AA 4189 10/7/09

Thought I’d post this as it scared me just a tad :wink:

Was on AA 4189 on Wed night heading to PHL from O’Hare. As we headed out over Lake Michigan the flight attendant came and looked at both wings which had been illuminated. Shortly there after, the flight turned from its SE heading back west to Chicago. Capt came on and said nothing to worry about, just a small technical problem. Then heard the FA say nothing was wrong with the plane, just the computer :open_mouth: Apparently it was telling the pilot that the spoilers were deployed when they were not.

Anyway, as we headed back to the airport the plane turned again heading now south still over the lake (now I am thinking Hudson River landing). Capt comes on again noting that we were too heavy and had to burn off excess fuel before landing :open_mouth:

Finally as we again turned west toward the city the FA told us not worry when we see emergency/rescue vehicles with lights flashing up and down the runway for us as it was “standard proceedure” :open_mouth: :open_mouth:

Anyway, obviously we made it, but man was that scary. Take a look at the flight info (at some point it was disabled and not avail to public as you can see fromt he link so wonder if they thought something bad could happen) Shows flight originating at 10:40 EST and shut off info at 10:52 EST as we had just begun heading back west to airport. Flight didn’t arrive back at O’Hare for just under another hour.

flightaware.com/live/flight/EGF4 … /KORD/KORD

Anyone have any other info on this flight and whether or not there was anything to be worried about?

Probably the pilots just having a little fun at the passengers’ expense…
There is absolutely no cause for alarm!

I wouldn’t even think the FA would have to check and see if the spoilers were deployed. No experience at all in a big bird, but I would imagine that as soon as they’re out, you know it!

If the aircraft is telling you they’re out, it’s best to have a look anyway.

Do the speed brakes automatically retract on the ERJ at max power? I know after the AA crash at Cali that Boeing modified it’s planes to do and think Airbus always did. Either way, if they did stick up, the pilots should have been able to pull breakers or cut hydraulics to get them to drop down. Sounds like the crew handled everything professionally and don’t think you were in any danger at all. The crash trucks will always be sent out when a pilot declares an emergency.

Nice one. :laughing:

I am an airport firefighter. The reason the fire trucks would take a standby position near the runway for this is not expecting a crash, but to watch for hot brakes. Anytime a jet comes in with either spoilers, thrust reversers, or flap problems, it may be coming in either fast or have to use its wheel brakes more than usual, and be at risk for overheating the brakes. Not a major concern, just something operationally for the fire department. Even if the brakes did overheat, the aircraft usually will just wait for them to cool, and some fire departments will use high pressure fans to help cool the brakes. All in all, this sounds like a minor technical problem, probably just a bad indicator switch on the spoilers.