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Mid Air in the US

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Mid Air in the US

Old 13th May 2021, 20:44
  #41 (permalink)  
 
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From the NTSB:

NTSB News Release

National Transportation Safety Board Office of Safety Recommendations and CommunicationsInvestigative Update: Wednesday's Mid-Air Collision Near Denver
5/13/2021 ​WASHINGTON (May 13, 2021) — National Transportation Safety Board investigators continue Thursday to gather information about Wednesday’s mid-air collision involving a Cirrus SR-22 airplane and a Swearingen Metroliner airplane near Centennial Airport, Denver.

No one was injured when the Swearingen Metroliner, operated by Key Lime Air, and a Cirrus SR-22 rented, from Independence Aviation, collided as the planes were landing at Centennial Airport.

The NTSB Investigator-in-Charge for this accident has interviewed both pilots, and an NTSB air traffic control specialist has listened to recordings from air traffic control. Interviews of the controllers working with the Cirrus and Metroliner pilots are planned.

An NTSB investigator examined the wrecked Cirrus Wednesday and will examine the Metroliner Thursday. The insurer of the Cirrus arranged for removal and transport of the plane to Centennial Airport and the Metroliner is at a Key Lime Air facility at Centennial Airport.

Both aircraft were operating under Part 91 general aviation rules. The Cirrus was on a local flight from Centennial and the Metroliner was repositioning from Salida, Colorado.

The NTSB’s investigation of the mid-air collision will, in general terms, look at the people involved in the accident, the airplanes involved in the accident and the environment in which the accident happened. There are currently four NTSB investigators working on this accident investigation.

“We are working to understand how and why these planes collided,” said John Brannen, a Senior Air Safety Investigator from the NTSB’s Central Region office and the Investigator-in-Charge for the accident investigation. “It is so fortunate that no one was injured in this collision.”

A preliminary report will publish in the next 14 days and the investigation is expected to take between 12 and 18 months to complete.
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Old 14th May 2021, 02:11
  #42 (permalink)  
epc
 
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Radar track shows Cirrus was turning right to final, descending, and at high speed. It's a low wing aircraft also. Wonder if the wing obscured the Cirrus pilot's vision of the Metroliner.
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Old 14th May 2021, 06:12
  #43 (permalink)  
 
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Does anyone know another midair were both crews made it down alive? They can be so lucky. Wonder what the speed of the SR22 was, that they made it through the Metroliner on an almost right angle and that on final.
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Old 14th May 2021, 06:38
  #44 (permalink)  
 
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The radar tracks are quite informative. I don't know what the procedures are at centennial, but flying downwind at 140 knots 500 feet above the pattern altitude and then descending in lockstep with the metroliner following the profile to 35L makes it look like the Cirrus was being flown like a mini airliner. The recording capability of the avionics will most probably allow a complete reconstruction of what the the Cirrus was doing. But one thing is clear the pilot did not have a good mental map of the traffic situation, which is strange as the Cirrus normally has a pretty good TCAS display. I know Denver is high with the effect on true airspeed, but turning final at 160 knots (if I am interpreting the Blancolirio analysis on YouTube right) looks more than a little sporty.
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Old 14th May 2021, 06:55
  #45 (permalink)  
 
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EDLB

"Does anyone know another midair were both crews made it down alive?"

There have been many over the years, in fact the first recorded mid-air collision (in 1910) was non-fatal.

The NTSB alone has recorded over 200 non-fatal mid-airs in the last 40 years.

Last edited by DaveReidUK; 14th May 2021 at 07:59.
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Old 14th May 2021, 07:03
  #46 (permalink)  
 
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lederhosen

God help us if flying a contra-circuit base leg on autopilot is a thing these days!
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Old 14th May 2021, 07:12
  #47 (permalink)  
 
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Too soon to say if it has bearing on this accident or not, but I've casually observed that the average pilot of some of these high performance, high tech GA planes is in over his/her head. Some of the avionics packages have enough bells and whistles to make an A350 pilot feel inadequate, and in the wrong hands, can be more of a distraction than anything else.
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Old 14th May 2021, 07:14
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I know a few pilots working on their instrument and commercial ratings that use autopilots frequently. Whoever thought it was a good idea to put an autopilot in a training aircraft has lost the plot.
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Old 14th May 2021, 07:43
  #49 (permalink)  
 
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The Cirrus I fly for fun (Airbus captain) can do 210 knots at FL250 and would not usually be considered a training aircraft. In my experience it is a stupendous personal transportation device. But it does have some quirks, for example the power management takes a bit of getting used to. It is not single lever like a jet, but has a mixture control which needs to be used carefully to avoid cooking the engine. The accident aircraft was according to reports a rental and it will be interesting to know the experience of the pilot. The great thing about this event is that everyone survived unscathed and can tell their story. Hopefully we can all learn something new. But I would be surprised if there were not some man machine interface learning points, similar to some of the issues with Tesla cars currently, (in particular understanding the limits of automation / modern technology).
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Old 14th May 2021, 07:46
  #50 (permalink)  
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For those of you here who are (obviously ) no pilots or controllers and jumping to conclusions , always good to recalls the facts and what the book says :
a) different frequencies for parallel runways is the rule and the norm in busy airports, can be combined when traffic decreases ( e.g night) .
b) approaches for runways separated by less that 2500ft ( as it the case here ) should be staggered and not side by side . The USA has filed a difference on that one . They are the only ones as far as I know. (waiting to be corrected)
c) Class D airspace does not include ATC providing separation between VFRs or IFR/VFR.
d) passing traffic information on other traffic is usual and was done here.

Then on using aircraft equipped with the GARMIN1000 screen in VFR ( as was the case here) , I flew with students in a few of those including the SR22s, far too much time watching the screens and not outside , and with ADS-B now, replying " in sight" is sometimes seeing it in on the screen and not visually acquired out of the window. .I am not saying this is what happened here, just an observation , and indeed the speed they had on base was not helping. ..
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Old 14th May 2021, 08:09
  #51 (permalink)  
 
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lederhosen

Centennial is ~6,000’ ASL and OAT was ~15C, which gives a density altitude in the circuit of >10,500’. TAS is nearly 20% higher than IAS, then add in a little tailwind (downwind leg) and you’re down to somewhere in the region of 115kts indicated, which for a SR22 is only around Vref+30. From the spacing of the dots on the radar replay, the SR22 and the Metro appear to have being doing similar speeds, which would make sense as the Metro AFAIK has a Vref around 115kts.

It might be a factor but it doesn’t look outrageous?
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Old 14th May 2021, 09:14
  #52 (permalink)  
 
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The audio in the Youtube indicates that the Metro was not given Traffic on the SR22, only on the Cessna.
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Old 14th May 2021, 09:23
  #53 (permalink)  
 
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Fullwings I take it you mean the speed downwind would be 115 indicated? The radar track on Blancolirio's YouTube channel shows the Cirrus doing 160 on base and the Metroliner doing 110 on final. The wind on the ground was light and variable, which does not preclude something much higher at a thousand feet, but makes it less likely. I don't know how much Cirrus experience you have, but this would not be the way I would want to fly a visual circuit in one, and that is before they overshot the final turn. By the way Capn Bloggs the bit you attributed to me about passing traffic information on was actually by ATC Watcher.
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Old 14th May 2021, 09:45
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OK, I didnít see that. 160 on base sounds somewhat excessive, maybe contributory to overshooting the extended centreline of 17R...
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Old 14th May 2021, 10:06
  #55 (permalink)  
 
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You tend to leave the power in during descent. But obviously you need to slow down at some point so you can configure. This looks like the power was left in too long and the aircraft left the pilot hanging someway behind. The new machines have higher flap limiting speeds so maybe you can do things differently, but the elephant in the room remains overshooting the final turn.
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Old 14th May 2021, 10:12
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Thereís also the possibility of misidentifying the runway - there are four close, parallel taxiways and runways. If the SR22 pilot was a bit behind the curve (what we would term a rushed approach), the attraction of the most obvious runway in terms of nearness and prominence of markings could be a factor too...
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Old 14th May 2021, 10:28
  #57 (permalink)  
 
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Curious as to why the Traffic Awareness system in the Cirrus wasnít chirping?
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Old 14th May 2021, 11:02
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The Metro pilot sounded really relaxed in the ATC tapes. I would have liked to see the look on his face when he saw the damage to his plane.
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Old 14th May 2021, 11:03
  #59 (permalink)  
 
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A typical class D exchange with IFR inbound goes something like this:

ATC: "traffic information is [a nuisance something being presented in a bored tone of voice like a thousand times previously requiring nothing further than acknowledgement]"
Pilot: "[disinterested because ATC won't let anything happen to us, we're IFR, right!] got it on TCAS [with tacit assurance to ATC that they're not going to hit it]"

Risky-shift and everyone is happy until it doesn't work.
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Old 14th May 2021, 12:01
  #60 (permalink)  
 
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Risky-shift and everyone is happy until it doesn't work.
Absolutely. And who thought parallel runways with separate frequencies was a good idea? Not a pilot, that's for sure!
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