Dubai UPS Crash Update

Wednesday, September 8, 2010
By George Hatcher

The UAE General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) has issued its preliminary report on the Boeing 747 – 400 cargo airplane had departed from Dubai International Airport at 14:53 UTC (6:53pm local time) headed to Koln-Bonn (Cologne) – Germany.

Here are some of the big questions on the crash which the investigation will focus on regarding the crash that caused the death of Capt. Doug Lampe of Louisville, Kentucky, and First Officer Matthew Bell of Florida.

Which “general” cargo was located just forward of the starboard wing, where the fire started? Were there batteries there among the electronic goods?

Some additional issues: Pilots reported smoke in the cockpit 20 minutes after leaving Dubai. They had difficulty getting the correct frequency to ATC. After the fire broke out, the smoke was too thick for the pilots to read the instruments. What can be done to give the pilots options for extinguishing a cargo fire? What changes can be made to instruments to make them visible under these conditions?

The cockpit recorder was recovered in”reasonable” condition just hours after the Boeing 747-400 went down and will be sent to the US for analysis.

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