Today is Friday the 24th of June, 2016

Another very quiet day for ARFF news stories…

We close out this week with the following two pieces.

Have a great weekend and as always, “Be safe out there”!


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FAA Proposes Two Civil Penalties Against Amazon

Total For Both Fines Is $130,000

The FAA has proposed two civil penalties totaling $130,000 against Amazon for alleged violations of hazardous materials regulations. FAA-logo-0510a1

In one case, the FAA alleges that on May 24, 2014, Amazon offered Federal Express (FedEx) two cardboard boxes containing corrosive rust stain preventer for air transportation from Plainfield, IL. to Davenport, FL.

One of the packages contained four 1-gallon plastic jugs of Rid O’ Rust Stain Preventer Acid Well Water Formula, while the other held two 1-gallon jugs of the formula. Workers at FedEx’s sorting facility in Lake Wales, FL discovered one of the containers leaked through the cardboard box.

The FAA alleges the package was not properly marked, labeled, packaged or accompanied by shipping papers indicating the amount, type and hazardous nature of the material inside. The FAA also alleges Amazon did not provide required emergency response information with the shipment. That penalty would total $78,000.

In the other case, the FAA alleges that on June 2, 2014, Amazon offered UPS a non-specification cardboard box containing a flammable gas for air transportation from Whitestown, IN to Glendale, CA. The package held a 19-ounce container of Simple Air EZ Green HVAC Cleaner.

Workers in UPS’s Louisville, KY sort facility discovered the container.

The FAA alleges the package was not properly marked, labeled or accompanied by shipping papers indicating the amount, type and hazardous nature of the material inside. The FAA also alleges Amazon did not provide required emergency response information with the shipment. The proposed fine for that violation is $52,000.

Amazon has 30 days from the receipt of the notices to respond to the FAA.


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Today in History

41 Years ago today: On 24 June 1975 an Eastern Air Lines Boeing 727-225 encountered wind shear and struck approach lights during approach to New York-JFK; killing 115 out of 124 occupants.

Date: Tuesday 24 June 1975
Time: 16:05
Type: Boeing 727-225
Operator: Eastern Air Lines
Registration: N8845E
C/n / msn: 20443/837
First flight: 1970-10-23 (4 years 8 months)
Total airframe hrs: 12206
Engines: Pratt & Whitney JT8D-7A
Crew: Fatalities: 6 / Occupants: 8
Passengers: Fatalities: 107 / Occupants: 116
Total: Fatalities: 113 / Occupants: 124
Airplane damage: Destroyed
Airplane fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location: New York-John F. Kennedy International Airport, NY (JFK) (   United States of America)
Crash site elevation: 4 m (13 feet) amsl
Phase: Approach (APR)
Nature: Domestic Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport: New Orleans International Airport, LA (MSY/KMSY), United States of America
Destination airport: New York-John F. Kennedy International Airport, NY (JFK/KJFK), United States of America
Flightnumber: EA66


Eastern Air Lines Flight 66, a Boeing 727-225 operated as a scheduled passenger flight from New Orleans to New York-JFK. The flight departed New Orleans about 13:19. It proceeded on an IFR flight plan. Eastern 66 arrived in the New York City terminal area without reported difficulty, and, beginning at 15:35:11, Kennedy approach control provided radar vectors to sequence the flight with other traffic and to position it for an ILS approach to runway 22L at the Kennedy airport. The automatic terminal information service (ATIS) reported: “Kennedy weather, VFR, sky partially obscured, estimated ceiling 4,000 broken, 5 miles with haze… wind 210° at 10, altimeter 30.15, Expect vectors to an ILS runway 22L, landing runway 22L, departures are off 22R… ”
At 15:52:43, the controller transmitted, “All aircraft this frequency, we just went IFR with 2 miles very light rain showers and haze. The runway visual range is—not available, and Eastern 66 descend and maintain four thousand, Kennedy radar one three two four.” Eastern 66 acknowledged the transmission. At 15:53:22, the flight contacted the Kennedy final vector controller, who continued to provide radar vectors around thunderstorms in the area, to sequence the flight with other traffic, and to position the flight on the localizer course. The flightcrew then discussed the problems associated with carrying minimum fuel loads when confronted with delays in terminal areas. One of the crewmembers stated that he was going to check the weather at the alternate airport, which was LaGuardia Airport (LGA). Less than a minute later, one of the crewmembers remarked, “… one more hour and we’d come down whether we wanted to or not.” At 15:59:19, the final vector controller transmitted a message to all aircraft on his frequency that “a severe wind shift” had been reported on the final approach and that he would report more information shortly. boeingcrash19a-2-web
Eastern Air Lines Flight 902, a Lockheed L-1011 TriStar, had abandoned its approach to runway 22L earlier. At 15:59:40, Eastern 902 re-established radio communications with the Kennedy final vector controller, and the flightcrew reported, “… we had… a pretty good shear pulling us to the right and… down and visibility was nil, nil out over the marker… correction… at 200 feet it was… nothing.” The final vector controller responded, “Okay, the shear you say pulled you right and down?” Eastern 902 replied, “Yeah, we were on course and down to about 250 feet. The airspeed dropped to about 10 knots below the bug and our rate of descent was up to 1,500 feet a minute, so we put takeoff power on and we went around at a hundred feet.”
While Eastern 902 was making this report, the captain of Eastern 66, said, “You know this is asinine.” An unidentified crewmember responded, “I wonder if they’re covering for themselves.”
The final vector controller asked Eastern 66 if they had heard Eastern 902’s report. Eastern 66 replied, “…affirmative.” The controller then established the flight’s position as being 5 miles from the outer marker (OM) and cleared the flight for an ILS approach to runway 22L. Eastern 66 acknowledged the clearance at 16:00:54, “Okay, we’ll let you know about the conditions.” One minute later, the first officer, who was flying the aircraft, called for completion of the final checklist. While the final checklist items were being completed, the captain stated that the radar was, “Up and off… standby.” At 16:02:20, the captain said, “…I have the radar on standby in case I need it, I can get it off later.”
At 16:02:42, the final vector controller asked Eastern 902, “..would you classify that as severe wind shift, correction, shear?” The flight responded, “Affirmative.”
The first officer of Eastern 66 then said, “Gonna keep a pretty healthy margin on this one. An unidentified crewmember said, “I…would suggest that you do” the first officer responded, “In case he’s right.”
At 16:02:58, Eastern 66 reported over the OM, and the final vector controller cleared the flight to contact the Kennedy tower. The first officer requested 30° of flaps and the aircraft continued to bracket the glideslope with the airspeed oscillating between 140 and 145 knots. At 1603:12, the flight established communications with Kennedy tower local controller and reported that they were, “outer marker, inbound.” The Kennedy tower local controller cleared Eastern 66 to land. The captain acknowledged the clearance and asked, “Got any reports on braking action…?” The local controller did not respond until the query was repeated. The local controller replied, “No,none, approach end of runway is wet… but I’d say about the first half is wet–we’ve had no adverse reports.”
At 1603:57.7, the flight engineer called, “1000 feet” and at 1604:25, the sound of rain was recorded. The flight was nearly centered on the glideslope when the flight engineer called, “500 feet.”
The airspeed was oscillating between 140 and 148 knots and the sound of heavy rain could be heard as the aircraft descended below 500 feet. The windshield wipers were switched to high speed.
At 16:04:40, the captain said, “Stay on the gauges.” The first officer responded, “Oh, yes. I’m right with it.” The flight engineer reported, “Three greens, 30 degrees, final checklist,” and the captain responded, “Right.”
At 16:04:52, the captain said, “I have approach lights,” and the first officer said, “Okay.” The captain then again said, “Stay on the gauges,” and the first officer replied, “I’m with it.” N8845E then was passing through 400 feet, and its rate of descent increased from an average of about 675 fpm to 1,500 fpm. The aircraft rapidly began to deviate below the glideslope, and 4 seconds later, the airspeed decreased from 138 kts to 123 kts in 2.5 seconds.
The Boeing 727 continued to deviate further below the glideslope, and at 16:05:06.2, when the aircraft was at 150 feet, the captain said, “runway in sight.” Less than a second later, the first officer said, “I got it.” The captain replied, “got it?” and a second later, at 16:05:10, an unintelligible exclamation was recorded, and the first officer commanded, “Takeoff thrust.”
The airplane contacted the top of the No. 7 approach light tower at an elevation of 27 feet above the mean low-water level and 2,400 feet from the threshold of runway 22L. The aircraft continued and struck towers 8 and 9. The aircraft’s left wing was damaged severely by impact with these towers–the outboard section was severed. The aircraft then rolled into a steep left bank, well in excess of 90°. It contacted the ground and the fuselage struck five other towers. The aircraft then continued to Rockaway Boulevard, where it came to rest. The approach light towers and large boulders along the latter portion of the path caused the fuselage to collapse and disintegrate. A fire had erupted after the left wing failed.

PROBABLE CAUSE: “The aircraft’s encounter with adverse winds associated with a very strong thunderstorm located astride the ILS localizer course, which resulted in high descent rate into the non-frangible approach light towers. The flight crew’s delayed recognition and correction of the high descent rate were probably associated with their reliance upon visual cues rather than on flight instrument reference. However, the adverse winds might have been too severe for a successful approach and landing even had they relied upon and responded rapidly to the indications of the flight instruments. Contributing to the accident was the continued use of runway 22L when it should have become evident to both air traffic control personnel and the flight crew that a severe weather hazard existed along the approach path.”

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Thursday the 23rd of June, 2016

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Plane crashes into building at Sky Ranch Airport

KNOXVILLE (WATE) – A plane crashed into a building at an airport in East Tennessee Thursday morning. knoxville

The Knoxville Fire Department says the plane crashed into a building at Sky Ranch Airport in Knoxville. Dispatchers received the call for the crash around 8:40 a.m.

KFD Chief Capt. D.J. Corcoran says the plane was on the ground at the time. The pilot ran into one of the hangars. Crews pulled the pilot out of the plane. The pilot was unsure on why he crashed. He only remembered landing the plane safely. He was transported to UT Medical Center.

The pilot was steering a Grumman Yankee single-engine plane.

The airport is on 30 acres near Alcoa Highway. On the land is a clubhouse, two maintenance hangars and a gas pump. It is home to the East Tennessee Pilot’s Club.

The crash is under investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) and the Knoxville Police Department.

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Plane Makes Soft-Belly Landing at Long Beach Airport

The plane apparently lost electrical power and the pilot was not able to get the landing gear to lock, authorities said.

LONG BEACH, CA – A small plane made a soft-belly landing at Long Beach Airport on Wednesday after losing electrical power mid-air and being unable to lower landing gear, authorities said. long beach

Long Beach fire crews responded around 2:12 p.m. to a report of an emergency plane landing at Long Beach Airport, said Jake Heflin, public information officer with the Long Beach Fire Department.

“Apparently the pilot lost all electrical power and was unable to communicate with the (air traffic control) tower, and he was also unable to get the landing gear to lock and secure in place,” Heflin said.

The 31-year-old pilot of the twin-engine plane had tried to engage the manual release lever but was not successful, authorities said.

“As the plane landed, obviously it collapsed on its belly and basically skidded down the runway,” Heflin said.

The pilot was not injured, and had stepped out of the plane by the time fire officials arrived, he said.

No one else was in the plane, he added.

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Two Walk Away From Small Plane Crash in Polk County

HUMANSVILLE, Mo. — The Missouri Highway Patrol confirms a small plane has crashed in Polk County, Missouri and the pilot was able to walk to a nearby house for help. images

The crash was reported about 11:30 a.m. near the Polk-Cedar County line, near the Double J Arena southwest of Humansville.

The two women, ages 60 and 65, were able to walk away from the crash unharmed.

They’re from New Mexico and were traveling from Arkadelphia, Ark. to Warrensburg, Mo.

The pilot tried to make it to a nearby airport but was unsuccessful and put the plane down in a field, on its top.

Trooper Josh White, from the Missouri State Highway Patrol said, “We had several reports of an aircraft circling in the area, it was stalling, engine cutting out, then disappearing behind a tree line.” 

The FAA is investigating.

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Today in History

31 Years ago today: On 23 June 1985 an Air-India Boeing 747-237B crashed in the Atlantic Ocean; killing all 329 occupants.

Date: Sunday 23 June 1985
Time: 07:15 UTC
Type: Boeing 747-237B
Operator: Air-India
Registration: VT-EFO
C/n / msn: 21473/330
First flight: 1978-06-19 (7 years )
Total airframe hrs: 23634
Cycles: 7525
Engines: Pratt & Whitney JT9D-7J
Crew: Fatalities: 22 / Occupants: 22
Passengers: Fatalities: 307 / Occupants: 307
Total: Fatalities: 329 / Occupants: 329
Airplane damage: Destroyed
Airplane fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location: 176 km (110 mls) W off Cork, Ireland (   Atlantic Ocean)
Phase: En route (ENR)
Nature: International Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport: Montreal-Mirabel International Airport, QC (YMX/CYMX), Canada
Destination airport: London-Heathrow Airport (LHR/EGLL), United Kingdom
Flightnumber: AI182

Air-India Flight 181/182 was operated by Boeing 747 “Emperor Kanishka”. It arrived at Toronto, Canada after a flight from Bombay, Delhi and Frankfurt.
In Toronto a 5th spare engine was fitted below the left wing. The engine had to be ferried for repairs in India. All passengers had disembarked for custom and immigration checks. Some passengers re-boarded the flight to continue to Montreal. A total of 270 passengers boarded the flight. In addition a fresh crew of 22 came aboard. The aircraft took off from Toronto runway 24L at 00:16 UTC. The flight to Montreal was uneventful and the airplane arrived at 01:10 UTC.
Sixty-five passengers destined to Montreal along with three Air-India personnel deplaned at Montreal. The remaining 202 passengers remained on board the aircraft as transit passengers and were not allowed to disembark.
The flight number changed to AI 182 because the flight was heading back to Bombay with en route stops in London and Delhi. A total of 105 passengers boarded the flight through gate 80.
The aircraft took off from Montreal at 02:18 UTC. Its estimated time of arrival at London was 08:33 UTC.
At 07:15 UTC, at FL310 over the Atlantic Ocean an explosion occurred in the forward cargo compartment, causing a rapid decompression. The aft portion of the aircraft separated from the forward portion before striking the water. The wreckage sank to a depth of 6700 feet.
From the wreckage retrieved no direct evidence was found of an explosive device. However, there is a considerable amount of circumstantial and other evidence that an explosive device caused the occurrence.
Furthermore because an explosive device detonated in Tokyo the same day. Just 55 minutes before Air-India 182 crashed, A bag from CP Air Flight 003 exploded at Tokyo-Narita Airport, just 55 minutes before Air India 182 crashed. This was probably an interlined unaccompanied suitcase to be placed on Air-India Flight 301 to Bangkok.
Investigation determined that a suitcase was also interlined unaccompanied from Vancouver via CP Air Flight 060 to Toronto. In Toronto, there is nothing to suggest that the suitcase was not transferred to Terminal 2 and placed on board Air India Flight 181/182 in accordance with normal practice. The aircraft departed Toronto for Montreal-Mirabel and London with the suitcase unaccompanied.

The Canadian Aviation Safety Board respectfully submits as follows:
Cause-Related Findings:
1. At 0714 GMT, 23 June 1985, and without warning, Air India Flight 182 was subjected to a sudden event at an altitude of 31,000 feet resulting in its crash into the sea and the death of all on board.
2. The forward and aft cargo compartments ruptured before water impact.
3. The section aft of the wings of the aircraft separated from the forward portion before water impact.
4. There is no evidence to indicate that structural failure of the aircraft was the lead event in this occurrence.
5. There is considerable circumstantial and other evidence to indicate that the initial event was an explosion occurring in the forward cargo compartment. This evidence is not conclusive. However, the evidence does not support any other conclusion.

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Wednesday the 22nd of June, 2016

An unusually quiet day in the ARFF news department!

Thought I’d throw in the story of the transformer fire in Arlington, Virginia yesterday that needed the use of an ARFF rig from KDCA….

Be safe out there!


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Transformer fire breaks out at Arlington shopping center

Heavy black smoke poured through Clarendon Boulevard on Tuesday morning. Neighbors captured the shocking moments on cell phone video.

“We actually watched the fire for 10 or 15 minutes just keep building and getting bigger,” said Brian Schmergel, who lives in a nearby building.

“All you could see was black clouds in front of you,” said Jason Davila, who lives in the area.

Fire crews say a transformer vault in the street caught fire a little before 9:00 a.m.

“At that point, the crash unit from the national airport was requested for their dry chemical and foam capabilities,” said Captain Gregg Karl, with the Arlington County Fire Department.

View image on Twitter

“There was just smoke. I’m sure you could’ve seen it from miles away,” said Chris Marantette.

Marantette says he was trapped in an elevator for a half an hour.

“I was just going to work, taking the elevator down to the garage, and all of a sudden it went black,” he recalled.

It wasn’t until after he and two others were rescued, that they heard about the flames.


Video of what units are dealing with on scene of the transformer fire.

“That’s when it got a little more scary,” Marantette said. “It took it up a notch. We could start to smell the smoke and we knew something wasn’t right.”

“The flames got up to be about 30 feet,” said Arlington resident, Mary Sykes. “It was pretty frightening.”

Crews could not confirm how many transformers are in the vault. No injuries were reported. Fire crews cleared the scene around noon.

Foam being put on the fire now.

An airport crash truck treated the fire using Purple K.

Airport’s crash truck putting purple K on the fire.

According to the Dominion of Virginia Power Outage Map, 216 customers in the area are now without power. Roughly 697 customers were without power earlier because of the incident.

View image on TwitterView image on Twitter
: A couple pics from the 2800 BLK of Clarendon Blvd. Avoid the area. Station Fills in progress. 🚒
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