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Student jumps to their death

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Student jumps to their death

Old 1st Aug 2019, 03:46
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Student jumps to their death

https://www.news.com.au/travel/trave...366203aef21d66

Does anyone have a photo of a Cessna C168?
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Old 1st Aug 2019, 05:18
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No such thing.

Original Sun article here - shows a photo of a "re-creation" of the incident by police, and seems to show a C172/182-type interior.

https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/962731...ascar-student/

Poor reporting or a typo or faulty "auto-correct", I expect.
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Old 1st Aug 2019, 05:22
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This is very sad....without knowing the exact circumstances it reminded me of Donald Crowhurst and his boat Teignmouth Electron on the ill-fated solo round the world voyage. He is presumed to have committed suicide when it became clear he would - in his mind - let down his supporters and sponsors and being alone with no support structure ...cracked and ended it all. Hopefully lessons will be learned from this.
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Old 1st Aug 2019, 07:38
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Does anyone have a photo of a Cessna C168?
No but it's very similar to the Cessna 173.
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Old 1st Aug 2019, 08:04
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I can only imagine it's a 172/182, very odd.

I guess someone said it somewhere and the press has just run with it.
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Old 1st Aug 2019, 08:28
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Dubious

It's really, really difficult to force open the doors in flight against the prop wash - and with two passengers trying to stop you. I find this story completely implausible.
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Old 1st Aug 2019, 08:44
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Originally Posted by why panic View Post
It's really, really difficult to force open the doors in flight against the prop wash - and with two passengers trying to stop you. I find this story completely implausible.
Difficult but not impossible. For a bit of fun, masquerading as training, my instructor showed me how you can steer a 172 by opening left and right doors in flight. Just in case you happen to have lost aileron and rudder while still somehow keeping elevator control
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Old 1st Aug 2019, 08:54
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Looking at it another way - once someone has got themself halfway out of the door the passenger in the back seat and pilot trying to maintain control of the plane would seriously struggle to get them back in with the airflow holding the door against them being pulled back in. Likely that they were halfway out before the others could react.
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Old 1st Aug 2019, 09:51
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As someone who believes nothing I hear and only half of what I see, my first reaction is the unusual nature and details of this incident; the interior of the aircraft shows that it has no front right seat, yet it has a back seat. This seems to be a very unusual configuration for a four seat single; it's neither in a full pax / parachuting / cargo configuration.

Next, the only story about the event comes from the two survivors. There is absolutely no way that the deceased could have 'surprised' either of the other two occupants for the reasons already given; she would have had no previous experience in forcing open Cessna doors (especially during cruise with the high forces required as already mentioned), so there would have been quite some time while she (a) undid her seatbelt, (b) suddenly lunged forward towards the door, (c) grappled with the door handle and started to push on the door. Startled onlookers in the cabin would likely have had more than enough time for the startle effect to diminish enough in order for them to react to this odd behavior.

Perhaps the event did occur, but not as some would want the world to believe.
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Old 1st Aug 2019, 12:47
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Obviously I wasn't there so I don't know what happened but I was in a Cessna 206 which had not long taken off from Dallas Fort Worth doing about 80 knots when the front passenger accidentally opened his door and panicked - door did not swing shut despite prop wash - perhaps because of high wing? passenger was more worried about losing his hat than realising he might fall out - he had either failed to properly attach his seatbelt or somehow undid it during this - it took pilot holding onto his leg with his right hand me unbuckling myself in rear seat and reaching over him to hold him in and eventually get door shut.
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Old 1st Aug 2019, 13:20
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Cessna doors, if opened, will trail a little open, and not easily be closed in flight. For the right side doors whose window cannot be easily closed, there's nothing sound to grab on the inside of the door to pull that hard on. If the window opens,open it to grab the window frame, to close the door. A person could get out the door in flight, but they'd have to work on it, they're not going to just fall out.

There's no such thing as a C 168, it's a careless typo. The aircraft pictured is either a 172, or 182. The rest of the story is perhaps true, perhaps dramatized....
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Old 1st Aug 2019, 13:36
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the interior of the aircraft shows that it has no front right seat
It looks to me as though the right front seat as been leaned forward (to allow access to the rear seats).
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Old 1st Aug 2019, 13:47
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The rear upper door segments on the C208 and some C400 series (I only flew the C402 and C404) are very easy to open in flight. In fact one caravan I flew had a loose latch and would fairly regularly pop the left aft door open in a little turbulence.

Not saying that it was one of these types but it clearly wasn't a C168. 😆
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Old 1st Aug 2019, 13:56
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There was, or is, a Cessna 162. It is in the light sport airplane category.

No 168, though.
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Old 1st Aug 2019, 14:50
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The 162 was only a two seater so that rules it out of consideration.

It does seem that the story doesn't add up in many ways. The police need to follow a robust line of questioning with the two survivors I suggest.
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Old 1st Aug 2019, 15:41
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They are now saying anti malarial medication may have been a factor. Larium can have a pretty awful effect on some people, so I do wonder if that may be the case.
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Old 1st Aug 2019, 15:41
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Well, its on the BBC now, so you can't just blame the Sun: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-...herts-49192865
A Cambridge University student fell to her death in Madagascar after opening the door of a small plane in mid-air, police have said.

Alana Cutland, 19, from Milton Keynes in Buckinghamshire, died in July, the Foreign Office confirmed.

Police on the African island said it was not yet clear why she opened the door of the light aircraft.

One theory being investigated is that she may have suffered a severe reaction to anti-malaria drugs.
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Old 1st Aug 2019, 15:58
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Originally Posted by why panic View Post
It's really, really difficult to force open the doors in flight against the prop wash - and with two passengers trying to stop you. .....
Not really; if you are determined to get out you only need a gap of, I dunno, 30cm/10 inches to slide through. What's difficult is to open the door the full 90 degrees. I confess that I've never tried to open a C172 door in flight, but I have done it in an Auster to drop bags of mail to troops on exercise.

And it was the pilot and 1 passenger trying to hold her back, not 2 passengers. Either the girl or the other passenger would have been in the front RH seat for C of G management, I would have thought; I have never flown a C172 or similar with 2 in the back and just me in the front and I wouldn't want to try. Either way, the other passenger would not have found it easy to grab and hold her, let alone pull her back, and nor would the pilot while trying to fly the aircraft.
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Old 1st Aug 2019, 16:24
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The planform of a small Cessna (in fact most small GA planes) is basically shaped like an airfoil. It's just a function of fitting "fat" cabin and engine space into the most streamlined shape possible.

It will produce Bernoulli/Venturi suction to pop open unlatched doors and windows - up to the point that the suction pull balances with the slipstream/propwash "push" - a few inches or cms.
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Old 1st Aug 2019, 17:18
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I've had the front door pop open in a Bonanza, not a Cessna. It trails about 3 or 4 inches open and is very difficult to open further or close. In my case it happened just after takeoff at about 100kts. We had to come back around and land to get it shut.
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