 737)fail after takeoff, and let the main flap sort of 'flap' around until, with difficulty, it finally managed to retract itself in a cockeyed way. I'm sure it's off kilter position had some affect on trim, but on a large commericial jet, I'm also sure it was hardly noticed.In steps 'Superhero' pilot to the rescue. I motioned to a FA and asked her to take a seat next to me . . . (not coming on to her, but just wanting the privacy of not blabbing this information to the whole cabin), after two excuses, she reluctantly sat down and I asked her to take a look at the flap and mentioned it was greatly out of position. I then informed her that I was a pilot, with a gobb of hrs under my butt, and I was almost positive that the pilot was NOT aware of this situation, that I had seen the aformentioned items guide fail and that should he use the main flaps during landing, should it rip off at the darnedest time, we could all possibly be on the next NTSB fatality report. I my calmest way, I made it most clear that we could NOT land using the flaps, as that was a ticket to disaster.She thanked me, said she would mention it but was positive that the Captain already knew about it. At this point I became most demanding -- "look darlin, don't just mention it, get someone back here from the front office to take a look . . . it's that important if you want to make that date you have at the end of the flight." I was making an assumption, based on her most attractive looks that she surly had some young man waiting for her attention. I must have made the right grunting sounds or such because 5 minutes later, the FO came back, introduced himself and sat down to have a look. He saw the flaps cockeyed at rest and then listened as I discribed what had taken place. From the size of his eyes, I knew that no one in the 'front office' had a clue of what had happened and we would NOT BE LANDING WITH FLAPS AT KDAY.This was back in the days when you mentioned something and demanded that the 'front office' know about it, it was not an immediate arrest by the passengers or you were accused of terrorism of some kind. (pre 911).Upon leaving the aircraft, I was invited into the cockpit, shot the bull with the Captain and FO for about 15 min and was told, -- all pilots love war stories and he was an Air Guard F-4 Driver in his spare time -- (as I already assumed) that if we had landed with full flaps, and it had ripped loose, well, things might have gotten a tad messy.The airlines in question also gave me a full round trip ticket 1st Class to any station in the continental US as a 'thank you'. (again this was at a time when most airlines in the US wern't fileing for bankruptcy and were actually making money), and later I recieved a thank you letter from the head of maintenance of said airlines.In truth, all passengers need to be aware of the aircraft they are flying on -- it's the little, overlooked things that make the biggest trash heap which was once an airliner.Best to all, and keep an eye out Clayhttp://www.dreamfleet2000.com/gfx/images/F...ers/Dopke01.jpgClayton T. Dopke (Clay)Major, USAF (retired)"Drac"

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Well done man ! awsome work noticing it :).Best regards:Alex

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Hi,A sudden APU failure at pushback with later help of a GPU (45 min. delay) is that a NO-GO item or not?I noticed that very recently, 9-11!, on a 767-300ER at KDEN.The Cpt. told the passengers onboard that it was only a minor nuisance and we could perfectly go to KATL, as we did (didn't miss the connection to EHAM!)Being a real pilot myself (GA+), I was a little bit reluctant about things happening.Another pilot, with obviously more experience, Citations etc., in the seat-row behind me, told me that the procedure was perfectly normal.What are your opinions?Jan"Beatus Ille Procul Negotiis"

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Donny AKA ShalomarFly 2 ROCKS!!!The APU is mainly to provide environmental control, electricity, and some provide the bleed air that starts the engines, if they aren't started electrically. Most APU's can't be used at cruising altitude anyway, and are usually shut down at main engine start. On some aircraft APU can be used for auxilary hydraulics, but generally, if you are not getting any environmental control, electricity or hydraulics from your main engines, you won't be flying much longer and the APU not working inflight would be the least of your concerns! The APU is not generally needed for inflight engine restart anyway. In fact, it is entirely possible to park a turboprop in front of a jet on the ramp, fire it up, advance the throttles on the turboprop till the jet gets to a certain RPM and the engine-driven fuel pumps are operational, open the high pressure coocks and light it up! I suggested it once when a plane I was catering had a dead battery, but they chose the delay instead...:)Some versions of the Citation don't have an APU at all.Best Regards, Donny :-wave

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Well done and good catch! I've always beleived that passengers form part of the crew and this is an excellent example!Did the Capn' say thanks to you too hee hee!:)

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Hi,Good find............LayaboutFAA A&P Ticket..

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I'd not be worried about the flying characteristics of the aircraft without that hatch or even the entire cowling.I would be worried about the hatch hitting and damaging something potentially vital if and when it would come loose during flight, but chances of that are also small (unless it's an entire wing section letting go of course).Good catch of course, saved everyone some scares and the crew a lot of embarassment at the least.

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-----------------------------------------------saved everyone some scares and the crew a lot of embarassment at the least.-----------------------------------------------Is there a light that comes on when something like a latch on the cowling is not fastened? I know theres warnings for a lot of things on big planes but is there one for this too? Im guessing not otherwise the pilots would have known about it before this threads poster alerted the FA....?:)

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Good Catch! My first flight on an airliner was on a United DC-10 in 1979. It was right after they were back flying again after their grounding fromn the AA Flight 191 where the engine fell off. This was actually a replacement plane as this was a charter flight to Las Vegas and it was suppose to be a DC-8 stretch, but because of mechanical problems, the DC-10 was used instead. I was sitting at a window seat, with a view of the left engine. What startled me was how much the wing and engine swayed and flexed in flight (This was my first flight) Then As I walked around to the other side I noticed the cowling off the supporting Pylon on top of the right engine. Since I knew the left engine had it on, and it was right after the DC-10's were airborne again after the AA Flight 191 crash, this got me a little worried. It also got my father a little nervous, so he asked the FA about it. Unlike your experience, she just shrugged it off and said that maintenance must have had it off for inspection. She never took it further or notified the cockpit. To this day, I always wondered if it was safe to fly that way. I have flown on DC-10's 4 times after that and not once was that cowling been off, and in no wing view photos I have seen, had it off.

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