Engine failure turn back.

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don january

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After watching the video and thinking back on what happened to my father in a Piper Pawnee one morning I think both pilot's where thinking mainly of the condition of the "aircraft" after impact! I say this because my dad admitted after his crash that his biggest thought was to save the craft by getting back on the ground on the same road he was flying off of but unfortunately there was the load truck on it going for a load of water. and Dad's flight was a Impossible Turn with about 200 ft. AGL. Dave Keller was also lucky that the runway was not being used at the time of engine failure. I on some day's will fly to airport's in the surrounding areas and look for emergency landing areas off the end of the strip's and have made myself a notebook
 

Aerowerx

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Scary!:shock:

I remember reading many years ago about a procedure for this, developed by can't-remember-who. It was similar to what crop dusters do.

Using a full motion flight simulator programmed for an engine failure on climb out just a couple hundred feet up, they had a bunch of pilots try it.

No low time pilots could do it. A few experienced pilots did it. It took an experienced test pilot to really be good at it.

*******
I think my inclination would be to turn left and head for runway 30. One thing I learned in my training was to forget the pattern and head for the nearest runway, assuming you had enough altitude.
 

Lucrum

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I don't want to sound like I'm undermining his "skill" at saving the plane. And of course hindsight is always 20/20. But IMO saving your butt should take priority over damaging the air frame or engine in such situations. When you have so little time to act and think.
I'd also like to think I'd had the presence of mind to make a left turn to rwy 30. Rather than the turn he made. IF I was going to attempt such a high risk turn to begin with.
 

Rockiedog2

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Many think that if they don't damage the airframe they don't get hurt.
 
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BJC

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Some comments.

A turn to runway 30 seems obvious, but if there was a significant crosswind component from the right, a turn into the crosswind would have been a good decision.

His turn was at a bank of approximately 30 degrees. The most effective return to the runway turn will be closer to a 60 degree bank for most airplanes.

Simply getting turned back is only half of the challenge; getting slowed down before the end of the runway can be difficult.

If one is gong to turn back, one needs to have practiced the turn under the conditions that will exist when having to do it for real. Airplane weight and temperature are big factors. Know the minimum altitude/airspeed from which you will make the turn. The direction of turn should be planned before takeoff. Consider your passengers. If you make a turn from minimal altitude, at a 60 degree bank, you will frighten the passenger. Do you know what the passenger will do? Screaming is OK, grabbing the controls or the pilot is bad.

Not many pilots have seen the ground at less than 200 feet altitude in a 60 degree bank with the nose way down. Be aware that things look different when maneuvering down low. Again, practice under controlled conditions is the route to success.

No, I am not recommending that you try it.


BJC
 

don january

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Keller had some altitude and that's what got him back, and some skill's. The trees could have been his landing spot and that would have made for a different video. Fellas if your engine fail's after take off, think forward flight, and airspeed. crash.jpg
 

Pops

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Some comments.

A turn to runway 30 seems obvious, but if there was a significant crosswind component from the right, a turn into the crosswind would have been a good decision.

His turn was at a bank of approximately 30 degrees. The most effective return to the runway turn will be closer to a 60 degree bank for most airplanes.

Simply getting turned back is only half of the challenge; getting slowed down before the end of the runway can be difficult.

If one is gong to turn back, one needs to have practiced the turn under the conditions that will exist when having to do it for real. Airplane weight and temperature are big factors. Know the minimum altitude/airspeed from which you will make the turn. The direction of turn should be planned before takeoff. Consider your passengers. If you make a turn from minimal altitude, at a 60 degree bank, you will frighten the passenger. Do you know what the passenger will do? Screaming is OK, grabbing the controls or the pilot is bad.

Not many pilots have seen the ground at less than 200 feet altitude in a 60 degree bank with the nose way down. Be aware that things look different when maneuvering down low. Again, practice under controlled conditions is the route to success.

No, I am not recommending that you try it.


BJC
I had a bi-annual where the instructor pulled the engine on me on take-off and wanted a turn back to the runway. I turned into the wind, nose down and hard rudder. When he realized I was going to make it, he requested a non-flap landing. He had it timed just right for enough altitude to make it. Takes a lot more altitude than you would ever think. At my grass field it will be to the hay fields across the river on one end and hay fields over the woods on the other end. I did have an engine failure one time at about 30' at a large airport and got down and stopped before getting to the intersection of the other runway. There was a river about 200' down the hill off the end of the runway and then another hillside. That is why I will always refuse an intersection take-off.
 

JIC

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I was taught if you have a engine failure a take off get the noise down, maintain air speed and pick a spot straight ahead, don't even think about turning back to the airport.

Steve Appleton the CEO of Micron was killed trying to make a turn back to the airport after a engine failure on takeoff, if he had gone straight ahead he probably would still be
alive today, instead he ended up stacking it up between the two runways of the Boise airport.
 

Rockiedog2

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>>>I was taught if you have a engine failure a take off get the noise down, maintain air speed and pick a spot straight ahead, don't even think about turning back to the airport.

yep that's the way it's taught. and on most planes(especially the typical trainers) that's about the only option. But there are quite a few planes where a turn back is possible; even advisable; depending on what's straight ahead, how well the PIC has prepared himself and how he flies his departure.
 

Alan Waters

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I had a bi-annual where the instructor pulled the engine on me on take-off and wanted a turn back to the runway. I turned into the wind, nose down and hard rudder. When he realized I was going to make it, he requested a non-flap landing. He had it timed just right for enough altitude to make it. Takes a lot more altitude than you would ever think. At my grass field it will be to the hay fields across the river on one end and hay fields over the woods on the other end. I did have an engine failure one time at about 30' at a large airport and got down and stopped before getting to the intersection of the other runway. There was a river about 200' down the hill off the end of the runway and then another hillside. That is why I will always refuse an intersection take-off.
I was told by a Sonex builder that Jeremy Monnett, CEO of Sonex used intersection takeoff rather than taxi to the end of the runway at Oshkosh. If that is true, he might be alive today if he had not used one half, more or less of the runway to take off.14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, June 02, 2015 in Oshkosh, WI
Aircraft: MONNETT JOHN T JR SONEX SA, registration: N123SX
Injuries: 2 Fatal.
This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On June 2, 2015, about 1520 central daylight time, a Monnett Sonex SA experimental amateur-built airplane, N123SX, impacted unoccupied vehicles, after departing the Wittman Regional Airport (OSH), Oshkosh, Wisconsin. Both private pilots were fatally injured. The airplane was substantially damaged. The airplane was registered to and operated by Sonex Aircraft LLC, under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight which operated without a flight plan. The local flight was originating at the time of the accident.

According to OSH tower personnel, the airplane departed runway 9 from the intersection of runway 9 and runway 13. After clearing the airplane for takeoff, the tower controller focused their attention on inbound traffic and did not witness the accident.

The accident site was located 0.25 miles east-northeast of the departure end of runway 9. The airplane came to rest on unoccupied vehicles located on Oshkosh Corporation's property on a general heading of 220 degrees. The engine separated from the airplane and was located on the ground in front of the airplane. All major components remained attached to the airplane. The airplane was transported to a secure facility for further examination.
Aviation Accident & Synopsis Query Page

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fLWs5SdOsDY
Taking a look at Sonex LLC on Google Earth I found runway 9 to be approx. 3600 ft long. If the pilot chose to taxi to the intersection of runway 27 he would have had about 1500 ft of runway. The next intersection down would have given the pilot about 2500 ft.
 
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BJC

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Long, long time ago, was taking a 10 year old boy for a ride in a C150, doing all the usual "there is your house, the lake" etc.

"There is the airport" followed by power reduction across from the numbers. "What is that?" apparently referring to the noise reduction. "We are going down" assuming that he understood the unstated "to land."

He instantly became hysterical, louder than the engine. (Post above reminded me of a passenger louder than an engine.)

I learned to say "I am going to reduce engine power so we can glide down to the runway."


BJC
 

JIC

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If you have an engine failure the noise is already down...:)
Not always, I was in a C-47 once when the left Engine let go, Believe me the loud bang and back firing got my attention in a hurry. It got the pilots attention too.

But I did hit to many keys, it have been get the nose down.
 

Joe Fisher

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It was early fall 1969. There was a fly in breakfast some where early morning at Aero Airport Lincoln Nebraska. The hangers were $15/month. You had to use a boat winch to lift the door. There was an old man that kept a 1940 Aeronica Defender next to me he was a 100+ hour student. We helped each other open our doors. We talked some and I noticed that his gascolator was half full of water. So being the helpful hanna that I am I offered to fix it for him. I had safety wire and tools and I cleaned and reinstalled the glass bowl. Turned on the gas and no leeks seemed to be just fine and I had done a good deed for that morning. Went to the fly in and all over the country. Its late afternoon approaching the Aero Airport off the end of the diagonal runway is yellow and red wreckage. I just knew that it must some how be my falt my hart was in my throat as I landed. Well He didn't know much about airplanes he would just come out on Sunday mornings and do touch and goes and hang out. There was a placard rear seat for solo flying and he had reasently found that he liked flying it from the front seat better. And I had expressed my opinion that probably was not a good idea. So he had decided that maybe he should fly from the back seat and that morning he did. He told me after 10 or so T/Gs about 300' up the engine stopped just like you shut the switch off. All he could think was back to the runway. He started to turn left. But the wing looked to close to the ground so he picked it up with the stick. But it stopped turning. So more left rudder. Then the nose went down so back on the stick. The airplane hit on the nose and left wing. He got a finger caught on the throttle and broke it. That is all he got heart. It turned out that the "P" leads shorted out in the fire wall. If he had turned 20deg. to the left there was 1/2 mile of new harvested miellow he could have landed with the rows and not even flipped over. Oh and the instrument panel ended up flat agenst the back of the front seat.
 

mcrae0104

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Taking a look at Sonex LLC on Google Earth I found runway 9 to be approx. 3600 ft long. If the pilot chose to taxi to the intersection of runway 27 he would have had about 1500 ft of runway. The next intersection down would have given the pilot about 2500 ft.
I'm not ready to second guess Jeremy's runway decision based on the facts presented in the preliminary NTSB report, and the conclusion that using more of runway 9 might have prevented this is unwarranted unless we know how much time/distance/altitude there was before the engine went out (if we even know it was an engine-out situation).

Alan, are there more facts available outside of the preliminary report that I'm not aware of?
 
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