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Old 5th Dec 2019, 00:54
  #18 (permalink)  
Lord Farringdon
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Antarctica
Posts: 124
Originally Posted by gearlever View Post
Precise manual flying in direct law

Yes I have to say that with all the sprays on this forum about lack of manual flying skills today occasioned by automation, this was a display of seat of the pants flying and knowing the performance of your steed. I can remember quite a few air show displays that we put on with the B727 that looked pretty much like this from the flight deck and from the ground. So much so in fact that I thought for a moment this was one of our ex Air Force birds, one of which I know ended up flying cargo in Africa, but the history doesn't fit. Yeah I know it's a bit different doing a a well briefed and practiced air show display vs casually rocking off short finals for a 360 and back in for a 'stabilsed' approach, but the aeroplane doesn't know that!!

Aside from that, the SAM and small arms threat at some African fields over the ages have demanded 'sporty' approaches and departures that really couldn't be automated and certainly weren't procedural. I don't know what the threat to air in Mogadishu is today, but I remember in Salisbury, Rhodesia just before Joshua Nkomo lost the subsequent election to Robert Mugabe, we had to spiral down directly over the airfield and execute a curved short final that would make even a Kaitak veteran shudder. The approaches were known to harbor mobile SAM sites and small arms fire was very likely. Air Rhodesia lost two Viscounts to Strella SAM's.

" Following the second incident, Air Rhodesia added shrouding to the exhaust pipes of their Viscount aircraft to reduce their infrared signature, and painted the aircraft with a low-radiation paint as countermeasures against heat-seeking missiles" (Wiki).

So yes this was a ballsy and some might say unsafe maneuver but when flying in this part of the world there is always an element of risk that only human skill and experience is likely to overcome rather than automation or strict adherence to procedures. It's a fair bet this is not the first time he has had to do this either !!

Last edited by Lord Farringdon; 5th Dec 2019 at 01:08.
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