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Did you ever file an Air-miss?

Accidents and Close Calls Discussion on accidents, close calls, and other unplanned aviation events, so we can learn from them, and be better pilots ourselves.

Did you ever file an Air-miss?

Old 30th Jul 2015, 22:07
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Did you ever file an Air-miss?

Or Air-prox, interesting experience. First of all, indignation, how close we came and that other guy wasn't looking out at all! Secondly, reaction and the shakes set in when we landed safely, and think about how close we came.

And third, the investigation procedure, which is interesting, because they can very often verify the identity of that other guy! I have over the years had to make three official Air-miss reports.

One I didn't bother to file...flying a glider on final approach to Wycombe during a Notamed comp, had to take avoiding action when a black and yellow Pitts was doing the falling leaf or whatever on my track! So returning to base, I told the comp director, and he said "O, that was probably that idiot from White Waltham!"

So I called the tower/controller/whatever at White Waltham, and he said "Very sorry, but I am not allowed to give out that information!"

In that case, I said, I will file an airmiss!

The controller said "I'll just see if he's in the bar!...."

And sure enough the chap came on the phone and we discussed the incident, and he apologised, how about that!
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Old 31st Jul 2015, 01:35
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Well done, Mary. Glad you had a good outcome.

Sadly my experience with the Airprox Working Group, whichever side I have been on, has, on every occation been a negative one, and has driven me to the opinion that they are totally biased in favour of the Military, and CAT. The whole process is an utter waste of time, and money.

I would advise anyone who thinks they have been put in danger by the actions of another pilot, or pilots, to try and resolve it with the pilot concerned, and, if that doesnt work, either file an MOR, or forget about it.


MJ
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Old 31st Jul 2015, 05:13
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I remember one Airprox I was involved in occurred well outside controlled airspace south west of Farnborough, (Kingair departed Blackbushe and initially headed south west) but the AWG, without reference to radar recordings, decided it happened 5nm east of this position which would put it inside controlled airspace!!
On another occasion, a Puma departing from Odiham to the north west was warned of traffic north east of him heading west on the railway line, and promptly filed an airprox (airmiss in those days), but the Puma had the other traffic on his right thus should have given way!!
My personal one was departing from Halton in an AX3 heading south west, suddenly a Citation appeared from my blind spot over the right wing and banked across ahead of me so his registration was hidden from me. Miss distance was less than 500ft.
OK he was on my right but I couldn't see him 'til he was ahead and in any case, by exposing me to his slipstream, he was endangering my aircraft!
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Old 31st Jul 2015, 08:01
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Chevron, that sounds pretty scary! Its not often you actually can see the other guy's registration, let alone remember it in the freak of the moment!

I was flying in the Interservices Regional Gliding Comp a few years back, and got a bit careless in avoiding a well known parachuting site that had been mentioned in briefing. The rule is, when near a parachuting site, be sure to go around it on the DOWNWIND side, because of course when the meatbombers have unloaded the skydivers, the whole bunch will be descending on the UPWIND side of the airfield.

I suddenly realised that the glider I had been following had gone right through the middle of their zone....I jinked to the downwind side and had no further problems...I thought.

On completing the task and handing in my barograph, I was informed the Director wanted to see me in his office. This is never good news....

It seems the Chief Instructor of the Parachute Club had been FREEFALLING at the time I had meandered into his territory....he maneuvered his chute close enough to READ MY TAIL NUMBER....and on landing, he phoned the Interservices Gliding Director at Hullavingdon. Who gave me a very severe rollicking indeed, and also brought it up in front of the entire congregation next day at briefing. Of course they took all my points away for the day....
but the worst thing was the humiliation.

Better than having the skydiver break your wing, however.
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Old 31st Jul 2015, 08:53
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I've filed once.

I was flying a microlight off a beach - non-radio, enjoying the view. A PA28 came along, flew alongside me, then turned directly towards me forcing me into a steep descending turn - fortunately with no nasty outcome. I was easily able to read his registration, and filed an airprox.

The pilot, who I imagine had a lengthy chat with his club CFI later without tea and biscuits, reported that he wasn't looking out as he was receiving "flight information" from an airport 30 miles away, and they had reported no traffic.

A moment of humour was that I reported my altitude on the QNH. The airprox board chappie phoned me up and asked where I'd got my QNH value from as I'd not flown from an airport, was non-radio, and there was no record of me contacting any airport.

"Well, I took off from the beach at low tide, and it read zero halfway between the high tide and low tide marks".

He went silent and thoughtful for a minute, then commented that there *might* be something wrong with that, and he'd get back to me. He never did.



In recent years - I write having sat in on one Airprox Board meeting as an observer, and read a reaosnable proportion of the reports, it seems to me that the main deficiency with the system as it presently is, is that whilst they try fairly hard to analyse the causes of problems, there's a massive reluctance to issue any kind of recommendations that might reduce them. Taking that leaf from AAIB's book would seem to me to be an improvement.

G
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Old 31st Jul 2015, 10:31
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Not including TCAS avoidance I've had 2 serious 'air misses'. Popped out of cloud in a heavy four jet to find similar type crossing right to left same level. We passed very close behind him and got considerbly thrown around by the wake turbulence. We were under radar control. The controller was dismissed.

Dropping paras from a BN2T in a danger zone I wasn't keeping a look out because the zone was exclusively mine. I know, no excuse. Missed a glider by feet. 3 at the most. Later in the day he came to see me and started to rant and rave about me nearly killing. Got his details and reported him for the incursion.
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Old 31st Jul 2015, 12:35
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Four. An instructor with student. Crossed from the deadside to downwind at the runway mid-point. I was on the downwind leg and a collision course. Avoiding action taken and words were said after parking up next to him.
I didn't bawl him out as he looked a bit shaken, and young enough to start crying.


Close call when descending on base leg. Air ambulance on a shout. Not on our frequency.


Left turn on climb out. Met a Corporate twin on right base, wrong runway. Violent manoeuvre to avoid collision. She was very apologetic, and very beautiful. I forgave her.


At about 200ft on climb-out. American fast-jet pilot went under me at full chat down the reciprocal. I'm sure it would have been impressive if only he'd done it at the airfield he was talking to. The airshow crowds must have thought he was the ultimate Stealth. Invisible and silent.
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Old 2nd Aug 2015, 19:29
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I filed an online airprox in early May, with a paraglider. The Airprox report was out in July. I found the Airprox guys good to deal with. I wasn't receiving a service, but monitoring 127.275. If I'd been changing frequency, or entering a squawk, I could have hit him. The report has a link to the YT video.
PS The suggestion of monitoring 135.475 is OK, with a second box, but I wouldn't want to lose Scottish.
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Old 3rd Aug 2015, 11:01
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An instructor with student. Crossed from the deadside to downwind at the runway mid-point. I was on the downwind leg and a collision course.
I've been here; but I was the student. Was a bit blaze about look out til that point. Definitely not now!
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Old 3rd Aug 2015, 18:43
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Many years ago. It was dark, northbound London-Glasgow Trident flight approaching Scottish airspace FL240 on low level sector frequency. In opposite direction Glasgow-London BAC-11 flight planned FL250 on high level sector frequency

BAC1-11 called on high level frequency "xxx level FL230". Controller responded "report level FL250", Response "roger climbing FL250". Soon after both aircraft saw each other one climbing through the other but on different sector feequencies. Very close call.

Southbound should have been transferred to low level sector so as to maintain vertical separation. High level sector controller didn't know about FL240 northbound.

Much has changed since then.
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Old 14th Sep 2015, 20:21
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Been involved in two. In one report the Working Group stated that I and my Supervisor had not filed our versions of the incident and couldn't remember the incident when quizzed on it as part of the investigation. Piffle, we both filed our reports (independently) immediately. No one from the Working Group spoke to either of us. The narrative of their report stated that one of the aircraft involved had been operating outside of its agreed levels (under RIS) a few seconds before the Airprox although this level bust was never alluded to in the report's conclusions. Didn't do much for my confidence in the system.
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Old 14th Sep 2015, 22:09
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About 14 years ago I was flying from Sywell to Thruxton. I was at 2200', about 10 miles to go, in a PA28. I'd been on frequency with Brize, they transferred me to Farnborough a short while ago but Farnborough are too busy to provide any service, that's OK, viz. is great and anyway I'll be talking to Thruxton in a few minutes.

I'm the only one in the aircraft. Cloudbase is over 3000 feet, 3/8 cumulus cloud. Nice day for VFR flying.

I saw an aircraft at about my altitude, quite a distance way, off my port quarter, about halfway between my port wing & astern. Looked at it for a few seconds, it's moving left relative to me so it's going to go behind me. No problem.

A short time later (yes... I should have looked more frequently...) it's still there, and it's a bit larger, and now it's apparent position isn't changing. He has me on his right, he's faster, he should give way but hasn't seen me - and suddenly, he's getting larger very quickly.

I shoved the throttle to idle, pushed the nose down hard, left aileron & right rudder, down I go - and I actually heard his engine as he flew over the top of me a few seconds later. He didn't change course or altitude.

I should have reported it.

The rest of the flight was fine but at Thruxton I had to use both hands to hold the mug of tea....

Edited to add:
At White Waltham, the circuit was/is very busy at times and yet I never had an airmiss or anything remotely close. My instructor drilled it into me that my eyes had to be outside the aircraft pretty much all of the time, and I had to pay close attention to radio calls from other aircraft and to maintain a mental image of who was where. So there were a couple of occasions when following her training meant things went smoothly - on one occasion, I made a slightly early "downwind" call because I could see an aircraft that would have otherwise joined the downwind leg a bit too close for comfort, they instead went behind me (as they should have done). On another occasion I heard someone call "straight in, long finals" instead of joining the circuit (silly bugger) and it was obvious he wasn't going to do anything other than do what he'd said... so I let him do his thing & landed after him.
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Old 19th Sep 2015, 21:41
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Snoop

End 70s' Alain Dreyer and two friends tried to add power to their hang glider, with accelerator in their mouth, landing and taking off on their feet. They flew in the level Rhone River Delta south east of France. Nobody knew : it was not official...
Not far from there a visual trajectory was mandatory in VFR from Istres to Montpellier, and a C160 was flying there at 150m... But under that path you had a nudists' beach and pilots were happy to follow exactly the path scrutinating on the ground... (Imagine how interested) At some moment one of the pilot scanned the sky a little higher and his surprise was immense seeing a hang glider above him not very far. Immediately he reported by radio "aiirmiss with a hang glider" ! ATC knew that no mountain was there to allow an hang glider to fly at 150m and answered "confirm airmiss with a hang glider"! ...the pilot of the C160 confirmed " airmiss with a hang glider" ! ATC in Istres were sure now they listened well, were the pilots drunk? Impossible to have a hang glider.. And the air miss was confirmed in flight and after landing... In the french air administration, military and civilian were laughing and mocking the pilots looking the nudists and thinking they had seen a hang glider !Two days later Alain Dreyer was going in Paris telling about their flights without knowing that story that he discovered... He confirmed that one of the trio was flying near Ste Marie de la Mer beneath the nudists beach and they were able to climb higher than 150m !
The mystery was resolved... And the winner was Alain Dreyer who has been allowed to fly without specific license and creating the french powered ultralight federation FFPLUM. And shame to the C160 pilots surprised by the hang glider because they were watching the nudists...

Last edited by roulishollandais; 18th Oct 2015 at 08:52. Reason: 150m/500' not 150'
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Old 20th Sep 2015, 09:10
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My personal one was departing from Halton in an AX3 heading south west, suddenly a Citation appeared from my blind spot over the right wing and banked across ahead of me so his registration was hidden from me. Miss distance was less than 500ft.
OK he was on my right but I couldn't see him 'til he was ahead and in any case, by exposing me to his slipstream, he was endangering my aircraft!
Chevron

We sometimes fly OCAS in the Citation but we always get special attention from the radar units realising its a jet and get handed over from one to the other with a radar service that smaller, slower aircraft would not get.

There maybe some Citation drivers who will bomb along OCAS lowish level at 250KTS but I know I will pull the speed back to 160 to 180 KTS to try and be at fast piston twin speeds

It is possible that he was never advised of you and never even saw you? So maybe blaming him as its your right to that airspace is not well founded. Did you have a transponder?

Pace
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Old 20th Sep 2015, 11:49
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Snoop

Single pilot Citation ?
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Old 20th Sep 2015, 11:51
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Mary

One Airmiss filed due to passing a glider in cloud in the descent from FL100 OCAS In a twin piston aircraft.

The incident occurred whilst descending in cloud and IMC and the glider passed close enough to see it in cloud so maybe 20 to 30 meters

This happened in the evening about 10 miles south of the Long Mynd and started a discussion here on gliders flying in IMC without a transponder, proper IFR procedures and equipment while powered aircraft on permits or highly kitted home builts are NOT

Pace
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Old 21st Sep 2015, 19:13
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That must have been pretty scary, Pace. I am pleased you were still looking out and saw the glider. Did he see you? can you give a reference to the report?

Gliders, I believe, were still flying in those days - relying on the odds of two aircraft colliding in uncontrolled airspace....the records show it has hardly ever happened. Most midairs happen in the circuit, it seems. Most of my frights have been over active airfields in VMC.

So very few pilots were bold enough to fly in cloud. Or at night. So both are much safer than flying in the circuit in VMC......

Nowadays nervous glider pilots invest in Flarm. I am told it works very well, if the other aircraft has it.
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Old 22nd Sep 2015, 09:41
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Originally Posted by Pace View Post
Chevron

We sometimes fly OCAS in the Citation but we always get special attention from the radar units realising its a jet and get handed over from one to the other with a radar service that smaller, slower aircraft would not get.

There maybe some Citation drivers who will bomb along OCAS lowish level at 250KTS but I know I will pull the speed back to 160 to 180 KTS to try and be at fast piston twin speeds

It is possible that he was never advised of you and never even saw you? So maybe blaming him as its your right to that airspace is not well founded. Did you have a transponder?

Pace
This occurred in the '90s before the advent of TCAS and London LARS, Luton had already stopped providing LARS so he probably wasn't on a radar service. As the AX3 doesn't have a transponder (only carries a battery to operate the starter motor!) TCAS wouldn't have been any use to him anyway.
I wasn't blaming him for the Airprox; he must have seen me. What concerned me was the deliberate turn from my right to pass ahead of me.
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Old 17th Oct 2015, 16:27
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In late 70 's was over long beach area at 3,000 ft in a C 340 getting set up to land at LAX when I found myself nose to nose with another aircraft opposite direction about 3 seconds away. I rolled inverted and pulled back just enough to give us about 50 ft clearance. About a second before he passed he made a right climbing turn so kept my wings parallel to his then rolled back level after passing. I didn't file a report.
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Old 4th Nov 2015, 18:32
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I have never filed one, but two close calls spring to mind:

The first was during training, on my second solo cross country. I was descending on final approach at around 500' (private grass strip) and a Hawk flew under me, about 150' below. A few moments after seeing it, I realised I wasn't descending any longer, as I had subconsciously applied full power.

The other one I recall was about 5 minutes after climb out, at perhaps 1800' a big twin (not sure of the type, but 4/5 windows down the fuselage) descended from above me right in front of my nose, on the same heading. He was low wing, I was high wing, so it would have been difficult for either of us to see. 'Phew, that was close' I thought as I watched it fly off ahead. Just then, he started a turn back towards me. I turned right to avoid and started climbing, as he by now was lower than I was, but he turned left at the same time, and this time passed just under me.

Maybe that one would have been worth filing...
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