Royal Aeronautical Society interview with Captain David Evans of Qantas

On 11-12-2010, in Safety is no accident, by phil

Captain David Evans and Captain Harry Wubben

Captain Evans was the Senior Check Captain on the Qantas A380 during the incident in Singapore. He was interviewed by the RAeS on the 6th December.

In the interview he describes how the crew reacted to the uncontained engine failure and discusses the decisions the crew had to make. In particular, he considers that the most serious part of the whole incident was the time spent on the runway after they had stopped and were unable to shut down the No 1 engine. He also says that later they tried to recreate the whole incident in the simulator but couldn’t! Which only goes to show that, however good the simulator training, it is never quite like the real thing.

Finally near the end the of the interview he says that common sense and airmanship took over, they couldn’t blindly follow the ECAM messages.

He also says about the A380; “Well I think the Airbus A380 – it’s a testament to the aircraft that we managed to get the aeroplane successfully on to the ground. The fly-by-wire system, albeit with the damage we were in an alternate law, it still was very flyable. Now comparing that to other types I have flown I am sure that Boeing types would have been equally flyable, but they would have been a lot more difficult, I’m sure.”

A fine testament to modern design standards.

Read the full interview here.

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  1. Phil Hogge says:

    Article from ‘The Australian’ newspaper:-

    QF32 crew still fans of Airbus A380
    • Steve Creedy, Aviation Writer
    • From: The Australian
    • December 20, 2010 12:00AM
    THE equivalent of small bomb exploding under the wing of their plane has not dampened the enthusiasm of the crew of QF32 for the Airbus A380.

    Captain Richard de Crespigny and first officer Matt Hicks agreed with the assessment by European plane-maker Airbus that the superjumbo ably handled the crisis caused by the spectacular failure of one of its Rolls Royce Trent 900 engines.

    They said they were never in fear of their safety and always confident the giant jet would get them home as Mr Hicks methodically worked his way through checklist after checklist.

    Capt. De Crespigny said this was the reason the pilots issued a PAN alert, one step below a full emergency, and did not feel the need to upgrade it to a Mayday, despite the failed engine, fuel leaks and substantial damage to hydraulic, fuel, electrical and flight control systems.
    Related Coverage

    He said the A380 was an extremely fault-tolerant aircraft that remained flyable despite the punishment it took.
    “The level of redundancy and fail-safes on this aircraft is more than I’ve experienced on any other aircraft and I’ve been flying Boeings for 17 years,” Capt. De Crespigny said. “There are so many degradation modes, and we used some of them, that this aircraft has been proven to be indestructible.”

    The Qantas captain also believes Trent 900 will prove to be a good engine.

    “This is the first turbine failure of a Rolls-Royce three-spool engine ever and they’ve been flying 200 million engines hours,” he said, adding the shutdown rate for engines in 1989 was six every 100,000 flying hours and this had now improved to 0.3 every 100,000 hours.

    “My respect for the A380, the certifiers and Airbus has increased as a result of this incident; and I feel sorry for Rolls Royce who have an unquestionable reputation for being one of the world’s best engine makers with a fantastic reliability record.”

  2. [...] of HOW these guys dealt with this extremely hazardous and unprecedented situation. It is here: Roger-Wilco | Royal Aeronautical Society interview with Captain David Evans of Qantas I am in awe of the way they calmly and successfully did their jobs that day. I admire their [...]

  3. [...] on the topic of the engine failure and the crew's subsequent handling of it. Part of the article Roger-Wilco | Royal Aeronautical Society interview with Captain David Evans of Qantas (my bolding) states: [...]

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