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Summary

Summary

At 1200 Eastern Standard Time on 26 October 2005, the outboard bead heel of the number-1 wheel tyre on the left main landing gear (MLG) of an Airbus A340-642 (A340) aircraft, registered HS-TNA, separated from the outboard rim of the wheel assembly during a landing on runway 16 at Melbourne Airport, Vic. The landing was conducted during gusting crosswind conditions.

The number-1 wheel tyre deflated immediately after the bead heel separated from the wheel rim. The tyre then partially disintegrated during the remainder of the landing roll, and the tyre tread detached from the tyre casing. Following the number-1 wheel tyre deflation, the crew maintained control of the aircraft and, apart from some minor deviations to the left and right of the runway centreline, tracked along the centreline.

The aircraft touched down with 15-degrees of yaw as a result of its handling by the flight crew. That yaw angle was greater than recommended by the aircraft manufacturer, and increased the risk of damage to the MLG at touchdown. It also increased the risk that the resultant groundslip angle of the MLG tyres would exceed the saturation point at which they entered a fully-skidded state.

The pilot in command made dual side stick inputs during the latter stages of the approach intending to assist the copilot to maintain the attitude and trajectory of the aircraft. Those dual inputs compounded the handling difficulties being experienced by the copilot and increased the associated risks. Those risks could have been mitigated by the pilot in command taking control of the aircraft and pressing the side stick priority pushbutton at the point where he appeared to have become concerned about its attitude and trajectory, instead of making dual side stick inputs.

 
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