tracon
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President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Wed Nov 24, 2004 4:59 pm

Apparently the aircraft crashed in calm weather conditions on its way to pick up Bush for a business meeting.

http://www.cnn.com/2004/US/11/23/texas.crash.ap/index.html

Your thoughts on this matter?

-Tracon
 
MxCtrlr
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Wed Nov 24, 2004 5:38 pm

Well, obviously he was low - he hit a 120 foot light pole, 3.25 miles from the runway! The question is why was he low? Mechanical problem? Pilot problem? Something else (pilot incapacitation, for example)? This statement sounds like the NTSB just giving out a sound bite to appease the media.

MxCtrlr  Smile/happy/getting dizzy
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tracon
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Wed Nov 24, 2004 5:53 pm

NTSB officials say the final report could take a YEAR or more !! But i do agree with you. There are things not being told.
 
studentflyer
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Wed Nov 24, 2004 11:27 pm

Although it's a sad thing to have happened, but it could be much worse if the president himself was on board. Gosh that would be scary! My thoughts, prayers and condolences to the crew on board, God be with them.
 
Okie
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Wed Nov 24, 2004 11:43 pm

It sounds to me like a bad case of "get there itis"
Without other details IMO probably the fact that the plane was to pick up an important passenger (Bush Sr.) may have led to self imposed pressure to "get there".
You would assume that with Wx conditions bad that normally the pilots would have flown to an alternate and waited for the Wx to improve.
Just my .02

Okie
 
jtamu97
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 12:51 am

There may have been a little pressure, but remember Bush was a former pilot and he of all people would understand if a plane could not land due to bad weather. I also doubt the schedule was so tight to get him to Ecuador that they could have not waited an hour or so. Either way, it will be interesting to see the final report when it comes out.
Propeller, we don't need no stinkin propeller
 
7LBAC111
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 1:02 am

Erm...you all do realise that it wasn't in fact the current President, and was GWB Snr who was mean't to fly on it - dont you???  Confused
Debate is what you put on de hook when you want to catch de fish.
 
Type-Rated
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 1:27 am

Okie:

Exactly my thoughts on this.

Another factor that will come out is the age of the pilots. The Captain was 67 and the F/O 62. The retirement age for airline pilots is 60, and there is a great debate going on to push the limit up to 62 or so. This incident will add fuel to that fire. I think the media just hasn't picked up on this yet.
Needless to say, both pilots were very well experienced and were certified to fly that plane in all weather conditions.
Fly North Central Airlines..The route of the Northliners!
 
spacecadet
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 1:45 am

NTSB officials say the final report could take a YEAR or more !! But i do agree with you. There are things not being told.

Dude, the accident just happened. Sheesh. People here act like every single little thing is some sort of massive government coverup. The NTSB has no impetus for withholding info on this. It takes time to pick over the wreckage noting where each little piece is, it takes time to conduct interviews with those involved (ATC, maintenance, etc.), it takes time to get the recorders back to the lab and have them analyzed (this process alone can take months). Then you've got to piece everything together, which can take several more months.

The ATC tapes would be the first definitive piece of evidence they'd have, that's all. It was obviously not damaged in the crash and the controller himself would be the first interview conducted because a) he's easy to identify and locate, and b) he's close to the scene. It's no shock that this is the first piece of info released.
I'm tired of being a wanna-be league bowler. I wanna be a league bowler!
 
BR715-A1-30
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 1:49 am

There is no such person as GWB Sr. There IS however, a GHWB Sr. George Herbert-Walker Bush... and then you have George W. Bush. (Walker)
Puhdiddle
 
7LBAC111
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 1:57 am

BR715-A1-30

Let's not split hairs!  Laugh out loud
Debate is what you put on de hook when you want to catch de fish.
 
studentflyer
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 1:58 am

Erm...you all do realise that it wasn't in fact the current President, and was GWB Snr who was mean't to fly on it - dont you???

Yes I did. But it would still cause some reaction if he was in that aircraft.
 
pilotpip
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 1:58 am

The reason it takes a YEAR or more is because there is a ton of evidence to sort through. This is made tougher because much of it is in very small pieces. The NTSB is very thourough and does a really good job when it comes to an accident investigation. While the pilots may have had get-there-itis the media always has "what went wrong itis". They wanted an answer as to why this happened five minutes before it actually happened. Kudos to the NTSB for doing their job properly and not speeding things up to please CNN.
DMI
 
c172heavy
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 3:12 am

Anyone know what the weather was like at the time of the crash? The news article doesn't really say, other than conditions will be examined. And that, I presume, is routine for any investigation.
"How's that working out for ya?....Bein' clever?"
 
KYIPpilot
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 3:19 am

I too think it was get-there-itis. I think the pilots may have felt pressured to not let Bush Sr. wait for an aircraft. Since it was foggy and low visibility, they may have decided to scud run in hopes of seeing the airport at a lower altitude so they would not have to go missed.
"It starts when you're always afraid; You step out of line, the man come and take you away" -Buffalo Springfield
 
tracon
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 3:20 am

News reports just say fog I believe.

TRACON
 
zvezda
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 4:08 am

Is 120' not on the tall side for a light-pole? (Obviously, I'm not blaming the crash on the placement of the light-pole.)
 
kindjordan
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 4:10 am

Lets say the pilots were in a rush to get there?....does this explain why the plane was at 150ft and clipping light poles insead of @ 1000ft where it was supposed be on final?.....What about the GWPS system in this aircraft?....if the plane was at 150ft why wouldn't the PIC know this....or be backed up by his first officer. What did his ALT gauges say, what kinda assistance did he get from ATC. There are many many questions surrounding this incident...and IMHO, I think its a bit premature to even make judgments about what really happened.....only time and a through investigation will tell, god bless the crew and their family's....-J
 
ClearedDirect
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 4:23 am

An amazing fact was that these pilots were extremely experienced (Both having around 19,000hrs). I cant imagine both of them not noticing that the aircraft was 600ft below glideslope. Additionally Bush Sr. mentioned that he had flew with them many times before so they must have been checked out in every conceivable way. It will be interesting nonetheless to hear what the NTSB has to say when they are finished.

Condolences to the victims and their family.
 
tracon
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 4:53 am

A kind soul took the initiative to research and send me the wx report at the time of the crash:

KHOU 221227Z 00000KT 1/8SM FG BKN001 OVC006 22/21 A3001 RMK AO2 SFC VIS 1/2

google for a METAR converter if you cant read that.

Hopefully that is accurate and will clear some things up!

TRACON
 
KYIPpilot
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 5:04 am

KHOU 221227Z 00000KT 1/8SM FG BKN001 OVC006 22/21 A3001 RMK AO2 SFC VIS 1/2

Basically it says; Houston Hobby visibility 1/8 statute mile, fog, clouds broken at 100 feet above ground, overcast at 600 feet AGL, temp 22C, dewpoint 21C.

does this explain why the plane was at 150ft and clipping light poles insead of @ 1000ft where it was supposed be on final?.....What about the GWPS system in this aircraft?....if the plane was at 150ft why wouldn't the PIC know this....or be backed up by his first officer.

I can almost guarentee that both of them knew, unless they were both incapacitated. Thats why I think that maybe they felt pressured to get there so they didn't make Bush Sr. wait, and were scud running. I am not saying this happened, but it sure makes sense to me. We will have to wait to see what the CVR and FDR say.
"It starts when you're always afraid; You step out of line, the man come and take you away" -Buffalo Springfield
 
kindjordan
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 6:23 am

In the past I have heard of crashes that involved the Capitan or FO nudging the yoke and inadvertently disengaging the planes autopilot. In most of those crashes the crew didn't realize the mistake untill it was too late. Is there a possibility of this being the cause of the crash?....I was thinking not though, as I'm sure the aircraft was being hand flown in on the approach. Im assuming there's no "autoland" on this plane??
 
qwerty
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 6:31 am

There IS however, a GHWB Sr.

Technically, I do not even think there is a Sr. or Jr. There's just two Georges.
 
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jumbojim747
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 6:45 am

Kindjordan
Im sure there is a audio alarm in the jet that if the auto pilot is accidentally disengaged it would alert the crew.
On a wing and a prayer
 
nonrvsmdmf
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 6:59 am

I live about a mile from where this happened and was on my
way to the office when it crashed. The weather was nasty
and foggy.

Two minutes before it went down they were warned they were
too low. They should have been at 1200' min when they
hit the pole. From what I know of this aircraft it does not
have a GPWS.

I guess we will see what comes out of the investigation.
I did not forget...I just misplaced the thought...
 
planespotting
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RE: SWA On-Time Arrivals

Thu Nov 25, 2004 7:24 am

What the hell is FG. Fog is listed in a METAR as "BR" (the mnemonic device is 'baby rain'')
Do you like movies about gladiators?
 
goboeing
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 7:33 am

Planespotting

What the hell is FG. Fog is listed in a METAR as "BR" (the mnemonic device is 'baby rain'')

FG is fog. BR is mist. I have not seen FG on as many METARs as I have BR, but I have always seen FZFG and never FZBR. I guess mist doesn't freeze.

http://www.avweb.com/weather/metarabv.html


Nick
 
planespotting
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RE: SWA On-Time Arrivals

Thu Nov 25, 2004 7:36 am

ohhh shit. thats right. im stupid. thankyou for the correction. It's been awhile since all of my written tests...
Do you like movies about gladiators?
 
Flyinround731
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 8:28 am

Is 120' not on the tall side for a light-pole? (Obviously, I'm not blaming the crash on the placement of the light-pole.)

Here in Houston, many of our freeways use high mast lighting poles, including the section of the Sam Houston Tollway where the plane crashed. In this photo below on I-45 North near IAH, the poles are a little lower since air traffic passes over I-45 pretty low.

U.S. 59 near IAH below, traffic passes EXTREMELY low over this strech of freeway


This photo below was taken on the Sam Houston Tollway near HOU, in fact, a few miles away from the crash site.

Notice the high mast lighting tower, that was the type clipped by the Gulfstream. They're pretty high. I would think that since the Sam Houston Tollway runs under the approach path to runway 4 so close to the airport, the engineers would place lower towers as they've done close to IAH on I-45 and U.S 59.
-Joe
 
APP
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 8:42 am

7LBAC111,
Shouldn't that be "Let's not split heirs" Big grin
APP.
 
MontanaFL
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 8:59 am

Qwerty - you are correct not a Sr nor a Jr - just two Georges.

I seriously doubt it was get thereitis - if so, maybe the crew just wanted to be on the ground. Was former Pres Bush waiting at the airport? Was the plane running late? As they were flying to South America, I doubt the crew would do a WN turnaround and head on to South America shortly after landing. As the president has Secret Service protection, I am sure that all three crew members were checked out thoroughly before being hired to fly the president down to South America. We will just have to wait and see what the NTSB has to say.

For my .02 - the crew may not have been paying attention to the flight instruments. My grandfather was a pilot for the FAA and he said that - in his opinion - most if not all a/c accidents were pilot error.
I miss those DL L-1011's
 
OPNLguy
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 10:05 am

>>>What the hell is FG. Fog is listed in a METAR as "BR" (the mnemonic device is 'baby rain'')

The threshold for reporting FG versus BR is at 1/2SM, and since they were at 1/8SM, that's why it was FG.

RVR was 1500 at the time...
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
citjet
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 10:53 am

Hi all,
I'm a new member and thought I'd contribute to the discussion. Does anyone remember the G-III crash in Aspen Colorado? I think that this recent crash in Texas probably has quite a bit of similarities concerning the circumstances leading to the event.
 
qwerty
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Thu Nov 25, 2004 11:45 pm


I'm a new member and thought I'd contribute to the discussion. Does anyone remember the G-III crash in Aspen Colorado?.


That was pilot error with bad weather if memory serves. One that day, I know at least NetJets was telling customers they could not go to Aspen, but they would take them to EGE.
 
LXJTEBGA
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Fri Nov 26, 2004 2:40 am

I was sad hearing about this crash the other day.....especially once I found out that it was 85VT....myself and other people I work with specifically remember this acft/crew as it had visited twice in October.

Yes it is true it was an older crew....but in corporate aviation there are tons of pilots over the 60 year mark who are still going strong....as long as they maintain their first class medical, who cares. Ive known many like this, they are well seasoned pros who have years upon years of real life experience....not just some simulated emergencies.

I am not sure about the operator and what their criteria are....but it appears to me they shouldn't have even been shooting an approach with the current conditions at that time....best to divert to an alternate such as IAH and wait for the fog to lift. Someone earlier mentioned ASE.....this is one of the most challenging airports out there....I know that within my company, our crews never gamble with safety and do not proceed with any approach they feel uncomfortable with, regardless of the negative repercussions.

Its tough when flying a private jet....the type of people who are pax are the ones who wanna get to where they are going, no matter what. Its a lot tougher on a bizjet pilot....the pax insist on doing what they want! Of course, these are the people who insisted they had to fly on 9/11....after the entire airspace was shut down.
 
fsuwxman
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Fri Nov 26, 2004 11:21 pm

Well, while we are splitting hairs here, the VIS where BR will be FG is 5/8 SM. That's according to our Weather Observer Bible, the FAA Order 7900.5b.

BR -> 7SM > VIS >= 5/8SM
FG -> 5/8SM > VIS
FZFG -> 5/8SM > VIS and T <= 0 deg C
FZBR -> No such coding...

MIFG, PRFG, BCFG (which I ran this morning  Big grin ) can be run at all VIS values.

The reason why many say that 1/2SM is the change point is that 5/8SM is not a reportable VIS value.
ASOS... Another Shi#y Observation Station
 
MD88Captain
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Sat Nov 27, 2004 12:03 am

Just on the bare facts, it could be a case of scud running. An attempt to get low enough to get to the airport. There won't be an official finding for a year, but it doesn't stop us from speculating. And while you'd think that a couple of 60+ year old pilots wouldn't make that mistake, I can definately see it happening. Sometimes with 19,000 hrs you think you can do anything. It can be about the same mindset as having 800hrs.
 
Type-Rated
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RE: President's Pilot Warned Before Crash

Sat Nov 27, 2004 9:53 am

I think it's called complacency.
Fly North Central Airlines..The route of the Northliners!

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