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Canadian Forces Snowbirds CT-114 down in British Columbia

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Canadian Forces Snowbirds CT-114 down in British Columbia

Old 18th May 2020, 20:55
  #81 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Airbubba View Post
It sure does look like a duffel bag of some sort rather than a seat cover. I just found a higher resolution version of the original picture and put it into the post above. From some of the file names it looks like this picture may have been taken in July 2019.
I'm sure it's a duffel bag. The brand appears to be Osprey... they do nice haversacks for hiking... never heard of them doing ejection seat covers.

Bloody hell if true - I wonder if there's a Safety Case for it - normalisation of deviance? RIP.
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Old 18th May 2020, 21:22
  #82 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by ASRAAMTOO View Post
So the question is, did the seats work as specified? In which case they are probably not suitable for use in the "high risk" environment of a formation display team.
Just thinking out loud here, but:
AP based solid rocket propellant is very stable and stores quite well (in my amateur rocketry activities I've successfully used AP propellant reloads that were 20+ years old), with one exception:
It can become very difficult to ignite. A layer of oxide often forms on the exposed surfaces which interferes with the ability of the igniter pyrogen to ignite the propellant. This can result in one or more of what we call a 'chuff'' where the propellant partially ignites (resulting in a 'chuff' of exhaust), then a pause while the chamber pressure/temp come back up and either it 'chuffs' again or it properly ignites.
Perhaps an decades old ejection seat rocket motor didn't light cleanly?
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Old 18th May 2020, 21:45
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A retired Snowbird pilot was interviewed and he said the ejection system is not 0/0 it is 0/60 (or 60/0) .... it is old school and you need a lot more altitude than modern seats .... he also said the pilot followed procedures for power failure .... nose up , gain altitude , hit air-start .... and if no start then eject ..... and that is exactly what the pilot did ... except he ejected a bit late.

I listened to the video and there is definitely an engine "pop" just after takeoff and that is when the pilot tried to gain altitude.

(my guess) is the delay in ejecting was maybe because the pilot wanted to make sure his passenger ejected .... she was part of the team but as public relations .... she would have had some training but he wanted to make sure.

No witness reports of chutes fully opening .... pilot hit a roof and badly injured .... sadly the lady passenger hit a tree and did not survive.

Only "good" thing is the jet went straight down into a front yard so minimum residential damages
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Old 18th May 2020, 22:44
  #84 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by ASRAAMTOO View Post
My deepest sympathies to all those touched by this crash.

For now I'm not going to comment on how the aircraft arrived in the position it did. I do however find myself surprised by the video of the ejection. I am very familiar with MB seats and the sequencing thereof but know very little about the seats fitted to the CT 114.

The large smoke plumes and lack of an early seat separation were a surprise to me. I would have expected seats of that vintage to use sequenced charges (or even a single charge) as they moved up the rails and for an immediate drogue deployment with separation occurring as soon as tumbling stopped.

Difficult to accurately assess height and ROD but it looked like a better result should have been obtained.

So the question is, did the seats work as specified? In which case they are probably not suitable for use in the "high risk" environment of a formation display team.

Several have commented on the Snowbirds use of what is essentially a vintage jet for their displays. I am not against that providing the risks are minimised. Lets face it the alternative would probably be a Harvard 2 or disbandment. I wonder if the fitment of something like an MB Mk 8 seat has ever been considered for the Snowbirds CT 114. I know it is available as a retrofit for the T37 which also has (albeit different) a Weber seat.

Perhaps the conversation was along the lines of " we struggle to justify the costs of the Snowbirds as it is, if you insist the current seats are unsafe we will just can the team".

Whatever happens as a result of this accident I hope the Snowbirds continue. I'd love it to be in the CT 114 but I think it will cost money. Hopefully that money can be found.
Exactly.
That ejection looks very odd indeed - I've never seen smoke like that.
Possible EFATO or low thrust - use of energy to climb to height, attempted turn back and stall.
They were well into the stall before they got out; must have been right on the edge of the seat envelopes.
Pictures of those bags on top of the seats just beggars belief...
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Old 18th May 2020, 23:03
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Photo of the incident departure. No bags on top of the seats.
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Old 18th May 2020, 23:11
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Originally Posted by tdracer View Post
Just thinking out loud here, but:
AP based solid rocket propellant is very stable and stores quite well (in my amateur rocketry activities I've successfully used AP propellant reloads that were 20+ years old), with one exception:
It can become very difficult to ignite. A layer of oxide often forms on the exposed surfaces which interferes with the ability of the igniter pyrogen to ignite the propellant. This can result in one or more of what we call a 'chuff'' where the propellant partially ignites (resulting in a 'chuff' of exhaust), then a pause while the chamber pressure/temp come back up and either it 'chuffs' again or it properly ignites.
Perhaps an decades old ejection seat rocket motor didn't light cleanly?

Except I donít think this type of seat has a rocket motor.
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Old 18th May 2020, 23:19
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Originally Posted by junior.VH-LFA View Post



Photo of the incident departure. No bags on top of the seats.
If this is indeed the actual departure then it would appear that the person who landed on the roof was in the right hand seat. Is it normal for non aircrew passengers to sit in the left hand seat of a Tutor?


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Old 18th May 2020, 23:35
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Indeed, the earlier photo of Captn Casey sitting in 'her' jet has her name below the cockpit on the left side too.

In the video from the guy smoking I hear a pop as the aircraft draws level with him, but I don't hear a pop from the video with the girl saying 'show off'.

Very sad event.

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Old 18th May 2020, 23:50
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Originally Posted by ASRAAMTOO View Post
If this is indeed the actual departure then it would appear that the person who landed on the roof was in the right hand seat. Is it normal for non aircrew passengers to sit in the left hand seat of a Tutor?
I had the same thoughts. Captain MacDougall had the red team helmet when he landed on the roof. Captain Casey appears to be in the left seat wearing a gray helmet in this photo.



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Old 19th May 2020, 00:29
  #90 (permalink)  
 
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Media Conference today featuring Snowbirds Commanding Officer Lieutenant Colonel Mike French. By request, he answers many of the same questions in English and French.

He calls the mishap a confluence of worst case scenarios and says that yesterday it became their worst nightmare.

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Old 19th May 2020, 00:35
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Opinion and a bit more background on the CT-144 from You Tube user "blancolirio" who is a former USAF pilot:


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Old 19th May 2020, 00:41
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From my point of view as a former OC Armament in the days when we had RAF-manned ejection seat bays, the Weber CL-41 seat is a very old design dating back to the 1950s.

When calling it a "0/60" seat, that is before taking any downward vector into account - and there was a significant one here.

Also, the CL-41 does not have a rocket pack and the associated "dial-a-weight" function which adjusts the angle of the rocket pack to have the line of thrust through the C of G of the seat occupant.

It was not until the late-1960s when seats like the Martin Baker Mk H7 used in the Phantom started to get all the bells and whistles that most fast jet aircrew today would be familiar with.

MB H7 Seat: http://www.ejectionsite.com/f4seat.htm

Weber CL-41 Seat: http://www.ejectionsite.com/ct114seat.htm
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Old 19th May 2020, 01:09
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Originally Posted by RAFEngO74to09 View Post
Opinion and a bit more background on the CT-144 from You Tube user "blancolirio" who is a former USAF pilot:
While I appreciate him offering his expert analysis as a former tanker pilot, I'm not sure his claim at 4:00 that the Snowbirds are by far the largest jet demonstration team with the largest number of aircraft in formation is correct.
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Old 19th May 2020, 02:23
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Originally Posted by junior.VH-LFA View Post
Photo of the incident departure. No bags on top of the seats.
Hmmm.

Other images show that Capt Jennifer Casey had a team red helmet. Also shown are her designation and name "Public Affairs Officer * Capt Jenn....." beside the cockpit.

This image does not have a three word title and the LHS occupant has a grey helmet.

Also the background is not appear to me to be consistent with a takeoff from Kamloops 09. There should be a big river behind the aircraft (not visible) and rising ground far behind that.About a mile away from the runway.

Finally they were on a transit and they do seem to carry bags on transits.

Of course many of these can be explained away but I don't think that is the flight in question.



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Old 19th May 2020, 02:29
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Pilots seem to fly from both LHS and RHS, perhaps it depends on their position in the formation?
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Old 19th May 2020, 03:39
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Originally Posted by jimjim1 View Post
Hmmm.

Other images show that Capt Jennifer Casey had a team red helmet. Also shown are her designation and name "Public Affairs Officer * Capt Jenn....." beside the cockpit.

This image does not have a three word title and the LHS occupant has a grey helmet.
Here's a still from a recent video showing the gray helmet. The name on the side looks something like 'Avionics Technician Cpl Kay'. The headphones (or hearing protectors) and possibly a dark bag seem to be behind the seat.




Here is a Facebook post by a photographer who goes by the handle of Saspotting:


https://www.facebook.com/saspotting/

I'd say the pictures are probably legit.
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Old 19th May 2020, 03:49
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Originally Posted by tartare View Post
Yes - I do know that
Have a look at multiple ejection videos on the web.
Flames, yes.
A bit of white smoke, occasionally.
First time I've seen that degree of brown/black smoke.
And there's more from one seat than the other.
The Tutor is a 1960s era aircraft - does it still use the Weber seats?
Perhaps just a different type of propellant...
I thought that was unusual.

An observer saw the pilot "20 feet off the ground" and his parachute was still straight up. The nurse who worked on the passenger said her seat was beside her and the parachute was trailed but not open. Nurse interviewed on CBC an hour ago. She said she cannot believe the pilot survived.
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Old 19th May 2020, 03:55
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Iím pretty sure the red you are seeing on her helmet is a visor cover.

For me it was vintage era ejection seats that led to her untimely death. Iím not sure that is forgivable. When the last option becomes the only option and it is older than you are....
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Old 19th May 2020, 04:23
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Originally Posted by ozbiggles View Post
Iím pretty sure the red you are seeing on her helmet is a visor cover.
Yep, it says 'PAO'. Here it is on the red helmet from a picture posted above.



Originally Posted by ozbiggles View Post
For me it was vintage era ejection seats that led to her untimely death. Iím not sure that is forgivable. When the last option becomes the only option and it is older than you are....
The predictable calls to ground the planes from 'experts' including a New York aviation lawyer and a guy who was a Canadian Forces aviation technician in the 1980's:

https://www.ctvnews.ca/canada/crash-...-say-1.4944146

https://www.ctvnews.ca/video?clipId=1960912
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Old 19th May 2020, 04:29
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Originally Posted by dave.rooney View Post
I had a look at Google Maps of the area around CYKA. An engine failure on takeoff leaves you with the choices of a Domtar pulp & paper mill on the south side of the river, or residential neighbourhoods on the north (and the river straight ahead). None of those options seem particularly good. Perhaps the pilot was at least trying to turn towards the northwest where there's a bit of open space near the airport as well as the golf course.
There were two choices...eject or ditch in the river. The river was straight ahead and into wind. Eject raised the issue of positioning the aircraft to avoid ground damages and injuries. There was no possibility of that from a right turn after a second or so of the zoom. The other Tutor was well clear.

Had he been able to transition from the zoom to glide north to eject the aircraft would have come to earth in desert hills. Had he turned right, he could have pointed anywhere south and ejected at the top of the zoom or after stabilizing for optimal eject conditions. There is nobody on the south side of the Thompson. Nothing but desert hills.

Land on the river, unstrap and get out seems so obvious, but I suspect that is not something the military would ever consider. There was no realistic place to do a forced landing on land, certainly not that pulp mill.

Here is the overhead. The two yellow pins are where the pilot was found and where the aircraft impacted. It is 900 yards north to a safe impact area.

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