The Cradle of American Airpower – Columbus, New Mexico
Yesterday’s UAL Flt. 328 Engine Out and Fire Over Denver
Video shows airplane engine on fire after pilot declares ‘MAYDAY’ just minutes into the flight.
A witness said, “We heard a gigantic boom and, as we did that, we saw a huge puff of smoke and then stuff started falling out of the sky.” Several of the passengers noticed that in parts of the ship some people clearly thought nothing of the sudden sound, likely thinking it was a normal gear retraction thud, of something otherwise normal, and were seen still reading their magazines and papers. One passenger on the right side actually used her phone to capture video of the damaged engine fire.
In the meantime, the flight crew maintained their professionally calm demeanor and notified Denver of their engine power loss. Denver, in return, gave them 1st priority to land on any runway of their choice. Below the video is a photo of the engine cowl ring which fell to earth right on the front doorstep of a suburban home, apparently doing no damage. None of the passengers or flight crew aboard the Boeing 777 were injured in the uneventful landing, nor, miraculously, was anyone hurt on the ground, although there was some property damage from the falling debris.
Long time FASF member, author, and aviation history contributor, Captain Nancy Welz Aldrich (at Left), who is a retired United Airlines International Pilot, and who also crewed on their Jumbo jets before retiring, remarked:
“Having seen the pictures and read the comments about United Flight 328, I thought I would comment. While I have never flown a Boeing 777, I am very familiar with United’s training programs. I worked several years as an instructor on the DC-10. Many hours are spent dealing with engine failures of different types, including loss on the runway, loss at liftoff, loss in flight, and while landing. In my opinion, the most difficult of these is losing the engine thrust just at liftoff. Let me emphasize that no pilot can make it through the company’s rigorous training without being able to handle an engine loss at every phase of flight. These pilots did an outstanding job in recognizing the problem and returning to DIA for a safe landing, and I applaud them!”
Just below, is a short (5 min) video depicting both the flight path of UAL 328 and of the actual communication that took place between the flight deck and the Denver Tower.
Channel 9 Local Denver Channel News – Well done news coverage of the incident by this local newsgroup. Their coverage includes an actual video of the burning engine. The video is 10:46 minutes in length.