Mr Spaceman From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 2786 posts, RR: 9 Posted (10 years 2 months 1 week 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 2663 times:
I've often wondered about the Emergency Procedures that airline pilots are trained to follow in the unfortunate event of an Off-Airport forced approach into a field or forest, etc.
I specifically would like to learn about any procedures that are used to help ensure that the flight crew can escape from the cockpit after a forced landing, incase the cockpit area is comprimised /crushed.
The only thing I can think of (off the top of my head) that airline pilots can do if a crash landing is iminent - to make sure they have a better chance of getting out of their cockpit if it's damaged - is to open the cockpit's side windows (if possible) at the last moment prior to impact.
Do airline pilots train to open their cockpit windows prior to an Off-Airport forced approach?
During my PPL "Forced Approaches" training, I was taught to open the doors on the Cessna 152 and try to jam something into the hinge area (like a clipboard) prior to landing to help keep the doors open during touchdown incase the doors got crushed into the fuselage and were stuck closed. This is not a good thing, especially if you're on fire after impact. I was also told to cross my legs if I was going down into a forest to help prevent any branches that might penetrate the cockpit floor from injuring me - you know where!
Are airline pilots trained to cross their legs too?
Mr Spaceman From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 2786 posts, RR: 9 Reply 1, posted (10 years 2 months 1 week 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 2632 times:
If the pilots of a Canadair Regional Jet lost both engines and were forced to land many miles short of an airport into a field, forest, desert or onto a road, etc, after shuting off their fuel, electrics, etc, and completing the emergency checklist, would they open their escape hatch (located above their heads) a few moments before touchdown to help ensure their ability to get out incase the landing turns into a bad wreck?
B747skipper From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 2, posted (10 years 2 months 1 week 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 2632 times:
In the 747, we do not have sliding windows, which could be opened.
We have a hatch, above the cockpit which can be opened.
From the upper deck we have escape slides through one (or two doors).
We also have escape inertia reels which can be used through doors or hatch.
The 747 cargo planes do not have cockpit doors.
On passenger planes, we have to assist passenger evacuation from cabin.
The cockpit crew is last to leave the aircraft (company policy).
Procedures for ditching and emergency landings on land areas are different.
I dont know how I would cross my legs with the control column...
This gives you a general idea...
Happy contrails -
Mr Spaceman From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 2786 posts, RR: 9 Reply 3, posted (10 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 2540 times:
Ok, so you can't open any of your windows, but you do have an escape hatch. From the photos below, it appears that the 747's cockpit hatch is located only on the port side of the ceiling, behind the captain's seat.
Question: B747skipper, If [you] had to make an off-airport forced landing, does your Emergency Checklist require the upper hatch to be opened before touchdown, perhaps by the flight engineer?
On July 19, 1989 at 16:00 hours a United Airlines DC-10 (flight 232-N1819U) crashed while attempting to land in Sioux City, Iowa after a catastrophic failure of the No. 2 (rear) engine. Of the 298 passengers aboard, 111 died.
Catastrophic failure of the No. 2 (rear) engine while en route from Denver to Chicago, with total loss of all three hydraulic systems due to damage. The aircraft maneuvering with only the thrust of the engines, crashed while attempting to land at Sioux City. Failure to detect a fatigue crack in the No. 2 engine resulting in the disintegration of the fan disk and loss of all three hydraulic systems. Subject of the 1992 TV-movie "Crash Landing: The Rescue of Flight 232."
The pilots of United 232 were trapped in their cockpit for well over a half hour, so they couldn't help the passengers. Do DC-10's have a cockpit hatch?
Mr Spaceman From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 2786 posts, RR: 9 Reply 4, posted (10 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 2506 times:
> B747skipper, I had to cut my last post short.
Anyhow, the main reason why I started this topic is because of the fact that the flight crew of United Airlines 232 (CA, FO, FE, and a dead-heading pilot in the jumpseat who controlled the throttles during the approach), were all trapped in their mangled cockpit after their DC-10 broke apart during the landing. They were trapped for a long time before rescue crews heard the pilots calling out for help. I think the rescue crews didn't think anyone could have survived in the cockpit because of it's "badly"damaged condition, so they didn't search it that good for the crew.
United 232's pilots were obviously performing a forced approach under very serious circumstances (no flight controls), so would they have opened their windows and hatch prior to touchdown .... if they could? I honestly don't know if an opened hatch would of helped this crew to get out of the cockpit. I think they were all pined down by wreckage.
I remember a few years ago, seeing a flight crew on TV escaping through the cockpit windows or hatch (or both) of their jet airliner (I forget what type) while on the ground during a highjacking. (so much for being the last to leave the aircraft under company policy - just kidding ) They were using ropes I believe to lower themselves.
Do the escape inertia reels that you mentioned use rope?
B747skipper From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 5, posted (10 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 2508 times:
Hola, Mr.Spaceman -
The escape hatch is located as you describe, I personally would say that it is "behind" the F/E's seat... - No, we would not open it for an emergency landing (unless other reasons)... i.e., rather have all closed, in case of fire outside around the aircraft...
Flight crews and cabin crews are trained to - emergency situation - check outside through window(s) for fire - or conditions before opening door - do not open door if there is a fire outside - redirect passengers to other exit.
For certification of aircraft by the FAA, they permit a brake and tyres fire to burn for 90 seconds (without fire fighting action) to burn for 90 seconds and must not affect "survivability" conditions inside cabin... they did that for the 747 certification, at the end of the "aborted takeoff test" when all brakes and wheels were on fire...
I do not recall what the widows and escape hatch configuration for DC-10. Certainly a friend will bring us that info. I know the L-1011 had a hatch...
Mr Spaceman From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 2786 posts, RR: 9 Reply 6, posted (10 years 2 months 1 week 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 2445 times:
Thank You for your replies.
I've learned from you that there aren't many similarities between "Emergency" procedure during & after a forced approach between a small GA aircraft and a large airliner. I guess I really shouldn't be surprised.
In a small Cessna, as PIC, after a forced landing in a field or on rugged terrain, the first thing I'd want to do is get out & away from the airplane as soon as possible incase it was on fire and about to explode! I understand now that the Captain of an airliner has different procedures & priorities.
The L-1011 has 1 escape hatch above the cockpit as you mentioned.
If the flight crew of a CRJ does open their escape hatch prior to a forced landing, then I guess it's safe to say that the hinge is located along the forward part of the hatch door, otherwise the blast of wind from the slipstream could rip it off and cause it to damage the tail surfaces. That wouldn't be good! (CRJ pilots probably don't open it though for the same reasons that a 747 pilot won't - incase of fire outside around the aircraft).
PS, B747skipper, I can't remember exactly how long you've been flying for Aerolineas Argentinas (I believe it's been close to 15 years for you with them), but, I thought you might know the two men in this photo that are inspecting the engine damage. Do you? I think it would be kinda neat if you did.
B747skipper From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 7, posted (10 years 2 months 1 week 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 2427 times:
I joined Aerolineas in OCT 1993, exactly 10 years ago.
Yes I know the captain, the gentleman on the right... he is retired now. As a matter of fact he lives in Pompano Beach, FL. I last visited him some 5 years ago, as I was often in the Miami area where we did simulator training.
Number of procedures are "different" with emergencies in lightplanes and airliners, to prepare for a crash landing, or a ditching. I once met a "ferry pilot" who flew airplanes for delivery all over the world, who once ditched a single engine at sea not far from Hawaii... he mentioned that he did put a shoe in the door so as not be stuck inside the aircraft. By the way, his nickname (since then) became "Sharkbait"...
Happy contrails -