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Home > Emergencies > Do the brakes of a plane ever fail?
Do the brakes of a plane ever fail?
Flying - Emergencies
Thursday, 07 March 2013 05:55

Boeing 777 Rejected Takeoff Test

Hi Capt Lim

So I know that if the engine of a plane stopped working it would glide.

Do the brakes of the plane ever go through any technical difficulties?

Also, I just recently watched a movie called "FLIGHT" and it began with a plane crashing because someone was careless in preparing the plane before flight.

Does that ever really happen in real life?

Jennifer

Hi Jennifer,

There is an adage in Murphy's Law which states that: "Anything that can go wrong will go wrong". So it is not surprising that the possibility of brake failures on a plane can arise. However, the chances of it happening are very slim, just like the possibility of such a fault in your car!

It is for this reason, for greater safety, there are at least 2 back-ups in the event of the main brake failure on a plane. For instance, on an Airbus A330 plane, when the main hydraulics that control the brake fails, braking is still available using the alternate braking system.

When the alternate system fails, the last resort is the emergency braking that comes from the accumulators and guarantee to stop the plane with up to 7 brake applications.

There you go – there are 2 backups in the event of the main brake failure on the plane!

Incidentally, my next article in the Travel 3Sixty magazine for April 2013 will be featuring this movie, FLIGHT. I will be discussing, generally on the unrealistic portrayal of what an airline pilot does in that movie. Watch out in this column Pilot’s Perspective here  that has also all the previous articles.

PS. To check for any latest updates or postings, you can follow my new Twitter at @CaptKHLim


FLIGHT (2012) TRAILER

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to be a commercial pilot
Hello sir, I would like to be a commercial pilot. But, it seems that there are to many pilots now in the aviation industry. So how do I overcome this problem. Pls advice. Thank you
kaasvin , 30 Dec, 2013

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