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  #11  
Old 11-01-2014, 10:52 PM
Bevan Bevan is offline
 
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While the accident rate (per hours flown) for amateur built is reportedly still higher (as I recall) than certified singles, I would tend to surmise that our RV's, with their exceptional takeoff performance, "can" get us to a safe altitude relative quickly, and while remaining closer to the airport of departure until that safe altitude is reached. With practice, discipline and possibly technology (AOA), we "should" have a better chance of a successful return to the runway than other sub-categories of single engine aircraft. No question the desire to return is strong. This is all theory of course. Paul describes the standard tried and true, but not always possible.

Perhaps the reason that the desire to return to runway is so strong (perhaps stronger than in the past) is because, there is ever more builtup areas encroaching on airports limiting our options, some airplanes becoming faster requiring improved runways for safe operations, and in the case of amateur built, there is a strong sentimental connection to the safety of our aircraft.

Therefore, each of us and each takeoff scenario can benefit from a pre-determined plan of action based on many factors.

Bevan
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  #12  
Old 11-01-2014, 11:24 PM
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Ironflight Ironflight is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by agirard7a View Post
Paul, Kevin, what does one do when landing
straight requires you land in a populated, congested
area?
This might sound flip until you think about it - but how about picking a different runway - or even different airport?

Flying safely is about always giving yourself options. If you have no choice, you are along for the ride. Good risk management starts long before you start the engine, or are sitting at the end of the runway. If you have a single engine, it can fail - what are you going to do? The time to manage that risk is before you are committed to a bad option.

Yes - there are airports I won't go in to - and runways I won't use. I don't consider the turn back to be an option in powered aircraft because the record is so abysmally bad. I also don't buy lottery tickets, and even though I live in Nevada, I haven't set foot in a casino in years.

If I am pattern altitude, a loss of power is just a power-off landing - but initial climb is not a place to mess around.
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  #13  
Old 11-02-2014, 04:19 AM
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kjelle69 kjelle69 is offline
 
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I found this, seems to be a good document regarding the issue:

http://www.gofir.com/aviation_accide...ne_failure.pdf

So, if pattern altitude is reached, say 500-1000 ft gnd, I really think that turning around is an option. I have tried this at 5000 ft and it seems that I loose about 500 ft in a controlled turn, (Engine at idle). Now to furthermore improve the situation if the altitude is as high as say, 1000 ft, which of the options in the attached picture ( in the first post) would you choose? Is number three the best option?
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  #14  
Old 11-02-2014, 05:46 AM
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RV10inOz RV10inOz is offline
 
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Kevin, I do not recall the exact numbers, but the deal breaker is not ICO anyway, it is pulling the prop right back. And that is mandatory as part of the sequence. (Again, for anyone thinking about this do it at altitude and learn what actually happens). A fixed pitch prop is another matter, you will need to test that to determine the prop speed that equals the airspeed without assisting.

While I think of it, how many folk fly gliders and what teachings are there about rope breaks etc. They do turn backs all the time. They do it at my field with traffic all over the place. And they do it from very low altitudes. But before someone jumps up and down and says they are gliders etc etc. think about it. We are all gliders just with different glide ratio's and best glide speeds.

Think about this?.we should all be treating each take off like a glider pilot, expecting the rope to break at the worst times plus or minus a bit, and then be delighted when it does not.


Paul,
I really do have immense respect for folk with far greater stick and rudder skills than I do, I have never met you or guys like Doung Rozendahl but I have friends in your skill set, and this is where I have learned so much.

I agree, the statistics show a high number (not all) who do it and stuff up do not survive, but I will bet you (and I bet I have spent far less or equal on gambling than you ) that those who died had never actually trained for what they ultimately screwed up. How many Shuttle landings were screwed up first time in the sim, and how many on the runway and why?

The secret here is knowing what you can and can't do. The problem is some think they can do it and can't and they populate the statistics, so you are always in a far better situation knowing you can't make it and not doing so. You said it yourself if you are at pattern altitude you will, is that because you know or just assume? OK so you will, but do you know that is enough from upwind as different from end of down wind? Perhaps that is quite achievable for your plane, but what if it isn't and you are wrong because you don't know. Unless you do it you will never know. You will be further from the field for a start, but maybe not depending on winds. So many variables, yet there are so many options available if you fly the aeroplane all the way into the crash and know what you can make and what you can't, and this could change all the way through the emergency landing, even if landing straight ahead.

One more point, you mention
Quote:
Practice all you want - unless you have experienced a real emergency, you don't know how you'll react.
This applies equally to straight ahead landings. People have screwed these up too when they should not have and them and their pax have died. Is that OK though?

Know your aeroplane. Be trained and prepared to not just accept only dead ahead, when a survivable off field landing at 90 degrees might be the best option.

This is always dragged back to landing on the departure runway, these discussions should actually be about knowing what you can do and being able to do it.

A 74 year old motor racing friend, ex QF B747 check and trainer and GA fanatic once said to me?."if you only think you can, you can't. You have to know you can." That applies to flying, emergency landings, racing cars, brain surgery?.or flying space shuttles. This topic is the same. And the warning here is this, if you think you can?you can't. You have to know.
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  #15  
Old 11-02-2014, 06:03 AM
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Kevin Horton Kevin Horton is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by agirard7a View Post
Paul, Kevin, what does one do when landing
straight requires you land in a populated, congested
area?

Personally, if practiced in knowing ones airplane and altitude limits, turning back
may be a "luckier" option than landing in someone's back yard,
school yard, or a crowded parking lot.

I'm not saying landing straight in wouldn't be a safer
option. If open space is available.
If there isn?t enough altitude to safely turn, you land on a street.

Turn back practice you?ve done with idle doesn?t tell you much about how the glide performance will be with engine failed, nor what the pilot performace will be when this a big surprise. Your time delay and overall performance will be much, much worse than during practice when you knew the event was coming.

There is nothing wrong with turning after an engine failure, if altitude permits, but don?t get fixated on a turn all the way back to the runway. Be prepared to stop turning and land straight ahead once you get to low altitude.

Even landing on the airfield, but off runway is likely better than a landing off airport. Anyone on the airport who saw the event will be able to get to you much quicker if you are on the airport than on the other side of the fence.

But, keep in mind that landing into wind gives the slowest groundspeed at touchdown, and the kinetic energy to disappate after impact goes up with the square of the groundspeed. Even a five kt wind will give difference in kinetic energy into wind vs downwind of 40% or more.
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  #16  
Old 11-02-2014, 06:24 AM
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riseric riseric is offline
 
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Default My 2 cents

Not wanting to re-teach some basic flying theories to anyone but having done in excess of 2000 hours of instruction in single engine airplanes, here are a few things to ponder about attempting to turn back after an engine failure.

First, I completely agree with Paul Dye, unless you have 800-1000 ft AGL, your chances of success will be very slim, in spite of being very tempting to do...!!!

I have demonstrated this multiple times to students at low altitude after take-off.

- At 400-500 ft AGL, if straight ahead if not too good, a 45?- 60? or up to 90? turn might be an option to miss buildings, water or other unfriendly stuff.

- If the engine failure is total, two main things happen that are different from practicing with an idling engine: your sink rate will be greater and with no idling propeller, you have a lot less wash on the tail, meaning a less reactive stick and rudder.
Surprise, surprise when time comes to flare...

- Wind: don't forget this guy...
With light to nil wind, you will travel further from the runway. and no tail wind to "push" you closer to the runway.
With stronger winds, ok you'll be closer to runway's end in the climb, but downwind this 10-15 knot tail wind will have you eat up runway like crazy if you make it.

- "the turn": It will not be a 180? turn. When that 180 is done, well you're not lined up with the runway... Another 25 to 40? might be necessary, meaning more time (that you don't have) and yet another turn the other way to align with the runway. The more the wind, the more you have to turn...
That's a lot more turning that what's normally thought, encouraging steeper bank angles with all the risks that brings along.

Then the "slip": when turning towards the runway, the wind will push you towards the runway right? At low altitude, this will induce a visual effect letting you think that you're slipping inwards, prompting some extra rudder in the turn.
And the stronger the wind, the greater this visual effect will be.
At low speed, this is a call to induce a stall on the inboard wing resulting in a spin...

Try to always climb at best rate until your at least at pattern altitude.

So take this for what it's worth. Just advice and things to think about when preparing to take off...
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  #17  
Old 11-02-2014, 06:33 AM
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Kevin Horton Kevin Horton is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RV10inOz View Post
While I think of it, how many folk fly gliders and what teachings are there about rope breaks etc. They do turn backs all the time. They do it at my field with traffic all over the place. And they do it from very low altitudes. But before someone jumps up and down and says they are gliders etc etc. think about it. We are all gliders just with different glide ratio's and best glide speeds.

Think about this?.we should all be treating each take off like a glider pilot, expecting the rope to break at the worst times plus or minus a bit, and then be delighted when it does not.
The glider guys have a couple of big advantages over us:
  1. Their glide performance after a rope break is exactly the same as the glide performance on every other landing. With our aircraft, the glide performance after engine failure is worse than anything we ever see during normal flight.
  2. Gliders have much lower stall speed, so even if they screw it up they're more likely to survive the accident.
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  #18  
Old 11-02-2014, 07:44 AM
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JPalese JPalese is offline
 
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Default Practice practice practice

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ironflight View Post

Practice all you want - unless you have experienced a real emergency, you don't know how you'll react.
I have to take an exception to Paul's comment, which I referenced above. Paul's comment is accurate unless you are trained properly.

How you react during an emergency IS a product of your training.

The entire point of training is to build muscle memory so that when the *!$% hits the fan your response will be programmed into your being.

Under stress the sympathetic portion of your (our) nervous system takes over and puts your (our) ability to process information and think rationally on hold. A flight or flight response is activated and unless you have muscle memory properly programmed ahead of time, the "deer in the headlights" response takes over.

In order to properly program muscle memory it takes 3 to 5 thousand repetitions of an activity, and then it takes frequent practice to maintain that memory programming.

That is why in aviation there are checklists, procedures, and things that must be committed to rote memory - it helps program our muscle memory so we can properly react in an emergency.

So the point of my comment is that proper training and frequent practice can and do make a difference. How you react in an emergency situation depends on your training.
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  #19  
Old 11-02-2014, 08:34 AM
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Paul Tuttle Paul Tuttle is offline
 
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Having had an engine failure, I found the experience is similar to what I'm called to do on the job as a firefighter. You are faced with an immediate critical problem and you have to make rapid effective decisions and intervene to create the best possible outcome. I say best possible outcome because many times it's not the ideal ending where everyone goes home without loss or injury. As stated in a previous post, training will carry you through. The real trick is keeping your head in the game and determining rapidly if the reality of the event is as severe as the perception you have of it. When you know what you are faced with, then you make the decisions based on the level of training you have received. If you are well trained, those decisions will more often lead to the best possible outcome.

Oh yeah, there's some luck involved in the whole thing to.
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  #20  
Old 11-02-2014, 08:49 AM
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scrollF4 scrollF4 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JPalese View Post
I have to take an exception to Paul's comment, which I referenced above. Paul's comment is accurate unless you are trained properly.

How you react during an emergency IS a product of your training.
I concur with J.
There's a sort of mantra common in the F-16 community: Never pass up a perfectly good opportunity to practice an SFO...a simulated flame-out approach. F-16s suffer the same limitation common among RVs: They have only one engine. Thus, Viper pilots practice SFOs on nearly every sortie. Executing an SFO becomes nearly Pavlovian, which has significantly increased the percentage of successful recoveries among the very few F-16 engine failure events that occur. That's the same reason we hammer down on Boldface/CAPs and Memory Items procedures. I still remember the F-4 Boldfaces, like the Abort procedure (Throttles-Idle, Chute-Deploy, Hook-Down). Practice practice practice!

I agree with Ironflight in that, if at all possible, the pilot's statistical chances of survival are far better if you can land straight ahead. As for me, I give myself at least 1000'AGL before I even consider turning back to the runway. If I'm at my home drome, I try to practice this (with the pattern empty of course). If I'm cross country, I talk to the FBO first to discover their known engine-out landing spots, doing a little preflight study for landing areas around the runway and prebuilding my plan. Google Earth's satellite view is awesome for this, but remember that the photo may show a nice green field: Today, that field may be plowed and unlandable.

Above all, if I think I can make the turn...I can't make the turn. If I'm not positive, well, I'm landing straight ahead.
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Last edited by scrollF4 : 11-02-2014 at 09:10 AM.
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