Archive for January, 2014

Strange but true general aviation news

Friday, January 31st, 2014

I feel the need…the need for speed. The Daily Mail has posted a heart-pounding video that gives a glimpse of what it’s like to fly an RAF Typhoon jet. During the video, the supersonic jet flew from a low of 250 feet and a high of 40,000 feet

Was Road Runner there too? Kentucky Lt. Gov. Jerry Abramson had a good excuse for being late to a speech before he Greater Owensboro Chamber of Commerce’s Rooster Boosterbreakfast — a coyote on the runway, reports AviationPros.com.  As Abramson’s aircraft was landing at  Owensboro-Daviess County Regional Airport, it had to do a gor-around because of a coyote on the runway.

Do the crime, do the time. John Quinn of Rutland, Vt. pleaded guilty to stealing high-speed carbide drill bits and other aviation-related tools from GE Aviation, reports the Republic. Quinn received more than $108,000 from the proceeds of sales via the Internet.

Happy landings. No one was injured when a small Cessna slid off the runway at Winchester Regional Airport while doing touch-and-go landings, reports the Republic. A small aircraft made an emergency landing in a bean field near Huntland, Tenn., after the engine failed, reports WHNT-TV. No 0ne was injured when a TBM7 made an emergency landing at Sioux Gateway Airport with landing gear issues, reports the Sioux City Journal.

 

Bahamas bound

Thursday, January 30th, 2014

We’ve been having a pretty miserable winter here in the Mid-Atlantic. It’s been weeks of a seemingly endless cycle: snow followed by frigid temperatures followed by winds howling out of the northwest, followed by more snow. Or maybe ice, just to shake things up a little. Somehow, when nobody was looking, Maryland got yanked up by the roots and deposited next to Wisconsin. And those smug Facebook posts from people in the Sunshine State aren’t making things any easier. (You know who you are, people who keep posting that “I love watching winter…from Florida” photo.)

On Friday, 12 airplanes are leaving the extreme cold behind for a few days and going south. But they’re not stopping at the Florida coast for long. They’re headed for the Bahamas.

This is the third Bahamas fly-out organized by Aviation Adventures, a flight school based in Manassas, Va. I’m riding along with Aviation Adventures’ owner Bob Hepp and Ronnie Hepp in the flight school’s Piper Twin Comanche. The rest of the group are making their way in a Diamond DA42, a Cessna 206, three 182s, three 172s, a Piper Arrow, a Beech Bonanza, and a Tecnam Sierra.

We’ll depart Virginia, stop for fuel in South Carolina, and continue to Fort Pierce, where we’ll overnight. AOPA photographer Mike Fizer is joining us there. The next day, we launch for the southern Out Islands, and we’ll stay at Fernandez Bay Village on Cat Island. Its owner, Tony Armbrister, is a pilot.

I’ve been studying the procedures for flying internationally, and between required forms, equipment, and survival gear, it’s a little daunting—but it’s also telling that many of the pilots on this fly-out are repeat customers. I’ll be sharing their experiences and tips for enjoying a stress-free trip to warmer weather in the Reporting Points blog and in a future issue of AOPA Pilot.

In the meantime, stay warm and, yes, I know, I’ve just joined the ranks of those people on Facebook.

Strange but true general aviation news

Friday, January 24th, 2014

But it looked so real! A viral video that allegedly shows a large aircraft crashing into a bridge has been determined as a fake, reports Epoch Times. The video shows the crash, complete with smoke, fire, and a person falling off the bridge.

Cash wasn’t king. Conor Guckian paid $20,000 in cash to charter a private jet for a flight from Nashville to California. The police were tipped off and went to the airport to investigate, reports News Channel 5. When the K-9 unit used dogs to sniff Guckian’s money, they detected a narcotic odor. When they searched the jet, they found another $153,000 in cash.

Let’s go to the video! A New Zealand pilot and his passenger were forced to make an emergency landing on Martin’s Bay Beach after the engine quit, reports AvWeb. After finding and repairing a fuel system blockage and taking off, the aircraft was covered in a spray of water.

Upside down helicopter. Soft snow on a glacier near New Zealand’s Mt Cook caused a helicopter to topple over after a wayward landing, reports the New Zealand Herald. The four tourists aboard were not hurt.

Helicopters to the rescue. A sailor was rescued by the Coast Guard near Piedras Blancas in California after his boat crashed into the rocks, reports the Cambrian. Two men were rescued by a New York Police Department helicopter after they got stuck in the marsh, reports the New York Post.

The importance of a washer

Friday, January 17th, 2014

Now, how important can one little washer be?

Pretty important, as it turns out. While this is not a general aviation incident, the lesson here is dramatically applicable to all of us.

The FAA prepared an analysis of what happened to a China Airlines Boeing 737-800 on August 20, 2007, after landing at Naha Airport on Okinawa, Japan. Watch these two short videos. The first is an animation that explains what happened. Then, watch the second video, which shows the consequences of one missing washer.

That’s about a $90.5 million washer, based on average 2013 Boeing list prices. The 165 people on board were evacuated with no casualties, even though it appears to take about three and a half minutes for fire trucks to arrive. Thanks to my friend Bob Punch for calling this to my attention.

 

Strange but true general aviation news

Friday, January 17th, 2014

The highway became a runway. A pilot and two passengers were forced to make an emergency landing on New York’s Major Deegan Expressway in the Bronx after an engine malfunction, reports NBC New York. No one was injured and the Piper PA had minor damage.

A different interpretation of getting high. Despite an effort to fly under the radar, federal and Lawrence County, Utah, authorities were suspicious of  pilot Ken Barton Burrows, who was detained after landing at New Castle Airport, reports the Ellwood City Ledger. After inspecting his single-engine Cessna, Dept. of Homeland Security officers found 240 lbs of marijuana worth nearly $1.2 million on board.

Ignorance of the law is no excuse. Andrew Decker, says he didn’t know that pointing a laser at a helicopter was dangerous, reports WESH-TV. The teen, who allegedly pointed a laser in in the cockpit of a sheriff’s helicopter as it flew over his neighborhood,  faces a felony charge.

Helicopters to the rescue! Two Tampa police helicopter pilots made a dramatic rescue of a pilot whose airplane had just crashed  as it approached Tampa International Airport, reports the Tampa Bay Times. A California Highway Patrol helicopter rescued a glider pilot who ended up trapped in a 50-foot tree, reports CBS San Francisco.

Good landings.  The Coast Guard rescued two passengers after their airplane went down off the coast near California’s Catalina Island, reports KPCC Radio. A pilot was not injured after he made an emergency landing of his ultralight aircraft in a field in Odessa, Texas, reports the Odessa American.

Strange but true general aviation news

Friday, January 10th, 2014

He could have just used skates. Helicopter pilot Bradley Friesen has defended a stunt where he “skated” his aircraft between two groups of players in Canada’s North Shore Mountains and shot video of it, reports CTV News. He defended the stunt, saying that the video had been “carefully staged” with proper safety briefings.

Do the crime, do the time. Commercial aircraft restoration group B-25 Group, LLC has agreed to pay the government $55,000 after removing parts from an F-82 Twin Mustang that crashed in Fairbanks, Alaska back in 1950, reports the Daily News-Miner. The agreement ends five years of litigation.

It’s all about survival. A pilot and two passengers managed to make an emergency landing at Montana’s Glacier Park International Airport after icing caused the airplane to stall, reports the Spokesman-Review. No one was injured when a private jet with country singer Dwight Yokam made an emergency landing after the pilot reported a fire in the Hawker 800, reports TheBoot.com.

Helicopter rescues. After a series of explosions at the construction side of a student housing complex in downtown Kingston, Ontario, a helicopter operated by the Royal Canadian Air Force rescued a crane operator trapped in the fire, reports AvWeb. A man who was kicked off a mountain in Puerto Rico by a goat was rescued by a Coast Guard helicopter, reports ABC News.