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Blue Angels Commander Resigns  
User currently offlinecanoecarrier From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 2839 posts, RR: 12
Posted (3 years 3 months 6 days 3 hours ago) and read 7665 times:

http://www.military.com/news/article...-resigns-over-unsafe-maneuver.html

"Officials offered no details in a brief statement just released, but it is doubtless linked to the Blue Angels' May 22 performance at the Lynchburg Regional Air Show in Virginia. Jets flying a so-called Barrel Roll Break maneuver reportedly came in too low before climbing again."

The navy's been pretty busy this year, this should make him the 12th CO relieved of duty this year.


The beatings will continue until morale improves
25 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinerfields5421 From United States of America, joined Jul 2007, 7607 posts, RR: 32
Reply 1, posted (3 years 3 months 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 7296 times:

I need to dig my old uniforms out. The way things are going, an old Senior Chief might get a good job these days.

User currently offlinecanoecarrier From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 2839 posts, RR: 12
Reply 2, posted (3 years 3 months 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 7196 times:

Quoting rfields5421 (Reply 1):
I need to dig my old uniforms out. The way things are going, an old Senior Chief might get a good job these days.

No joke! Here's the Navy's press release if you're interested.

http://www.navy.mil/search/display.asp?story_id=60665

This is shortly after the CO of Norfolk Naval Shipyard got relieved of duty..and he followed another guy that was relieved last year in September. It's starting to look like the Stalin Purge.



The beatings will continue until morale improves
User currently onlineJoeCanuck From Canada, joined Dec 2005, 5435 posts, RR: 30
Reply 3, posted (3 years 3 months 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 6847 times:

Quoting canoecarrier (Reply 2):
It's starting to look like the Stalin Purge.

Stalin tended to have more abrupt and permanent techniques for retiring officers...



What the...?
User currently offlinenomadd22 From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 1858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (3 years 3 months 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 6801 times:

I imagine standards got tightened up some after they lost a C-17 because of a pilot blatantly ignoring minimum safety protocols. Airshows aren't a license to be reckless.


Andy Goetsch
User currently onlineJoeCanuck From Canada, joined Dec 2005, 5435 posts, RR: 30
Reply 5, posted (3 years 3 months 4 days ago) and read 6789 times:

Quoting nomadd22 (Reply 4):
I imagine standards got tightened up some after they lost a C-17 because of a pilot blatantly ignoring minimum safety protocols. Airshows aren't a license to be reckless.

I hope so...the only ones who get a kick out of breaking regs at a show, are hot shots. The folks on the ground don't notice...so why do it?

Inadvertent is one thing...busting regs for kicks is idiotic.



What the...?
User currently offlinerfields5421 From United States of America, joined Jul 2007, 7607 posts, RR: 32
Reply 6, posted (3 years 3 months 4 days ago) and read 6773 times:

I wonder if he was purposely breaking regs, or if the maneuver did not go exactly as planned.

Rather than break off, he tried to push the aircraft past the normal safety envelope to keep the show going. He got away with it enough to avoid crashing the plane, but not without being obviously in the wrong place doing the wrong thing.


User currently offlinechecksixx From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 1088 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (3 years 3 months 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 6590 times:

Wonder if it was just an incorrect altimeter setting...?

User currently offlineebj1248650 From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 1932 posts, RR: 1
Reply 8, posted (3 years 3 months 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 6440 times:

"I performed a maneuver that had an unacceptably low minimum altitude. This maneuver, combined with other instances of not meeting the airborne standard that makes the Blue Angels the exceptional organization that it is, led to my decision to step down."

According to his statement, this is not the first time the standards have not been met. What's not clear is whether he was remiss more than once or if other team members have been in error and could not be reigned in. His statement points to his having pushed the limits on the occassion of the low altitude manuever and it was too noticeable. As for the altimeter not being set properly, I suppose that could be a contributing factor but his statement doesn't point to that.

On the flip side, the Thunderbirds lost several T-38s in a formation that dived into the ground because the leader is alleged to have not set the altimeter prior to takeoff.



Dare to dream; dream big!
User currently offlinecalpilot From United States of America, joined Oct 1999, 998 posts, RR: 14
Reply 9, posted (3 years 3 months 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 6315 times:

Quoting ebj1248650 (Reply 8):
On the flip side, the Thunderbirds lost several T-38s in a formation that dived into the ground because the leader is alleged to have not set the altimeter prior to takeoff.

Please don't post B.S. on a forum without having the facts first. You do a disservice to the men who lost their lives, and those who have an interest in aviation facts.

The crash of the 1982 Diamond in the "Line Abreast Loop" was attributed to a major malfunction in the Bosses aircraft.

NOT! a miss set altimeter.


User currently offlineZANL188 From United States of America, joined Oct 2006, 3520 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (3 years 3 months 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 6310 times:
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Quoting calpilot (Reply 9):
The crash of the 1982 Diamond in the "Line Abreast Loop" was attributed to a major malfunction in the Bosses aircraft.

NOT! a miss set altimeter.

  

Absolutely correct. Thank you.



Legal considerations provided by: Dewey, Cheatum, and Howe
User currently offlinechuchoteur From France, joined Sep 2006, 763 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (3 years 3 months 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 6200 times:

... maybe the Navy is somewhat hypersensitive about low passes these days?

I seem to recall that 2 F/A18 pilots got grounded (last year?) following an ultra low pass over a football match... the comments regarding their general aptitude for flight duties were quite explicit as far as I can remember.

http://www.navytimes.com/news/2010/03/navy_pilots_punished_031910w/


User currently offlinecargotanker From United States of America, joined Oct 2009, 155 posts, RR: 1
Reply 12, posted (3 years 3 months 2 days 12 hours ago) and read 6168 times:

Quoting chuchoteur (Reply 11):
... maybe the Navy is somewhat hypersensitive about low passes these days?

I think the services are appropriately sensitive to any misuse of aircraft. I know that I'd get my wings yanked in a heartbeat if I decided to put on my own airshow or do an illegal flyover. The USAF came down hard on several pilots this year after a football game flyover:

http://www.airforcetimes.com/news/20...pilot-at-fault-for-flyover-032311/

I looked at the Lynchburg airshow on you tube and the manuever didn't look significantly abnormal, especially considering the Blue Angels, as I recall, seem to fly very low during their shows (there are numerous pictures on this site of the Blues flying less than 50 feet).

Here's a great youtube clip of the incident:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dlUWQlXQB20

You can see the Blues break apart at the end of the second maneuver, apparently some sort of 'knock it off' or emergency separation procedure.

"This maneuver, combined with other instances of not meeting the airborne standard that makes the Blue Angels the exceptional organization that it is, led to my decision to step down," Cmdr. Dave Koss, the team's commanding officer, said in today's statement.

I don't know what the commander means by 'other instances' but it seems this may have been a string of instances. Does this mean that the CO of the Blue Angels found their standard airshow profile a bit stale and boring and tried to spice it up by going lower? Seems odd.

Quoting ebj1248650 (Reply 8):
The crash of the 1982 Diamond in the "Line Abreast Loop" was attributed to a major malfunction in the Bosses aircraft.

He may have been getting his accidents mixed up. The 2003 Boise Thunderbird crash involved the pilot misreading his altitude.


User currently offlinedragon6172 From United States of America, joined Jul 2007, 1202 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (3 years 3 months 2 days 12 hours ago) and read 6155 times:

Quoting cargotanker (Reply 12):
I looked at the Lynchburg airshow on you tube and the manuever didn't look significantly abnormal, especially considering the Blue Angels, as I recall, seem to fly very low during their shows (there are numerous pictures on this site of the Blues flying less than 50 feet).

From the video it looks as if they recovered from the loop between 100-200 feet. There are some solo manuevers performed at that altitude or lower, or maybe even the diamond on a level pass. But the fact that this was the diamond recovering from a loop/roll is what makes it unacceptablely low I think.

Quoting cargotanker (Reply 12):
Does this mean that the CO of the Blue Angels found their standard airshow profile a bit stale and boring and tried to spice it up by going lower?

I doubt this is the case. More than likely loss of situational awareness, poor planning, and/or poor leadership.

I commend the CO for not only realizing, but accepting the responsibility for the teams performance.



Phrogs Phorever
User currently offlinechuchoteur From France, joined Sep 2006, 763 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (3 years 3 months 2 days 12 hours ago) and read 6154 times:

Quoting cargotanker (Reply 12):
I looked at the Lynchburg airshow on you tube and the manuever didn't look significantly abnormal, especially considering the Blue Angels, as I recall, seem to fly very low during their shows (there are numerous pictures on this site of the Blues flying less than 50 feet).

... I guess it really depends on the flight profile and trajectory as the low level passes are either straight 'n level or in a turn with the crowd on the inside of the turning circle.

In Europe, most of those "low passes" are not allowed (due to local regulations) which is a shame as I believe that if they are performed correctly, they are quite safe. The thunderbirds "sneak pass" is a typical example of a low-down (and safe) manoeuvre...


User currently offlineZANL188 From United States of America, joined Oct 2006, 3520 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (3 years 3 months 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 6125 times:
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Quoting dragon6172 (Reply 13):
I commend the CO for not only realizing, but accepting the responsibility for the teams performance.

I understand the post show private debriefings can be brutal & the CO would certainly not be immune. His team probably laid it out for him, left him no choice but to resign particularly if their were prior incidents.



Legal considerations provided by: Dewey, Cheatum, and Howe
User currently offlinestealthz From Australia, joined Feb 2005, 5692 posts, RR: 44
Reply 16, posted (3 years 3 months 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 5808 times:
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Quoting ZANL188 (Reply 15):
left him no choice but to resign particularly if their were prior incidents.

Am glad this happened in time to prevent even greater errors of judgement

The husband of one of my mother's best friends sadly lost his life in one of those multiple impacts when a leader, most likely, not up to the job led his team (RAAF Red Sales) into an almost perfect formation impact..

Quote:
....The Red Sales team was practising for a RAAF Open Day Display on the 16th September 1962.
The four aircraft struck the ground almost simultaneously in the final stages of completing a low level barrel roll. They crashed in close proximity to each other in a shallow dive and at an estimated speed of over 300 kts.....

.....However, the weight of evidence indicated that the accident occurred as a result of an error of judgment, or faulty technique on the part of the leader.



If your camera sends text messages, that could explain why your photos are rubbish!
User currently onlineJoeCanuck From Canada, joined Dec 2005, 5435 posts, RR: 30
Reply 17, posted (3 years 3 months 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 5708 times:

He took the hit and fell on his sword for the greater good. Regardless of his air show skills, you can't question his sense of duty.


What the...?
User currently offlineplanespotting From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 3527 posts, RR: 5
Reply 18, posted (3 years 3 months 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 5681 times:

Quoting ZANL188 (Reply 15):
Quoting dragon6172 (Reply 13):
I commend the CO for not only realizing, but accepting the responsibility for the teams performance.

I understand the post show private debriefings can be brutal & the CO would certainly not be immune. His team probably laid it out for him, left him no choice but to resign particularly if their were prior incidents.

Nonetheless, this is a much better outcome than some of the other events mentioned above. Kudos to the professionalism of the entire team.

I'll actually be at their first airshow performance back up to full speed - the Quad City Airshow on Saturday, June 18.

Looking forward to it.



Do you like movies about gladiators?
User currently offlinecanoecarrier From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 2839 posts, RR: 12
Reply 19, posted (3 years 3 months 23 hours ago) and read 5610 times:

Quoting ebj1248650 (Reply 8):
According to his statement, this is not the first time the standards have not been met. What's not clear is whether he was remiss more than once or if other team members have been in error and could not be reigned in. His statement points to his having pushed the limits on the occassion of the low altitude manuever and it was too noticeable. As for the altimeter not being set properly, I suppose that could be a contributing factor but his statement doesn't point to that.
Quoting ZANL188 (Reply 15):
I understand the post show private debriefings can be brutal & the CO would certainly not be immune. His team probably laid it out for him, left him no choice but to resign particularly if their were prior incidents.

Personally, I think this is a sign of something good in the navy. He saw he wasn't living up to the standards expected of him and that he was just as accountable as any of the other people he led. In the end he took the ethical position, grounding himself and asking for immediate relief from duty.

Quoting JoeCanuck (Reply 17):
He took the hit and fell on his sword for the greater good. Regardless of his air show skills, you can't question his sense of duty.

  



The beatings will continue until morale improves
User currently offlineB727LVR From United States of America, joined Jul 2008, 630 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (3 years 3 months 15 hours ago) and read 5547 times:

I agree with others, I think there is more to this situation than what we are seein/being told. I commend the Skipper for owning up the mistakes, since he is the one that overall responsible for the saftey of his command. I hope in his doing this he saved his career. He could end up being a great squadron CO, the demands of a Demonstration Team CO may not have suited his leadership style. I am glad there was no one hurt in these "mistakes."

Quoting JoeCanuck (Reply 5):
Quoting nomadd22 (Reply 4):
I imagine standards got tightened up some after they lost a C-17 because of a pilot blatantly ignoring minimum safety protocols. Airshows aren't a license to be reckless.


I hope so...the only ones who get a kick out of breaking regs at a show, are hot shots. The folks on the ground don't notice...so why do it?

Inadvertent is one thing...busting regs for kicks is idiotic.

Agreed, the fans want to see loud jets going fast and being loud, or a big plane being agile. The would never know if what they were seeing was over the limits or not.

And I know it wasnt meant this way, but the Navy doesn't have C-17's that's the Air Force. Just so some don't get confused  



I'm like a kid in a candy store when it comes to planes!
User currently offlineebj1248650 From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 1932 posts, RR: 1
Reply 21, posted (3 years 2 months 4 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 5322 times:

Quoting calpilot (Reply 9):
The crash of the 1982 Diamond in the "Line Abreast Loop" was attributed to a major malfunction in the Bosses aircraft.

NOT! a miss set altimeter.

This story has been around for a long time; found it on the internet. Whether it's made up is for the reader to determine, but there has been a controversy about the crash.

"The accident report was very controversial. As the only TAC unit other
than the 'Birds flying the T-38, the 479th TFW at Holloman was tasked
to supply both the Flying Safety Officer member and Pilot member to
the accident investigation board. Both pilots were out of my unit, the
435th TFTS.

The initial report of the board was a finding of pilot error. The lead
aircraft had topped out on the loop at an altitude below the minimum
required to insure a safe recovery. Failure to recognize the altitude
and continuation of the maneuver to the pull through meant that after
reaching about 60 degrees nose low inverted, the formation was in a
position from which recovery was no longer possible.

There was evidence reported that the control stick and linkages were
deformed probably due to pilot effort to pull through at whatever G
was available.

When the report was submitted, General Creech returned it and
reconvened the board with the statement that "Thunderbirds do not
commit pilot errors." Command guidance was to come up with another
cause.

That was when the "shock absorber" was invented as the culprit. What
made the report a laughingstock for T-38 pilots (although acceptable
to Gen. Creech and the general public) was the fact that with 160
AT-38B aircraft on the ramp at Holloman, with at least 1000
maintainers and more than 200 Talon IPs on the base and with more than
20 years experience operating the airplane for the USAF, no one had
ever before heard of the "shock absorber" and no one could find any
reference to such a gadget in the control system schematics."


Ed Rasimus *** Peak Computing Magazine
Fighter Pilot (ret) *** (http://peak-computing.com)
*** Ziff-Davis Interactive
*** (http://www.zdnet.com)



Dare to dream; dream big!
User currently offlinebroke From United States of America, joined Apr 2002, 1322 posts, RR: 3
Reply 22, posted (3 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 5001 times:

Quite often, the best person for the job is the one who made a major error but came through it OK. If they are introspective at all, they will better be able to make corrective actions and not make the same error again. The "One Screw Up and You're Gone Attitude" is more likely to result in either timidity by others or a more serious incident that could have been avoided.

User currently offlineebj1248650 From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 1932 posts, RR: 1
Reply 23, posted (3 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 4953 times:

Quoting broke (Reply 22):
Quite often, the best person for the job is the one who made a major error but came through it OK. If they are introspective at all, they will better be able to make corrective actions and not make the same error again. The "One Screw Up and You're Gone Attitude" is more likely to result in either timidity by others or a more serious incident that could have been avoided.

Very valid point ... and it applies in business as well as in the military.



Dare to dream; dream big!
User currently offlinerfields5421 From United States of America, joined Jul 2007, 7607 posts, RR: 32
Reply 24, posted (3 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 4879 times:

Quoting canoecarrier (Reply 19):
Personally, I think this is a sign of something good in the navy. He saw he wasn't living up to the standards expected of him and that he was just as accountable as any of the other people he led. In the end he took the ethical position, grounding himself and asking for immediate relief from duty.

While I agree with your basic sentiment - it is a sign of something good in the Navy

He didn't ground himself and didn't ask for relief. He was given an option of how he would leave the job, gracefully, or in disgrace. Apparently some 'deficiencies' in his leadership had been noted before the particular incident. He chose the more honorable option in my opinion.

My sources still on active duty tell me there was a very high probability of the entire Blue Angels season being cancelled. It is still a possibility, and there might be as many as three pilots leaving the Blue Angels at the end of this season - before their normal rotations.

Now what I have posted above is not part of the public record, only information from people I trust still on active duty and in places where my experience leads me to believe their information is accurate.

You are quite welcome to dismiss it completely if you choose.


User currently offlinecaptainstefan From United States of America, joined May 2007, 426 posts, RR: 0
Reply 25, posted (3 years 2 months 3 weeks 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 4472 times:

Quoting ebj1248650 (Reply 8):
According to his statement, this is not the first time the standards have not been met. What's not clear is whether he was remiss more than once or if other team members have been in error and could not be reigned in.

I know it was early in the season, but their performances at the Sun 'n Fun show in early April were pretty sub-par by Blue Angels standards. Having seen their show 30+ times over the past few years, I could tell that things were amiss (especially on Friday, when they performed the line abreast loop twice... practice day yes, but I've never seen that happen). Several times you could hear via scanner the profanity that indicated an improperly executed maneuver. Sure that probably happens in almost every show, but it seemed a bit more than would be expected out of the USN's top airplane drivers.

Having said that, I know that the Blues are the best of the best and their commander especially would tolerate nothing less than the best out of himself and his crew. So, be this his decision or a decision made for him behind closed doors, I respect and admire it and just hope they can get back on the show circuit (safely and) soon.



Long Live the Tulip!
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