Commanche down in San Antonio, Dec 1, 2019

Discussion in 'Aviation Mishaps' started by RyanShort1, Dec 1, 2019.

  1. RyanShort1

    RyanShort1 En-Route

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    Last edited: Dec 1, 2019
  2. overdrive148

    overdrive148 En-Route

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    4 miles away from my apartment, didn't hear or see a thing. RIP :(
     
  3. Warmi

    Warmi Pre-takeoff checklist

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    There is technology readily available and reasonably affordable that could have made this engine out potentially a non-event ...
     
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  4. hindsight2020

    hindsight2020 En-Route

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    reasonably affordable? Now this I gotta hear. :D
     
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  5. Warmi

    Warmi Pre-takeoff checklist

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    You can get it for an experimental at around 10 k or so ... that’s pretty reasonable imho ...
     
  6. schmookeeg

    schmookeeg Cleared for Takeoff

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    ...and 100K+ for the experimental aircraft comparable to a Piper Comanche
     
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  7. Van Johnston

    Van Johnston Cleared for Takeoff

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    No fire per SAFD.

    4th leg of the day per FlightAware.
     
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  8. Warmi

    Warmi Pre-takeoff checklist

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    That’s not the point ... the point here is that great majority of GA pilots are stuck with 60-40 years old designs that have no easy path for an upgrade ( due to procedural, bureaucratic or sometimes technical reasons ) while we do have reasonably affordable technology that can help to greatly minimize risks of these types of mishaps.

    It is akin to majority of US population still driving around in 1960 and 1970s cars without air bags and similar modern safety technologies ...
    GA market in the US is like an automotive market in Cuba ... stuck in the past - it is just a sad state of affairs.
     
  9. Rgbeard

    Rgbeard Cleared for Takeoff

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    Warmi - what's your $10k solution? I'm listening.
     
  10. hindsight2020

    hindsight2020 En-Route

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    He cited a 10K BRS, but when confronted with the fact most of us are aware of it, but fly clapped out Comanches and Arrows that don't qualify for these modifications precisely because they cost 40K to acquire and not 200K for an RV-10, said poster shifted the goal post.

    No, you're missing the point. We're fully aware of BRS technology and the free for all EABers have at their legal disposal. You're conveniently missing the 180K expenditure to replace the 4 seat capability of a 250hp clapped out orphan comanche that goes for a quarter of that price, in order to incorporate said "cheap" technology into an airplane that can legally be modified in such way.
     
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  11. Rgbeard

    Rgbeard Cleared for Takeoff

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    so did Warmi edit his posts? I don't see mention of it.
     
  12. Warmi

    Warmi Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I did not shift any goal posts ... I just wrote that there is relatively cheap technology available to prevent his sort of pointless tragedies ... the fact that we are stuck with ancient planes that can’t take advantage of any of that doesn’t change that fact... does it ?
     
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  13. RyanShort1

    RyanShort1 En-Route

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    It wouldn't prevent 100% of them, but I agree, this should become like the shoulder harness deal. If someone can come up with a reasonably good installation, it should be legal to get an STC with minimal fuss.
     
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  14. Warmi

    Warmi Pre-takeoff checklist

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    The fact that you need an STC ( or in general , need to ask for permission from a federal agency ) for just about anything, is the very reason you can’t get BRS and you are stuck with 50 year old planes ...but we already know that don’t we ?
     
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  15. GRG55

    GRG55 Final Approach

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    Unfortunately most of the airplanes currently flying are not experimentals. And if you want to start a conversation about safety, you should consider the statistical difference in accident rates between experimentals and certificated airplanes.

    A BRS system for a Cessna 172 is currently $15,500 plus installation; for a 182 its $17,500 plus installation.
     
  16. GRG55

    GRG55 Final Approach

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    How did you come to that conclusion? The reason most of us are stuck with 50 year old planes is because most of us cannot afford $800,000 for a new Cirrus, or even $250,000 for a used one.
     
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  17. Warmi

    Warmi Pre-takeoff checklist

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    The difference is derivative of the fact that most experimentals are built by amateurs without necessary technical background rather than the fact that these are not certificated planes.
     
  18. Swampfox201

    Swampfox201 Line Up and Wait

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    Article states: "Firefighters searched a 20-block radius to make sure the engine didn’t fall into a structure while the plane was descending."

    I'm confused. Was the engine not at the crash site? This has to be a case of bad reporting?
     
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  19. GRG55

    GRG55 Final Approach

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    And your point is? If you think experimental - amateur built (E-AB) airplanes should not be built by amateurs, then exactly who should build them?

    Commercial air travel is safer than certificated GA airplanes which are safer than experimentals.
    The reason is directly linked to the level of regulation that is applied to each of those three segments of aviation. And that regulation comes with a price tag.
     
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  20. Tarheelpilot

    Tarheelpilot En-Route

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    A case study in what happens to markets with significant regulatory oversight.
     
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  21. PiperW

    PiperW Pre-Flight

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    No fire or foam at crash site.
    Stalled 150 yds short of runway.



    ....maybe a simple miscalculation of fuel required to get from Sugarland to Boerne. About an hr flight n a PA24 with no winds.
    Head winds were double digit last in his flight direction.

    clear skies when I went to bed and clear now, he had to be closer to 1T8 than KSAT per flight plan.

    Need to listen to the communications between KSAT and pilot but my guess is he miscalculated his guide distance and could see international KSAT to his left while to his closer right was Bulverde just needing 5 clicks to light up.

    Sad to all involved

    Their trials and tribulations are official over.
     
  22. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man En-Route

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    Maybe the pilot reported he "lost the engine" and they took it literally lol.
     
  23. Rein Hart

    Rein Hart Pre-Flight

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    Sounds like he lost the fuel...
     
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  24. Van Johnston

    Van Johnston Cleared for Takeoff

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    That is pretty close to what the SA Fire Chief said to reporters in his statement that was broadcast. What I heard was "We searched a 20-block radius to make the engine or other part of the airplane wasn't lost."

    I agree, I would think it would be obvious if they lost the engine. I also hope he meant a 4 x 5 block area, not a 20 block radius.
     
  25. Doc Holliday

    Doc Holliday Line Up and Wait

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    So older certified airplanes need BRS installed because the pilot may not correctly figure the amount of fuel needed to fly a segment?
     
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  26. EdFred

    EdFred Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    What's a "Commanche" ?

    I also didn't know that looking into the fuel tanks was a $10k option. That said, running out of fuel I have 0 sympathy.
     
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  27. PiperW

    PiperW Pre-Flight

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    Go to flight aware and check out his flight. Really weird, doesn’t look like fuel exhaustion to me. Looks like engine problem and he tried doing a 360 to lose altitude.
    Maybe lost his engine doing the 360.
    N6678P
    Practice those emergency landing procedures!
     
  28. EdFred

    EdFred Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    That's a 250, and if he was running rich and didn't have tip tanks, that is probably fuel exhaustion since he had almost 3.5 hours of flightaware time that day. That doesn't include ground time.
     
  29. sourdough44

    sourdough44 Pattern Altitude

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    A fuel shortage is easy to figure out, for the investigators. Besides no fuel, there may be switching or quality issues.

    One doesn’t know just based on flights, don’t know how much fuel may or may not of been loaded at any stops.

    Clean, unimpeded fuel flowing to the engine is a biggie. Much of the time engine issues or ‘failures’ back up to fuel problems.
     
  30. Jamie Kirk

    Jamie Kirk Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Wow, I have flown in this plane. My father in law owned this plane for years, he did a complete restore of it and spared no expense. He sold it in 2013 I believe.
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2019
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  31. Tantalum

    Tantalum En-Route

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    A parachute. But that would have saved his life (likely, assuming he pulled it).. but it also would have meant he's not a real pilot and he would have been panned by many on PoA.. in addition, people would say he should have bought a Mooney as it's glide ratio makes it safer than a chute /s
     
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  32. Davecat

    Davecat Pre-Flight

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    No one mentioned that this flight was likely fighting strong headwinds which were howling here all day, not only at the surface but also 30-40kts at 3000'-6000' out of the northwest. No fire...fuel exhaustion possible.
     
  33. EdFred

    EdFred Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    A real pilot would have checked his fuel tanks. But I was waiting for the Cirrus cures all stupidity chime in.
     
  34. Tantalum

    Tantalum En-Route

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    Well this is true..
     
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  35. hindsight2020

    hindsight2020 En-Route

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    Sugarland to Boerne is 159NM. At a comanche 145-150 (155+ish if balls to the wall at 14+gph), you're looking at an 1:15 with a climb and no winds. With the prevailing westerly to NWesterly winds in the 3-9k yesterday between 40-50+ knots between C TX, NW LA, and Oklahoma, based on his due W direction of flight his GS could have been as slow as 100kts. That puts that flight at 1:36. If indeed that dude launched with less than 2 hours of gas, full knowing the winds aloft were gonna add 30+ minutes to such a short leg, and still decided to overfly all those airports with gas along I-10, then yeah that would be beyond the pale.

    Of course we don't know that. Older 4 tank bladdered fuel systems can be sketchy, especially when the full volumes are seldom exercised. As long as those bladders weren't breached in the crash, we should be able to get some forensics as to the integrity of the fuel system. All that said, won't be the first or last time that people run out of gas real close to the destination, with a dozen fuel options behind them all the way to the origination point. Real tough break they couldn't survive the urban landing.
     
  36. mryan75

    mryan75 Cleared for Takeoff

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    To be fair, this particular market (GA in the US) is the safest on God's green earth, with much lower regulatory burden than some other markets. So we do get something for our troubles. Rewrites of part 23 are also coming pretty soon if memory serves.
     
  37. Jamie Kirk

    Jamie Kirk Pre-takeoff checklist

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    This plane had 2 30g tanks, averaged cruise around 160-165kts sucking 13GPH @ 8k feet.
     
  38. Warmi

    Warmi Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Nah ... as I said , your typical RV plane is just as safe and just as refined as any certified plane of the same class when build exactly to specifications and by professionals who know what they are doing.
    If Cirrus were to release a kit verision of their flagship product and let people have at it in their garages , I am pretty sure you would see similar safety stats as with other mainstream experimentals - certificated or not.
     
  39. NavAir

    NavAir Pre-Flight

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    Photo shows engine in the wreckage. Just the usual ignorance of the press when reporting aviation stories: "He lost his engine"
     
  40. hindsight2020

    hindsight2020 En-Route

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    Interesting, I thought only the comanche 180s came in the main tank only variant. I thought all 250s and higher had the 4 tank setup. In any event, it certainly would have been prudent to bring in 2 hours of endurance at whatever fuel flow the deceased liked to fly, considering the higher than average headwinds yesterday.