Crashes in the News - Thread

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lr27

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Hmm... sounds like if I'm going to be driving in the South, I'll need 2 spare tires instead of one, an extra gas can, a fresh haircut, a nominally American car, sleep in the car if it breaks down in the dark, etc. Hospitality!
 

Doggzilla

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Judging by the homicide rates being 2-8 times higher than the Northeast, the criminals don’t have much trouble getting them either, with such incredibly loose restrictions.

But this is getting into political territory and way off topic for this thread.
 

Victor Bravo

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We just had a Mooney crash yesterday here in the LA area. 1 or 2 fatal. Full details are not in, but EARLY info (hearsay) indicates that the airplahne left Oregon on an IFR flight plan for Van Nuys KVNY, and the flight distance was slightly in excess of the aircraft's maximum range. It was on the ILS into Van Nuys and "dropped off ATC radar" about 5 or 6 miles out, just on the north side of the "Newhall Pass" reporting point. No post-crash fire,a nd no record or indication of any fuel stop enroute.
 

jedi

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We just had a Mooney crash yesterday here in the LA area. 1 or 2 fatal. Full details are not in, but EARLY info (hearsay) indicates that the airplahne left Oregon on an IFR flight plan for Van Nuys KVNY, and the flight distance was slightly in excess of the aircraft's maximum range. It was on the ILS into Van Nuys and "dropped off ATC radar" about 5 or 6 miles out, just on the north side of the "Newhall Pass" reporting point. No post-crash fire,a nd no record or indication of any fuel stop enroute.
And apparently no "low Fuel" alert to ATC.

What was Van Nuys weather (cieliong and Visibility) at the time if you know. Was the ILS needed or could the IFR have been canceled?
 

TFF

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Sounds like a headwind miscalculation. Having one when not planning for one. Might have switched tanks to one that was really empty thinking there was more.
 

Vigilant1

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I let myself get critically short of fuel one time--the usual factors (complacency, stacked optimistic rationalizations, etc). Yes, I got a very "heightened sense of urgency" (let's not call it "panic"), but more than that I felt like an idiot and kicked myself in the butt incessantly as the situation unfolded. Everything ended fine, but it was not my finest hour.

We all know not to push fuel minimums. But this event made an impact on me that no amount of "book learning" can match. Some people can learn from the mistakes of others, I had to pee on the electric fence myself.
 
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BJC

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I let myself get critically short of fuel one time--the usual factors (complacency, stacked optimistic rationalizations, etc). Yes, I got a very "heightened sense of urgency" (let's not call it "panic"), but more than that I felt like an idiot and kicked myself in the butt incessantly as the situation unfolded. Everything ended fine, but it was not my finest hour.
BTDT, on a local (50 mile) flight when I was young and had such superior skills that I could fly to the very last drop. Had the same reaction as you.

Now, on cross country flight, I land with an hour of fuel. I hate to eliminate options, and I have arrived at airports that did not have, or were unable to pump, gasoline even though I talked to them the morning of the flight and was assured that 100LL was available.


BJC
 

Victor Bravo

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And apparently no "low Fuel" alert to ATC.

What was Van Nuys weather (cieliong and Visibility) at the time if you know. Was the ILS needed or could the IFR have been canceled?
I believe it was s**t weather, almost guaranteed to have been IFR. It's been overcast and rainy here pretty much 90% of the time for several days. I'm not saying it was bad weather by Great LAkes standarrds, or Category 3 for transport airplanes, but it was certainly not "welcome to Los Angeles!" VFR.

Judging by where he crashed (we all fly through there pretty often) even if he had canceled an IFR clearance, he would have seen the hills he crashed in... there was a far better option right under him than just plowing into the hills. Although it would be ugly and unattractive with FAA showing up with their tails wagging, the 8 lane Interstate 5 freeway was right underneath him. That would have (unfortunately) been his best choice compared to where he wound up. But even I-5 in full traffic would have been a clearly better choice. So that leads me to believe he didn't have much or any ground reference during this incident.

Van Nuys is about 992 MSL if memory serves, and the hills surrounding it are 2500-3500. The Newhall Pass, which the ILS comes through, is still 1300 or so at the very bottom where I-5 comes through, and there is a hill that shoots up to almost 3000 within a mile each way. The point being that if he were in visual contact with the ground, I suspect strongly he would have crashed on the freeway.

The only other potential safe landing spots anywhere on that flight path was a golf course and the Six Flags Magic Mountain theme park parking lot, which were both a few miles behind where he crashed.

Also I understand (Ramp rumor) that the guy was a surgeon, and had flown up there to OR in the morning, done surgeries ALL DAY, then flew back with his nurse. So you would have to throw big spoonfuls of fatigue, get-home-itis, and no patience into the equation.
Newhall Pass Mooney Crash.jpgNewhall Pass Mooney Crash.jpg
 

Doggzilla

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When I was a kid everyone used to call Mooney’s “doctor killers” because of how many doctors or other skilled professionals were killed by them in the 70s and 80s.
 

TFF

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We always called Bonanzas Dr killers too. I’m sure Mooney’s cost a pretty penny new but a 1978 Bonanza was about $120,000. Not a lot with that disposable income but Drs. No offense to Drs intended.
 

Pops

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One day I was stationed over an area at 12k and an airport under me. So instead of always landing with an hour of fuel onboard when I touch down, I stayed up about 15/20 minutes longer. Went down to the county airport and landed. No fuel, fuel trucks are days late. I cut a dip stick and climbed up and dip sticked the fuel tanks. Checked the distance to the closest airport with the gps. Happen to be a larger airport. Told the camera operator that they could stay there and I would come back and pick them up if they wanted . So took off over the mountains for the 27 mile flight and radioed approach and told them that I had a fuel situation and needed a straight in to the nearest runway. They put an airliner on hold and I made it OK. Never again. I should have called to the county airport and made sure they had fuel before making the decision to fly longer.
 

Dana

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"Forked tail doctor killer" was how I always heard it.

I've told my low fuel pier landing story here before and I'm not going to repeat it again, but the worst fuel situation I ever had was when I was helping to check out another pilot in a 2 seat Quicksilver he'd just bought. The Quick has no fuel gauge as such, just a transparent part on the overhead fuel tank, with a line marked "LAND NOW"... and kinda hard to see when you're wearing sunglasses. We flew around for awhile, did some landings at a grass airport about 10 miles away, returned home and landed... and ran out of gas about ten feet from the parking spot. Never again.

The guy who owned the plane later destroyed it when he got worried about fuel on a cross country to deliver it to a new owner and landed in a field. He got a ride to a gas statioin and borrowed some fuel cans, refueled, and got tangled up in the tall grass attempting to take off again, wrecking the plane.
 
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