Thursday, March 10, 2011

Boeing 737 pilot finds reverse but not the brakes

A little reverse engineering at Hoedspruit Air Force Base
In South Africa

737-200 trying to reverse park

According to sources, the aircraft, a venerable and tough Boeing 737-200, landed at AFB Hoedspruit at night. Now Hoedspruit, which is really a fighter base with long runways, is out in the boonies, so to speak, and doesn’t have much in the way of arc lighting. Anyway, the aircraft allegedly turned onto the wrong taxiway which came to a dead end. Unable to continue forwards, the crew appear to have attempted to turn the aircraft using reverse thrust, during which manoeuvre the main undercarriage left the tar and the aircraft rolled backwards down an embankment.

The engines were allegedly spooled-up to full thrust in an effort to power the aircraft out of its predicament. Both engines ingested various quantities of dirt, grass, stones and other debris, ruining both of them. As the cost of replacing the engines is more than the aircraft is worth, not to mention the damage incurred to the other parts of the airframe, it’s unlikely this particular 737 will ever fly again.

No-one was hurt and there were no passengers aboard at the time.

Anybody know where the brakes are?