Aviation safety investigations & reports

Airbus, VH-VND, aircraft diversion near Canberra Aerodrome ACT, 5 August 2009

Investigation number:
Status: Completed
Investigation completed


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On 5 August 2009, during on a scheduled flight from Melbourne, Victoria (Vic) to Mackay, Queensland (Qld), the flight crew of an Airbus A320-232 aircraft, registered VH-VND, were advised of an electrical burning smell in the mid cabin area. Within 5 minutes of that advice, multiple left and right engine warnings were observed on the electronic centralised aircraft monitoring (ECAM) display. The flight was diverted to Canberra, Australian Capital Territory (ACT) where an uneventful landing was conducted.

Subsequent examination found the electrical burning smell had originated from a fluorescent light ballast resistor in the cabin. The ECAM warnings were attributed to an internal fault in the number-2 display management computer (DMC).

Following similar incidents, the DMC manufacturer introduced a cyclic software check of parameters used in the receiving function, with an auto reset of the DMC if corrupted parameters were identified.

The aircraft manufacturer reviewed its operational procedures and provided operators with additional procedures for flight crew to transfer from a faulty DMC to an alternate DMC during flight or reset a faulty DMC on the ground.

Download Final Report
[Download  PDF: 3.07MB]
General details
Date: 05 August 2009   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 1040 EST   Investigation level: Short - click for an explanation of investigation levels  
Location   (show map): near Canberra Aerodrome    
State: Australian Capital Territory   Occurrence type: Avionics/flight instruments  
Release date: 29 June 2010   Occurrence category: Incident  
Report status: Final   Highest injury level: None  

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer Airbus Industrie  
Aircraft model A320  
Aircraft registration VH-VND  
Serial number 3296  
Type of operation Air Transport High Capacity  
Damage to aircraft Nil  
Departure point Melbourne, Vic.  
Destination Mackay, Qld  
Last update 14 November 2018