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Flying Over A Lake In A Small Airplane  
User currently offlineKingAirMan From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 291 posts, RR: 0
Posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 10325 times:

what is required to fly over a lake in a single engine airplane ? VFR and or IFR

49 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21677 posts, RR: 55
Reply 1, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 10328 times:

Either you have FAA-approved flotation devices onboard or you have to say within gliding distance of land.

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently offlineKFLLCFII From United States of America, joined Sep 2004, 3303 posts, RR: 30
Reply 2, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 10313 times:

Quoting Mir (Reply 1):
Either you have FAA-approved flotation devices onboard or you have to say within gliding distance of land.

You're almost there.


Title 14: Aeronautics and Space

PART 91—GENERAL OPERATING AND FLIGHT RULES

§ 91.205 Powered civil aircraft with standard category U.S. airworthiness certificates: Instrument and equipment requirements.

(b) Visual-flight rules (day). For VFR flight during the day, the following instruments and equipment are required:

(12) If the aircraft is operated for hire over water and beyond power-off gliding distance from shore, approved flotation gear readily available to each occupant and, unless the aircraft is operating under part 121 of this subchapter, at least one pyrotechnic signaling device. As used in this section, “shore” means that area of the land adjacent to the water which is above the high water mark and excludes land areas which are intermittently under water.


This also applies to VFR Night, IFR Day, and IFR Night flight.



"About the only way to look at it, just a pity you are not POTUS KFLLCFII, seems as if we would all be better off."
User currently offlineSkyexRamper From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 10266 times:

A simple response you'll get from most pilots: If it doesn't burn Jet-A then no way am I flying over it. Unless you're talking about a lake that is only 1-2 miles across and you're a few 1000 feet over it. But as for large bodies of water like the great lakes, you'd be stupid to fly a single piston over it. But I see many people who do.

User currently offlineBaron95 From United States of America, joined May 2006, 1335 posts, RR: 8
Reply 4, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 10246 times:

Quoting SkyexRamper (Reply 3):
A simple response you'll get from most pilots: If it doesn't burn Jet-A then no way am I flying over it. Unless you're talking about a lake that is only 1-2 miles across and you're a few 1000 feet over it. But as for large bodies of water like the great lakes, you'd be stupid to fly a single piston over it. But I see many people who do.

Really? I don't know any pilots that would give their answer. Every summer day in the US thousands of pilots fly single-engine aircraft over large bodies of water. Where I live, they fly from CT/NJ/RI/MA to Block Island, Long Island, Martha's Vineyard, etc. In the great lakes they fly to dozens of airports on small islands and on shore.

Flying single-engine piston aircraft (by far the most common aircraft type), is a managed risk activity, just like skiing, skydiving, single-pilot IFR flying on twin-engine airplanes,etc.

On a typical year, there are NO FATALITIES associated with ditching a single engine airplane due to engine mechanical failure.

So, please get your facts right, before you attribute words to "most pilots".

To answer the OP. You don't need anything that you wouldn't need on any other flight. Just make sure the plane is airworthy, properly maintained, sufficinetly fueled, and that the pilot is properly rated and current to operate the plane, and has a through weather briefing and studied all pertinent information for the flight.

That is all.



Killer Fleet: E190, 737-900ER, 777-300ER
User currently offlineKELPkid From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 6407 posts, RR: 3
Reply 5, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 10224 times:

Quoting Baron95 (Reply 4):
On a typical year, there are NO FATALITIES associated with ditching a single engine airplane due to engine mechanical failure.

Not to say that it doesn't happen (within the past couple of years, I can recall a guy who was ferrying a PAC Fletcher from New Zealand going into the drink off of the coast of California), but this is generally a risk that not many single engine pilots feel comfortable taking.

I remember shooting the VOR approach at HQM (Hoquiam, Washington) when I was getting my instrument rating. My instructor asked me to momentarily flip up my Foggles...we were just about to turn inbound on the procedure turn, and were at 800 feet, probably about 3-4 miles from shore over the Pacific. He then proceeded to ask me what would happen were the engine to conk out right there. He then reminded me that, technically, flight instruction is a for-hire operation, and to please be a little more careful with my flight planning and/or execution next time around  Wink



Celebrating the birth of KELPkidJR on August 5, 2009 :-)
User currently offlineBaron95 From United States of America, joined May 2006, 1335 posts, RR: 8
Reply 6, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 10204 times:

Quoting KELPkid (Reply 5):
a PAC Fletcher from New Zealand going into the drink off of the coast of California),

Due to fuel starvation, not mechanical failure. The result would have been the same if he was ferrying a 747 and ran out of fuel.

Quoting KELPkid (Reply 5):
He then reminded me that, technically, flight instruction is a for-hire operation,

No it is not. Flight instruction is not "for hire" operation. I don't understand your flight instructor's comments. Was he implying that you violated any FARs? If so, he knowingly allowed you to fly in violation of an FAR, and the violation would go on his reccord.

Many, many airports are on or very near shore. Many, many have Inst app procedures with long overwater segments are low altitude.

Again, single engine mechanical engine failure is not even a blip on the radar as why pilots get killed on instrument approaches flying over water. You need to eliminate a lot more riskis, before you even start worrying about that one.



Killer Fleet: E190, 737-900ER, 777-300ER
User currently offlineSkyexRamper From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 7, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 10042 times:

Quoting Baron95 (Reply 4):
So, please get your facts right, before you attribute words to "most pilots".

We obviously don't chat with the same pilots and as I pilot myself would never fly over a large body of water with a piston single. I'd rather take the longer route and not chance it.


User currently offlineAirTran737 From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 3704 posts, RR: 12
Reply 8, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 10038 times:
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Quoting SkyexRamper (Reply 7):
We obviously don't chat with the same pilots and as I pilot myself would never fly over a large body of water with a piston single. I'd rather take the longer route and not chance it.

I took the 172 from C89 to GRR not too long ago. I was going to cut right over Lake Michigan, but got a bit scared. Airplanes make weird noises when you're flying at night over a large body of water. I chose to skirt the shoreline, cut down to Chicago, then to GYY and on up to GRR. It took a lot longer then I wanted to, but I'd rather be safe then drop into Lake Michigan on a nice October night when the water temp is about 50 degrees and it takes hypothermia about 10 minutes to set in.

Would I cross the Lake? Hell yes. On a nice sunny day.



Nice Trip Report!!! Great Pics, thanks for posting!!!! B747Forever
User currently offlineFalstaff From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 6122 posts, RR: 29
Reply 9, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 9987 times:
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I see small planes take off and land out of Grosse Ile, Michigan, ONZ, all the time. ONZ is on an island in the Detroit River. Sometimes the planes are heading to/from the direction of Lake Erie.


My mug slaketh over on Falstaff N503
User currently offlineRobertS975 From United States of America, joined Aug 2005, 945 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 9905 times:
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If I was in a C172 that suffered an engine failure, ditching it along the shore line of a lake would be one of the better options... better than treetops or rough terrain for sure.

User currently offlineFerrypilot From New Zealand, joined Sep 2006, 897 posts, RR: 3
Reply 11, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 9802 times:

It's all about rationalising the amount of personal risk "you" wish to take in aviation. ...After all aviation would be short of a hell of a lot of magnificent heroes if they had not been willing to embrace the risk of flying over cold water in single piston engine planes.
"Lindberg" might well have succombed to hypothermia if he had gone down almost at any point on his famous 1927 flight from New York to Paris, and I feel sure that he would have known as much. ...But it is interesting to note that during the 1930's and when he was rich and famous that he continued to fly single piston engine aircraft across the North Atlantic.


User currently offlineBaron95 From United States of America, joined May 2006, 1335 posts, RR: 8
Reply 12, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 9706 times:

Quoting SkyexRamper (Reply 7):
We obviously don't chat with the same pilots and as I pilot myself would never fly over a large body of water with a piston single. I'd rather take the longer route and not chance it.

Fair enough. May I inquiry what airport you part of the country you normally fly out of? It may be true for example that pilots from the plains fear water as pilotes from the east (where I live) fear the Rocky Mountains. It is a matter of familiarity.

Almost the ONLY destination that can justify a flight in a light fixed gear single engine plane vs driving, is one that flyes over a large body of water to an island or such.

For example from the CT coast to Martha's Vineyard (MVY) is a 45 min flight on most single engine airplanes. If you drive, it takes 5 hours (summer) to get to Hyanis Port than 2 hrs to wait for an cross to the Island by ferry. Plane = nice day trip. Car = 2 days minimu with a lot of driving time.

So if you (without looking at the statistics that say that the risk of a SE plane ditching for any other reason other than fuel mismanagement by the pilot is insignificant) choose not to fly over water, you are limiting the utility of the plane for transportation.

You should also know that Flight Service Stations have special programs for planes crossing large bodies of water. They have one for Long Island Sound, the great lakes, etc. You basically report start of cross, end of cross, etc and stay in radio contact. If the engine fail, Coast Gard is in the air in less than 5 min. In the summer, it should be nothing more than an energetic swim.

So take that for what its worth. The risks are not as big as you fear. Please do some research and see if you reconsider. If you ever want to fly to MVY, let me know. I'll take you on a twin and you'll see the line of SE planes coming in.



Killer Fleet: E190, 737-900ER, 777-300ER
User currently offline2H4 From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 8955 posts, RR: 60
Reply 13, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 9689 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
DATABASE EDITOR



I consider single-engine ops in hard IFR...particularly at night...a lot more risky than overwater routes during the warm months.

Overwater flights during the cold months, however....  cold 


2H4





Intentionally Left Blank
User currently offlineBaron95 From United States of America, joined May 2006, 1335 posts, RR: 8
Reply 14, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 9676 times:

Quoting 2H4 (Reply 13):
Overwater flights during the cold months, however....

Unless such boddy of water is frozen solid, right - then it could be fun - land anywhere.

By the way, I am assuming that this entire thread assumes a piston-single-engine-land plane right? The title of the thread mentions small airplane (which is a category that includes even a King Air C90 or B200 multi-engine turboprop). Not to mention, it covers sea planes and anphibiam airplanes that would have no problem landing (and staying afloat) on a lake.



Killer Fleet: E190, 737-900ER, 777-300ER
User currently offline2H4 From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 8955 posts, RR: 60
Reply 15, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 9669 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
DATABASE EDITOR



Just to be safe, I'm going to buy one of these:



 Wink


2H4





Intentionally Left Blank
User currently offlineRoseFlyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 9665 posts, RR: 52
Reply 16, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 9661 times:

Quoting SkyexRamper (Reply 3):
Unless you're talking about a lake that is only 1-2 miles across and you're a few 1000 feet over it. But as for large bodies of water like the great lakes, you'd be stupid to fly a single piston over it. But I see many people who do.

I have done a good amount of VFR flying in the Seattle area and fly over water constantly. I can't say that I'm a fan of the westbound VFR departure/arrival from Boeing Field since it involves flying over water for about 4 miles and you start out at only about 1,000ft and have a 3,000ft maximum altitude because of the Class B airspace of SEA.

A lot of pilots fly around over water and I have no problem with it if I am within gliding distance of water. I actually will intentionally fly over water rather than land since in the summer months, the air is smoother if you are at a lower altitude because there is less convection off of the ground. I always stay within gliding distance of land.



If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
User currently offlineFerrypilot From New Zealand, joined Sep 2006, 897 posts, RR: 3
Reply 17, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 9659 times:

I will tell you this for what it is worth. ..."I am absolutely bloody terrified of flying over cold water" ...Yet I have made 51 solo crossings of the North Atlantic in small single and twin piston engine planes. And I have painted a large part of this World on my memory, ...seen a thousand things that no jet pilot will ever see. "And it was worth the risk"

[Edited 2006-12-11 02:54:49]

User currently offlineSkyexRamper From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 18, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 9581 times:

Quoting AirTran737 (Reply 8):
I took the 172 from C89 to GRR

HEHE..I started a checkout there in that 172, but the cfi was a dick and a cowboy pilot.

Quoting Baron95 (Reply 12):
Fair enough. May I inquiry what airport you part of the country you normally fly out of?

I fly out of MWC, north end of Milwaukee County.

Quoting Baron95 (Reply 12):
So if you (without looking at the statistics that say that the risk of a SE plane ditching for any other reason other than fuel mismanagement by the pilot is insignificant) choose not to fly over water, you are limiting the utility of the plane for transportation.



Quoting Baron95 (Reply 12):
You basically report start of cross, end of cross, etc and stay in radio contact.



Quoting Baron95 (Reply 12):
it should be nothing more than an energetic swim.

With all that yes, true the straight line is gone but flying is still quicker than driving. Some people will take the chance but personally I'd never risk it. As for the swim...I'd never last with asthma, I have nothing for endurance in the water. Big grin


User currently offlineAirTran737 From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 3704 posts, RR: 12
Reply 19, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 9569 times:
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Quoting SkyexRamper (Reply 18):
HEHE..I started a checkout there in that 172, but the cfi was a dick and a cowboy pilot.

Did you fly with Christian?



Nice Trip Report!!! Great Pics, thanks for posting!!!! B747Forever
User currently offlineFerrypilot From New Zealand, joined Sep 2006, 897 posts, RR: 3
Reply 20, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 9564 times:

Ferry pilots often fly wearing there immersion suits.

User currently offlineATCT From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 2307 posts, RR: 38
Reply 21, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 9555 times:

Flying out to Put-in-Bay n such you cant help but flying over open water. Personally I dont like doing it at low altitudes. Ive done it (N766UA can attest) but I prefer to zip up and over at a higher altitude. With SEL's its not worth the risk to go out of gliding distance. Im also personally not a fan of SEL at night. Done it many times, but not a fan of it.

If youre gonna fly over open water (away from land) id make sure you got at minimum what the FAA requires or more, and make sure youre topped off w/ two engines.


ATCT



"The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing." - Walt Disney
User currently offlineFerrypilot From New Zealand, joined Sep 2006, 897 posts, RR: 3
Reply 22, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 9510 times:

There is always some risk in aviation. ...Even in the 747 there is at least one instance where all four engines flamed out in cruise.
The way I see it is if an airliner ever survives a ditching on cold water, then any passengers left alive will have to be rescued in minutes or they will suffer the same fate as most of those who sailed on the Titanic. You actually need to be wearing an immersion suit as a defence against hypothermia in most of the water on the planet. ...Curious then that airlines provide life jackets, but nothing to guard against cold water.


User currently offlineBaron95 From United States of America, joined May 2006, 1335 posts, RR: 8
Reply 23, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 22 hours ago) and read 9498 times:

Quoting Ferrypilot (Reply 20):
Ferry pilots often fly wearing there immersion suits.

In order to cross the Atlantic with any airplane that does not meet some "minimum capability/performance guarantees" you have to have special equipment aboard including but not limitted to to immersion suits that you have to keep on the whole time (at least up to your waist).

If flying from North America, your plane, flight plans, equipment has to be inspected by the Canadian CAA before you can launch.

As I said before, it is a managed risk activity. You managed the risk with risk mitigating procedures.



Killer Fleet: E190, 737-900ER, 777-300ER
User currently offlineN723GW From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 232 posts, RR: 0
Reply 24, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 22 hours ago) and read 9493 times:

I don't know excatly what the rules are, however, they are posted now, but personally would NEVER go across a large body of water i.e. Lake Michigan with out 2 engines, period. A while back, there was a guy in his early 20's I beleive that was flying across the lake to MKE, and had engine problems, crashed and drowned a few miles of the Wisconsin coast. When I was flying, once we got out about a mile over the lake due to being asked to in the pattern and I just turned around. People do in fact do it all the time, but I think they are stupid as hell. But, that's my opinion, and if people think they can handle themselves at 3000ft with no engine 25 miles out from the coast, more power to them.


The dude abides
25 2H4 : Not that I'd choose to do it again, but when I crossed Lake Michigan in a 172, the window of time in which a safe glide to one of the shorelines was
26 Ferrypilot : .............................................corrected below.......................................[Edited 2006-12-11 05:43:49]
27 Ferrypilot : So what do you think of all the military guys who are flying around in single engine fighters? ...Do you seriously think they stay within 25 miles of
28 SkyexRamper : Yes...and on top of that he just crapped on me, wasn't professional what so ever. He did the stupid thing, flying a Piper Cherokee into a 40kt headwi
29 Baron95 : And, if you checked the reason for the "engine problems" you'll find out 3 out of 4 times that it was due to fuel starvation or fuel mismanagement an
30 Beeweel15 : MIN-ETOPS
31 SkyexRamper : Yes..my life verse another $50 in flying cost...I'll take the scenic fly-by of Chicago any day.
32 Ferrypilot : There are many Air Force's in this World and I can assure you they dont all have tanker aircraft hanging around for them. Also military engines are o
33 Ferrypilot : The Baron is one of my all time favourite planes, ...and I have ferried four of them from Europe back to the USA.
34 Turnit56N : I've flown over the Great Lakes several times and done the Florida-Bahama flight a few times in singles. Like every thing in aviation, it's all about
35 Post contains images Baron95 :
36 N1120A : Um, why? Before jets, gasoline burning radials were de rigeur for crossing the pond and took a hell of a lot longer to do it too. Further, do you thi
37 Post contains links and images Ferrypilot : In November 2005 I ferried the actual aircraft below from Goose Bay in Canada via Greenland, Iceland and Scotland to it's new home at Bruntingthorpe
38 Post contains links and images Ferrypilot : First leg from Goose Bay in Canada to Narsarsuaq in Greenland is 676 nautical miles. Photo below of Narsarsuaq was taken by me from a Cirrus SR22 whil
39 SkyexRamper : This thread is about SINGLE ENGINE airplanes. I have no problem with flying a twin piston over water.
40 Sprout5199 : I have flown over Lake Okeechobee(about 25 miles wide) in a C-152. The only thing my CFI said to do was climb to 5000 feet so I could glide to shore i
41 Baron95 : My god, that is a great looking plane. Almost like a Baron with radial engines. Sweet. Thanks for posting the picture. What cruise speed did you get
42 Ferrypilot : I used approximately 160KTAS most of the time to conserve fuel. ...The 18 is about 10-15knots slower than a 58. Maybe because of extra drag from the
43 N1120A : You think a jet engine is more reliable than say a Porsche engine in a Mooney? Are you out of your mind? You said "if it isn't burning Jet A".
44 Threepoint : Great post - I decided to highlight this one comment to illustrate Baron95's remark about being familiar with your surroundings. I have the opposite
45 Bushpilot : I see this happen all the time in Alaska. Flying over some of the large lakes we have here like Iliamna, Clark, Aleknagik as well as over large inlets
46 FlyMatt2Bermud : Yesterday I flew to Nassau and back in a Cessna 210. I think the longest overwater distance was 50 nm. As a precaution, I had my family & friends don
47 Dw747400 : If that is what he is saying than most folks would agree with him. Sure you can find a crap jet, but in general turbines beat pistons hands down in r
48 SkyexRamper : Nope, not out of my mind...I'd take P&W C any day. Yes, most pilots I talk with wouldn't take a single piston over a large body of water but they'd h
49 Ferrypilot : An inexperienced pilot is a lot more likely to hurt himself with one of those turbine aircraft than he is with a piston engine aircraft. ...You have
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