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False cockpit indications

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False cockpit indications

Old 05-02-2022, 03:08 AM
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Swissair 111 is a frustrating example. For some reason, a large amount of pilots do not understand why we dump fuel. I don't have any comment whether safe landing would have been possible, but anyone dumping fuel when you are on fire should spend some time understanding why we have the option to jettison fuel.

The only reason plane has to be able to dump fuel is engine out go-around performance. Halifax is a short-ish runway, but seeing how some dump fuel on short final to LAX tells me those pilots had no clue why you dump fuel.
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Old 05-02-2022, 05:47 AM
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SR111 was a watershed event. I don't consider the crew especially at fault since we have 20/20 hindsight and general industry practice has transformed dramatically due to this event and a couple others, including some where they made it to the ground but didn't evac in time.

1. Point the nose at a runway and start down.
1b. Tough call... risk (or accept) an over-run on a short runway or delay to reach a longer one. Situational. Smoke in the cockpit or cascading electrical failures suggest the former.
2. On the ground, with any plausible fire indications, evacuate immediately.

The UPS crew in Dubai reinforced this, IIRC they *could* have made it if they hadn't tried to RTF.

If the source of the fire is known to be a pax item that's accessible in the cabin, ie a PED and not part of the aircraft, and is under control then maybe you can be flexible. In that case I'd still get on the ground due pax smoke inhalation liability but would do so in a safe and methodical manner, on an adequate runway. That's probably the most likely scenario you'll face.
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Old 05-06-2022, 10:23 AM
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Originally Posted by shortspatula View Post
I was having a debate with a friend of mine about false indications and I was wondering what people thought. It's very rare obvoiusly but there's been a couple of instances at our company to have false Engine Fire indications since sometimes the fire detection loops malfunction. It's a memory item to turn the engine off if you have the indication. One time the crew just turned it off right away to find out on the ground it was a false indication. Another crew actually investigated it because they didn't notice anything wrong other than the indiction, no smoke behind them as they turned, smooth running engine etc. What would you do? It's an obvious memory item, but based on your knowledge that they have failed before and if you don't notice anything abnormal should you just blindly turn off a perfectly good engine?
I remember being taught to turn and look for smoke. The problem is there are some pretty horrendous fires that don't make much smoke at all, so this sets you up to think you're not burning when you are. Still, this dumb thing was taught to me. So the OP is probably a brand new and trying to sort wheat from chaff when it comes to advice and instruction.

Last edited by Elevation; 05-06-2022 at 10:44 AM.
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Old 05-06-2022, 07:35 PM
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Originally Posted by rickair7777 View Post
Modern transport category aircraft have redundancy in fire detection (especially engine fire detection)... both to ensure that a fire is detected if present, but also to vastly minimize the odds of a false alarm (especially engines).

If you get an engine fire alarm, follow the published procedure. OEI is not an actual emergency in transport aircraft, it's an abnormal, although you will declare an emergency with ATC to get priority handling.

If the second engine were to fail later, you could always restart the one you had shut down.
Good post. I agree. Minor point, Iím not sure your restarting an engine if you blew the bottles.
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Old 05-06-2022, 08:51 PM
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Blown bottles won't prevent a re-start. If you have two and the second fails, and you don't have a fire indication, you may end up reconsidering on the former engine, There are reasons to shut down that don't necessarily preclude a later restart. There are procedures which specify one or both bottles as part of the shut down, and certainly if you'd had an issue that caused loss of both bottles, and you had shut down a perfectly good engine, you would restart if you needed that engine.

If you arrive at such a point in space and time, things have gone far enough sideways that you're beyond published procedures, and beyond concern over the re-start, such as both engines shut down. It may be time to rethink starting the engine.
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Old 05-07-2022, 07:38 AM
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Yes, everything I've flown you can simply put the engine fire switch or handle back to it's normal position and restore all fuel, hyd, bleed, etc to the engine, thus allowing a restart. Obviously only going to work if the engine isn't damaged or just plain broke.

If you shut a motor down for things like excessive (but not ridiculous) vibes, or hot/low oil good chance you could restart it.

Having blown the bottle shouldn't affect a restart. I don't think bottles blow into the core flow path anyway and if it did it would be flushed out in a split second during flight.
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Old 05-17-2022, 01:16 PM
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The bottles donít fire into the coreóthereís supposed to be a fire in there!
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