Pakistan International Airlines flight 8303: updates
Was the RAT (Ram Air Turbine) in an extended position due to the loss of the two engines?
Last Friday on May 22 a plane of the PIA company (Pakistan International Airlines) an Airbus A-320/200 crashed near runway 25R at Karachi, the international airport in Pakistan. From the database it is specified that it is an A-320/214 aircraft powered by CFM 56 engines. Flight PIA 8303 crashed when approaching the airport during landing; the airline said there were 91 passengers on board and eight crewmembers.
The flight had left Lahore at 1:05pm local time with expected arrival in Karachi at 2:45pm local time, then after about an hour and a half; the aircraft was authorized to approach runway 25L; at 2:35pm local the plane completed a go-around (a missed landing) and another approach was requested always for runway 25L; the air traffic controller assigned nose 110 and a climb to 3000 ft.
From the audio statements it seems that they were also having difficulty reaching the assigned altitude by reporting that they had lost an engine (or lost both engines); it is not yet clear from the audio if this was a single engine failure or loss of both as reported by the pilot in the "Mayday" message. The controller authorized the aircraft to land on both runways 25L or R (thus allowing a choice for easy maneuvering if necessary). Unfortunately, the aircraft crashed in a residential area about 1360 meters from the runway 25R head. The airplane was destroyed in a major fire.
From a first analysis, the weather at the time of the event was good; from some eyewitness accounts the plane hit the engines on the runway without the undercarriage being in an extended position (obviously this must be confirmed). From an initial ATC audio analysis it seems that the warning sound was heard that the carriage was not in the appropriate position; in addition, a photo shows that the RAT (Ram Air Turbine) was in an extended position. As is known, the RAT automatically extends in the event that both the AC1 and AC2 bar are lost; in other words, if both engines and both engine generators are lost, the RAT will automatically extend. To understand the event objectively and completely, the final investigation by the competent authorities must be awaited.
On the subject see also AVIONEWS.
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