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Bitumen outlandings


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I did a BFR for a pilot and when I pulled the power off to simulate an engine failure in cruise flight, the pilot went out of his way to find a road to land on. A little while later on the same review flight, I did the same thing and got the same result even though there were nautical miles of open paddocks to land on.


I looked out of my front door one day and saw the pitifull sight of an aircraft wing pointing skyward and the fuselage lying obliquely across the road with all manner of flashing lights and sirens in attendance. The pilot suffered an engine failure on take-off and made a low level turn of more than 90 deg to attempt to land on the bitumen road. The aircraft tore one wing clean off, deformed the control panel, bent the control yokes and collapsed the seats through the floor. All occupants were severely injured and some were flwon out by the RFDS. There is wide grassed paddock that the pilot could have landed on and caused minimal damage but the decision was made to land on the bitumen road with almost fatal consequences.


I have wondered for a long time if this is a result of training that has occurred around major centres where roads are the only open space available or is there some other factor involved? Maybe others have some views on this as I would tend to think that a bitumen road would be the last place to land for the average glider pilot.


Is this a result of modern training practices?


Bilby 54



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Not too many bitumen roads around here! Many paddocks though! Interesting thought though!


Have considered using roads as a last resort if all else was unavailable!


Will haveto contemplate!


Mean while I'd stick to the paddock's, with th e nearest farmhouse not ot far away, nice tea and scone's, you know!


Maybe even Ham & Cheese Cruisant's, we all need to live in hope!


Just lovinit!


Cheers Guy



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Tristo went through this with me during my initial training .


He asked me why it might NOT be a good idea to think of a roadway as the first option.


"Too many things to hit", I replied, saying that there were primarily cars, trucks, tractors, roos, cows and those big thick brown sticks with green stuff at the top that always grow next to roads - perfect for shortening the wingspan.


"Correct answer" he said, pointing out the zillion suitable paddocks around for a safe emergency landing.


One of the things he also taught me was on the initial climb, to look for a suitable landing area in case of EFATO, and to remember the physics of what happens in steep turns at low altitudes with low speeds, and search for something 30 degrees either side of runway heading.


Since then, I have always gone through an EFATO checklist before firewalling the throttle.





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It amazes me :;)6: when there is a choice of ends to leave from (no wind), that people pick the wrong end and depart over town or over other obstacles that would be impossible if suffering the dreaded EFATO. :;)1:





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Roads Vs. Paddocks.


To use a road, is a temptation that should be resisted unless carefully examined. This requires the engine to be running. The biggest problem is the presence of wires and associated poles that might become obvious (if at all) very late in the process.(As well as all the things that Ben has mentioned,) Plus cattle grids. If you brush a tree with a wing, it will spin you into the next tree, or take the wing off.


The road offers a surface that is predictable. That is it's lure. I look at it this way....


If you get it a little wrong in a paddock, you do a bit of damage. If you are unlucky on a road, you crash and burn. Nev...



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