Video: China Airlines Cargo 747 Damaged At O’Hare

Video: China Airlines Cargo 747 Damaged At O’Hare

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A China Airlines Cargo Boeing 747 had a pretty rough morning in Chicago.

China Airlines Cargo 747 hits ground equipment

This incident involves a roughly 18 year old Boeing 747-400F cargo jet with the registration code B-18715, operating for China Airlines. The plane flew a redeye from Anchorage (ANC) to Chicago (ORD), landing at O’Hare Airport in the early hours of the morning, just before 6AM.

As is the case with much of the country right now, Chicago is dealing with some weather, as there was lots of snow on the ground, which can be tricky to navigate. While taxiing to its arrival stand, the jumbo jet seemed to lose control, and ran into a bunch of ground equipment, which hit the two left engines.

The plane managed to eventually come to a stop. You can see a video of the incident below.

What happened here?

While we’ll have to wait for the full investigation to learn all the details, ADS-B data clearly shows how the plane veered off the taxiway. As you can see below, this came shortly after the plane had to make some pretty sharp turns, so it sure seems like the pilots lost control of the plane.

What caused that remains to be seen. Obviously icy conditions aren’t unusual in winter, while plowing through a bunch of baggage carts and other equipment is. In the video it’s pretty clear that the plane was taxiing at a very fast pace, which doesn’t make much sense for having to make turns in these conditions.

I’m curious to see how long it takes until this plane flies again. I can’t imagine these engine and structural repairs will happen overnight (or even within the next couple of weeks).

Bottom line

A China Airlines Cargo Boeing 747 sustained some serious damage at Chicago O’Hare this morning, after landing from Anchorage. The plane plowed through some ground equipment, causing (what appears to be) significant damage to the two left engines. I’m curious to see what comes of this investigation, and how soon this plane is flying again.

Any pilots with more knowledge of this have any idea what could have caused this?

Conversations (16)
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  1. KC Guest

    “In the video it’s pretty clear that the plane was taxiing at a very fast pace, which doesn’t make much sense for having to make turns in these conditions”.
    If you check ADS-B data - they were taxiing at 4kts. The video was sped up.

  2. Mick Guest

    I’m based in Chicago. The snow stopped at least 12 hours before this accident so not sure about visibility problems.

  3. ViewFromTheRamp Guest

    Having worked at ORD for about a year (out of 35 working various ramps) and having worked flights literally right across the taxiway from here, it would appear that this occurred on the AA Cargo ramp (note that most of the carts are AA or Eagle). This is where the ADS-B data shows the slide to the left from taxiway S2. Further ADS-B data (not shown in this post) shows that the aircraft remained in...

    Having worked at ORD for about a year (out of 35 working various ramps) and having worked flights literally right across the taxiway from here, it would appear that this occurred on the AA Cargo ramp (note that most of the carts are AA or Eagle). This is where the ADS-B data shows the slide to the left from taxiway S2. Further ADS-B data (not shown in this post) shows that the aircraft remained in this position for about 3 hours before being pushed back and towed (presumably) to CI's parking spot at the West end of the SE cargo ramp hours later.
    Interestingly, this meant that all other aircraft on the SE cargo ramp were stuck there until this CI aircraft moved. This includes the AF/KL, LH, UPS, Swissport and AGI ramps which service (IIRC, QR, QF, CK, CX and others). Taxiway S2 is the only exit from this area. The AA Cargo ramp rarely had any aircraft parked there in my limited experience but was littered with carts, dollies and pallets waiting to be ran over to T3.
    It would seem from the ADS-B data that the CI aircraft was taking it slow from the exit of the runway to taxiway S2 (about 6-8 kts) it was only in this area that the speed increased to 18 kts after it slid left from S2 towards the AA ramp. Given that the video shows the nose gear turned to the right with little to no effect, that the Capt. increased thrust on engines 1 & 2 to turn to the right but with little braking action couldn't turn and only accelerated the aircraft as we see in the video.

  4. FF Guest

    As most of you can see it was snowing or had snowed which the ops team didn’t clean the runway I’m sure the pilot didn’t see the center line and used his wing barrier as the center line but I’m not a pilot I wouldn’t know

  5. LL Guest

    China is so full of sh**. They are not even close to East Asian countries standard. I am sure Taiwan will laugh at this and I can't imagine how Beijing will comment on this at least $100MM damage. Ha.

    1. polarbear Guest

      Umm, China Airlines is the Taiwanese carrier

    2. Jenny Guest

      Americans are so brainwashed by media and their government, you see "China" and spout bigoted nonsense while thinking yourself the "good guys". China Airlines is a Taiwanese company.

      Your brain is full of sh*** not China.

    3. Don Guest

      Certainly China, a racist totalitarian criminal regime, are the “good guys.” Their treatment of the Uyghurs, putting nearly two million into internment camps, is a shining example of their moral superiority. Although I am sure someone who is quite knowledgeable about China and quick to defend them as yourself already is aware of this. You could not possibly be that ignorant and arrogant, right.

  6. Steven E Guest

    I would suggest that this will be grounded for months - wow that taxi speed - almost as If it was preparing for finals

  7. Enzo Guest

    Clearly it's pilot error. But what lead them to that?

    KORD 281155Z 36010KT 2SM -SN BR OVC018 M09/M12 A3025

    Maybe some weather cocking with the North wind and slick taxi ways not giving great nose wheel registration so they have an excursion off the first turn as the plane keeps going to the right so they throw in too much correction as they realize the nose wheel isn't tracking, maybe a bunch of power on...

    Clearly it's pilot error. But what lead them to that?

    KORD 281155Z 36010KT 2SM -SN BR OVC018 M09/M12 A3025

    Maybe some weather cocking with the North wind and slick taxi ways not giving great nose wheel registration so they have an excursion off the first turn as the plane keeps going to the right so they throw in too much correction as they realize the nose wheel isn't tracking, maybe a bunch of power on 3&4 and now they're whipping back the other way and fast when it catches.

    Just guessing... clearly they didn't mean to do it, but they lost it for sure.

    Tough lesson for this crew.

  8. Eskimo Guest

    Looks just like people who drive in the snow for the first time.
    Not enough winter experience for the pilot. Too bad Taiwan doesn't get snow storms.

  9. LouB747 Guest

    I’m a 747 captain and park in that exact area. Those turns are tight and need to be made at slow speed, even in good conditions. Can’t believe the taxi speed I’m seeing!

  10. MoJoe Diamond

    Investigators will undoubtedly gather far more details, but from the video it's hard not to believe the 747F was taxiing at excessive speed given the poor visibility and snow/traction conditions at the time. Wonder if the pilots were behind schedule and had pressure to get the plane loaded/offloaded in a hurry? (No excuse, obviously, as the damage to the aircraft will now ground the aircraft for weeks.) Fortunate that no one was hurt in the...

    Investigators will undoubtedly gather far more details, but from the video it's hard not to believe the 747F was taxiing at excessive speed given the poor visibility and snow/traction conditions at the time. Wonder if the pilots were behind schedule and had pressure to get the plane loaded/offloaded in a hurry? (No excuse, obviously, as the damage to the aircraft will now ground the aircraft for weeks.) Fortunate that no one was hurt in the incident, but that can't be good for a pilot's career.

  11. Danny Guest

    Unfortunately China Airlines has a terrible record of pilot error mishaps, and other safety issues. As a Taiwanese, I am frustrated they can’t it together. Until they do, I continue to avoid China Airlines at all costs.

  12. Kendor Guest

    Being charitable, is there any possible reading of your comment that doesn't involve you harboring deeply racist grudges against all Taiwanese people, @Sean?

  13. Robert Guest

    This wasn't an ice issue. The plane left the taxiway on the right side then clearly over corrected to the left. This was pilot error.

Featured Comments Most helpful comments ( as chosen by the OMAAT community ).

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polarbear Guest

Umm, China Airlines is the Taiwanese carrier

2
Jenny Guest

Americans are so brainwashed by media and their government, you see "China" and spout bigoted nonsense while thinking yourself the "good guys". China Airlines is a Taiwanese company. Your brain is full of sh*** not China.

1
Eskimo Guest

Looks just like people who drive in the snow for the first time. Not enough winter experience for the pilot. Too bad Taiwan doesn't get snow storms.

1
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