Sunday, October 11, 2009

More fuel issues

While sitting standby I grabbed dinner at 5:10PM. At 5:19PM I was called for a 5:40PM departure. Not gonna happen.

I finished eating my dinner and then headed over to the plane. I had all my bags with me.

I stopped by the gate and told the gate agent who I was and where I was going. She told me I was the last to arrive. Eh.

This flight was originally to be flown by a 50 seater, for some reason it was upgraded to a 70 seater. Hmmm.

The Captain was also sitting airport standby. Really nice guy, a little quiet but a great Captain.

After the preflight I began setting up the plane. The first issue that came up was there was no PDC (Pre Departure Clearance) set up for the flight. Odd. I called clearance "the old fashioned way". Done. Next issue was our release. It had the right tail number, but the wrong crew. Captain left to take care of it. Next issue was fuel. We had 8100 on board. That was min takeoff. I called for fuel. It took three calls.

We pushed out at 6:10PM with 44 passengers. Thirty minutes late. His leg.

Climbing thru FL230 a FUEL CH 1 FAIL status message popped up. I dug through my flight manual to see what action needed to be taken. In the action required. Good. Leveling off at FL320 another message popped up AUTO XFLOW INHIBIT. This was really odd. This message is normally only displayed while we are getting fuel. I opened the flight manual again. This time there was nothing listed. That status message isn't listed in my manual. Hmmm. Checked another manual...nothing. Hmmm. The Captain and I discussed the issue. All indications were normal. The fuel levels were almost perfectly level. Being just 25 minutes out we would just monitor the situation.

Weather at the out station was reported as 8SM, overcast 400, winds 150/10 landing runway 17. Not bad.

There was a general aviation plane shooting practice approaches to runway 35. For whatever reason the approach controller vectored us way our and slowed us way down. While crawling toward the airport at 170 knots new special weather came out. Now 1 1/2 SM vis and overcast 400. Temperature 07 dew point 06. Hmmm.

The Captain briefed the approach. I made the required calls and began looking for the runway or runway lights. At 800 feet...nothing. 600 feet nothing. I sit up straighter. Eyes hoping to see the approach lights. 400 feet NOTHING. Not good. I sit up further. "Approaching Minimums" is announced by the GPWS. Nothing. Finally just under 300 feet I call "Approach lights in sight, 12 o'clock, continue". The next moment I called the runway in sight.

After landing I noticed both previous status messages were gone. Problem solved.

We did a quick 20 minute turn. With 54 passengers (upgraded for 4 passengers?!?!?!). Winds were still 150/10. The tower offered up runway 8 which meant a shorter taxi. While the taxi was shorter the time was not. The flight attendant briefing took the same amount of time as it would have taken to taxi to runway 17.

The takeoff and flight were normal. Assigned runway 10 ILS. Low clouds and heavy rain. I briefed the approach. The Captain called the runway in site at 900 feet. I clicked the autopilot off at 300 feet. At 100 feet it was all looking perfect. Slight crosswind. I began pulling power at 50 feet. A sudden gust ballooned the plane at 30 feet. I quickly idled both engines as I was quickly eating up the runway. Just about 500 feet short of the end of the touchdown zone the plane kissed the runway. I got lucky.

I have reserve at home tomorrow morning at 6AM. If I stay home I will finish up a write up about the crappy day I had Saturday. Saturday involved an ADG failure, Fuel Issue, Fire trucks, Hazmat and more. Lots of photos. Hopefully will finish it up tomorrow.

1 comment:

  1. Looking forward to hearing about the fire trucks!


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