Re: hydraulic failure

From:         kls@ohare.Chicago.COM (Karl Swartz)
Organization: Chicago Software Works
Date:         23 Mar 93 00:24:56 PST
References:   1 2
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>>	January 5, 1992, I was flying back to Honolulu from LAX (after missing
>>seeing an annular solar eclipse at sunset because of clouds) on Delta
>>flight 123 (don't know what kind of jet it was!).

According to an OAG from a couple of months later that would have been
a Lockheed L-1011, aka TriStar.  (BTW, I was down in LA for that same
eclipse, with similar results.  SFO-LAX is a lot shorter and cheaper,

>Large transport aircraft typically have 3-4 hydraulic systems

Four if it was indeed an L-1011.

>As for cranking down the landing gear, that's a simple, straightforward
>procedure, albeit an uncommon one.

Is is visually checking the locking of the gear, yet confusion over
this procedure ultimately led to the crash of United's DC-8-61 N8082U
at Portland, Oregon on 28 Dec 1978.  Similar problems had earlier led
to the loss of an Eastern L-1011 (N310EA) at Miami on 29 Dec 1972.

>Inflight malfunctions such as this one are relatively rare, but they
>do happen from time to time.  And since the passengers were never in any 
>danger, the incident wasn't newsworthy.

Fortunately Delta's run of bad luck of a few years ago, and the
attendant publicity, has subsided.  I remember when a Delta flight
having a flat tire on landing (not at all uncommon) would make the
national news.

>Your plane probably could've made it all the way without further
>incident, but it's standard procedure (and common sense) to land as
>soon as possible when an inflight failure occurs, simply as a precaution.

Of course being over a vast amount of water in this case was a further
encouragement since there aren't any alternatives between LAX and the
Hawaiian islands.  Another minor consideration in this case might have
been that LAX is a major base for Delta, and thus an easier place to
perform major repairs if required, whereas Hawaii is, I suspect, some-
what less well equipped.

Karl Swartz	|INet		
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