Agree. I wonder if in non precision approach like this one, without glideslope, the PF was following a correct Flight Path Angle set by Pilots, prior to the final approach , at the correct time / intersection, to establish a simulated Glide slope. If the simulated glide path is set prior to the right location, a false glideslope signal would be shown on primary flight display of LOC and G/S. But since the rate of descent was high 1450ft per min and varying quite a bit, most probably an unstabilized approach would be a major factor.
I think the left over fuel left under center fuselage burnt in center tank.
The bay is a few hundred feet from threshold of runway. The pilot on a visual approach misjudged his landing point and touched down with his tail first due to high pitch up to avoid landing in the bay. The pilot might have applied full power to go around due to I stabilized approach but it was too late the tail broke off which resulted in LOC loss of control.
Thankfully most passengers survived, I hope. The airplane has really taken a lot of beating and passengers came out alive....pilots need to be questioned with the flight data recorder.
On final approach per FAA and all flying institutions, the aircraft must be at right speed, right configuration, stabilized approach, wether flying precision or non precision approach procedures. The pilots will have to explain what happened.
The weather winds visibility were ideal. No microbursts.
Yes. That is a high possibility right after rotation and during initial climb. Runaway elevator followed by a full elevator jam. In that case there is no chance of recovery especially when the aircraft is close to max takeoff weight and cg envelope is critical. If I remember from B747 type rating course the elevators may be split in a one side elevator jam. This explains why the aircraft is at high pitch up until a stall happened. The crew finally may have recovered one side of the elevators and the airplane dived with a differential roll to left side. This is a tragedy. There would be no hope of survival in this case. I am sure maintenance records will shed some light through NTSB investigation.
What about a runaway elevator followed by elevator jam right after rotation. Even with positive climb the pilot may be so distracted that gears up would not be requested. At the critical stage flying the airplane is the most important work at hand. I do not believe the load master screwed up or the heavy loads shifted although it could happen.
I agree. This could very well be none of the things discussed such as incorrect weight and balance, landing gear problem, microburst, or pilot error. If the pilot lost pitch control like runaway elevator and followed by a jammed elevator right after rotation and thereafter this scenario may happen. I am sure the maintenance records will be checked.