The news from the Spanish media :
Going from the El Mundo website and on online translation tool it would appear the aircraft (Whatever it is) is on fire and there could be at least two fatalities and up to twenty casualties.
My wings are like a shield of steel.
Google Maps of Madrid Airport
AirSpace - more than just hot air
Spanish authorities now confirming at least 8 fatalities. Fuselage has broken into two main sections; Spanish media reporting the aircraft as an MD-82, although conflicting reports state it is an A321.
Vidi, Vici, Veni. I saw, I conquered, I came.
Confirmed as an MD-80.
There are just so many conflicting reports on this, especially the casualties! The Spanish Government have just been quoted as saying 45 people confirmed dead!
Here is David Learmount giving some analysis of what the investigation may entail:
One is staggered at the concept of how the aircraft could have lost directional and lateral control in such relatively benign conditions and from such a very long runway; regardless of the density altitude and the fluky, but light tailwind component. As a retired accident investigator, I know one should not pre-empt the formal releases from the appropriate investigation authority. However, considering the actuality of the known sequence of events, my mind keeps imagining a possible uncontained failure of compressor or turbine blades which then damaged/disrupted/severed some elements of the rear flight controls??? For had there been a major failure of an engine prior to V1, with such a long runway the decision to abort the take-off would have posed low risk...one surmises. I am guessing that there must be video footage of at least part of the take-off. I thought that I had actually seen a few seconds of such a recording but have not been able to sight it since. Did any of you see it?
Some more on this from a reliable source who has contacted us, there maybe something in this:
"This picture is of the right hand engine with the reverser deployed. -Pilots point out that because it is activated hydraulicly it is unlikely to have deployed through impact, though the whole deployment system may have been destroyed on impact.-Pilots point out that they regularly train for take-off with one engine or with one reverser activated, which is supposed to be technicaly feasible."
It may take some time for the truth of this to all come out!
It might have been the result of two problems:
1-Aircraft misconfigured for take off
2-Failure of take off configuration warning, as it seems that the the aircraft could have been "in flight mode"
New video footage of the actual impact. Makes for some chilling viewing.
God bless the poor buggers that were on-board.....
As a retired accident investigator, I am sometimes near to tears when I imagine the terrible last moments of passengers on so many avoidable crashes. What a bizarre world we live in when motorcar builders have no problems installing a camera and small screen in order that drivers can view what is behind them before moving. Yet an airline aircraft such as the MD-82 does not have a similar system with a fin-mounted camera so that the pilots can simply glance at a small screen to verify that the aircraft is configured for take-off. Why in God's name don't the regulators just say "DO IT!" I recall, when instructing, my students omitting to set take-off flap. Usually, I just let them experience the situation when they rotated...how different the aircraft felt and how they would have to take some action as the stall-warning horn bleeped; like lower the nose for goodness sake and fly the aeroplane! Regardless of a missed checklist item, and a failed warning system, and a flap position indicator reading Zero Flap, and a density altitude of approx. 4,000 feet, I feel, given such a long runway (6,000 metres is it?) that had the pilot flying reverted to basic Airmanship and rammed the power levers full forward, lowered the nose a few degrees to reduce drag and exercised some cool patience, the aircraft would have continued to accelerate readily to about 1.4 times (only my estimate) the scheduled Vr and flown away quite safely, albeit at a somewhat non-standard deck-angle. I am assuming now that both engines were operating normally. Isn't it a terrible irony that there may well have been a pilot passenger sitting back there who noted the lack of flap but was unable to do anything about raising a concern. It might also have been that one of the cabin crew also noted the anomaly but elected not to grab the phone and urgently query it. And, one wonders, whether the pilots were aware of the unserviceable alerting system? Had they been, then it may have been prudent to double check the few vital items that are essential for a VFR take-off. Like is fuel-flow assured, is the stabiliser trim set, are the flight controls free and fully moving...just the basics for flight really. I presume the MD-82 has a stick-shaker? Was it serviceable? It will be interesting to eventually read of the condition of this aircraft's systems as compared with the Minimum Equipment List's (MEL) requirements.........And, even if the crew elected to accept the aircraft outside some MEL item (and I know it is going on with some carriers) why not despatch the F/O back to take a look at the flap setting; or am I being hopelessy old-fashioned and engaging in historic "back-to-basics" dreaming? But before you scoff too much at an old pilot's musings, note this well. The "basics" of sound airmanship and first principle are still in everday use in many parts of the world such a Papua New Guinea. So you younger pilots; never forget you are, by LAW, in COMMAND and, when all is turning into the proverbial, the first rule is still "FLY THE AEROPLANE"......maybe as you have never flown before. Like so many facets of our technical life, it only matters when it really matters...if you get my drift. I love modern simulators and only wish we had had them when I began airline ops. We used to lose aircraft and crews on training flights. Chief pilots; try to organise more hand-flying time for your crews. But that is another whole subject so I shall shut my mouth now, except to say that I know pilots do their very best when things go bad, and I feel sure that the Spanair chaps did their utmost also.
i agree in the analisys, what i like strongly suggest at the industry is to spend some dollars to install external cameras so the pilots can see what going on outside in case like this and in many other circumstances.
Airlines now are forced to have stupid cameras around the cockpit door that never again will be useful against the terrorists, the MEL are so stringent on that now. Somebody realistic imagine the terrorist reply sepember eleven? and whi?
is more serious put the camera outside the plane for airworthiness reasons.