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"We are the protagonists of our stories called life, and there is no limit to how high we can fly."


Type rated on A330, B747-400, B747, B757, B767, B737, B727. International Airline Pilot / Author / Speaker. Dedicated to giving the gift of wings to anyone following their dreams. Supporting Aviation Safety through training, writing, and inspiration.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Experience Needed

 I received this message, attached to the following recount of an accident.

"This happened this morning in KPWT (Bremerton WA).  Names have been removed.  While I am not certain, I am willing to bet that said "Ferry Crew", and I use the term as loosely and derisively as possible, was more than likely one of these 500 hour wonders who offer to "ferry" for free to build time.  Well, so much for at least one jackass's airline aspirations.  

You get what you pay for.   

The lowest bidder is very rarely the best choice.  When will people start to understand this.  This guy buys a 100k airplane, and wants to save a couple hundred dollars on an experienced crew.  Unfortunately this isn't limited to the little planes, I see the same crap from idiots that want to fly 737s for cheap or free half way around the world.  I don't see plumbers coming to your house for free to "build time".  Don't work for FREE and more importantly, don't hire those that offer to do so.  Rant over"

____________________

Hello to all,

I spent the better part of this morning looking for accelerated aluminum particle damage to aircraft in the hangar and on the ramp. A Cessna 172 took the brunt as it had the unfortunate proximity to the particle accelerator (I never knew that aluminum and steel could have such a severe reaction to each other). A broken windshield, passenger window and various skin dings to the Cessna was the worst to any of the recipient aircraft.

 

The hangar (the steel in the equation) lost a plastic window with frame and some door panels. A portion of aluminum was found on the ramp around a 100 yards away. Unfortunately Raytheon has discovered (yea I know it is Hawker now, but they don't fit my story for you pilot types, so shut up!) better ways to accelerate uranium and cause more damage. I mean that said velocity inducer is no longer in production and am afraid that the once pristine machine will head for salvage...

 
So as Paul Harvey used to say "Now for the rest of the story"

 
The Baron had been in our care for years, owned by a loving "Heavy" driver and if there was a problem with the girl, the response was "Fix It!". Sadly the circle of life was completed and a new owner found in Texas. Apparently the aircraft was removed from its hangar by the ferry crew, tried to start and did not due to a dead battery. We "jump" started it, brought it down to the maintenance hangar, put a charger on and it seemed to be "happy" at 5:30 pm last night. Around 6:00 am this morning the ferry crew tried to start the RH engine (enough battery to prime, but not to start), decided to "hand prop" the bugger and move on with no one at the controls...



Brakes set, Throttle WELL ADVANCED, "HOT" mags, hydrocarbon vapors coursing through the induction system with sufficient oxygen for stoichiometric combustion...
 HMMMMMM...the three sides of fire; FUEL, OXYGEN, HEAT (spark, yes just a Little one as the snap of the impulse coupling is heard, I think the declaration would be "OH SHIT") .

 

 

Anyway the RH engine drug her around to the right as it was parallel to the hangar, prop hit the window frame scattering shrapnel, pushed the hull up on the left wheel loading it laterally and breaking the trunion causing it to collapse, while the nose strut received a lateral "shot" also (torn sheet metal on nose bowl and tunnel). 


Both wings, fuselage and tail feathers on LH side are wrinkled, RH engine blew the starter off the adapter (I first saw a snap ring on the ground and thought "that's from the starter adapter", retaining a bearing and then it was "No way is that what I think it is, it has to be from the collapsed strut!), broken engine mount legs. She rattled so hard that two of the radios in the panel started backing out of their trays...just plain or is that plane ugly!

 

The good news is that neither of the ferry crew were with a scratch! Fuel load was all she could take (100 plus gallons) and no fire!!! What looks like dirt, is absorbent from the fire department to contain the leaking fuel.

Interesting commentary. What do you think?   
How do you build time to get the experience needed? 

Enjoy the Journey!
XO Karlene  

20 comments:

  1. I think this was an imbecile accident. Things like that makes me mad.

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    1. Yes... and there are so many imbeciles out there in the world. I am so glad you aren't one of them! And it's a shame they point a finger at inexperience. Maybe it's pure stupidity. :)

      Delete
  2. I certainly agree with the sentiment that offering your time for free, as this very crew may have, is professionally unsound. But the lessons would seem to me to be less about the (guessed?) identity and experience level of the crew than about the human factors that led to this completely avoidable accident.
    Experience breeds complacency with the same result as lack of knowledge. There are few opportunities for less experienced pilots, true, but trying to accellerate the process of learning by undercutting those around you is harmful to both parties.

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    1. Jonathan, you make an excellent point... experience and complacency, or inexperienced and just didn't know. I think we've seen many accidents on the complacent side too.

      We should never undercut anything that will degrade training.

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  3. Hi, Karlene!

    I really don't see a connection between this mishap and "experience". Aeronautical experience is not a cure for poor aeronautical decision making. These individuals were, in the words of the esteemed Doc Atkinson, "Stuck on stupid."

    I see all sorts of hazardous attitudes in evidence here. You've got 'Invulnerability', 'Macho Behavior', and 'Impulsivity' in spades. I have to wonder if this was one of those, "Hold my beer and watch this!" moments.

    The attitudes that cause this sort of mishap will not be ameliorated by experience...they require lots of recurrent training (or committed self-study) that goes well beyond stick-and-rudder skills.

    The people that caused this could have benefited from reading (and taking to heart) Dr. Tony Kern's Redefining Airmanship. Too late now.

    Best regards,

    Frank

    PS: I'm not affiliated with Dr. Kern in any way...just very impressed by his work.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Frank, I've seen all sorts of attitudes and behaviors that go with them as well. Thank you so much for your great comment. I just added Dr. Kern's book to my list on Amazon. From what I read, I think this is something all pilots should read. Thank you for introducing me to it!

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  4. You don't hand prop a ME without anyone in the cockpit, that's just stupid. Stupid people does stupid things, and this don't neccessary have do with number of hours in the logbook. I agree with Frank that this misshap smells like an attitude problem.

    I understand pilots that works for free to build time. They have spent a lot of monay they don't have just to make their dream come true. And when they have the ticket there is almost impossible to get employed. I don't think it's right, but as long as employers take advantage of this it will continue. I think it's called supply and demand...

    / Staffan

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    Replies
    1. Stupid people do stupid things and we just can't beat the stupid out of them. And I too know how desperate pilots will be to build their hours. But you hit it on the head... integrity of the employer. Pay them. The person who sent this to me is one such person.

      Delete
  5. Yes. It is said, "Once is a mistake; twice is stupid." I don't know what these people (I will refrain from the term 'pilots' for now) were thinking.

    The damage to that aircraft is a reflection of what the state of their flying careers will now be.

    All I can say is I love my flight instructor.

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    Replies
    1. Jeremy, I am so glad you have a great instructor. I love him too. He's pretty awesome. Yes... twice is very stupid.
      Sometimes using people as examples of what not to do in life is beneficial too!

      Delete
  6. Sure these folks are stupid. Everybody knows you can’t log time unless you are behind the yoke. They threw away a minute of multi-engine time because no one was behind the yoke. If you do something and it doesn’t work. You have got to try something else. But never, ever give up flight time. Ha ha.

    I am glad that no one was hurt in this incident.

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    1. Lol... Oh this was so funny. You know, this totally lacks judgement. Who would not be in that seat for that minute? What were they thinking? Oh yeah, they weren't.

      Delete
  7. Hand propping a Baron? Geez! Even if it worked it's very dangerous. Not exactly a 65hp Cub!
    Hand propping anything is dancing with death, and you had better know EXACTLY what you're doing (specific training from an expert) before attempting on your own.

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    Replies
    1. Just goes to show you that truth "is" stranger than fiction. One has to wonder... why?

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  8. Wow, I don't even know what to say. I think the previous comments all sum it up pretty well.

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  9. Being a confirmed UNdaredevil, I was never tempted to prop a plane. Guess I wouldn't have been very helpful to the Wright brothers.

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    1. I'm totally gutless (or smart) at heart... but I would never prop start a plane. We're on the same team.

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  10. Author said she "was not certain but willing to bet". Unfortunately she did not have the details and probably slandered an innocent pilot. Having some knowledge of said incident the facts are wrong.

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    1. I did not take this as a slanderous article. The person who sent it to me was familiar with the incident.

      The point of sharing these things is not to "slander" an innocent pilot. As you see there is no name attached.

      The point of sharing information, and why we look at incidents and accidents... is to learn from them so they don't happen again. The point is... don't do this.

      If we can prevent a mishap, we should all be on board with that.

      Thanks for your comment!

      Delete

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