Sudan Airways A310 at Khartoum on June 10th 2008, plane on fire

Last Update: April 8, 2013 / 11:23:46 GMT/Zulu time

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Incident Facts

Date of incident
Jun 10, 2008

Classification
Crash

Aircraft Type
Airbus A310

ICAO Type Designator
A310

Sudan's Civil Aviation Authority released their final report via the French BEA concluding:

The accident was due to a long flaring distance (900 meters from R/W threshold) on a wet slippery runway without selecting Auto brake and with one deactivated engine reverse in such rainy conditions. The remaining available landing distance turned out to be too short to allow the captain to stop the aircraft before the end of the runway.

Contributing factors:

The wind information was not appropriate as it was tail wind at time of landing. The crew was not aware about the aircraft ground speed and the tail wind.

The CAA analysed that following the diversion to Port Sudan due to weather the aircraft returned to Khartoum and entered a hold again for 20 minutes before the approach commenced, the crew was informed by ATC that the runway was wet. The captain (60, ATPL, 14,180 hours total, 3,088 hours on type) was pilot flying for the approach and landing, the first officer (50, ATPL, 9,879 hours total, 3,347 hours on type) was pilot monitoring. The crew complied with control clearances, the captain performed a stabilized approach to runway 36, tower reported the winds at 7 knots from 320 degrees.

The CAA analysed with these wind conditions the landing distance available would been longer than the landing distance required (safe landing possible) even with the wet runway.

However, the actual flight data, CAS of 140 knots and ground speed 155 knots, reveal the aircraft was exposed to a 15 knots tailwind, which the crew did not seem to realise. As a result of the tailwind the aircraft flared long and touched down smoothly 850-900 meters past the runway threshold, the CAA analysed that the smooth landing may have contributed to the accident.

The runway friction coefficients were poor, the pavement was slippery. Despite the information, that the runway was wet and the strong recommendation in the FCOM to do so, the captain had not engaged the autobrakes.

The crew felt the aircraft was skidding to the right after the (right hand only) thrust reverser had been deployed and deselected reverse thrust at 124 knots, the captain subsequently steered the aircraft back onto the runway center line. The CAA analysed that neither rudder deflection nor nosewheel steering input were sufficient to bring the aircraft back onto the center line, it must have been a left hand brakes input steering the aircraft back onto the center line.

32 seconds after touchdown, at a speed of 87 knots, the thrust reverser was again deployed, 80 meters short of the end of the runway. 36 seconds after touchdown the aircraft went past the runway end at a speed of 76 knots, then experiencing vertical accelerations between +2.6 and +0.72G before coming to stop. These acceleration values are far off the values necessary to induce structural damages (9G).

The CAA analysed that there had been no fire prior to the aircraft coming to a stop despite witness testimony claiming the right hand side was on fire during roll out already. There was no evidence of fire on the runway and no evidence of fire past the runway until the final position of the aircraft. The fire likely resulted from a fuel leak between the right hand engine nacelle and the right hand wing root.

The CAA analysed: "- The fire started after the aircraft stopped or it my started within the deployment of engine No. 2 thrust reverser due to some fuel leakage.

- The fuel leakage was not the result of a structure breaking but was probably the consequence of a tank puncture made by the gusty wing fluctuation as was detected during the C check and being rectified or due landing lights or antennae or by some parts thrown to the wing through the trust reverser (Airbus recommends to stow the thrust reverser at low speed so as to avoid such issues)."

The CAA analysed that a failure of the braking system was highly unlikely, the brakes appeared working after touchdown, the tyres weren't hydroplaning although there is evidence of wheel lock ups on all main tyres.

The CAA analysed further: "The investigation revealed that the fire could not be fought by the airport fire department with the required rapidity and efficiency. This was due to training as well as communications or infrastructure issues."
Incident Facts

Date of incident
Jun 10, 2008

Classification
Crash

Aircraft Type
Airbus A310

ICAO Type Designator
A310

This article is published under license from Avherald.com. © of text by Avherald.com.
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