777 Loses Electrics, Lands Heavy In Brazil

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The Aviation Herald is reporting that a TAM Boeing 777-300 made a successful but dramatic emergency landing in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, on Wednesday. Flight 8084, with more than 350 people on board, was still on the climb on its way to London when it experienced an almost total electrical failure shortly after takeoff from Sao Paulo, about 300 miles southwest. The lack of electrics made it impossible to jettison fuel so overheated brakes on the fully loaded widebody caused all the tires to deflate on landing. Belo Horizonte is a major regional city and its airport has a 10,000-foot runway so the crew headed there. There were no injuries and the plane had only minor damage.

The lights went out less than an hour into the flight and the crew was left with only VHF radio, emergency lighting and a few cockpit displays powered by the emergency ram air turbine. The crew essentially made a night VFR approach and landing with some vectoring help from ATC. The flight crew met with passengers after they were safely in the terminal and answered questions.