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Squawks & HeadlinesReports of UPS Plane Crash in Birmingham

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Reports of UPS Plane Crash in Birmingham

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Getting preliminary reports of a UPS cargo plane crash in Birmingham, Alabama. (www.alabamas13.com) More...

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jeta1unleaded
CYGK Flyboy 20
Deepest condolences to the families of the crew involved. Extremely sad. As Michael Fuquay said, the items are replaceable, the people are not. I was terribly saddened by the news, but at least we can see some hope in that as far as we know, no one was killed on the ground.
Again, deepest condolences :(
99NY
99NY 2
Looks like they were beginning their approach to RWY 6, then changed course towards RWY 18 before going down. Maybe an inflight malfunction? WX doesnt seem to be too much of an issue. Either way, a sad day.
sparkie624
sparkie624 0
10 miles visibility, the sun rose at 6:09AM. Crash was shortly after 6AM, so they were about that time and should have been able to see the airport. Saw another report that said they lost 9000 feet of altitude in 2 minutes. They had good visual conditions, and looked like they had a good approach setup... Either the plane suffered a catastrophic failure, or the crew made a major BOOBOO...
southgeek
stacey go 3
The sun did indeed rise at 6:09 am.CDT Keep in mind BHM is in cental time and all the times here on flight aware report by eastern time. The plane crash occurred at 5am central daylight time. It was still pitch dark. Very poor visibility, at that hour, we were out in it,rain/mist/fog
Just FYI
sparkie624
sparkie624 2
I did keep that in mind.. However, USA TODAY reporting it did not take that into account and I though they had. My fault for listening to such a lousy news source.
PhotoFinish
PhotoFinish 1
The east coast news sources had the accident happening just before 6am EDT.

If you look up flight data on sites like flightaware, it shows the flight originating at about 6am EDT from Louisville around 5am EDT and ending near Birmingham at about 5:50 am EDT (Louisville time).

But since Birmingham is Central Time it was about 4:50 CDT in Birmingham at the time of the crash.
AWAAlum
AWAAlum 1
I must not be reading the log correctly, for according to the chart, at 5:45-ish there was still data being recorded of its descent. I'm very confused.
preacher1
preacher1 1
I'm thinkin' 5:55CDT was crash time
alejandroreyes
alejandro reyes 2
F.R.M.S. check that !!!!
davysims
David Sims -3
Not sure where you received that information on the weather. Flightaware records show broken clouds at 700 feet and 6 miles vis in mist. Radar at the time showed light to moderate precip moving in from the west just before the accident.

http://flightaware.com/resources/airport/KBHM/weather
sparkie624
sparkie624 6
KBHM 140953Z 34004KT 10SM FEW011 BKN035 OVC075 23/22 A2997 RMK AO2 SLP141 T02330222

Data from: http://aviation-safety.net
davysims
David Sims 1
Correction 3500 feet. I was looking at the TAF data by mistake. Sun was not up yet at the time of the crash, plus the cloud layer, would make it dark underneath yet. Still doesn't explain what happens, but as with most crashes there is more than one link in the chain of events.
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
It said crash was shortly after 6AM, and the Sun in Birmingham was posted as being up at 6:09. Very close. I have not seen the EXACT time of the crash.
notaperfectpilot
notaperfectpilot 4
crash was at 4:51 AM....sun wouldn't have been up then
sparkie624
sparkie624 3
I must have been reading a read a misinformed report. You know how some of these news agencies are.
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
Too many stories out there. USAtoday is (or was) showing shortly after 6AM... But FA says almost 5 AM. I think USAtoday lost a fact.
DIRECTFLT
DIRECTFLT 1
That's why I come here first, to sort through the mish-mash of the reported stories :)
rawdiesel97
Ramon Stewart 1
6AM eastern time. The accdient was at 551 am Est/4:51 Cst B-Ham is central time.
davysims
David Sims 1
4:49 AM Central time was the last report on flightaware. Probably being reported as 6:00 AM due to the news agencies being on the east coast. Regardless, still dark out.
davysims
David Sims 5
Adding to that, 18 does not have a full ILS, only a localizer, so there is no glideslope. They would have only had PAPI for any type of glidepath indication. Perhaps a black hole effect could have caused them to touch down early, as the end of Runway 18 is not populated and has no approach lighting.
SootBox
SootBox 4
Looking at 18 in Google Earth, about a mile or so north of it, there is some VERY funky terrain and at that sunless time of the morning, it would probably all blend together in 2D. Seems strange that they'd use that much shorter runway than 6-24
SootBox
SootBox 2
Looking at 18 in Google Earth, about a mile or so north of it, there is some VERY funky terrain and at that sunless time of the morning, it would probably all blend together in 2D. Seems strange that they'd use that much shorter runway than 6-24.
preacher1
preacher1 2
It is a little strange, BUT they would have been just almost on that heading coming down from Louisville. Wind was negligible and I'm not sure that's even a 24 hour tower, but even 7 grand would have been plenty of room. wx was going down though. At 0400 they were MVFR and at 0500 they were IFR with a low deck so it went down pretty quick.
sparkie624
sparkie624 2
I believe that it is a 24 hour tower. I have been there on Road Trips before.
SootBox
SootBox 1
They said today 6-24 was shut down for light maint...
sparkie624
sparkie624 11
This is very bad news. I did not see in any of the stories state anything about the flight crew getting out. My prayers go out to those pilots and families.

Looking at the Flight Aware Data it shows him on approach, but turns off course. The weather at that time did not look to bad, some small stuff, but nothing significant, from the way they were approaching, I am guessing he was on a visual approach. I hope the FDR/CVR survive.. the pictures that I saw looked like a pretty hot event.
mjsracing1
Steve Shaw 2
I agree. It looks like they went missed or maybe had a windshear alert. I've been into B-ham and there is a black hole effect at that end of the runway. Scary stuff.
SootBox
SootBox 2
Probably carrying a full fuel load too in advance of a series of hops to make during the day. RIP "Upsco 1354".
KauaiGolfer
KauaiGolfer 4
Most UPS airplanes sit during the day, and they never carry full fuel unless the length of the individual flight requires it. They also need to carry as much freight as possible, and carrying around large amounts of fuel would cut into that.
PhotoFinish
PhotoFinish 4
The plane broke apart. So that fuel likely just burned the cargo. The pilots however were reportedly found outside near the fuselage. Pics of the cockpit show it sitting upright and unburned at quite a distance from the rest of the wreck.

God speed to the crew of UPS 1354.
kadriver
kadriver 12
UPS FedEx have the latest state of the art nav equipment. Their FMS can build glideslopes, or fly any pitch descent profile that is programed. Let the NTSB do their job and lets stop Monday morning quarterbacking this tragedy.
kadriver
kadriver 5
God speed crew of UPS1354
TXCAVU
Elizabeth Robillard 5
Exactly. There are many factors yet to be revealed and as we recently saw with Asiana 214, let's get the facts first.
HunterTS4
Toby Sharp 1
Sports has Monday Morning Quarterbacks......kinda the same thing. With all do respect.
kadriver
kadriver 2
Yes sports does but the MMQ watched the whole game the day before knowing all aspects of the game. In this situation, only the data recorders know what happened. So I would say its not the same thing.
MIKESWICK
MIKE SWICK 1
CONCUR and all the "guessing" in he world will not make a conclusion on what happened
Doobs
Dee Lowry 4
To the families of the Crew Members, my thoughts and prayers are with you all.
Like many of you, I'm scratching my head over this. Steve Shaw mentioned the "Black Hole Effect". Flying VFR, because of the absence of an ILS/GS and with the "Black Hole Effect", may have contributed to the low and short approach. There are hills that rise around the runway area. Those hills, when flying at that hour of the day, may have been causing that "Black Hole Effect", which would definately interfere with one's "depth perception"...thus giving you a false visual.
There are so many questions right now and not nearly enough answers. I would like to question Cargo Pilot Rest Regulations. They definately do not mirror the regulations of Commercial Airline Pilots. The Cargo Pilots are totally exempt from commercial regulations, regarding rest. It all comes down to the "almighty $" to regulate Cargo Crew Member Rest Regulations. Whether it be a Commercial pilot or Cargo pilot- they all experience the same fatigue. The FAA needs to put Commercial and Cargo pilots on the same regulatory level.
onceastudentpilot
tim mitchell 4
Condolences to the families.
THRUSTT
THRUSTT 1
Cargo pilots rules are a godsend compared to 135. The FAA needs to address that more. Running double clocks on us, some of us are going to meet a bad end one day with fatigue...
preacher1
preacher1 1
Is that something akin to a truck driver running 2 log books?
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
I thought UPS was under Part 121 air carrier... Their time is maintained by the company and audited by the FAA. Would be hard to cheat on that...
THRUSTT
THRUSTT 1
U know the scam
preacher1
preacher1 1
Cargo was exempted from the new rest rules that applies to 121 pilots. Other than that, as you say
onceastudentpilot
tim mitchell 1
I doubt that ups would dare play around with fudging numbers.....most of the time companies like the ups and walmart try to set up rules that exceed the requirments of the government....as most of you know it ; the bigger the brand, the higher the fine
gearup328
Peter Steitz 1
With GPS, it's hard now for truck drivers to cheat.
onceastudentpilot
tim mitchell 1
depending on how crooked the person is all they have to do in unplung the qualcom under the bunk and use a paper log for their extra miles......'why wasn't the qualcom working?.....it needs maint."
preacher1
preacher1 1
Yeah they are telling me that them E logs are tearing up a lot of playhouses. Not a problem on my end but as THRUSTT says it is a problem in a lot of places and it is outright laughable for the FAA or some agency to think they know hat is going on. With a lot of the operators it's "You like your job, your breathin', fly the plane". THRUSTT, did I get that about right?????????
20U60N4
STEVE EMERY 3
NTSB: UPS Pilots Had Warnings Moments Before Crash
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. August 17, 2013 (AP)
Associated Press -



A flight recorder revealed that pilots of a UPS cargo jet that crashed short of a runway at Birmingham's airport received warnings about their rate of descent seconds before impact, investigators said Friday.

National Transportation Safety Board member Robert Sumwalt told reporters during a briefing that a recorder captured the first of two audible warnings in the cockpit 16 seconds before the sound of an impact, either with trees or the ground.

The warnings indicated the A300 cargo plane was descending at a rate outside normal parameters given its altitude, Sumwalt said, but investigators haven't made any determination on the actual cause of the crash into an Alabama hillside.



Sumwalt said investigators will analyze the airplane's weight to determine whether it should have attempted a landing on the runway, the shorter of two runways at Birmingham Shuttlesworth International Airport.

With a large hill and trees at one end, the runway lacks the electronics for a full instrument landing. That forces pilots to make key judgments about altitude while aiming a descending aircraft at a runway that's 5,000 feet shorter than the airport's main runway, which was closed for maintenance work at the time of the crash.

Some pilots simply avoid landing on Runway 18 when possible, said veteran commercial pilot Ross Aimer.

"When I heard they were using Runway 18 it caught my attention because of that hill," said Aimer. "It's sad, but it didn't surprise me."



Sumwalt said the aircraft went down during its first landing attempt. Sumwalt said investigators have not found any problems with the runway's lights or navigation system, which typically provides pilots with information about their lateral position but not about their altitude, unlike those on runways where pilots can land using only instruments
bizjets101
biz jets 3
Aircraft first flew on March 11 2003 and was delivered new to UPS on February 13 2004, photo from rye man/flickr; N155UP A300F-622R msn 0841

http://farm4.staticflickr.com/3316/3556197510_a2ff35dc8b_b.jpg
vanstaalduinenj
Jon Van Staalduinen 3
Terrible news
TXCAVU
Elizabeth Robillard 3
Cockpit broke off, crew gone. RIP
JBReinertsen
Joshua Reinertsen 1
Care to elaborate? During approach or while impacting the terrain?
sparkie624
sparkie624 4
After Impact cockpit broke off, Crew did not survive.
Av8nut
Michael Fuquay 4
My thoughts and prayers go out to all families affected by this tragedy. Packages and planes can be replaced.
Musketeer1
Musketeer1 2
I get so mad when I see stuff like Asiana and I just get depressed when I see stuff like this.
1PilotJY
Jeremy Young 2
My thoughts are out to the UPS Airlines Family, and those families of the Pilots. It is one of those risky jobs that we can place on the board. May not be up there with Public Safety and Law Enforcement, but it is a risky career choice. I know that the UPS Airlines and the families will cope and will be able to move ahead with life and business. Hope the investigation brings about some changes and that no other aircraft will have the same issues.
sparkie624
sparkie624 2
Just out on CNN states that the NTSB has retrieved the CVR/FDR's Definite good news.. Maybe now we will get some real info.
Pileits
Pileits 2
Wait for the FULL NTSB report. However if eye witness saw the aircraft on fire BEFORE impact, consider a cargo fire as the cause. Again wait for the NTSB.
sparkie624
sparkie624 2
Not much info in the news... I wonder what happened.
swishere2c
jim swisher 2
Tim, I do not have time to post old NOTAMs. They can be found at your local OPS terminal.

You are the Man. Your son should be proud of you. Old photo... How old is he now?

My Pop was a ww11 ace. USN. He taught me to fly inside the airplane.

I did A-3 Skywarrior duty and retired. I have cooled my engines, interested in keeping all safe in the field. ...Swish
gearup328
Peter Steitz 2
Latest report is that the EGPWS sounded two warnings of a high sink rate just before the impact. I got this about half an hour ago. This might give some credibility to the fact that the crew was found away from the wreckage but sequentially died from injuries. A high impact would have really crushed them with the G force. They maybe had enough adrenalin flowing to get out but not enough to survive internal injuries. In photos, the cockpit was intact but separated from the rest of the aircraft. The question begs---why did they have this high sink rate?
preacher1
preacher1 2
Anybody have anything out of the ordinary on ATC prior to the crash, or is that even a 24 hr tower down there?
acmi
acmi 2
If you look at the flight graph, they were in trouble way before the runway. made 2 turns and fell 9000 ft in 3 minutes. My guess trying to get it down to the first flat spot they could see.
preacher1
preacher1 2
Saw all that. My question is still why did they not say anything to ATC?
acmi
acmi 1
\too busy trying to keep it in the air
sparkie624
sparkie624 4
I have problems buying that one. The Pilot Flying certainly had his hand on the yolk and there is a PTT right there. Did not even put out a mayday. That close to the airport he would have been in contact with ATC and to declare an emergency and get rescue running before touch down would have been paramount. will have to wait and see what is on the CVR.
gearup328
Peter Steitz 1
9,000 feet in 3 minutes is not a normal descent. At that time in the morning there is very little traffic. They should have begun a normal 1,500 to 2,000 FPM descent given by the center when still far from the field. They were filed at FL280. From what altitude was this 9,000 foot descent begun?
Citst46
Denis Pianalto 2
According to the Flightaware track log, the descent of note was from 9500' to 2500' in roughly 2 minutes. The most notable thing I see though is that after the higher than " normal" descent rate, they flew 2-3 minutes with a 500-600 fpm descent rate...that is easily 4-5 NM under stable, controlled flight.
AABABY
FRANK MARTINOLI 1
Altitude sensitive 'cargo', maybe?
TXCAVU
Elizabeth Robillard 3
Flight 1354 was landing to the south on Runway 18, which lacks an instrument-landing system. Air-traffic controllers cleared the jet for a so-called localizer approach. The pilots didn’t make a distress call to the airport control tower, said Odom, the lack of a call suggests the pilots weren’t aware of an onboard fire or other issue that led to the accident.
jmt1565
Joseph Tack 3
The tail number is N155UP...Look at the altitude/speed chart...nothing crazy, no huge drop in altitude before impact...
preacher1
preacher1 2
tks, Miss Elizabeth
vrukstalis
vrukstalis 2
Lord, guard and guide the men who fly
Through the great spaces of the sky;
Be with them traversing the air
In darkening storms or sunshine fair

Thou who dost keep with tender might
The balanced birds in all their flight
Thou of the tempered winds be near
That, having thee, they know no fear

Control their minds with instinct fit
What time, adventuring, they quit
The firm security of land;
Grant steadfast eye and skilful hand

Aloft in solitudes of space,
Uphold them with Thy saving grace.
O God, protect the men who fly
Thru lonely ways beneath the sky.
roll400ex
roll400ex 2
Heard Both crew members were found outside the aircraft and possibly used emergency slide so they were alive after impact- my dad is FO on ups a300
csonger
csonger 2
Lots of good ideas and conjecture. IMHO, looks like a case of cfit maybe brought on by the lack of vertical guidance on whichever approach they used , VOR or GPS, and the black hole effect. What hasn't been asked hereis why they chose 18,which is 3000 ft shorter and almost never used by such a large aircraft,even in day Vmc. That is what myself and a few others local to bham are wondering. In addition, if you look at the historical data for the last 2weeks,every flight has the last recorded retun on flight aware end at about 1500 ft and a heading of about 060 or 230, which lines up with bham's main runway. There was a large drop at 5000+ft/min but not in the last couple mins of the flight. More likely they were brought in high by ATC and had to dive bomb the descent to set up for the approach. Kind of not a good way to set up a night IFR appr to minimums. The metar 5mins prior to the crash was 700 OVC,according to nav lost data. One thing for sure, the final report will have all us armchair quarterbacks wrong to some degree. My deepest condolences to the families and friends.
speedbird347
Derek Vaughn 4
I'm not saying you're incorrect, but I can't imagine a scenario where they could used the slides after the impact. Especially after viewing the wreckage.
roll400ex
roll400ex 1
Looking at the photos I would have to agree with you there, who knows...
TXCAVU
Elizabeth Robillard 2
Cockpit seats can and do break, as I recently witnessed. With the rotation of the aircraft as it broke apart, those pilots could have been jostled so hard, they were tossed and ejected. I wonder who/what open the cabin door.
sparkie624
sparkie624 2
I was wonder how they got out since there were no broken windows... The question now is how did they die, if it obviously was not from impact. Question arrise: Other injuries already sustained, affiliation, or other unknown variables. I am glad to hear they got out, but wish they had survived.
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
All the cockpit windows appeared in tact. With that in mind, where would they have exited
southgeek
stacey go 1
Using that runway because main, 11,000 feet runway, was under construction, as it has been, periodically.
preacher1
preacher1 1
Look at the comment by 99Y way up the thread. Not sure what he was looking at but he said they were beginning their approach to rwy6 and then turned and changed to 18. Don't make sense especially for no ATC chatter but that's what he said. Either way, they crashed and crew is dead. RIP. The report will be interesting. My personal feeling is that a major problem developed and they were trying to get down as fast as possible, and for whatever reason, came up short.
roll400ex
roll400ex 0
Now it appears the door was possibly cut off by emergency crews so who knows...
vanstaalduinenj
Jon Van Staalduinen 1
The absence of any distress call or mayday could be indicator that there was no cargo shift or fire/explosion. I am NOT an expert or even an aviator, but sounds like pilot spacial disorientation due to less then ideal conditions both environmental and those created by the change to a different then normal runway/approach lines.
Again am not and never will be an expert.
TXCAVU
Elizabeth Robillard 1
It is absolutely confirmed by the NTSB that the crew were found outside the cockpit?
TXCAVU
Elizabeth Robillard 1
UPS Flight 1354, an A300 en route from Louisville, Kentucky, to Birmingham, Alabama, has crashed, FAA confirms Pilot, co-pilot killed in crash near Birmingham, Ala., airport, mayor says.
99NY
99NY 1
Video of the crash scene here, showing the cockpit separated from the airframe by at least 500ft.
http://news.yahoo.com/cargo-plane-crashes-in-alabama--reports-say-112817506.html
Chiefapache
Hector Vazquez 1
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

CNN 2 dead in Alabama crash of UPS cargo plane

(CNN) -- The pilot and co-pilot of a UPS cargo flight died Wednesday when the Airbus A300 they were flying crashed on approach to the Birmingham, Alabama, airport, Mayor William Bell said.

The plane, which took off from Louisville, Kentucky, went down around 4:45 a.m. (5:45 a.m. ET), according to airport officials. It crashed on a street that runs parallel to the Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport, Bell said.

http://www.cnn.com/2013/08/14/us/alabama-cargo-plane-crash/index.html?hpt=hp_t2
TXCAVU
Elizabeth Robillard 1
"The plane appears to have struck a massive hardwood tree north of the runway. The top was broken out of the tree and there are pieces of a utility pole and limbs in the road."
greglinton13
Greg L 1
UPS1345. Anyone know the tail number?
fdxcas
john engle 1
prayers to the family of 1354
jentron
Ron Jensen 1
I'm not an Airbus hater, but I was shocked to notice on Wikipedia there have been 7 hull-loss accidents in the A300 on approach, plus one on take-off. Three were controlled flight into terrain (CFIT) on approach, 4 were in Take-off or Go-around (TOGO) and today's accident.

CFIT 18 December 1983: Malaysia Airlines Flight 684
CFIT 28 September 1992: PIA Flight 268
TOGO 26 April 1994: China Airlines Flight 140
CFIT 26 September 1997: Garuda Indonesia Flight 152
TOGO 16 February 1998: China Airlines Flight 676 (Taiwan)
TOGO 14 April 2010: Aerounion Flight 302,
???? 14 August 2013: UPS Flight 1354

TOGO 12 November 2001: American Airlines Flight 587

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Airbus_A300#Accidents_and_incidents
acmi
acmi 1
too busy trying to keep it in the air
brentlyhowell
Brently Howell 1
"The plane, which took off from Louisville, Kentucky, went down around 4:45 a.m. on a street that runs parallel to the Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport, Mayor William Bell said" This came from the CNN report

http://www.cnn.com/2013/08/14/us/alabama-cargo-plane-crash/index.html?hpt=hp_inthenews

Could they have possibly confused a highway with the runway?
vanstaalduinenj
Jon Van Staalduinen 1
Highly unlikely, runways light up like Christmas tree. Weather clear, bird strike unlikely at that time of morning as well,
preacher1
preacher1 1
Well, the NTSB guy says there was a steep dive from 9 grand but tail section is still smoldering and the can't get to the boxes
hviswanathan
Hari Viswanathan 1
Really sad, our prayers to the family members. Really curious as to what the NTSB finds here. 2013 has so far been a bad year for aviation (even though the fatalities have been low).
grude
grude 1
Always sad. My heart goes out to the families.
TXCAVU
Elizabeth Robillard 1
Saw picture of the clipped trees and power lines. Look like they had a "shave" with the bark stripped off.
TXCAVU
Elizabeth Robillard 1
Birmingham Mayor William Bell says Birmingham firefighters found the dead bodies of the pilot and copilot about 100 yards from the fuselage, ABC 33/40 reported, citing sources.
"I can confirm they were killed in the crash,". He added that there were no other casualties reported.
vanstaalduinenj
Jon Van Staalduinen 1
Ok a bigger and more tragic mystery is how the pilots escaped the plane yet still died, just awful my heart goes out to those guys
COYOTEHUNTER
COYOTEHUNTER 1
I just hope the black boxes were still intact... We need the data to hopefully, prevent a similar accident in the future.
alexster4324
Alec Cohen 1
Its a sad day but being that this is america where it happened and being that it is a European manufacturer and im an airbus guy dont get me wrong this particular aircraft was built in 2002 but the start of production is 1974 it is a older aircraft and a older design so it could have had faulty design and yeah RIP the crew and condolences to the family and friends of those involved
alejandroreyes
alejandro reyes 1
F.R.M.S...
tduggan2010
Tim Duggan 1
I have been trying to find the same sort of "immediate" NTSB on-the-spot news conference footage as seen with Asiana 214 at KSFO, and don't see it happening in this case.

Any ideas as to why?
ArthurNetteler
Arthur Netteler 1
Having flown in and out of Birmingham at least a hundred times during my 35 years in the cockpit. I will say that during night operations it has one of most deceiving approaches, especially during low visibility and low ceiling weather. I did aborts more there than any other airport I flew into. The ridge line can become imposable to see at times on Visual Approaches in marginal ceilings.
vanstaalduinenj
Jon Van Staalduinen 1
Experienced pilot that must have flown into that airport many times, how can they rule out mechanical problems so fast?
charles77598
Charles Ramsey 1
Although the Sunrise was 6:09 eastern or central time the incident happened before that and they had overcast and rain. The sun was hidden no matter what in this case I am sure. I am sure this was not the cause of the incident. I do not know what was the cause but it seemed to be unusual for the decent rate to be so fast. I would start there looking for the cause.
vanstaalduinenj
Jon Van Staalduinen 1
Ntsb has dismissed fire as cause, by the pics I have seen that makes sense
DFlorian
Dennis Florian 1
First, I'm extending my condolences to the family and UPS flight department. My thoughts are that this was either an unstable visual approach gone bad or that the cargo shifted in the load and put the CG out of limits for the aircraft. Reason: Aircraft flightaware data seems to indicate a higher than usual rate of descent moments before the accident.
lukemcurtis
Luke Curtis 1
I work as a vendor for UPS and though I'm not sure what all happened, I do know that there is no way that the the cargo could have shifted enough on the jet to have caused this crash. The cargo on an A-300 is loaded into 31 (if I'm not mistaken) "cans" or containers in which packages are loaded in such a way to allow very minimal movement. Each "can" is carefully checked and signed off to verify that it is securely in place and locked down. My condolences and prayers to the families of the pilots.
tduggan2010
Tim Duggan 1
Hey everyone. This is indeed a mystery, and a tragedy for those involved. The facts will come out, eventually.

Meanwhile, I stumbled across this video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lu4evcRy8gM

I've never flown the DC-8; sat in a simulator once as an observer.

The above ( ^ ^ ^ ) prompted another. It is here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iOEyz_gsr_s

Some of those UPS DC-8s are there, in storage in Roswell, NM.

At about 2:45 in the "graveyard" video is a former CAL B737-300, Ship #345. I have actually flown that jet.

Eerie. And, sad.

I hope we can enjoy these videos, as fans of aviation. In memory of all who may die for their love of this passion.
swishere2c
jim swisher 1
We can review previous NOTAMs. Why the main runway was closed mass error on that morning for airmen arrival. Then why not open. Something was going on to change arrivals and not reported. Wondering what the airport had in mind for post 6 am departures. Read "FAA"... Not being a hard ass. NOTAMs are only good before we go. Inflight and arrival/field advise (company/OPS chatter box is good stuff) are very high on my arrival situ. Talk to me buddy... good for standard let down and arrival...
pestigyula
GYULA SZICK 1
Deepest condolences to the families of the crew involved.
ecipcic
eric cipcic 1
Is there any truth to some bystanders saying the aircraft was on fire prior to impact??
preacher1
preacher1 1
Latest NTSB update is posted in FA NEW SQUAWKS, + another post with comments below it.
onceastudentpilot
tim mitchell 1
Does anyone know if they were at IMTOY or BASKN?
timothypilot
timothy lombard 1
My very deepest condolences to the families of the crews God bless
tallamramakrishnaa
ramakrishna tallam 1
http://www.trendsrtk.blogspot.in/2013/08/ups-cargo-jet-collision-in-alabama-was.html#.UiThcH_xxKY
On August 14th 2013, Wednesday- A jet called UPS cargo crashed in Birmingham, Alabama was killed two crew members in the accident. The investigation was going by removing autopilot from the jet which shows till the last occurrance before crashes, said Federal investigation.
vanstaalduinenj
Jon Van Staalduinen 1
I know the ups 747 had similiar fate, I thought those batteries prohibited from flight cargo?
preacher1
preacher1 2
5 are overseas airlines. Could it just be that Airbus has outsold Boeing over there?
preacher1
preacher1 2
I wouldn't beat myself up over liking the bus. There are lot's of them flying and there will always be a banter back and forth between them and the Boeing crowd. A big part of us haven't flown them so we have to stick with what we know. That said,I just have a gut feeling that you won't see a design problem here or it would have surfaced long ago. Mechanical, maybe, but I have a feeling that something else will surface after the boxes are recovered and what ever it was caused them to try and get down quickly, not even giving time for a distress call. RIP crew.
sparkie624
sparkie624 2
No way. I have driven that street at night. The crew would have never had seen the road and the runway would have been lite up like a Christmas tree
Doobs
Dee Lowry 1
But Yes Sparkie, but what about the angle of attack on approach and the hills that surround the runway? The runway could be lit up like a christmas tree but something on a visual approach was not normal. Rate of decent? Obviously, but why? To avoid the hills? A visual impairment? Angle of Attack on approach at that rate would put them in a situation that they could not recover. The Crew had a warning..."Pull up"...and they most likely did but it was way to late. The hills, I feel played a major part of this unfortunate accident. God Bless the UPS family. I know after 35yrs with my company and a bird goes down, I feel the pain. And I have been thru several. The airlines, whether it be commercial or cargo...we are all family...and it is really a tight relationship. Even though I did not know the crew I just want to say ...thankyou for your dedication and you are now in a great place with my fallen crewmembers who sacificed their lives...on 9/11. You will never be forgotten. R.I.P.
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
Then with that statement, it sounds like your are insinuating pilot error's and not faulty hardware... I do not know 6 crashes very similar in nature... that is a lot of errors.

One of my biggest concerns over Airbus vs Boeing is that Airbus believes that the airplane's computers are better than the pilot and thus have the final authority... But with that in mind crews can turn that function off. If those crashes did not, maybe there is a severe flaw in the programming.
preacher1
preacher1 2
How does one brand outselling the other insinuate pilot error? You just need to get on back to MSP.LOL
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
My message was supposed to be under Ron, not yours, clicked the wrong reply.
preacher1
preacher1 1
put your glasses on old man.LOL
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
The road I remember is VERY dark and was not lite up at all. It would have been next to impossible for them to see it. Furthermore, street lights look a world of difference from runway lights.
jentron
Ron Jensen 1
I wonder about the pilot to computer interaction as well. If the computer always flies the airplane, how well is the pilot prepared to take over and how difficult is it to tell the computer "My airplane" and take over?
AABABY
FRANK MARTINOLI 1
Does anybody know exactly what happened to the crew? Were they alive and passed afterward from injuries? Were they close to each other on the ground? Is all the stuff about them being outside the A/C just stories and rumors?
I watched all the NTSB press briefings and learned nothing about that.
I did get that the flight was on autopilot and disengaged 1 second before the data ended. And that the CVR ended several seconds later. Also, not a 'pull up' warning but a 'sink rate' alarm was actuated. Autothrottles were engaged and holding the normal speed for approach. Only sound was from the results of impact.
AABABY
FRANK MARTINOLI 1
Ms. Robillard-- You ended your comment about the crew with a question mark. Was that your intent? see below.

found outside the cockpit?
PhotoFinish
PhotoFinish 1
"improperly disclosed illegal batteries" by definition means prohibited but flying as supposedly some other cargo.

You can reduce the number of episodes as well as significantly reduce the amount of cargo carried by having the shipper and/or shipper's agent sign a certification that there are no undisclosed illegal or hazardous substances being shipped with a waiver of extradition.

If some cargo carriers instituted such a certification leaving shipper criminally liable for their actions, you'd have 2 groups of cargo carriers:
1) safe but underused and struggling
2) unsafe but busy and profitable


My cynicism is due to the difficulty of decking with such a cross-border international problem that touches so many different jurisdictions. Maybe, if I thought the UN were capable of timely and effective action, they could spearhead an international shipping rule or treaty that all signatories would hand over any shipper who violated the disclosure requirement which resulted in damages and/or loss of life for criminal prosecution.

No one country or regulatory body could do anything about this problem. Often the plane is made in A, the cargo carrier based in B, the cargo originates in C, the shipper may be based also in C or maybe D, the cargo is heading to E, and the fire brings down the plane in F. Without an international treaty or globally enforced rule, no one regulator can fix this problem. If not before, when an illegal shipment of batteries brings down a cargo airliner into the center of an important international city, then things will change quickly. Worse if the undisclosed illegal cargo is in the belly of a passenger airliner. But when you only lose one 2-person crew at time sporadically, the problem doesn't seem urgent enough to deal with sooner rather than later.
joelwiley
joel wiley 1
Their sighting it doesn't necessarily make it true.
preacher1
preacher1 1
I can't find it either but they apparently had one yesterday, as national news showed him this morning saying there was no engine problem and no evidence of cargo fire.
preacher1
preacher1 1
They haven't said anything about batteries. Actually there was only one witness on the ground that saw fire and there was no distress call of any kind. There was that 9000' drop but they'll have to get to the boxes to answer that.
tduggan2010
Tim Duggan 1
"jim swisher" please post a link to the relevant NOTAMS.

Thanks.
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
They can prove the engines were running or not running by the way the blades would be bent,and that information could have been noted within 5 minutes of them being on the field. As far as other mechanical issues, not sure what they are going on. If the NTSB said no mechanical, you can bet they have the supporting data. I do not think that this will be another TWA-800 as the FBI is not over seeing it.
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
The only one that really fits is "CFIT".

If had been anything else there would have been notations to ATC. The chance off all the coms going down and not able to transmit are nil to none. If there had been a fire in the engine or cargo bin.
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
I agree... Fire did not happen until after impact.
AWAAlum
AWAAlum 1
Probably an over simplification, but hundreds of thousands of people are admitted to hospitals with injuries, only to die later. It's definitely a puzzler how they ended up outside, at least at this time, but entirely believable once they did get out their injuries were so severe that survival wasn't possible.
preacher1
preacher1 1
I think we are getting into the general are of it. Like Luke says here below, that cargo shift is not weighing real heavy on my mind, but I'm thinkin' going to 18 has something to do with it. We have a crosswind runway at FSM also but it has to be a mighty stout wind or a GA aircraft to use it. While having the length, I think if they ever gave it to an RJ or big iron pilot, they'd have a stroke.
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
No chance what so ever... NTSB has already proved this was not the case in either the Engines or cargo.
onceastudentpilot
tim mitchell 1
just the sound of 4 engines whining at the the same
PhotoFinish
PhotoFinish 1
Fairly similar to Asiana 214.

Daily NTSB press conferences / briefings near the end of the investigative day.
Then a copy of video footage shows up on twitter/youtube in the evening, and a link shows up in the squawks usually about 10-11pm EDT (DC time).

So far there have been 3 daily briefings:
1) we getting ready to begin, the tail is still smoldering and are unable to get the black boxes (orange? boxes)

2) flight recorders have been recovered, on the way to DC. Hope recorder have data.

3) flight data recorders have been cut open and recording preliminarily auditioned. Data present!pre info forthcoming in th coming days.

The difference is that the UPS crash happened before dawn, in the dark of night at a time when most are asleep. There is little or no video available. There are few eyewitness accounts. The only person involved who survived was the tower controller, who had minimal involvement.

In contrast the Asiana crash happened mid afternoon at SFO, a busy international hub airport, with lots of eyewitnesses, some just feet away on a 747-4 waiting near the end of the runways or departure. There were plane spotters who saw, and videoed the crash. There were hundreds of survivors (many hospitalized), including 4 flight crew and numerous cabin crew. There was so much more info about the flight and the crash available before the black boxes were analyzed. There was so much more going on.

But the NTSB process has been virtually identical. There just is so much less to talk about so far in this crash. No one can say with any level of certainty what happened because all the facts not known yet.
southgeek
stacey go 1
By standers not accurate.
brentlyhowell
Brently Howell 1
Duh, never thought of that. In that same article people witnessed plane flying lower than usual and is sounded as if it was sputtering. Pretty sure you guys have read all the stuff so I'm just repeating everything I bet.
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
Registration: N155UP
C/n / msn: 841
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
Very interesting statistics... Wonder what to attribute that to.. training or hardware???
PhotoFinish
PhotoFinish 1
It's all below, and even links to plane/ flight data, etc.
preacher1
preacher1 1
I'm thinkin' anticipation of 6, since no NOTAM; sudden turn to line up and dive bomb to make the approach for 18. Possibility of cargo shift at that time messing up CG and not being able to recover. Hopefully NTSB can pull the box data pretty quick and get it out.
PhotoFinish
PhotoFinish 2
I listened to every word of the NTSB press briefing. He never said there no cargo fire before impact. The ambiguous comment was from the discussion of the engines. He was saying there was no fire or uncontained explosion IN THE ENGINES prior to impact.

Some news outlets have ascribed these comments to the plane overall, which is incorrect.

We may conclude that there was not a cargo fire before impact because it has not been mentioned by NTSB (and might argue that if it were important, it would've been mentioned) but assumption by negative is not as strong as confirmation by positive.
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
If there was a fire, fire warning, even an over heat warning or caution... We would known about it by now...
Doobs
Dee Lowry 1
Maybe what the "bystanders" saw were the powerlines and possible transformers lighting up when the aircraft clipped them. Also, there is evidence of, not only powerlines but branches from trees ingested in the engines. Possible Compressor Stall or Surge could result and a external fire from the engines could explain what the bystanders thought they saw.
PhotoFinish
PhotoFinish 1
The sparking from clipping the powerlines was certainly mentioned as a possible explanation for eyewitness accounts.

If fire prior to impact were an issue, we'd probably already heard about it. Sometimes you can learn from what they say, as well as what they don't. They tend to mention the things that merit a second look or more attention from the investigators. It would've been nice to have confirmation one way or another, as fires starting in the cargo hold have been frequent csuses of cargo freighters recently.

Cargo fire was certainly an issue after the plane was engulfed post impact. The tail was smoldering and greatly delayed retrieval of the black boxes.
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
By standers could have seen the red nav light, being much closer to the ground and then when it exploded... (OH MY GOD IT WAS ON FIRE)... Many people see what they want to see, and others just make things up to get attention, and actually no nothing.
Doobs
Dee Lowry 1
Photo, the Cargo wasn't my focus of a fire. I was just thinking that the injestion of powerlines and tree branches from the engines could have produced a momentary flame.ie., possible compressor stall or surge.
PhotoFinish
PhotoFinish 2
That's certainly possible. However the engines were one area that there was some level of information. The discussion of the power plant team revealed that there was no fire or uncontained explosions in the engines prior to impact, but ingestion of materials I to engines could've created some flames that would've been visible to witnesses.

But so would sparking powerlines as they were being clipped.

This is one that we'll get much more detail when the report comes out.
Doobs
Dee Lowry 1
So true. Thanx Photo.
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
With the wing breaking off, the sheer heat of the Exhaust pipe could have caused that with out any other items. Others could have contributed, but not necessarily required for the end result.
PhotoFinish
PhotoFinish 1
Might not have been the problem in Birmingham today. Too soon to tell. But had been a problem in other crashes of cargo airliners.
preacher1
preacher1 1
reports were that it was closed for RUNWAY LIGHT REPAIR and no NOTAM. They had been doing routine runway maintenance the previous month but no closure. Don't know if there was an earlier NOTAM about that or not.
preacher1
preacher1 1
I hadn't paid any attention to the mug shot until swish said something.LOL
gearup328
Peter Steitz 1
They were criticized by talking too much-too soon in the Asiana crash. That is unlike the NTSB.
preacher1
preacher1 1
Well. they are apparently having them as they were on National News this morning and now FA has it posted under NEW SQUAWKS. Are they scheduled or just random, or do you know?
preacher1
preacher1 1
yep. I wonder why UPS has got those and not FedEx?
gearup328
Peter Steitz 0
Today, the NTSB ruled out any cargo fire or mechanical problems.
preacher1
preacher1 1
Unless I have missed something, the haven't ruled out anything yet. They said there was NO SIGN OF UNCONTAIED ENGINE FAILURE but they just got the boxes up to DC last night. As far as experienced pilots and many times into/out of BHM, you are probably correct but probably most on 6/24. IDK
AABABY
FRANK MARTINOLI 1
As you said, no sign of engine fire. Not a word about anything else. I watched the briefing too and noted the way it was said.
PhotoFinish
PhotoFinish 0
No, not likely. In that case, they would've just landed it on the street.

What everyone is thinking but no saying clearly, is that it seems to be a cargo fire. The plane dropped quickly because of the fire alarm from the cargo area. The pilots would want to get down to a flat piece of ground as soon as possible.

Not finding the runway is often a simple matter of fire burning through control mechanisms, either hydraulic or electronic and/or breach of cockpit by smoke. So the pilots tend to have limited control of the airplane not long after the initial fire alarm and/or can barely see the controls when they are operating.

That's why this crash makes one sad, while Asiana makes one mad.

The reality is the biggest culprit of cargo fires are improperly disclosed illegal batteries (usually originating in China). So in a sense, this one can be maddening as well.
tduggan2010
Tim Duggan 1
THIS POST will (I hope) appear on top...it is reply to a question posed by "sparkie624" earlier.

The question related to the Flight Control logic, as compared to (for instance) the A320-series, and in relation to the years-ago airshow demonstration CFIT accident. To remind:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Air_France_Flight_296

MY experience was on the fore-runner of the A-300-600 series, the A300-B4 type. The -B4 is (was) a three-pilot design. The -600 series is a two-pilot cockpit, updated and based on its earlier cousin.

Here is a link to Scribd.com documents that help to describe the A300-600 Flight Controls, and how they are different from the later FBW iterations that Airbus/EADS have adopted in subsequent designs:

http://www.scribd.com/doc/57513686/A300-600-Flight-Controls

Short relevant snippet:
"The Primary Flight Controls are mechanically controlled and hydraulically actuated." (Page 1.09.10)

Next:
"Control of the elevator, aileron and rudder actuators (and back-up manual control of the THS motors) is via mechanical linkages from the pilots' controls..."
(Page 1.09.11)

The A300-600 was an advancement from the earlier (B4) version, with (I believe) early EFIS instruments and such. A sort of "hybrid" (for Airbus) between their first entry into the commercial airliner business (the A300-B4), and their product today.

Personal note: I was always amused, first time I went to training, at Airbus' notion of naming systems, especially the hydraulic systems. Whereas Boeing has a conventional, and logical method...Left ('L') or Right ('R'), or #1 or #2 or later Left, Center ('C') and right...or, if FOUR, then 1, 2, 3, 4....etc. Airbus chose to go with "colors" to name their hydraulic systems. Odd, and still makes me shake my head.....

sparkie624
sparkie624 0
Great info. Thanks for posting. I am at 28,000 ft on my netbook, so it is very hard to read, but rest assured, I will be going through those links. It seems crazy to color code the Hydraulic Systems... I much prefer system 1 2 and 3... Atleast from a mechanics point of view.
preacher1
preacher1 1
Well, with the NTSB go team arriving yesterday evening, hopefully we'll have a prelim in a few days. I'm sure retrieving the boxes will be a priority but as of yesterday evening, the tail section was still smoldering and they had not been able to retrieve them. I hope the prolonged heat did not contaminate them. That 9000' dive will be the center of attention I'm sure.
speedbird347
Derek Vaughn 1
2013 is shaping up to be a rough year for aviation.
speedbird347
Derek Vaughn 1
2013 is shaping up to be a bad year for aviation.
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
Those boxes can stand up to 1000 deg C (over 1800 deg F) for 8 hours. I am sure it was not near that hot... I think all the data should be there... If not, maybe the QAR (which should have been up in the nose area) would most likely have the data, even though it will take longer to get to that area.
Nrice91
Noah Rice -1
Who's responsible for paying the destroyed cargo?
sparkie624
sparkie624 3
Insurance... But there is a much deeper issue in regards to loss of life. Cargo, no matter how much of it takes a back seat to that.
TXCAVU
Elizabeth Robillard 4
Really? Noah, 2 people died and you want to debate an obvious point about who pays for the freight?
Nrice91
Noah Rice 0
That doesn't answer my question.
preacher1
preacher1 4
That is a bad tacky question, but to answer it, UPS and or their insurance will get the bill. It may not be highlighted but there may or may not be a recovery from the scene, as, believe it or not, some will not be damaged, and it will be delivered. Or they could just decide on a total write off. They are probably self insured up to a point with umbrella coverage from Lloyds or somebody.
THRUSTT
THRUSTT 1
I think it's pretty obvious that everything in this age is covered by insurance... Surely everyone knows that... or don't they?
Av8orjeff
Jeff Smith 1
The first person to ask a stupid insensitive question is who should have to pay for the destroyed cargo.
That would be you, Noah.
hk119
horace sawyer 0
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

UPS A300 crashes on approach 8-14-13 to BHM from SDF

Hope these guys are alive and ok, no word yet. Strange weather in the south this year. Probably a contributing factor

http://www.wkyt.com/wymt/home/headlines/Crews-on-the-scene-of-large-plane-crash-in-Birmingham-Alabama-219544751.html
hk119
horace sawyer 1
Mayor says they're dead. More information now in this article:

http://blog.al.com/spotnews/2013/08/plane_crashes_near_birmingham-.html
sparkie624
sparkie624 -2
Just thinking out loud.... (so please don't flame me too bad, it is just a thought and not necessarily an opinion)... Referencing the Airbus Air France airshow crash where the pilot commanded up and the plane's computer commanded down, is this a possibility of what could have happened here???

Opinions???? Just thinking out loud.
tduggan2010
Tim Duggan 2
The A300-600 doesn't have the same computer flight control logic as the A320 family, and those designed later. Based on my experience, years ago, flying the A-300B4 model.

The first A300 was "traditional" flight control design. It was a 3-pilot airplane, with a Flight Engineer position and panel. The -600 is an update of that design, with some computerization and automation to allow removal of the FE panel and functions. In a way, it is similar to the MD-11, when compared to its cousin, the DC-10.
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
This a/c must have been updated, because it was stated that they were a crew of 2. But Fedex upgraded their DC-10's and MD-11's to 2 pilot cockpits.
PhotoFinish
PhotoFinish 1
"The A300-600 also has a similar cockpit to the A310, eliminating the need for a flight engineer. The FAA issues a single type rating which allows operation of both the A310 and A300-600."

http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Airbus_A300
PhotoFinish
PhotoFinish 1
In fact, the earlier freighter variant, A300B4-200FF: An A300 with a "forward-facing" crew compartment, was the world's first 2-crew widebody airliner, and includes some of the A310's and A300-600's digital avionics.
preacher1
preacher1 1
What year was that done? The 767 started around 84.
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
You can tell I am a Boeing Mechanic and not an Airbus Mechanic LOL...
PhotoFinish
PhotoFinish 1
"A300B4-200FF: An A300 with a "forward-facing" crew compartment. The world's first 2-crew widebody airliner. Includes some of the A310's and A300-600's digital avionics. First saw service with Garuda Indonesia in 1982."
spatr
spatr 1
onceastudentpilot
tim mitchell 1
Eyewitness says he saw flames coming from plane.....this may be a possible bird strike and the flame may have been from the ingestion.....to soon to say though
sparkie624
sparkie624 2
It would have been one heck of a bird to knock an engine out of commission, and then again if that was true, then he still had another good motor to work with.
onceastudentpilot
tim mitchell 1
really kinda of depends on how many were ingested......it could have been a flock of geese or a some other type of migratory birds that got spooked whenever they heard it coming.
glen4cindy
Glen England 1
Not sure it would have taken "one heck of a bird"....

Here is a video of a 757 that took a bird ingestion on takeoff and had flames shooting out of the engine. This could have been similar to what people saw and heard:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_tLF-3d3PJk
sparkie624
sparkie624 2
That time of night (or morning) very few birds are flying around. That would be the long shot of the century. Do not see that as a Bird Strike. Further more, there would be more evidence... Birds leave debrie that will be found if that is the case.
onceastudentpilot
tim mitchell 2
to early to discount anything.....plus it happened around dawn.....I go to work at 4am....I have heard birds that early in the morning......like I've said before; everything is just speculation.
AWAAlum
AWAAlum 1
Just playing the devil's advocate here, but, there are nocturnal birds, although I'm not sure any of the local birds fly or forage in flocks - don't believe so. A note of interest: Canadian geese do fly at night. But you have galaxies more knowledge about the evidence a bird strike would leave than I ... I having zero. And what is the likelihood of both engines ingesting them? Probably pretty low. Plus, hasn't the NTSB ruled out problems with the engines?
southgeek
stacey go 1
Birds don't fly much in the dark, except for owls...
preacher1
preacher1 1
As he said, they could have been spooked but the fact that he did some moving around and tried for a short runway or just a flat spot, something happened. Now that they have the boxes, hopefully we'll know before long.
onceastudentpilot
tim mitchell 1
tell the birds here in NC that; they must have their instrument ratings...lol
onceastudentpilot
tim mitchell 1
I believe that is pretty much off the table..... now it is pretty much a waiting game for the facts....only one incident comes to mind of that ever happening.....some of the more "mature" members may know of others
sparkie624
sparkie624 2
Might want to tell the same thing to the birds in Alabama... LOL
joelwiley
joel wiley 1
There are bunches in California that didn't read that one either...LOL
onceastudentpilot
tim mitchell 1
looks like we need to call NORAD and have them to release the falcons...lol
joelwiley
joel wiley 1
Better be the eagles. They have two engines to better the odds of flying. As they say "An Army of One best take no casualties" ...lol
AWAAlum
AWAAlum 1
Off the main track a bit here, I vividly remember when on the approach to Sky Harbor in Phoenix, the city of Tempe was filling what had been a dry river bed to make up part of the new Tempe Town Centre hoping to draw more people to the area. It was directly under the flight path, very very close to the airport. I used to sit in my office at America West HQ only 5 floors up and watch the planes coming in. Pilots everywhere were up in arms, the main concern being that the water would lure a lot of birds. The city went forward with the plan, and thank goodness those concerns have not come to fruition.
THRUSTT
THRUSTT 1
Probably Nightowls...
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
Explain (we are not limited on how long it can be here..)
jdesacias
juan de sacias -1
Who crash airplane
JoanieLynn
Joan Murdock -1
Probably find out after the investigation is finished that both pilots were asleep at the controls. They would most likely be familiar with the approach into Birmingham being a regularly schedule flight and most likely their domicile airport.
jhakunti
Jayden Hakunti -1
i'm gonna take a guess and say there was an explosion on-board.
preacher1
preacher1 2
Well, it wasn't their domicile. Sleepy, maybe; Complacent & tired, maybe; but asleep, no. There was voice activity on the CVR.
jentron
Ron Jensen 1
Its my understanding from reading these posts and others, that they probably would not have been too familiar with the approach into runway 18 and that the terrain wasn't flat on the approach.
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
Are you kidding me... The Pilots... Both are to blame... Go to google and look up "CFIT" acronym.
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
I am going to take a guess and guess you were wrong.. The NTSB has already ruled that out.
onceastudentpilot
tim mitchell 1
Louisville is listed as the domicile for the a300 fleet.....this was probably their first stop of the day.
onceastudentpilot
tim mitchell 2
preacher1
preacher1 1
Probably gonna be their last. They had already done 2 places in IL I think and then came into SDF before leaving for BHM

[This comment has been downvoted. Show anyway.]

[This poster has been suspended.]

preacher1
preacher1 4
A little immature at best. Brand war is one thing. Loss of life is another.

I wonder why the media is not making a deal out of this yet like they did 214. Oh yeah, only 2 people and they were homeboys, not foreigners.
AABABY
FRANK MARTINOLI 1
Preacher1 - Pictures I've seen show the forward section mostly intact. Not even glass breakout.
Any thoughts on what caused the deaths? Surely they were buckled up. Whiplash similar to the death of race car drivers?
preacher1
preacher1 3
Unless it was just force of impact. I saw the same pictures and at that time thought the pilots may have survived. It wasn't til a later update they said they didn't. You know, that wreck Dale Earnhart had years ago didn't look all that bad in the scheme of things but that was the reason for his death. He was buckled good but after his death
the HANS(head&neck restraint)devices came out, so idk. Anything at this time would be pure speculation.
allench1
allench1 1
Hay Preach I noticed the crushing of the lower half of the nose and cockpit area which more than likely came back and up into the pilots. Such a sad loss, hope it ends up being what some witnesses saw, that the plane was on fire before they made ground contact. For some reason they were trying to get down quick doing 200 kt's at 500 feet, losing 9000' in 2 min. just saying. Hope you are doing well!
SootBox
SootBox 1
They were a fair distance away from the fire too, if they had lived through the crash and were incapacitated, they would have escaped the fire.
preacher1
preacher1 1
Yeah, something had to happen that caused them to have their hands full and try to get down. Puzzling part to me is that there was no distress call. I mean, with a headset on and just a button to push, it looks like something would have been said. We are doing fine. I'll Email you after while
timewright
timewright 1
If there was a fire, could it have knocked out the comm?
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
Possible, but not very likely. I could be wrong, but just a gut feeling that the fire did not start until after the crash. I am not sold on the fact that it was a cargo fire from the beginning.,.. But time will tell.
preacher1
preacher1 1
Anything is possible; it just looks like going from an approach on 6 to turn and get around for 18, if that is what happened according to a BHM local, somebody had to say something. They just got the boxes a few ago. Maybe we'll get some solid answers in the next day or 2. If it was in fact a fire, I think it will come out quickly.
sparkie624
sparkie624 3
It is fairly Idiotic... Where I am not an airbus fan, we do not now it it as a bad bus or a bad bus driver so to speak. Will save that analogy until we know more.
umcima1964
guy lever 1
Agree Karl...we have no idea what caused this accident
spatr
spatr 5
Very idiotic, unless this is a comment designed to take a dig at the usual Airbus haters that post after an incident, then ok.
RRKen
Kenneth Schmidt 2
Jason, I find your comment crude and callous considering the loss of life.
mwenkman
mark wenkman -4
Remember NYC crash- Rudder and tail snapping off. Chances the aircraft was overloaded and stressed out 10 years of service.
preacher1
preacher1 2
You know, I have always wondered about that. They laid that off to Pilot error because of overdoing it on the rudder pedal. Airbus is making such a big deal nowadays about how a pilot can't go outside of the flight envelope without a law change. He did.
glen4cindy
Glen England 2
Before the NYC crash, and the Airbus rudder incident, I always thought that I was a "rule" of aviation that by simply manipulation of the flight controls, a pilot could not "break" the airplane. Seems that isn't true with Airbus.

Wonder if that follows with other manufacturers?
preacher1
preacher1 1
Supposedly, that is the way Airbus is set but not on this. Your assumption is incorrect. Airbus locks out the pilot if they try and exceed the flight envelope, without a law change. I personally think that's crap. Most anything will take a momentary overload, and in an upset, you generally don't have time for anything but to handle it.
JetMech24
JetMech24 1
The NTSB found that the vertical stabilizer was subjected to more than twice what it was certified for, so yes, things will snap if under twice the max load it is rated for.
preacher1
preacher1 1
Per your post above don't you think twice the certification would be outside the envelope??
JetMech24
JetMech24 1
Physically on the vertical stabilizer, yes it is, but the system does not monitor forces on the stabs or wings, only speed, altitude, attitude, configuration, stuff of that sort. Which is where the limiter would come in to play, it would prevent that load aspect on the vertical from going outside of its envelope. But the aircraft itself, as a whole, never left the envelope until that stab was gone.
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
It sounds like they may have been trying to preform a SLIP that was beyond the capable limits of the a/c.
preacher1
preacher1 1
with the AP on? I could see it manually but not with the AP
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
I saw a report that said the FO was using excessive rudder... Cannot imagine what else he would be trying to do... Just opposite of the Asiana Crew, may he thought the A/P was off.
preacher1
preacher1 1
I think that report was on the AA crash in 91. I haven't seen that on this one. It seem like as far as the pilots were concerned, all was normal on this.idk
THRUSTT
THRUSTT 1
I don't think those laws were on the 300's...
JetMech24
JetMech24 1
That plane never left the flight envelope is the thing. The NTSB named one cause as the F/O's over excessive use of the rudder. Another cause was Airbus didn't have some sort of limiter for the rudder while it was in a "dirty" configuration (it only applied for a cruise configuration). And the last cause was American not properly training their crews on how to handle the aircraft while in wake turbulence.
preacher1
preacher1 1
Well, I use "Flight Envelope" loosely. That limiter, if they were going to have one on there, should have been for all of it, rather than just cruise, but, as you say, AA has some liability there on training. That much movement just indicates the guy didn't know what to do. That said, either PNF didn't know either or didn't have time to say anything.
JetMech24
JetMech24 1
You are correct, and that was the NTSB's recommendation about the limiter, but I do not recall for sure if the FAA mandated it or not, I WANT to say that they did, but not for sure. As for the PNF, I don't think he really knew what was happening if I recall correctly.
preacher1
preacher1 1
I really can't remember about the FAA. I was thinkin' Airbus did something and AA promised to. I think you are right about the PNF, just no time. BTW, final NTSB briefing is posted on NEW SQUAWKS. It appears the AP flew it into the ground.
donthemask
Harry Callaghan -5
This particular jet is over twenty years old, I believe the last one came off the assembly line in 1989, the last order for delivery taken was in 1991.
UPS can't afford to purchase updated equipment for their pilots. Cheap unconscionable b_st_rds.
Even some third world, Asian countries are smart enough to update outdated equipment like this.
preacher1
preacher1 3
Not sure where your information comes from. I haven't looked it up my self but here is bizjets post below and I believe this has been confirmed by the NTSB:


biz jets 2 days ago 2 Downvote
Upvote

Aircraft first flew on March 11 2003 and was delivered new to UPS on February 13 2004, photo from rye man/flickr; N155UP A300F-622R msn 0841
spatr
spatr 2
You do know that 155UP was built in 2003 right? Also, UPS has an average fleet age of just under 15 years, hardly undated. But like I've said before, why let facts get in the way of an opinion like that.
preacher1
preacher1 3
Get'him!!!!lol
JetMech24
JetMech24 1
Plus they have a order in at Boeing for some 777's.
Doobs
Dee Lowry 1
20 years is really not that old. Just because it doesn't have that new car smell doesn't mean she has to go to the desert. Look at the B-52, nicknamed "Buff" (Big Ugly Fat F___er). She did her solo flight on April 15, 1952. With modifications and revisions in her 61 years of flight, she's still a powerful influence in our military sector. The USAF intends to keep it's B-52 fleet in service until 2045- nearly 90 years after it actually went into service. Tells you a lot about the integrity of Boeing engineering. It's not unusual for a commercial aircraft to fly for 30 years or more.
JetMech24
JetMech24 1
I wonder why they have a order in at Boeing for some 777's? And, even to this day, are still recieving brand new 767's.
joelwiley
joel wiley 2
Not to mention the DC-3, last one off the line in 1947.
Doobs
Dee Lowry 2
Absolutely...along with another "work-horse"...the B-727. Remember the 727QC (Quick Change) ? Cargo by night- passengers by day.
mbillquist
Mark Billquist 0
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

UPS cargo plane crashes on approach to Birmingham, Alabama, airport

(CNN) -- A UPS cargo plane crashed Wednesday morning on approach to the Birmingham, Alabama, airport, according to an FAA spokeswoman.
It was unclear whether anyone was injured in the crash of the A300 aircraft, which happened outside the fence of Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport, according to Toni Bast of the Birmingham Airport Authority.
The aircraft was headed to Birmingham from Louisville, Kentucky, FAA spokeswoman Kathleen Bergen said.

http://www.cnn.com/2013/08/14/us/alabama-cargo-plane-crash/index.html
swishere2c
jim swisher 0
Always saddened to hear of any crew loss. Nights and milk runs hold their fair share of surprises. NOTAMs must have noted primary runway out. Unusual runway heading approach. From Flight Levels current altimeter setting must have been passed. Altimeter/... set. read back setting. Review of approach plate discussion reference DME/ALT with error setting may have drove them low. No info on company freq for PIREP advise...
spacehistorian
Robert Carver -1
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

Airbus dispatches response team to UPS plane crash site

The statement confirmed the deaths of the aircraft’s pilot and co-pilot and stated the plane was operating a scheduled service flight from Louisville, Ky., to Birmingham. Airbus identified the plane, registered under the number N155UP, as MSN 841, and said the aircraft had accumulated about 11,000 flight hours on some 6,800 flights since its delivery to UPS “from the production line” in 2003. “In line with the ICAO Annex 13 international convention, Airbus will provide full technical assistance to the French BEA as well as to the authorities who will be responsible for the accident investigation. A team of specialists from Airbus is being dispatched to Alabama,” the statement reads.

http://blog.al.com/live/2013/08/airbus_dispatches_response_tea.html
runway18escanaba
runway18escanaba 0
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

FAA: UPS jet crashes in Birmingham, Ala.

15 minutes ago

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — A large UPS cargo plane crashed early Wednesday near an airport in Birmingham, Ala.

http://news.yahoo.com/faa-ups-jet-crashes-birmingham-ala-111011544.html
westfly
kyle estep 0
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

UPS down in Birmingham

A UPS A300 is down just short of the airport. 2 crew on board that were not immediately accounted for.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/08/14/crash-ups-urgent-idUSL2N0GF0BR20130814?feedType=RSS&feedName=industrialsSector&rpc=43
preacher1
preacher1 1
Don't know about the rest but it has been reported that there was not a NOTAM on the closure. That said, they had been doing various things over the past few weeks, mx wise, but no closure. There may have been an original issued but to date there had not been a full runway closure.
rtjorgenson
Ryan Jorgenson -1
This reminded me of the American A300-600 that crashed in Queens in 2001, due to the crew's excessive use of rudder which caused the vertical stabilizer to split. Not to speculate, but it will be interesting to hear what the NTSB finds.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Airlines_Flight_587
spatr
spatr 6
Really? "Not to speculate?" right after you speculate.
sparkie624
sparkie624 3
I am not sure I agree... Unless they were doing severe slip to loose altitude there would be no reason to use that much rudder.
PhotoFinish
PhotoFinish 1
Agreed. I immediately thought of American 587 where an entire passenger-filled A300 went down in Queens, but can't imagine that they'd have the need to use so much rudder. They were pretty much lined up with the runway, by the time they reached cruising altitude near Louisville.

Plus, they've had ample warning against aggressive use of rudder.

But you wonder about fatigue on a plane with known structural weakness. But as, has been mentioned, the photos seemed to show a fairly intact rudder and elevators tail section on fire. What I'm not sure is how and why the tail disconnected from the fuselage. Was it a result of impact or did it happen sooner?
sparkie624
sparkie624 1
I think the rudder separation is a product of impact. Otherwise, it probably would have been at another crash scene. The American rudder if memory serves was somewhere totally different.
PhotoFinish
PhotoFinish 1
You're right. Thanks. I should've put my thinking cap on.
preacher1
preacher1 1
Yeah, like at the bottom of the bay
AABABY
FRANK MARTINOLI 2
Noon news pictures clearly show the rudder and elevator section in one piece but burning. Surely the FDR & CVR will be recovered.
Saddened by the loss. My sympathies to all relatives and friends.
sparkie624
sparkie624 2
Those Flight Recorders can survive up to 1000 deg C fire foe either 4 or 8 hours. They should survive that fire (even though probably slight discolored should still be in tact.
southgeek
stacey go 3
FYI-Birmingham is in Central Time zone. I live in neighborhood near airport. It crashed around 5am. It was completely dark. That field is elevated above the runway, dark, no lights. Weather was crap, foggy, misting/raining. I could not see the airport from my house(2 miles away as the crow flies)like I normally can.
No ILS on that rwy, no lights at touchdown points.
JoanieLynn
Joan Murdock 1
That crash was a result of a faulty rudder that was compromised earlier and fatigue finally caused the rudder to shear off.
preacher1
preacher1 2
It was still intact after impact.