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Helicopter missing in the Mourne Mountains, & tributes to AJ

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Helicopter missing in the Mourne Mountains, & tributes to AJ

Old 25th Oct 2010, 23:23
  #41 (permalink)  
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There is surely rarely any situation in which flying workload makes a second pilot highly desirable
Utter tosh! Breathtaking ignorance
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Old 26th Oct 2010, 08:43
  #42 (permalink)  
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Well Wizzard, perhaps you'd like to expand and explain why you think it is not rare to need a second pilot for GA ops in a light twin?
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Old 26th Oct 2010, 10:12
  #43 (permalink)  
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Please let's move along - SPIFR is totally and utterly acceptable in this day and age. The technology caters for this in the extreme. PROVIDED the pilot is adequately qualified to fly SPIFR - should the weather dictate, OR is competent enough if flying VFR only to steer well clear of IMC.
Don't look to the operation or a/c for fault...look to the pilot. After all, statistically nearly 70% of all accidents are pilot error.
The CAA dictate a 2 pilot ethos and this is based on medical grounds/risk, not workload.
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Old 26th Oct 2010, 10:50
  #44 (permalink)  
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Yes but...........

....... it's all very well pontificating but the reality is that whilst SPIFR may be the zenith of a professional helicopter pilot's qualifications we get precious little practice, little training and dream about a good set of sim sessions to set us up properly. When cost isn't an issue it makes sense to go two-up. Even if all the co pilot does is keep the (up to 12) pax in order during embarkation and more particularly during disembarkation when they have a horrible habit of baling out whilly nilly during the 2 minute run-down despite being told not to. (its my helicopter and I'll do as I want to syndrome).

Two crew is the way ahead as far as I am concerned unless and until we all get SPIFR recurrent training every 6 months in a suitable sim that goes beyond a quick wizz around the ILS pattern.

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Old 26th Oct 2010, 11:26
  #45 (permalink)  

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A few thoughts provoked by comments already posted by others on this accident:

Was this aircraft carrying out an ILS or any other type of IFR letdown? Does instrument flying training/recency therefore have something to do with this accident? I must have missed an initial report...

I think basic mission planning / contingency planning is perhaps one thing the AAIB might be looking at closely, as well as other things, in this case.

I first flew SPIFR in 1979 and have done so for much of my career since, although I have quite a lot of multi-crew IFR time too. More recently I flew a 109 SPIFR for some years before the owner decided he might like someone else to have a chance of landing it if I popped my clogs in flight.

Medical grounds only was the rationale behind the decision; perhaps he thought I looked a bit peaky...

However, the CAA do not mandate two pilot ops for our type of operations.
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Old 26th Oct 2010, 12:53
  #46 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: UK
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i think it a bit early for you guys to call this a CFIT accident, the pilot had a lot of experience operating in this area, have you seen the service bulletin caa has put out regarding 109's?
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Old 26th Oct 2010, 13:38
  #47 (permalink)  
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Emergency AD - No 2010 - 0222 - E: 22nd October 2010. May be a Red Herring.......

ATA 65 Tail Rotor Drive Tail Rotor Special Hub Plug - Inspection
Manufacturer(s): Agusta S.p.A
Applicability: A109A and A109AII helicopters, all serial numbers if equipped with tail
rotor special hub plug part number (P/N) 109-0133-18-103.
Reason: A mistaken value of the tightening torque of the tail rotor special hub plug
P/N 109-0133-18-103 has been discovered in the Maintenance Manual of
A109A and A109AII helicopters.
The investigation carried out by Agusta has revealed that the wrong value
of the tightening torque was introduced with the revision 9 of the A109A
and A109AII Helicopter Maintenance Manual dated 15 June 2009.
This condition, if not corrected, could ultimately lead to tail rotor
Effective Date: 25 October 2010
Required action(s)
and Compliance
Required as indicated, unless accomplished previously:
Within the next 5 flight hours after the effective date of this AD but no later
than 30 November 2010, whichever occurs first, verify the tightening
torque of the special tail rotor hub plug P/N 109-0133-18-103, and do the
applicable corrective actions, in accordance with the instructions of Agusta
Alert Bollettino Tecnico 109-132.

I understand this AD does not refer to N2NR. It is a Red Herring.

Last edited by Swiss Cheese; 2nd Nov 2010 at 19:02. Reason: update after more research
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Old 26th Oct 2010, 14:20
  #48 (permalink)  
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Emergency AD - No 2010 - 0222 - E: 22nd October 2010. May be a Red Herring......
So the Emergency AD that was published the day before the accident, might have had something to do with it, huh?

Who needs air crash investigations when you have PPRuNe, heh?
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Old 26th Oct 2010, 20:07
  #49 (permalink)  
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The heli was booked in to land at Caernarfon Airport at 1700 L and there was no sign of it. Got a departure notice that they left EGAB at 1602 L therefore they must have crashed soon after. Horrible to think I was one of the last people to speak with the pilot.
EGAB to EGCK does not take the flight close to the Mourne Mountains. As far as I can tell the accident site would be about 10+ miles off the direct track between the two aerodromes.

From the initial uncertainty about the POB, I wonder if a flight plan was flied? (It would have to be for the direct route which crosses the FIR boundary).

Why would such a flight avoid taking the direct routing option and use a route that took it over high ground and would cause an extended over-water flight compared to the direct route?
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Old 26th Oct 2010, 21:27
  #50 (permalink)  
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The mods will probably kill this comment...but we'll see ?

Yes, it was a post of low intellect and totally unsuited to a thread about a fatal accident. The number of posts on this thread showing an astounding lack of sensitivity along with wild, unfounded speculation has saddened me.

Senior Pilot
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Old 26th Oct 2010, 21:45
  #51 (permalink)  
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Any info on the pilots name? A Pm would be fine. A friend of a friend who knows someone who flies for the company and is not able to get in touch. Many thanks.
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Old 26th Oct 2010, 22:34
  #52 (permalink)  
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the pilot was my uncle and they havent named him yet as some of the family have not been notified
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Old 26th Oct 2010, 22:42
  #53 (permalink)  

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Jackal ... sincere condolences to you and your family.

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Old 26th Oct 2010, 22:51
  #54 (permalink)  
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Condolences to your family, I flew with your uncle a number of times and he will be missed.
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Old 26th Oct 2010, 22:52
  #55 (permalink)  
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receiving private pm's

it seems youre blocking getting messages glass half empty
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Old 26th Oct 2010, 22:53
  #56 (permalink)  
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Jackal - let me join Whirls in her sentiments, condolences to you and your family

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Old 26th Oct 2010, 23:30
  #57 (permalink)  
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I am truly disappointed by the scurrilous, disingenuous speculation cropping up on here.

How about we make a base assumption that the pilot was professional in his planning and execution of this sortie and that he was fully competent and qualified to conduct it? Perhaps we can also make the leap of faith that he also flew in accordance with the regulations in place.

How about we also assume that his name has not yet been released for good reason? - NoK desire, positive identification issues or some other reason unknown to us general public.

I know this is a rumour network but some of the comments are close to offensive. Three men have died and there are a whole lot of distraught people trying to come to terms with their loss. This is a tragedy which will takes years for loved ones to come to terms with. Perhaps we can hold in mind the effect our comments might have when these poor people inevitably read this thread.

May I humbly suggest that if anyone wants to open a debate about single pilot IFR, poor weather flying in the mountains, aircrew not being qualified to fly a particular sortie, they start another thread.

I suspect some clever sod will respond to this post in some 'put-down, right to know' way but frankly, I don't give a t+ss what your opinion is. Let us be responsible with our speculation and have a mind for those people most affected by this accident.

Rant stowed and secure.

Jackal. I believe I knew your Uncle and I posted this before I saw your comments. It stands in any event and I wish to add to the two recent expressions of sympathy. I considered him a friend and an excellent pilot - dodgy in his taste of TV programmes over a three day Bessbrook but someone I shared some challenging and interesting flying experiences with. Both my wife and I knew him for over 25 years and I know the world will be sadder and quieter without him. My thoughts are with you and your family at this terrible time.

Last edited by appleavi8or; 26th Oct 2010 at 23:37. Reason: updated information
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Old 26th Oct 2010, 23:30
  #58 (permalink)  
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thankyou to you both, i never thught he'd go like this, it was a shock he was a good pilot
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Old 26th Oct 2010, 23:45
  #59 (permalink)  
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So very sorry for the families and friends of those lost.
Sincere condolences from Myself and My Family.
We lost our Son/Brother - also a Helicopter Pilot - in a crash September '09.
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Old 27th Oct 2010, 00:04
  #60 (permalink)  
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Regarding FIRs, a flight plan would be required for this route since it started in the Scottish FIR EGPX and ended in the London FIR EGTT.
I recomed that you take some time to consult the PPL confuser!!

A flight plan is required for a flight that crosses an international FIR boundary. The London / Scottish boundary is not an international one.

The Scottish / Shannon one is and so is the Shannon / London one.

My question assumes that the flight was operated perfectly but for some reason chose to remain within the UK FIRS which causes and extended routing, a need to fly over high ground and a need to use a turn point in the middle of the Irish sea on an extended over-water leg.

Why not simply fly VFR (or IFR) on the direct route over low level terrain and a shorter sea crossing?
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