View Full Version : Facing death again, ho hum....

20th Apr 2004, 08:05
I found something very inspirational on another thread...

So, speaking as someone involved in aviation, sort of, just when was the last time I faced death? My own, I mean. I often cackle with merriment over the obituary pages, especially when my name doesn't feature.

Of course here we are not counting that first look in the mirror every morning preparatory to shaving, when one wonders who that haggard git in the mirror is. That sure looks like death, some mornings! Whatever happened to that beaming, unwrinkled phiz, anyway?

Me, I went out playing with motorcycles again yesterday. Warp 2.1 down tree-lined roads (taking due care to always go between them rather than straight into them - safety tip Number One for riding on tree-lined roads) on a machine capable of truly insane velocities. (Safety tip Number Two: the throttle works in two directions. By closing it whenever one sees the Angel of Death beckoning one can achieve wonderful increases in personal safety.) Since these were German roads Warp 1.9 was allowed; it is not as if I am boasting of near-terminal insanity here but just the quotidian portion of facing death.

That one aside, there was the time I teased my mother-in-law when she was holding a bottle of frozen orange juice.... Or does attempted assisted suicide not count?

When I go to McDonalds nowadays I eat the salad. No facing death there! And in the bar I drink soda water, mostly. Also a retreat from facing death. Is this cowardice in the face of the enemy?

Anyone else had any near-death experiences they want to share? Skipping an item on a checklist, say? I realise that relative to normal people we aviators are a breed apart so that there must be many tales of derring-do and bravado out there just waiting to be told.

tony draper
20th Apr 2004, 08:16
Once had a .22 Hornet pass within a inch of me left ear,the crack made me deaf in that lug for half an hour, could have been worse of course.
David Wison always was a lousy shot.

20th Apr 2004, 08:18
I left the house once without washing the dishes or making the bed ... and was really surprised to find that such irresponsible actions did not cause a rip in the fabric of the universe!


tony draper
20th Apr 2004, 08:23
Come to think about it ,the above mentioned event took place forty years ago on the 12th of next month,just think had ones boiler been three inches to the left, the last forty years would never have happened.

20th Apr 2004, 09:20
Not an aviator, of course.

As I said on another thread a few days ago, ten years ago I was in a terrorist attack which might easily have ended fairly seriously for me.

About three and a half years ago, I was a pax in a car which did an end-over-end somersault. I remember being upside down. I walked away. Driver Ok after a few months. Seat Ibiza, if you must know. Good car.

When much younger, pax in another fairly serious car accident.

Had serious negotiations with uniformed armed men in Africa a few times.

One stinker of a flight with Cameroon Airways. Got on pprune to try and find out just how dangerous it had been. Never managed to get a clear answer.

And so on.

I know how I react in these situations.

20th Apr 2004, 09:24
""""""the last forty years would never have happened.""""""

Only for you Tony :}

My own most memorable sojourn with the grim reaper is a tiny shrapnel splinter which still managed to break my jaw, remove three teeth and exit the side of my mouth leaving me speaking like a ventriloquist's dummy for three weeks, albeit with a shocking scots accent :p

tony draper
20th Apr 2004, 09:29
Not true, subjectively the entire universe and everyone in it would have dissapeared in a instant, each of us carries the whole personel universe within our heads.

A few scars lend a man character Pilgrim.

20th Apr 2004, 09:34
'A few scars lend a man character...'
wrote Draper
or should I call you

20th Apr 2004, 12:40
My memories are hazy, but there were a few hundred thousand of us and I was the lone survivor... :p

a is dum
20th Apr 2004, 12:46
I once logged on to PPRuNe and my modem packed up within seconds.
Fortunately I managed to purchase another modem within the same afternoon.

Was a close one I tell you!

Send Clowns
20th Apr 2004, 13:01
Didn't anyone get suspiscious, airship? :}

High Wing Drifter
20th Apr 2004, 13:23
I was a m/c courier when I left school @ 16. A m/c, even if it was a 50cc race-replica moped, and a 16 year old lad are not generally combined to provide a definition for the term "risk averse." From that time until I was a 19 year old courier on a 500cc I faced death so many times that I would have needed a team of angels of death on constant vigil. I wouldn't be suprised if the portal between here and the beyod was a little restrictive of their constant commings and goings. Will he...won't he..OOooooh! Close one that. Never mind at least the tyre valve is reusable.

Methinks I shan't mention this in my first airline job application :uhoh:

20th Apr 2004, 13:53
Send Clowns, I may have shouted something like "Go with the flow chaps" as everyone turned to me for leadership. ;)

Personally, I blame the General. He could have accomplished the same result by sending just a few of us on the mission instead of the whole Army. What a waste... :yuk:

20th Apr 2004, 15:29
Was walking through a building site once. A brick fell from a great height, and just missed me shoulder by 2 inches.....

Caved me head in it did:*

20th Apr 2004, 15:34
Once hoisted a scaffolding and put it back on the ground, on a 380V cable which was cut consequently. When I grabbed the scaffolding I got the full 380V load. Afterwards the doc said it was my strong heart that saved me. Do have an occasional attack of clairvoyance though ;)

20th Apr 2004, 17:00
I was a passenger in a Nissan micra 3 years back,

Young male driver + Alcohol + Wet muddy country road/ Heavy rain + Excessive speed round sharp corner = Car ploughing into hedge and flipping over. There were six of us in the car and i wasn't wearing a seatbelt. When the car stopped i was sat on the inside of the roof! Car totallllllly mashed. Amazing that there were only minor injuries esp. to myself. The police should have been searching for heads. As it was the injuried were shipped to hospital and the rest of us went to a nightclub as had been originally planned (courtesy of Devon & Cornwall police), nursing minor scrapes.

Strangely i have never in my life been so high as that night, on seeing the car wreck i felt uber powerful, and hyped up.

It was an experience that had both good and bad sides - I wouldn't change that night or have it any other way.

20th Apr 2004, 17:14
Ssultana wrote
'Strangely i have never in my life been so high as that night, on seeing the car wreck i felt uber powerful, and hyped up.'
That's the adrenaline rush speaking, mate. Careful, it can be addictive.

20th Apr 2004, 21:16
Deep & inside a shipwreck, torch packed up, on my own...I know I know don't nag me!

Car surrounded by an angry mob who wanted to burn the occupants in a country thats boosting CNN revenues at the moment, vvveeeerrry scary.

Unexplained decision to pass on a lift 10 mins earlier than planned departure led to lift occupant (close friend) being killed in a blast and me surviving.

There's a few more. Don't know who's praying for me but they have worked hard in the past...

Isn't this a bit serious for JB?


20th Apr 2004, 21:19
What shipwreck was it? anything off the english coast?

20th Apr 2004, 21:39
WWII off Normandy, would have to check the log to give you a specific ID. It was an horrific experience BTW

20th Apr 2004, 21:42
how did you remember which way to go & didn't get disoriented?

20th Apr 2004, 21:47
Thanks, mini. never been in a wreck yet (inexperienced) but hope to go into some this summer.

20th Apr 2004, 22:27
Guys, this is severe thread drift but whatever...

thought I knew the way I came, turned and hit a bulkhead. decided to stop for 5 mins, let the silt setttle etc. I was not yet criticle for gas. During this time I recounted my movements and tried to get a picture of where I was in my head - planning the next direction to move to retrace my path. Tried it and met another dead end. Turned on my strobe, thinking it would illuminate - forget it!

My torch was a rechargeable affair so I flicked it and got a flash, no good.

Basically I groped my way around in pitch black and eventually saw a dark green shape and exited through it like an Exocet.

Just checked the log, Leopoldville, 42M. I have since carried redundancy in the lighting department on my kit.


Dead Heading,

Just read your latest.

Listen mate, don't do the wreck thing unless you've bin' trained. Wrecks are facinating but also death traps. Treat them like caves, read up on cave diving tecs.

Dive around the outside, pick up bits down tide but leave the penetration 'till later.

I'm an instructer, well into 4 figures, and an ex military diver. They demand the utmost respect. Trust me.

Its a hobby, remember that.


20th Apr 2004, 22:41
^^ Yeh, I know a guy who died in one, I'm not going inside the things till I've had the training, no fear :ok: .