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R44 Down on Melbourne Beach

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R44 Down on Melbourne Beach

Old 3rd Nov 2007, 13:02
  #81 (permalink)  
 
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Could the Low RPM horn have come on as a result of having full left boot in to stop the rotation.
Partly, I think you will find that the horn came on mostly because the collective was too high for the available engine power. Am I right in thinking the machine was rotating to the right?

Is it the case that if it rotated to the left then the aircraft was wind vaning itself and just got a bit over enthusiastic?
TW
I really think that your assumption of right rotation must be followed according to the ATSB report.

I suggest you dismiss your hypothesis in the second sentence.

The pilot more than likely had the LEFT pedal in to STOP the RIGHT ROTATION.

The pilot had only ever discussed (and that's speaks volumes for the lack of breadth of her training syllabus) the effects of LTE prior to this event according to the ATSB report.
- Not to mention discussing or training in LTA or VRS or any of the other baddies-. goddamn

The pilot may NOT have been aware that when the RRPM is very low as a result of a simple overpitch situation that the T/R may well run out of AUTHORITY, thus prompting a RIGHT YAW and an automatic reaction of MORE LEFT pedal IN.

Right pedal will unload, as will cyclic forward as will collective down. It's easy, pull your collective up at the hover until you are overpitching and try it.

At the end of the day little blame can really be apportioned a pilot who has unwittingly encountered a phenomina, which her previous training should have suited her for, had she been given it, in light of her tasking to be hovering at high AUW.

Once again, the responsibility for better training in these areas is required.
tet
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Old 3rd Nov 2007, 14:03
  #82 (permalink)  
manfromuncle
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LTE/LTA training is not in the JAA PPL syllabus.

But downwind quickstops are. Very Useful (not).
 
Old 3rd Nov 2007, 14:44
  #83 (permalink)  
 
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With a working enabled governor, can you get an R44 into low RRPM with pedal inputs? I'm assuming at least initially being within max continuous power limits.
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Old 3rd Nov 2007, 20:49
  #84 (permalink)  
 
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Does the rotation of the helicopter clockwise around the mast affect the RRPM measurement? I'm thinking about 550 RPM (for an R44?) at 102% would need 5% reduction to hit 97%, that's about 25 rpm drop, or once every 2 secs.

That R44 was rotating pretty quick - could that explain the horn going off at some stages of the problem, due to a relative measurement change?

I've heard before that LTE in a Jetranger can be exacerbated by the fuel governor sensing a lower RPM and reducing the fuel flow, but this may be a myth!

BW
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Old 3rd Nov 2007, 20:50
  #85 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by topendtorque
The pilot had only ever discussed (and that's speaks volumes for the lack of breadth of her training syllabus) the effects of LTE prior to this event according to the ATSB report.
- Not to mention discussing or training in LTA or VRS or any of the other baddies-. goddamn
The ATSB report says:

The pilot obtained a Private Pilot (Helicopter) Licence in the United Kingdom (UK) in 1996 and received 30 hours of flight training to upgrade to an Australian Commercial 7Pilot (Helicopter) Licence (CPL(H)) in 1999. The pilot did not recall loss of tail rotor effectiveness (LTE) being part of the training syllabus in the UK, but did recall LTE being discussed as part of the CPL(H) training in Australia. The pilot could not recall any further discussion of LTE since that training. That contrasted with the operator’s report of the recent conduct of a discussion with the pilot regarding LTE.
and:

The pilot expressed some knowledge of the recommended recovery techniques in response to LTE.


But where's this obsession arising here that she was OGE hovering? The report clearly states that she was in a slow orbit around a target banner towing helicopter, which she was filming: not in a hover!

While in a turn at low airspeed, and with a quartering tailwind, the helicopter began an uncommanded yaw to the right
and

The Australian Advanced Air Traffic System (TAAATS) replay of the flight showed that at 1229, the pilot of the R44 was flying slow anticlockwise orbits at 2,000 ft above ground level over Williamstown, while the pilot of the B407 was tracking north at approximately 30 kts and 1,600 ft over Hobsons Bay (figure 1).

As the pilot of the R44 turned through south towards the south-east, the helicopter began an uncommanded right yaw
Listening to the video, the Nr would seem to be close to 80% before recovery was finally initiated: no wonder the camera operator is breathing a bit heavily on the audio
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Old 4th Nov 2007, 02:39
  #86 (permalink)  
 
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The biggest problem with the pilot (besides she can't lower the collective) is she is overriding the governor! I dont think she overpitched.

I think she got spun around, and in her fright, put a death grip on the throttle. Then when she stomps in the pedal, and/or raised collective the gov can't increase power.

This is pretty evident to me because she is overriding it all the way down to the bottom. Even after she "recovers" and it flying along at the bottom, the horn goes off again. There is no way this could happen unless she was severely overpitching, (which I dont think is the case as she is flying along at the bottom)....or she I holding the grip so hard the gov cant roll the throttle up.

I have had several students do this. They get nervous and tense up on the throttle. For those used to flying turbines, the Robbie throttle continually moves by governor actuation. If you tense up on it, you will simply not allow the governor to work.

Just my .02...
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Old 4th Nov 2007, 06:38
  #87 (permalink)  
 
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Oh my, are we on again about this simple mishap? I'm going out on a limb here but... don't these kinds of upsets happen each day all over the world when relatively inexperienced pilots get in slightly over their heads? More than once I almost let a helicopter get away from me when I had less than 1,000 hours and was learning the ropes. Didn't we all?

Of course, none of my screw-ups were quite as spectacular as this one, nor were any caught on tape. And they never were in a bright orange R44 in front of a crowd of curious beachgoers either, but c'mon... This poor pilot's one instance of questionable airmanship has now generated two PPRuNe threads, a popular video and (God help us all) an official inquiry from the Australian ATSB.

O.K., so we have established that it was not LTE. I would also like to add that the sky is blue and that the Pope is a Catholic. She was almost hovering at high G/W and tried to turn downwind, using a fair dollop of pedal, no doubt. Now she knows what happens when you do that and I bet she won't do it again. And shouldn't that be the end of it? If she's an otherwise smart and competent pilot -which I'm sure she is- she will have learned from her experience and moved on.

Can we close the peanut gallery here at PPRuNe and allow her to get on with her life?
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Old 4th Nov 2007, 08:40
  #88 (permalink)  
 
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I'll second the motion, Rev,

I hope nobody has a video camera on me if I ever f**k up.

John
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Old 4th Nov 2007, 11:05
  #89 (permalink)  
 
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heli,

You say she was not in an OGE hover, but that statement is wrong. She didn't INTEND to be in an OGE hover, but she "fell" into one, and the power and pedal requirements eluded her. The rest of the story has been called LTE, but it was much more insidious, and much more understandable for what it was - failure to maintain flying speed while doing donuts.
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Old 5th Nov 2007, 11:44
  #90 (permalink)  
 
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Heli
There seems to negligent conflict that she had discussed the issue with someone.

The pilot expressed some knowledge of the recommended recovery techniques in response to LTE.

However if you or ATSB think that the quote above implies that a pilot has the capacity to EFFECT recovery from a DISCUSSED procedure then you should think again.
Why has the training syllabus in two countries, here in this example, been found wanting?

But where's this obsession arising here that she was OGE hovering? The report clearly states that she was in a slow orbit around a target banner towing helicopter, which she was filming: not in a hover!


Perhaps you missed this:-
‘The photographer, who was also a licensed helicopter pilot, reported that the helicopter had almost approached a hover as it turned downwind’
(corroborated from the ground)


The wind was reported from the North West. At the most it seems that the wind MAY have been displaced by one cardinal point or less, Hardly a constant quartering tailwind.

As the helicopter approached a hover, relative to the witnesses on the ground, it would have been placed in a position where the relative airflow over the T/R was approaching the forecast wind. I.E. fifteen knots of fresh air from behind, hardly a condition for LTE.

The T/R with positive EFFECT and its full AUTHORITY flicked around as Nick has said while the pilot was manipulating the collective toward an over-pitch by simply pulling up and not watching the MAP.

This is where the pilot became disorientated, and the RRPM horn went off, and unfortunately applied many incorrect control inputs, and, and, to the point where it must have only been a hairsbreadth away from M/R blade stall. They were indeed lucky to survive.
Of course the other pilot would have been scared witless, I don’t blame him at all.


Unfortunately we see many pilots trained in governer equipped A/C who don't monitor MAP and their first indication that they have pulled more than allowed is when the horn goes off or the xmon temp starts to light up.

Revolutionary you should think again :-
Now she knows what happens when you do that and I bet she won't do it again


Does she?
One of the elementary things a check pilot should do is to ambush pilots into exactly this type of scenario. They recover if they were taught the issue or either have the smarts to work it out from previous “discussion” or their own research or they don’t.
Then you simply explain and demonstrate and try again, fail the second time. Well that’s too bad.

If I was that pilot’s chief pilot I would have organised a check flight to see if indeed she has mastered the issue.

Despite earlier jocularity I still wouldn’t go too hard on the pilot, rather the systems that allowed her through these elementary lessons to this massive mistake should be checked, with the British CAA and our OZ CASA on the top of the list for criticism.

I mean be serious, she nearly killed them all.
tet

Last edited by topendtorque; 5th Nov 2007 at 12:00.
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Old 5th Nov 2007, 12:10
  #91 (permalink)  
 
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Topendtorque, I don't think it's the role of any check pilot to 'ambush' pilots into any type of scenario. Ambush? Like pull into a hover, whip the nose downwind, pull on the collective until the helicopter falls through and starts spinning around and the horn comes on and then cross your arms and say "you've got it"? What the hell kind of checkride is that?

If you're a check pilot I bet you would only do that once. You know why? Because once you get back on the ground (assuming you're still alive) and have had a chance to change into some clean underwear, you will resolve to never, ever, do that again. And that's what this pilot did. It's called learning from your mistakes.

Sure, it would be good to go over some basics with your check pilot after an incident like this and then go out and practice some recovery from VRS techniques but certainly not in the manner you describe.

Last edited by Revolutionary; 5th Nov 2007 at 19:42.
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Old 5th Nov 2007, 12:45
  #92 (permalink)  
 
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LTE, Rubbish,

TET, Rubbish,

She, being the pilot, was taken out for a short flight later and has not flown since.

She overpitched, ask the pilot sitting next to her, doing a job far beyond her experience. out over water, only reference a moving target, the other helicopter. Lost the plot.
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Old 5th Nov 2007, 18:15
  #93 (permalink)  
 
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Revolutionary
please let me explain better, I would never develop that scenario as you have described, good grief.

The check routine is simple, distract the pilot with idle chatter, while you get them to pull up to a predetermined height which you know will place them at almost zero airspeed, or better with a negative airspeed if it is to the downwind direction that you direct them. They usually will not anticipate early on that power and pedals will need CLOSE attention at that point.

Do it well away from the ground - and thus away from the close visual cues - keep talking and the pilot will, either stop listening and keep control when the machime starts to wave around or you grab it and ask why did you not keep it under control.

Very very simple, not terrifying but a bit disarming for them if they have never been into that situation before.

It should be mandated as part of "recovering from unusual attitudes or situations" prior to license issue, which is my point.

Had this pilot been through that she should never had made the mistake.

Deeper
pull your bloody head in, read the above.

It is extremely sad if the subject has not flown again simply because she developed a frightening situation only because of the prior lack of exposure to an incredibly simple routine which would have stopped immediately her entry into her situation.

It is all about anticipation and safety.

I do wish her well and hope that she may reconsider her decision and ask someone to show her the above simple routine.
tet
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Old 5th Nov 2007, 20:34
  #94 (permalink)  
 
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the day this happened i was out flying and heard the mayday call over the air.

i was working around other helicopters and using the numbers on the radio. the mayday call came out over the numbers! not on a monitored frequency. second it was a male voice screaming through the mic and only two bits of info were clear. that was MAYDAY 3 times. and in his words.

WERE GOING DOWN! , WERE GOIN IN HARD! MAY DAY 3 times

then the transmition stopped

the poor lass obviously had her hands full dealing with the situation to do any thing else.

i hear a month later i heard that she flew once more then left the industrie and went back to her old job.

the dream died for her which was sad to hear.
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Old 5th Nov 2007, 20:52
  #95 (permalink)  
manfromuncle
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"the mayday call came out over the numbers!"

Errr, what's "the numbers"?
 
Old 5th Nov 2007, 21:17
  #96 (permalink)  
 
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inter pilot frequency. 123.45. used by pilots to chat or exchance info
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Old 5th Nov 2007, 21:45
  #97 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by manfromuncle View Post
"the mayday call came out over the numbers!"

Errr, what's "the numbers"?
From the ATSB report:

"During the descent, the pilot transmitted a MAYDAY call to Essendon Tower and the photographer transmitted a MAYDAY call on frequency 123.45 MHz to alert the pilot of the B407."
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Old 5th Nov 2007, 23:13
  #98 (permalink)  
 
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thanks bravo. for the clarification

i have never read the report. only a good memory of what i heard that day over the radio.
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Old 6th Nov 2007, 07:48
  #99 (permalink)  
 
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No worries, bladepitch. I was really answering manfromuncle's question.

But from your personal experience of the event, it sounds like the 'photographer' was less 'alerting the pilot of the 407' but more 'putting out a cry for help'...
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Old 6th Nov 2007, 07:57
  #100 (permalink)  
 
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I'm with TET on this one - she found herself in a situation for which she was not adequately trained and scared herself sh8tless. High hovering and low speed manoeuvring are normal situations for commercial helo pilots to operate in but do the potential problems (and their recoveries) get covered on CPL training?
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