B-17 Down at Bradley Int'l Airport

Discussion in 'Aviation Mishaps' started by TFulwider, Oct 2, 2019.

  1. Chip Sylverne

    Chip Sylverne En-Route

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    Fear is the poison of our lives.
    I'll probably be pilloried for this, but I don't see anything wrong with a properly designed and executed safety survey. Insurance companies do them all the time. If there are unsafe practices, they should be called out. We have all seen instances of organizations that have done things things successfully over time, creating a culture that accepts marginal practice.
    That's not to say a ride in a warbird need necessarily meet air transport standards, but a disinterested parties' critical eye isn't always a bad thing.
     
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  2. luvflyin

    luvflyin Final Approach

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    Thing about flying accidents is we get some detailed reports on what happened on almost all of them, unlike auto accidents. A lot of them, most of them actually, can’t happen to me. Yeah, yeah, pretty bold statement. But a whole lot of them are caused by things I simply don’t do. Those are the ones that are caused by pilot error. No, I’m not say I’m perfect and don’t make errors. But a huge amount of the errors are ones made before the airplane takes off. Many of those errors are made before the engine is even started. A lot of those errors are made when the decision is made to fly before even getting to the airport. So yeah, I discount the didn’t put enough gas in the tanks ones before departing out of the equation. Didn’t preflight the plane. Didn’t use checklists. Didn’t heed the weather. Those types of pilot errors. Taking that into account, the statistics are not stacked against me.
     
  3. Rein Hart

    Rein Hart Pre-Flight

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    I wonder if a grass landing was possible but they pushed for the runway instead to avoid the attention of not making it to the airport.
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2019
  4. AKBill

    AKBill En-Route

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    Maybe. From what I have read they hit the approach lights 1000 feet from threshold. Sad day is an understatement.
     
  5. Kenny Phillips

    Kenny Phillips En-Route

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    Yes, the NTSB said something to that effect. All was lost at that point. I'm rather confused on how that could have happened with three still turning, but I'll wait for the report.
     
  6. wsuffa

    wsuffa Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I agree with you as long as it's done scientifically: remember that the NTSB is a government agency and is subject to some political pressure. It's not a good sign that the lead investigator made the comments that were reported by USA Today. And in spite of the NTSB, we have a sitting Senator call for more regulation.

    Unfortunately, Washington lacks the ability to effectively use science these days, with the focus being on populism, getting votes, being re-elected, and party control.

    So yes, I am in favor of what you speak. I'm concerned that it won't happen that way.

    Your view may vary.
     
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  7. Ryanb

    Ryanb Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    “The most dangerous part about flying is the drive to the airport”...
     
  8. Ryanb

    Ryanb Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    I’ve always heard that pilots make good drivers.
     
  9. arnoha

    arnoha Cleared for Takeoff

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    This is quite true for commercial flights, but not true for the flying we do. As has been stated before, on mile-by-mile basis or an hour-by-hour basis, the risk is statistically between a car and a motorcycle. Depending on exactly how you measure it. For some, this activity is not inside their risk tolerance but driving is. For us, it's clear that both are inside our risk tolerance. For me, motorcycling used to be in my risk tolerance, but I've shifted away from it being inside for a number of reasons. We all make our own decisions. I hold no ill will to someone who says that GA flying isn't OK for them.

    On the other hand, I would certainly have issue with someone deciding that it was outside my risk tolerance for me. Very different thing.

    There have been reports, so far unsubstantiated, that both engines on the right side weren't make power. Not saying that's the case, but it would help explain why altitude could not be gained. There has also been conjecture that it was misfueled with JetA, although, honestly, I find that hard to believe. (Wouldn't the spade nozzle keep it out? Maybe the older B-17 didn't have the restricted intake?)
     
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  10. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I declared a Mayday to RHV Tower a few years ago for what turned out to be total power loss, and a landing-gear emergency to approach and tower at SJC many years ago, and never heard boo from the FAA about either one. (Whether they contacted the club that I rented from, I don't know.)
     
  11. wsuffa

    wsuffa Touchdown! Greaser!

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  12. 3393RP

    3393RP En-Route

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    This is just a throwaway comment of no value. Earlier today I was thinking about the larger picture a little, and I came to the conclusion one of the early collateral effects of the tragedy will probably be the withdrawal of the foundation's F-4 Phantom from their flight line.

    We can all easily imagine why.

    I will always remember my flights in their bombers as one of my best flying experiences.
     
  13. Jay Honeck

    Jay Honeck Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Quite amazing that no video of this crash has surfaced as yet.

    It was probably witnessed by hundreds, and filmed by dozens.

    Sent from my SM-T380 using Tapatalk
     
  14. woodchucker

    woodchucker Cleared for Takeoff

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    I have zero knowledge on this, but wouldn’t the wrong fuel effect all engines equally?
     
  15. weilke

    weilke Touchdown! Greaser!

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    If all the tanks were filled from the same load yes. Given the amount of fuel the B17 takes relative to what other 100LL burners and the tank-size of your standard fuel bowsers, that's not a given. But I believe the NTSB already stated that the tank contained 100LL.
     
  16. PaulS

    PaulS Final Approach

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    I heard a TV report that the ntsb does have at least one surveillance video of the incident.
     
  17. Matthew Rogers

    Matthew Rogers Line Up and Wait

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    I did the same thing three times in a row one morning, ice in the pitot tube. But it was at an uncontrolled airport so nobody cared. Finally got all the water out and had airspeed indications.

    I had one take off “issue” when a baggage door came open on takeoff. Didn’t declare, just asked for a return to the airport like the B-17 and the tower cleared me for an immediate 270 to the crossing runway. No questions, just park and figure it out and let us know when you are ready to take off again. Didn’t think that it required an emergency.
     
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  18. Jay Honeck

    Jay Honeck Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I would think that there would be many people on the ground taking video of a low flying B-17 with one engine smoking.

    Sent from my SM-T380 using Tapatalk
     
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  19. arnoha

    arnoha Cleared for Takeoff

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    I don't know the B-17 fuel system exactly, but multiengine often feed only from the wing they're attached to unless crossfeed is set up. Crossfeed is, while not unusual, also not the normal configuration and wouldn't have been used on takeoff. It's also not uncommon for very large aircraft like the B-17 that use top fill (vs. single-point pressure fill like large jets) to have a truck on either side when available to speed things up. I've seen 909 do exactly that. So, it's conceivable that one wing got 100LL and one got JetA.

    However, the NTSB seems to be indicating that is not the case, so we can take that off the table.
     
  20. luvflyin

    luvflyin Final Approach

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    A CFI talked to me once about that. But it was the drive home after the flight, not the drive to before the flight. Makes sense, some flights can be fatiguing. He sure fatigued me that day. Actually, I fatigued me
     
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  21. AKBill

    AKBill En-Route

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    Conceivable but highly unlikely. The ground crew and pilots I am sure watch such operations closely.
     
  22. overdrive148

    overdrive148 En-Route

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    Seconded. For an operation like that I highly doubt the FBO or supervising crew would make that mistake. All of those vintage planes burn a ton of fuel, I bet they had the 100LL truck parked close by and ready for quick turns or at the very least back and forth to the fuel farm to top off again.
     
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  23. hindsight2020

    hindsight2020 En-Route

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    How much revenue are the pax rides? Is it that necessary to the solvency of the operation? I'm sure as national relics, there's plenty of boomer money that could privately endow the upkeep of the things, plus whatever they can collect from airshow/statics. That also might alleviate the insurance angle as a compromise. Don't shoot the messenger, just throwing ideas for a solution that doesn't require joyrides.
     
  24. arnoha

    arnoha Cleared for Takeoff

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    Agree, and the NTSB seems to agree that this was not the cause. I still don't see confirmation as to whether one engine or two were having power issues, as well.
     
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  25. Kenny Phillips

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    Nope. There are plenty of organizations screaming for such money, and they aren't getting it.
     
  26. Fearless Tower

    Fearless Tower Touchdown! Greaser!

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    From everything I’ve heard, Mac personally fueled the airplane every time (never the line guys). For it to even have been Jet-A contamination would have meant the truck itself was contaminated. While possible, that means other aircraft would have had the same contamination.
     
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  27. overdrive148

    overdrive148 En-Route

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    Makes sense. The museum on the field I worked at had their guys sit on the wing and we handed the hose up to them. Thry even read the gallon count to each other.

    Contaminating a 100LL truck with Jet-A would be really hard. Just like the nozzles going out to the aircraft, the single point ports used to fill the trucks are entirely different too.
     
  28. geezer

    geezer Pre-takeoff checklist

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    At FDK, Frederick MD, I was too late in the line to get a ride on Aluminum Overcast. I did spend a bit of time watching it depart and return, setting down so gently that without the puff of smoke from the tires, I could not tell when it contacted pavement. The pilot was a WW 2 veteran of bombing Germany, and was in his 80's, 88 if I remember correctly. He had announced his retirement from flying the B 17, as he felt that his skills were slipping, and a younger crew would be better. I do not know if those landings were by him, or a younger man he was training, but in either case, his talent was amazing.

    This accident will not reduce the likelihood of my flying on a B 17 or B 24 in the future.

    Jumping sideways a bit, Thursday noon, I met a WW 2 veteran who drove a Duck to the beach at Normandy, D day, about 18 years old then. 95 years old, walks slowly without a cane or walker. Does need some help with shirt tails after a trip to the rest room. Amazing how healthy some of those guys still are. You never know who you will share a restroom with at the American Legion!
     
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  29. Fearless Tower

    Fearless Tower Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Apparently it has happened before, but it involved a valve leaking between tanks at the fuel farm.
     
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  30. RyanShort1

    RyanShort1 En-Route

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    Guys, take the time to read post by OD / NG here if at all possible: http://warbirdinformationexchange.org/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=70495&p=622489#p622489

    Quoting a snippet of a lot more good information that followed...

    and think about leaving a comment on this regulatory opinion site: https://www.regulations.gov/comment?D=FAA-2001-11089-0096
     
  31. weilke

    weilke Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I believe the Wall Street Journal had an op-ed along the lines of: 'last year 19 people died in the Grand Canyon. That's not a reason to close all the national parks.'
     
  32. flyingcheesehead

    flyingcheesehead Touchdown! Greaser!

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  33. Warmi

    Warmi Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I thin he should be worrying about lawyers not the FAA...
     
  34. kyleb

    kyleb En-Route PoA Supporter

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    If Collings is smart they have good insurance and have their assets protected. But the big picture is that more rules saying "You can't" is a bad way to run a country.
     
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  35. Warmi

    Warmi Pre-takeoff checklist

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    How do they know if their assets are well protected ? With zero fatalities until now, they really cant - they will learn soon enough though ...
     
  36. kyleb

    kyleb En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Collings is very well financed. (Anyone who can operate a F-4 Phantom has an incredible amount of money.) So I imagine they have good lawyers and advisers.
     
  37. jsstevens

    jsstevens Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    FTFY. I'm sure they have a lot of money passing through. But have a lot of money sitting around? Facts not in evidence.
     
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  38. EppyGA

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  39. arnoha

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  40. scottfromboston

    scottfromboston Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Yup. Would be interesting to see some of the more recent history, as they supposedly sold (leased?) some of the collection to build the tank museum.

    It's an amazing place, and I'm sure cost quite a bit.