pumaknight
Posts: 227
Joined: Fri Jun 11, 2004 3:23 am

Not My Week For Flying!

Wed Dec 13, 2006 3:35 am

So on Thursday last week, I had the worst turbluence I have experienced, flying into Luton. We hit the gust front from the Tornadic storm cell that hit London. Bad timing and a very rough ride.

Now today I have had a passenger "point of view" near-death experience.

The flight: Luton to Belfast on Easyjet. Dep Luton at 11:05 (on time) Due to arrive Belfast International at 12:00 (55min flying time.)

Take off - smooth and with hardly any cloud, a great view of the English countryside.

Cruise - FL360 a few minor bumps, some very high cloud around at this time of the year. 4 seperate cloud layers.

Approach - Captain informs us it could be a bit bumpy due to a 20-45mph gusting wind and a few heavy showers passing through the area.

And this is when the troubles begin. Down to approx 5000ft, there was minor bumps, but nothing unusual for Belfast at this time fo year. Then we hit some significant wind. The plane got tossed around, serious rudder deflection (no exageration). The Captain was doing a good job of holding it on course despite the gusts. At approx 400ft, I could see the airport buildings and the perimiter fence coming up.....BAM!! The plane got hit by a huge down draft. The wing dipped violently to the left, with a huge yaw. The engines spooled to maxiumum thrust and a go around was initiated.

I estimate that we were about 200ft from slapping the ground well before the runway.

Everyone was just so quiet!! The Captain explained that he did not like the look of the approach and felt it was too dangerous to land. Hmmmm.

20 bumpy minutes later, he lined up for another approach. A little bump here and there but down safely. Phew. 70 or so relieaved passengers.

Okay, not really near death, but certainly nerve wracking. And I am sure that the violence of the gust felt worse than it was, but I always go on the cabin crew faces, and they looked shocked at the violence of the gust.

Oh well, I feel better for talking about it. I hope you enjoyed reading it.

Now I have to steady my nerves to fly home Thursday Morning:-((
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jamesbuk
Posts: 3712
Joined: Mon May 02, 2005 11:52 pm

RE: Not My Week For Flying!

Wed Dec 13, 2006 3:42 am

I had something similar when i was landing on my flying lesson the other day, we took off, bit bumpy but we got to about 2500 and it was very smooth, we were flying to Peterborough-connington, about 29 miles, we got there in 11 mins thanks to a tailwind, but the tail wind then became a head wind on the way back, we had a ground speed of 39 mph and took 44 minutes to get back.
On approach i was doing excellant, 2 red 2 white lights all the way down, 15 foot off the ground, Wam, the left wing swung down to a couple feet off the floor, i swung it back up and kept flaring and finally touched down.

Not as exciting as yours but was for me!

Rgds --James--

P.S. yours does sound pretty nasty.
You cant have your cake and eat it... What the hells the point in having it then!!!
 
MCOflyer
Posts: 7071
Joined: Tue Jun 13, 2006 5:51 am

RE: Not My Week For Flying!

Wed Dec 13, 2006 3:42 am

I understand the captains reason. When I fly into ELM, we sometimes circle due to soarplanes in the area. I do understand weather though.

MCOflyer
Never be afraid to stand up for who you are.
 
LHStarAlliance
Posts: 2096
Joined: Sat Nov 18, 2006 9:15 pm

RE: Not My Week For Flying!

Wed Dec 13, 2006 3:50 am

I love turbulences  Big grin
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pumaknight
Posts: 227
Joined: Fri Jun 11, 2004 3:23 am

RE: Not My Week For Flying!

Thu Dec 14, 2006 3:13 am

Needless to say I am NOT a fan of turbluence  Smile

Although I have found a great website for turbulence forecasts around the world. It also has a live trubulence explorer which shows all the reports of turbluence by pilots across the globe, mapped onto a Google Earth. Kinda fun to look at.

The address is: http://www.turbulenceforecast.com

Have fun!
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panaman
Posts: 398
Joined: Thu Sep 02, 1999 2:24 pm

RE: Not My Week For Flying!

Thu Dec 14, 2006 7:28 am

wimp.
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Sorry I moved from SXM, looking for a new house on Anguilla now!
 
alaska737
Posts: 867
Joined: Sat Feb 18, 2006 11:19 am

RE: Not My Week For Flying!

Thu Dec 14, 2006 1:54 pm

Fly into Dutch Harbor or Kodiak Alaska during the winter, that would be a normal landing, no kidding. I have done go arounds where the Electra actually smacked down on the runway at full power then took back off, wind shear sucks!!!. sometimes the fog is so bad in kodiak that the plane is just a few hundred feet over the water when its still about 2 miles off the end of the runway, engines are going hard and you keep hitting nasty bumps, i have been scared to death ready to open that exit window when we hit the water, god those Alaska Airlines and Reeve Aleutian pilots are good.

at the time i was as scared as i have been but looking back on it, its pretty cool. the only thing that sucks is since the flying low over the water thing happend, i have had about 20 nightmares where the plane actually crashes. wake up sweating every time.
 
pumaknight
Posts: 227
Joined: Fri Jun 11, 2004 3:23 am

RE: Not My Week For Flying!

Fri Dec 15, 2006 1:53 am

Wimp???? hardly. I still get on the aircraft, I dont cry that much. Okay maybe I screamed a little too much on approach today.....  Smile

Actually, I know in the scale of things this is nothing too bad, it was just unexpected. That's the worse part, the whole lack of control. I have had worse in helicopters. They move around quite a bit even in calm skies!!!

Alaska sounds fun!! Must remember to visit there in the winter.
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planespotting
Posts: 3026
Joined: Sat Apr 17, 2004 4:54 am

RE: Not My Week For Flying!

Fri Dec 15, 2006 4:03 am

Quoting LHStarAlliance (Reply 3):
I love turbulences

I like turbulence too, just not when I'm within 500 feet of the ground...
Do you like movies about gladiators?
 
RoyalAtlantis
Posts: 102
Joined: Tue Nov 21, 2006 6:02 am

RE: Not My Week For Flying!

Fri Dec 15, 2006 4:47 am

Thanks for your posting Pumaknight...

It's interesting to me that even though I have flown all of my life around the world and obviously love commercial avaiton...but I am just now starting to get really uncomfortable with turbulence!!

There have been several incidents i have read about on this forum that have made me think that i would have lost my s*&^ !

If any pilots are reading this...can you help me understand more about what it would actually take to knock a plane out of the sky and if that's happened??

Also, for any RJ fliers or pilots...in my experience, these jets are much more bumpy than larger planes...I can't believe it's the actual size of the plane...it must be more about the altitude they fly at - usually below FL300.

All thoughts are appreciated.
 
zamaria
Posts: 79
Joined: Fri Jul 22, 2005 11:41 pm

RE: Not My Week For Flying!

Fri Dec 15, 2006 5:14 am

"Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit amphetamines"

I said this over and over to myself as the Ted A320 I was in was tossed around landing at LAS a few weeks ago.

-Z
 
planespotting
Posts: 3026
Joined: Sat Apr 17, 2004 4:54 am

RE: Not My Week For Flying!

Fri Dec 15, 2006 5:22 am

Quoting RoyalAtlantis (Reply 9):

If any pilots are reading this...can you help me understand more about what it would actually take to knock a plane out of the sky and if that's happened??

well, flying into the heart (the really red part) of a level 5 thunderstorm could probably rip the wings off of a 747. Also, rotor clouds coming off the downwind side of a mountain, wake turbulence, and of course, tornadoes and hurricanes, all have the potential to end your day.

Most normal and even abnormal turbulence, what the laypassenger might deem "severe," isn't enough to "knock a plane out of the sky."
Do you like movies about gladiators?
 
nzrich
Posts: 1095
Joined: Mon Dec 05, 2005 9:51 pm

RE: Not My Week For Flying!

Fri Dec 15, 2006 1:25 pm

sounds like WLG Wellington New Zealand had some fun flights in and out of there..
"Pride of the pacific"