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  • Pilots May Use Rudder Too Much
    Posted by Lee Ann Tegtmeier 5:10 PM on Sep 07, 2011

    Airbus A310 and A300-600 aircraft will gain a new device--a Stop Rudder Inputs Warning  (SRIW) system--if an EASA proposed airworthiness directive, based on an Airbus design change, goes through as it is now.

    The SRIW monitors pilots' rudder inputs and triggers visual and oral warnings if it detects a "dangerous rudder doublet." This proposed AD also would require other aircraft modifications, including upgrades to the Flight Control Computer and Flight Warning Computer.

    These actions stem from a 2001 accident in which A300 pilots flew into wake vortices and used too many rudder inputs to try to stabilize the aircraft, and crashed.

    EASA doesn't specify the incident, but American Airlines did crash an A300 shortly after takeoff from New York JFK in 2001 and wake vortices and the rudder contributed to that fatal crash.

    Since that accident, the FAA and IATA published a study that found pilots sometimes use the rudder inappropriately, which concerns regulators.  

    EASA is accepting comments to this proposed AD through October 5. If you would like to contribute, please send thoughts to ADs@easa.europa.eu.

    Tags: om99, EASA, A300

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