Etihad Airbus Crashes Into Wall During Testing


Etihad A340 in incident at Toulouse, France

An Airbus A340-600 (the longest aircraft in civil service today) has suffered a very unusual accident on 15NOV2007 at 5 pm at the Airbus Technical Center in Toulouse, France. As the aircraft (MSN 856) was undergoing the final tests before being delivered to Etihad Airways in the coming days, it had to pass an engine test (“engine run-ups”) on the ground. While carrying out these engine tests, due to some yet unknown reason it somehow broke loose and crashed into an anti-noise barrier. According to some pre-liminary reports, the engines were on full throttle as part of the – otherwise routine test – with all breaks applied when the plane got out of control. As seen on the first pictures above the plane looks badly damaged, having the nose being slammed into the wall and the back touching the tarmac.

Etihad A340 in incident at Toulouse, France (C by AP)

The plane was “seriously damaged” according to Airbus, too, who also said that on top of the 9 people onboard (including 7 Etihad employees) 1 on the ground was also injured. Two of the passengers and this another person on the ground were seriously injured, police said. In all 10 people were injured and four people were taken to hospital, three of whom were in serious conditions, they said. According to the first Airbus press release however, “only” 5 people are hurt, of whome 3 are seriously injured.

Eighty firefighters rushed to the scene after the plane slammed nose-first into the barrier and the tail hit the tarmac. “For an unknown reason the aircraft began to roll and it climbed up the embankment in front of it,” said Airbus France spokesman Jacques Rocca. The company said, however, that only five people had been injured. The four-engined aircraft can carry between 380 and 472 passengers depending on the model and the cabin layout.

Airbus expresses its sympathy to the families and friends of the persons concerned.” and so do we here at Airlineworld.

By coincidence this is the second incident involving an A340-600 on the ground within a week, following Iberia’s aircraft overrunning the runway in Quito in rainy conditions.

Update: the first high resolution picture on Airliners.net: Etihad A340 in incident at Toulouse, France (C by Airliners.net)

by balint01

Update 2:

French authorities have launched an investigation into a crash involving an Airbus plane due to be delivered to the United Arab Emirates carrier.

Etihad Airways said none of its staff were involved when the A340-600 crashed into a barrier at Toulouse airport, injuring five people on board.

A spokesman for the airline said those hurt belonged to a firm contracted to test the plane before delivery.

None of them suffered severe injuries. The cause of the crash remains unclear.

The aircraft was scheduled to be delivered next week to Etihad Airways’ Abu Dhabi base, the airline said.

Source: BBC News

Update 3:

Airbus and French authorities launched an investigation Friday into an accident involving an A340-600 carrying out engine runup tests at the manufacturer’s Saint-Martin site near Toulouse ahead of the aircraft’s scheduled delivery to Etihad Airways. The jet, carrying nine people, apparently crashed through a barrier. Photographs show the badly damaged A340, bearing Etihad livery, nearly split in two, with the destroyed cockpit and nose area of the fuselage mostly severed.

Airbus called the incident “regrettable” and said five people were injured, with three remaining hospitalized as of Friday. One is an employee of Abu Dhabi Aircraft Technologies while the other two work for Airbus, the manufacturer said. It said the aircraft was to be delivered “in the coming days,” adding, “Ground tests including engine runups are a normal procedure on all Airbus aircraft.” The plane was one of two -600s headed to EY before year end. It already operates two of the type.

Source: ATW online

Our blog is moving to a new place. Please drop us an email to intairline@gmail.com, if you would like to receive updates about our blog!

About these ads

147 Responses to “Etihad Airbus Crashes Into Wall During Testing”


  1. 1 Watkinson-Yull November 17, 2007 at 8:45 am

    This aircraft sounds as if it has a” breaking” problem !

    • 2 Ken December 28, 2009 at 3:27 pm

      The aircraft does NOT have a braking problem. Read some of the comments (larger ones) and they will explain that it’s simply a case of ignorance. Not one run-up manual was read before those boobs from Abu Dhabi Aircraft Technologies ‘tried’ to perform the tests they had supposedly been trained for.

      Because they didn’t read the manuals and follow proper procedures, a 200 million dollar aircraft is now junk. I think they ****** ***** ** ********* ******.

      • 3 King Kong April 5, 2010 at 1:08 am

        I donot think you can rest the blame on Etihad or the delivery contractors. The blame can only rest with Airbus. They (Airbus) should ensure the delivery contractors and pilots are fully trained and are familiar with all aspects of the aircraft before allowing non-airbus employees, contractors, pilots from taking control of any of there aircraft, after all, the aircraft has’nt even been handed over yet.
        I dont think its fair to say the arabs are incompetent. If someone disabled an alarm in the aircraft because an alarm was screaming and was not aware of what that may do (i.e. releasing the brakes) then that person was not trained properly by airbus.
        And surely you would think airbus would have a technician onboard that would no this or would have been there to atleast over see or give advise.
        At the end of the day when all is said and done, Airbus neeb too re-think there testing proceedures and monitoring of contractors and pilots to ensure they are completely formiliar of all aspects of the machine they are testing.

  2. 4 szafi November 17, 2007 at 10:21 am

    Might be. It looks terrible indeed.

  3. 5 balint01 November 17, 2007 at 4:56 pm

    It just lost the full nose… Most probably the pilots are the ones hospitalized. I just can not imagine how big of a power it had when climbing up on that wall and destroying the nose, the cockpit and the front belly structure. Amazing!

  4. 6 Made in the USA November 22, 2007 at 8:16 pm

    You have to ask: Why do these types of failures keep happening at the Airbus factories, but never at Boeing?

    • 7 Thomas Moeller May 22, 2009 at 2:56 am

      Pull your head out.

    • 8 ZipIt October 12, 2009 at 11:03 pm

      Made in the USA?
      Please! This is just bigotry. Boeing has had their share of issues also.
      USA has good planes but so does France. A-380, The Concorde, etc.
      These type of comments usually come from people who know little to begin with. You probably saw it on TV and started cheering to yourself “usa-usa-usa), LOL.
      We all know your type.

      • 9 Girish October 27, 2009 at 9:20 am

        Then one of the ADAT crew decided to pull the circuit

        breaker on the Ground Proximity Sensor to silence the alarm.

        This fools the aircraft into thinking it is in the air.

        The computers automatically released all the Brakes

        and set the aircraft rocketing forward.

        The ADAT crew had no idea that this is a safety feature

        so that pilots can’t land with the brakes on.

        Not one member of the seven-man Arab crew was smart enough

        to throttle back the engines from their max power setting,

        so the $200 million brand-new Aircraft crashed into a blast

        barrier, totaling it.

        The extent of injuries to the crew is unknown due to the

        news blackout in the major media in France and elsewhere.

        Coverage of the story was deemed insulting to Muslim Arabs.

      • 10 daniele lugli December 7, 2009 at 5:55 pm

        remember the made in usa DC10?

      • 11 ari February 3, 2011 at 7:52 pm

        Sorry pal..Boeing is American but Airbus is not French !
        only 33% is French..Also Concorde was more British than French..

    • 12 Girish October 27, 2009 at 9:20 am

      Arab flight crew of Abu Dhabi Aircraft Technologies

      (ADAT) to conduct pre-delivery tests on the ground, such as

      engine run-ups prior to delivery to Etihad Airways in Abu Dhabi .

      The ADAT crew taxied the A340-600 to the run-up area.

      Then they took all Four engines to takeoff power with a

      virtually empty aircraft. Not having Read the run-up

      manuals, they had no clue just how light an empty

      A340-600 Really is.

      The takeoff warning horn was blaring away in the cockpit

      because they had All 4 engines at full power.

      The aircraft computers thought they were trying to take off,

      but it had not been configured properly (flaps/slats, etc..)

      Then one of the ADAT crew decided to pull the circuit

      breaker on the Ground Proximity Sensor to silence the alarm.

      This fools the aircraft into thinking it is in the air.

      The computers automatically released all the Brakes

      and set the aircraft rocketing forward.

      The ADAT crew had no idea that this is a safety feature

      so that pilots can’t land with the brakes on.

      Not one member of the seven-man Arab crew was smart enough

      to throttle back the engines from their max power setting,

      so the $200 million brand-new Aircraft crashed into a blast

      barrier, totaling it.

      The extent of injuries to the crew is unknown due to the

      news blackout in the major media in France and elsewhere.

      Coverage of the story was deemed insulting to Muslim Arabs.

      Finally, the photos are starting to leak out.

      • 13 roger allen burkhardt April 10, 2012 at 10:59 pm

        You folks should know what is going on. If the Saudi test engineers are not sharp enough to read through the run-up & operational manuals before engaging and disengaging cock-pit controls prior to firing up the engines preparing to move the aircraft then who else can be accountable for the accident. Surely, not Airbus. Sorry, folks. Come on get a life. Roger from former Mc-Donnell Douglas Aircraft Corp. Long Beach Calif.

    • 14 Herman De Wulf May 21, 2010 at 8:58 pm

      At Boeing they take off for a test flight in a restored vintage Boeing 307 with insufficient fuel for the flight. Then they alight in the bay and have to be fished out. All this is achieved by professional test pilots.

    • 15 Johny December 4, 2010 at 5:39 pm

      This is not The Etihad problem but the AIRBUS, and they are fully responsible of the their ignorant act. They have to be sure those contractors are well trained and experienced. Comparing AIRBUS to BOEING, the BOEING is MADE IN USA and have the law applied to its max and the AIRBUS may be not.

  5. 16 balint01 November 22, 2007 at 9:31 pm

    Do they “keep happening”?? I don’t think it’s an everyday event at Airbus, but it’s true that nothing like this has happened at Boeing recently. In my opinion accidents can happen at anytime, anywhere. Let’s just hope that no such accident will ever happen at any airplane manufacturer/test site again!

  6. 17 szafi November 23, 2007 at 8:27 am

    Somtimes such accidents have to happen in order to prevent other accidents.

  7. 18 Win November 24, 2007 at 3:20 am

    It’s French. It just surrendered. You know the difference between an Airbus and a chainsaw? About 600 trees a minute (remember??). Do you know what you call an Airbus pilot? Lumberjack. You know how you tell a French soldier at the beach? Sunburned armpits.

    • 19 ZipIt October 12, 2009 at 11:07 pm

      Oh boy! Another smart one…

      • 20 daniele lugli December 7, 2009 at 6:12 pm

        accidents happen to any aircraft manufactor. is the nature of the businnes. man was not born with wings.we have a long run before will be close to perfection. unfortunatelly umans will keep payng the conseguences(life, blame, etc etc>)It would be nice if they reed the manual before operating such an aircraft do!

  8. 21 Don Whyte November 24, 2007 at 6:06 pm

    Well that’s what happens when “all breaks are applied” and the breaking system overwhelms the braking system.

    • 22 PhilBeeNZ April 24, 2013 at 12:36 am

      I’m assuming all the very learned knowledgable folk commenting here really mean BRAKES when they’re writing BREAKS…otherwise they’re no brighter than the idiots who totalled this plane!

  9. 23 mir November 24, 2007 at 9:18 pm

    After reading some of the comments, now I know that I am not the only one who thinks that accidents at Airbus factories are a result of less Boeing orders. Frankly speaking, Old Uncle Tom has always been known around for his cheap tricks.

    • 24 samyzud November 1, 2010 at 5:45 pm

      I thought Uncle Tom was known for his cabin, not his cheap tricks? Or did you mean to say Uncle Sam? Those two are more than subtle nuances, you know?

  10. 25 steve November 24, 2007 at 9:25 pm

    Airbus investigative guys, wake up and spread your wings, fly high and let the world know whats going on otherwise your eggs will be targeted by big bird

  11. 26 Dav November 24, 2007 at 9:30 pm

    They have planted a rat in there…haha..can u spot it

  12. 27 szafi November 25, 2007 at 8:30 am

    In our blog there us a moderation queue before comments become visible on the site. Regarding the last 3 I did not know what to do with them, but finally I allowed them to appear. But honestly I don’t really get the real intention behind these comments.

  13. 28 SARDAR November 25, 2007 at 10:14 pm

    Its a regretabe accident.can happen anytime anywhere weather it is boeing or airbus.But some of the comments given and tagetted airbus are also unbearable.I also involved myself with airbus aircraft delivary.procedures are strictly followed at airbus delivery centre.AIRBUS and AUTHORITY inquiry will conclude the incident.it is meaningless to give and produce their raw ideas.

  14. 29 Jack November 26, 2007 at 7:34 am

    “MIR”, I’ve forwarded your comments to a few people and none of us are quite certain of your meaning. Could you clarify please.
    Thanks, Jack

  15. 30 szafi November 26, 2007 at 11:04 am

    I added a new post with pictures of the aircraft in it:

    http://airlineworld.wordpress.com/2007/11/26/etihad-airbus-crash-pictures/

  16. 31 TUGMAN November 26, 2007 at 9:43 pm

    When airbus industries check the flightdeck voice recorder and hear “madame don’t pull that”….”merd”.

  17. 32 talal November 27, 2007 at 5:13 am

    Can anyone shed light on what eithad can claim for delays as well as reputaion damage as these crash pictures shows the livery with no fault of eithad
    Thanks

    • 33 Achmed May 13, 2009 at 12:51 pm

      Oh boys!
      Why would Airbus be reponsible for compensations when Arabs themselves crash the aircraft by simple stupidity!?

  18. 34 szafi November 27, 2007 at 11:36 am

    talal, I wrote an email to them and asked them to answer your question either here in the blog or by sending me an email. In the second case I’ll post the answer here.

  19. 35 achraf November 28, 2007 at 5:20 pm

    the big mistake is that Etihad name was connected to this crash .Etihad did not yet receive the plane so it s better we called Airbus (no more no less ).Airbus must assume and next time avoid sticking any name to its plane before the final tests . This crush did not hurt Airbus more than it did for Etiha company .Just have a look at all the title and you will deduce that every single paper is naming the crash etihad s and not airbus .Airbus must be grateful to Etihad as it supported most of the french airliner mistake.I would like to know what would be the position of the frensh if the contrary happened .

    • 36 ZipIt October 12, 2009 at 11:17 pm

      Was not the crew from Etihad doing the tests? It doesn’t matter if they were in France or the Emirates, those pilots were Etihad pilots.

      • 37 Aderbal Lima July 27, 2011 at 5:00 pm

        There was an Airbus official pilot seating on the right chair at the cockpit and he was underrighting and/or making himself the mistakes.

  20. 38 Jack November 30, 2007 at 4:59 am

    Achraf,
    I cannot believe a rational person would see Etihad even remotely at fault, or judge them in a negative light. Even people arriving/departing at Toulouse could see this was a manufactures tragedy. People are not that shallow (I hope). To the contrary I see the message that Etihad buys new state-of-the-art equipment. Don’t worry about frivolous possibilities.

  21. 39 achraf November 30, 2007 at 6:14 pm

    Jack whether you are an airbus lawyer or a proud french .No body can swallow your statement for one reason and unless you consider the people behind these pages non- professional .Thing i strongly reject .Why ?.if you go to the top of this page you will clearly see that even the professional people wrote (i quote ) ” Etihad airbus crashes….Why do every single newspaper called Etihad crash ? .Why Etihad first and airbus after …As for the contrary here is the satetment .The title would be “An arab pilot crashes an airbus palne ‘.
    the reason ?the breaks were perfect ..the weather was fine …it s a training problrem as he was not used to it .
    Dear jack don t be so pround to get blind .No passenger at any airport would recognise an airplane by its manufacturer .unless if it s only airbus engenners that fly .
    Don t be french / Airbus be realistic .There is a problem and airbaus has to assume the damage and break the silence.

  22. 40 Jack December 1, 2007 at 7:43 am

    Achraf,

    Your comments are understood fully. I think the press (usually the same the world over) chose to slap a label on the tragedy which was Etihad. The first label should have been “tragedy”, then that it happened at Airbus by Airbus, and third that it was before delivery to Etihad. That would be a perfect world. But I still think most people see it in this light. Those that make jokes at the expense of Airbus/Etihad are fools. By the way I’m American and a fan of Boeing, hardly French and certainly not Airbus. But those that take cheap shots at someone else’s expense are certain to be on the other end of the stick someday. Everyone will learn from this mistake, even Boeing.

    • 41 Bob May 25, 2011 at 8:23 pm

      If it was in the possession of Airbus, then they are primarily to blame. Someone let an untrained pilot and engineer into the cockpit, and that is where things went wrong. Who was that person who arranged that and never bothered to check to make sure whoever sat in those two seats knew what to do? And who authorized those engines to be spun up with no wheel chocks? Really??

      What this whole incident tells me is that training in procedure is very, very lax. Why do I say this? Because multiple people had to screw up for this to go down the way it did. When a couple people screw up, you have a personnel problem. When LOTS of people screw up, you have a management problem.

  23. 42 Prachod January 21, 2008 at 4:25 pm

    I recently got some snaps from one the communites and I really thought that Ethiad Aircraft crashed as I live in UAE – Ethiad being the national carrier of UAE – AbuDhabi ran out from the runway. And after that I just googled in for ” Ethihad Crashes out of runway” I came to this site.. Well the mistake what Airbus did is using a company name during its testing phase which is 100% wrong.

  24. 43 balint01 January 21, 2008 at 5:43 pm

    Prachod,
    The situation is the following: Airbus has a tested airplane (A340-600), which has been in operations at several airlines for years. Etihad has ordered this airplane, which was to be delivered to the airline, so it was already painted in Etihad colours, the whole interior has been set-up for Etihad, etc. But just like you take a look at a shirt before you actually buy it, Etihad together with Airbus carried out a few last tests, to see if they really get the airplane they asked for and if it operates flawlessly. Like if you would take your car out for a short ride before taking delivery and signing all papers just to see if it really operates.

    It was this testing phase when the accident happened.

    So even though on paper it was still an Airbus owned aircraft and it was misinterpreted in the news as an Etihad crash, it is not the mistake and not the case of Airbus just choosing and “using a company name during its testing phase” as you put it.
    I agree though that this was not really an Etihad crash and I would still love to fly with the flag carrier of the UAE one day!

    • 44 Ken December 28, 2009 at 3:34 pm

      It was tested by Abu Dhabi Aircraft Technology personnel… who, by the way, did NOT read any of the run-up manuals prior to their ‘test’.

  25. 45 achraf January 28, 2008 at 4:39 pm

    balint01

    It does not change anything from pasengers mind .When you buy a shirt most of time you buy it because it looks so but only few people stick to the manufacturer tag .In this case It would be professional if airbus stated in the situatuion and presented PUBLICALLY excuses to Ethihad and it spassengers .
    I still believe that it s EY mangement that showed their non professionalism .
    Again ,i need anyone to draw me the pictures if this happened to Lufthansa or british airways .

  26. 46 George March 13, 2008 at 3:59 am

    What IS true is the uniform airbus response when there is a problem with one of their aircraft:

    Its not our fault.

    Its someone else’s fault.

    Its not our fault.

    Remember the french concorde? It crashed because of FOD which fell off a preceding American plane.

    Note to French: the preceding American flight landed safely with all passengers and were actually able to use the aircraft again….

    • 47 ZipIt October 12, 2009 at 11:30 pm

      My plane lost an engine cowl on landing once. We not only landed the plane safely and uneventfully but we didn’t even know it had happened until my F.O. Did the after landing walk-around. So what is your point?

  27. 48 labradorheat April 5, 2008 at 3:00 am

    Apparently, nobody was killed so this is a very expensive lesson financially only. I like the Airbus series but my favourite jet for travel is the Boeing 767. Given Airbus’ test crashes, I will wait before I get on the A380.
    Airbus needs to stand up to the plate and accept any responsibility they are accountable for. It will come out one way or another.
    To say the Etihad crew was on board without Airbus personnel does not make sense. It is a multi million Euro aircraft.
    Err, what about simulators? Didn’t these people know anything about simulators which would reveal the purpose of the alarms? And, what about the manual? I know it is thick but did anyone read it? I do read my vehicle owners manual.
    Thank you for allowing me the space to “speak”.

  28. 49 chris in abq April 16, 2008 at 9:38 am

    No news about this. it’s $1500 to fly from NY to Bahrain, which I thought to be relatively cheap. However, it appears that they do not allow Americans to fly first class as you can not schedule it! http://www.etihadairways.com/etihadairways/us/en/home and try it yourselves (that or they don’t have 1st class on their planes).

  29. 50 Sarge April 21, 2008 at 9:29 pm

    No Airbus pilots or instructors have responded here. If any are reading this, can they confirm that the Airbus computer releases the brakes when flight power is applied and the aircraft is in flight mode (flaps zero, etc)? You can’t get to full power without setting the plane into flight mode. Didn’t Canadian Airlines also lose an Airbus this way a few years ago? Other reports said that the crew on board were delivery contractors, which means the aircraft was in ETIHAD’s possession.

    • 51 ZipIt October 12, 2009 at 11:38 pm

      I don’t know how true this is, but I heard that the crew elected to pull a circuit braker to silence the “parking-brake” alarm and that released the brakes.

  30. 52 szafi April 21, 2008 at 10:43 pm

    Well, so far more than 14 thousand people read this article, so I hope they will find it, too. :)

  31. 53 Pfm1011 April 29, 2008 at 10:58 am

    This is a complete repeat of when Canadian Airlines maintenance crushed a Canadian forces Airbus. Same deal, power run, tech pulled the same breaker, plane drove into hangar and hangar collapsed on the plane breaking its back….My question is ..do you punch out or just go home??

    The arrogence of Airbus is that they didnt look at the system where one faulty breaker or broken wire could result in a full brake system failure..Stupid Canadians..Well it cant happen again….OOPS I will be damned.

    The system designed to stop pilots from landing with brakes on..which never happens and if it ever does will simply blow tires.. Has resulted in the destruction of 2 airplanes, a hangar and not sure the death toll..But airbus is right as always

    These are the same people who destroyed an Arien 5 over Guyana because they loaded the wrong software..and responded with “well at least the safetys worked” and tried to look like heros

  32. 54 Ashram Mendelev May 28, 2008 at 6:02 am

    http://www.tothepointnews.com/content/view/3207/85/

    Suggest incompetence and lack of reading supplied documentation.

  33. 55 JeanGuy78 June 21, 2008 at 5:53 pm

    STOP!
    Ashr..Mend suggests perhaps an interessant story BUT the TALE (TALE!) and link with TothepointN… A racist storyboard and racistes or deplaced injuries and comments of same level. Sh..t.
    No place here in any case: please CENSORED May 28, 2008 at 6:02 am
    Thanks and regards.

  34. 56 Greatclip August 11, 2008 at 6:40 pm

    Until the French authorities release an official account of the incident, everyone here is speculating and in the airline industry that is inappropriate.

    • 57 ZipIt October 12, 2009 at 11:43 pm

      Thank you!

    • 58 Bob May 25, 2011 at 8:31 pm

      This isn’t the Airline Industry (is it??)

  35. 59 Bob J August 14, 2008 at 2:10 pm

    THE TALE OF THE ARAB FLIGHT CREW

    Written by To The Point News
    Friday, 16 May 2008

    The brand spanking new Airbus 340-600, the largest passenger airplane ever built, sat in its hangar in Toulouse, France without a single hour of airtime. Enter the Arab flight crew of Abu Dhabi Aircraft Technologies (ADAT) on November 15, 2007 to conduct pre-delivery tests on the ground, such as engine run-ups, prior to delivery to Etihad Airways in Abu Dhabi.

    The ADAT crew taxied the A340-600 to the run-up area. Then they took all four engines to takeoff power with a virtually empty aircraft. Not having read the run-up manuals, they had no clue just how light an empty A340-600 really is.

    The takeoff warning horn was blaring away in the cockpit because they had all 4 engines at full power. The aircraft computers thought they were trying to takeoff but it had not been configured properly (flaps/slats, etc.) Then one of the ADAT crew decided to pull the circuit breaker on the Ground Proximity Sensor to silence the alarm.

    This fools the aircraft into thinking it is in the air.

    The computers automatically released all the brakes and set the aircraft rocketing forward. The ADAT crew had no idea that this is a safety feature so that pilots can’t land with the brakes on.

    Not one member of the seven-man Arab crew was smart enough to throttle back the engines from their max power20setting, so the $200 million brand-new aircraft crashed into a blast barrier, totaling it.

    The extent of injuries to the crew is unknown, for there has been a news blackout in the major media in France and elsewhere. Coverage of the story was deemed insulting to Moslem Arabs. Finally, the photos are starting to leak out.

  36. 60 boB August 21, 2008 at 6:27 pm

    The ADAT crew taxied the A 340-600 to the run-up area. Then they took all four engines to takeoff power with a virtually empty aircraft. Not having read the run-up manuals, they had no clue just how light an empty A 340-600 really is.

    The takeoff warning horn was blaring away in the cockpit because they had all 4 engines at full power. The aircraft computers thought they were trying to take off but it had not been configured properly (flaps/slats, etc.)

    Then one of the ADAT crew decided to pull the circuit breaker on the Ground Proximity Sensor to silence the alarm. This fools the aircraft into thinking it is in the air. The computers automatically released all the brakes and set the aircraft rocketing forward. The ADAT crew had no idea that this is a safety feature so that pilots can’t land with the brakes on. Not one member of the seven-man Arab crew was smart enough to throttle back
    the engines from their max power setting, so the $200 million brand-new aircraft crashed into a blast barrier, totaling it.

  37. 61 Getta Clue August 21, 2008 at 8:06 pm

    Actually, the test went as planned.

    This is a normal landing for Arab Muslim crews.

    Their goal and moto are: “Any landing you can walk away from, is a coward’s landing.” Allah ahk bar!

    The last thing the crew was heard to say as they boarded was, “We don’t want to learn anything to do with landings”!

  38. 62 Dave August 28, 2008 at 5:46 pm

    What a sad sick bastard ‘Getta Clue’ is, why do you publish comments like this? It drags you down to his level, the gutter.

  39. 63 dietmar 68 August 28, 2008 at 10:58 pm

    THE TALE OF THE ADAT FLIGHT CREW

    Written by To The Point News

    The brand spanking new Airbus 340-600, the largest passenger airplane
    ever built, sat in its hangar in Toulouse, France without a single
    hour of airtime.

    Enter the flight crew of Abu Dhabi Aircraft Technologies (ADAT)
    to conduct pre-delivery tests on the ground, such as engine runups,
    prior to delivery to Etihad Airways in Abu Dhabi.

    The ADAT crew taxied the A340-600 to the run-up area. Then they took
    all four engines to takeoff power with a virtually empty aircraft.
    Not having read the run-up manuals, they had no clue just how light
    an empty A340-600 really is

    The takeoff warning horn was blaring away in the cockpit because they
    had all 4 engines at full power. The aircraft computers thought they
    were trying to takeoff but it had not been configured properly
    (flaps/slats , ec.) Then one of the ADAT crew decided to pull the
    circuit breaker on the Ground Proximity Sensor to silence the alarm.

    This fools the aircraft into thinking it is in the air.

    The computers automatically released all the brakes and set the
    aircraft rocketing forward. The ADAT crew had no idea that this is a
    safety feature so that pilots can’t land with the brakes on.

    Not one member of the seven-man crew was smart enough to
    throttle back the engines from their max power setting, so the $200
    million brand-new aircraft crashed into a blast barrier, totaling it.

    The extent of injuries to the crew is unknown, for there has been a
    news blackout in the major media in France and elsewhere. Coverage
    of the story was deemed insulting to Arabs. Finally, the photos are starting to leak out.

  40. 64 Cain Crew September 12, 2008 at 3:39 pm

    To made in USA… NONE Airbus aircraft was crashed with passengers on board, in the history of crashes. While the list of accidents for BOING is sooo lonnnng.

    The history says so.

  41. 65 scott November 9, 2008 at 6:11 pm

    try reading this just another case of a human being in this case several stuck on stupid

    http://www.snopes.com/photos/airplane/etihad.asp

  42. 66 frisky Fennec November 29, 2008 at 10:35 pm

    obviously they forgot to engage the inshalla’s

  43. 67 Pat December 3, 2008 at 6:04 pm

    Cain Crew’s claim that no Airbus aircraft have ever crashed with passengers aboard is clearly wrong.

    American Airlines Flight 587 crashed on November 12, 2001 killing all 251 passengers and nine crew and five people on the ground.

    The NTSB ruled the crash was a result of both pilot error and design flaws in the vertical stabilizer of the A300-600.

    • 68 M Blackwell August 31, 2009 at 9:27 am

      You could document all Boeing crashes. But who has the time? At least Airbus runs tests before delivery.

      • 69 Ken December 28, 2009 at 4:06 pm

        Apparently they don’t! They hired Abu Dhabi Aircraft Technologies to do this one! What a fine job they did, too!

  44. 70 Jon Hopkins December 16, 2008 at 1:47 am

    To American posters in this forum; please stop trying to explain the incident in terms of national characteristics. The rest of the world is not entirely stupid and evil.

  45. 71 Dave December 26, 2008 at 2:27 am

    ADAT crew error. Hushed up because of embarrassment to you know who. Probably learning to take off and not land.

  46. 72 Otto January 7, 2009 at 3:13 pm

    I run a flight training program that sees a lot of Middle Eastern customers. Many are not stupid. Mostly arogant and insulted that Americans have to teach them something. It is a cultural thing and must be dealt with. On the other hand, many are just not cut out for flying but their pridefull nature prevents them from acknowledging it. By the way, what was the Airbus employee doing in the cockpit to prevent the alleged safety protocol bypass

  47. 73 Monster January 22, 2009 at 4:16 pm

    what a stupid tech crew of Etihad airways not only the tech crew the cabin crew also stupid as i saw one incident happen onboard while im paxing from Abu Dhabi to KUL,they even know the safety procedures as me and my crew member from Malaysia Airlines have to perform CPR to the passenger who fainted because of chocking.see how stupid are they

  48. 74 Els January 29, 2009 at 12:03 pm

    All due respect to everyone involved in the above conversation, testing pilots are extremely qualified and has skill above normal levels, thus, do not rule out mechanical error, in which case Airbus and not Etihad should come forward and accept resposibility

    • 75 Ken December 28, 2009 at 3:21 pm

      They didn’t read the run-up manuals!! Read Bob J’s comments above.

  49. 76 Tatyana February 11, 2009 at 5:21 pm

    i am so glad no-one was hurt, imagine the death toll. u know these planes are too big, how can this happen. i was reading this article in the newspaper today. i was shocked, i hope everyone is alright. u know, it happened in 2007, but where i am from we are behind the times. i am from lumbumbashi, u see. so i am sorry.

  50. 77 jimbo jones February 20, 2009 at 5:47 pm

    Reading all the comments from americans on this board brings to mind one word… “facepalm”

    • 78 Bob May 25, 2011 at 8:37 pm

      All?? I am an American. What do you find faulty with what I have posted? I feel soooo boxed in…

  51. 79 Harry March 20, 2009 at 7:48 pm

    Subject: Wow- watch which airline you pick!!!
    Here are the real reasons gentlemen!!!!!

    _____

    Directions? we don’t need no stinkin’ directions !

    The brand spanking new Airbus 340-600, the largest passenger airplane ever
    built, sat in its hangar in Toulouse , France without a single hour of
    airtime. Enter the Arab flight crew of Abu Dhabi Aircraft Technologies
    (ADAT) to conduct pre-delivery tests on the ground, such as engine run-ups,
    prior to delivery to Etihad Airways in Abu Dhabi.

    The ADAT crew taxied the A340-600 to the run-up area. Then they took all
    four engines to takeoff power with a virtually empty aircraft. Not having
    read the run-up manuals, they had no clue just how light an empty
    A340-600 really is.

    The takeoff warning horn was blaring away in the cockpit because they had
    all 4 engines at full power. The aircraft computers thought they were trying
    to take off but the aircraft had not been configured properly (flaps/slats,
    etc.) Then one of the ADAT crew decided to pull the circuit breaker on the
    Ground Proximity Sensor to silence the alarm.

    This fooled the aircraft into thinking it was in the air.

    The computers automatically released all the brakes and set the aircraft
    rocketing forward. The ADAT crew had no idea that this is a safety feature
    so that pilots can’t land with the brakes on.

    Not one member of the seven-man Arab crew was bright enough to throttle back
    the engines from their max power setting, so the $200 million brand-new
    aircraft crashed into a blast barrier, totaling it.

    The extent of injuries to the crew is unknown for there has been a news
    blackout in the major media in France and elsewhere. Coverage of the story
    was deemed insulting to Muslim Arabs. Finally, the photos are starting to
    leak out.

  52. 80 Harry March 21, 2009 at 2:31 am

    I run a flight training program that sees a lot of Middle Eastern customers. Many are not stupid. Mostly arogant and insulted that Americans have to teach them something. It is a cultural thing and must be dealt with. On the other hand, many are just not cut out for flying but their pridefull nature prevents them from acknowledging it. By the way, what was the Airbus employee doing in the cockpit to prevent the alleged safety protocol bypass (By Otto)
    So what??? They are not ,,proud’, they are masking their stupidity. The entire crew was arab in that plane, and they rather kill people and passengers than staying away from those machines. These planes should be flown by normal pilots and never by ,,proud” scrooges playing with innocent lives. Cultural??? It`s barbarism!

  53. 81 Harry March 25, 2009 at 6:04 pm

    Muslim pilot who prayed gets 10 years jail
    By MR PAUL on Wed, 25/03/2009 – 12:59pm
    Jailed for 10 years, the Muslim pilot who paused to pray before taking emergency action in plane crash that killed 16

    By Mail Foreign Service.

    A Muslim pilot and co-pilot who paused to pray before taking emergency measures as they ditched a passenger plane in the sea, killing 16 people, has been sentenced to 10 years in jail.

    Pilot Chafik Gharby and co-pilot Ali Kebaier were convicted of taking inadequate emergency measures by an Italian court.

    The 2005 crash at sea off Sicily left survivors swimming for their lives, some clinging to a piece of the fuselage that remained floating after the ATR turbo-prop aircraft splintered upon impact.
    The fuselage and wings of the plane sink into the Mediterranean Sea off Palermo’s port on the Sicilian coast, southern Italy, after the crash on August 6, 2005

    There were 34 holidaymakers and five crew on board the plane when it went down.

    Rest of the comment removed.

  54. 82 Beachrider March 28, 2009 at 12:24 am

    Since literacy seems to be a major failure on the part of most posters on this site… Perhaps the test crew were the same? Can’t spell, don’t want to learn and ‘Ain’t gonna read that stoopid instruction book??’

  55. 83 szafi March 28, 2009 at 8:49 pm

    Beachrider: by “posters” I hope you mean commenters and not us, who write the blog. We always try our best and I hope you like the posts themselves.

  56. 84 RaiulBaztepo March 29, 2009 at 1:42 am

    Hello!
    Very Interesting post! Thank you for such interesting resource!
    PS: Sorry for my bad english, I’v just started to learn this language ;)
    See you!
    Your, Raiul Baztepo

  57. 85 Bobloblaw April 2, 2009 at 12:09 am

    Is anybody else suspiscious that the pics are NOT of an A340?? Doesn’t look anywhere big enough….my guess is 747…but more likely a Boeing 707….

  58. 86 Tim April 2, 2009 at 2:46 pm

    Harry, I love your fabricated stories. What are your sources? Even the first sentence is incorrect “the largest passenger airplane ever
    built” Nope, it’s not. It might almost be belivable if it wasn’t so full of hatefull messages toward French and Arabs.

  59. 87 KJM April 3, 2009 at 12:18 am

    I was told the ground proximity breaker. It was pulled because the horn was too loud. That would make the plane think it is trying to take off and release the brakes. I’d be it was operator error due to a lack of proper training.Maybe they should have an Airbus pilot do the testing.

  60. 88 Someone you don't know April 3, 2009 at 1:07 am

    What I would like to know is why [how many, 7?] people were on the plane, yet not one thought enough to either turn off the engines or take off. Hmmmmm. . .and are we sure these people were really pilots?

  61. 89 BobbyMac April 3, 2009 at 5:53 pm

    Unfortunately, it’s only a few Americans that ruin it for the rest of us. We aren’t all ignorant Muslim and French haters. As for the accident, it was just that… an accident.

    • 90 Ken December 28, 2009 at 4:15 pm

      … that was completely preventable! How can you send people in to run-up the new plane who didn’t bother to read the run-up manuals?! And by doing so, couldn’t deal with the problem when all hell broke loose.

      I’m sure these people aren’t stupid. It’s obvious they don’t care about what they’re doing, though.

  62. 91 DaddyMac April 3, 2009 at 8:19 pm

    It was not “just an accident”. The crew disengaged the system that was locking the brakes, this caused the accident. An accidental bump of the elbow would make it a bonafide accident.

  63. 92 TruthSetsYouFree April 3, 2009 at 8:21 pm

    Airbus planes no crash do they.
    Preliminary
    Preliminary
    11/27/2008

    Perpignan, France
    AIRBUS A320
    D-AXLA
    Fatal(7)
    NSCH Non-U.S., Non-Commercial

    Factual
    Factual
    5/30/2008

    Tegucgalpa, Honduras
    Airbus Industrie A320-233
    EI-TAF
    Fatal(5)
    SCHD Groupo Taca Airlines

    Factual
    Factual
    7/17/2007

    Sao Paulo, Brazil
    Airbus Industrie A320-233
    PR-MBK
    Fatal(199)
    SCHD TAM Linhas Aéreas

    Preliminary
    Preliminary
    7/8/2006

    Irkutsk, Russia
    Airbus Industrie A310-300
    F-OGYP
    Fatal(124)
    SCHD

  64. 93 Zebulon April 13, 2009 at 10:59 pm

    Don’t any of you have a life? Read a book and maybe your brains won’t so numb.

  65. 94 Matthew Sobel April 20, 2009 at 4:45 pm

    My ISraeli brother laughed so hard about the crew crashing this plane. If it were mechanical failure, the FAA would report this immediately. It is EITHAD failure through and through. This is the same as the guy at the factory who tapes down machine safety buttons because they annoy him. He loses a finger/arm/or other penile extremity…and sues. Notice EITHAD isn’t suing? Because they have all our money from oil anyway. Airbus should simply cut them off from all jet liner supplies. never forget 9/11.

  66. 95 Murray Renser April 21, 2009 at 10:16 pm

    This strengthens the argument that Allah made camels for a reason.

  67. 96 David April 27, 2009 at 11:24 am

    The below is from another website.

    The accident report, in French. Some translating for those who don’t read Francais below.

    http://www.bea.aero/docspa/2007/f-cj071115/pdf/f-cj071115.pdf

    This is info from the accident investigation report, from the French version of the NTSB (I believe), the BEA:

    A. Mixed ground test crew of 9 on board: some from Airbus proper, based there in Toulouse, some from the Abu Dhabi-based contractor working on the airline’s behalf.

    3 people in the cockpit for the test: 2 from Airbus, one from the contractor.

    Running the test, in the right seat of the cockpit, in charge of the all controls: Airbus technician, 15 yr employee, 9 yrs experience testing these engines. When he was alerted that the aircraft was moving, his only actions were to kill the parking brake while simultaneously stomping on the main brakes.

    In the left seat, observing the test: contractor employee, alerted the test tech that the aircraft was moving. Has no specified role in the test other than to observe.

    In the “service” seat (like the navigator’s seat, only the A340 ain’t got no navigator, I don’t believe): Airbus-employed test pilot, 9 yrs experience as a professional pilot, 7 as a test pilot, not type rated (i.e., not an A340 pilot), perhaps a manager qualified to supervise such tests. Once again, no specific role other than to observe, but in the end it was him who pulled the throttles back.

    B. There were two main causes: 1) no chocks were used to hold the aircraft’s wheels in place during the test. 2) All four engines were brought to full power to test one leaky engine. Procedures required the use of chocks and running up two engines – the one leaking and one on the other wing (to prevent torquing and yawing of the fuselage). These two procedures had been frequently ignored by all Airbus technicians at the test center for some time.

    Short answer: the test was done improperly, not in accordance with written procedures and standards. The fault of the Airbus technician.

    Contributing causes: 1) the full power of four engines is almost exactly equal to the braking power of the A340s parking brake and the frictional coefficient of the test area’s tarmac, hence the aircraft only moved when shaking of the aircraft and the burning off of fuel lessened the overall braking coefficient. 2) The technician tried to use the brakes alone to stop the aircraft rather than retarding the throttles as well.

    C. Fun fact: the numbers 3 and 4 engines could not be shut down after impact because the throttle control connection to them had been severed. No. 4 was finally killed over two-and-a-half hours later when enough water and fire-fighting foam had been pumped into it to snuff it out. The No. 3 engine died at 1:25 am the next morning – 9 hrs later – when it ran out of gas: it was too jammed into the wall to get any water/foam into it. Now THAT’S hi-larious. And not a bad advertisement for Rolls-Royce engines, it seems to me.

  68. 97 adam April 27, 2009 at 6:23 pm

    Did no one read that “the 9 people onboard (including 7 Etihad employees” part… Etihad has what is called an acceptance crew like every other airline…
    This is what happens when you give people who only stopped herding goats for a living 30 years ago the most sophisticated acft on the planet…
    You throttle it up with out slats and flaps and the plane will warn you… You dont want to listen to the warning… so you trick the plane to thinking its in the air by pulling a few circuit breakers… Hmm to bad the smart plane knows it does not need breaks to be set in the air… And no one thought to pull the throttles back?
    Stupid people…..

  69. 98 Kitsune April 30, 2009 at 3:06 pm

    Truly amazing how the bullshit story about the evil, stupid arabs is in 10x more places on the web right now than the real story. Isn’t it so much easier and more fun to just hate and assume about an entire race of people than spend 5 minutes searching to find out what really happened? David’s post is correct, this crash was entirely the fault of a rather foolish mistake on the part of an Airbus technician; the one ADAT observer on board the plane was in no way at fault. But, of course, that story isn’t quite as much fun to spread, is it?

  70. 99 Fiesta Norm May 14, 2009 at 7:33 am

    To all those idiots out there who immediately decided to blame the “arab” pilot.

    Offical Respone:

    Short answer: the test was done improperly, not in accordance with written procedures and standards. The fault of the Airbus technician. 1) no chocks were used to hold the aircraft’s wheels in place during the test. 2) All four engines were brought to full power to test one leaky engine. Procedures required the use of chocks…

    Bigotry is not an excuse for your stupidity. Go spew your hatred somewhere else.

    It’s an accident. That’s it!!

  71. 100 stevejw June 2, 2009 at 1:15 am

    It was hardly an accident… During the particular checks they were undertaking, a warning would have be sounding. The ONLY way to turn this off would have lead to the aircraft believing that it was up in the air, therefore releasing the breaks and taking off. With all four engines on high, this led to the head on crash into the wall.
    Of course they did not follow procedure because if they did, this would not have happened. If they followed procedure, they would know NOT to flick the switch that disables the warning sound. It’s sounds a warning for a reason.

  72. 101 Iain June 7, 2009 at 12:47 pm

    I agree with the last comment by stevejw. The problem with the test pilots is that they had not gone through pre-test procedures properly. However, this does raise a bigger issue with Airbus: it seems to me that pilots are too often in conflcit with the software on these planes.
    At the smae time I find the comment about “Arabs” particularily pathetic and unnecessary, and further comments about “French” this and that bizarre. Is it really a cultural phemonenon that people from the USA need to always go down this boring predictable path? If so then we are never going to get to the bottom of any accident investigation, are we?

  73. 102 Mommik June 11, 2009 at 10:27 am

    Thats why God gave the Arabs the camels…….

    • 103 Joseph June 13, 2009 at 4:17 am

      It is beyond me why some writers are choosing to use this post to negatively label others with stupidity and lack of intelligence, when in reality they are gasping for attention because no one is buying their superiority complex anymore. In Newark Airport, 2 American mechanics where taxing an MD-80 aircraft from the hanger to the gate and when they went to stop it they discovered that they have forgotten to fix the breaks, so the plane slammed into the terminal nearly missing the 2 mechanics who were pinned down in the cockpit.
      Another one happened in a N.C. USA, EXpressJet hanger, where the mechanics were testing the engines and the RJ-145 took off and slammed into 2 other RJ-145s damaging all 3 planes.
      I am sure there were other operators from other countries and faiths who had mishaps with air crafts before.
      Stop the stereotyping and focus on the accident on hand, so we can learn from their mistakes. Copy??

  74. 104 Eddy June 14, 2009 at 2:49 pm

    Call Michael Jackson’s nose surgeon :)

  75. 105 JCE July 20, 2009 at 8:45 pm

    How fast was this plane going “at full throttle” while on the ground? Does anyone know the answer?

  76. 106 balint01 July 21, 2009 at 11:10 am

    Hi JCE,
    the speed of the airplane was not disclosed. But you need to understand, that it had all breaks applied when they put full throttle on. So the plane was not moving at that point, as the breaks would be holding it. Then they turned off the warning which made the plane believe it is in the air, and it released the breaks automatically. This was the point, when the plane started to move – with full throttle on – and climbed up on the sound protecting wall. I believe the plane was not really going at high speeds, but had a full throttle of power trying to make it climb the wall – which resulted in the large damage.

    • 107 Closeau July 28, 2009 at 6:03 am

      The problem is, nobody turned off any warning or disable a circuit breaker, that’s all just lies. Read the official report. The problem was the wheels weren’t chocked, and the airbus employee tried to stop it using the brakes rather than decreasing the engines, two stupid mistakes which produced the crash.

      • 108 elemes August 13, 2009 at 6:37 am

        Closeau,

        Chocks would not be able to hold the plane in this case.

        Generally, chocks can be used to hold a plane when it is parked with engines off, in case of loss of parking brake pressure. You know, parking places might not be perfectly level.

        Use of chocks during engine ground test procedures are described in detail in Boeing fight manuals:
        1. place the chock in front of the wheels, 6-10 inches apart from the wheel.
        2. only one engine can be tested at full power. in order to protect landing gears from excessive torque, another engine (located symmetrically on the other wing) shall (or can) be run, but only for its nominal power.
        3. ground personnel shall continuously monitor distance of wheels to chocks. Should any of the weels move the ground personnel shall immediately warn cockpit to stop engine test.
        4. chocks must not be put directly in front of the wheels. when power is applied, the wheels are stretching forwards a bit. In case there is a chock in front of the wheel some of the weight of the plane would be relocated from the wheel to the chock. frictional force between the chock and the concrete is significantly lower than those between wheel and the concrete. therefore, the chock would certainly start slipping.

        never put chock directly

      • 109 Bob May 25, 2011 at 8:54 pm

        OMG you really believe what you posted? Why use brakes if the parking brakes were applied? You wouldn’t need to. There is no way even at full throttle the airplane could have sustained this much damage if the brakes had been on the whole time.

        What astounds me is that something like 12 to 14 seconds went by without anyone thinking “Oh crap! Shut down the engines!” It is my understanding that there was an ADAT pilot and an Airbus technician in the cockpit at the time of the incident, so it is not like there was no qualified pilot here.

        Things went way wrong and both panicked. You hear of people who stuff their foot down on the accelerator in cars thinking they are applying the brakes and then swear the brakes failed, when examination of the computer shows the brakes were never applied, but instead the throttle was maxed. Beyond the obvious contempt for procedure on multiple levels, this is what happened. People panicked.

  77. 110 Giles August 13, 2009 at 12:12 pm

    I cannot understand why people whould laugh at this because it was a French airplane. When a Boeing, or an Antonov, or any kind of airplanes crashes, it’s a sad news for the whole industry.

    Come on guys, we are living on the same planet. The first man to fly was a Frenchman, aboard a balloon, one of the first planes was also French, like the bicycle, like the Statue of Liberty, like Lafayette who helped free America. Did you know that French revolution happened because the king sent too much money to America to help fight the British ?

    And in a way, Airbus is another revolution : as Boeing was falling asleep, happy with it’s own success, Europe opted for indenpendance and created a company, Airbus, that learned from Boeing and invented many interesting things. It’s a competition, this is why this industry is interesting. Would you watch the Olympics Games with only one competitor ? Boeing is building great airplanes, so does Airbus, and wait until you see the airplanes from China in the coming twenty years! Creativity is equally shared among humans, as is stupidity, as shown by this accident.

  78. 111 louis November 4, 2009 at 9:02 pm

    i was astonished to read the vast number of ignorant, xenophobic,groundless and gratuitously biased comments.

    accidents do happen everywhere, that is why nations have enormous accident investigation bureaux, and so do manufacturers.

    in this case, as is usually the case, there was NOT a single cause but rather an accumulation of factors:
    – absence of chocks.
    – four engines run at full power not just two.
    – pilot in left hand seat (usual in command) failed to reach for the vevers and pull them back.
    – pilot in right hande seat also failed to pull back levers.
    – someone reached over both and pulled circuit breaker – really?

    the above are probably written clearly in the procedures therefore not much can be done now other than to say FOLLOW PROCEDURES everytime 100%.

    but wait for the formal report before making azinine noises.

  79. 112 Kermazov November 27, 2009 at 1:40 pm

    human power is always superior to machine power. While fly-by-wire (Airbus patent dialog ehh!!) certainly has its role, you cannot ignore the perils of instrument failures. Why spend millions to discover an antigravity pen when there is a 1 cent pencil??? Definately a point to ponder.

    • 113 Flyindoctor December 23, 2009 at 6:36 am

      This story came to my attention 13 months after the fact, and I have a question. What is the likelihood that Airbus is pinning the blame on it’s own personnel at the request of Etihad? In other words: for the sake of public perception, the Airbus tech gets lynched. Etihad saves face, Airbus saves delivery contracts.

      I find it quite peculiar that procedures that would be considered entirely routine for a manufacturer would be so flagrantly blown. On the other hand , procedures not routine for an operator might easily be blown. Etihad/ ADAT trundles out in their new bird for an un-briefed ground evolution and procedes to screw the proverbial pooch. Photos in Etihad livery make it into the interwebz, and Aibus dives on the grenade to preserve appearances for their valued customer.

  80. 114 Davey of Cornwall January 4, 2010 at 3:22 am

    As a retired engineer I have seen a few things and learnt a lot. Now as to airline pilots it used to be said that when one travelled on a jetliner the pilot may not have flown one before! – he’d done hundreds of hours on similar planes and SIMULATORS. (The simulator method can save millions and millions of dollars – and lives) About forty years ago a colleague who was experienced in flying Tiger Moths was given a treat by his airline pilot neighbour. Spare time on a 707 simulator at the airport! The landings were unsuccessful “takes ages before it does anything!” and to his chagrin John “decked it into the concrete” three times out of three! These days one get get the “flavour” of a plane on a home PC so the $64,000 question has to be “why weren’t the staff given simulator training before trying the real thing?” Unfortunately Murphys Law has no respect for rank, seniority or VIPs as this case and many others shows. Messing with fly-by-wire, or drive-by-wire is a recipe for disaster. By the way, there are quite a few countries where people get top jobs because of who their relatives are. Being the kings son doesn’t automatically give one the skills to fly the Airbus, Space Shuttle etc but they think it does!

  81. 115 Jovenus January 11, 2010 at 3:43 pm

    I stumbled upon this blog while searching for the truth. Can’t believe after 2 years there are still bigots circulating chain mails insulting the Arabs that they should ride their camels instead of flying planes. I just read the email today.

    Thanks for all your comments. I learnt a lot. Esp David.

  82. 116 CircuitBurner February 16, 2010 at 2:36 pm

    Several points here, and not to repeat much as much has been said already.
    With a craft as large and complex as this fly-by-wire device, the human element must not be ignored or trusted.
    Humans are the world greatest saboteurs, whether intentional or not. So many things were ignored probably because the crew had grown accustomed to short-cuts on the job. Skip safety steps, run 4 engines instead of two, save time, we do this all the time , we know what we are doing, party tonite, bills due, just watched 2 hours of porn, oh that alarm sucks, we dont need this inconveinience of alarms… kill the alarm… oh im so smart, I do this all the time, pulls breaker, so caught up in personal bullshit didnt notice for a few seconds plane moving, once plane rolls forward at full throttle air intake into engines quickly multiplies thrust amny times over. Breaker removed so no brakes… oh shit no brakes ! OH SHIT NO BRAKES! blinded by the no brakes situations- deer in the headlights and frozen arms.
    THe crew (arab, french, martian, alien… dont matter) was at fault, not the aircraft.
    Airbus building cutting edge, almost ‘too advanced for human consumption’ aircraft and placing conventional pilots or personel unqualified to even control such advanced and complex systems in emergencies… combined, this creates planes kissing ground.
    there …
    Stupid Humans!

    (electronic-only controls for dangerous equipment is disaster waiting!)

    TOYOTA anyone? LOL

    LEARN and design hard controls augmented by limited electronic assist.

  83. 117 phyberlink April 8, 2010 at 2:22 pm

    The only way I can believe that this really happened, is to find the Production number and SERIAL NUMBER of the Aircraft.

  84. 118 Mike Dunn June 21, 2010 at 11:44 pm

    Calm down with the Arab bashing folks! First we are talking about the BEST AIRLINE in the world as judged by people who actually fly Etihad….secondly, Airbus aircraft are famous for “having a mind of their own”…onboard computers have frequent run-ins with pilots who help the computer fly the plane…unlike Boeings, where the computers help the pilots fly the plane!…Before you start all the childiah Arab Bashing, wait for the results of a proper investigation.

  85. 119 Mike Dunn June 21, 2010 at 11:45 pm

    heheheh…childish that was…Blush

  86. 120 ali July 16, 2010 at 12:17 pm

    i always travel in etihad airlines :(

  87. 121 Gabe August 31, 2010 at 5:32 am

    Without going into details, I do not think the circuit breaker (CB) is to be blamed. Even though the CB is pulled out (to silence the warning) it should not allow the system to release the brakes. The air-ground sensors at the landing gear shock absorbs are the backup devices for making sure where the airplane is: in the air or on ground. These are mechanical position sensors.

  88. 122 Grant McPeetie September 19, 2010 at 12:29 pm

    The blog itself lacks some professionalism. All those bold typefaces and unqualified “facts” would not be acceptable in the normal media. Who said these things? Who gave you this information? Can you link any of this info to a specific person giving a specific quote? I’m sure you could. In journalism its called “fact checking,’ and its so important, someone gets paid to do it.

    Also, I got better photos in my email than are shown here, but I concede that all publications have space limits especially when it comes to photos. As for all the bashing and counter-bashing — it’s called free speech. No one is forcing you to read it, but at least we’re all given the opportunity to rate it.

    I don’t care about the article’s spelling and punctuation as much as your journalistic standards. And just to qualify my remarks, I have a degree in magazine journalism from the university of missouri-columbia. I really don’t expect you to abide by the stringent rules of the print media, but using bold-faced fonts is unnecessary and points to a lack of objectivity. You’ll get better responses if the article itself is polished up a bit.

    • 123 Grant McPeetie September 19, 2010 at 12:40 pm

      Wait, I saw some quote’s in the updates, so I’m happy about that, thank you! I still don’t like the use of boldfaces and italics though. To each his own I suppose.

      Ultimately I’m just glad to hear no one was killed and my condolences go out to the injured. I don’t care who’s fault it was– that’s someone else’s job. What an expensive lesson!

  89. 124 Jorge September 22, 2010 at 10:53 pm

    WTF are you all talking about???????

    The BEA (http://www.bea.aero) is the French equivalent to the FAA.
    Here is the official report: http://www.bea.aero/docspa/2007/f-cj071115/pdf/f-cj071115.pdf. In French. Get a translator.

    Main factual points:
    1. There were only THREE PEOPLE in the cockpit. Doesn’t matter if there were 9 or 2000 involved, there were just THREE PEOPLE in the cockpit. Only TWO PEOPLE were sitting in the pilot and co-pilot seas. And only ONE GUY was commanding the test. And he was AIRBUS PERSONNEL. On the other seat was an observer from GAMCO, a maintenace company contracted by Etihad. He was NOT, repeat NOT, Etihad personnel, and definitely NOT an Etihad pilot.

    2. There were no chocks in place. Procedure requires chocks. Ground crews avoid using them because “after tests they become wedged under the wheels and the aircraft need to be repositioned to take them off”. It’s in the report. Real smart guys! If that happens it is because the plane MOVES during test. Hence the need for chocks. BTW that’s probably the reason why Boeing gets them a little ahead from the wheels; they are there just in case but they do not get caught by a small movement. Chocks might not have completely stopped the plane but would have bought a few more secs (see point 6)

    3. All four engines were revved up to full power. Procedure requires that only the one being tested should be taken to full power and its twin on the other wing to somewhat less than full.

    4. Only 13 seconds passed since the plane began to move until it hit the wall. Not much time to react if you are not trained for it. Ground test crews weren’t. In that time the plane went from 0 to 31 knots, almost 60 km/h.

    5. The Airbus guy in command never tried to rev down the engines. He was assuming a brake failure. The third guy, in the backseat, tried to, but they were already hitting the wall.

    6. The Airbus guy in command released the parking brake and pressed on the pedal brakes (they can’t work together). While the first disengaged and the second engaged, a couple of seconds passed with reduced braking power. Then he didn’t apply constant force on the pedals, kind of “pumping” the brakes, so the max braking power was never reached. Not that it would have made any good.

    Main speculative points:
    1. The nationality of the guy performing the test is not mentioned in the report but he was probably French, since there are not many non-Frenchs in those positions. Not many non-Europeans either. And not many non-Western-Europeans, at that. French are VERY nationalistic.

    2. The nationality of the observer wasn’t mentioned either, but Gamco recruits all over the place (H.K., Singapore, Australia, etc) so he could have been anything. Actually LOTS of technical posts are filled by foreigners in the Arab Middle East. Arabs go for management. So, the Arab bashing is completely out of place.

    3. It’s claimed again and again and again that the Arab crew didn’t read “the manual”. There is no “manual” as such. It’s a freaking plane, not an iPod. There are certifications. Anyway, let’s say it was an Araba crew that never read the manual. How the F. did they know which breaker to pull to quiet the alarm?? Was there a big sign: PULL THIS BREAKER IN CASE OF ANNOYING SOUNDS?

    4. So, I’d say that the braking system in a plane it’s preeetty important, right? Say there is a line of planes taxing to the head of the runway waiting for take-off. We wouldn’t want one of them braking thingies to fail and have a plane full of ppl, bagagge and aviation fuel to ram the one in front of it right? Kinda messy, it would be. Well then, how come Airbus engineers designed a plane whose brakes would disengage just by pulling a lousy breaker? I don’t think they did. It’s utter crap.

    So, 99% of this post, in favor or against Frenchmen and/or Arab, are total crap. Some even just cut-and-pasted an e-mail! Come on! When was the last time anyone read a trustworthy one???

  90. 125 D Miller, PA October 7, 2010 at 9:53 am

    For all those non-Americans I appologize for my ignorant fellow American Racists. I agree with the comments that we all learn things from accidents no matter where and how they occur. Having flown on Boeing and Airbus products I have no particular preference. Since the Chinese are now launching probes to the Moon it is obvious that as one observer on this website indicated they will very soon be producing aircraft of their own. Hopefully they will learn from design and operational errors made by others.

    • 126 samyzud November 1, 2010 at 5:50 pm

      Let’s just hope that the Arabs received equally “thorough” training and their pilots are equally “capable” to fly the new f-16 and f-15s they just bought from US.

    • 127 Steve G December 21, 2010 at 7:25 pm

      Don’t apologize for this American, D-Mill!
      America has a lower percentage of racists than any country I have ever visited. There are regions of the world where you will be killed for nothing more than being different, and “different” only means a slightly different interpretation of the exact same religion! Agreed, America has its share of sloped-forehead racists, and the anonymity of the internet seems to bring them out in droves, but they are ignored or chastised in the situations I have witnessed in person.
      Like my brother-in-law. But I digress…

      One thing I find interesting about this thread, and others regarding this incident, is that the posters who use terms like “stupid” and “racist” also use terms like “full throttle” and believe that you can override an aircraft’s computer by flipping a circuit breaker. They also ridicule “English as a second language” posters for the spelling of “brakes”.

      Then, the posters who use terms like “N1″ and “Compressor Speed” and are obviously NOT “Simulator Pilots” get ridiculed.

      Funny stuff.

  91. 128 Zafar Iqbal November 20, 2010 at 8:46 pm

    Guys,

    Can we be humans first, and then Muslims, Arabs, French and others?

    Let us not laugh at the mistakes of others; let us hope it does not happen to us.

    And let us not spread any rumours and canards, please.

    We are supposed to be civilised people, taking civility everywhere.

    Thanks.

  92. 129 Kristopher December 27, 2010 at 11:45 am

    The reason the test crew didn’t read the manuals was probably because a superior refused to pass them down.

    From this article:

    Information as Power

    In every society information is a means of making a living or wielding power, but Arabs husband information and hold it especially tightly. U.S. trainers have often been surprised over the years by the fact that information provided to key personnel does not get much further than them. Having learned to perform some complicated procedure, an Arab technician knows that he is invaluable so long as he is the only one in a unit to have that knowledge; once he dispenses it to others he no longer is the only font of knowledge and his power dissipates. This explains the commonplace hoarding of manuals, books, training pamphlets, and other training or logistics literature. On one occasion, an American mobile training team working with armor in Egypt at long last received the operators’ manuals that had laboriously been translated into Arabic. The American trainers took the newly-minted manuals straight to the tank park and distributed them to the tank crews. Right behind them, the company commander, a graduate of the armor school at Fort Knox and specialized courses at the Aberdeen Proving Grounds ordnance school, collected the manuals from the crews. Questioned why he did this, the commander said that there was no point in giving them to the drivers because enlisted men could not read. In point of fact, he did not want enlisted men to have an independent source of knowledge. Being the only person who can explain the fire control instrumentation or boresight artillery weapons brings prestige and attention. In military terms this means that very little cross-training is accomplished and that, for instance in a tank crew, the gunners, loaders, and drivers might be proficient in their jobs but are not prepared to fill in for a casualty. Not understanding one another’s jobs also inhibits a smoothly functioning crew. At a higher level it means there is no depth in technical proficiency.

    • 130 Lynne Diligent November 3, 2012 at 3:22 pm

      The article you linked to was one of the best I have ever read. Thanks for posting this and for providing the link. I’ve lived in the Middle East, as an educator and business person, for 20 years, and found all the descriptions of training difficulties in the military also equally describing the relationships in every business I’ve ever worked in here, between the boss and subordinates.

  93. 131 Dave Barton December 29, 2010 at 3:43 am

    I must have received dozens of E-Mails in the last few months relating to this incident and to say the least I was sceptical as to the racist comments and lack if actual facts……
    All I can really say,not being an aeronautical engineer or pilot as all the previous posters seem to be is that I am truly saddened to see such a beautiful machine in pieces.
    I have always had a love for aircraft and seeing one damaged to this extent I find truly upsetting

    Sorry I cannot add any comments regarding the pilots or manufacturers stupidity as I am not qualified,but I don’t think you need a mass of qualifications to just love airplanes….

  94. 132 Cyrus Gallinaro April 4, 2011 at 9:09 pm

    Wohh exactly what I was searching for, appreciate it for putting up.

  95. 133 Whale Jocky April 29, 2011 at 3:03 am

    Hi,

    Although I have no sympathy towards neither Chinese, nor Arab pilots but, I feel that I am compelled to put the report into perspective.
    Therefore I invite you to read the entire report carefully http://www.flightglobal.com/articles…-a340-600.html and pay particular attention to the fact that there were no pilots in that cockpit not even one Arab, Chinese, or French etc. The group of 9 people were consisted of ADAT maintenance employees ( people who fix airplanes) and Airbus’s own technical team and yes, based on CVR the head Airbus technician was occupying the right seat in the cockpit which means he could reach up the thrust levers with his left hand and pull them back at anytime, but he didn’t!! Also in the report, its been mentioned several times that the airplane was not chocked meaning the main gear (the tires) as a matter of standard operating procedure (around the world) required to be chocked. This undeniably being the Airbus’s fault because the test-pen in Toulouse, France owned and operated by Airbus and not the Arabs.

    So, next time for all the hip-shooters out there F*&^ you and the horse you rode in. And I would love to make you go back and pick all them road apples you left behind.

    Blue Skies and Tail Winds.

  96. 134 Josh June 22, 2011 at 2:44 am

    Obviously the genius’ on the flight deck forgot, that the brakes kick off when take off power is applied….dah..these guys minds are like a bag of hammers!

  97. 135 Ethan Arnold August 15, 2011 at 12:00 pm

    The quote “not one of them thought to pull back the throttles” is bullshit because turbine engines react slowly to throttle setting changes. It would have taken 10 seconds or more to start coming down, by that time the impact was already inevitable. And I cant blame anyone, shocked in that situation of rocketing off completely unexpectedly, to not react perfectly: a) pull back throttles, b) put the fuse back in (if you can even reach the fuse while accelerating in takeoff mode, probably everyone was lying in a heap on the floor trying to get back up), and c) slam on the footbrakes

  98. 136 Paul February 16, 2012 at 12:21 am

    Does anyone know the difference between brakes and breaks?

  99. 137 Kayson April 27, 2012 at 10:59 am

    Airbus should have gone through more test before sending the aircraft to test flight

  100. 138 bayrider October 4, 2012 at 6:13 pm

    Very interesting to hear that eithad had family members of the owners of the airline in the cockpit at the time if incident & it appears there were 10 people on board so who exactly was sitting in the hot seat ?


  1. 1 Etihad Airbus Crash Pictures « Airline world Trackback on November 26, 2007 at 11:02 am
  2. 2 Singapore Airlines Takes Delivery of Second Airbus A380 « Airline world Trackback on January 20, 2008 at 5:09 am
  3. 3 Air Crash ? Hope This Is A Sick Joke. - Alfa Romeo Forum Trackback on June 4, 2008 at 1:30 pm
  4. 4 Full Circle of Life » Blog Archive » I had a choice… Trackback on July 12, 2008 at 1:05 am
  5. 5 Why you should always read the manual first!! - GT40s.com Trackback on March 8, 2009 at 1:44 am
  6. 6 Abu Dhabi Aircraft Technologies Crash - Abu Dhabi, UAE Trackback on March 22, 2009 at 9:26 am
  7. 7 brand new A340-600 totaled - Airline Pilot Central Forums Trackback on April 23, 2009 at 7:48 am
  8. 8 Philippe Welti · Kommunikation: Verstehen, was ist. » Etihad-Image übersteht Crash schadlos Trackback on August 26, 2009 at 7:55 am
  9. 9 AVIATION KNOWLEDGE: Crash of Airbus 340-600: A Study on HFACS Trackback on September 2, 2009 at 3:02 pm

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s




Blog calendar

November 2007
M T W T F S S
« Oct   Dec »
 1234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
2627282930  

Archives


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 115 other followers

%d bloggers like this: