Aviation News, Headlines & Alerts
Category: <span>visibility</span>

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Air Niugini Flight Lands in Sea Lagoon

Air Niugini flight PX-73 touched down into a sea lagoon off Chuuk International Airport, Micronesia, on September 28th.

The Boeing 737-800 plane flying from Pohnpei, Micronesia, was cleared to land at the airport but touched down short of the runway amid heavy rain and low visibility.

All passengers and crew members were able to safely evacuate the plane.

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ANA Flight Makes Emergency Landing in China

All Nippon Airways flight NH-924 had to return and make an emergency landing in Guangzhou, China, on November 2nd.

The Boeing 767-300 plane took off for Tokyo, Japan, but had to turn back after mist appeared in the cockpit and the cabin.

The plane landed safely. There were one hundred and sixty-three passengers and ten crew members aboard at the time; all of them remained unharmed.

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Emirates Plane Makes Emergency Landing in Dubai

EmiratesEmirates flight EK-22 made an emergency landing in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, on June 25th.

The Boeing 777-300 plane, flying from Manchester, England, declared emergency after the crew reported that pilot vision was impaired.

The plane landed uneventfully. Everyone aboard remained safe.

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China Eastern Plane makes Safe Landing in Wenzhou after Visual Difficulties

china easternChina Eastern flight MU-5577 made a safe emergency landing at Wenzhou Longwan International Airport, Wenzhou, Zhejiang, China, on March 20th.

The Airbus A320-200, flying from Shanghai to Wenzhou, China, was about to land when the crew faced some visual difficulties disabling them to see the runway.

The plane received substantial damage to its landing gear and flaps after impacting treetops outside the airport perimeter.

All people onboard remained unharmed.

The incident remains under investigation.

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Seven EgyptAir Planes Divert and Make Emergency Landing in Egypt

EgyptAirEgyptAir flights 631, 650, 664, 834, 921, 959, 969 had to divert and make emergency landing at Sharm El-Sheikh and El-Ghardaga Airports, Sinai Peninsula, Egypt, on April 3rd.

According to sources, the planes en-route to China, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Eritrea and India were mid-air when they were told to divert due to low visibility in the air.

All seven planes landed safely. The passengers onboard remained unharmed.

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JetBlue Plane Makes Emergency Landing due to Laser Blinding

JetBlueA JetBlue flight had to make an emergency landing at Las Americas Airport, Dominican Republic, on January 9.

Authorities said the pilots declared emergency after one or more individuals pointed a laser beam on the plane, impairing pilot’s visibility. The flight was coming from New York at the time.

The plane landed uneventfully. There were 120 people aboard at the time; all of them remained unharmed.

The police are investigating.

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Qantas Flight Diverts to Jakarta due to Low Visibility

QantasQantas QF51 made an emergency landing at Soekarno-Hatta Airport in Jakarta, Indonesia, on September 29.

The plane, heading from Brisbane, Australia, to Singapore, was diverted after the pilot reported low visibility due to haze. General manager of Jakarta’s Air Traffic Service Centre, Bambang Rianto, said the pilot reported that visibility was below the safety threshold limit of 1400 meters.

The plane landed safely.

No one was hurt.

Business Jet Crashes

Sunday a Cessna Citation business jet carrying two pilots and two passengers from Shoreham airport in England to an airfield at Foehren struck a post in foggy conditions, and crashed, in flames when firefighters arrived. The two pilots and two passengers—all German— died at the scene. The wing stuck in (struck?) a pylon to the north-east of the 1200 meter runway. The Rivenich landfill is near the airport.

The airfield is not equipped for instrument landings. Landings are not recommended with visibility less than 1,800 metros, but visibility was less than 100 meters.

A passerby witnessed the incident and called it in. Trier Emergency services responded.

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Shree Airlines Diversion

After encountering low visibility in Kushma Bazaar, a Shree Airlines helicopter en route from Dolpa to Pokhara made an emergency landing at around 10:00 am when it diverted to the Chandika Armed Police Battalion in Kushma Bazaar.

Shree Airlines wants to emphasize that a diversion during rainy season is not an emergency.

General Manager of the Airlines Anil Manandha said that “…such landing during rainy season is normal. This is not an emergency landing.”

The chopper had intended to refuel in Pokhara.

The helicopter landed in Kathmandu at 1:00 p.m.

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New Mexico Cessna Crash

On Feb 27, 2013, a privately owned Cessna 150 was near Deming New Mexico when it crashed.

Before ATC lost contact with him, the last message they received from pilot Carl Link was a distress call saying he was losing his vision.

Someone in the area heard the plane fly but did not hear it crash.

The plane impacted near State Road 26 and ended up wheels up a quarter mile from the dirt road.

The pilot died at the scene.

Beijing Smog Affects Air Traffic

According to reports, pollution and smog grounded traffic in parts of China on January 23, 2013.

Government warnings were issued for residents to stay indoors in Beijing.

PM2.5 one of the worst pollutants was measured at 526 micrograms per cubic metre, or “beyond index”, and more than 20 times higher than World Health Organisation safety levels over a 24-hour period, and visibility levels were measured at less than 100m in some areas of eastern China.

Flights cancelled:

Zhengzhou = 100 flights
Beijing = 33 flights
Qindao = 20 flights
Jinan = 13 flights

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Piper Lands in Canadian Blizzard

On Jan 29, 2013, at 9:15 a.m., an Image Air Charter Ltd Piper PA-46-500TP Malibu Meridian was en route from La Crete, Alta to Three Hills (Canada) with three people aboard when it attempted to land in bad weather at Three Hills Airport.

The plane descended into a blizzard, and at one end of the runway struck an ice berm that knocked off the left wing. One wing and the landing gear were damaged. Conditions were so bad that no one at the hanger knew there was an accident until emergency crews arrived. Three Hills RCMP, Fire and EMS responded. An environmental services company cleaned up the fuel leak.

One passenger who was suffering chest pains was taken to the hospital.

The 2008 Piper PA-46-500TP Turbo Prop is registered to Image Air Charter Ltd.

The NTSB is investigating.

Go to Flight Aware

SCAT Bombardier Crashes 5 Miles from Airport, 21 Fatalities

On Jan 29, 2013, A SCAT-owned Canadian-built Bombardier Challenger CRJ-200 # UP-CJ006 en route from Kokshetau Kazakhstan to Almaty crashed in Kyzyl Tu village five miles from the Almaty airport.

The weather conditions consisted of low cloud cover and fog.

There was neither fire nor explosion, but the plane shattered when it hit the ground which was covered in heavy snow.

None of the 16 passengers (including a child) or 5 crew survived.

SCAT is a domestic airline that was established in 1997 that has a fleet of six 50 set jets

Bad weather and poor visibility is believed to be the cause of the crash at 1.p.m.

UAAA 290730Z 02001MPS 0150 R23R/0150N R23L/0200N FZFG VV001 M01/M01 Q1018 882/0150 NOSIG RMK QBB040
UAAA 290700Z 05001MPS 0150 R23R/0150N R23L/0200N FZFG VV001 M01/M01 Q1019 882/0150 NOSIG RMK QBB040

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London Investigates Agusta Westland Helicopter Crash

London’s Air Accidents Investigation Branch is working the first helicopter accident in London since 1976. A review of helicopter flight regulation over the UK capital is already underway.

In low broken clouds with visibility of 2,300 feet, the AgustaWestland struck a crane on January 16 on top of the Tower at St George Wharf and fell to the street around 8 a.m.. The pilot had diverted to Battersea heliport due to bad weather.

Warning lights were on the building but not on the crane. (Crane lights had an allowed shut off around daylight.

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Tower at St George Wharf Helicopter Crash

London Helicopter Crash Continued

The Wednesday January 16, 2013 crash of the helicopter that struck a crane on top of London’s St George Wharf Tower did result in two casualties. Two office buildings, 5 cars & 2 motorbikes were damaged. The AgustaWest AW109E #G-CRST was flown by Rotormotion, and leased from Castle Air.

Weather people are saying that the top of the crane was not in fog but in a low cloud. (This is apparently different from fog, and might be something I should ask my pilots about. And this London. London=Fog, no?)

Four people were injured and taken to St. Thomas’ Hospital. Five injured were taken to Kings College Hospital. Seven people were treated at the scene. One of the injured was rescued from a burning car. The helicopter fell to Wandsworth Road, hit some vehicles, burst into flames; and falling burning debris started flames in some buildings. Although there were people in the area who thought the accident was a bomb and didn’t realize the helicopter had struck the crane, some witnesses saw the helicopter clip the crane and in seconds, spin out of control. Part of the crane also fell.

I think it’s nothing short of a miracle that there were only two killed and nine injured. London has 8.2 million people.

The pilot, Peter Barnes, was en route from Redhill to Elstree, but had diverted to Battersea because of the visibility. Barnes had over 12,000 flying hours, was employed by charter firm Rotormotion and had flown in the movies Die Another Day, Tomb Raider II and Saving Private Ryan.

Night officially ended thirty minutes before the crash, at which time lights on tall structures were allowed to be turned off. The lights are not visible during fog and bad weather.

The accident resulted in some subway/tube/station closures.

The wreckage will be taken to the Air Accidents Investigation Branch at Farnborough, Hampshire, and a report will take several months. The AAIB site announces The AAIB has sent a team to investigate a helicopter accident in Vauxhall, London – 16 January 2013.


German Helicopter Crash Kills Pilot on the Autobahn

On Jan 10, 2013, a Robinson R44 Astro en route from Augsburg to Bretzfeld got caught up in a 380 kilovolts high voltage power transmission line and crashed on the Autobahn 6 in Southwestern Germany.

The helicopter was flying below radar.

Pieces of the helicopter hit a truck, but the driver was not seriously hurt. The accident occurred during rush hour between the junction Schwäbisch Hall and just before the Kochertalbrücke.

The pilot, 42 year old Sven Berger was killed in the crash and will have to be identified thru his dna. The remains of the helicopter are melted, burned, broken and bent, and smell like burned plastic. First responders could not get through the flames to the helicopter.

Berger was a firefighter, member of the Commerce and Industry association and owned the Schwab Bacher Kithcen Studios. The tentative cause for the accident is poor visibility. There were spots of freezing temperatures, rain and fog in Brachbach.

Pocono Helicopter Crash Investigation Underway

What: ACS Helicopter LLC Bell 407 helicopter
Where: Mount Pocono
When: Oct 11, 2012
Who: Two fatalities, one injury
Why: The Tuesday wreck piloted by a full time American Airlines pilot (part time with ACS Helicopter LLC) was discovered at 2:30 a.m. wednesday. The helicopter encountered bad weather as it passed through northern Monroe County. Pocono Mountains Municipal Airport is not equipped for receiving distress calls.

The helicopter was found on its right side, leaking fluids, with broken rotor and tail.

Fatalities of the crash were Pilot William Ellsworth, 52, of Califon, N.J., and passenger Tighe Sullivan, 51, of Darien, Conn.

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AK Float Plane Crash Survivors Flown To Seattle Med

What: Southeast Aviation DeHavilland Beaver
Where: Ketchikan AK
When: March 13, 2012
Who: Two injured
Why: Alaska State Troopers have identified the two men, 64-year-old Ketchikan pilot Ernest Robb and 56-year-old Vancouver passenger Murray Richardson, injured in the float plane crash in the Niblack Mine area 30 miles SW of Ketchikan near Prince of Wales Island

Responders included Alaska State Troopers, Ketchikan Volunteer Rescue Squad, Temsco Helicopters, and Guardian Flight Services after a Good Samaritan vessel spotted the wreckage off the beach. Guardian flight services first flew the injured men to Ketchikan Peace Health Medical Center then to Seattle’s Harbor View Medical Center. Initial investigation revealed that weather conditions were zero visibility with heavy snow, factoring into the accident.

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UltraLight Takes a Spin on the Ferris Wheel

What: Superlight Cheetah S200 glider
Where: Canberra New South Wales
When: October 1
Who: 2 aboard.
Why: During the annual three-day festival in Old Bar, a glider crashed into a ferris wheel. (What are the odds of that?) A nine year old and a thirteen year old were trapped, as well as the pilot (Paul Cox) and passenger of the downed plane. The pilot was disoriented in low visibility. The children were stuck for an hour; the pilot and passenger for three hours. No one had serious injuries.

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Update: Aerocon Found in Bolivian Amazon Jungle, One Survivor

One of the SA-227’s in the Aerocon fleet.
CP-2548 is missing. (CP-2527 is pictured )

Click to view full size photo at Airliners.net
Contact photographer Robert Domandl

Minor Vidal, the sole survivor was found in the Amazon jungle. Minor said “I did not eat anything, nothing, just drank my urine when I was thirsty. The first night I slept on the plane and two nights in the jungle. I did not understand why the plane was flying so low. Then there was a heavy blow. I do not remember more. When I awoke, I saw the airplane game, could not move. I stayed in my seat, I was in the back of the plane. The next day [Wednesday], I went and did my blood with an arrow on a shirt to get me. They were all dead. I walked day and night to be found by the patrol.”

Colombian Oscar Valencia, the William Lara Ecuador and Bolivian indigenous leader Eddy Martinez died in the crash.
What: Aerocon Swearingen SA-227 Metroliner en route from Santa Cruz to Trinidad Bolivia
Where: Trinidad
When: Sep 6th 2011
Who: 7 passengers, 2 crew
Why: On final approach to Trinidad, the pilots lost contact with ATC.
The instrument approach to the airport requires overflying North and then turning back. (See the airport chart below.)

The last contact was reporting the flight was “in the procedure turn” but the flight did not land on the runway, and went missing in a mountainous area.

Rescuers reached the crash site in the afternoon of Sept 8 and confirmed that there were survivors.

The wreckage of the plane was located 30km north-east of the city of Trinidad, in the Amazon jungle province of Beni. Chacon reported on thursday that a helicopter crew had seen the plane “completely destroyed” in a difficult-to-reach jungle region.

Six bodies were recoverable immediately when the wreckage was found. Two bodies trapped in the wreckage required rescue teams and equipment.

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5 Die in Mountainous Crash in Andorra, 1 Burned Crewman Struggles For Survival

What: Inaer/Helland Helicopter en route to Juclar
Where: Estany de Juclá – Canillo, Andorra
When: June 15, 2011
Who: 6 aboard, 5 fatalities, 1 serious injury
Why: At 10:30 am, a flight transporting equipment and supplies to Juclar crashed in a mountainous area near the Andorran town of Canillo. Four bodies were immediately being recovered; one was missing, having been ejected from the chopper. One individual survived with serious burns on 70% of his body, and was evacuated to Barcelona by chopper to the Hospital Vall d’Hebrón de Barcelona..

The helicopter is reported to be of French origin and registered in Spain. Forensic and technical experts are on scene; and the investigation will include Spanish officials, and representatives of the French helicopter buildern.

A field hospital has been set up to care for the victims’ families whose names were not released but were all reported to be “members of the crew.”

Inaer, the company which owns the helicopter, stated the accident is due to bad weather and low visibility due to foggy conditions.

Although the original report lists one as missing, the body of the missing person was found.

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North Dakota: TaylorCraft Makes Emergency Highway Landing

What: Private Taylor Craft
Where: Windsor Exit westbound off ramp i-94 west of Jamestown
When: 10:30 am
Who: pilot Patrick Williams of Salem, Oregon
Why: The pilot experienced low visibility and made an emergency landing on the interstate in the westbound lane. The pilot safely moved the plane to the off ramp. (Update pending.)

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