Avianca A332 near Salta on Jun 4th 2016, turbulence injures 11

Last Update: January 31, 2019 / 18:59:41 GMT/Zulu time

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Incident Facts

Date of incident
Jun 4, 2016

Classification
Accident

Airline
Avianca

Flight number
AV-965

Departure
Lima, Perú

Aircraft Registration
N279AV

Aircraft Type
Airbus A330-200

ICAO Type Designator
A332

An Avianca Airbus A330-200, registration N279AV performing flight AV-965 from Lima (Peru) to Buenos Aires Ezeiza,BA (Argentina) with 178 passengers and 10 crew, was enroute at FL410 about 90nm south of Salta,SA (Argentina) when the aircraft encountered severe turbulence causing altitude deviations of -100/+150 feet. 23 occupants received injuries as result of the upset. The aircraft continued to Buenos Aires for a safe landing about 80 minutes later. 6 cabin crew and 5 passengers received minor injuries.

Ezeiza Airport confirmed 23 injuries on board of flight AV-965.

The airline reported the aircraft had encountered turbulence over the Andes causing bumps and bruises to a number of passengers and cabin crew. The injured were assessed at Ezeiza Airport by medical staff, 10 people were taken to a hospital for further check ups and released soon after.

The occurrence aircraft remained on the ground for 6 hours, then departed Buenos Aires for the return flight.

On Jan 31st 2019 Argentina's JIAAC released their final report in Spanish only (Editorial note: to serve the purpose of global prevention of the repeat of causes leading to an occurrence an additional timely release of all occurrence reports in the only world spanning aviation language English would be necessary, a Spanish only release does not achieve this purpose as set by ICAO annex 13 and just forces many aviators to waste much more time and effort each in trying to understand the circumstances leading to the occurrence. Aviators operating internationally are required to read/speak English besides their local language, investigators need to be able to read/write/speak English to communicate with their counterparts all around the globe). The report concludes:

- The company did not report the occurrence.
- The aircraft was flying with the fasten seat belt sign illuminated, the according announcement had been made.
- part of cabin crew and passengers did not have their seat belts fastened.
- The encounter of severe turbulence did not leave time to cabin crew and passengers, who had not yet fastened their seat belts, to react and fasten the seat belt.
- Divergences with respect to communication and mandatory reports on weather services (ATS, MET) and pilot reports.

The JIAAC reported the aircraft was enroute at FL410 about 153nm north of Tucuman, when the aircraft encountered a zone of severe turbulence in clear air for approximate 20 seconds. Two doctors on board took care of the cabin crew and passengers, who received injuries during the turbulence encounter and had not fastened their seat belts. The flight crew reported the severe turbulence to ATC, maintained routine communication and continued the flight to destination. On approach to destination the flight crew requested medical services to meet the aircraft. The aircraft sustained some internal damage, several passenger oxygen mask compartments opened. The JIAAC became aware of the occurrence through media reports on Jun 5th 2016 and opened an investigation as result.

Weather services had released forecasts in the morning of Jun 4th 2016 indicating that winds (jetstream) at FL400 were mainly from west to east at 160 knots affecting flight levels 210 to 520 around the occurrence area, a weaker second jetstream occurred further south. The forecasts also suggested moderate turbulence for the occurrence area.

ATC provided the crew with reports of moderate turbulence and occasional severe turbulence. ATC had no pilot reports of turbulence along the route of the occurrence aircraft.

The flight data recorder showed the aircraft encountered speed fluctuations between 225 and 254 KIAS during the turbulence encounter and altitude deviations from 40700 to 41300 feet. The autopilot disconnected for about 12 seconds. The aircraft encountered vertical accelerations between -0.53G and +1.63G. The aircraft was flying in air masses moving at 120 knots from 265 degrees, during the turbulence encounter the wind speed dropped by about 70 knots while maintaining the wind direction.

After landing the airline determined the design limits had not been exceeded in flight, performed the routine maintenance tasks and inspections in accordance with the aircraft maintenance manuals and returned the aircraft to service.

The JIAAC analysed that with jetstreams at 110 knots or more turbulence has sufficient energy to produce severe turbulence up into the tropopause, ahead and below the core of the jetstream as well as at the low pressure side of the core. Windshear associated with the jetstreams are more intense above and downwind of maintain ranges, the mountains causing strong vertical currents of varying magnitude according to the intensity of the winds. Turbulence in clear air should be anticipated whenever a flight passes a strong jetstream in the vicinity of mountaineous terrain.

The JIAAC analysed that according to witnesses the crew illuminated the fasten seat belt signs and made the according announcements, however, no verification was done to ensure the passengers had fastened their seat belts. As result, a number of passengers had ther seat belts not securely fastened.

The damage in the cabin shows the violence with which passengers, cabin crew and objects were thrown against the aircraft ceiling. As result of the event cabin crew was significantly reduced with 6 of 8 flight attendants having been injured. In principle, the incapacitated cabin crew members reduced the ability of the cabin crew to provide assistance, both in emergency and normal procedures. The JIAAC analysed that the airport services should have been informed about the injured cabin crew to be able to properly prepare for their response to the arrival with incapacitated cabin crew.
Aircraft Registration Data
Registration mark
N279AV
Country of Registration
United States
Date of Registration
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TCDS Ident. No.
Manufacturer
AIRBUS
Aircraft Model / Type
A330-243
Number of Seats
ICAO Aircraft Type
A332
Year of Manufacture
Serial Number
Aircraft Address / Mode S Code (HEX)
Engine Count
Engine Manufacturer
Engine Model
Mcqf cnAe emh Subscribe to unlock
Engine Type
Pounds of Thrust
Main Owner
flckfenme mifpljh Al pjmehnlgdglbmhflb lnemfehcfmlqpAhkh iinnkbfAkcAhpdA pfmlnpmbihjnnnqekjchhqnidnmqlbpchle Subscribe to unlock
Incident Facts

Date of incident
Jun 4, 2016

Classification
Accident

Airline
Avianca

Flight number
AV-965

Departure
Lima, Perú

Aircraft Registration
N279AV

Aircraft Type
Airbus A330-200

ICAO Type Designator
A332

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