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# 747 Cargo Plane crash

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K^2
• ##### K^2

Vidi Vici Veni

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### #61 Posted 02 May 2013 - 02:37 AM

 QUOTE (SmC12 @ Wednesday, May 1 2013, 13:31) Yanking on the yoke may seem like the worst course of action, but at such a low altitude and a presumably fully loaded aircraft it would probably still have sent it plummeting to the ground, he probably thought applying thrust would maintain altitude. Letting the nose drop only works when you have the vertical space to do so, but this didn't look much higher than ~1,000ft.

It is physically impossible to recover from stall with a nose-up attitude. Your aircraft is not generating enough lift to maintain altitude. That means it will start going down. That means the relative wind is going to start pointing up, and your angle of attack is going to increase. It doesn't matter what you do with throttle*. With nose-up attitude the only way you are going is down. This is why they teach you to pitch down no matter what. You cannot make it worse by pitching down. You cannot make it better by fighting it. You have to pitch down. It might not be enough, but doing anything else is dumb in any circumstance.

* The only exception are aircraft with enough thrust to fly vertically up, which is a handful of fighter jets and stunt planes.

 QUOTE If the first odd maneuver was caused by the cargo shifting, wouldn't the cargo then shift again [this time forwards] if you let the plane's nose drop to avert the stall? So no matter what he was screwed?

Unlikely. First of all, cargo shifting aft is a lot more dangerous than forward. Second, the fact that nose started coming down tells you that it never shifted center of mass further aft than center of pressure - that's when you're really screwed. So I doubt that forward shift would have put the center of mass out of the envelope.

Like I said, it's entirely possible that the whole thing was sealed the moment the cargo shifted. But while pitching down at least gives you a chance to recover, what the pilot did guaranteed crash. Even from 2,000 feet, it would be no different. People keep saying that he started to recover near the ground. He did not. He put the plane near horizontal, sure, but the plane was still moving down, meaning even if he had another 1,000 feet to go, the plane would have been stalled and keep on falling.

There was precisely one right thing to do, it's what they drill into your head all through the flight school, and the pilot instead did the worst thing you possibly could.

On a side note, I would argue that there was enough altitude to recover the very moment the airplane started pitching down, because he still had good air speed, and even a 747, the brick that it is, can do a 4:1 glide unpowered. With full throttle and 1,000+ feet to descend, starting with roughly the stall speed, you ought to be able to level off before slamming into the ground.

 QUOTE Don't pilots tend to takeoff at steeper angles when flying out of Afghanistan, and come in to land at sharper angles too? In order to minimise the time when they are vulnerable to RPG and anti-aircraft fire. Pretty sure I read that somewhere.

Indeed, they do. That has many interesting challenges, not least of which are higher take off and landing speeds.

Edited by K^2, 02 May 2013 - 02:43 AM.

•¿F¡ññ4L¡ƒ£?•
• ##### •¿F¡ññ4L¡ƒ£?•

Well I'm sorry, Princess.

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### #62 Posted 02 May 2013 - 04:45 AM

Edit: Nevermind, My brain was so far from proper function this morning that whatever I posted was likely gibberish

Edited by finn4life, 02 May 2013 - 09:51 AM.

fgcarva1
• ##### fgcarva1

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### #63 Posted 02 May 2013 - 04:54 AM

As K^2 said, it doesn't matter the angle of the nose since the plane was still stalling and falling. As much as tilting the nose down would help to recover from the stall, the vertical drop would cause a deadly crash regardless of the nose angle at the time.

If that's what you meant.

The Pizza Delivery Guy
• ##### The Pizza Delivery Guy

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### #64 Posted 02 May 2013 - 04:57 AM

What a spectacular explosion! That's beyond anything I've seen in a while. That plane went down in such a strange way. Was it an engine failure?

Urban Legend
• ##### Urban Legend

No, f*ck no.

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### #65 Posted 02 May 2013 - 05:35 AM

QUOTE (K^2 @ Wednesday, May 1 2013, 19:37)
 QUOTE (SmC12 @ Wednesday, May 1 2013, 13:31) Yanking on the yoke may seem like the worst course of action, but at such a low altitude and a presumably fully loaded aircraft it would probably still have sent it plummeting to the ground, he probably thought applying thrust would maintain altitude. Letting the nose drop only works when you have the vertical space to do so, but this didn't look much higher than ~1,000ft.

It is physically impossible to recover from stall with a nose-up attitude. Your aircraft is not generating enough lift to maintain altitude. That means it will start going down. That means the relative wind is going to start pointing up, and your angle of attack is going to increase. It doesn't matter what you do with throttle*. With nose-up attitude the only way you are going is down. This is why they teach you to pitch down no matter what. You cannot make it worse by pitching down. You cannot make it better by fighting it. You have to pitch down. It might not be enough, but doing anything else is dumb in any circumstance.

* The only exception are aircraft with enough thrust to fly vertically up, which is a handful of fighter jets and stunt planes.

 QUOTE If the first odd maneuver was caused by the cargo shifting, wouldn't the cargo then shift again [this time forwards] if you let the plane's nose drop to avert the stall? So no matter what he was screwed?

Unlikely. First of all, cargo shifting aft is a lot more dangerous than forward. Second, the fact that nose started coming down tells you that it never shifted center of mass further aft than center of pressure - that's when you're really screwed. So I doubt that forward shift would have put the center of mass out of the envelope.

Like I said, it's entirely possible that the whole thing was sealed the moment the cargo shifted. But while pitching down at least gives you a chance to recover, what the pilot did guaranteed crash. Even from 2,000 feet, it would be no different. People keep saying that he started to recover near the ground. He did not. He put the plane near horizontal, sure, but the plane was still moving down, meaning even if he had another 1,000 feet to go, the plane would have been stalled and keep on falling.

There was precisely one right thing to do, it's what they drill into your head all through the flight school, and the pilot instead did the worst thing you possibly could.

On a side note, I would argue that there was enough altitude to recover the very moment the airplane started pitching down, because he still had good air speed, and even a 747, the brick that it is, can do a 4:1 glide unpowered. With full throttle and 1,000+ feet to descend, starting with roughly the stall speed, you ought to be able to level off before slamming into the ground.

 QUOTE Don't pilots tend to takeoff at steeper angles when flying out of Afghanistan, and come in to land at sharper angles too? In order to minimise the time when they are vulnerable to RPG and anti-aircraft fire. Pretty sure I read that somewhere.

Indeed, they do. That has many interesting challenges, not least of which are higher take off and landing speeds.

Here, let me revise that for you.

BLAH. BLAH. BLAH.

That was some off the wall sh*t you said earlier about the pilot deserving this fate. He mighta been a piece of sh*t.

I hope a f*ckin 6 yr old hits you in the eye with a paper plane! f*ckin up all hopes for YOU to fly...you f*ckin smart ass.

Whatever

sivispacem
• ##### sivispacem

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### #66 Posted 02 May 2013 - 06:34 AM

 QUOTE (Urban Legend @ Thursday, May 2 2013, 06:35) Here, let me revise that for you.BLAH. BLAH. BLAH.

Sorry, what the f*ck?

 QUOTE (Urban Legend @ Thursday, May 2 2013, 06:35) That was some off the wall sh*t you said earlier about the pilot deserving this fate. He mighta been a piece of sh*t.

That's clearly not what he said.

Well done for making yourself look like a catastrophic numpty.

BAF-stueycow
• ##### BAF-stueycow

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### #67 Posted 02 May 2013 - 07:55 PM

QUOTE (K^2 @ Wednesday, May 1 2013, 16:42)
The pilot was an idiot and deserved what he got. When your plane begins to stall on the takeoff, yanking on the yoke should have been the first thing he learned not to do.

Condolences to the families of the other six crew members.

 QUOTE I'm no expert in aviation, but the general consensus seems to be a possible shift in cargo weight causing the plane to climb a lot steeper than it should.

That might have been the reason it was climbing too steep, and you can see the plane slow down between 6 and 8 seconds on the video. So on seconds 8-9 the nose begins to drop. And if the pilot actually did what he was supposed to, which is let the nose drop and go balls to the wall, he'd probably recover. But you can see from 9-10 seconds the pilot is fighting it and attempts to maintain the climb angle, which is when the plane actually properly stalls, sealing fate of all on board.

you do have a point rip

Mockage
• ##### Mockage

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### #68 Posted 02 May 2013 - 09:18 PM

Yeah I saw this on the day the video got released. As someone earlier said, it seems that the plane tilted in an awkward manner due to a shift of the planes cargo. Makes you wonder how much cargo's on the plane, huh?

Rest in peace to those who died in this disastrous, unbelievable crash though.

nlitement
• ##### nlitement

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### #69 Posted 03 May 2013 - 10:23 AM

QUOTE (Stinky12 @ Wednesday, May 1 2013, 19:05)
QUOTE (DarrinPA @ Wednesday, May 1 2013, 18:15)
 QUOTE (K^2 @ Wednesday, May 1 2013, 11:42) . So on seconds 8-9 the nose begins to drop. And if the pilot actually did what he was supposed to, which is let the nose drop and go balls to the wall, he'd probably recover. But you can see from 9-10 seconds the pilot is fighting it and attempts to maintain the climb angle, which is when the plane actually properly stalls, sealing fate of all on board.

If the first odd maneuver was caused by the cargo shifting, wouldn't the cargo then shift again [this time forwards] if you let the plane's nose drop to avert the stall? So no matter what he was screwed?

@Kirsty - I've debated watching it, and was just about to. Thanks for changing my mind. The only way I'd fly, is if I was the pilot.

The plane is so close to the ground, there is barely enough time for the pilot to recover even if he put the nose down, to recover
from a stall. It says the cargo has shifted during take off which means, the cargo has move to the rear, making it rear heavy.
This is why it's important that things be check, recheck, and triple check, to make sure everything is secure. Not only that, the weight
of each cargo has to be balanced out. You don't want a bunch of heavy cargo only on one side of the plane.

Not sure if it's true, but passengers plane applies too. Pilot and crew must know the total amount of passengers and luggage it
has onboard and then calculate the total combine weight. This will help them determine the amount of fuel they need to reach their
destination. Also the luggage inside are balanced out too.
On Jan 8 2003 Air MidWest Flight 5481 crash shortly after take off because of this. All on board died, including one on the ground who was injured.
There was 2 crew on that flight, Captain Katie Leslie aged 25 and 1st Officer Jonathan Gibbs aged 27, and 19 passengers.

That's kind of spooky now, to come to think of it. On my last flight, there was excess weight in the tail section, and they had to move passengers and their hand luggage to the front to balance the plane. Is this a common occurrence?

Coat.
• ##### Coat.

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### #70 Posted 03 May 2013 - 10:30 AM

A few nights ago I dreamt that an Apollo craft blew up, (none related to Challenger), and watching that video brings that same feel back... when you see it loose control and explode. Leaving the life of the humans on board to perish within a blink of an eye - gone, never to be seen again.

K^2
• ##### K^2

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### #71 Posted 03 May 2013 - 10:48 AM

 QUOTE (nlitement @ Friday, May 3 2013, 06:23) On my last flight, there was excess weight in the tail section, and they had to move passengers and their hand luggage to the front to balance the plane. Is this a common occurrence?

They always check weight and balance. A flight cannot leave until they do estimates on center of mass and find it within acceptable envelope. That said, moving passengers is not common. Usually, what they actually move is the luggage bellow the deck. If that is not enough for some reason, however, they can move passengers around to try and fix this.

Keep in mind that safety standards are very different for commercial aviation and the military. Passenger flights leave a huge safety margin. So the fact that you had to move doesn't mean you were anywhere close to actually having a problem in flight.

John The Grudge
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### #72 Posted 03 May 2013 - 12:56 PM

It's quite a scary video. It does seem like the cargo shifted and for a moment too long the pilot perhaps tried to maintain his ascent. It's terrifying how that fuel goes up.

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