Aviation safety investigations & reports

Fire protection system event, 184km E SABGU (IFR), Airbus A330, VH-QPE

Investigation number:
200504074
Status: Completed
Investigation completed

Summary

On 21 August 2005, the Aircraft and Railway Accidents Investigation Commission (ARAIC) of Japan notified the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) of an air safety occurrence involving an Australian-registered and operated aircraft, which occurred earlier that day at Kansai International Airport. The ATSB appointed an accredited representative to participate in the investigation into the occurrence, in accordance with Annex 13 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation.

On 20 August 2005, an A330 aircraft, registered VH-QPE, was being operated on a scheduled passenger service from Narita International Airport, Japan, to Perth International Airport, Western Australia. The aircraft departed Narita at about 1238 Coordinated Universal Time, with 13 crew and 181 passengers on board. At 1405, while the aircraft was in cruise, the crew received an Electronic Centralized Aircraft Monitoring (ECAM) warning indicating that there was smoke in the forward cargo hold. The crew activated the fire extinguishing system, and diverted the aircraft to Kansai International Airport, Japan. At 1551, immediately after the aircraft had landed, emergency services personnel reported that there appeared to be smoke in the vicinity of the nose landing gear. The flight crew initiated an emergency evacuation of the aircraft. During the evacuation, one passenger sustained serious injuries and eight passengers sustained minor injuries.

The ARAIC is the independent Japanese government authority responsible for the safety investigation of aviation accidents and incidents in Japan. The ARAIC will publish the final report related to the investigation of this occurrence.

Reported Information

On 21 August 2005, the Aircraft and Railway Accidents Investigation Commission (ARAIC) of Japan notified the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) of an air safety occurrence involving an Australian-registered and -operated aircraft, which occurred earlier that day at Kansai International Airport. The ATSB appointed an accredited representative to participate in the investigation into the occurrence, in accordance with clause 5.18 1 and 5.23 2 of Annex 13 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation. To protect the information supplied by ARAIC to the ATSB and investigative work undertake to assist the ARAIC, the ATSB initiated an investigation under the Transport Safety Investigation Act 2003. The report presented below was prepared principally from information supplied to the ATSB.

On 20 August 2005, an A330 aircraft, registered VH-QPE, was being operated on a scheduled passenger service from Narita International Airport, Japan, to Perth International Airport, Western Australia. The aircraft departed Narita at about 1238 Coordinated Universal Time, with 13 crew and 181 passengers on board. At 1405, while the aircraft was in cruise, the crew received an Electronic Centralized Aircraft Monitoring (ECAM) warning indicating that there was smoke in the forward cargo hold. The crew activated the fire extinguishing system, and diverted the aircraft to Kansai International Airport, Japan. At 1551, immediately after the aircraft had landed, emergency services personnel reported that there appeared to be smoke in the vicinity of the nose landing gear. The flight crew initiated an emergency evacuation of the aircraft. During the evacuation, one passenger sustained serious injuries and eight passengers sustained minor injuries. In accordance with its obligations under Annex 13 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation, the ARAIC initiated an investigation of the factors that contributed to the development of the accident.

The ARAIC is the independent Japanese government authority responsible for the safety investigation of aviation accidents and incidents in Japan. The Australian accredited representative's role in the investigation has been to provide the ARAIC with information about the aircraft and its operation, and analyse recorded information.

The ARAIC will publish the final report related to the investigation of this occurrence.


  1. The State of Registry, the State of the Operator, the State of Design and the State of Manufacture shall be entitled to appoint an accredited representative to participate in the investigation.
  2. Any States which on request provides information, facilities or experts to the State conducting the investigation shall be entitled to appoint an accredited representative to participate in the investigation.
General details
Date: 20 August 2005   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 1405 UTC    
Location   (show map): 184km E Sabgu, (IFR)    
State: International   Occurrence type: Fire  
Release date: 30 June 2006   Occurrence class: Operational  
Report status: Final   Occurrence category: Accident  
  Highest injury level: Serious  

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer Airbus Industrie  
Aircraft model A330  
Aircraft registration VH-QPE  
Serial number 0593  
Type of operation Air Transport High Capacity  
Damage to aircraft Nil  
Departure point Tokyo, Japan  
Departure time 1238 UTC  
Destination Perth, WA  
 
Injuries
  Crew Passenger Ground Total
Serious: 0 1 0 1
Minor: 0 8 0 8
None: 13 172 0 185
Total: 13 181 0 194
Last update 16 February 2016