- 1999 JUN 26 -


99-06-26        0800 CEDST- 2230 ADST             . . . .

Disks and film then secured in exhibit bags and retained in brief case for the trip.  At each security check, the film will be passed around the scanner.  This proved to be a problem at the Zurich Airport, and I very nearly had to return to the ticket agent to get permission.  Finally, the security people relented and did not scan the film.  There was no problem at all in Toronto.

At the Zurich terminal, the equipment was checked through with no problems.  Again at Toronto, customs was cleared with no problems, and it all arrived at Halifax with no breakages or losses.  All locks were found to be secure and unopened.

On returning to Halifax, the equipment was returned to the Hangar and left secured in the hangar.

Trip observations:

Over the past several days, it has come to light that HB-IWF had a problem in Lav ‘A’ or ‘B’ on the flight before the crash. TSB is aware of it and have those documents.  There definitely are documents on file with Swissair to show the nature and extent of these problems.  By photographing the Lavs, it is obvious that there are a lot of electrical components that could be the cause of any such problems.  This is quite important, as on HB-IWF, the G1 & G2 galleys were shipped to the Boeing plant at the time of construction and installed by Boeing staff, not by Swissair staff.  Since the galleys and Lavs are so closely connected, did a problem in one result from a problem with another?

It is also necessary to stress with TSB the need to take and process samples correctly, along with their correct photography.  Samples should not be taken by TSB, and definitely not by Boeing or Swissair.  There is a need to document fully such things as wires and frame pieces before they are altered.  In the hangar, pieces of frame have been straightened and therefore altered before complete photography (which now includes object modelling) and sampling - e.g.: Exh #1-3450.  This straightening occurred before the pieces could be analysed for the suspected broom strawing and feathering, thus precluding such analysis.  Other pieces have been straightened by TSB at the request of Boeing without regard for any later analysis for feathering or broom strawing (i.e. the crown overhead the bathtub in the cockpit ceiling).  

Further examples of this problem occurred during this trip.  A smoke barrier was altered before I could photograph it (because of the alteration, I refused to take the photographs when it was put back in its ‘original’ condition), and it is suspected that swarf on Lav ‘A’ in HB-IWU was altered before it could be recorded and sampled.  Fuses in the forward equipment panel, Electronics Bay, were examined and the panel closed before I could take photos.  It then had to be re-opened.  At times, I became the third person to photograph an item, having to stand in line while a TSB and a Boeing person took his own photos.  These photos do not become a part of the documentation for the file.  It is quite apparent that TSB & Boeing members have their own collections of photographs of items such as important wires, all of which have not been supplied for inclusion in the database. 

In addition, the examination of each aircraft has to be conducted in an organized manner with each observation recorded and documented.  This was not a method practised by all during this trip.  As well, bias on the part of one of the parties was very evident.  Larry FOGG as the Boeing rep frequently pointed out rather smugly that certain things we found were not original equipment or were not installed at the factory, but were Swissair installed.  Indeed, at one point, he indicated that his on-site rep had told him that it did his heart good to have TSB present with the aircraft undergoing such a massive overhaul.  He said that apparently on previous trips Swissair staff have advised TSB that they do not take wiring and other items apart.  He knew that to be incorrect and it was obvious that they do much more than they indicated by the work now being done on HB-IWU.  There appears to be very much friction between the two companies at various levels which leads to a non-professional atmosphere.  Because of his close professional association with FOGG, FOOT has to constantly be very careful so as not to be seen to have this same bias.  FOOT has expressed his feelings that the crash was due to an electrical cause and that we are unlikely to find that actual cause (wire).  It is felt that should he come up with a wire (as he may do with the AUGER test by means of a clean wire melt), he will not have to show how or why it was caused, just that it was electrical, and TSB will then be gone.

There are test burns that are upcoming.  They are being conducted to create benchmarks and to test the process under conditions that will allow grading of the results. There is a need to thoroughly document all aspects of these tests and to properly take and document any samples from these tests.  If there is to be a blind analysis on the part of Dr. BROWN, they should be conducted by him alone, without interested parties present.  There are too many chances to taint the results if those parties are present. These benchmark tests not only must be, but also must be seen to be completely unbiased and fair.  They must be able to withstand legal scrutiny at a later date.  This process is new to this type of work and this becomes a test of the process (and of Dr. BROWN by association).  As a party to the outcome of this file, it is questionable to have Boeing conduct the actual burn tests.  Surely there are other labs capable of conducting such tests.  It appears that the cost of these tests dictates who conducts them.

(Clarification:)  Later examinaiton of the debris revealed that the fire did not start with the lavs.  As for Fogg, he would later accept my presence and offer much needed valuable assistance and insight into the debris examination.  Fogg was working with amateurs in the TSB when he dealt with Foot and Sidla, and he had not yet come to realize my role in all of this, only that I knew nothing about the aircraft and its equipment.  Over time, his attitude towards me would change, as would my knowledge of the fire debris and the aircraft.



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