View Full Version : ex Military Jet Trainers (JP's, L39 etc.)


Say again s l o w l y
21st Nov 2003, 21:21
This is a new thread about the use of ex-military jet trainers by civilian and especially private pilots.

Are the current standards set by the CAA tough enough? If so why is the accident rate in ex-military a/c so much higher than in 'normal' GA.

Is there enough oversight of inexperienced pilots who buy into syndicates? Apart from instructor overview.

There are virtually no guidelines from the CAA about ejection seats. Is this acceptable? A seat is just part of an ejection system that needs ALL parts to be in working order. If this is true, why is it that when in RAF service the sucessful ejection rate was 75%, but using the same technology this rate has dropped to below 15% in civillian hands?Is this down to maintenance, training in the use and limitations of the seat or a combination of the two?

How do people feel about the onset of EASA, is this going to affect the way these a/c are operated, for instance in Germany, ex-military a/c are not allowed to have functioning ejection seats, could this happen here. (personally I hope not.)

If there are problems with British machines, how serious are the issues with eastern bloc types such as the L29, L39 and Galeb for example. Is it possible to get the seat charges required despite customs not allowing the import of explosives? Should the CAA make a representation to Customs on behalf of the owners of these machines to allow an exemption on seat charges on safety grounds?

In regards to the problems with the previous thread, these have been resolved and this thread is to be used in no other way by myself other than for a discussion about topics I find worrying and by a desire to make sure that we keep a/c like these being flown by ANY pilots who are capable. Any responses will not be used outside of this forum by myself.



ronbvr
21st Nov 2003, 22:19
As an ex-RAF groundcrew member with a life-long interest in aircraft, I guess there are a multitude of inter-linking causes-and-effects here.

The almost saturation servicing with a large manpower resource in a service environment; availability of relevant spares and POL (no visible cost); constant aircrew training and perhaps more in-depth introduction to type; possibly stretching the boundaries of normal usage of the a/c by air-show performances rather than standard in-service flight envelope.

I recall an accident a couple of years back when one of the 'Vintage Pair' fell down. One comment from a gentleman who used to fly the type was that a certain manouevre early on take-off had probably caused the problem. This was flagged in the service pilots notes, as hard experience had shown it up. Said experience has to be re-learned if the pilots notes are unavailable to the aircraft renovators and current operators.

It would be interesting to compare the accident rate for 'preserved aircraft' (lack of a better term) in UK with that in Canade/USA where the numbers are so much larger but the governing attitude seems to be more relaxed.

None of this is to decry the guys who perform wonders every year bringing historic aircraft to us punters, whether at Old Warden or Fairford. It's just that warnings like 'Careful, she bites', posted by the original operators, can get lost over time.

Long may all the pilots and ground crew flourish, though. Museums are interesting to a point, then you need the sight, sound and smell of the real thing (or very close approximation)flying.

Regards

RonBVR

Genghis the Engineer
21st Nov 2003, 23:11
I know from "reliable sources" that CAA is concerned about the safety record of ex-mils, which is poor. This is identified primarily as being down to a combination of...

- Maintenance schedules need to be appropriate to civil operation, and it's often difficult to know what should be put together.
- A lot of these aircraft are being flown limited hours, much of which is airshows or associated practice. This is a high-risk operating schedule.
- Source and quality of spares can be an increasing problem.

In addition, there's a general concern over the fact that ex-mils aren't allowed to operate in IMC. The consensus amonst operators is that an aircraft like a Hunter transiting across the country is far safer punching up through cloud in IMC and transiting VFR on-top, than mucking about at 250-400 knots at relatively low level amongst all the GA traffic.

I believe that they are living with it because everybody wants to see these beasts continue to fly, and also because it's perceived that virtually anybody getting into an aircraft in this category is highly experienced, usually ex-military, and therefore well equipped to judge the risks that they are undertaking for themselves - not a view (rightly in my opinion) that CAA takes with CofA aeroplanes.

G

Say again s l o w l y
21st Nov 2003, 23:30
Isn't that perception part of the danger Genghis. In the airshow world, it usually is fairly experienced people flying and since they have to get DA'd then hopefully there is a good check on their competance. But what about in the normal world, where somebody goes out and buys a machine and flys it with much less experience and checking than in the airshow industry.

I definately agree about the IMC issue, this will be even more pertinent when/if the Vulcan 558 project gets off the ground so to speak.

Genghis the Engineer
21st Nov 2003, 23:46
In general, the vast majority of accidents that happen to ex-mil fast jets are during airshow (and probably by implication to the most experienced pilots).

I'm not sure about the pilot training requirements for such aircraft - particularly for somebody civil trained, maybe somebody in the room knows and can enlighten us?

By the way, I wasn't suggesting that things can't be improved - in fact I know CAA work quite hard to try and make warbird operation a lot safer than it is at present, I was mostly explaining why CAA aren't panicking about the current position.

G

DamienB
22nd Nov 2003, 00:00
Most ex-mil jet accidents at shows? I can only think of the L-29 at a South coast show and the Vampire at Biggin. And on the non-show side you have the JP seat incident, the Strikemaster crash oop North, the JP forced landing on the mud flats, the Hunter crash this year, L-39 runway overrun at Duxford, L-39 forced landing near Duxford, etc. Going to check the AAIB in a minute but my perception is there have been more non-show accidents by a substantial margin.

Edit - AAIB results (aircraft crashes or forced landings only) - my memory not so good (though there are several non-fatal incidents involving minor damage that are all non-airshow stuff which I haven't included).

Hunter G-HHUN - airshow
Hunter G-KAXF - airshow transit
L-29 G-MAYA - airshow
Vampire G-DHAV - airshow
Meteor (RAF vintage pair) - airshow
Vampire (RAF vintage pair) - airshow

JP G-BWBS - aeros (non airshow)
JP G-BYED - local flight
JP G-TOMG - pleasure flight
L-39 G-BZVL - training
Strikey G-BXFX - air test
L-39 ? - training? (not on AAIB yet)

Philip Whiteman
22nd Nov 2003, 01:56
One fact that brought me up short is that the accident rate for ex-military Permit aircraft is fifty times that of the normal run of civilian machinery. (My publisher came up with this when he was quizzing the CAA on the issue of flight restrictions on Gazelle helicopters - machines with a superb safety record in military service, I should add.)

Zlin526
22nd Nov 2003, 02:08
Damien,

Just a little clarification of your stats:

G-HHUN crashed on a non-display day at Dunsfold, hence I dont believe this is a true display-related accident; As I remember it, and without looking at the AAIB report, it occured during a practice flight. Aerobatics yes, but could have been at 30,000ft. I recently attended a seminar (along with 'Say Again Slowly') where it was suggested that the pilot of this aircraft should have ejected, but chose to try and fly the aeroplane back onto the runway. I often wonder if these people ever consider what happens to the aircraft after the pilot leaves? The pilot's life may have been saved, but the burning aircraft may have ended up flying into the high street of the local town??

G-KAXF - Again, this was transitting back to base from a display, therefore in my view, and certainly that of the CAA, it was an A to B flight, straight and level (initially) and not display related.

It's very easy to massage the statistics to make them read how you want them to.

For the anti-display lobby, it may 'appear' that lots of aircraft crash at air displays if you read statistics without detailed knowledge of the actual causes

At the same seminar as I have mentioned, and a recent Military seminar, the L39 which recently force landed in a field near Duxford was described as "taking part in a display". Incorrect information from people who really should know better..




Say Again Slowly,

Do you think that the CAA should restrict pilots who get to fly TBM700s, Malibus, and other high Performance aircraft, as maybe your average PPL can't cope with their High speeds, engine handling and exceptional performance? What about all the PPLs who fly Harvards, an aeroplane that will certainly bite you if pushed in a slow speed turn......

Say again s l o w l y
22nd Nov 2003, 02:19
Hi Zlin,
With respect to TBM's and Malibu's there already has to be a formal type rating, hopefully this helps keep the standard high. I am always worried about inexperienced people in High performance types.

The Harvard can be a very tricky a/c, in the same way an Extra 300 needs to be treated with respect.

Personally I wouldn't be adverse to a system like the Australian's and South African's where ALL types have a formalised type rating system. That may seem a bit silly for people tranfering from a C152 to a C172, but it would be one way of making sure a lot more is covered rather than a perfunctorary check, where im,portant details may be missed.

Evo
22nd Nov 2003, 03:12
SaS

I am always worried about inexperienced people in High performance types.

Does "high performance" count as complexity, in the same way as tailwheel etc.? It does in the States where anything with more than 200hp requires additional training and an instructor sign-off (61.31f) but I'm not sure what happens here - can't find a reference in any of my PPL books.

If it doesn't, then why not? - and if it does, then isn't it a failure in the training system for pilots to be in command of a high-performance aeroplane that is beyond them..?

Zlin526
22nd Nov 2003, 05:49
Say Again Slowly...

I have flown both the Extra 300 and Harvard and the Extra is a pussy compared to the Harvard. Both a real treat to fly, but the Harvard will bite you every time in a slow speed turn.

There is a form of type rating available for civilian ex-mil jets. In essence, it goes something like this:

The current JAA rules state that a type rating is required for turbojet aircraft. As there is currently no type rating available for these aircraft in the UK (as there is for TBM700, Malibu, Boeing 737 etc), the CAA issue a pilot with a Type Rating Exemption. This is not a 'tick in the box' exercise. When an application is made, quite detailed consultation is made between FCL at the Belgrano and with relevant experts in the other operational branches of the CAA about the pilots flying background and suitability to fly the intended aircraft; most of these experts are ex-mil QFIs on various types of fast jets. A training syllabus is proposed by the operator, and accepted by the CAA. Once they are happy with the proposals, a training Exemption is issued, which allows the pilot to undertake training on one nominated type of aircraft with a named instructor. The training Exemption also allows the pilot to fly a single solo exercise.

Once the pilot has flown a solo to the instructor’s satisfaction, then the pilot may apply to the CAA for a full Type Rating Exemption on the strength of the training as previously proposed. This is valid for one year, and is renewable by logbook evidence of satisfactory currency. Conditions can and are imposed where relevant.

In addition to the licensing requirements, ex-mil jet operators are required to operate in accordance with CAP632 (http://www.caa.co.uk/docs/33/CAP632.pdf) and to prepare and submit an Organisational Control Manual (OCM). Once this has been accepted by the CAA as meeting the requirements of CAP632, they are then subject to annual audit. Approvals can and are withdrawn when the requirements are not being met, or where doubt exists about operator’s procedures. Once this happens, the aircraft cannot fly, because the aircraft’s Permit-to- Fly requires compliance with CAP632.

With this in mind, I personally believe that there is satisfactory supervision and safety oversight undertaken by the regulatory bodies. These are civilian aircraft operated by private individuals. Somebody at Big Chief level in the CAA must have taken a long hard policy review of the realities of allowing low hour pilots to fly these aircraft. They must have been happy to allow it then, and to keep allowing it some 10+ years after the start of civilian ex-mil jet flying in the UK. I agree that there are now a large number of ex-mil jet aircraft flying, but the regulatory principals remain the same.

Looking at Damien B's list, I count 10 civilian jet accidents, with 9 fatalities. How many other fatalities have there been in light aircraft and Helicopter types over that same 10 years? LOTS! So as I said in my previous post to your thread about JPs (which has been deleted by the moderators), why single out ex-mil jets? There will always be the small number of pilots who's financial status far outweighs their flying ability, and only fly these aircraft to impress the girlfriend, but hopefully the requirements weed these pilots out right at the start.

Can we look forward to the DVLC restricting 17 year old drivers to cars under 1000cc, and not being allowed to drive Ferraris and Lamborghinis??

http://www.stopstart.freeserve.co.uk/smilie/vroom.gif

Phew.....



P.S.

On the subject of impressing people, I saw a real 'smoothy' type who spent all day walking around Kemble at the open day a few months ago. Wearing a Gro-Bag with loadsa badges, and some G trousers with the hose hanging out of his pocket. All the 'real' ex-mil jet pilots were sniggering in their coffee, 'cos apparently they are too uncomfortable to walk in unless you are posing.http://www.stopstart.freeserve.co.uk/smilie/tosser1.gif

sycamore
22nd Nov 2003, 07:23
Sas, where do you get the 75%/15% ejection seat figures from?I can`t believe your man fromM_B would be happy. as I think you would find that there has not been a seat failure in the RAF/Navy,or of the Folland seats in the Gnat.By that I mean if the seat has been triggered it has worked/operated. If the seat has been operated outside the Parameters for a Safe ejection( ie pilot alive) then that is a different statistic, and should not cloud the reliability issue.There have also been many successful ejections outside the limits as well.
Also, in the civil accidents, the seats have worked, but in two instances were outside the parameters for different reasons.

A recent accident to a German Alpha-jet in which the crew were killed may lead to a revision by the LBA, if it was true that it had to have de-activated seats, and it had been a surviveable accident.( my speculation, based on brief info. only)

Say again s l o w l y
22nd Nov 2003, 07:42
Sycamore, the figures come directly from the chap at MartinBakers. I can assure you he was not happy about them one little bit.

MB count the seat as one part of an ejection system and a successful ejection can still lead to a fatality from an unrelated problem it is not just a case of the seat firing.

For example, the JP accident at Bradwell in '98 was an example of this. The seat fired and the chute opened, but the pilot was not wearing a life jacket and there was no dinghy. The pilot subsequently drowned. Was this a failure of the ejection system, not really, but as part was missing the end result was dreadful. (especially as it was on Christmas eve)

Zlin,
I have no experience with the Harvard apart from reading and talkong about it. I understand that it has some pretty nasty characteristics. The extra is a lovely machine to fly, but it needs to be handled with respect, especially on T/O and Landing.

If these procedures are so red hot, why are we still having the accidents?

I fly Helis as well as fixed wing and the accident rate on R22's is also pretty scary, but the problems are being addressed and Frank Robinson is making concerted efforts to try and reduce the accident rate.

DamienB
22nd Nov 2003, 07:54
Zlin256 -

G-HHUN crashed on a non-display day at Dunsfold, hence I dont believe this is a true display-related accident

The AAIB report says the crash occurred after a display and before rejoining with another Hunter for a run and break to end their respective displays together.

G-KAXF - Again, this was transitting back to base from a display

So that would make it an 'airshow transit' as per my list, no?

It's very easy to massage the statistics to make them read how you want them to.

A quite remarkable accusation to sling at me when I was doing nothing of the sort; indeed I was being particularly harsh on my own recollections of which ex-mil jet incidents were airshow related by erring on the side of including airshow transits and practices under that heading purely because, as Genghis said, participation in display flying implies more experienced pilots.

My feeling had been that more accidents were to be found when looking at flights totally unrelated to airshows (and by implication a little more likely to be flown by less experienced pilots) than when looking at flights related to display flying (and therefore DA holders, more experience, blah blah). Genghis said opposite, I went to check, and by the looks of things it's pretty much 50-50 so we're both wrong!

Does demolishing my own position make me a statistic massager? :confused:

LOMCEVAK
22nd Nov 2003, 08:41
Some good thoughts on here. Sycamore's points on ejection statistics are very valid. With the exception of the 75%/15% ejection statistics, most of the comparisons on this thread have been between civilian operated ex-military jet aircraft and pure civilian aircraft. We also need to consider a comparison of the statistics between civilian operated ex-military aircraft and the same types when in service. We then need to consider the differences in the two operations. Specifically:

Ejection seats live/inhibited. Pilot background with respect to ejection philosophy.

Aeromedical training for high altitude operation (one that has not caused an incident in an ex-military aircraft yet but has in Learjets!).

Minimum runway lengths for take-off and landing and stopping aids (arrester barriers). I believe that this is a major issue.

The carrying of unserviceabilities.

Modus operandi. Is a pilot tempted to low fly because his aircraft type did in service, and it is legal, even though he may have little experience of that environment?

IMC flight (already mentioned).

250 KIAS speed restriction below 10,000 ft if not in receipt of a radar service.


I am sure that I will think of more items and I will then edit this post accordingly. What we have here is the basis for a major symposium, and I have not touched on engineering aspects (quite deliberately as that is not my field). These problems are not insurmountable and are certainly not just related to pilot experience. We continuously go through soul searching in the display world, where some of the issues are similar to those here. If we keep dialogue such as this going, hopefully it will help in the jet world.


Keep 'em flying.

L

Zlin526
22nd Nov 2003, 19:08
Damien,

I dont want to get into the details of this for obvious reasons, or into a slanging match but the crash of G-HHUN happened at Dunsfold on the Friday. I know because my own involvement at Dunsfold was cancelled because of it! It was a display PRACTICE, and not an actual display...therefore it doesn't make it a display accident in my view. The accident cause was not related to an air display flight, the aircraft caught fire whilst practicing, and the pilot tried unsuccesfully to land back on at Dunsfold with obvious consequences. I have done quite a bit of research into this and other accidents at Air Displays, using the CAA/SIDD stats.

And G-KAXF. My apologies you are indeed correct. I was getting confused with the recent Hunter accident in Wales, which was certainly not a display related accident in any way, shape or form..

On a related subject, and FYI, as far as display related accidents in the UK go, the vast majority are to experienced pilots, often with lots of hours on type, and quite often with a military flying background. :confused:

Genghis the Engineer
22nd Nov 2003, 21:47
Engineering issues are an interesting problem, and worth mentioning.

Let's take a hypothetical case, and say that next week the RAF will decide to retire the entire Hawk fleet within 6 months.

So, straightaway it'll probably do two things, firstly it'll cancel all spares contracts that take it past May, secondly it'll cancel all maintenance actions which don't become critical past May. This is only sensible, after all why should it pay to retire aircraft in condition to be used after it's last flight.

So, these Hawks get put up for disposal at auction, and I go along and buy myself one for whatever the going rate turns out to be. Presumably the RAF will have already removed the weapons systems so I don't need to worry about that.

I'm going to disregard the legalities for the moment, and just think in terms of pure technical problems. (That way, the whole thing looks just difficult rather than almost impossible).


- Firstly although inevitably some spares will be available (they never run out at the same rate) there are bound to be some parts I can't get. Let's say the RAF used it's last set of mainwheel brake-sets the day before retiring the fleet. So where do I get them, well I can go to BAe or their subcontractors but they are probably now busy tooling up to make bit for Eurofighter, Hawk replacement, etc.


- So, I then need to find somebody sufficiently competent to make these bits, get hold of the data out of BAe, get them authorised by the CAA to manufacture spares - and that should solve that problem. (Alternatively I can buy two, and keep robbing one to keep the other going - easier but probably no cheaper and a strategy with a fixed life.)


- Next problem, the maintenance practices and schedules are all written around people holding military qualifications, with no direct equivalence in civil licenses. So, I need to re-write all of that aspect of who-may-do-what, to show who is qualified to do each maintenance task on the aircraft.


- Oh yes, and almost certainly some bits life expired the day I bought the aircraft, so having dealt with who may do what, I can get some of these folks on bringing the aircraft into currency.


- Now another problem, the maintenance schedule for the Hawk was probably written around the assumption of each airframe flying about 400 hours per year; nothing wrong with this, since the RAF expects to get the maximum use out of it's expensive assets. However, the odds are that I'll only be able to fly the aircraft for about 40 hours a year tops. Is this a problem - yep. Lets say there's a series of hydraulic seals in the undercarriage which BAe decided should be replaced every 100 hours or 6 months. Now, they knew the aircraft would fly 400 hours per year, so they only listed the 100 hours interval - but at 40 hrs per year that's 2½ years, and they'll probably fail long before that. So, I've got to go through the entire set of maintenance schedules, re-writing the lot in terms of the utilisation rates that I'm expecting to get out of the aircraft.


- Now I need to ensure that I've a complete set of the specialist tools needed to maintain the aircraft.


- Armed with this lot, I can start to get my groundcrew doing the numerous jobs deferred by the RAF, so that I've then got some hours on the airframe.



So, now armed with procedures for obtaining acceptable spares, a complete set of tools, alternative qualifications for my ground crew (oh yes, and trained them on type) and re-written all of the maintenance manuals, plus put some hours back into the airframe I'm in a position to go to the CAA and start talking about actually letting somebody fly it.


It's a credit to those involved that these machines fly it at-all. I've no doubt that the aircrew are fully aware of this, but perhaps a shame that the general airshow-going public isn't even faintly aware of the huge efforts that are behind allowing them to watch somebody display a Hunter on a Sunday in August !

G

Say again s l o w l y
22nd Nov 2003, 22:09
I think LOMCEVAK's point about pilot background in relation to ejection seats is a very valid one.
Sometimes they are seen almost to be a get out of jail free card. This is not always the case, they have their limitations like any device, but are people aware of it enough when in a time of high stress? The envelope of use for any seat is not very flexible since there must be a finite amount of time from pulling the handles to being under a fully deployed canopy.
I don't think ANY of the seats in civilian hands are zero/zero.

The point about some way of arresting a/c, particularily at Duxford is also pertinent, nobody wants a repeat of the M11 over run.

I would hate to see a blanket ban put on the use of any a/c, a similar example of this was the DVLC putting a limit of 33hp on all new motorcycle riders under the age of 21 with less than two years experience. This has lead to all sorts of problems, usually in the understanding of who can do what and when. The numbers of new bikers around the ages of 17-21 has dropped dramatically, without changing the fatality statistics. Not everything that was imposed was bad however, epecially in that you now have to do your test on a relatively powerful machine to prove you can handle it.

This may point the way for how in the future we handle the issue of allowing people to fly high performance types of ANY kind. Have an examiner on each type (ex-mil or whatever) who can make the decision about if a pilot is safe, rather than the committe based, rather complex system we have today.

Zlin, does the prospective pilot undergo any sort of interview to test suitability. Your example of the chap walking about in a G suit all day is exactly the type of person I'd think was maybe a bit unsuitable.

I was on a safety course for Robinson Heli's a while ago. At the beginning the instructor asked for our backgrounds and experience, he then categorised how 'risky' he felt we were. An interesting excercise, I was a bit worried to find out that I was high risk; relatively high time fixed wing, young and a biker to boot. By the end of the 3 days though he had modified his impression slightly and whilst I was still 'risky' he felt happier because of my temperament. Compare this to another in the group who he said would definately kill himself in a heli, a few months later, this individual bent a machine pretty badly, but on paper this chap was very experienced, all the right 'ticks', but had an ego the size of a small country.:yuk: The problem is though is that is easy to be wise in hindsight. Accidents will always occur, we just need to find a way of minimising them, without imposing draconian measures. A pretty tough task.

Engineering is a massive part of the of the operation any type of aircraft, but especially with the ex-mil machines. I think how it could be done for all types in the future has been shown with a company like De Havilland Support who have taken over all the responsibility for De Havilland types from BAe. This gives the CAA a reference point and owners some proper backup even if a manufacturer isn't interested themselves. (Concorde being a prime example unfortunately :mad: )

Dr Jekyll
23rd Nov 2003, 19:04
Since the controversy is about the safety implications of such aircraft being flown by privately trained civilians as opposed to experienced military trained pilots. Should we consider how many of these accidents do actually involve inexperienced civilians?

My understanding is that many, such as the Vampire at Biggin Hill and the L29 off the south coast, involved highly experienced ex military pilots.

Zlin526
24th Nov 2003, 20:41
It's gone very quiet........

Say Again Slowly,

does the prospective pilot undergo any sort of interview to test suitability. Your example of the chap walking about in a G suit all day is exactly the type of person I'd think was maybe a bit unsuitable.

The actual point i was making is that any form of flying attracts different individuals. How 'individual' they are sometimes manifests itself as the example I used. For all I know he was a superb pair of hands, but just wanted everybody to know it..I remember when I was learning to fly a guy at the nextdoor flying club used to wear the full kit, Gro-bag, pristine white leather gloves and flying boots.......to fly a Cessna 150. Did that mean he was a bad pilot?

As far as interviews go, I'm not sure it happens. But then again where do we draw the line. Some of the most experienced airline pilots I know, I wouldnt let loose with an Airfix model!

England needs individuals!:ok:

englishal
24th Nov 2003, 23:47
SaS,

If Joe Bloggs has enough dosh to buy himself an L39, and he end up stacking it into a field and biting the dust, then that has been his choice. If the ejector seats don't work / he doesn't know how and when to use them, then that is his fault. So long as he has insurance to pay for the clean up.....

If you want to ride your bike at 150mph, and you come off and hit a tree and bite the dust, equally who cares, it was your choice......We could always take the American I-don't-want-to-get-sued approach and wrap everyone up in cotton wool so you can't even burn you hand on a hot cup of coffee.....

It starts to become a problem when innocent bystanders end up getting caught up in it. If you ride your bike into a bus load of people and take half of them out with you, then that is what pisses people off. Likewise if Joe Bloggs flies his L39 into a crowd at an airshow, then this is unacceptable. Out of interest, how many innocent bystanders have been wiped out by PPLs in their jets?

EA

Genghis the Engineer
25th Nov 2003, 00:27
Presumably these risks should largely be addressed by

(a) The Instructor who signs him off as qualified on type for the CAA.

(b) The Display Authorisor who signs him off as fit to display the type, and dictates his display limits.

G

Unwell_Raptor
25th Nov 2003, 00:59
Politically, the most important issue is that of potential collateral damage on the ground. This is a very crowded group of islands, especially in the South, and one big nasty crash with civilian casualties might spell the end of the whole business. That is why I do not want to see XH558 back in the air, nor a Lightning. Wonderful to watch, but the consequences of an accident are horrific, and the tabloids and the politicians would revert to the old standby of 'do something, however stupid'.

LOMCEVAK
25th Nov 2003, 22:11
englishal,
I have to disagree with your first paragraph as one irresponsible individual's actions may result in draconian legislation which impacts on responsible owners/pilots.

Some of the comments regarding whether an accident occurred at a display or during a display practise are, I feel, not really relevant to this thread. The difference to Air Show organisers is very important, as they are interested in statistics relating to crowd safety and the public perception of airshow safety. However, what we are discussing is accidents that occur during low level aerobatics and maximum performance high g or high angle of attack manoeuvring. In other words, it is the flight phase that is important. There may be extra pressures on a pilot at a display, but there again there may be during a practise also (DA renewal, display currency etc).

Perhaps we need to look for common threads in civilian jet accidents. I would suggest categorising the causes as follows:

- Departure from controlled flight.
- Controlled Flight Into Terrain: low flying; aerobatics; disorientation.
- Take-off and landing on inappropriate runways.
- Error of judgement following technical malfunction (i.e. the accident could have been avoided/mitigated by alternative actions).
- Technical malfunction.

Obviously, some accidents will have multiple causes.

Another important categorisation is whether pilot and crew fatalities could have been avoided if:

- A de-activated ejection seat had been live.
- Ejection had been attemted (when it hadn't).
- An ejection had been made inside seat parameters (when actually it had been made outside).

Then we could look at experience and currency/recency! If anyone has easy access to all of the accident reports, categorising them would be interesting.

Rgds

L

Say again s l o w l y
27th Nov 2003, 02:08
ea,
What a crass statement, that is just the sort of attitude that would ensure that this nanny state would stop us flying anything bigger than a paper plane unless it was for an airline.

Zlin,
As you say, flying does attract all sorts of individuals, but I feel the most important attribute a safe pilot needs is the 'right' attitude. There are a huge number of dinner party pilots out there, who are only interested in being seen as a 'sky gods' and usually their flying ability often matches their attitude.

The clothes somebody wears doesn't necessarily mark them out as a bad pilot or good pilot. Often a gro bag is actually a very sensible item of clothing, if however they customise it with epaulettes!:yuk:

I would hate for pilots to be clones, but there is wide margin between a pro having fun and an amateur showing off. (I don't take pro/am in this sense to mean being a commercial/military or private pilot, but in the idea of some professionalism and competance what ever the experience, basically not pushing it until you are uncomfortable, but leaving some capacity to deal with problems)

How many people's last words were "watch this"?

I'll definately agree about airline pilots and airfix models! I stuck myself to the table quite a few times as a kid when I tried to speed up the model building process with fast drying epoxies!;)

Genghis the Engineer
27th Nov 2003, 03:44
Lomcevak,

I'm pretty certain that the analysis doesn't currently exist in the form you suggest (arguably it should). I've seen the analysis CAA has used in it's own decision making, which is basically by type and hours flown and doesn't seem to look all that deeply at the way the aircraft are being operated, pilot experience and training, and other factors that you rightly suggest somebody should be thinking about.

The accident reports are all available, at-least back to 1996, on the AAIB's website at www.aaib.dft.gov.uk so it would be fairly straightforward to search against each known warbird type on the G-register (which you can pull from the CAA G-INFO page) and do an analysis of that nature.

G

englishal
27th Nov 2003, 16:16
What a crass statement, that is just the sort of attitude that would ensure that this nanny state would stop us flying anything bigger than a paper plane unless it was for an airline.
Its just what you want to do anyway by the sounds of it, so whats the difference!

My point is that we should have freedom to choose, flying a JP is no more dangerous in the right hands that flying say a twin. Put a 100hr C152 PPL in a Seneca, or a Baron with 6 hrs of training, in my opinion, is a highly dangerous thing to do. Can you really fly a twin in 6hrs? JAR says you can. I wouldn't though. I have around 50 hrs multi time now, and only now do I feel comfortable and safe in a ME aircraft, though I don't take it for granted and I certainly am wary that the thing can bite if not respected.....as I'm sure most PPL "fast" jet pilots are....

Likewise, I wouldn't do 6hrs of conversion training and then take the helm of a jet, it'd be madness, and from the people I know who do fly ex-military trainers, there is no way they'd be let loose after only a few hours of instruction. So I reckon that pilots in charge of say a JP are more competent than the average PPL anyway. They are better trained, most will already hold higher ratings (eg Instrument, ME etc), and probably 99% will have been through some sort of aerobatics course...

EA

Say again s l o w l y
27th Nov 2003, 18:01
ea,
The freedom for all of us to be able fly any machine we like, is exactly the issue I want to protect. There are around 6 accidents a year throughout Europe in ex military a/c, with a total of around 350-400 machines that is a serious problem. If we as the pilot community don't try to reduce this, then eventually it will be done for us and we may not like the result.

Unfortunately stats as well as common sense show that experience is a factor in some accidents (some are bad luck or mechanical failure but the majority are pilot error, any easy tag to hang however.)

Being wary that something can 'bite' says to me that a pilot has not reached a sufficient level to be able to control or understand their machine properly. The handling notes and experience of others should allow you to see what the envelope and limitations are. Step outside it and the a/c will 'bite', but it is you who provoked it. If you know the a/c well enough and the issues surrounding it, then hopefully you are less likely to get into trouble because of a handling error.

The average JP pilot maybe more competent. I don't know how you could judge it though without a pop idol type contest. Skill levels are very subjective and we all think that we are better than we probably are. (except for me, I KNOW I'm marvelous!:rolleyes: ) The only way of checking is by a test and long term evaluation scheme of each individual.

Don't confuse licences, hours etc. with competence. Just because somebody has a PPL doesn't mean they are unsafe and consequently just because you have an ATPL with all the bells and whistles doesn't make you perfect either.

6 hours of training is pretty laughable for a high performance machine if the only experience the prospective pilot has was in a cessna or the like. My view on this may be very different from most people on this forum, since I get paid to go flying and somebody else pays for any conversions onto different types I fly, therefore to me cost is not an issue. Not true in the 'real' world.

englishal
28th Nov 2003, 01:26
Being wary that something can 'bite' says to me that a pilot has not reached a sufficient level to be able to control or understand their machine properly
Nope, it says that they have not experienced everything the a/c can throw at them....and may never throw at them, but you have to be prepared for it.

Anyway, I agree to disagree as I won't be changing my view and you won't be changing yours :D

Cheers

Say again s l o w l y
28th Nov 2003, 08:52
OK, we can agree to disagree, but I always feel that if an instructor hasn't shown all the nasty handling issues in any a/c, then they haven't done their job correctly.

Lomcevak has a good point about categorising all the relevant accidents. I'll try and do so over the next few days and see what it really looks like. Some accidents will have multiple causes (as is usual) but I'll try and stick to the major causes and effects.

I would like to have this discussion split between 'normal' flying and displays, the causes of accidents are usually different and I'd rather compare like with like if possible.

the point about fatalities in situations where;

"- A de-activated ejection seat had been live.
- Ejection had been attemted (when it hadn't).
- An ejection had been made inside seat parameters (when actually it had been made outside)."

Is to my mind vital, ejection seats/systems are crucial in some circumstances. Eg the JP crash at Bradwell, Strikemaster crash, JP incident caused by malfunctioning O2 system, L39 at Duxford.

These are but a few of the accident reports on the AAIB site as linked by Genghis. For example
L 39 Report (http://www.dft.gov.uk/stellent/groups/dft_avsafety/documents/page/dft_avsafety_022817.hcsp)

A report that shows that unfamiliarity on type caused a horrific crash that will have far reaching effects.

The statement "During the investigation, two unrecorded (by either AAIB or CAA) incidents of L-39 Normal braking failure occurring in the UK in the late 1990's were described. It appeared that both aircraft were then on foreign registers (but operating in the UK) and neither pilot considered that it was appropriate to notify the authorities, despite the fact that one of the aircraft was damaged as a result. Following numerous inquiries, brief verbal accounts were obtained."

Is pretty scary, if the previous pilots had commented on this issue, would the fatality have happened at all? May be not. We all require the latest information in relation to flight safety, if not, what is the point of a body such as the AAIB or the CHIRP program?

englishal
28th Nov 2003, 16:31
OK, we can agree to disagree, but I always feel that if an instructor hasn't shown all the nasty handling issues in any a/c, then they haven't done their job correctly.
I think you're missing my point :D An instructor can show you nasty handling tendancies until the cows come home, but there may be that time in the future when you come across a combination of events which may catch one by surprise. It pays to be a bit wary, until one has an awful lot of experience.

Anyway, nuff said....

Cheers
EA:D

Flyin'Dutch'
28th Nov 2003, 17:05
EA,

SASlowly will only stop a thread when his posting is the last one!

He wrote:

OK, we can agree to disagree, but I always feel that if an instructor hasn't shown all the nasty handling issues in any a/c, then they haven't done their job correctly.

Where does he draw the line?

FD

Circuit Basher
28th Nov 2003, 17:10
Me old Dutch - obviously when his posting is the last one, then the line will be drawn in ink!! ;) :D

Say again s l o w l y
28th Nov 2003, 18:20
Thanks for the constructive comments chaps.:rolleyes:

My statement was a bit sweeping, but the gist is that you shouldn't need to be 'worried' about any a/c you fly. If you're stressed, then your available mental capacity is reduced and you are more likely to make poor judgements if the a/c does something unexpected. Very few of us here are test pilots(there's certainly one who's posted on this thread however) and the vast majority of handling problems are well documented on any type, especially JP's. If you read enough or talk to an old hand, then hopefully you will avoid getting into dodgy situations.

Accidents are usually caused by a chain of events, not just by one handling error. This is what we need to eliminate, rather than the big f***ups that are much easier to deal with in the long term.

CB, I tried writing on the monitor, but I could never get it to stay on the page.

englishal
28th Nov 2003, 22:33
but the gist is that you shouldn't need to be 'worried' about any a/c you fly

Very correct. There is a difference being Wary and being worried.

I was taught to be wary by a 2500hr MEI, who had 600hrs multi time. As soon as you let you guard down and become complacent, will be when you die.

Doh, I just couldn't let it lie could I :D

FJJP
29th Nov 2003, 09:57
Be a bit careful when you throw around figures like 6 hours. Six hours would just about get you through circuit and basic handling training in a JP - enough to give the student the confidence to fly a circuit solo. Display flying is a totally different kettle of fish, and requires many hours of training and practice. The CAA examiners, like Rod Dean (who is a fast jet pilot in his own right) would not clear a civilian to fly or display something like an L39 or JP until he was satisfied that the individual was capable. It has nothing to do with stats or rules - it's about professional integrity and judgement.

Display organisers are bound by the rules - it doesn't matter whether the participant is civilian or militery - he has to have a civilian or military endorsement that he or she is competent or safe to fly the cleared manoeuvres. Practice displays at the venue are incredibly valuable - it takes the unfamiliarity value out of the equation, and gives you the layout of ground features to assist with display planning. Crashes during display practice should be counted as display accidents, even though they are not witnessed by the public - the lessons learned are equally valuable, that pilots might learn from the mistakes of others.

Say again s l o w l y
4th Dec 2003, 22:57
Can anybody tell me what the legal standpoint with JP's that are operated in clubs. i.e buy a membership at £345 and get a "FREE" flight in a JP.

How does this work on a permit to fly a/c?

What would the fall out be from an accident that killed a member of the public?

How do these companies/clubs get public libility insurance?

Is there a catch all disclaimer that must be signed?

Flyin'Dutch'
4th Dec 2003, 23:51
Take it you ask because there is someone operating such a scheme.

Rather than using a lot of bandwidth why not ask those that operate it for the answers? That would surely be the best way to get those questions anwered.

Or are you thinking of setting us such a scheme yourself?

Forgive me if I am mistaken, but your questions seem to be formulated to do some shroud waving.

FD

Say again s l o w l y
5th Dec 2003, 00:35
Definately not setting up a JP 'club' of my own FD. Not sure what you mean by shroud waving?

I've done a quick evaluation of the Historic a/c accidents in the AAIB website and then tallied these to the current numbers of those a/c flying today. ie not including the crashed machines.

The types I looked at were:

Hurricane: 10 on U.K reg. 0 accidents
Spitfire: 33 on U.K reg. 7 accidents (1 display, 6 'normal' flying) 4 fatalities
JP: 30 on U.K reg. 6 accidents (0 display, 6 'normal' flying) 4 fatalities
L-39: 3 on U.K reg. 1 accident ('normal' flying) 1 fatality
L-29: 5 on U.K reg. 1 accident (Display) 1 fatality
Harvard: 21 on U.K reg. 3 accidents (normal flying) 0 fatalities
Lockheed Lightning: 0 on U.K reg. 1 accident (display) 1 fatality
Hunter: 32 on U.K reg. 3 accidents (1 display, 2 'normal' flying) 1 fatality
Mosquito: 0 on U.K reg. 1 accident (display) 2 fatalities
Sea Fury: 1 on U.K reg. 1 accident ('normal' flying) 1 fatality

This gives a total of 137 Total a/c, 24 accidents (5 display, 19 'normal' flying) and 16 fatalities.

When you consider the number of hours these type of machines fly, it makes pretty sobering reading.

Stats can be manipulated to mean anything you wish, but I've tried to be as conscientious and un-biased as possible.

Flyin'Dutch'
5th Dec 2003, 00:46
Thank you for the stats and every one agrees that we should all operate flying machines as safe as possible.

However what do they prove?

More people die when having coronary surgery than for an appendectomy. So do we abolish coronary surgery on the basis of that or can we understand that those who qualify for this sort of procedure have different risks than the population which undergo an appendectomy.

More non bikeriders get killed in motorcycle accidents than bystanders or 'members of the public' in any sort of General Aviation accident. What do we do? Ban motorcycles?

You're obviously a 'man with a mission' but not sure what the mission is.

And am at a complete loss how your quotation of the accident stats relates to the question you posted on here earlier today:

Can anybody tell me what the legal standpoint with JP's that are operated in clubs. i.e buy a membership at £345 and get a "FREE" flight in a JP. etc....

May be I am missing the point, if so please clarify the obvious.

FD

Say again s l o w l y
5th Dec 2003, 00:55
FD if you read the whole thread, you may get the gist of what I'm talking about.

Too many people are being killed in historic a/c of all kinds. I don't think anyone would disagree with that. I will repeat myself again, What are we going to do about? Sit about and hope nobody notices? We live in a nanny society that likes to tell people what they can and can't do, unless we take the lead in trying to eliminate as many accidents as possible, eventually we may have to give up watching/flying these wonderful machines and only see them in a museum because the powers that be have decided that they are too dangerous. (I don't mean the CAA here, as they do seem to have a fairly sensible approach to most of these types.)

If you don't want that to happen, then lets have a proper discussion about it, rather than the petty mud slinging that seems to fill these boards a lot of the time.

Flyin'Dutch'
5th Dec 2003, 01:13
SASlowly,

I do understand that you have concerns, but I don't understand what your latest question has to do with those.

You seem reluctant to elaborate on the thrust behind the question.

So, as far as I can see it there are 3 options:

1. You ring the people who are operating a JP and ask them to resolve your questions as posted on here in: Can anybody tell me what the legal standpoint with JP's that are operated in clubs. i.e buy a membership at £345 and get a "FREE" flight in a JP.

2. You try to keep this thread going by asking something which as far as I can see has nowt to do with the original question or your concerns.

3. And if neither of those are applicable I think I may have been correct when I wrote, on this thread: SASlowly will only stop a thread when his posting is the last one!

;)

FD

Zlin526
5th Dec 2003, 01:26
Say again Slowly,

Havent you finished your MSc dissertation yet??

As FD says, pop over to North Weald one busy Saturday and ASK the operators of ex-mil jets there how THEY operate them.

Much more effective than asking Ppruners, many of whom (apart from Sycamore and Mike Garfield), dont know the first thing about it! And who knows, you may even finish your dissertation before the deadline:ok:

TTFN

Z

MLS-12D
5th Dec 2003, 01:42
Being wary that something can 'bite' says to me that a pilot has not reached a sufficient level to be able to control or understand their machine properly. The handling notes and experience of others should allow you to see what the envelope and limitations are. Step outside it and the a/c will 'bite', but it is you who provoked it. If you know the a/c well enough and the issues surrounding it, then hopefully you are less likely to get into trouble because of a handling error…. You shouldn't need to be 'worried' about any a/c you fly.Well, the Harvard is only type mentioned in this thread that I have personally flown. And indeed, as someone with less than 20 hours in the airplane, I am 'wary', even 'worried', when I fly it. I completed a four day ground school and received excellent instruction from three experienced ex-military pilots, but I am still very conscious of the fact that it is a demanding aircraft that can quickly get a pilot into trouble.

If I correctly understand SASlowly, his point is that any properly trained and experienced pilot [which he believes is the only sort that should ever fly an ex-military type] will be completely familiar with the aircraft and will be entirely confident in his or her abilities. I don't know anything about jets, but it's well-documented that many high-time combat veterans were killed in Harvards during WWII ("it's just a trainer"). Even Chuck Yeager was recently humbled (see NTSB (http://www.ntsb.gov/ntsb/brief.asp?ev_id=20031009X01689&key=1) and AvWeb (http://www.avweb.com/newswire/9_41a/briefs/185820-1.html) reports.

Say again s l o w l y
5th Dec 2003, 02:19
Hi Zlin, Yep all finished about 2 weeks ago, not a dissertation though, just a short project of 1500 words.

I have spoken to a few operators, but they are pretty closed about the details. Might have something to do with any extra cost if current thinking is changed. All sections of the industry try to exploit 'grey' areas. I know we do on occasion. I'm in no way whiter than white, but I have my limits. If people have all the facts about something, then they can make an informed judgement. Does Bloggs care about the legal niceties? Of course not, they assume that it is all kosher. We hopefully know a bit better and can ask some more searching questions. One reason that I personally would be very circumspect about taking up some of the more complex historic types, especially anything with an ejection system in it.
I can't see why you shouldn't post about it on this board, even if people might not like the answer, actually change that to ESPECIALLY if people might not like the answer.

MLS, absolutely right. It doesn't matter if you are Lindbergh, Yeager or Niel Armstrong. What we can do is try to minimise the number of accidents. I'm still wary of the R22 but I know as much about the machine and its handling traits as I do about anything else in flying. Does that mean I won't ever have an incident? NO. does it make me less likely to smash one up? Maybe.

Well I think I'll forget about trying to have a serious discussion on here, since some people seem to be unable to get out of the school yard.

These boards are not just about enjoyment, but also education, if anything I or anyone else has written makes somebody think a bit more, then that's ok. But to go down to petty comments........ I notice nobody has said that the accident rate is worrying. Heads in the sand? Or is it acceptable?

Flyin'Dutch'
5th Dec 2003, 03:28
All sections of the industry try to exploit 'grey' areas.
I hope you have the substance to back up this potentially libelous statement.

I'm in no way whiter than white, but I have my limits
Take it that you mean to say that you 'know' your limits?

And while we are on that subject of knowing them, do you ever consider that the reactions that you evoke have something to do with your presentation?

You write:I have spoken to a few operators, but they are pretty closed about the details
May well have something to do with your approach.

I'm still wary of the R22 but I know as much about the machine and its handling traits as I do about anything else in flying
And how much is that exactly?

Well I think I'll forget about trying to have a serious discussion on here
I noticed that some pages ago. :D

IF you are interested in having a serious debate it pays to be interested in and respect other people's opinions even when they do not concur with your own point of view.

You still have not clarified what your motives are behind the posting:
Can anybody tell me what the legal standpoint with JP's that are operated in clubs. i.e buy a membership at £345 and get a "FREE" flight in a JP.

FD

Say again s l o w l y
5th Dec 2003, 03:52
Libelous to whom? No specifics are mentioned are they?

The route that is being used is exploiting the fact that you are not paying for a flight in a Permit a/c, but as a member of a club you get a free flight due to your membership. How much clearer does that need to be? Do a google search about JP's and you'll find this very quickly.
This is also done in a similar way in flight instruction, to get around the fact that somewhere hasn't got an AOC. "We'll call it an instructional flight." That is not a particularily clever thing to do.

This is a pretty cynical way around the rules that are in place to protect the public. If Bloggs got killed on his flight, would an insurance company pay out? May be not. Does Bloggs know this? I doubt whether anything done is 'illegal', but it doesn't seem to be in the spirit of the regs in anyway.

FD don't start insulting somebody who you don't know. I am very interested in other people's opinions, but not that many have offered any about how things can be made different. I seem to have struck a nerve here for some reason that I can't quite fathom. Do YOU have an opinion about this? If so I would like to hear it. If not then why are you wasting bandwidth?

Flyin'Dutch'
5th Dec 2003, 04:10
FD don't start insulting somebody who you don't know.
What is the insulting bit?

I am very interested in other people's opinions, but not that many have offered any about how things can be made different. See my earlier comments.

Do YOU have an opinion about this? If so I would like to hear it. I gave my opinion in the previous thread as I was under the impression that we were having a serious debate. Unfortunately it transpired you were harvesting opinions for your research of a 1500 word essay and thus fell foul of the rules. You obviously did not read that posting although it was amongst the first few.

Bit rich then to state:why are you wasting bandwidth

A clear case of the pot calling the kettle!

;)

FD

Say again s l o w l y
5th Dec 2003, 04:32
Sorry FD, but the last thread was not about canvassing any opinions for a project. Pprune is not the place to get any real attributable data as I've posted before. These thoughts came up as I wrote a project about one particular crash. No 1500 word essay could ever come close to exploring any of the points raised here.

I don't want to get into a slagging match, if you want to continue it then either PM or e-mail me.

QDMQDMQDM
5th Dec 2003, 07:50
There are around 6 accidents a year throughout Europe in ex military a/c, with a total of around 350-400 machines that is a serious problem.

Is it? These are ex-military machines, which means they are by definition not modern military machines. The accident rate in military trainers in the 40s, 50s and 60s was enormous. A high attrition rate was acceptable in training. Now, these machines are even older, making them more dangerous.

Flying such aircraft is a dangerous occupation, however you try to minimise the risks. Rock climbing without a rope is dangerous. So is climbing Everest, even with a rope. As long as people understand the implications of what they are doing, good luck to them and let's not have any tears when they go west, just a jolly good wake.

It would be interesting to know what the RAF's acceptable attrition rate in training was in the 50s. 6/400 = 1.25% / year. Looks pretty good to me. I bet the RAF accepted a lot more back then.

QDM

Say again s l o w l y
5th Dec 2003, 08:08
Actually I got it wrong, it is closer to 8 per year out of around 400 machines. 2% per year. The main problem is though that the number of these machine is reducing because of crashes, this can make the real figures even worse.

Is there an 'acceptable' figure for crashes? Not for me, but what about others? At what point do we say enough?

Julian
5th Dec 2003, 16:38
Hmmm, I notice you quote no of aircraft on UK register but then include accident figures for aircraft not on the UK register... doesnt that mix up all the stats and make them worthless?

I think you will more than likely find that more than 2% of people who own a vehicle wipe themselves out in car accidents than stacking an aircraft - think you are flogging a dead horse myself.

Say again s l o w l y
5th Dec 2003, 18:06
HI JUlian, as I said, stats can be made to mean anything you want. I don't know how many a/c have come onto the register since the different crashes, but in the interest of fairness I assumed that the total number has remained around constant. The finite detail of the numbers however is not really the point, I find them pretty shocking, but that's my opinion.

If 2% of car driver per year killed themselves, then I think the government would be pretty concerned. In WW2 as a bomber command crew, if the shoot down rate went over 2%, then statistically you had no chance of finishing a tour. 75 missions x 2 = 150% chance of being shot down. Its all cumulative, could there concievably be a time where there are no historic a/c left because they've all been involved in accidents?:confused:

Flyin'Dutch'
5th Dec 2003, 18:32
Not only is your information regarding the number of missions flown on a tour for bomber crew incorrect (it was 25 and went up to 30) but also your grasp of basic statistics is flawed.

A 2% chance of an occurence does not amount to a 150% chance after 75 times.

FD

Say again s l o w l y
5th Dec 2003, 19:01
Initial tour for an RAF crew was 30 missions followed by a 6 month break teaching at an OTU or HCU. Then 20 missions more. After this they could then volunteer for more op's if they wanted.

Many did, brave men.

Chance is cumulative, the loss rate in bomber command was around 5%, this meant that even on the inital tour you had mathematically no real chance of survival. 5 x 30= 150.

This is the accepted way of measuring risk. In a cumulative way. It is not my method, but one that has been used for many years. Could you tell me why this is wrong?

NigelOnDraft
5th Dec 2003, 19:05
SaS...

Your stats above (last page) attempt to correlate "being on the UK reg" with "accidents". Ummmm.... never knew a piece of paper was so dangerours.... must do something about it.

I think you'll find most of the accidents occurred whilst the aircraft was flying, or attempting to fly. One tends to measure flying in "hours" or "flights" or something like that.

If you can produce some useful stats about accident rates i.e. accidents per hour (or even flights) then post it. Otherwise please stop drawing meaningless conclusions...

As an example you quote:
Hurricance x on reg y accidents
JP ... " ... "
your "conclusions" only have any validity if the hours / flights flown per annum by the Hurricanes are the same as the JP. In that I am sure they are not, your post was a complete waste of time...

As noted by others, you again seem to keep trying to direct this thread (like your last removed one) in accordance with some agenda only known to you. Makes trying to debate or discuss anything very difficult....

NoD

LowNSlow
5th Dec 2003, 19:09
Just to be pedantic chaps, RAF bomber crew flew "operations", the USAAC flew "missions".

The heavy bomber crews flew 30 ops. At the very end of the war I understand it was raised to 35 as the risks reduced (slightly) and the Heavy Conversion Units were running down from January 1945 thus the supply of fresh crews was slowly drying up. The chance of dying in RAF Bomber Command between starting flying training and completing a tour of ops was an extremely scary 62%. Yes, a 62% chance of dying, not surviving :uhoh: The only military service with a higher loss rate was the Kriegsmarine U-Boats with around 70-odd %. The merchant marine on convoy durty was also frighteningly high.

Back to the original subject; the post war RAF had a high loss rate, what the percentages were I don't know. Old military aircraft may have handling "quirks" that will have been designed out of more modern machinery. A proper conversion to type should more or less negate these. However, no aeroplane, no matter how benign, is completely tolerant of errors and all humans regardless of experience and ability WILL make a mistake occasionally. In a low level environment these can be, and often are, fatal. Unfortunately that low level environment is usually in front of a crowd measured in the thousands........

The logic of flying "spirited" displays in aircraft that are 60+ years old, close to the ground, with limited total hours on type is a whole different issue. Personally I think that Shuttleworth and the BoBMF have got it right in the way they display their aircraft.

Say again s l o w l y
5th Dec 2003, 19:48
NoD, how would you measure accident rates then? Number of a/c divided by number of accidents. seems fine to me. I haven't got access to the data you require, No. of hours flown per accident is far more meaningful, but I do have to go to work occasionally, so If somebody would like to do a more indepth analysis.....

I can't quite work out why you are looking for a hidden agenda, I've made my position abundantly clear. If you don't like my points, then refute them with EVIDENCE.

How the Shuttleworth collection operate, is in my eyes an example of what we all should aim for with the operation of historics. I don't agree with their policy of test pilots only, simply because that excludeds me!, but they have an excellent record flying some very challenging machines.
The same with the Tiger club. They ensure by their own high standards that it is unlikely that the 'right' of flying their a/c will ever be taken away from them. They have sensible limitations and stick to them. This may be a bit restrictive in some peoples view, but if it allows continued access to these a/c....

CAP 632 is a very good document, if it is adhered to. If it didn't exist, then I doubt there would be an historic jets flying around today.

How many private operators have a thorough Safety Management System (SMS)? Looking for problems before they occur and fixing thm before they become an issue.

I'll go back to the issue of ejection seats.
CAP 632
_Chap 5 para 4
_Ejection Seats
“Where ejection seats are an integral part of the aircrew escape system, as specified in the relevant Pilot’s Notes, Flight or Aircrew Manuals, it is recommended that they be fully serviceable for all flights. It is unlikely that the CAA will allow swept-wing aircraft fitted with ejection seats to be flown unless the equipment is fully operational.”

A JP being straight wing therefore doesn't HAVE to have a serviceable system.
T3 and T4 have manual canopy, T5 has electric.
CAP 632
Annex E paragraph 2.4.2
_Parachutes
_ “In those jet aircraft where the ejection seat is inhibited, a parachute should still be worn by all occupants of the aircraft.”

This means that in an inert seat a/c you need to do an 'over the side' bail out. Must be at least 2000' to allow for canopy deployment etc.- How likely is it that someone will leave their pride and joy that early? or will they try and get it back?

There has only been one case of a succesful 'over the side' bailout. An F8 Crusader. It is almost impossible to get out of a machine at high speed and at high 'g'. This is why ejection seats were invented, so why are people flying without them?
This does not however take into account the point of being able to succesfully force land a JP due to its fairly forgiving nature and especially it's straight wing.

How likely is somebody to use an ejection seat rather than try to put the a/c down in a field? NoD and others who fly these machines what would YOU do? In what situation would you use the seat? How confident are you that it would lead to a successful outcome.
(I've reread my notes and the figure I gave earlier for successful ejection stats wasn't quite right. In RAF use there was a 92% success rate. In civvy hands it is now a 75% FAILURE rate.)

There is more to a seat than just having up to date cartridges.
1) Are the seats totally inert?
2) Seat to a/c locking sytem. If the seat is inert, why isn't the seat bolted to the a/c?
3) Pilot to Seat locking system
4) Pilot to a/c connections. Oxygen etc.

How is it possible to have up to date cartridges in non U.K a/c with the problems of short shelf life and trying to get new explosives through customs?

How many pilots who fly JP's and the like are aware of these issues? Hopefully all are, but I suspect not.

Flyin'Dutch'
5th Dec 2003, 20:31
Chance is cumulative, the loss rate in bomber command was around 5%, this meant that even on the inital tour you had mathematically no real chance of survival. 5 x 30= 150.

This is the accepted way of measuring risk. In a cumulative way. It is not my method, but one that has been used for many years. Could you tell me why this is wrong?

Chances as the ones you are talking about are actually not cummulative.

I will explain to you with a simple example how it works.

Mum and Dad are going to make a first baby. What is the chance(risk) that it will be a boy?

Exactly 50% or half.

They had so much fun and decided to have another go at it for number 2.

What is the chance that it will be a boy?

Exactly 50% as number 2 does not 'know' what the outcome was the first time around.

Etc even if they go on to have 50 kiddos the chance for that 50th one will be 50%.

Comprendo?

Now what is the chance that they will only have boys?

The first time around that was 50% or half(1/2) and half(1/2).

The chance that the both are a boy is 1/2 from the first time and 1/2 that it is the second time. That chance is not 1 (or 100%) as per your calculations but 1/2*1/2 = 1/4 or 25%

Cappice?

Hope this helps.

FD

How the Shuttleworth collection operate, is in my eyes an example of what we all should aim for with the operation of historics. I don't agree with their policy of test pilots only, simply because that excludeds me!,

'Fraid that this is incorrect too.

Say again s l o w l y
5th Dec 2003, 20:52
Oh and what's wrong about that? From Rod Dean:TEST PILOTS (WITH FEW EXCEPTIONS)
The vast majority are test pilots and I personally don't know of any others. Their policy not mine.

Maybe Aerbedane or Grandad Biggles could clear this one up.

This argument is spurious, As I stated the system of cumulating risk is a standard one when talking about war time ops. By your calculations a bomber crew on their final mission have an enormously reduced chance of being shot down than at the beginning of operations (thanks LowNSlow, A good bit of trivia!) Try telling that to a crew. They had just as much chance of being shot down on the first, second or 50th missions. An experienced crew might have actually had more chance (I've seen a figure of a new crew having 10X the likelyhood of being shot down on their first 15 operations compared to their later missions) but overall it was always an incredibly risky proposition.

NigelOnDraft
5th Dec 2003, 21:31
<<NoD, how would you measure accident rates then?>> Accidents per hour flown.

<<Number of a/c divided by number of accidents. seems fine to me.>> Sorry, no - its b*llocks / meaningless.

<< I haven't got access to the data you require>> Fine - nor have I... and in fact, doubt anyone has without a lot of work.

<< No. of hours flown per accident is far more meaningful>> Exactly...

Misleading data is worse than no data at all. So lets settle on that - we don't have any meaningful accident rate data here. The CAA might?

I am not getting into a discussion about disabled seats in a JP. I do not fly a JP with disabled seats. The CAA approve it under certain circs. Other may have experience / thoughts.

<<NoD and others who fly these machines what would YOU do? In what situation would you use the seat?>>
The drills / rules are that you eject unless you judge you are in a good position, at your decision point, to successfully force land the aircraft on a hard runway. I will therefore follow the rules. Many of us in the RAF, however, had a potentially alternative agenda in certain circumstances, largely relating to surface condition and wind. That was a totally personal decision for each of us, outside the "rules", and it remains as such for me.

<<How likely is it that someone will leave their pride and joy that early?>> Bear in mind that the cause of a forced landing (serious engine failure), and/or any landing that is not totally contained on a hard runway, will almost certainly "write off" the aircraft, in that any extensive form of repair for a JP is likely to exceed the cost of getting another.

<<How confident are you that it would lead to a successful outcome.>> Very. Or I wouldn't be there...

<<In civvy hands it is now a 75% FAILURE rate.>>
Please back this up. Quote some figures and/or the example accidents that form this analysis. Please exclude the following accidents which have either nothing to do with the seviceability of the seat system, and/or the lesson has been learnt, or your RAF v Civvy comparison is meaningless:
1. JP Bradwell. Landing in the sea inadequately dressed and equipped will kill anyone. Seat worked perfectly.
2. Seat fell out of JP Colchester. Lesson learnt, applied to deactivated seats anyway.
3. L39 Duxford. Seat worked exactly as advertised. Regretfully it was used well outside limits, but don't see how you can blame it for that.
4. Strikemaster near Hull (?). Again, seems seats worked exactly as advetrtised.
5. JP in West Country (double fatality). Less said about this the better, but aircraft and seat had nothing to do with the outcome.
6. Oxygen starvation on airtest. A good lesson here re the Oxygen system for all. As a principle, I am avoiding doing flights requiring the use of Oxygen - it is not necessary, and if it becomes so, will require more revision of the system and equipment from me to be happy.

<<How many pilots who fly JP's and the like are aware of these issues?>>
In the group I am in (JPs) - well aware of these, and many other issues. And the CAA seem well happy with they way it is run (but can always be improved, and is being with their monitoring) - I'll leave it to them to conduct the overisght - not you I'm afraid.

<<If you don't like my points, then refute them with EVIDENCE>>
This is what is getting annoying. You make a series of unfounded allegations - and then expect everyone else to produce the evidence to refute your spurious allegations - a very strange form of debate! How about YOU produce some statisitical or other evidence (which your "types on register" / "accidents" is NOT) to back up any allegations/ points you would like to make, and we can have a meaningful discussion. As a starter for 10, please back up this 75% failure rate you keep quoting (and don't just say "the man from MB quoted it"!)

Final point:
<<historic jets >>
Ummmm..... When I think of "historic jets" I think of jets of historical value, a rarity value, and maybe of good looks and/or performance e.g. "classics". Much as I enjoy flying the JP, it is pretty ugly (especially the 3/4), has little historical importance and nil rarity value. Whilst they are not significantly endangering third parties, and are operated in an manner satisfactory to the CAA, I think they are best kept flying if there are people out there wanting to, and able to afford to.

NoD

Genghis the Engineer
5th Dec 2003, 21:37
I'm not a Shuttleworth pilot, but I know a few. They don't require Test Pilots - it just happens that TPs are high-ability pilots best able to cope with the demands of oddball control systems, frequent failures, and a constant process of deciding whether to fly at-all.

There are a few non-TP pilots at Shuttleworth. Frankly, if I had the time and was within a sensible driving distance, I'd be sorely tempted to knock on their door myself. I LIKE oddball aeroplanes.

G

NigelOnDraft
5th Dec 2003, 21:39
<<By your calculations a bomber crew on their final mission have an enormously reduced chance of being shot down than at the beginning of operation>> I am afraid your grasp of maths and statistics is not up to this debate...

FD is correct. The chance of the bomber crew being shot down on their 30th mission is tiny compared to the first - and this is ignoring the fact that they are more experienced. It is because, given the large odds of being shot down on any particular misison, it is highly unlikely they will get to the 30th mission to be in a position to be shot down.

Now I do not expect everyone to have a grasp of statistics sufficient to understand this. However, I do of someone who is trying (and failing) to form arguments based on statistics, and despite FD explaining it to you in a very clear way, you still refuse to accept it. Forget <<...the system of cumulating risk is a standard one ...>> unless you can show that to be the case... Again, unfounded allegations from you with nothing to back it up...

NoD

LowNSlow
5th Dec 2003, 22:12
Let's not confuse singular risk and cumulative risk here chaps / chappesses. Using the Bomber Command example I'll try to clarify the situation:

1. Singular Risk: All other things being equal a crew had an equal chance of being shot down on their first op as on their last one if one discounts the benfits of greater experience etc.

2. Cumulative Risk: As the period of time that the risk is taking place and / or the number of risk events (ops) reduces, the chance of being shot down reduces proportionally as explained by Flyin 'Dutch'

Say again s l o w l y
5th Dec 2003, 22:27
Thanks NoD, the figures about the ejection stats came straight from a senior chap at Martin Bakers. I won't give his name here, but he was certainly in a position to know this, especially as he also has a company that overhauls seats for the civvy market as well. I will stress that these are his personal opinions, NOT those of MB. How he got the data I'm not sure, but why would he provide false figures?

All data I have quoted has been given by very well respected people in the Historic world. I won't post their names here without their permission. Sounds a bit shonky I know.

The JP crash at Bradwell where the chap was killed is an example of not having the right kit.
"Had he been wearing a life jacket and been able to inflate it he would, although lapsing rapidly into
unconsciousness and suffering from hypothermia, most probably have survived with his head
supported clear of the water, for the 20 minutes or so that it took for the airborne rescue services to
arrive on the scene." This is the final paragraph of the AAIB report.

In that case, the seat worked, but the SYSTEM failed since part of it wasn't there. ie no life jacket or life raft attached to the seat.

I'm happy to see that the accidents are being taken note of, especially in regard to the oxygen system. That was a lucky escape.
My point is that there should be a way of operating these machines and finding probs before there is an accident.

Your seats are 'live', but do all the systems work as they should? I'm sure they do, but that may not always be the case for others.

The biggest potential worry is not really with current seats, but how are overhaulers and groups going to cope when newer jets with far more sophisticated seats come on to the market? If we can nail problems now. I worry about it simply because of the lack of current regulation. In my mind this leaves a gap that could be exploited to the detriment of future operations. It's easier to work with clear guidelines than a mish mash or none at all.

I'll apologise if my tone has offended anybody, that certainly wasn't the intention, nor was it supposed to accusatory. As I've said before NoD, it sounds as if your group is well run. It is not down to me to tell the CAA what to do, but it is up to us how we operate our a/c. If we are content to just do what the letter of the law says and no more, what sort of message is that.
But I do feel very strongly about this subject mainly due to having known people who have been killed because of stupid mistakes of theirs or of others and had to deal with their families and the consequences, any hint of a lax safety culture is something I find very hard to stomach.

The Definition of a 'historic' a/c is not really laid down in any U.K documents. There is no mention in the ANO for example, but there is a mention in the EASA rules.

"ANNEX II OF EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND COUNCIL REGULATION (EC) NO 1592/2002 (ANNEX II COVERS WHAT IS EXCLUDED FROM EASA REGULATIONS) STATES:
aircraft having a clear historical relevance, related to:
participation in a noteworthy historic event; or
(ii) a major step in the development of aviation; or
(iii) a major role played in the armed forces of a Member State;
and meeting one or more of the following criteria:
its initial design is established as being more than 40 years old;
(ii) its production stopped at least 25 years ago;
(iii) fewer than 50 aircraft of the same basic design are still registered in the Member States;"

Whilst the JP wasn't really a major step in the development of aviation! It did have a major role in the training of military pilots.

This is the only mention of historic that I know of, that also came coutesy of a speaker.

I will concede the point about risk, but how you count risk in a mathematical sense compared to how we personally percieve risk is very different. Crews and Associations often quote the risk added together to form a cumulative total. This may not be mathematically correct, but it gives an idea of the enormous risks they faced.
Another way is that if we lose 8 a/c a year eventually we may end up with the situation of NO historics anymore. Unlikely, but possible. Stats are irrelevant to that end, but they are very useful in trend analysis, though their use becomes less clear as numbers dwindle. (1 spurious event can have a much larger affect on the statistics than in real life.)

The Shuttleworth collection mainly uses TP's for a couple of reasons they are of a known standard and have the ability to move quickly from type to type.

I believe that for the first year of their tenure at Old Warden they don't even get to fly, but have to prove their motivation by helping out.

Then there is a very progressive training regime moving slowly from type to type. The a/c themselves are categorised together, eg. wing warping, radial engine etc and the pilots are taught on those groups.

Genghis, I thought you had to be invited to fly for them?

Genghis the Engineer
5th Dec 2003, 22:58
Genghis, I thought you had to be invited to fly for them?

I'm told that you can volunteer as a helper, and that keen and responsible helpers who are also experienced pilots are the people who get invited to fly.

I'm sure somebody like Aerbedane can give us chapter and verse.

G

NigelOnDraft
5th Dec 2003, 23:02
SaS...

We're getting somewhere maybe...

<<the figures about the ejection stats came straight from a senior chap at Martin Bakers>> But this is my point. YOU are making the argument, not him. You can only really quote his figures if you can also quote the context or limitations he made them in. Remember - he has a vested interest. The military pay him lots of money, he provides good seats. He feels vulnerable because those seats are now outside the military, his good name might be at risk, due factors beyond his control - and he will make his argument, and present his stats on that basis. Please do not just lap it up...

<<The JP crash at Bradwell where the chap was killed is an example of not having the right kit>> Exactly, but nothing to do with MB, or the seat. In fact largely nothing to do with anyone other than the unfortunate chap concerned, and the group he was flying for, and their supervisory system.

We are fortunate enough to be able to assess our own risks, and decisions, without a total cotton wool atmosphere (despite the best efforts of certain Government depts). The Bradwell lack of flying kit put no 3rd party at risk (the aircraft was abandoned anyway). Great shame for his family, but that is the risk HE took. And unless he was completely off his rocker, he KNEW that when he took off... Should his family be protected from his less than ideal decisions, despite information and advice being available, and the consequences well known?

<<but the SYSTEM failed >> Disagree anything failed, other than he operated the aircraft in a manner exposing himself to a risk for which neither he, nor the seat, was equipped.

<<but how are overhaulers and groups going to cope when newer jets with far more sophisticated seats come on to the market>> You go on about a SMS, and Risk Analysis, and then say this! The whole point of the SMS is to use the current experience (JP or whatever you use) when you analyse these "new seats". You cannot condemn the JP because of some future possibility. So lets deal with the JP for now. As and when something new comes in, it will be looked under SMS / RA, see if there are lessons from the JP experience, and apply them. The CAA will then decide the operating requirements...

<<But I do feel very strongly about this subject mainly due to having known people who have been killed because of stupid mistakes of theirs or of others and had to deal with their families and the consequences, any hint of a lax safety culture is something I find very hard to stomach>> Fine, I can your problem / concern. But can / should we legislate against people's own mistakes? As I said above, for Bradwell, it is all pretty clear cut.

The Historic comment was slightly tic - but under the criteria you mention it seems it applies.

<<These thoughts came up as I wrote a project about one particular crash>> Which one? And will you share it with anyone? If it came by eMail I would not discuss its contents here, or elsewhere without your say so.... PM me for my address if you let me see it...

NoD

Say again s l o w l y
5th Dec 2003, 23:45
Good points, there was definately a bit of salt pinching about the MB presentation, but I feel most of the points were very valid.

The project was on the JP crash at Bradwell and I'm happy for anyone to have a copy of it, but I'd like to wait for it to come back from the lecturers first. Should be in the New Year at some point as I'm away from the 17th.

A lot of the insurance requirements are now far stricter than CAP 632 and this is causing a lot of problems in the display world where unless a pilot has all the ticks in the boxes, then they won't get insurance. The problem being how do you get experience in a particular type without flying it?

We always talk about risk to us personally, but our actions directly influence many others. In the Bradwell crash the only person who was killed was the pilot, but what about the effect on the emergency services and especially to his family and friends. Taking unnecessary risks does seem to be selfish in that if the worst happens, it is not you who has to deal with it. I make the comment unnecessary for a reason, there is always a level of risk attached to any activity, but we owe it to the people around us that we do our damnest to cut the odds as much as possible.
I stood behind the wife and child of a pilot whilst he was displaying and I'll never forget the moment he hit the ground and the look on their faces......:sad:

I don't want to condemn the JP in anyway, I like seeing them fly and have thought about getting a share in one at some point, but the point is that any lessons we can learn about the civillian use of seats may be useful when more advanced seats come on the market. A bit of get the basics right first if you will.

I still feel that the pilot is a pretty important part of an ejection system and by his omission caused a life to be lost. MB would count this as a success though.

Pigasus27
6th Dec 2003, 03:22
Errrrrrrrr, if you were standing behind them, how could you see their faces? Something smells around here, and it's not old Pigasus (for a change!)

Say again s l o w l y
6th Dec 2003, 03:45
I shouldn't even dignify that with a reply.

NigelOnDraft
6th Dec 2003, 18:28
SaS

We always talk about risk to us personally, but our actions directly influence many others. In the Bradwell crash the only person who was killed was the pilot, but what about the effect on the emergency services and especially to his family and friends. Taking unnecessary risks does seem to be selfish in that if the worst happens, it is not you who has to deal with it. I make the comment unnecessary for a reason, there is always a level of risk attached to any activity, but we owe it to the people around us that we do our damnest to cut the odds as much as possible. I agree, both with your sentiments, but principally because you put the onus on we, not the law e.g. the CAA.

CAP 632 is quite clear that we should carry the flying kit etc. etc. It comes down to personal responsibility. So long as you are not suggesting that this should all go down the regulatory route... Whilst it leads on occasion to sad results, human life is far richer for the opportunity to do things outside a cotton wool environment. Look at the effective demise on school trips, all due the Govt prosecuting teachers, and requiring mounds of "risk assessments" prior to feeding the ducks...

NoD

Say again s l o w l y
6th Dec 2003, 18:49
Absolutely. The last thing I want is for the regulators to come and force us into anything. I would like all pilots and operators to take the lead in regard to safety matters and issues. Some already do, but there are many out there who do the minimum required and even flount the meaning of the rules on technicalities. This can only ever be a short term, because the moment there is an incident, the rules would get tightened up in an instant to the detriment of us all.

CAP 632 is only applicable to ex-military a/c, but it could really be used by anyone as a basis.

If we do it, then there will be little or no reason for some government agency to clamp down on us. If they try that, then I'll be with Drapes up in the hills with a Martini-Henry rifle!