Primarily for general aviation discussion, but other aviation topics are also welcome.
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By PeteM
#1841473
Float flying in Canada (west coast). We were going into a logging camp, small inlet amongst serious mountains, so a pretty constrained approach to save miles of taxiing.

Short finals to the beach - up pops an otter! So a small head amongst a lot of sea, and still about 300m away. Instructor says - "its ok, he'll dive" and of course he did, once he spotted us.

The point is though that otters and swimmers are very easy to spot - so long as the waves do not obscure them for long periods. People are good at spotting patterns and pattern disruptions - something about once being hunter gathers.

Did he see the swimmers? I don't know - but then neither do the armchair critics. Equally during the same course - "never land in the middle of a lake" - if it goes wrong you'll die in the cold water. "If you have to ditch do it close to the shore" is the mantra for landplanes and simple survival is a pretty big motivator.

I'll never aim at swimmers - but getting close to them is a pretty good idea! They represent potential help and probably shallow water.
foxmoth, Iceman, T6Harvard and 6 others liked this
By Ibra
#1841562
Except Finland & Russia on national days, are there that many places where one can hit swimmers ditching in frozen/cold lakes? I guess not, one thing at the time, either worry about cold water or hitting bikini swimmers :lol:

If it's over frezen/cold lake, the landing has to be land landing, no?

Someone showed me once a picture of his flying along the Fjords while joking that he was "within gliding range" all the time in SEP(L), what he called "land" was actually the wall going up out of frozen water with 70deg slope up to 4000ft amsl, I am sure ditch in cold water would have been more friendly :lol:
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By skydriller
#1841571
Have to say the thing that got me most on the last vid was the surfer, who having just had a 5T Warbird miss him by about 15ft and have it splash in less than a 100ft away, just has to take that wave...!!!

Yo bro, respect... 8) :thumleft:
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By Sooty25
#1841584
So, what we can see in the video.

Engine is running but decidely sick which I assume is why he's ditching.
He's inside the line of swimmers.
He's got it pretty much on the edge of stalling at touch down.

So, what if that sick engine had done something unexpected in the last few seconds.

What if it had seized solid, the increased drag would have dropped him short, or worse, caused a wing to drop one way or the other.

What if it had given a random short increase in rpm and extended his approach, who was further down the beach? Had he looked that far?

What if all the swimmers further offshore had panicked and headed for the beach?

IMO, the primary responsibilty of a pilot is the safety of everyone else around him, and in this case that means being a couple of hundred feet further offshore. If it means sacrificing your headset and a longer swim so be it. If it puts the pilot at a greater risk, rather than risk to the swimmers, so be it.

The difference between killing a third party and not, is often very fine. Think of the Lisbon beach landing in 2017.

As for the recovery, they've probably done far more harm to the airframe dragging it up the beach by its tail, than they would have, doing a straight lift onto a barge from deeper water.
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By Mike Tango
#1841585
There are pictures of it being craned onto a trailer from the beach, unfortunately the underside is in a pretty sorry state.

I wouldn’t criticise the pilot for where he chose to ditch, though I’d be interested in the decision making process and what lifesaving equipment may or may not have been being worn or carried given the operating area, e.g. life jacket.

Maybe in due course there’ll be a learning talk available, like the excellent one online from the pilot who had to force land the Mustang at Duxford a few years ago. That would be a good outcome.
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By IMCR
#1841624
FWIW I think you may be surprised how well he would have been able to see the swimmers in the water and adjusted seaward as required. Juding this from a poor quality video taken at pretty much the same level as the sea is not especially indicative. Also as we all know the lens would have foreshortened the detail greatly, both in terms of how busy the beach was, and the perspective.

I am not saying it was ideal, rather I am saying very difficult to judge from the video footage alone.

As to the sentiment about protecting members of the public I agree this should be the priority.
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By Ben K
#1841643
Sooty25 wrote:So, what we can see in the video.

Engine is running but decidely sick which I assume is why he's ditching.
He's inside the line of swimmers.
He's got it pretty much on the edge of stalling at touch down.

So, what if that sick engine had done something unexpected in the last few seconds.

What if it had seized solid, the increased drag would have dropped him short, or worse, caused a wing to drop one way or the other.

What if it had given a random short increase in rpm and extended his approach, who was further down the beach? Had he looked that far?

What if all the swimmers further offshore had panicked and headed for the beach?

IMO, the primary responsibilty of a pilot is the safety of everyone else around him, and in this case that means being a couple of hundred feet further offshore. If it means sacrificing your headset and a longer swim so be it. If it puts the pilot at a greater risk, rather than risk to the swimmers, so be it.

The difference between killing a third party and not, is often very fine. Think of the Lisbon beach landing in 2017.

As for the recovery, they've probably done far more harm to the airframe dragging it up the beach by its tail, than they would have, doing a straight lift onto a barge from deeper water.


Is your armchair comfy...? :wink:
By Ibra
#1841648
Mike Tango wrote:Maybe in due course there’ll be a learning talk available, like the excellent one online from the pilot who had to force land the Mustang at Duxford a few years ago. That would be a good outcome.


Yes it will be good to get the story on the pilot side, lot of stuff are not obvious in those iphone footages !

Just like NTSB hasty conclusion why Captain Sully decided to ditch in the busiest river in the world rather than turning back to the runway, after all he had enough power out of his two engines? (well according some "data" in the computer he had load of power but subsequent engine retreive & inspection showed he actually had 2*0% power, the engine data was rubbish, as expected when you throw fried birds & metal bits on FADEC sensor :lol: )
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By Sooty25
#1841676
Ben K wrote:
Sooty25 wrote:So, what we can see in the video.

Engine is running but decidely sick which I assume is why he's ditching.
He's inside the line of swimmers.
He's got it pretty much on the edge of stalling at touch down.

So, what if that sick engine had done something unexpected in the last few seconds.

What if it had seized solid, the increased drag would have dropped him short, or worse, caused a wing to drop one way or the other.

What if it had given a random short increase in rpm and extended his approach, who was further down the beach? Had he looked that far?

What if all the swimmers further offshore had panicked and headed for the beach?

IMO, the primary responsibilty of a pilot is the safety of everyone else around him, and in this case that means being a couple of hundred feet further offshore. If it means sacrificing your headset and a longer swim so be it. If it puts the pilot at a greater risk, rather than risk to the swimmers, so be it.

The difference between killing a third party and not, is often very fine. Think of the Lisbon beach landing in 2017.

As for the recovery, they've probably done far more harm to the airframe dragging it up the beach by its tail, than they would have, doing a straight lift onto a barge from deeper water.


Is your armchair comfy...? :wink:


did it take you as long to type your comment as it did mine? :roll:
User avatar
By Ben K
#1841682
Sooty25 wrote:
Ben K wrote:
Sooty25 wrote:So, what we can see in the video.

Engine is running but decidely sick which I assume is why he's ditching.
He's inside the line of swimmers.
He's got it pretty much on the edge of stalling at touch down.

So, what if that sick engine had done something unexpected in the last few seconds.

What if it had seized solid, the increased drag would have dropped him short, or worse, caused a wing to drop one way or the other.

What if it had given a random short increase in rpm and extended his approach, who was further down the beach? Had he looked that far?

What if all the swimmers further offshore had panicked and headed for the beach?

IMO, the primary responsibilty of a pilot is the safety of everyone else around him, and in this case that means being a couple of hundred feet further offshore. If it means sacrificing your headset and a longer swim so be it. If it puts the pilot at a greater risk, rather than risk to the swimmers, so be it.

The difference between killing a third party and not, is often very fine. Think of the Lisbon beach landing in 2017.

As for the recovery, they've probably done far more harm to the airframe dragging it up the beach by its tail, than they would have, doing a straight lift onto a barge from deeper water.


Is your armchair comfy...? :wink:


did it take you as long to type your comment as it did mine? :roll:


As others have said - we don't have all the facts, or can see what the pilot did from their unique perspective. It's a mistake to judge from the comfort of our forums based on internet videos, IMHO

(That took longer to type this time :) )
By Crash one
#1841706
It looked as though he pulled the nose up a fraction as he was close to the swimmers.
However, we weren’t sitting in his seat but it certainly looked as though he knew what he was doing.
Armchair pontificators and hindsighters will, of course, have done it far better than he did! :D
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By leiafee
#1841736
I’ve wiped out two sets of wheels on two sets of aeroplanes by not having the wherewithall to aim at the hedge and accept hitting it when engines have coughed and died.

It’s harder than you think to accept a not great option when a more tempting one is close by and there’s no engine noise to soothe your decision making!

Sally out to sea on purpose? It’d be an order of magnitude more difficult again.

I don’t believe half of you who reckon you’d do it
Ben K, kanga liked this
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