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Best spin I have heard since Bill Clinton and the definition of "is"

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Best spin I have heard since Bill Clinton and the definition of "is"

Old 5th Feb 2010, 03:29
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Join Date: Feb 2010
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Red face Best spin I have heard since Bill Clinton and the definition of "is"

I received a call today from an investment friend who had a question about the Bristow "earnings call" today. You can listen at this link
Bristow

In it, Bill C, the Bristow CEO, talks about their recent safety record. Amazingly, he considered the recent 332 debacle off the coast of Nigeria an "incident", surely not an accident, even though the aircraft was totaly destroyed. His rationale - The pilot made a "controlled landing into the water" so it's just an incident. Seems to beg the big question - if there was no mechanical malfunction (at least that's the rumor) and the pilot basically flew it into the water - that's not an accident? Does the term CFIT ring a bell? If that's the case, maybe we need to reexamine the recent Bond 225 accident - Gee - he just landed on the water!!
I explained to my friend that Bristow bonuses for management are tied to "no accidents" - Well - that's a hard one to figure out!! Just a normal landing though a little short of the boat! Everybody gets paid. Case closed.
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Old 5th Feb 2010, 11:38
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Bristow bonuses for management are tied to "no accidents"
Sounds very BRITISH.
Vesteys who owned a string of cattle stations right across northern oz once used to have a system where their managers were rewarded with a bonus on the money that they saved on their yearly food budget.

Ever tried working a gang of men (14) on a single bottle of tomato sauce for a week? Bread, beef, flour, tea, sugar and treacle was the usual fare. no refrigeration. had a mutiny once which was resolved with - you got it - another bottle of termata sauce.
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Old 5th Feb 2010, 19:21
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While everyone is still waiting on the cause of the Nigeria "incident," keep in mind that the difference between an "accident" and "incident" is very important to everyone concerned. By all appearences, the aircraft landed on the water and didn't "fly" into it. CFIT usually implies forward airspeed with subsequent damage to the aircraft. Looking at the evacuation video, it appears that, if the aircraft was written off, it would be the result of salt water contamination, not unrepairable structural damage.

For example, its common for single engine helicopters that suffer engine failures and make safe autorotations to the water to be concidered "incidents" and not "accidents" even though the boat that tries to tow the aircraft ends up sinking it.

Training schools also are given a bit of leeway on the definitions as well, otherwise everytime a student bent the skids or tore up the tail, schools would have horrible "accident" rates.

So, if BC wants to call it an "incident" then "incident" it is until someone can prove it was an "accident."
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Old 5th Feb 2010, 21:07
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Join Date: Apr 2003
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Well...

I once modified a Cessna 172 with a student's landing just a little short of the threshold that left it with semi-retractable landing gear. When we looked out the left side window there was this mainwheel, still attached to the airframe after the trunnion bolt had snapped. How odd...

The magic number at the time was $10 thousand, one of the boundaries between an accident and an incident because that was the diffo between minor and major damage, along with whether certain critical components are damaged. Luckily for me, that one was an incident.

I have seen stuff in Nigeria that left bits of aircraft all over the place that was nothing much, I guess. Heck, there was one where a BAC-1-11 crew plopped it back onto 19L after the stickshaker actuated airborne, when they went screaming off into the bush off the end of the runway, startling the hell out of Peter Seidel, just about to motor across there in his Beetle. The airline ground crew came and dragged their airplane away, policed up all the bits and that was about that. Of course about a month later they found a big crack in the main spar, or so I was told but still nothing much happened in an official sort of way. Marvelous place!
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Old 6th Feb 2010, 05:55
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CFIT usually implies forward airspeed with subsequent damage to the aircraft.
I would say CFIT implies they didn't plan on hitting the terrain/water. If it is planned then it is not CFIT. Low speed with armed floats and this could be CFIT just as it could be a planned ditching. We really know nothing.

This is no different than a large offshore oil company saying that the medevac we performed did not constitue a "lost time Injury" (LTI) because it was the end of his shift anyway.
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Old 6th Feb 2010, 20:01
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Join Date: Dec 2003
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Like the lead in says: The definition of is - is? CFIT - controlled flight "into" terrain? Did they fly "into" the terrain or land "upon" the terrain? If every "unplanned" landing could be concidered CFIT, then helicopters need a new term.
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Old 6th Feb 2010, 22:38
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ICAO definition of an accident

If it is any help, below is the ICAO definition of an accident (Annex 13).

Accident.
An occurrence associated with the operation of an aircraft which takes place between the time any person boards the aircraft with the intention of flight until such time as all such persons have disembarked, in which:

a) a person is fatally or seriously injured as a result of:
  • being in the aircraft, or
  • direct contact with any part of the aircraft, including parts which have become detached from the aircraft, or
  • direct exposure to jet blast,
except when the injuries are from natural causes, self inflicted or inflicted by other persons, or when the injuries are to stowaways hiding outside the areas normally available to the passengers and crew: or

b) the aircraft sustains damage or structural failure which:
  • adversely affects the structural strength, performance or flight characteristics of the aircraft, and
  • would normally require major repair or replacement of the affected component,
except for engine failure or damage. when the damage is limited to the engine, its cowlings or accessories: or for damage limited to propellers, wing tips, antennas, tires, brakes, fairings, small dents or puncture holes in the aircraft skin: or

c) the aircraft is missing or is completely inaccessible.

Note I.-- For statistical uniformity only, an injury resulting in death within thirty days of the date of the accident is classified as a fatal injury by ICAO.
Note 2.-- An aircraft is considered to be missing when the official search has been terminated and the wreckage has not been located.
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Old 9th Feb 2010, 20:45
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According to Webster's dictionary, "terrain" would be a land mass. So, technically this would either be CFIW or landing on water........
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