Brooke D Watts


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Aug 2, 2005
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Hello,

I used to be a member, but let the membership lapse.

I am really an aviation historian/author, but maritime history has always been of interest. I have been taught by some of the best like Inger, Michael, Andrew, Lynne, Jo, Hattie and MAB on titanic-titanic.

I hope I can add something to this board.

Cheers from Fort Worth, Texas
Brooke
 

Inger Sheil

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Feb 9, 1999
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Brooke, I don't 'hope' you can add something to the board - I know you will!

Great to see you back here.

Members may care to have a glance at Brooke's profile - I'm sure many here will have much in common with him. He's an aviation historian, and in particular is recognised as one of the foremost (if not the foremost) of experts on the Braniff line. He has an article on the subject in this month's Air International.

(Sorry to dob you in, Brooke, but I know you're too modest to mention any of this yourself!).
 

Jason D. Tiller

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quote:

Should be interesting to see what the investigation uncovers

It certainly will be, Mike. Witnesses reported seeing lighting strike the plane, but that could not been the only contributing factor as airplanes are built to withstand lighting and obviously the tires are made of rubber, so it may also have been the wind. At the time, it was coming from the north-northwest which created a strong cross wind for the plane.

Coincidentally, it came to rest at the same site where a DC-9 crashed twenty-seven years ago. This is the first plane crash at our airport, since then. It is a miracle that no one was killed.​
 
Jul 9, 2000
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The weather is the favoured culprit for now, though I'm putting it squarly in the catagory of Theory Du Jour for the moment. Investigations tend to cough up unexpected surprises from the forensics angle that tosses what everybody thought they knew into the dustbin. The Official Homepage for the GTAA had this to say this morning:
quote:

At 16:03 est. on August 2nd, Air France Airbus A340 overran Runway 24L by some 200 metres. Prior to the overrun, the airport was under a ground stop program due to extreme weather conditions which resulted in the postponement of departing aircraft.
I don't suppose somebody has a website out there with all the detailed information on the airport that a pilot would need. Things like a map of that facility, instrument approach plates and the like. AirNav seems to cover U.S. facilities only. It might help me better understand the playing field here.​
 

Jason D. Tiller

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If anyone is interested in listening to the transmission between the pilot and the traffic control tower, minutes before the plane crashed, click on this link:

LiveAtc

A program called 'BitTorrent' is required to download the files; there's a link to it on the site. You can also listen to live feeds on there as well. Although, I'm sure you are already aware of this site, Brooke!
 
Jul 9, 2000
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>>I hope this helps.<<

It does a little. Perhaps Samuel Halpern can offer a few insights on what he sees there. I'm wondering if windshear might not have been a factor here. it takes a lot to break up a plane even with a hard landing. From what the passengers described...at least in the news stories...I had the impression that the approach was a rough one.
 

Jason D. Tiller

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quote:

I had the impression that the approach was a rough one.

You're right about that. Several passengers felt that the pilot came in too fast. When the plane landed, it first bounced lightly and then heavily on the water logged runway.

The plane was less than six years old and the last maintenance check was done on July 5. It will take months, possibly years to find out the real cause of the crash.​
 
Jul 9, 2000
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>>Several passengers felt that the pilot came in too fast.<<

The information in the Flight Data Recorder (The so-called Black Box) whill settle that one. Every aircraft I've ever heard of has a checklist that specifies landing and takeoff speeds among other things. If the pilot was powering into a landing *above* the specified engine settings, he'd have to have a very good reason for it. Like being caught in windshear.
 

Jason D. Tiller

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quote:

The information in the Flight Data Recorder (The so-called Black Box) whill settle that one.

Yes, it definitely will and the cockpit voice recorder will have some clues as well. Those black boxes are very valuable items, when it comes to determining the actual cause of a plane crash.​
 
Jul 9, 2000
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I saw a layout and description of the airport in a local newspaper today. Runway 24 Left is the one on the lower end of the photo Jason posted a link to which runs parallel to the really large highway next to it. The grass field at the end on the left hand edge of the photo is where the plane came to rest.
 
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