It was a normal day in London. The pilots and the passenger had woken up very early in the morning to get ready for the flight to Larnaca, Cyprus from London, England. During the flight the crew saw that the Boeing 737’s door seals had frozen. There were also strange noises coming from the right aft service door. They did what they were supposed to so; they reported it and requested a full inspection of the door. There came a full inspection as was requested. The inspection was carried out by a ground engineer who worked at Larnaca Airport. The engineer then performed a pressurization leak check. He did not fly the plane or start the engines. To do a pressurization leak check you need to switch the pressurization system to ‘manual’. He also did that. He did not however switch the system back ‘to automatic’. The ground engineer did not find any abnormalities so he just approved the plane. The Boeing went into service. A new crew came. The new crew did the pre-flight procedure, the after-start check, and the after take-off check. During all of these procedures and checks neither of the pilots saw that the small button was switched to ‘manual’. The pressurization system was still switched to ‘manual when the plane took off heading towards Athens International Airport at nine o’clock. The aft outflow valve was left partially open. As the airplane climbed the air became thinner and thinner. At 12,040 feet the cabin altitude alarm sounded because the air pressure was so low. Someway the crew made the mistake of thinking that the alarm was from the take-off configuration warning. Which is strange because that alarm can only sound when the plane is on the ground. The plane was still climbing. It had an altitude of 18,000 feet. At that point the oxygen masks in the passenger cabin automatically deployed. Then the pilots contacted the same ground engineer that that switched the pressurization system to ‘manual’. The pilots reported seeing issues like
“the take-off configuration warning on” and “cooling equipment normal and alternate off line”. The ground engineer responded to that by asking: “Can you confirm that the pressurization panel is set to AUTO?”
The captain was experiencing the onset of hypoxia’s initial and disregarded the question and instead asked in reply, “Where are my equipment cooling circuit breakers?”. Hypoxia is a condition in which the body does not get enough oxygen. It dramatically affects performance. A person who gets hypoxia will after a couple of minutes will lose consciousness and a little bit after that that person will eventually pass away. Hypoxia often occurs at high altitudes. That is why on high mountains people need oxygen tanks.
After that there was no communication with the aircraft anymore.
The pilots did not know that that was the last contact they would make with anyone outside the plane. After a couple of minutes the pilots became unconscious and the plane kept climbing to flight level 340 about the same as 34,000 feet. The plane remained in the holding pattern under the control of the autopilot for the next 70 minutes until its fuel ran out. Before its fuel ran out the air traffic control tried to make contact, but was unable to actually do so. The air traffic control got so worried that they called two F-16 fighter aircraft from The Hellenic Air Force to come. The Hellenic Air force belongs to Greece. The reason that the Hellenic Air Forces were activated and not the forces from Cyprus for example was that the airplane was flying in greek airspace.
They intercepted the passenger jet and observed that the first officer was slumped motionless at the controls and the captain’s seat was empty. They also reported that oxygen masks were dangling in the passenger cabin.
Seven minutes later flight attendant Andreas Prodromou entered the cockpit and sat down in the captain’s seat, having remained conscious by using a portable oxygen supply. Prodromou held a UK Commercial Pilot Licence,but was not qualified to fly the Boeing 737. Crash investigators concluded that Prodromou’s experience was insufficient for him to be able to gain control of the aircraft under the circumstances. Prodromou waved at the F16s very briefly, but almost as soon as he entered the cockpit, the left engine turned off due to fuel exhaustion and the plane left the holding pattern and started to descend. Ten minutes after the loss of power from the left engine, the right engine also turned off and five minutes after that the aircraft crashed into hills near Grammatiko, 40 km (about 25 mi) from Athens, killing all 121 passengers and crew on board. The young flight attendant had not succeeded to save the plane and the people aboard.
The crew that flew from London requested that inspection because they were worried about the potential safety consequences of that. If they did not request the inspection, then probably the next crew and passengers would not crash and die as a result of it.
The crash left a legacy. The training of the pilots became more elaborate in what to do in such situation and there came a digital procedure so that the pilots do not overlook anything.
I think that it is strange that the pilots failed to notice that the pressurization system was on ‘manual’ because ‘turn the pressurization to ‘auto’ was on all three lists. I also think its strange that although the pilots had oxygen masks they were suffering of hypoxia.
You can read about the crash on Wikipedia here.
You can read about the crash on The Guardian here.
When the weather is hot then you can just sit in your house, go to the beach or go sunbathing in your garden. Many people who go sunbathing in their gardens do it mainly because their garden is their own private place. What can go wrong in a warm day when you are sunbathing in your own private place? That is probably what the sunbathing man in London asked himself when he was in his garden in July, 2019.
It was a sunny, hot day in London and someone was enjoying the sun and having a good time, at least until someone fell from the sky one meter next to him. What seemed to be a nice day probably resulted in a trauma for the sunbathing man. The neighbor of the probably traumatized sunbathing man reported that he was downstairs and heard a loud sound. He went upstairs, drew the curtains and he saw someone lying on the ground with ‘all his clothes on and everything’. The neighbor also reported that his head was in a bad way and that there was blood on the walls. The neighbor went outside and immediately after he came out, his bloody neighbor also came out shaking. Now I’m pretty sure that he actually did get traumatized. Soon after the accident the body was taken away leaving only a trauma and a broken sidewalk to the sunbathing man.
After some research it was found that the man was a stowaway trying to get to london from Nairobi Airport, Kenya. He apparently wanted to go to London so much that he was ready to sit in the small space in the landing gear. The good news is that he did succeed to reach London like he wanted to and the bad bad news is that he did not survive it. He was a little bit prepared; he had brought water, food and a blanket. The blanket was apparently not warm enough because he was also frozen. Outside the plane temperatures can drop to minus 51 degrees centigrade. Assuming the plane was beginning its descent, the altitude he fell from was about 30,000 feet. It took him more than two minutes to fall to the ground. The man from Kenya fell on a sideway made of stone. The sideway made of concrete shattered to a lot of pieces. The neighbor of the sunbathing man said that if the landing gear was opened two seconds later, then the body would have fallen on a big crowd of people. If the pilots had extended the wheels of the airplane two seconds later and the body would have fallen on o huge crowd, then there would be a couple of fatalities because of the crash and there would be a lot of panic. Panic in these kinds of situations tends to be way more lethal.
Heathrow Airport has responded and it said that this happens ‘once in the five years’. That means each five years a stowaway falls from the landing gear. And that is considered normal?
The last time someone fell from a Heathrow flight from a landing gear was in 2012 that person had been a stowaway too.
However new evidence suggests that the man who fell from the landing gear was not a stowaway after all. After a further investigation the investigators came to the conclusion that the dead man was very likely an airport worker working in Nairobi Airport. The reason the investigators said this was that that dead person had access to strictly restricted and regulated airport areas. Or he was a very smart stowaway knowing how to get access to such areas or he was an airport worker doing his job. I think that the first one is likelier because if he had been that smart then he would have done something better against the cold temperatures. If he had been a airport worker which I consider very much likelier, then the first question I would ask is why?
If he had been an airport worker and had access to such restricted areas and working there, how could he not have known that it will get so cold if he was so specialized?
Here you can read an article on a news website.
Every animal does it and some more than others. When a human gets 75 years old, then that human will have slept about 25 years of his or her life. Sleep does not only refresh, it also has a lot of vital uses. Too less sleep on the long term demolishes your immune system, it doubles your risk of of cancer and plays a key role in wether you will get Alzheimer’s disease or not. In the short term it decreases concentration, attention and the ability to make good decisions fast. Two thirds of the adults in well-developed nation have less than 8 hours of sleep a day, the recommended amount. What fatigue means for a employee could differentiate substantially. Fatigue for a pilot who flies everyday with a full schedule is often more dangerous than it is for a painter who paints a painting. Pilot fatigue is the cause of 4 to 8 percent of all crashes. Pilot fatigue happens when the pilot is simply tired. The primary causes of pilot fatigue are a too full schedule and a sleepless night. A scenario could be that the plane’s engines stop. What should the pilot do? How can that pilot make a decision in that life and death situation when the pilot can barely keep his or her eyes open? Enough about jobs let’s talk about genetics. There is a small group of people from the same gene pool that can function normally like any other healthy person with just 7 hours of sleep daily. More people have a gene that causes them to need more than 8 hours of sleep daily than the other gene. Someone who needs more than 8 hours of sleep daily to function properly will have a really hard time being a pilot as the working hours of a pilot can reach a staggering 14 hours a day. Sleep is underestimated and so are the dangers caused by having a too small portion of it. I think that sleep needs to be prioritized by the employers or if necessary by the government.
Over a century ago in the December of 1903, the first powered airplane took off. It was made by Wilbur and Orville Wright. Also known as the Wright brothers. The first airplane was named ‘kitty hawk’ by the Wright brothers and it did not look like any modern airplane made by Boeing or Airbus nowadays. It had a top speed of 48 kilometers per hour, a range of 300 meters and a carrying capacity of one passenger. In comparison the Boeing 777X has a top speed of over 1000 kilometers per hour, a range of over 16,000,000 meters and a carrying capacity of 365 passengers. It flies close to the speed of sound, but if it flies normally then it can not break the speed of sound. The first plane to go the speed of sound was the Bell x-1 manufactured by Bell. That was in 1946. The first commercial plane to break the sound barrier was the Concorde, but what the manufacturers did not know was that it was also the last one. Sixteen Concordes were build in total, but only 14 of them actually came in to service for the airlines Air France and British Airways, the manufacturers of the Concorde. At the time of the Concorde it was something really special and it still is. The Concorde yielded British Airways a revenue of 1.75 billion Pounds. The cost were 1 billion Pounds. That’s a 750 million Pounds profit only for British Airways. The profits were massive. Why did the Concorde end? Why were all the flights canceled? The reason is ‘just’ one crash of a Concorde in France. The first commercial supersonic aircraft came to an end because of Air France Flight 4590.
Continue reading “The crash that put a stop to the first supersonic commercially plane”
Today it became officially illegal to cycle when you are messaging if you live in The Netherlands.
Smartphones are not new, they are 25 years old and the safety threat isn’t either. I think that it is a little bit strange that it took 25 years before the government actually did something against it. Children under twelve get a warning whereas adults risk a fine of over a hundred U.S.D.
In Enschede, The Netherlands a medical helicopter changed its route because of a drone. The medical helicopter with someone in a life threatening situation was flying to the local hospital when suddenly a large drone appeared out of nowhere. The drone was flying in a drone prohibited area around the hospital. The helicopter did not collide with the drone, but an accident was very close. In The Netherlands there are a lof of other areas where flying a drone is not legal like near airports, above highways and certain natural parks. To make sure this does not happen again and no people die because they did not receive medical attention on time, the government could do several things. Here are some examples of what the government can do to prevent drones from getting any near to (medical) helicopters: 1 the government can give longer prison sentences to the ones who neglect the law and thus safety. 2 the government could install systems on the medical helicopter which would demolish the GPS of the drone when the drone gets let’s say in a radius of 15 meters near the helicopter. A similar system is used in the airplanes of presidents, but the difference is that the system defends against missiles. So why not use a anti drone system to protect the people who are extra vulnerable?
Many people nowadays ride cars—in all countries and on all continents. This of course brings some hazards with them, but I am not going to talk about car accidents, but about sticking your head out of a window of a car. To understand the magnitude of this problem we must consider how many times this happens.
Unfortunately people doing this is not uncommon, many people do it, some more than others. The reason why people do this can vary: it could be to get some fresh air, but it also could be to see the landscape better for example. But not only humans do it, if you ever saw the program of Scooby-Doo then you have probably seen the dog sticking his head out of the minivan, so animals can do it as well. So it is rather encouraged than discouraged in popular television series—even for children. You can do it many times, at least until you hit a lamppost and die. Some people would think that that would not happen. It does happen, however the chance is very small, very small, but not neglible. A man died exactly that way, by hitting his head to a lamppost during a car ride. Every risk small or big is too much. The remedy for this kind of safety fail is being more cautious and not doing that—for your own safety.
Each year billions of passengers from all over the world use the airplane. That number only seems to increase in the future. There are high safety standards such as good training and a certificate for your airline needed before you can fly an airplane. Such standards do not prevent airplanes from getting exposed to an excess of risks. If there are risks, then crashes in general are inevitable disregarding the size of the risk.
And because there is an alternating amount of risk the crashes decrease as well. Because of the alternation in the crashes, some periods are safer to fly in than others. The difference between periods can be negligible, but also great. For example in the year 2017, 19 people died in airplane crashes, but in 2018, 523 people died in crashes.
Why did this happen? The planes in 2017 had been less developed, had older updates and had less experienced crew than the society in 2018, then why did this number of deaths rise at all and why that much in just a year? The high death toll was caused by the high number of accidents, now we know how, but not why. To answer why we must search deeper. The cause of the crashes were mostly humanitarian. It is remarkable that the death toll increased that much— in just a year. The leading causes are that the people are being less and less cautious. Safety depends for a great part on wether you are paying attention or not. This is not only true for aircrafts, but it is also true for about every other thing.
About 21 percent of the deaths caused by traffic accidents on the USA are caused by the driver lacking attention to the road. If you want to drive safe, then giving more attention to the road is more effective than buying another car with one more airbag. I think that people should be more aware of the fact that by giving more attention to safety, they improve safety more than they would by buying a similar, but (slightly) safer product.
The Boeing 737 Max is the successful successor of the Boeing 737, at least until 2019. The Boeing 737 Max has 15 more seats than the 737 version and it consumes less fuel too.
Continue reading “Is the Boeing 737 Max really unsafe?”
It was a nice day in Montreal, Quebec, Canada and the children were very eager to watch the new Pokemon film, Detective Pikachu. When the film started, the projector showed the bloody horror film La Llorana instead of the funny and especially child friendly film Detective Pikachu. The once eager children were now crying—and thats understandable because the Pikachu film is rated for children older than 3 years old, while the horror film is rated all the way from 12+ to 18+, depending on the country you live in. The average is around 15+, but in Montreal the rating is surprisingly low—only 13+. The employees of the cinema were too late to prevent the children from a traumatic experience. Although the employees stopped the film midway and moved the visitors to another room, the problem was surely not solved that way. This situation could have been prevented by double checking the film and controlling the age of the customers at the door of the room where the movie is played. In my point of view, I think that these kind of situations only could happen as a cause of too little attention of the cinema’s crew and it can be controlled better by giving such cinemas a big fine.
It was January the 24th, 1961 in Goldsboro, North Carolina. Above the inhabitants of Goldsboro a plane was flying that was carrying two atomic bombs. Suddenly the plane broke in the sky. The pilot ordered his crew to eject at 2,700 meters. Some did manage to escape the doomed plane, but some did not. Three people died in the end. Two died as a cause of not being able to eject and the other one did not survive the ejection. The warheads however did not leave the airplane, at least not until impact. The one bomb that was found had 4 safety switches and only one was off. If that one had not been off, it would have detonated for sure. What happened with the other one? Nobody knows because it was never found again. I think we can all agree upon the fact that this situation could have ended in a disaster. This potential disaster could have been prevented in multiple ways, here are some of them: option 1: making sure all the detonators of the warhead are on the safe mode and/or option 2: transporting the detonators separately in order to make sure that they do not explode.
Nowadays many people are connected to the internet and that number only seems to increase with time. More people are connected. The world is getting smaller. It may sound nice and positive, but it has some real dark sides. I am not talking about the dark web, but the health issues involved in connecting people like that. In the developed nations, people having 3 or 4G is not uncommon because nearly everybody has it. Next year 5G is scheduled too. These networks work with radio waves. 4G works with lower frequencies, but 5G uses very high frequencies too. The upside of using many bandwidths, is that you are able to send a great deal of information to anyone on earth very fast, of course if that person is connected to the network ass well. Currently, we are exposed to 100,000,000 times as much radio waves as our ancestors were—and that is not a typo.
So, okay we are exposed to a hundred million times the amount of radio waves as our ancestors were, but is really harmful? Some scientists say no, but it is proven that this kind of radio wave does heat up objects, like your burrito in your microwave, but also bodily tissues. High amounts of this wave cause damage to your organs—and could be fatal, but it is not proven that low amounts of radio waves are unhealthy, although it is certainly not healthy. 5G has many bandwidths and produces very much radio waves. So will 5G simulate a microwave the size of the earth? There is a rumor that testing 5G in the Netherlands killed a couple of hundred birds. I do not know if it’s true, but if it is then it should not be completely harmless to humans. So in conclusion, these technologies should be tested elaborately and should certainly not be underestimated.
Have you ever thought what safety is? What it entails? What it’s worth? Many people do not think about this, but that does not mean that it is not important to them on the contrary they think it is the most usual subject in the world. Nowadays we do not care about being safe, but just about feeling safe. Although the first one is the most logical one, it is not how we are together. We are not logical beings we are emotional ones. If course if you ask someone what that person finds more important they will certainly say that being safe is more important, but these words are based on logic. That is not how we are together.
Continue reading “Feeling safe vs being safe”
A cameraman in Saudi-Arabia ignited a full container of gunpowder by throwing a cigarette in it during a wedding mistaking it for a bin. The bin exploded but no one was seriously injured. The true reason why this happened is that he thought the container full of gunpowder looked a lot like a bin. Accidents happen unless you are prepared. You really cannot be a hundred percent prepared, but you can be very prepared. The wedding was not as you would’ve guessed by now. The problem could have been prevented by making a sign with the text: Dangerous; gunpowder for example. Or you could solve it by just not bringing gunpowder because I do not think gun powder has any use in a wedding.
“ji32k7au4a83” may sound like a long, difficult and strong password, but in reality it’s not. So what is a strong password? Is it safer if it is longer? Not necessarily because it may be longer, but it may be guessed earlier than a short password.
Continue reading “Why “ji32k7au4a83” as password is just as weak as “password””