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Entries in Airbus (2)

Thursday
Sep062012

NTSB Suggests Wingtip Cameras on Planes

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The National Transportation Safety Board is suggesting that large aircraft be equipped with external cameras to give pilots a better view of a plane's wingtips as they travel along the taxiway -- and possibly cut down on ground crashes.

On planes such as the Boeing 747 and the giant Airbus A380, the safety board said, pilots can't see the wingtips from the cockpit unless they open the side window and stick out their heads.

Kevin Hiatt, a former commercial pilot and the chief operating officer of the Flight Safety Foundation, agreed that cameras might be a help.

"Physically, visually, you can't see those wingtips," he said. "If they [pilots] get into a tight situation, they might be able to use that reference of that camera in the cockpit to take a look at the wingtip."

In May, the wingtip of a Boeing 747-400 cargo plane hit the tail of an American Eagle flight as it taxied at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport. No injuries were reported and the collision remains under investigation.

Outside cameras are standard on the Airbus A380 and A340-600 but are optional on the A330 models and A340-500. The cameras, however, primarily help the pilots see landing gears, not look at the wingtips.

Boeing told ABC News Thursday that it also has one plane with external cameras -- the 777-300 -- but not for wingtips.

While the safety board can make recommendations, it is up to the Federal Aviation Administration to decide whether to move forward on recommendations and require new safety equipment.

The NTSB said that the camera systems should be placed on new airplanes as well as those currently being flown.

Hiatt said that a sensor, like those in some cars, might work better. The sensor would set off a noise, like a beep, when the wingtip got too close to something.

"It would yet be one more thing that might bark at us to say 'Hey, watch out,' but in this particular case versus hitting something, I wouldn't mind that," he said.

Pilots that ABC News spoke with Thursday, however, said they did not like the camera suggestion.

Although they did not want to be quoted, they raised concerns about unintended consequences and distraction in the cockpit. Their biggest worry was that pilots would be tempted to keep an eye on the camera view, rather than scanning the tarmac in front of them.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Saturday
Jul302011

Planes Collide on Ground in Chicago

Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images(CHICAGO) -- A pair of Delta planes made contact while on the ground at O'Hare Airport in Chicago Friday evening, but the collision caused no injuries, an airport official said.

Delta confirmed two planes collided to ABC News affiliate KSTP of Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minn. -- the destination of one of the flights.

That plane, Flight 2207, an Airbus 319, collided with an MD80 bound for Atlanta as it pushed back from the gate in Chicago just before 8 p.m. CT, Delta said. A passenger on board the Minnesota-bound plane told KSTP it was struck on the right wing.

Damage to the plane was being assessed, Delta told KSTP.

Passengers from Flight 2207 and Flight 1777, the Atlanta-bound plane, were removed from the planes as Delta tried to accommodate them on other flights, ABC News Chicago affiliate WGN reported.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio