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An engine failure on takeoff is a tough spot to find yourself in. We're going to look at 2 Scenarios:
- Engine Failure With Runway Remaining
- Engine Failure Without Runway Remaining
The first is engine failure with runway remaining. The one thing that you need to understand is that, if you were to have an engine failure on take-off, you’re already low and slow.
The moment you take away that thrust, your airspeed will drop like a rock. Your number one priority is to get that nose over. If there’s runway remaining, you just put the aircraft right back on the runway you just took off on.
If this is a scenario you haven’t practiced yet, then go out and find the longest strip you can and practice with an instructor. Takeoff and climb to about 100 feet and smoothly bring the power back to idle. You’ll notice how quickly you’ll lose airspeed and altitude. Push the nose over and put your aircraft back on the runway. It’s going to happen so fast that you may not even realize it. The main thing is getting that nose over!
In these scenarios, there is no time for a checklist. Instead, it is a matter of muscle memory which means having that flow check memorized. Be prepared ahead of time. Here are some more important points to remember:
Airspeed Is King. Get The Nose Down!
If You Have Time, Make a Radio Call.
The Most Important Matter Is To FLY THAT AIRPLANE!
ENGINE FAILURE ON TAKE OFF W/OUT RUNWAY REMAINING...
The first thing to remember when encountering an engine failure on takeoff without runway remaining is DO NOT attempt a turn back to the runway. This is called the impossible turn. Think of it this way... If you’re under 1000 feet, turning back to the runway is not an option.
You are low, slow and at a high angle of attack without any thrust. Without regard to these factors, some people think that they’ll just do a 180 degree turn back to the runway. Attempting a 180 degree turn back to the runway in that situation will put you on a downwind!!!
You have to make a 230 to 240 degree turn to get back around in order to have a shot at even making airport property let alone getting back on the runway. Under 1000ft AGL turning back is not an option.
What you’re going to and should do in this scenario is to land straight ahead inside of your 60 degree window. You only have 30 degrees to the left and right to pick from. You’re basically just going straight ahead. Again, the most important thing in this situation is to fly the airplane. If you have a chance to make a radio call, that’s great. In any case, simply focus on flying that airplane.
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