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Flashcards in Aircraft Accident Investigation Deck (22):
0

Many plastics and other organic materials used in aircraft interiors give off a particularly hazardous gas when burned. Select the name of the that gas from the following list:
a) Chlorine
b) Hydrogen Sulfide
c) Hydrogen Cyanide
d) Vinyl Chloride

c) Cyanide is derived from certain commonly used plastics and other organic materials in cabin fixtures and furnishings. Especially productive of cyanide are polyurethane (seat cushions, carpet pads, hat rack structures), acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (passenger service unit window structures), modacrylics (dust panes) and wool (seat upholstery).

1

Over a several year time period, a series of fatal traffic accidents occur at a busy airport which is normally considered to be safe. A variety of general aviation aircraft types are involved, and pilot experience levels range from several hundred to thousands of hours flying time. With this limited information, what is the most likely cause?
a) pilot proficiency factors
b) physical factors affecting the aviators
c) Mechanical factors involving the aircraft
d) Environmental factors causing spatial disorientation

d) Environmental factors causing spatial disorientation
(multiple aircraft, multiple experience levels, varying times)

2

What percentage of fatally injured aircraft occupants of structurally survivable general aviation accidents have demonstrated head trauma?

80%

3

Evidence that burning interior furnishings add to the hazards of occupants escaping from the postcrash fire in large aircraft is probably best reflected by which of the following?
a) Witnesses who attest to the melting and burning of interior materials.
b) The post crash finding of frothy ashes on oxidized metallic parts
c) The finding of hydrogen cyanide in the blood and tissues of accident victims.
d) Blackening of the trachea of accident victims
e) The observance of flash over in the burning cabin as the fire progressed.

c) The finding of hydrogen cyanide in the blood and tissues of accident victims

4

The most frequent cause of fatal general aviation aircraft accidents as cited by the NTSB is "failed to obtain/maintain flying speed". The second most frequent cause relates to which of the following:
a) Inadequate flight preparation
b) Alcohol impairment of the pilot's ability to control the aircraft.
c) Mismanagement of fuel
d) Improper maintenance on engine
e) Continuation of VFR flight into adverse weather and incurring spatial disorientation.

e) Continuation of VFR flight into adverse weather and incurring spatial disorientation

5

It is often difficult to determine at the time of post-crash investigation whether or not coronary artery disease caused the fatal event by pilot incapacitation. The most incontrovertible evidence, although circumstantial, is which of the following?
a) History of the flight
b) Absence of signs of cardiovascular disease in the pilot's medical record.
c) Presence of signs of coronary artery disease at post mortem.
d) Statement of a survivor's observations.

d) Statement of a survivor's observations.

6

As the flight surgeon member on the aircraft accident investigation team of an international airline involved in a fatal accident, one of your tasks is to supervise the identification of deceased crewmembers and passengers. You are under considerable pressure by your company and local foreign officials to expedite the identification of the deceased in order for a speedy delivery of remains to the next of kin. Identification may require the use of all available objective information comparing antemortem with postmortem characteristics. Rank, in the order of importance, the objective information necessary for the identification of remains.
1. Dental records and xrays
2. Photographs, ID cards, personal effects and jewelry
3. Finger and footprint records
4. Marks, scars, hair
5. Unique objective physical characteristics such as permanent orthopedic or surgical hardware.

3. Fingerprints and footprints are first
1. Dental records and xrays are next
5. Unique objective physical characteristics such as permanent orthopedic devices or surgical hardware
All else is presumptive or tentative.

7

In investigating an aircraft accident the investigator should consider a blood CO level as "significant" when it reaches what level?
a) Any level of CO in the blood
b) 2% saturation
c) 6% saturation
d) 10% saturation

d) 10% saturation. A smoker could have up to 6-8% CO levels.

8

Human factors in aircraft accidents include such areas as physical disability, errors of judgment, crew coordination, man-machine interface. Although sources and statistics vary, crew-human factor elements appear to be responsible for what percentage of aircraft accidents?
a) 0 to 20%
b) 21 to 40%
c) 41 to 60%
d) 61 to 80%

c) 41 to 60%.

9

What specific organization or group is held responsible by federal law for determining the cause of all US civil aircraft accidents?
a) The Department of Transportation
b) The Aircraft Accident Investigation Branch of the FAA
c) National Transportation Safety Board
d) The Department of Transportation- Federal Aviation Administration Conjoint Task Force on Aviation Accident Investigation

c) National Transportation Safety Board

10

With regard to birdstrikes, the species considered to be the greatest hazard to aircraft and to air safety is:
a) hawks
b) ducks
c) seagulls
d) geese
e) eagles

D) Geese.

11

An airplane accident is suspected as having been caused by altitude hypoxia. Which of the following statements is correct as related to postmortem chemical analysis?
a) Chemical analysis is no help in determining hypoxia as a cause of the accident.
b) Central nervous system levels of lactic acid greater than 200mg/100ml are always associated with hypoxia.
c) Central nervous system levels of lactic acid greater than 200mg/100ml are usually associated with hypoxia provided the hemoglobin is greater than 15gm%.
d) Central nervous system levels of lactic acid greater than 200mg/100ml are usually associated with hypoxia provided hyperglycemia is not present.

D). An elevated lactic acid level in the central nervous system is a useful test to confirming antemortem hypoxia. However, it can be elevated in hyperglycemia as well.

12

One aspect of the medical investigation of aircraft accidents is the identification of any and all victims. Which of the following statements is true concerning such identification and the subsequent issuance of death certificates?
a) The death certificate may be issued for all persons proven to be aboard the aircraft and not surviving, regardless of identification.
b) The medical examiners legal authority to issue a death certificate is based on his ability to identify some part of the body coupled with evidence that the person is dead.
c) Federal law allws victims of disasters to undergo internment or cremation even though no death certificate has been issued.
d) The Uniform Absent Persons Act does not apply to victims of disasters. Thus the presumptive evidence that the individual was aboard the aircraft and not one of the survivors, is sufficient for the coroner to declare the victims legally dead and issue a death certificate.

b) The medical examiners legal authority to issue a death certificate is based on his ability to identify some part of the body coupled with evidence that the person is dead. Whenever the coroner or medical examiner cannot issue a death certificate, the Uniform Absent Persons Act applies. The issuance of the death certificate must be based on actual evidence that the person is dead. Under the Uniform Absent Persons Act, the court will appoint a receiver (of the individuals possessions) after evidence is presented that the person's absence is established. After a period of five to seven years, more evidence may be presented and the court may make a determination regarding the presumption that death has occurred.

13

According to the National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration, inflight cardiovascular incapacitation constituted approximately what proportion of the documented fatal general aviation accidents?
a) one percent
b) five percent
c) eight percent
d) twelve percent
e) fifteen percent

a) one percent.

14

You are involved in the investigation of a general aviation, light plane crash. Your findings reveal that the crash forces were minimal, and certainly survivable, and yet the pilot received a fatal injury due to head trauma. You conclude that a shoulder restraint would have prevented this injury and recommend that all light aircraft built from this day on should be equipped with shoulder hardnesses. How many years would it be before all aircraft would have shoulder restraints (what is the serviceable average life of general aviation aircraft already in the fleet?).
a) 5 years
b) 10 years
c) 15 years
d) 20 years

d) 20 years. Any recommendation that does not require retrofitting aircraft will take at least 20 years to before fully implemented due to the serviceable life of the average aircraft.

15

Many plastics and other organic materials used in aircraft interiors give off a particularly hazardous gas when burned. Select the name of that gas from the follow list:
a) Chlorine
b) Hydrogen sulfide
c) Hydrogen cyanide
d) Vinyl Chloride

c) Hydrogen cyanide

16

In the analysis of survivability factors and injury patterns in a commercial aviation accident, it is important to organize descriptions of the trauma suffered by the aircraft's occupants. Which of the following injury severity schemes is the most appropriate?
a) Abbreviated Injury Scale (AIS)
b) Injury Severity Score (ISS)
c) International Classification of Diseases (ICD-9)
d) Base Deficit

b) Injury Severity Score. The use of the injury severity ratings is a powerful tool for analyzing the medical consequences of transportation related trauma. AIS is necessary to determine the ISS. So although both are needed, the ISS takes all the multisystem injuries into account.

17

What are the five phases of an aircraft investigation?

1) Preliminary evaluation and planning
2) Data collection
3) Data analysis
4) Conclusion
5) Recommendations

18

The Human Factors Analysis and Classification System construct uses what 5 guiding principles?

1) Aviation is similar in nature to other complex systems
2) Human errors are inevitable within such a system
3) Blaming errors on the pilots is like blaming mechanical failure on the aircraft
4) An accident, no matter how minor, is a failure of the system
5) Accident investigation and error prevention go hand-in-hand.

19

Human factors are causal in what percentage of aircraft accidents?

40 to 60%

20

Studies of aircraft accidents over the past decades consistently lists "pilot error" as the cause in about 70% of the accidents. The best approach to improving this situation should be based on which of the following premise?
a) pilots continue to do things incorrectly. Additional training on flight procedures and the operation of aircraft systems is required.
b) flight training should put increased emphasis on topics such as motivation.
c) Accident rates will only decrease when cockpit voice recorders and video system are included in aircraft so we can see what they are doing.
d) Selection procedures for aviation personnel must be continually improved to identify "error prone" individuals.
e) Pilots should be considered as one of many components of a total flight management system. Attention then should be given to the pilot's actions and to those system features (control design, information presentation, etc) that might have led the pilot to improper action.

e) An accident generally is attributed to pilot error when no aircraft malfunction is noted and no obvious feature (weather, etc) appears to be at fault.

21

Aircraft mishap and incident investigations are a key component in an aviation safety program because:
a) mishap investigations are usually simple and to the point
b) maintenance error and material failures are the most frequent causal factors.
c) lessons learned provide a basis for prevention programs.
d) the flight surgeon or AME need investigate only the possible human factors involved.
e) mishaps are the primary method we have for determining safety needs or failures.

c) Lessons learned provide a basis for prevention programs.