2 Scary Air France Incidents – Pilot Errors in Both Cases?

There were two Air France incidents that occurred back at the end of May / early June, one involving a B777-200 passenger jet and one with a B777-200 freighter. I’ve been waiting to post about these until additional information was released, however after more than a month, there’s been no further updates…here’s what we know so far:

The May incident saw the B777 passenger flight nearly collide with Mount Cameroon, an active Volcano in Africa. Mount Cameroon is 13,400 feet tall at its highest point and is located about 50 miles northwest of Douala.

As per CNN, the Air France jet was flying at 9,000 ft. when the Boeing 777’s ground proximity warning system triggered an alarm alerting the pilots that they could crash into something. The pilots responded to the warning, climbed to 13,000 ft., and cleared the volcano. 

According to Air France:

“The Boeing 777-200 was flying at cruising altitude between Malabo and Douala in stormy conditions.”  “The route they took to avoid the storm took their trajectory close to Mount Cameroon.” “Several precautionary measures have been taken” including assigning “the crew of the flight to pedagogical, managerial and medical support.”

You can read about the full details of the incident at the Aviation Herald.

The freighter incident occurred at the very beginning of June on a flight from Paris (CDG) to Mexico City (MEX). As per the Aviation Herald:

The crew detected the aircraft wasn’t accelerating quickly enough upon takeoff and firewalled the engines. The aircraft took off without further incident, the crew discovered their takeoff weight had been programmed 100 tons below actual takeoff weight resulting in incorrect takeoff power and reference speed computations…

As per Air France “Air France confirms that a data insertion error on take-off of cargo flight AF6724 operated by a Boeing 777 from Paris-Charles de Gaulle to Mexico on 22 May 2015 led to insufficient acceleration at the beginning of take-off. The crew, who noticed this slow acceleration, immediately reacted by applying full thrust. The aircraft took off normally and the flight continued to its destination. The crew spontaneously declared this event by ASR (Air Safety Report) and informed their superiors.”

Air France

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