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It's been a interesting 12 months, this time last year I was looking for a job and paid good money to go to Morocco to fly a Boeing 737-800 for 500 flight hours. As things turned out I was offered a job in July with a rival airline based in Casablanca, flying both the 737-800 and the older 737-400. So now I get home to Accrington and my Girl once a month for a week or so.
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A fuel leak.......

Posted 04-05-2014 at 15:22 by Boeing Guy

Spurred on by the photo thread. I thought this story of events that happened a month or two ago might bring a smile to some.

As most of you know I fly a VIP Boeing 737, Its not a new aircraft it quite old, but we do go to some interesting places. Recently we went into Saudi Arabia, when we left, positioning to somewhere else hot a few days later this happened.



However on arrival at the plane…….

I was on the flight deck, in civiys, getting the paperwork etc sorted, The Captain (Gov) and our Engineer (Spanners) were outside, we are fuelling 7 tonnes, just the tanks in the wings not the centre tank, when Spanners runs into the flight deck telling me we have a fuel leak and starts pumping the right tank fuel into the centre tank.
Seeing the refuelling panel is on my side of the aircraft I open the Flight deck side window and look outside, no sign of fuel and the fuel truck driving off into the sunset?

After several mins, Spanners comes into the flight deck to tell me Gov needs me to help stem the flow, so after explaining the Axillary Power Unit (A small jet engine in the tail of the aircraft, giving us electrical power and compressed air, for pressurisation/ air conditioning etc) fire procedure to the girls, I put my yellow vest on and followed him downstairs.

There was no sign of Gov on the left hand side of the Aircraft, but on walking round the front, I saw Gov and lots of wet tarmac, Jet A.


Gov was standing at the root of the wing with his thumb touching the underside of the wing, uh ho…..

What had happened was this, during refuelling one of the water drains (the aircraft have several to check for contamination of fuel) had decided to give in, causing a stream of fuel to drain out onto the apron.

I replaced Gov and got covered in Jet Fuel almost immediately, great…. The constant switching of thumbs meant I got more and more covered in this stuff, then the fire engine arrived……

The fireman( sorry Firefighter) gestured for me to move so he could wet the ground, but of course if I moved then the fuel would keep flowing out. I had this vission of being blasted by Water, covered in Foam of just being a human fireball, oh the joy.

As he did not understand English I had to wait for one of the handling agents to explain to him.
After some time, Gov took over and eventually the fuel transfer from the wing into the centre tank was complete.
If we had to leave, well Boeing state there cannot be a fuel imbalance between the wings of more than 453Kgs, we were 3500kgs in the left and 0kgs in the right. hummmmm, looks like we fix it or we stay, oh joy.
By now Spanners had managed to start fixing the problem, Gov and I were enjoying our new cologne, eau BP Jet A.

The fire chief decided we were going nowhere until the leak was fixed and was having a heated discussion with Spanners, which did not help when Spanners said a small leak is acceptable oops.... world war 3 was in full throw

Eventually we manage to explain to the Fire Chief that the plane was safe and he let us go. Spanners managed to fix the leak with a temporary fix by inserting a screw.

Well seeing I am still here, the screw must have worked.
It was an interesting evening and boy did we stink....
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Comments

  1. Old Comment
    Margaret Pilkington's Avatar
    Si, It is always interesting to read what is going on in someone elses world.......come on in...pull up a chair and get yarning.
    It has been a bit lonely in here just me, talking to myself.
    Good blog by the way!
    Posted 04-05-2014 at 15:42 by Margaret Pilkington Margaret Pilkington is offline
  2. Old Comment
    DaveinGermany's Avatar
    If your Spanner didn't use a big hammer he didn't do a proper job!
    Posted 04-05-2014 at 15:42 by DaveinGermany DaveinGermany is offline
  3. Old Comment
    Turtle's Avatar
    Talk about Dutch boys with their finger in the hole in the dyke... Yikes! What a tale. Thanks for this - I enjoyed reading
    Posted 05-05-2014 at 21:48 by Turtle Turtle is offline
  4. Old Comment
    putsinker's Avatar
    I like the way you all kept cool and didn't "Flap" LOL.
    Posted 16-08-2014 at 02:49 by putsinker putsinker is offline
 

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