Plane Crash in Lexington, KY

Discussion in '2006 Archive' started by El_Guero, Aug 27, 2006.

  1. El_Guero

    El_Guero
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  2. mcdirector

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    on the way home from church, we were listening to the news conference, but didn't have much to connect. Very frustrating knowing that something terrible has happened and not knowing what it was.

    Sounds like lots of speculation too at this point.

    My prayers are with the families, investigators, emergency teams working the area.
     
  3. TaterTot

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    I didnt know of this trajedy until someone mentioned it in his closing prayer after church. My prayers are with all those who are hurting.
     
  4. FBCPastorsWife

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    Oh my goodness! This is the first I have heard of this! Definitely will be praying!
     
  5. Joseph M. Smith

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    I used to live near Bluegrass Airport. Joining you in prayer. It is humbling to think that every time we fly, or indeed travel in almost any fashion, we are at the mercy of others' competence. There is a supposition that the pilot may have used the wrong runway to take off.
     
  6. EdSutton

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    And I have worked out of the Lexington/Bluegrass Airport when I drive a taxi for years, as well, plus flown out many times, in addition, including more than once on this type of airplane. You are correct, Joe. The pilot undoubtedly used the wrong runway, which I figured out upon seeing the map for the first time, as well as the overhead shots. The plane hit some 1500- 2000 feet or so beyond the end of runway 26, an unlit 3500' runway. The ground drops away somewhat, there, and so the plane never really got airborne at a speed of some 130-150 MPH. Pray for the families, as you mentioned. BTW, it has been confirmed that the plane was using the wrong runway.

    Ed
     
  7. El_Guero

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    That is what it looks like they started going down the wrong runway ... probably couldn't take off on that runway with a full passenger load - even if they had known they were on the wrong runway when they started.

    They got to about airborne - knew they were out of runway . . . ground droped away, so for a moment they thought they might make it and then the ground comes up again . . .

    The runways are so different . . . .

    Please pray for the families of the crew . . . it is difficult enough to lose your loved ones . . . but such a simple (tragic) error will make it more difficult . . . I would think.

    Terraserver runway map: http://terraserver-usa.com/image.aspx?s=13&lon=-84.605889&lat=38.0365&w=2
     
  8. Phillip

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    Very, very sad. Prayers will be coming from here.

    I remember a pilot landing on a taxi-way at the Atlanta International Airport in a large jet. It makes one wonder why he wasn't following his ILS (Instrument Landing System) all the way in. It will take you right to the touch-down point.

    Pilot errors are truly sad because they often occur because of extremely tired pilots having to work varied time shifts and more hours than they should. It happens less and less with the newer jets like the 757 because the computers automate the flight; but on puddle hoppers the pilot must be awake and very alert. Pray for the pilot's family too, they will take a lot of blame for this and just because it was a pilot error should not make people hate the family. SAD---SAD---SAD

    May the Lord be with the families and may many people from the flight be rejoicing in heaven today.
     
  9. El_Guero

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    This one doesn't make any sence . . .

    The runway lights were off - he should have asked the tower why the lights were off . . .
     
  10. PastorSBC1303

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    This is a very sad story.

    I have heard a lot about the pilot picking the wrong runway. But what about the air traffic controller? Shouldn't they have known as well that he was on the wrong runway?
     
  11. El_Guero

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    I have a feeling that by the time the control tower operator (ATC) thought, "That is strange and went for his binoculars" the plane was already committed or crashed.

    From the time the plane turned for take off, to the time of the crash was probably less than a minute three minutes absolutely tops.

    The tower (Air Traffic Controller) does not have a clear view of the taxiways . . .

    This is the worse design that I have ever seen. This is the only tower I have ever seen with an obstructed view of the taxi way . . . per the airport map - the building was added . . .

    I still think it was 'pilot error', but the ATC only had moments from the time he (she) saw the airplane taxi into view and it turned and took off . . . The tail light would have been visible most of the way - but, that light won't tell you immediately where the plane is heading and at nautical twilight . . . that is the worse time to figure out where the bird is headed . . .
     
  12. PastorSBC1303

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    Is it not the job of the ATC to give the pilot clearance for take off?
     
  13. EdSutton

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    El, the plane actually clipped the top of one or two trees. It may or may not have also gone through a fence at the end of the runway, as well, for I have not been to the end of the runway, although I have been parallel to it, and have seen it, but do not remember all the details. As I mentioned in a previous post, I have driven a taxicab out of that airport for many years. Had the trees or fence not gotten the plane, it would have probably been able to fly, much as a fighter can off an aircraft carrier, when the ground dropped away, as it does, but that is some speculation on my part. However, the "building" you refer to is a parking garage, the tower is on a knoll, and the ends of most of the runways, especially 4/22 would be easily visible to the tower. (The near end of 8/26 may not have been, as it is directly in front of a thrust and noise diversion barrier fence beside the automobile traffic circle. However, the plane's lights would have been.) But there was only one ATC on duty at the precise time, as it was shift change time, and a short distraction by other ground traffic could well have taken the controller's attention from the departing flight, after it had already been cleard for take-off on 4/22. There would have been no incoming commercial flights at that hour at LEX. The new taxiway routing and lanes, mostly 'striping', had been altered a bit, but that should have not caused a real problem, either, and in fact had not for a week, with a few hundred take-offs and landings. And the main runway had been lengthened some, as well, mostly on the west end of the airport. I do think there is some unwarranted speculation in your posts, as to the conditions, and suggest that I am probably much more familiar with LEX than most on the BB. Not bragging, by any stretch; it's just the way it is.

    Ed
     
  14. LeBuick

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    ATC should hace seen this far off as the landing plane turned for final approach. They do have radar in KY don't they?
     
  15. EdSutton

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    Buick, the plane was taking off, not landing! :rolleyes: And I just saw a news conference from NTSB. They have confirmed that the runway the plane attempted to depart on was unlit, and is in fact closed to all but daylight VFR general aviation traffic, and has in fact, not been lit for over two years, and they have eyewitness testimony from ramp workers at other airlines to the fact that the correct runway and taxiway were both properly lit up, the recorders show that Flight 5191 was given clearance for Runway 22, the crew acknowledged that it had gotten the clearance for 22, and then proceeded down 26. Had the flight have merely followed the taxiway to the begining of the runway, which at LEX is apparently SOP, this should not have happened, as the plane would not have made a hard right turn in the middle of an accelerating departure run. The paint markings were all new as were the lights and reflectors (only a week old, due to a just completed repaving job) and about as clear as possible. Even so, the plane almost made it, even on the short wrong runway, had become airborne, at 137 knots, but hit a tree or trees, and did not hit the fence, that I previously thought it might have collided with. It is almost certainly a case of pilot error; nothing has even been seriously suggested to the contrary; and I don't think will be, although it may take up to a year to 18 months for a final report.

    Ed
     
    #15 EdSutton, Aug 28, 2006
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  16. EdSutton

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    And yes, they do have radar in KY. In fact, I have been the unhappy beneficiary and recipient a few times of the same. :rolleyes: :mad:
    Although the jury is still out as to how many have shoes! :D :laugh:

    Ed
     
    #16 EdSutton, Aug 28, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 28, 2006
  17. El_Guero

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    Short answer - yes.

    From what I remember of 'routine' flights, the clearnce can be given as the plane taxis. Even if the plane had turned, stopped, and asked for final clearance - the visibility during nautical twilgiht would not have given the ATC an adequate view of the plane's lighting to differentiate the appropriate runway - I THINK.

    I have looked at the airport map I downloaded and it places the tower about 300 yards from the ends of the runways with a very large storage building between the tower and the ends of the runways . . .

    If the ATC was watchng the takeoff - he should have noticed that it was the wrong angle . . . or at least felt it was the wrong angle.

    But, that will come out later when they release the transcripts.

     
  18. El_Guero

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    Ed

    Mine was not speculation. An obstructed view of the runway is not a good safety feature. Nor is it a common safety feature.

    A commercial jet cannot take off like a fighter off of a carrier - That was your speculation. Commercial jets are not designed for taking anti-aircraft, high 'gees', or loosing an engine on take off. (yes the f-16 is a notorious exception). In fact most commercial and civilian multi's immediately go into emmergency decent on loosing an engine.

    These pilots were faced with a very bad decision (going down an unlit stip during nautical twilight was a decision). When they got close to the end of the runway - they commited to take off. Once they commited - they had made the wrong snap decision . . .

    Because they tried to take off, I doubt that they knew that they were on the wrong runway . . . until too late.

    I think that had they known they were on the wrong runway they would have tried to stop . . . my hunch . . . call it pilot instinct . . . but, when you are not on the runway you think you are on - you probably don't know the more important things like - obstacles at the end of the runway . . . power lines, trees, buildings, and anything else that can reach up and keep you from positive lift ...

    No call to tower . . . they did not call the tower . . . Yes, they had their hands full, but they did not call the tower.

    I do not think they knew they were on the wrong runway . . . until maybe the end of the runway. The voice recorder will tell us that.
     
  19. EdSutton

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    You are no doubt correct in this assumption, about an obstructed view. . However, I believe the vista of the tower at LEX (the pentagon shaped roof which is apparent on the map if you zoom in) is unobstructed of all three runways, (although it takes a stretch to call the short N/S strip, a runway, as it does not even show numbers, or didn't at the time the Terra-Serve iomagery was taken) save at the very 'end' of 'extended' runway 8/26, as I posted before. See my posts # 6, 13, & 15 for details. This is not 'speculation' on my part, either, but is based on my first-hand familiarity with LEX, having driven in and out of there a couple of thousand times or so, and flown in and out a handful of times, as well. On any other commercial airport in the world, I would be speculating.

    The tower is some 250 yards or so from the end of 8/26 as you surmised; the tower is more like 500 yards or maybe a little more from the end of 4/22. Remember, as I posted before, that runway has been extended, slightly, at the East End, and more significantly, at the west, as well. In fact, 4/22 cannot be extended to the 'East' any further without rebuilding Versailles Rd. (US-60) which is 6 lanes + turn lanes; Man O' War Boulevard - 4 lanes + turnlanes; and the entrance to Kennland Race Course. None of this is going to happen, so any future potential extension will have to be at the Western End. 8/26, the ill-fated runway, could be potentially extended another 100 to 1500' westward, but there are no plans to do so of which I am aware, and I would not have expected any, before this. You might see that change, now. We'll see. But I still doubt it, and it could even generate a false sense of security.

    As to the "storage building" you mentioned, there is no such thing. What you see on the imagery is a covered parking garage. It was added long after the current tower was erected, to be sure, but again, does not 'interfere' (although automobile or pedestrian movement inside it could potentially distract someone, I guess) with the vista of the tower occupants, except (with the added 'noise and thrust fence/barrier', that does NOT show clearly on the Terra-Serve) at the very end of 4/22, alongside the traffic circle, and the taxiways right beside the fence, for small planes, as I also mentioned before.


    Mostly, you are correct here, in your conclusions. I was not speculating, per se, on a carrier, lift-off, but rather was suggesting what actually did happen. A continuation of a flat level surface [especially if it was grooved or rowed sand (like a runaway truck escape ramp), which would have resulted in immediate deceleration] would have allowed the pilots to bring the plane to a halt, in some way, (I would think) as it was just nearing 'rotating' status. And it has been announced/confirmed (by NTSB) that the plane did not lose an engine, rather that they were working properly. There was mention in the cockpit, when accelerating down the runway, that the lights were off, again, per NTSB. You are correct, in most of the rest of what you spoke, as far as I can tell.

    Ed
     
    #19 EdSutton, Aug 29, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 29, 2006
  20. El_Guero

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    Ed

    Take a deep breath and relax - major crashes are extremely stressful for those closest to the incident.

    I will be praying for you and your community. I grew up with crashes. A crash is an eerie feeling.

    Many people in your community will feel stress from the crash for days, weeks, and in some ways maybe even months - especially if they lost loved ones on this red-eye.
     

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