KWVI Watsonville MId Air, Multiple Fatalities

Discussion in 'Aviation Mishaps' started by Shawn, Aug 18, 2022.

  1. Llewtrah381

    Llewtrah381 Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2010
    Messages:
    685

    Display name:
    Llewtrah
    While that may help some, I’m still reminded of the dictum I learned decades ago when learning to drive: “you can be dead right”. T-bones in intersections happen every day despite enough regs about highway right-of-way rules and running red lights. Because of that, I’d bet most people on this thread, regardless of who they blame for this accident, pause and look to see if someone is running a red light before being the first into the intersection when the light changes. Only a fool would assert their right-of-way in front of a car running a red light.

    I have my opinion about who was wrong reg-wise here but both were dead wrong in how they individually managed the risk they were faced with and aware of, regardless of regs.
     
    John Spartan and Salty like this.
  2. wanttaja

    wanttaja En-Route

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2008
    Messages:
    3,996
    Location:
    Seattle

    Display name:
    Ron Wanttaja
    However the NTSB rules in this, I expect them to call for the FAA to update the right-of-way rules.

    Our current rules were implemented in an *era without aircraft radios*. "Final", to the original rules, meant the aircraft was close to the runway, not multiple miles away. There was no way to declare you were on final three miles away. Most of the right-of-way rules (and many other) are MUCH older than that, coming from the nautical world.

    I like the comment made by an earlier poster: The twin pilot was using the radio as a horn, not as an aid to safety.

    Ron Wanttaja
     
    Ed Haywood, SFDukie, Schokie and 5 others like this.
  3. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2007
    Messages:
    20,793
    Location:
    PUDBY

    Display name:
    Richard Palm
    I'm not qualified to answer that. Earlier in the thread, someone who had flown similar aircraft, and therefore is presumably qualified, said that it would be possible to get configured for landing in time. Or maybe the pilot had already decided to go around. But let's just think this through: If your claim is that the right-of-way rule depends on whether the aircraft on final is properly configured for landing, then in order for a pilot who is not yet on final to know who had the right-of-way, he or she would have to not only visually acquire the other aircraft, but would have to be able to see whether its gear and flaps were down, and have to know how far that model of aircraft would have to be from the runway in order to get the gear down in time, and would have to know what flap settings were allowable under the existing conditions for that aircraft. That would add to confusion on the subject, not alleviate it.

    The houses around WVI are a lot farther from the runway that the ones in that incident. Do you think the FAA considers low approaches illegal at WVI?
     
    SFDukie likes this.
  4. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2007
    Messages:
    20,793
    Location:
    PUDBY

    Display name:
    Richard Palm
    If you're not sure whether there's room, ask.

    Given that the 152 reported turning base after the 340 reported a three-mile final, even if the 340 had been going the 117 knots recommended in this article, that's only a 35% reduction of speed from 180 knots, so it's likely that the 340 would still have been forced to do a go around.
     
  5. Salty

    Salty Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2016
    Messages:
    11,621
    Location:
    FL

    Display name:
    Salty
    Would have made it a LOT easier for the twin to see and avoid, eh?
     
  6. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2007
    Messages:
    20,793
    Location:
    PUDBY

    Display name:
    Richard Palm
    The extra 10 or 20 seconds would have made it easier for both of them to avoid each other.
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2022
    donjohnston likes this.
  7. PaulS

    PaulS Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    Messages:
    13,199
    Location:
    New England

    Display name:
    PaulS
    I'm pretty certain of it, at least the ones I've flown. I make call outs, and I break off if I think I have any chance of conflict. I have adsb and probably have one of the best views of the pattern and the runway when flying in. Better than someone in the pattern.

    Anyone with a little bit competence would not have done what the 340 pilot did, from start to finish. He made a lot of errors. The 152 pilot made one grave error, turning base after he heard the 340 call 3 mile final. Whether he was in the regs or not, that move killed him.

    Straight ins for me are always a matter of convenience, (meaning I would not purposefully maneuver to a straight in final) if I'm lined up for a long base and no one is making calls in the pattern I'll fly the base to final. Again, you have a great view of what's in the pattern. Conflict? turn to avoid, regroup. Generally if I have to break off something like that, I'll maneuver to a standard 45 entry.

    Someone will bring up non radio planes. They are a problem for any entry into the pattern. If you fly to a public field, you should have a radio. You are not required, but you should have one and use it.

    It will be interesting to see the experience level of these two pilots.

    As far as deconflicting, we've all been talking about turning to avoid. But Bruce C. made a comment that was like a revelation to me. That was to climb out of the pattern. In certain scenarios, maybe in most cases, that is a great idea if you have the room. We have machines that operate in 3 dimensions. Why limit ourselves to two?
     
  8. ElPaso Pilot

    ElPaso Pilot Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    May 26, 2006
    Messages:
    1,879

    Display name:
    ElPaso Pilot

    I’m going to flip your math around a bit.

    The time difference of the 340’s 3 mile call point to the collision point at approach speeds of 180 knots and 117 knots is roughly 30 seconds.

    If the 152 was flying 65 knots approach and maintained that during his go-around, in 30 more seconds he would have been ~3200 feet beyond the collision point, past midfield, and the 117 knot 340 would have landed normally and be rolling out, just like at any other normal, imperfect but functional airport day.


    Posting the video link again.

    Drag to 25 seconds to see the 152’s perspective.

     
    Darryl Snover and Jim K like this.
  9. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2007
    Messages:
    20,793
    Location:
    PUDBY

    Display name:
    Richard Palm
    There are some uncertainties in the calculations. I don't know how much time passed between the three-mile report and the turning base report. I also guessed that the 340 pilot was reporting his distance to the airport reference point, or about two miles from the collision point. One error I made is that I forgot to take into account the along-track speed of the 152.

    I was surprised that the recommended final approach speed is only 35% less than his reported ground speed. (That equates to reported ground speed being about 54% greater than the recommended final approach speed.)
     
  10. ElPaso Pilot

    ElPaso Pilot Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    May 26, 2006
    Messages:
    1,879

    Display name:
    ElPaso Pilot
    I made similar assumptions.

    Collision point per the NTSB report is 700’ from the threshold.

    C199355D-3D14-4A39-B0C4-1E5AA91A3745.jpeg

    Distance between the collision point and the airport marker is 2300 ft

    3E9767B4-7C4C-4515-AAB3-6A218AB4B459.jpeg

    3 nm less 2300 feet to the collision point at 117 knots and 180 knots is ~ 30 seconds difference.

    Ignoring where the 152 calls base, but assuming he flys 30 more seconds at 65 knots past the collision point puts him 3200 feet further in his go around when the 340 reaches the same collision point at 117 knots.

    ABC76AF3-A7F7-4AF6-A442-6CADCDAA4926.jpeg

    Which is past midfield on the upwind. And this now looks like any other day at the airport.

    Bonus points for the 340, who now might even have time to drop the gear, flaps, and maybe even get it stopped before the fence at the far end.

    Fly safe y’all.
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2022
    Darryl Snover likes this.
  11. John Spartan

    John Spartan Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2022
    Messages:
    122

    Display name:
    Spartan
    I am a novice flyer so you guys know way more than me but I will say this. Flying the pattern today at an untowered, we went extended downwind and waited for a twin who called 3 mile final rather than turn in front of them. And they had suggested we could probably beat them to the runway for our touch and go. I was plenty happy to have my instructor suggest we extend and let them pass and this thread DID pop up in my mind. I don’t need to beat anyone to the runway. Seems like a stupid way to fly.
     
  12. Tarheelpilot

    Tarheelpilot Final Approach PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2010
    Messages:
    6,905
    Location:
    North Carolina once again.

    Display name:
    Tarheelpilot
    There a few infallible rules in aviation. However anytime someone is calling a final within four miles of the runway I like to have a visual on the traffic as I turn base to follow them in to land. Sometimes it works out that I had time to go first. That’s ok by me.
     
  13. PaulS

    PaulS Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    Messages:
    13,199
    Location:
    New England

    Display name:
    PaulS
    Had the 152 pilot been as on the ball as your instructor and now you were , this accident would not have happened. There are people in this thread who feel it necessary to apply absolute blame to one individual(not you). But many accidents are not like that. Whatever the twin pilot was up to, had there not been other aircraft in the pattern we would have probably heard about this incident. Had the twin pilot not made the 3 mile call then I would have had to agree that it was 100 percent his fault. But he made the call and the other pilot made his fateful turn. You can reasonably expect the twin to be going at least a mile and half a minute, maybe 2 miles a minute at 3 miles. The 152 was probably going a mile a minute? Maybe less, he would have been about a mile from the final , and about a mile from the runway when he turned final. It was just a bad decision on the 152 guy even if the twin was going a reasonable speed. He gets some blame in this.

    I like discussing these accidents because it's a chance to learn from others mistakes and I think about how I would react if I were in the cockpit of each aircraft when this stuff is going on.
     
    John Spartan likes this.
  14. Aaron Leiby

    Aaron Leiby Filing Flight Plan

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2022
    Messages:
    10

    Display name:
    Aaron Leiby
    Since starting flight training, I find myself treating green lights as clearance to enter the intersection, but always make sure to look both directions to ensure “final is clear” before crossing. (Old behavior, new association.)
     
    John Spartan likes this.
  15. donjohnston

    donjohnston Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2013
    Messages:
    1,934
    Location:
    Panama City, FL

    Display name:
    Don
    If you're approaching an intersection where there is limited visibility of crossing traffic until you are at the intersection and the light is already green are you stopping to check for crossing traffic before entering the intersection?

    My point is that sometimes we have to trust that other people are following the rules. Otherwise we become the hazard ourselves.
     
    Salty and TCABM like this.
  16. Albany Tom

    Albany Tom Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2021
    Messages:
    2,215

    Display name:
    Albany Tom
    I go on green, but I also look. It wasn't flight training that taught me that, it was nearly getting hit by a Troy fire truck flying through an intersection without a siren 20+ years ago. Would have been his fault, I suppose, but wouldn't have done me any good.
     
    John Spartan likes this.
  17. dbahn

    dbahn Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2007
    Messages:
    518
    Location:
    Vermont

    Display name:
    Dave Bahnson
    I noticed the the Advisory Circular relating to pilot responsibilities in avoiding mid-air collisions was revised and issued on October 20th of this year. I don't know if that is in response to the Watsonville mid-air, but it is timely. I'm not sure how it compares word for word to the previous version.

    Out of curiosity does anyone know when "NOTAM" was changed from "Notices to Airmen" to "Notices to Air Missions"?
     
  18. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 25, 2006
    Messages:
    14,678
    Location:
    Chapel Hill NC

    Display name:
    Mark
    Last December.
     
  19. PaulS

    PaulS Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    Messages:
    13,199
    Location:
    New England

    Display name:
    PaulS
    Not sure if it was in response, but definitely needed. I'm always surprised at the number of pilots unworried about the risk of a midair, who then start pulling stats to back their notions. I want to be flying knowing that everyone up there is vigilant, it can happen anytime anywhere. It's our job as pilots to actively try to prevent it.
     
  20. Salty

    Salty Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2016
    Messages:
    11,621
    Location:
    FL

    Display name:
    Salty
    What was needed? I don't see any changes that help clarify any of the discussions on this thread.
     
  21. PaulS

    PaulS Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    Messages:
    13,199
    Location:
    New England

    Display name:
    PaulS
    Pointing out that midairs are always a risk when flying and that pilots need to be vigilant and look for conflicts. Aviation 101. That was needed.
     
  22. Salty

    Salty Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2016
    Messages:
    11,621
    Location:
    FL

    Display name:
    Salty
    Was that added in this revision?
     
  23. PaulS

    PaulS Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    Messages:
    13,199
    Location:
    New England

    Display name:
    PaulS
    Not sure. But I do think that pilots need to be reminded that even though mid airs are relatively rare, they are still a big risk if we let our guard down. Why the questions, do you think the risk for a mid air is no big deal?
     
  24. Salty

    Salty Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2016
    Messages:
    11,621
    Location:
    FL

    Display name:
    Salty
    Not at all. I don't see anything new in that revision that does what you are describing.
     
  25. luvflyin

    luvflyin Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 8, 2015
    Messages:
    14,147
    Location:
    Vancouver, WA

    Display name:
    Luvflyin
    This don't tell us a whole lot. Has anyone here gone through it to find the changes?

    PRINCIPAL CHANGES. This revision to the AC incorporates additional information
    regarding pilot actions, procedures, Notices to Air Missions (NOTAM), and aircraft
    technology to mitigate the risk of a pilot causing or being involved in a ground collision,
    in-flight collision, or NMAC
     
  26. dbahn

    dbahn Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2007
    Messages:
    518
    Location:
    Vermont

    Display name:
    Dave Bahnson
    I'm not curious enough to compare them side by side, but the middle bullet has has to be new since the previous version was created in 2016. Most of the rest of it "seems to be familiar".

    Clipboard01.jpg
     
  27. PaulS

    PaulS Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    Messages:
    13,199
    Location:
    New England

    Display name:
    PaulS
    I still can't figure out what you are talking about, what am I describing that is not in there. Are you looking for my exact words in there? I doubt you'll find them.
     
  28. Salty

    Salty Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2016
    Messages:
    11,621
    Location:
    FL

    Display name:
    Salty
    You said this update was definitely needed. I’m still trying to figure out what about the update was needed and relevant to this thread.
     
  29. PaulS

    PaulS Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    Messages:
    13,199
    Location:
    New England

    Display name:
    PaulS
    Ahhhhh, we are having a failure to communicate, probably my fault. I said, "..but definitely needed." I didn't use the word "update". In my next sentence I talked about pilots who seem to feel midairs are low risk compared to other things, it's good to remind pilots that it's not a big sky out there.

    As far as being relevant to the thread, you're kidding right? Three people dying in a midair is what started the thread.
     
  30. Salty

    Salty Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2016
    Messages:
    11,621
    Location:
    FL

    Display name:
    Salty
    Still not quite connected. There were changes to the Advisory. I didn't see any change that was relevant to this thread.

    I thought you saw a change that was relevant. I would love to see a relevant change to the advisory that actually helps us address some of the disagreements that have been brought up on this thread, but I'm not seeing anything in this change that does so.

    I don't really disagree with your broader point about pilots opinions on midair risk, but I'm not sure an advisory is going to help with that.
     
  31. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2007
    Messages:
    20,793
    Location:
    PUDBY

    Display name:
    Richard Palm
    I'm wondering whether the process for revising advisory circulars is capable of going fast enough to incorporate lessons learned from an accident that happened less than three months ago.
     
  32. dbahn

    dbahn Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2007
    Messages:
    518
    Location:
    Vermont

    Display name:
    Dave Bahnson
    I'm thinking more that the FAA just felt that after Watsonville pilots needed a timely reminder about mid-air avoidance and tweaked the existing advisory to update things like Notices to Air Missions (NOTAM), since Notices to Airmen was so offensive.
     
  33. JOhnH

    JOhnH Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 20, 2009
    Messages:
    13,463
    Location:
    Florida

    Display name:
    Right Seater
    I'm late to this conversation, so I don't know if this possibility has been mentioned:

    Perhaps the poor guy had to go to the bathroom really really bad.
     
  34. MauleSkinner

    MauleSkinner Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2005
    Messages:
    13,106
    Location:
    Wichita, KS

    Display name:
    MauleSkinner
    Which one?
     
    Ed Haywood likes this.
  35. PaulS

    PaulS Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    Messages:
    13,199
    Location:
    New England

    Display name:
    PaulS

    Ok, let me try again, my post, that comment, those three words "but definitely needed" wasn't about the update of the advisory, it was about the relevance and the timing of the advisory being "definitely needed". I try to be accurate with my posts, if that was about the update I would have said "but that update was definitely needed". I don't know what they updated in the advisory. In fact the more I think about it, there was probably no big break throughs in the update. I'm thinking it's more likely the people at the FAA said "damn, these guys are flying into each other again, how do we get them to read the see and avoid advisory again?". And an update was released. Maybe, or maybe not.

    The broader point was the point. Again, I probably should have been clearer, but I thought the relevance of the definitely needed comment would be apparent in the rest of the post. Apparently I was wrong.
     
  36. Salty

    Salty Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2016
    Messages:
    11,621
    Location:
    FL

    Display name:
    Salty
    I'm sure it was at least 51% my confusion. Can we go a few pages arguing about who was more at fault? ;)
     
  37. Daleandee

    Daleandee En-Route

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2020
    Messages:
    4,158

    Display name:
    Dale Andee
    Seems that radio use with some courtesy & perhaps a bit of politeness goes a long ways. Today while preparing to depart on runway 23 I heard a pilot call 5 miles out landing on runway 35. I keyed the radio to say that I would hold for the traffic landing on the crossing runway. Wasn't too long before he called to tell me he would be entering a downwind for 23 and I could go ahead and depart.

    I'm guessing him seeing the workers on 35 was what changed his mind. There's a notam on the runway closure ... but who reads those ...? :dunno:
     
  38. JOhnH

    JOhnH Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 20, 2009
    Messages:
    13,463
    Location:
    Florida

    Display name:
    Right Seater
    Did you by chance mention to him that 35 was closed?
     
  39. Daleandee

    Daleandee En-Route

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2020
    Messages:
    4,158

    Display name:
    Dale Andee
    Prolly should have but I didn't. I was in the middle of my departure runup & wasn't really thinking about it until I heard him change runways ...
     
  40. PaulS

    PaulS Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    Messages:
    13,199
    Location:
    New England

    Display name:
    PaulS
    Oh we could easily do that, lol. But it's late and I'm tired. We can each accept 51% responsibility.