Interesting track yesterday for AWE432 (KPHX-PHOG): … /KPHX/PHOG.

They spent over 4 hours in the air giving a scenic tour of the California Desert and the beautiful Buckeye area. :smiley: The direct “out and back” flying time from KPHX to offshore Santa Barbara and back is about 2 hours. Whatever happened required more air time than just burning off fuel to get within max landing weight, and required a return to KPHX (maybe just for convenience).

Anyone know what was going on?


Seems like it was a mechanical issue that didn’t require landing immediately, but still enough of an issue to not want to cross the Pacific with it.


Why didn’t they just land at LAX instead of going back to PHX?


Because all the AWE personnel, equipment and maintenance is at PHX, not LAX. If you have a problem that doesn’t require immediate landing, you might as well go to your hub.

Also, it would be easier to put the stranded passengers on a different company plane if they have to. It’s just logistically easier, if that is indeed what happened.


Agree w/ N777. The odd thing is after turning back, they circled for 2+ hours instead of going direct to PHX. You’d think they would want to get the passengers back into the terminal and the plane into the hangar as soon as practical.


Could be burning fuel. A flight from PHX to Hawaii would have a lot of jet fuel on board and it would not be able to land with all of it.


Perhaps someone who holds a 75 type can chime in here but I seem to recall reading somewhere that the 75 does not have fuel dump capabilities. If that is true then the only way to get down to landing weight is to burn it. I note from the tracklog that they spent the last 2.5 hours stooging around at 19,000 or so. If I was trying to burn off fuel quickly I would head down. As for PHX over LAX. Since we don’t know the nature of the malfunction we can’t say if it was better to land right away over returning to point of departure. As an example, perhaps the malfunction was in the navigation systems. Nothing wrong with the aircraft but unable to perform an extended overwater trip. Better to return to your main base where you have maintenance and other aircraft to possibly accomodate your pax rather than land at the nearest airport.


Boeing Commercial Aircraft - In-Flight Fuel Jettison Capability

The 757-200/-300 cannot jettison fuel in-flight.


It may not been a malfunction in the manual so they had no set procedures to try and were trying to talk to maintanence about the issue as they were burning fuel.


Interesting list! I don’t see the KC-135 or KC-10 on the list.

Regarding the topic, at least they didn’t remain off LA to a little trouble shooting.



That’s cuz the KC-135 and KC-10 are not COMMERCIAL aircraft. The list referenced above is for Boeing COMMERCIAL aircraft, not military aircraft.