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A safe return after a bird strike in Villahermosa

According to Aviation Herald, on May 23, 2022, a Viva Aerobus A321-200N, departing from Villahermosa to Mexico City (Mexico), was accelerating for takeoff from RWY 08 when the left-hand engine ingested a bird and received damage. The crew continued takeoff, climbed the aircraft to 2,000 ft and returned to Villahermosa for a safe landing on RWY 08 about 15 minutes after departure.

Video source: infobae

Checking the ADS-B data from the flight, we can confirm the procedure adopted by the crew, which involved a left turn to intercept VSA VOR at the minimum holding altitude, which is 2,000 ft.

It is curious to think over why the crew decided for a left turn, i.e. around the damaged engine, instead of the opposite, which is usually advisable.

  • Firstly, we could imagine about the engine-out procedure. As there is no significant terrain in Villahermosa (VSA-MMVA), though, no turn procedure is required due to obstacle clearance.

  • If we take a look on MMVA approach charts, we can note that missed approach procedure for RWY 08 is as bellow:

Climb outbound on VSA VOR R-086 to D7.0, then turn RIGHT within 10 NM to VSA VOR at the minimum holding altitude.

MMVA Approach Chart sample
ILS DME 1 or LOC Rwy 08 (source: Jeppesen)
  • Lastly, the one reason that could have led to the left turn, was the crew deciding to follow the SID (most probably VILLAHERMOSA 3A, as their destination was towards West), already set in the FMS, and hence avoiding increasing the workload while deciding further actions.

Despite above considerations, that are just curiosity, the important is that the aircraft returned for a safe land with no casualties.

Any thoughts? Was that the right decision? Was A-N-C (Aviate, Navigate, Communicate) followed? Let us know in the comments!


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