On 28 February 2012, an Airbus A340-313X aircraft, Portuguese registered CS-TQM (TQM), was operating on a chartered service from Sydney, New South Wales to Darwin Airport, Northern Territory.

On approach into Darwin, the crew noted heavy rainfall near the threshold of runway 29 and requested wind information from the Darwin tower air traffic controller. At that time, the windsock at the threshold was indicating 5 kts tailwind and the approach was continued. In the final stages of the approach, the rainfall increased significantly and the aircraft deviated below the glideslope. On touchdown, the wind suddenly increased to an 18 kt tailwind, possibly due to a microburst, and the aircraft landed heavily.

Subsequent engineering inspection revealed a crack in the No. 1 engine rear attachment bolt retainer. Components from the left and right main landing were also replaced.

As a result of the incident, the operator has

  • Introduced go-arounds from 50 ft and go-arounds from immediately after touchdown into simulator training sessions.
  • Developed an awareness program to increase the go-around mind set among flight crew, including allowing First Officers to initiate a go-around without the need for consent from the Captain.