|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||1801 To 2400|
|Locale Reference||intersection : hidig|
|Altitude||msl single value : 32000|
|Controlling Facilities||artcc : czqm.artcc|
|Operator||common carrier : air carrier|
|Make Model Name||B747-200|
|Operating Under FAR Part||Part 121|
|Flight Phase||cruise : level|
|Affiliation||company : air carrier|
|Function||flight crew : captain|
oversight : pic
|Qualification||pilot : flight engineer|
pilot : atp
pilot : cfi
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 100|
flight time total : 5900
flight time type : 350
|Anomaly||other anomaly other|
|Independent Detector||other flight crewa|
|Resolutory Action||none taken : anomaly accepted|
Flight to jfk with a planned re-release en route at hidig intersection. We encountered stronger than forecast headwinds all the way across the atlantic and were not sure we would make our re-release point with the minimum fuel required. Called the company about a half hour prior via a phone patch to inform them of the situation. Upon reaching hidig; we indeed did not have enough fuel to proceed to jfk and diverted to our filed 'initial destination' of bgr. Attempts to reach the company just prior to hidig for updated WX had been unsuccessful. Continued to attempt to reach the company while proceeding to bgr and was able to get a phone patch. Advised the company of the situation. Director of operations enters phone line and say that a 'new' flight plan had been run; saying that we actually needed less fuel at hidig than the previous plan showed; and that we should continue to jfk. I did not accept this; as we had passed hidig about 15 mins previous. I asked if they could run a plan from a point in space; by giving them latitude/long coordinates. He said that they could; and allegedly ran a flight plan from the point in space I gave him. He returned to the line approximately 5 mins later; just prior to top of descent to bgr; to say that the alleged flight plan had been run and showed that we could make jfk with adequate reserves of fuel (approximately 27200 pounds of fuel over destination). With that said; I agreed that I would proceed to jfk. At approximately 200 mi northeast of jfk; our fuel already had decreased to 27000 pounds. I instructed the flight engineer to keep a very close watch on the fuel and that if there was any ATC delay whatsoever we were going to head to bos. We asked for; and were given; more direct routing to jfk during our remaining flight. ATC also gave us more direct routing about 3 times. We were vectored normally for an ILS to runway 4R. Our fuel situation had not become critical yet but had we had any delay I would have had to declare a fuel emergency. We landed and blocked in at our gate with approximately 14000 pounds of fuel remaining; far below my comfort zone and probably less than the minimum fuel required by the far's. I am not sure if the 'flight plan' as given to me by my company was a real flight plan or if they were just telling me it was so that I would continue to jfk instead of bgr; thus saving them time and expense. The minimum fuel at the re-release point is just that: minimum fuel. In the future; if such a situation presents itself again; I will divert to my initial destination regardless of what my company says I can do. The safety of my crew far outweighs any financial burden to the company.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: B747-200 APPROACHED REDISPATCH FIX WITH LESS THAN REQUIRED FUEL. DISPATCH RECALCULATED FUEL REQUIRED TO ENABLE FLT TO CONTINUE TO DEST. FLT CREW CONTINUED; BUT LANDED AT THE DEST WITH CONSIDERABLY LESS FUEL THAN DISPATCH HAD CALCULATED.
Narrative: FLT TO JFK WITH A PLANNED RE-RELEASE ENRTE AT HIDIG INTXN. WE ENCOUNTERED STRONGER THAN FORECAST HEADWINDS ALL THE WAY ACROSS THE ATLANTIC AND WERE NOT SURE WE WOULD MAKE OUR RE-RELEASE POINT WITH THE MINIMUM FUEL REQUIRED. CALLED THE COMPANY ABOUT A HALF HR PRIOR VIA A PHONE PATCH TO INFORM THEM OF THE SITUATION. UPON REACHING HIDIG; WE INDEED DID NOT HAVE ENOUGH FUEL TO PROCEED TO JFK AND DIVERTED TO OUR FILED 'INITIAL DEST' OF BGR. ATTEMPTS TO REACH THE COMPANY JUST PRIOR TO HIDIG FOR UPDATED WX HAD BEEN UNSUCCESSFUL. CONTINUED TO ATTEMPT TO REACH THE COMPANY WHILE PROCEEDING TO BGR AND WAS ABLE TO GET A PHONE PATCH. ADVISED THE COMPANY OF THE SITUATION. DIRECTOR OF OPS ENTERS PHONE LINE AND SAY THAT A 'NEW' FLT PLAN HAD BEEN RUN; SAYING THAT WE ACTUALLY NEEDED LESS FUEL AT HIDIG THAN THE PREVIOUS PLAN SHOWED; AND THAT WE SHOULD CONTINUE TO JFK. I DID NOT ACCEPT THIS; AS WE HAD PASSED HIDIG ABOUT 15 MINS PREVIOUS. I ASKED IF THEY COULD RUN A PLAN FROM A POINT IN SPACE; BY GIVING THEM LAT/LONG COORDINATES. HE SAID THAT THEY COULD; AND ALLEGEDLY RAN A FLT PLAN FROM THE POINT IN SPACE I GAVE HIM. HE RETURNED TO THE LINE APPROX 5 MINS LATER; JUST PRIOR TO TOP OF DSCNT TO BGR; TO SAY THAT THE ALLEGED FLT PLAN HAD BEEN RUN AND SHOWED THAT WE COULD MAKE JFK WITH ADEQUATE RESERVES OF FUEL (APPROX 27200 LBS OF FUEL OVER DEST). WITH THAT SAID; I AGREED THAT I WOULD PROCEED TO JFK. AT APPROX 200 MI NE OF JFK; OUR FUEL ALREADY HAD DECREASED TO 27000 LBS. I INSTRUCTED THE FE TO KEEP A VERY CLOSE WATCH ON THE FUEL AND THAT IF THERE WAS ANY ATC DELAY WHATSOEVER WE WERE GOING TO HEAD TO BOS. WE ASKED FOR; AND WERE GIVEN; MORE DIRECT ROUTING TO JFK DURING OUR REMAINING FLT. ATC ALSO GAVE US MORE DIRECT ROUTING ABOUT 3 TIMES. WE WERE VECTORED NORMALLY FOR AN ILS TO RWY 4R. OUR FUEL SITUATION HAD NOT BECOME CRITICAL YET BUT HAD WE HAD ANY DELAY I WOULD HAVE HAD TO DECLARE A FUEL EMER. WE LANDED AND BLOCKED IN AT OUR GATE WITH APPROX 14000 LBS OF FUEL REMAINING; FAR BELOW MY COMFORT ZONE AND PROBABLY LESS THAN THE MINIMUM FUEL REQUIRED BY THE FAR'S. I AM NOT SURE IF THE 'FLT PLAN' AS GIVEN TO ME BY MY COMPANY WAS A REAL FLT PLAN OR IF THEY WERE JUST TELLING ME IT WAS SO THAT I WOULD CONTINUE TO JFK INSTEAD OF BGR; THUS SAVING THEM TIME AND EXPENSE. THE MINIMUM FUEL AT THE RE-RELEASE POINT IS JUST THAT: MINIMUM FUEL. IN THE FUTURE; IF SUCH A SITUATION PRESENTS ITSELF AGAIN; I WILL DIVERT TO MY INITIAL DEST REGARDLESS OF WHAT MY COMPANY SAYS I CAN DO. THE SAFETY OF MY CREW FAR OUTWEIGHS ANY FINANCIAL BURDEN TO THE COMPANY.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of May 2009 and automatically converted to unabbreviated mixed upper/lowercase text. This report is for informational purposes with no guarantee of accuracy. See NASA's ASRS site for official report.