Re: 737: Take-off without flaps?

Date:         04 Jan 97 03:55:51 
From: (John M. Hunt)
Organization: Internet Partners of America
References:   1
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"Mark E. Ingram" <> wrote:

>On 12 Dec 1996, Art Intemann wrote:
>> Andrew Goldfinger wrote:
>> >
>> > So -- if you are in a commercial jet and arrive at the runway with the
>> > flaps not deployed, what should you do?  Call for the flight attendent as
>> > urgently as you can, or sit back and do nothing?
>> As soon as the throttles are advanced for takeoff, a warning horn
>> will alert the crew if the flaps are not in a takeoff position.
>I think that the whole point of this thread, originally, was that had
>there been an alert flap-watcher on the Northwest MD-80 in Detroit (DTW),
>or on the Delta B-727 in Dallas (DFW), a lot of lives might have been
>In both cases, the takeoff warning systems failed to do their jobs.

In considering this thread two thoughts have come to mind:

1)  Why would it not be possible to require a designated flight
attendant to visually check flap and slats position?  This certainly
is an extremely minor and unobjectionable task.  Obviously union
opportunism could interpret this requirement as an excuse for pay
increase, but I thought that kind of smokestack industry thinking was
fairly rare nowadays, at least in the US.

2)  I would think it would be almost beyond the realm of possibility
for a passenger to establish communication with a flight attendant,
given the very limited time available and the semi-discipline imposed
on passengers during taxi and takeoff procedures.  Additionally, I
would think the first thought that would occur to a flight attendant
in the limited time available that this is some sort of nut whose
activities (even if limited to voice communications) represent a
potential threat to the aircraft.

3)  I find it very, very unlikely that it would even occur to a
flight attendant that a passenger (unless wearing an Airline or
military flight uniform) could possibly have any understanding
whatsoever of aircraft, flight; etc.

John M. Hunt