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Old 12th Jun 2002, 23:02   #20 (permalink)

Avoid imitations
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Wandering the FIR and cyberspace often at highly unsociable times
Posts: 11,131
This one might identify me to a few of those out there that know this story already.

During a Central American Puma detachment we were ordered to fly an attractive French photographer. She wanted some "action shots". I was tasked to fly her and a young Army officer to a tiny helipad on the side of a 300' rocky outcrop above an army base. We hover jumped them off as there was a trailer already in situ and the pad wasn't big enough for a Puma in any event. We then did a couple of dummy approaches and finally picked up the trailer and underslung it away and back down into the army camp below after a couple of fly-bys for more photos.

Our final task was to recover the french photographer and army officer; they had to climb on from a one-wheel on hover. The crewman told me on intercom that she wanted to take more photographs whilst sitting on in the open doorway with her legs outside and her feet on the step, using the spare monkey harness to secure her from behind. The crewman told me he would sit alongside her, also in the open doorway to make sure she was OK. We got airborne like this, he then began laughing and asked me to do a wingover to the right to "Gi her a good look at the army camp". I obliged, to guffaws of laughter from crewman. As I rolled wings level, the crewman suddenly went quiet and I had to call him more than once to get him to speak to me on finals.

After shutdown I noticed he was looking extremely pale. I asked him if everything was alright; all he could do was nod. After his second cigarette he told me that he went quiet because halfway through the wingover he realised that he had forgotten to re-fasten his own monkey harness and had sat in the doorway with his hands on his knees, not restrained from falling out in any the top of the wingover he had gone light in his "seat" and nearly fallen out of the aircraft.
ShyTorque is offline   Reply With Quote