A weather phenomenon of "microburst" type played an important role in the accident in Mexico

A weather phenomenon of "microburst" type played an important role in the accident in Mexico

At the end of July 2018, the Embraer E190 (XA-GAL) Aeromexico crashed shortly after takeoff. Fortunately, everyone on board escaped alive. Investigators blame a "microburst" weather phenomenon.

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On 31 July, at approximately 15: 30 local time in Mexico, aircraft Embraer E190 (XA-GAL) Aeromexico was involved in a plane crash. As a result, 49 people suffered injuries and were hospitalized. There were 103 persons (99 passengers and 4 crew members).

In the first part of the day, the aircraft Embraer E190 (XA-GAL) operated the AM2430 flight from Mexico City to Durango. It landed at its destination around 14: 10, with 23 minutes ahead of time. While the plane was ready for the return flight AM2431 (Durango - Mexico City), the weather worsened greatly, with cumulus cloud ceiling up to 2500 ft.


A microburst, guilty of the accident in Mexico

Around 15: 15, a strong thunderstorm occurred in Durango, with the temperature dropping from 28 degrees to 20 degrees. Around 15: 30, Embraer E190 (XA-GAL) Aeroméxico Connect started running on the runway to take off. Due to strong wind gusts, the aircraft failed to reach altitude, falling and hitting the ground for the first time with the left wing, at which point the engine detached.

The investigators blame a weather phenomenon of the type "microburst", also known as "shear wind". These forcing winds are more upright, hitting the ground with power, then the airflow gains an upward trajectory. It is a very dangerous phenomenon for aircraft, which was seen in the case of this accident.

microburst - an example

The Directorate General of Civil Aeronautics of Mexico (DGCA) said investigators found evidence of a microburst above the aerodrome. A short-term storm quickly broke down at the airport, changing flight conditions.

The flight crew of 3 persons - being on board and a first officer in preparation, who was in the right seat - did not receive the updated weather information and that would certainly have led to the takeoff delay.

According to investigators, the aircraft became unstable while running on the runway, and the left engine hit the edge of the runway. In these circumstances, the aircraft failed to take altitiduine and collapsed at 350 meters below the runway threshold.

Investigators found no technical problems with the 2 General Electric CF34-10E engines. Engine no. 1 had 26768 total flight hours (2737 hours since last revision). Engine no. 2 had 20 072 total flight hours, 14 614 hours since the last overhaul. The aircraft's systems functioned flawlessly.

The General Directorate of Civil Aeronautics of Mexico (DGCA) also stated that there were numerous simulations with different flight crews, which experienced the weather conditions similar to those on the AM2431 flight. In all cases, the results were the same: accident. This helped investigators conclude that pilots are not guilty of procedural errors made during take-off.

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