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Tornadoes And Commercial Flight

Sat Mar 09, 2002 1:29 am

I have heard of flights 30,000 ft up that were in the vicinity of tornadoes down below. They report strange objects that are airborne: i.e. tires, pots and pans, etc. Anyone else able to confirm this?
II Cor. 4:17-18
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Joined: Sat Sep 04, 1999 3:15 am

RE: Tornadoes And Commercial Flight

Sat Mar 09, 2002 1:42 am

LOL! That's a good one...during tornadoes, practically everything in their paths is airborne, from houses, to cars, to parked aircraft... I can imagine flying pots, pans and tires would be the LEAST of the worries posed by a tornado-generating storm. Most aircraft cut them a wide path.

I was watching a special on severe weather yesterday; after F5 tornadoes, the strongest possible so far, objects like checkbooks, dishes and lighter things have been found as much as 100 miles away, having been carried by the wind above the storm.
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RE: Tornadoes And Commercial Flight

Sat Mar 09, 2002 4:03 am

Debris at 30,000'? Hmmm....
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RE: Tornadoes And Commercial Flight

Sat Mar 09, 2002 4:12 am

I believe that back in the old prop days, at least 1 commercial flight was lost after flying over a tornado.
Could be mistaken, though.

Ghosts appear and fade away.....................
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RE: Tornadoes And Commercial Flight

Sat Mar 09, 2002 4:14 am

I think on Ozark FH227 crashed on approach to STL after flying thru a possible funnel cloud..OUCH!!!
Samurai 777
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RE: Tornadoes And Commercial Flight

Sat Mar 09, 2002 4:20 am

I don't know about large objects like cars having thrown up that high into a supercell by a tornado, but it might be possibile particularly if the tornado was a large and very powerful one, say, about at least F5.

A stormchaser (I think it was Gene Moore) once said in his website that a tornado he observed had a car come flying out of the side of its parent storm at 15,000 feet.

Tornado-generating storms can still be be extremely dangerous for any commercial flight even if they don't drop a tornado. They are also known as supercells because they can last much longer than ordinary thunderstorms, often up to several hours. They're known to reach up to 60,000 - 65,000 ft. (one over Brisbane, Australia went up to 77,000 ft.) Which is amazing, considering that most commercial flights do not go above FL 410 - 430!

Supercells also generate hail up to the size of grapefruit, which'd be very damaging ,esp. to engines and cockpit windows. And they can produce some incredible lightning. Last, but not least of all, are microbursts, which are powerful blasts of cooler air that come rushing from above at speeds up to 100 mph (94 km/h) or more. Microbursts (also known as windshears) have been known to cause serious airplane crashes, like the Delta L-1011 which crashed during a thunderstorm in DFW in the late '70s. (damn, can't remember the date right now) They are highly dangerous, as they can be invisible to the naked eye. This is why aircraft today are equipped with windshear warning radar, which detects small debris and dust being whipped about by microbursts.

All in all, Ilyushin96M's right. Flying pot, pans and tires are the least of pilot's concerns where supercells exist.
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RE: Tornadoes And Commercial Flight

Sat Mar 09, 2002 6:41 am

1985 is when that Delta Tristar crashed in DFW because of the microburst.
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RE: Tornadoes And Commercial Flight

Sat Mar 09, 2002 11:47 am

That Ozark FH-227B crash was OZ's only fatal accident.
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RE: Tornadoes And Commercial Flight

Sat Mar 09, 2002 12:03 pm

Look what happend to Dorthy!!!
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RE: Tornadoes And Commercial Flight

Sat Mar 09, 2002 1:36 pm

Over tornado alley (the Central US) it can be a problem. Especially over the states with the most tornadoes of anyplace on earth....Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas in order. Nebraska is a close 4th.
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RE: Tornadoes And Commercial Flight

Sun Mar 10, 2002 4:29 am

I remember once we were intercepting the localizer for an approach to MEM and the controller sent us off to a hold fix as "a tornado is currently on the active". We didn't see it, but strangely enough the air was very smooth. About 5 minutes later we resumed our approach without incident.
Fly North Central Airlines..The route of the Northliners!

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