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B17 crash at Bradley

Old 2nd Oct 2019, 18:43
  #21 (permalink)  
 
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Would the outcome be any different?
If an emergency had been declared, the controller would have “rolled the equipment” a few minutes sooner. That might have made a difference.
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Old 2nd Oct 2019, 18:45
  #22 (permalink)  
 
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Just a "nutshell" distillation of the information currently available:

"On another subject, some bad news. This morning, around 1000 hr. lcl, the Collings Foundation B-17 crashed at Bradley Field Connecticut. I googoled "B-17 crash Connecticut" and got the bad news. It was a Collings Foundation B-17 with three crew and ten PAX on board, and there are reported fatalities as a result of the crash at BDL. An aerial photo shows the remains of the plane up against a ground storage tank (reportedly a de-icing facility) just outside of a hangar. Almost the entire fuselage appears to have been consumed by fire. Reportedly, the airplane encountered difficulties soon after takeoff and was trying to return to Bradley. What a shame."

Prayers for all involved.

Grog
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Old 2nd Oct 2019, 18:46
  #23 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by India Four Two View Post
I’ve just listened to the Live ATC audio.
http://archive-server.liveatc.net/kb...2019-1330Z.mp3

18:41 “We would like to return to the field.”
22:40 Crash alarm in the background.


Here's an excerpt of the LiveATC clip with the conversation and the post-accident approach cancellations. Number 4 engine (not number 3 as an eyewitness earlier reported) is indeed mentioned in the B-17 transmissions.
Attached Files
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Old 2nd Oct 2019, 19:10
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Another update on casualties from the Hartford Courant:

Sources told the Courant that five people have been confirmed killed in the crash and authorities fear the number will go higher. Rescuers searching through the wreckage have not reached the front of the airplane, where the pilot and co-pilot were seated.
Three of the victims taken to Hartford Hospital are in critical condition, said Dr. Jonathan Gates, chief of the hospital’s trauma department, in a separate press conference. Two have moderate injuries, and one was described as “minimally injured.”
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Old 2nd Oct 2019, 19:48
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[,First, thanks to those who posted ATC links.

Great respect for the approach controller with 4 or 5 jet inbounds and a joyriding 'Stang all over the air. Solid, respectable job, though I can see why some EU pilots have fits over the informal tone sometimes used.

Finally, having enjoyed rides on comparable aircraft (17, 24, 25, 29, and others) I hope the NIMBY crowd which appeared after the Trimotor [type] crash in Switzerland, (many of whom I doubt could tell a cylinder from a frying pan) do not rise in opposition to the continuation of these incomparable displays of living history. Hard to describe why I need to blink repeatedly when I see those actual crew members from the 40s, gazing at or touching the aircraft which formed such a pivotal part of their lives.
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Old 2nd Oct 2019, 19:55
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Originally Posted by finfly1 View Post
Hard to describe why I need to blink repeatedly when I see those actual crew members from the 40s, gazing at or touching the aircraft which formed such a pivotal part of their lives.
So true. I wonder if that Mustang was also a part of the Collingsby Foundation group due to be there. From the Courant: "Two World War II fighter planes and three bombers will be at Bradley International Airport through Thursday.

The historic aircraft, owned by the Collings Foundation of Stow, Mass., will be open for tours through Thursday at Tac Air, 85-205 Combs Gate Drive, just off Route 75 in Windsor Locks. Flights aboard the aircraft are also available.

The aircraft are a B-17G Flying Fortress heavy bomber, a B-24J Liberator heavy bomber, a B-25 Mitchell medium bomber, a P-51 Mustang fighter and a P-40 Warhawk fighter."

Full article here: https://www.courant.com/news/connect...ygu-story.html
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Old 2nd Oct 2019, 20:01
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Originally Posted by gearlever View Post
Would the outcome be any different?

R.I.P.
Perhaps. It's impossible to tell for sure, of course, but that isn't the point.
I was trained as a U.S. Navy Fighter Pilot and very early on I was told that when things so South, declare an emergency, stop asking permission, and start telling the controllers what you intend to do. You don't ask for permission to land, you TELL them you're landing. And you don't ask for a runway which will make their job easy, you TELL them what runway you are going to use and you start heading that direction without waiting for someone to say it's OK. You certainly should NOT ask them to accommodate your emergency "when you get a chance", especially if they aren't even aware you are involved in a potentially fatal emergency. In this case, the controller might have thought one of the passengers had to go to the bathroom or something, or that someone left their luggage behind. Why rush?

Let the tower worry about sorting out any traffic problems. Let them apologize for making things inconvenient for others. You job is to take care of your crippled aircraft and that's all you should be worried about. Saving seconds or minutes can make all the difference.

Even if you're not bold enough to take charge, at least tell the tower that you're having an emergency. Generally speaking, once the ground guys know you're in trouble, they will pull out all the stops to help you resolve the problem quickly and safely. But if they are unaware, how can they help?

Last edited by Pilot DAR; 2nd Oct 2019 at 20:05. Reason: Fixed typo
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Old 2nd Oct 2019, 21:13
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In that aerial photo, it looks to me like the rudder trim tab is set for a lot of left rudder.
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Old 2nd Oct 2019, 21:38
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My son-in-law (at Collins Aerospace, off to the side of the end of 06) says one of his co-workers was on the apron earlier in the day, and he said they were having engine problems with the B-17. I do not know if this person understands the usual handling of an R-1820, so apply sufficient salt.
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Old 2nd Oct 2019, 21:45
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Wikipedia article

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Octobe...Fortress_crash
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Old 2nd Oct 2019, 22:21
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Originally Posted by obgraham View Post
What a sad day, especially for the injured or killed, and also for the aircraft.

I've been up in Nine-O-Nine twice. Got to sit in the left hand pilot seat for 10 minutes and make a couple of gentle turns in her. What an experience!
Plus one on the sad day.
I flew on that aircraft about ten years ago when it was in Everett - it was a priceless experience.
Finfly1, agree on the hope this doesn't stop or seriously discourage this sort of activity. When I took my joyride on Nine-O-Nine, I keep thinking what a shame it was that my WW II veteran dad wasn't alive to come along - he would have absolutely loved it. He wasn't a pilot, but he was quite familiar with the B-17 - when I was a kid we'd watch the TV series 'Twelve O'clock High' (based on the movie of the same name) and he was always talking about what a great aircraft the B-17 was.
On my ride, there was a father (roughly my age) with his teenage son. Before takeoff, his son appeared seriously bored - messing with his phone. But five minutes into the flight the kid was completely enthralled - started using his phone to video everything. Quite literally living history.
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Old 2nd Oct 2019, 22:25
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Let the Speculation Begin

Listening to the tower conversation with the B-17 (N90312CF), the pilot reported: " garbled ... number four engine. We'd like to return and blow it out". This sounds like there was a fire involved, but that should not have caused a control problem with the airplane unless the fire was well advanced. As to my speculation, well here goes. There may have been a massive oil leak in the No.4 engine resulting in rapid loss of engine oil pressure and ability to feather the propeller. The leaking oil may have caught fire. Inability to feather an outboard engine (in this case, no.4) would cause serious control problems. End of speculation.

Nine-O-Nine was a beautiful airplane, and its loss was a disaster. The loss of lives aboard was a tragedy. God bless.

Grog
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Old 2nd Oct 2019, 22:38
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My younger brother bucked rivets inside of that aircraft repairing damage that occurred after it went off the end of the runway at Beaver County Airport in 1987. Sad loss of life today.
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Old 2nd Oct 2019, 22:42
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Latest from Hartford Courant is 7 dead, 7 injured. A few years back a friend, Navy WWII veteran, UDT, had the opportunity to ride in a B-17, not sure if it was this one. He was so proud of having the opportunity. Hope this incident doesn't stop having these opportunities for veterans and the children, grandchildren of these veterans. Even though Jerry was a diver, the B-17 flight was something he talked about right to his last days.
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Old 2nd Oct 2019, 22:47
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God Bless All Involved

9-0-9 is the screen photo on my phone since 2013 after my ride out of Ramona CA with my fathers flag, a B17 bombardier in WWII. RIP to passengers and crew 🇺🇸
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Old 2nd Oct 2019, 23:04
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https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-49909735
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Old 2nd Oct 2019, 23:08
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Here's another edit (not mine) from LiveATC.net including the tower and approach clips in the posts above along with the ground control conversation. This link will play on a phone or tablet. The .zip files I posted above seem to only work on a computer, .mp3 is not a valid extension for a PPRuNe attachment.

https://forums.liveatc.net/index.php...0;attach=10529

American 622: Is that one of the vintage aircraft over there?
BDL Ground: Yeah, it crashed.
American 622: Damn.
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Old 2nd Oct 2019, 23:44
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Mindful of all the psychology, I think, 'We're going in the Hudson' was perhaps one of the most memorable lines ever transmitted, not least of all because it left the ATC guy in one of those bewildered states that was not helping anybody.
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Old 2nd Oct 2019, 23:53
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cpngrog.
The blowing out statement suggests to me that they may have had fouled plugs on the engine.
That would also explain why they didn't declare an emergency.

On the Connie for one example, fouled/non firing plugs are an engine shutdown condition.
Wunwing
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Old 3rd Oct 2019, 00:00
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Originally Posted by Wunwing View Post
cpngrog.
The blowing out statement suggests to me that they may have had fouled plugs on the engine.
That would also explain why they didn't declare an emergency.
A B-17 can fly just fine on three engines (and even with 13 people, they would not have been 'heavy' since there are no guns or bombs), so clearly there must be more to it than a simple engine failure.
I briefly talked with the pilots when I took my ride - they were unpaid volunteers - commercial airline pilots that flew the Collings aircraft just for the joy of it.
So sad...

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