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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 193936
Last updated: 13 October 2019
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Date:05-JAN-2014
Time:
Type:Silhouette image of generic B738 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Boeing 737-8GJ (WL)
Owner/operator:SpiceJet
Registration: VT-SGU
C/n / msn: 37366/3628
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 182
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: None
Category:Serious incident
Location:Delhi-Indira Gandhi International Airport (DEL/VIDP) -   India
Phase: Landing
Nature:Domestic Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:Goa Airport
Destination airport:Delhi-Indira Gandhi International Airport (DEL/VIDP)
Investigating agency: AAIB India
Narrative:
Flight SG-255/256 was a scheduled domestic round trip from Delhi, India to Goa and back. The flight (both the sectors) was under the command of an ATPL holder who was a CAT II qualified pilot. His first officer who was a CPL holder was CAT IIIA qualified. The aircraft was certified for CAT IIIA operations. The leg to Goa was uneventful and the aircraft landed there at 1205 UTC.
The forecasted visibility at Delhi between 1000 UTC to 1800 UTC was 400 m though becoming 200 m between 1500 UTC to 1600 UTC. The forecasted visibility at the alternate aerodromes i.e. Lucknow and Jaipur was 2000 m.
At the time of take-off from Goa, 9.5 tonnes of fuel was on board as per the CFP which included 500 kgs of fuel for holding at destination. The aircraft actual time of departure from Goa was 1230 UTC.
When the aircraft was at 50 NM from Delhi they had about 700 kg of extra fuel. Due to heavy traffic and low visibility conditions a large number of aircraft were in sequence for landing and SG256 was 13th in sequence. When the aircraft was approaching Delhi it was asked to do two orbits. Subsequently, they were made to descent to 7000 ft. At this point of time, the fuel was 3.4T.
When the aircraft was approaching Delhi the ATIS broadcast read a visibility of 150 meters and RVR for runway 28 was 1150m/950m/550m. Later there was fluctuation reported in the RVR and when the aircraft was being vectored for runway 28 the roll out RVR for runway 28 had dropped to 50m. The captain decided to hold at 7000 ft, expecting that there would be an improvement in roll out RVR. The aircraft was in hold for about 26 minutes and the fuel quantity during this time was approaching minimum diversion fuel (MDF). The captain checked Jaipur weather. The visibility reported was 900m reducing to 800m with RVR of 1500m.
The roll out RVR for runway 28 at Delhi did not improve and RVR for runway 29 was already below minima. The captain therefore decided to divert to Jaipur. The fuel onboard at that instant was 3100 kgs and the required minimum diversion fuel to Jaipur was 2573 kgs. At that particular moment a large number of aircraft were deciding on diverting for the same reason.
There was frequency congestion as number of aircraft was trying to contact Jaipur ATC. After setting course for Jaipur the aircraft started preparing for approach in to Jaipur.
The flight crew assessed their fuel quantity for going to Ahmedabad or Lucknow. There was no alternate but to land at Jaipur. When the aircraft was descending into Jaipur, the Jaipur controller had informed the aircraft that the visibility had dropped to 50 m with an RVR of 200 m for runway 27. The captain however informed ATC about their commitment to land at Jaipur due to fuel. The flight crew decided to carry out a dual channel auto land.
There were two aircraft ahead of the SpiceJet aircraft, one of these had carried out go around and diverted to Ahmedabad. The other aircraft, an Air India Airbus A320 (VT-ESH) carried out a manual landing in below minima conditions. While landing this aircraft met with an accident, causing severe damage. The aircraft could not be moved resulting in blocking of the runway. ATC Jaipur conveyed this information to the flight SG256 and at that time the aircraft was at 5 nm from touchdown. Once the flight crew of Air India flight also repeated that the runway was blocked, a missed approach was initiated by SG256 at 3000 ft.
Total fuel on board at that time was 1715 kgs.
The captain then decided to return to Delhi irrespective of reported visibility and RVR. After diverting to Delhi, the aircraft came in contact with ATC Delhi, declared a MAYDAY due fuel with a request for straight and short vector for ILS 28. During the ILS approach for runway 28, the tower had reported RVR for runway 28 as 375m/900m/50m. A dual channel auto land was carried out.
Fuel remaining at that time was 400 kgs. Fuel remaining during engine shut down was 150 kgs.

PROBABLE CAUSE
The incident of "emergency landing due low fuel" occurred as
the aircraft had to carry out second diversion with low fuel on board from alternate airport to the original destination airport due blockage of runway by another aircraft (VT-ESH) which was substantially damaged during landing at the alternate airport.
there was lack of operational supervision and desired ground support to flight.
there was lack of oversight of the flight operations
the earlier diversion from the destination to alternate was due low visibility conditions at the destination airport and as there was deteriorating visibility conditions at the alternate airport, the diversion to Lucknow instead of Jaipur would have been more appropriate.

Sources:

http://dgca.nic.in/accident/reports/incident/VT-SGU.pdf

Accident investigation:
cover
  
Investigating agency: AAIB India
Status: Investigation completed
Duration:
Download report: Final report


Images:

Photo of VT-SGU courtesy AirHistory.net


Antalya (LTAI / AYT)
23 August 2013; (c) Danny Grew

Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
02-Mar-2017 20:08 harro Added
02-Mar-2017 21:09 harro Updated [Source]

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