Another CKS Airport Screwup

From CNN:

SIA in Taipei airport mishap
July 19, 2002 Posted: 3:34 PM HKT (0734 GMT)

Staff and wires

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Taiwan aviation officials say a Singapore Airlines plane was on the wrong taxiway at Taipei airport – the scene of a deadly SIA crash in 2000 – when its wing hit two objects before taking off.

The carrier said in a statement the pilot of Flight SQ29, which landed safely in Singapore at about 0315 GMT Friday, was told by air traffic controllers that the wing “made contact with two tailstands” at Chiang Kai-shek International Airport.

A tailstand is equipment used to stabilize planes during the loading and unloading of cargo.

SIA said the crew was being interviewed by flight operations management and investigators from Singapore’s Ministry of Transport “to discover how the incident occurred.”

“Among the issues to be discussed is the routing the aircraft took while taxiing,” it said.

Taiwan’s Civil Aeronautics Administration told Reuters the plane was on the wrong taxiway when it hit the tailstands – echoing events leading up to the October 2000 crash that killed 83 of the 179 people on board a Los Angeles-bound Boeing 747.

“The control tower informed the captain about the incident and the captain said he found no abnormalities and continued taking off,” the airport’s director, Wang Teh-ho, told reporters in Taipei.

“It’s probably a mistake,” he said, without elaborating.

SIA’s flawless record of zero crashes or fatalities was shattered in a fiery accident at Chiang Kai-shek when Flight SQ006 slammed into construction equipment on a partially closed runway during a fierce storm.

The runway ran parallel to the one the plane was supposed to be on.

Taiwan’s Aviation Safety Council issued a report in late April that said pilot error and bad weather were the most probable causes. Singapore disputed some of the findings and said operations at Chiang Kai-shek also were to blame.

SIA said Flight SQ29 suffered minor damage to a wing panel.

“Based on checks conducted in flight, the captain found no abnormalities with the aircraft’s performance and decided to continue to Singapore,” it said in the statement.

I’ve been following this too. CKS airport says the pilot was on the wrong taxiway but not if he was directed as such. Equally worrying is the pilot saying he detected no abnormalities and flew as normal. I can’t believe there wasn’t a physical check of the wing before take off but perhaps that’s what they mean by ‘detect’. I guess the truth will out but given CKS’s denial of all responsibility in the 2000 Singapore Airlines crash, despite accident reports to the contrary, I have my doubts.

I’d have to agree. Why didn’t they turn around and come back to inspect the plane? Was it the pilots decision? I wonder… Could be an interesting story…


I think it’s interesting that these incidents seem to be happening only with Singapore Airlines.

It now seems that the pilots didn’t know they had stuck the tail stand and were radioed about it mid flight. CKS has also taken a swipe at SAL saying that they need to know the airport layout better. Seems there’s still plenty of ill feeling and finger pointing going on between the two sides.

It would appear that the cockpit of flight SQ029 were only told of the incident after they had taken off, not as first indicated by CKS officials that they had been made aware before take off.
What i find interesting is that there is an amount of finger pointing going on, which when you bear in mind the conclusions that came from the crash in 2000 is hardly surprising. SIA have complained on more than one ocassion about the poorly signed route and taxiways at CKS, and with CKS still not having ground radar it raises a question about the openness of the original crash findings that attempted to place the blame squarely on SIa and the storm.

From “The CKS Airport Management Handbook”:

Rule 1: It’s always the foreigners’ fault.

From the Taiwan Management handbook.

It is always easier and better to blame someone else."

I still think it’s interesting that it’s only Singapore Airlines that have been having problems with CKS. Why is that? No one seems to be addressing that.

how many SA incidents are we talking about? I can think of 2.
Is that a pattern?

That’s more than any other airline, buddy. According to Taipei Times SAL almost made the same mistake on 6/13/02. So that would make it 3 incidents encounting. Pattern? Sure is starting to look like one.