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AirlineCritic
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3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Tue Dec 20, 2011 5:45 pm

This is being reported by NY Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/21/ny...n-i-287-in-new-jersey.html?_r=1&hp

Small excerpt from the article:

Quote:
A small plane crashed on Tuesday morning on Interstate 287 in northern New Jersey, killing at least three people, “with the possibility of a fourth or fifth” death, the New Jersey State Police said.
 
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Tue Dec 20, 2011 5:49 pm

A news video is available here: http://www.iltasanomat.fi/ulkomaat/p...uolonuhreja/art-1288436736252.html (just ignore the Finnish news text, and wait for the advertisement to pass through)
 
eadc8
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Tue Dec 20, 2011 6:00 pm

Looks to be N731CA. Bound for Dekalb-Peachtree. RIP.
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prosa
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Tue Dec 20, 2011 6:36 pm

Death toll now confirmed to be five.
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fanofjets
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Tue Dec 20, 2011 6:39 pm

I just heard about this one as well. At least three people on board, possibly two more. From the eyewitness accounts, it sounds absolutely horrific. Fortunately, when the plane impacted the busy US Highway 287, nobody on the ground was hurt! This one really hits home, as I live just miles from the crash site, which is in Morristown, NJ.

http://www.news12.com/index.jsp

Access to the area is very limited because of emergency activity, so I would not recommend photography. Further, there is very little to see, as there is little left of the plane. Sounds like there was some kind of in-flight structural failure, according to several eyewitness accounts; what could have caused that will have to await NTSB invistigation.

Very, very sad news. I am just glad that by some miracle, nobody on the ground was killed or hurt.
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71Zulu
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Tue Dec 20, 2011 6:41 pm

Already posted

Plane Crash On 287 In Morristown NJ (by ScarletHarlot Dec 20 2011 in Civil Aviation)

RIP
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fanofjets
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Tue Dec 20, 2011 6:46 pm

Quoting EADC8 (Reply 2):
Looks to be N731CA. Bound for Dekalb-Peachtree. RIP
http://flightaware.com/live/flight/N731CA

According to FlightAware and NJ.com
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aajfksjubklyn
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Tue Dec 20, 2011 6:49 pm

Coincidently, Jeff (the pilot) was advisor to Delta Airlines during the meger.. Terrible tragedy.
 
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Tue Dec 20, 2011 8:09 pm

Just saw one of my facebook friend's status: "Please pray for my good friends XXXX and XXXX as they mourn the loss or their son/stepson's mother, stepfather, baby brother and Aunt who were killed in a plane crash this morning. God bless their family and friends thru this difficult time"

I think this might be the same crash... we all live close to PDK.

RIP  

Edit: Names were taken out

[Edited 2011-12-20 12:15:21]
Ironically I have never flown a Delta MD-90 :)
 
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United787
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Tue Dec 20, 2011 8:47 pm

So sad, RIP. My sister is a teacher in NYC and previously had one of the children in her homeroom  
 
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chrisnh
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Tue Dec 20, 2011 10:28 pm

Is five people a lot of weight for a single-engine plane like the one involved here?
 
mcdu
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Tue Dec 20, 2011 10:45 pm

Quoting chrisnh (Reply 10):

Is five people a lot of weight for a single-engine plane like the one involved here?


No the TBM is quite capable of the load. It is a single engine turboprop with a cabin akin to a king air. Problem is it has one engine. In the event of a failure you will be landing with a small margin for error. I would be interested to see how much experience and recent flight time the pilot had.
 
micstatic
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Tue Dec 20, 2011 10:55 pm

So sad, especially this time of year. RIP to the victims. Wonder what we will learn. IE, pilot error, maintenance, design issue, engine failure etc. Or some combo of those. Is it me, or does the TBM seem to have more accidents than the PC-12?
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spacecadet
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Tue Dec 20, 2011 11:01 pm

Quoting fanofjets (Reply 4):
Sounds like there was some kind of in-flight structural failure, according to several eyewitness accounts

...which are rarely reliable. I read the Times article, and one of the witnesses said that the plane was "sputtering" at the tree tops, trailing smoke, then she heard an "explosion", then suddenly both wing parts and tree branches came raining down. Then she saw it go over the wall by 287, then saw a bigger explosion.

It's obviously too early to draw conclusions, but I think it's as likely as not that it was a structural failure. It sounds to me like the structural failure happened after it hit a tree.

Of course, reports of "engine trouble" almost always turn out to be wrong too, but the trail of black smoke is a little more specific and seems to point more towards some kind of mechanical issue. I'd be interested to see a map of the flight path but it wouldn't surprise me if he was trying to make it to MMU.

btw I grew up in this area and still drive that highway pretty often; it's a miracle no one on the ground was killed. You could throw a rock in any direction and you'd hit a car on that road.

[Edited 2011-12-20 15:03:25]
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Tue Dec 20, 2011 11:06 pm

Quoting chrisnh (Reply 10):

Is five people a lot of weight for a single-engine plane like the one involved here?

Well if my FB friend was correct, one victim was a "baby brother." Who knows how old that is, but probably brought the weight down a lot
Ironically I have never flown a Delta MD-90 :)
 
dwcontroller
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Tue Dec 20, 2011 11:23 pm

You can hear the ATC leading up to it here. Reports of extreme icing at 14000 and moderate up to FL180.

http://www.liveatc.net/forums/index....=dlattach;topic=9661.0;attach=6554

[Edited 2011-12-20 15:25:26]
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bennett123
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Tue Dec 20, 2011 11:37 pm

Spacecadet

Are you saying that you think the crash was caused by structural failure or that the structural failure took place when it crashed.
 
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 12:20 am

Quoting bennett123 (Reply 16):
Are you saying that you think the crash was caused by structural failure or that the structural failure took place when it crashed.

I'm saying there's no evidence yet one way or another, but if the media's going to listen to the reports of witnesses to make their conclusions, then let's really listen to those reports and see what they're actually saying. The witness the Times interviewed seemed to see the plane all the way down, and she said it was smoking, flying along the tree tops, then she heard an explosion, tree and wing parts rained down, then it went over the fence by the highway and then there was another explosion.

To me that sounds like there was no structural failure until it hit a tree, but there may have been an existing mechanical fault that had caused it to be flying that low. At least if you believe this witness, who should be considered as credible (or not) as any other.

Or it could have been icing too, and maybe she didn't really see "grey smoke engulfing the plane", maybe she just saw regular exhaust.

I am just saying witnesses are often wrong, but if you're going to use them as a basis for a theory, as the media always does, then they should at least really listen to what they're saying and not make stuff up that doesn't even match the eyewitness accounts. This reminds me of when AA587 happened (obviously on a different scale) and a lot of news reports were saying it sounded like some sort of engine problem (or sabotage of the engines) because a lot of the witnesses said the engines had fallen off the plane before it crashed. Well yeah, but they also said the tail detached first! To me it's just lazy reporting; you don't need to know anything about aviation to just really listen to the story someone is telling and form a picture from that information that's at least accurate as far as the story being told is concerned.

[Edited 2011-12-20 16:24:49]
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 12:34 am

Quoting fanofjets (Reply 4):
Fortunately, when the plane impacted the busy US Highway 287, nobody on the ground was hurt! This one really hits home, as I live just miles from the crash site, which is in Morristown, NJ.

I spend a lot of time in NJ and am familiar with the area the crash occurred as well. Very sad news. An accident of any kind is sad especially when there are fatalities.
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 1:26 am

Pilot/owner used to be a colleague of mine many years ago. A disciplined and very hard working man, he had all the characteristics of an excellent pilot. Later he worked as an investment banker on the Delta/Northwest merger.
What a tragedy... The entire family wiped out.
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mcdu
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 1:32 am

Quoting dwcontroller (Reply 15):
You can hear the ATC leading up to it here. Reports of extreme icing at 14000 and moderate up to FL180.

Extreme and moderate icing are not conditions ANY airplane are designed to fly in indefinitely. FIKI certification is only to get you safely OUT of icing once you encounter. Droning along in an airplane in those conditions is not a wise thing to do. However, many pilots don't understand the dangers of continued FIKI if their airplane is FIKI certified.

Quoting bennett123 (Reply 16):
Are you saying that you think the crash was caused by structural failure or that the structural failure took place when it crashed.

Pure speculation but if the airplane encountered a significant ice build up there is a good chance the uncontrolled descent would have over sped the airplane and resulted in a shedding of pieces of the airplane on the way down. So it may have had structural failure prior to hitting the ground but it would have been the result of a loss of controlled flight.

Sad crash and the details are yet to be known. There have been plenty of instances where and Auto Pilot has masked the load on the controls of the icing event. The pilot not realizing the limitations of FIKI and the hazards of flying in those conditions are brought into the flying loop very quickly when the A/P disconnects and they crash. Even the Roselawn ATR crew was guilty of this condition.
 
virginvsbritish
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 1:50 am

So sad, RIP all victims of this tragedy.  
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 3:57 am

Quoting spacecadet (Reply 13):
btw I grew up in this area and still drive that highway pretty often; it's a miracle no one on the ground was killed. You could throw a rock in any direction and you'd hit a car on that road.

Unless the traffic saw the plane coming down and reacted, which is what I'm thinking may have happened. It fits the evidence, in that no one on the ground was hit. If you saw a plane coming down towards you (smoking or not) you'd hit the brakes.
 
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 4:12 am

Here is a link to an article from a New Jersey newspaper (Hackensack Record/Herald News group) with some later info (published on line around 9 PM Tuesday): http://www.northjersey.com/news/morr...rthern_New_Jersey_.html?c=y&page=1

Seems like the wings iced over, it dropped to the ground, over 17,000 ft., in 70 seconds, with experts suggesting 'rime' ice, mainly on the leading edges of the wings, horizontal stabilizer and did so very quickly, rapidly ruining the lift. It apparently hit the ground hard, and with the suggested debris field, it might have partially broke apart in it's dive to earth. Reminds me of the AA Eagle ATR crash of a number of years ago in Illinois. Other factors could be winds at that level of cruising flight. The remains of the aircraft will be brought to a facility in Delaware per the news reports for further investigation. It left a trail of debris of nearly 1/2 mile. What a horrible way to die. RIP.
 
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 4:43 am

Quoting ltbewr (Reply 23):
Reminds me of the AA Eagle ATR crash of a number of years ago in Illinois.

Major similarity is that the TBM has a deicing boot, much like the ATR. If the similar effect occurred here, he could have stalled out and been unable to recover.
 
threeifbyair
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 5:17 am

The WSJ and others are indicating that "pieces of aircraft" are scattered over a 1/2 mile area. One news outlet indicated they included pieces of the wing and tail. This would suggest an in-flight break-up and potential overspeed situation. We will need the NTSB report to be certain of anything, however.

Terrrible tragedy.   Working in finance, even though I'm far removed from investment banking, this crash just hit me a bit harder. Travel is part of the job for so many people - fortunately for most it is a safe experience.

Mods: as 5 people sadly perished, perhaps the title could be updated?
 
rampart
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 8:56 am

My wife's colleague at work saw it outside their office, said a plane "was doing loops and rolls, high up, any report of a crash?". Sure enough, minutes later, reports came in. They were about 5 miles west. I saw the emergency vehicles heading south on 287 as I was driving northbound, thinking at the time it was another daily car accident.

Thinking about the kids is the hardest for me. RIP. One news report mentioned a dog as one of the passengers, not seen anything further on that.

-Rampart
 
anamericanin
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 9:17 am

Quoting rampart (Reply 26):
Thinking about the kids is the hardest for me. RIP. One news report mentioned a dog as one of the passengers, not seen anything further on that.

MSNBC article indicates that all of the passengers, as well as the dog, perished. RIP.
 
idlewild
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 10:53 am

My sincerest condolences to the families of the victims: I thought most of today's aircraft, especially turbine based, had anti-icing properties to the point of redundancy. I'm wondering if the pilot didn't have his boots and/or de-icers switched on, or if, maybe, carbon monoxide worked its way into the cabin. I say this because I was involved in an icing incident. Granted, it was a Cessna 172, which back in '80, didn't have any type of deicing. We got caught in storm clouds during winter and the ice was building up at an incredible rate. When we descended to around 100' below cloud cover the warmer air melted the ice. I also remember reading a lot of similar carbon monoxide based fatality events happening with Mitsubishi MU-2s back in the late '70s & early '80s.
 
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 2:02 pm

Quoting rampart (Reply 26):
My wife's colleague at work saw it outside their office, said a plane "was doing loops and rolls, high up, any report of a crash?".

While layman's terminology is not precise, wouldn't "loops and rolls" be more consistent with an in-flight breakup? I've done my share of loops and rolls, as well as stalls and spins, and the description seems to match the aftermath of an in-flight breakup rather than a classic stall/spin accident. Also the size of the debris field is more consistent with an in-flight breakup rather than an unrecovered stall/spin.

It's pretty eerie, but given that the above article gives the N number, one can find the flight on Flightaware:

http://flightaware.com/live/flight/N...A/history/20111220/1400Z/KTEB/KPDK

http://flightaware.com/live/flight/N.../20111220/1400Z/KTEB/KPDK/tracklog

Data ends at 10:04AM with plane flying at 104 mph groundspeed, 17,400 feet, still climbing at 300 fpm.

Very sad story. I hope the tragic loss at least gives us something that can add to future flight safety.
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EasternSon
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 3:35 pm

My wife got on RT 287 yesterday and immediately came to a stop. She thought it was either construction or another vehicle accident, which are both common along that stretch of road.

The emergency vehicles came shortly after, followed by a swarm of helicopters.

Though she did not see the plane go down, or the subsequent fire, she must've arrived shortly after the crash.

My wife sat in traffic for about an hour and a half before she was waved past the wreckage - which was less than 1/4 mile from where she was initially stopped.

She described the scene as apocalyptic, with debris strewn across the road and into the median. She said a large section of the wing was leaning up against a tree, but that was the only thing identifiable as an airplane part.

She as actually quite shaken up by it, which says a lot because she's a nurse and has seen some horrific stuff.

Our condolonces to those who lost their lives. What a terrible tragedy for the families.
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jetstar
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 3:42 pm

Quoting CODC10 (Reply 24):
Major similarity is that the TBM has a deicing boot, much like the ATR. If the similar effect occurred here, he could have stalled out and been unable to recover.

I would like to explain how the deicers work, on airliners, they are known as anti ice, where the leading edges are heated with engine bleed air and are turned on before entering icing conditions to prevent ice from accumulating on the leading edges.

On smaller airplanes they use rubber pneumatic boots, which inflate and deflate and this system is known as deice, and to be effective a small amount of ice has to accumulate on the leading edges. Once there is a certain amount of ice accumulation, the boots are inflated and this causes the ice to crack and break up and the airflow over and under the leading edge surfaces will lift off the remaining ice.

Turning on the deicing system before entering icing conditions or before there is enough accumulation could cause the ice to bridge up over the inflated sections of the boots rendering the boots ineffective in removing the ice and allowing ice to accumulate to a point that the airplane can not create enough lift over the wings creating a wing stall condition, unfortunately followed by a quick decent to the ground.

On the Lockheed JetStar that I flew, the airplane had pneumatic boots for deice. The airplane was divided up into 5 sections, the wing inboard boots, wing middle and outboard boots, horizontal stabilizer and vertical fin boots. The sections inflated in sequence and there was 2 setting, light ice and heavy ice where the boots inflation sequence was about 3 times as fast. In both settings there was a dwell time where the boots remained deflated to allow for ice accumulation to occur before the sequence started over again. I can tell you from personal experience that when the deice system is used properly, it works.

I am not going to speculate as to whether this airplane had a deice system, if the deice system was used properly, or used at all, I will leave that up to the NTSB investigation to determine.

JetStar
 
codc10
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 3:42 pm

Quoting idlewild (Reply 28):
I'm wondering if the pilot didn't have his boots and/or de-icers switched

IIRC, the TBM only has boots on its leading edges. I do not believe it has wing anti-ice installed (bleed air or electric heat).
 
mcdu
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 3:55 pm

Quoting ThreeIfByAir (Reply 25):
Terrrible tragedy. Working in finance, even though I'm far removed from investment banking, this crash just hit me a bit harder. Travel is part of the job for so many people - fortunately for most it is a safe experience.

If you leave the transportation to a professional pilot that does his job for a living versus a Banker that dabbles in flying an airplane your travel is infinitely safer. Would you trust a pilot that only had the basic knowledge of finance to make key decisions in the banking industry? Same applies to operating an airplane. Under the best circumstances the amateur can get you from point A to B. When it comes to bad weather, emergencies and unusual situations you would want someone that is continually exposed to flying, trained and overseen by strict standards. I am not saying accidents don't happen under PT121 vs PT91, but the number of operations under PT121 dwarf PT91 and the numbers suggest you are much safer if you go with the professional.

Quoting ltbewr (Reply 23):
Other factors could be winds at that level of cruising flight.

What effect could the winds have played in this accident?

In this instance if you listen to the ATC tapes you hear numerous MORE capable airplanes and crews with stress in their voice wanting to get out of the icing conditions. While the pilot of this aircraft expresses NO concern about the potential for MODERATE icing. We may never know if he blew the boots too early, too often, not enough? The fact is that the pilot entered weather that was beyond the design and certification limits of the airplane, while having options to NOT enter that area of icing. Stop at the lower altitude, climb later. If it drives you to a fuel stop then you stop. But to continue in to moderate and perhaps extreme icing is suicide.

These accidents always occur around the holidays. We had the crash in PHX of the twin commander over Thanksgiving and this crash yesterday. I suspect there will be more and more of them over the holiday period. Those that have the money and means to afford an airplane and yet don't fly often enough or have enough real world experience to garner the skill to do the flying safely. With a large area of moisture moving up from the Gulf this weekend I suspect others will push their limits and have a similar result.
 
DiamondFlyer
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 4:11 pm

Quoting CODC10 (Reply 32):
I do not believe it has wing anti-ice installed (bleed air or electric heat).

Or TKS, as many GA aircraft have now for anti-ice. Great system, would much prefer to have it over boots.

-DiamondFlyer
From my cold, dead hands
 
dashman
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 5:22 pm

You are correct pneumatic deice equipment works very well if used properly and the accumulation of ice ice doesn't exceed what the aircraft was certified for. Virtually all non turbojet aircraft that are certified for flight into icing conditions use this system. It is my experience that a inadvertent short encounter with severe ice can be survived as long as a person descends to an area where accumulation decreases or stops. Descending generally puts an aircraft in warmer temperatures and negative angle of attack. This decreases the accumulation of ice on unprotected surfaces. Continued climb in moderate of worse icing results in the inability to climb at some point, or forced to descent to an undesirable altitude.
 
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tjwgrr
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 5:24 pm

Quoting mcdu (Reply 33):
While the pilot of this aircraft expresses NO concern about the potential for MODERATE icing.

------------------------------------

"...Charlie Alpha we'll let you know what happens when we get in there and, ah, yeah if we can go straight through it, that's no problem for us....."

It's hard to listen to that.
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canoecarrier
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 9:06 pm

Quoting mcdu (Reply 33):
If you leave the transportation to a professional pilot that does his job for a living versus a Banker that dabbles in flying an airplane your travel is infinitely safer. Would you trust a pilot that only had the basic knowledge of finance to make key decisions in the banking industry? Same applies to operating an airplane. Under the best circumstances the amateur can get you from point A to B. When it comes to bad weather, emergencies and unusual situations you would want someone that is continually exposed to flying, trained and overseen by strict standards.

I'm almost with you here, but that's a little much of an overstatement for me. Would you get rid of the GA community altogether except for professional pilots if this is your opinion? I don't disagree that you're safer flying with a professional pilot than some GA pilots. I've seen some really poor decisions made by a few, but then so have pro pilots. I think it's a little early here to be blaming the experience of the pilot.

But, in the end when you walk or step into an aircraft that you aren't flying you are putting all your faith in someone's skill.
The beatings will continue until morale improves
 
Mir
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RE: 3 Dead In NJ Plane Crash

Wed Dec 21, 2011 9:39 pm

Quoting mcdu (Reply 33):
While the pilot of this aircraft expresses NO concern about the potential for MODERATE icing.

It's also worth remembering that "moderate" is a relative term. If you've got a plane with some good de-icing capability, or just an aerodynamic shape that's not that prone to icing, and they report moderate ice, that may not be moderate for a relatively dirty and slow light turboprop.

-Mir
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