Towers snitching on aborted take-offs?

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by schmookeeg, Sep 16, 2022.

  1. Fearless Tower

    Fearless Tower Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Just like when they contact a pilot after an emergency, they are approaching it from a pure data collection approach. When I have been contacted after declaring an emergency, I didn't get the feel that they were looking for violations, but that said, if they find one during the process, they could certainly violate you.
     
  2. Kritchlow

    Kritchlow Final Approach

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    I’ve never known there to not be a follow up from the Feds.
     
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  3. Doc Holliday

    Doc Holliday Pattern Altitude

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    This was started by the ATC side of the FAA. They wanted to collect data on all occurrences, and it’s submitted via ATQA (Air Traffic Quality Assurance).

    But once submitted, now it has to be investigated, so ATC volunteered Flight Standards to investigate and fill out the reports.

    These are not something FSDO inspectors look forward to.

    ATC wants all of these and other occurrences reported and investigated, then data collected. It just adds more work to Flight Standards who are understaffed.

    Just give the calling ASI the info he needs to close out the report.
     
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  4. Pilawt

    Pilawt Final Approach

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    I aborted a takeoff at the home drome a few months ago. Y'know the old "airspeed alive" drill? Well, it wasn't. I announced the abort, turned off at the high-speed and tower asked the reason for the abort. "Negative airspeed indication," with a request to taxi back to my hangar, seemed to satisfy his inquiry. Nothing was ever heard about it again.
     
  5. luvflyin

    luvflyin Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Whadja find out? Bug in the pitot?
     
  6. tspear

    tspear En-Route

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    Just curious, why? What did they hope to gain?

    Tim
     
  7. Pilawt

    Pilawt Final Approach

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    It was the first flight after work had been done to correct a static leak, and something had not been properly reconnected.
     
  8. Initial Fix

    Initial Fix Line Up and Wait

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    Too many folks without anything productive to do?
     
  9. Tantalum

    Tantalum Final Approach

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    fair. I guess 'fly the plane first' doesn't necessarily mean 'fly it into the air' -
     
  10. Tantalum

    Tantalum Final Approach

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    ..and that's part of what I'm thinking and left out of my original thoughts on this. I recently have been doing more flights, in twins, to airports in the 2200 to 3000 range. I check the start stop in the book and at some point you're basically committed to flying, or probably crashing. At a 5K+ runway, sure, stop if anything anomalous occurs. But at L52 if I'm past my start/stop point chances are I'm taking the Aztec into the air for most issues, getting that gear up pronto, and then figuring things out. Catastrophic engine failure ofcourse not withstanding.. but a popped door, alternator, we're flying.
     
  11. Doc Holliday

    Doc Holliday Pattern Altitude

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    Data.

    A lot of the data they collect is useful in finding problems that can be rectified. Then there’s data they collect that goes to a huge database, and management types use that data to justify budgets and pay grades.
     
  12. RussR

    RussR En-Route

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    I purposely put in some weasel words like "broad generalization" in my post for situations like this, as my get out of jail free card. But in most cases in most piston airplanes, you'd be best served by stopping on the remaining runway if any abnormality occurs. And the example speeds in @Tantalum 's post were 30 and 45 knots. So, pretty slow and definitely better to stop.

    Besides, I bet the absolute most common initial response to a door popping open for anyone who hasn't practiced it, is to immediately reach for the door, in an attempt to close it before takeoff. Obviously the complete wrong reaction, but I've seen it. I'd much rather see the default, instinctive behavior for any problem be to abort the takeoff.
     
  13. Plano Pilot

    Plano Pilot Line Up and Wait

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    A few years ago, I departed KADS in our C340, IFR with around 1500 overcast, the gear would not come up. Stayed below the overcast and landed. Around a month later I was asked to call the FAA. All they wanted to know why and a scanned copy of the maintenance log entry of the repair, squat switch.

    I agree that aborting for minor problems and then having to deal the FAA will cause pilots rethinking aborting. Not safer.

    Around the same time, we departed KJQF in the Citation and got a main cabin door light. Pretty much the same, around the pattern and landed. No call from the FAA. FO did not close the cabin door all the way.

    I have also noticed how towers will treat us differently between the C340 vs the Citation. In the C340 tower will tell us to hold short of the runway, I rarely get that in the Citation, when calling ready.










     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2022
  14. PastZTL

    PastZTL Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I agree that Air Traffic wanted to collect data, but that was to identify occurrences where the services AT provided may need review. If a pilot aborts a takeoff, there may be AT involvement that needs to be assessed/addressed. If not, AT is done with the event. If Flight Standards (a completely different line of business within the FAA) decides they want to access the data and investigate, that's completely up to them, it is not AT's call (or concern).
     
  15. Lindberg

    Lindberg Final Approach

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    No doubt you took the correct action, but I'll disagree that this wasn't an emergency. I'm saying this not for you, but for others who don't already know and the many who are too slow to realize they have an emergency.

     
  16. Bob Noel

    Bob Noel Touchdown! Greaser!

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    why would an open door be a safety concern and require timely assistance?

    not being snarky, just asking
     
  17. Groundpounder

    Groundpounder En-Route

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    I had to abort a takeoff last year due to no airspeed indication. I got a call from an ASI about a month later. He asked for some information which I emailed to him, and he replied back saying thanks, and that was it. Took maybe 10 min of my time, no big deal at all. I knew that I was going to get contacted, so I got copies of the maintenance write up and corrective action all ready to send off.
     
  18. Doc Holliday

    Doc Holliday Pattern Altitude

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    ATC doesn’t investigate occurrences, Flight Standards does. If an occurrence is dropped into ATQA, the only way to close it out is have FS assign an Inspector to do the task. It’s another classic “ATC will write the report” then hand it off for someone else to complete.

    ATC does have very limited ability to close out an occurrence, but they rely on FS to do it for them.

    And to add more fun for FS, if the occurrence doesn’t get closed out in the required time frame, the manager of the FSDO the occurrence was assigned starts getting nasty emails from ATQA to get it closed, or else.

    Frankly many occurrences should never be filed and handled at the local level (ATC) but managers are looking for numbers and data for their facility, so they put pressure to log anything and everything. And of course, FS gets more work dumped on them with an already overloaded work program.
     
  19. Jeff767

    Jeff767 Line Up and Wait

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    I disagree on far better to abort. A lot goes into that decision and depending on runway length the same considerations as a large jet might apply. Aborts also occur at high gross weights. The abort decision should really have been made prior to pushing the power up after looking at the runway length, weather and weight. Going off the end of the runway full of fuel is often catastrophic.
     
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  20. Lindberg

    Lindberg Final Approach

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    To immediately return and land.
     
  21. Fearless Tower

    Fearless Tower Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I believe you, but WHY would the ATC side care?

    Or was someone on the ATC side of the house intentionally trying to make work for the FSDOs?
     
  22. midwestpa24

    midwestpa24 En-Route

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    Going off the end of the runway at 40-60 mph or less is far better than taking an unairworthy or uncontrollable aircraft into the air and impacting vertically.

    There is no one size fits all. Every situation will have a different solution.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/East_Coast_Jets_Flight_81

    https://aviation-safety.net/database/record.php?id=20170308-0
     
  23. Doc Holliday

    Doc Holliday Pattern Altitude

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    Data. Everything is dependent on data. Facility funding and staffing, airfield funding and staffing.

    Management uses data to justify jobs and promotions. The higher ups in the FAA use data to go to the Transportation Secretary to expand budgets, and the DOT Secretary uses data to go to Congress and ask for more appropriations.
     
  24. Fearless Tower

    Fearless Tower Touchdown! Greaser!

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    That's absurd and in some ways the crux of why people die in open door situations.

    The people who die are the ones who think of it as an emergency that must be dealt with immediately and they overreact and create their own emergency.

    There was a guy a a few years ago who wrecked a perfectly good Cessna 337 at Brookneal/Campbell County VA because the door popped open in cruise flight. Rushed and emergency descent and landing and ran the damn airplane off the runway. Airplane totaled for a door. Fortunately the pilot, his wife and dog survived.

    I was fortunate that the lesson (that doors popping open in flight are not emergencies) was emphasized by my dad long before I became a pilot. When I was in high school, a pilot was killed taking off from PHX back in the 80s and had the door on a Bonanza pop open after takeoff. After telling tower, she tried to reach over and close it and she died. I say I was fortunate, because when it first happened to me, it didn't freak me out. I realized what it was. I flew the airplane. In the first instance it was a Duchess and I was able to close the door in flight after putting it on autopilot and slowing down/reaching through the storm window and pulling it closed.

    In the case of my Baron instance, I was departing from an unfamiliar, small airport with a narrow short runway at night. I realized I wasn't going to be able to close it in flight, but no need to complicate the situation by turning an inconvenience into an emergency. In that case, I kept control, pulled the power back to reduce the noise and diverted to a nearby airport with better lighting and longer-wider runway where I could then do a normal approach/landing and secure the door on the ground.
     
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  25. Fearless Tower

    Fearless Tower Touchdown! Greaser!

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    The Flight 81 is probably a bad example, but this is why we do take off briefings in multi crew airplanes.

    It is a technique typically introduced in ME training, but the takeoff briefing is a good habit to get into even in solo single engine flying. Kind of like doing a GUMPS check before landing.

    Most takeoff briefs will review what circumstances will trigger an abort. This can be personally tailored or dictated by the company. Like Jeff said, it is a decision that you want to think about and have down before pushing the power up.

    You can specify/tailor criteria to abort below VR and anything that will trigger an abort above VR/V1/Red line....whatever you want to use.

    Most of the outfits I have flown with would only abort after V1 for flight control issue for the reasons you suggested.
     
  26. RudyP

    RudyP Cleared for Takeoff

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    Can’t speak for every airplane but I agree with this in general. I’ve had it happen once - and other than having some really cold air blasting on the side of my body (this was winter in NJ) it was pretty much a non event. Took my time doing a normal return to pattern and landing. Closed the door properly on taxi and took off again. Total time lost was just a few minutes and other than being a bit chilly, no harm done.
     
  27. mandm

    mandm Line Up and Wait

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    Door open is not something really taught, but I think it is important to address it. It does happen. My thoughts are slow the airplane down, at speed a door open is a bit much. Slow it down it is much more manageable. But of course don’t stall the plane, keep an eye on it.
     
  28. Tantalum

    Tantalum Final Approach

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    This whole discussion started with my observation about aborting a takeoff for an alternator light or popped door .. not about taking an unairworthy plane flying

    Pulling the power in a 172 on a 5K runway is one thing, a 5,000+ lb twin on 2200' is another
     
  29. Todd82

    Todd82 Line Up and Wait

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    Where I trained at ABE in 06-07 basically shared a parking lot with ECJ, some of their guys were hired after CFIing where I was. That was the first aviation tragedy I felt connected to once I started flying. Unfortunately there have been several more over time.
     
  30. Sundancer

    Sundancer En-Route

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    Adds a few bodies to the FAA manning document, collecting and massaging marginally useful (or useless) data
     
  31. German guy

    German guy Cleared for Takeoff

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    I'm wondering the same.

    Directly from the FAA's AIM website, '3-4-5 Military Operations Areas':

    'Pilots operating under VFR should exercise extreme caution while flying within a MOA when military activity is being conducted. The activity status (active/inactive) of MOAs may change frequently. Therefore, pilots should contact any FSS within 100 miles of the area to obtain accurate real‐time information concerning the MOA hours of operation. Prior to entering an active MOA, pilots should contact the controlling agency for traffic advisories.'

    It's all 'should', not 'shall'.

    Furthermore, the FAA says that 'VFR aircraft are not denied access': https://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/publications/atpubs/pham_html/chap25_section_1.html
     
  32. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    There’s no requirement for VFR but non participating IFRs must remain clear without authorization (LOA).

    No requirement for two way comms in a warning area either but if ATC is working an aircraft that penetrates the warning area without coordination, the receiving side (FACSFAC) is gonna write it up as an MOR.
     
  33. tspear

    tspear En-Route

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    The CFI I had for my PPL, did actually have me take off with an open door, and open a door in flight. So some do teach it.

    Tim
     
  34. FORANE

    FORANE En-Route

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    Regarding open doors, the significance is going to vary widely depending on aircraft of course.

    In private pilot training in a 152, we intentionally opened both pilot and copilot doors, trimmed the aircraft, let go of the yoke and flew an approach just by manipulating the throttle and opening right or left door to steer towards the runway.

    When soloing a 152 one of the doors inadvertently opened and I simply ignored it other than circling to land and adjust it on the ground.

    Again, an open door in a different aircraft could be a significant issue.
     
  35. Pinecone

    Pinecone Cleared for Takeoff

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    The thing with MOAs are, many are for student training.

    So, you really want to be flying through an area with a STUDENT in a JET??????

    :D
     
  36. LesGawlik

    LesGawlik Line Up and Wait

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    Doors opening in flight? That's what I thought rudder trim was for in a 182.
     
  37. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    This seems like an overall waste of time, and I agree that it will likely cause people to opt to not abort when they should (let's ignore for now whether or not aborting is/was the right call).

    In the big jet world, aborted takeoffs (ATOs) are reportable and recorded items. When I worked at the meatball shaped jet engine factory, ATOs were one of the items that we kept track of and had to answer to the FAA if the number of ATOs per flight hour (or some similar metric, it's been a while) got above a particular threshold. That assumes the ATO was related to our engine and not something else, of course. Not the engine's fault if the door wasn't latched.

    My guess is that more than anything they're collecting data on the small planes that they used to generally only collect at higher levels. This is a double edged sword. If that data drives some decisions that can legitimately improve safety at our level (something that seems to not happen often), then that's a positive. On the other hand, fear of a call from the feds does drive behavior decisions, and things that improve safety also usually cost money.
     
  38. Half Fast

    Half Fast Final Approach

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    Mandatory inspection of door latches every 50 hours?
     
  39. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    And that there would be the perfect example of a "fix" to a "problem" that doesn't exist.
     
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  40. Half Fast

    Half Fast Final Approach

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    Yep, and in the finest tradition of the FAA. ;)
     
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