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Air Tractor AT802 Across The N.Atlantic?!

Sat Dec 18, 2004 9:41 pm

Hi folks,

I thought that this must have been an error but everything I can see suggests the flight was real.

Noticed on the LPHR (Horta Faial, Portugal) departures screen yesterday was 'CGJJX' destined for Gander.

C-GJJX is an Air Tractor AT-802 cn 802-0121, owned by Forest Protection Limited, Fredericton, Lincoln, New Brunswick in Canada.

Sure enough, Gander's arrivals on the flight-tracker showed it as being due in yesterday and today it's showing as having departed at 1220z today for Fredericton CYFC.


Rob K  Smile
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RE: Air Tractor AT802 Across The N.Atlantic?!

Sat Dec 18, 2004 11:10 pm

Lots and Lots of ferry tanks maybe or some intermediate stops that weren't listed. (Iceland, Greenland, Lajes Field????)
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RE: Air Tractor AT802 Across The N.Atlantic?!

Sat Dec 18, 2004 11:18 pm

There is a nice book called Ocean Flying, written by a female ocean ferry pilot, who frequently ferried single engine a/c across the Ocean. There are lots of nice stories in it.

One surprising remark was she was often more confident flying single engine a/c across the Atlantic than twin-engine a/c. Her observation was that most of the light twins she ferried could not maintain altitude with one engine out and a heavy oceanic full load -- so the 2nd engine was not actually much of an extra safety benefit. She also observed (though admitted she did not have scientific evidence) that the twin engine aircraft seemed to have so many more engine problems. (Certainly training twins tend to have more engine problems due to the amount of time engines are abused doing engine failure training perhaps.)

She has a bunce of nice stories in the book. She recounts how a friend of hers accompanied her on a trip. He was a 30,000 hour 747 captain - however he was unable to fly a real plane. He was unable to concentrate on flying a course straight and level for more than a few minutes as he'd spent so long flying autopilots. On several occasions she discovered they were as much as 90 degrees of their required course.

There is lots in the book about preparation for a ocean single engine flight - HF radios, nav equipment, exposure suits, emergency beacons, food, toilet etc. I recall Transport Canada has some staff in Goose Bay that check out a/c intending single engine transatlantic flight. They regularly have pilots arrive from US and Canada intending single engine crossing without the vaguest idea of the suitable level of equipment to ensure their safety.

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RE: Air Tractor AT802 Across The N.Atlantic?!

Sat Dec 18, 2004 11:35 pm

I was waiting for an appropriate time to make my first post on a-net and it looks like I found it. As an Air Tractor pilot myself, I can tell you that this ferry is pretty routine-if you could call it that! AT 802's are available with a ferry kit, which enables you to fill the water tank-or Hopper- up with fuel, thus giving you an additional 800gal of fuel. Add this to the standard fuel tank size of 336us gal- gives you some serious fuel capacity for a single engine aeroplane. An AT 802 burns approx. 75-85us gal per hour at a ferry speed of 200mph- so it gives you a pretty good range as well.

Hope this helps.
PS. they also ferry Ag-planes to Australia and New Zealand!
I love the smell of jet fuel in the morning.
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RE: Air Tractor AT802 Across The N.Atlantic?!

Sat Dec 18, 2004 11:40 pm

Excellent! That clears it up then!

Btw, welcome to AT502b !  Big grin


Rob K  Smile
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RE: Air Tractor AT802 Across The N.Atlantic?!

Sun Dec 19, 2004 7:04 am

there is a true story (and a movie which was made) about an Air Tractor ferry pilot flying across the Pacific who got lost. . . And an Air NZ 767 flight (via radio and various tricks) managed to locate him and guide him to NZ after several hrs.

An interesting story. . . with a happy ending. . .

perhaps the A-nutters know the details fo this event.
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RE: Air Tractor AT802 Across The N.Atlantic?!

Sun Dec 19, 2004 7:13 am

With regards to the NZ flight, I think in the real incident it was a DC-10 which guided the pilot in. Excellent film though and I'd love to see it again  Smile

AT502b - Welcome to A.NET  Smile

I would have thought that there were a lot of people wanting to fly their lights over the pond from the US & Canada, I wonder how many head out from Europe (is that even possible now given winds) unless one goes through Iceland.

Lifes a train racing towards you, now you can either run away or grab a chair & a beer and watch it come - Phil
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RE: Air Tractor AT802 Across The N.Atlantic?!

Mon Dec 20, 2004 12:48 pm

Dear RobK, I work at Horta Airport and can confirm that the flight really took place!

The Air Tractor arrived the day before in a direct flight from Mauritania (in Africa!!) (10 hours flight time!!), the pilot made a night stop here to rest, and in the next day he refueled the plane and left in the morning direct to Gander (Canada) at flight level 100 (10.000 Ft).



Horta Airport (Azores Islands)

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