Mayday heard on Sunday

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501
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Post by 501 »

MCRO wrote:
My concern here is very basic : a MAYDAY call, as I understand it, mandates the scrambling of very expensive SAR equipment and I find it very difficult to justify this as an opening gambit for each and every (let us say) engine-stop – when statistically the proportion leading to serious injury is small – I have watched as I can since 1956

Maurice


Totally disagree here. As an Irish Coast Guard SAR crewmember, the first thing you should do is issue a MAYDAY and not be concerned about costs. The crew train/fly every day regardless and the service is paid for by the tax-payer...i.e. YOU.
Maurice, not everyone will be as successful as you when encountering an emergency. Surely knowing ATC or another aircraft is aware of your plight means the PIC can concentrate on the emergency ( and yes a rough running engine, or worse...a failure... is an emergency). I remind you of the sad event when two persons were fatally wounded in a Schweizer in the midlands last year. The crew of R116 were only notified of the accident the following lunchtime when it was reported overdue. They located the accident site within 20minutes.

The rescue helicopter crews are there for everyones benefit and have no problem being turned back due to a successful forced landing. However, better they arrive with two paramedics to a forced landing with injuries rather than not being called because no MAYDAY issued.

Please please, issue a MAYDAY.

jollyrog
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Post by jollyrog »

Please please, issue a MAYDAY.
I've read several accident reports where it's been determined that the occupants survived the initial impact, exited the aircraft and died of their injuries, awaiting a rescue that never came. I don't want to take that chance if I find myself in a forced landing situation.

Cancelling a MAYDAY is very simple. As was suggested, having the numbers for Shannon, etc. in your mobile is an excellent idea, but even a transmission from a hand held or the stricken aircraft's radio is likely to be picked up and relayed by CAT up high.

Whisky Tango
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Post by Whisky Tango »

I can't understand how Maurice can treat an "engine-stop" so lightly. Maybe back in 1956 there was no focus on safety but we've learned a lot since then (the hard way) and NOT to make a mayday call in such event is in my opinion wreckless and irresponsible, especially if carrying passengers. I'm sure the families of the two guys in the Schweizer accident are wishing they had made a mayday call, or that if they did, it had been heard by someone.

MCRO
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Post by MCRO »

As someone who spent some years of his flying life toodling round Western Europe in aircraft which didn't even have electrics, let alone COMs - VHF R/T hadn't come to the aeronautical mobie servce and H/F morse was impractical in a light aircraft - I am immensely heartened by 501 telling me that his service doesn't regard me as a despicable 'tiddler' who should not be aloft if he doesn't know how to behave and and carry proper equipment ( a 2nd engine) to take care of himself

It will certainly put a 'Mayday' climbing rapidly in my list of options - and so may well prolong my actuve flying life.

Without electrc/coms we used to know well that engine failure statistics over difficult terrain were likely to match those of fatalities

Perhaps 501 might have the answer to our other conundrum

Flight Plans are required for any flight availing of ATC Service - including Alerting/Search

There is no mention anywere I can find that a Departure message is required

Yet wisdom of this topic is that without a departure message there will be no follow up on flightplan for SAR

If there is a requirement for a DEP message then surely this should be hugely promulgated as it is a sea-change on the philosopy which forged the original link between FPL and SAR

Maurice

(Now in NZ where the extremely healthy relationship between SAE and Leisure flying is extremely well set out - for the comfort of all)

501
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Post by 501 »

MCRO wrote:
It will certainly put a 'Mayday' climbing rapidly in my list of options - and so may well prolong my actuve flying life.
I'm pleased to hear it. :D Fortunately, ATC,SAR and Electronic comms/aids have developed greatly over the last while.

501
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Post by 501 »

MCRO wrote: Flight Plans are required for any flight availing of ATC Service - including Alerting/Search

Actually, over here you can avail of an "information only" service from ATC without having a flight plan filed. Always a good idea that way the controller will probably know who/where you are if you have a problem.

To be honest, I can't answer the other part of your question regarding Dep messages, suffice as to say that put simply, if knowone knows you are missing or overdue then help cannot be sent !

Shannon Control are automatically informed by local ATC whenever a SAR heli is airborne.
Not only do we respond to serious incidents, but we have radio homing equipment on board, so should a pilot become lost (sorry temporarily unsure of position :D ) and they may be too low due to weather to get a radar position, we can home to their location and steer them back on target.

Without going into what is now an ongoing investigation, the recent ditching of an aircraft off Co. Wexford, it was an alert controller in Shannon that recognised the pilot's voice and an alert controller in Waterford that recognised that the signal was nearby, meant that the rough location was known. The MAYDAY call contained no registration or location !!

MCRO
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Post by MCRO »

"Information only" sounds a pretty good idea"

But I don't think it has ever been promulgated

'Request Radar advisories - I think has

But I have heard there are some difficulties -simple for this from Doc 4444

What abouit the non-Radio batallions - they are not stupid, just simple - if they are no longer looked after, so be it - but they should have been told

Most small radios do now work - but even with those wonderful SNN low-level relay stations they cannot reach a lot of 1,000 ft AGL locations

(They were never meant to)

With best cheer

Maurice

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Post by Whisky Tango »

In my opinion anyone who has any reservations about declaring an emergency on an engine failure should not be allowed have a licence.

Listen to this clip. This guy landed on a highway but regrets not having declared an emergency. He has done so twice since and there were no repercussions.

http://www.avweb.com/podcast/podcast/Au ... AVwebAudio

MCRO
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Post by MCRO »

Hello Whiskey Tango

We shouldn’t be too far adrift in our thinking : I used to be Whiskey Romeo - licensed to prowl!

I think one’s attitude to Forced Landings derives muchly from what was inculcated at training.

We were never encouraged to control approaches by the use of power until CPL/IR stage

It was a definite de-merit for students and frowned on for the PPL

And for a very simple reason

The ideal powered approach uses power to maintain the aircraft on the natural glidepath in the landing configuration selected, but at your desired approach speed - normally less than that for best glide in that configuration.

However this technique in seldom used to best effect and powered approaches routinely take a flatter path beneath the natural glideslope

Marvellous - until the engine fails and a hastily contrived forced landing, with little choice for targeting a touchdown point, is inevitable

If you are ON the glidepath the shortening of the glide whilst you regain best gliding speed following power loss will likely be made good via the drop in headwind over the last 30 secs of flight

Our drill used to be to dispense with power on base leg, make a gliding turn on to final, (now, alas a a much neglected manoeuvre), take up a glide to aim for touchdown at desired approach speed, adjust for any observed overshoot by use of speed reduction, forward slip or gentle turns (depending on stage of training) and adjust for undershoot by speed +increase to best glide – and then if you are not on aim, accept frown or de-merit!

Ones upbringing surely plays a significant part on how one reacts to the unexpected


Maurice

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