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 G-ARTA VC10 Heavy landing at Gatwick 1972?

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John Morgan

Posts : 4
Join date : 2011-08-02
Age : 72
Location : Hayling Island, Hampshire

PostSubject: G-ARTA VC10 Heavy landing at Gatwick 1972?   Wed Aug 03, 2011 11:31 am

I believe I was on duty in Load Control when this happened and I understood that the aircraft had been flown into Heathrow to offload its passengers and then just had to position back to the Gatwick base with just the flight/cabin crew on board.
Apparently the aircraft should not be flown without full fuel in the central fuel tank, and since the aircraft had used up most of its fuel on getting to Heathrow I believe the Flight Crew, who would have been very tired, made the mistake of thinking that as Gatwick was only "10 minutes down the road" so to speak, they did not ensure that fuel was in the centre fuel tank. The consequences were catastrophic as when it came into land the weight was not in trim resulting in an extremely heavy landing which by the time it came to a halt had cracked the fuselage in two. A sight I will not forget, very tragic indeed. Also I believe the Captain and First Officer both had broken bones on impact and were eventually removed from their positions with the company. I cannot remember whether any of the Cabin Crew suffered any injuries but I would be surprised if they hadn't.
John Morgan
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Posts : 21
Join date : 2010-02-11

PostSubject: G-ARTA   Sun Aug 07, 2011 10:26 am

Hi John

We had a feature page a while back on G-ARTA

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Hope thats of interest and always happy to add any more info

All the best

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