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G.A. aircraft ditches at W.A. Beach 14/11/2021.


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A S.O.C.A.T.A. TB-20 ditched into the sea a few metres from the beach at City Beach WA. From the TV footage, it appeared like the tail section had broken off just behind the cabin. No fatalities, and news reports say the two on board escaped without a scratch. The pilot was reportedly in his 70's. 

 

News coverage and video here.

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As the photos show the aircraft wreckage removed from the sea in total darkness, it would obviosly mean that the accident occurred on Saturday 13/11/2021.

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We have the whole "Right to silence" in Oz as well - unless you are dealing with CAsA, then under some circumstances you do not have the right to silence in answering questions from their "investigators". They have powers of entry, search & seizure that Australian police officers could only dream of. :angry:

Remember, you are innocent of everything until proven guilty. No need to give anyone any ammo to use against you.

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It was an emergency, the engine was obviously stopped based on the condition of the prop so the pilot did the right thing so there is nothing to say anyway. The tail would have been ripped off by the power of the surf.

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General advice I've read elsewhere is not to talk to CASA without your lawyer present and considering the MOU between CASA and ATSB, that goes for them too.

 

This is not to accuse CASA of being corrupt or anything but it is a recognition of the simple facts that you could get charged with a serious criminal offence as a result of investigations:

 

1) Aviation offences are strict liability offences.

 

2) Aviation offences are criminal offences which means your are a felon with a criminal record if convicted.

 

3) A criminal record means that many professions are forbidden to you, as is most if not all, overseas travel. You wont be flying an aircraft again either. The size of the punishment doesn't matter, its the conviction.

 

4) Aviation regulations are so complex and impenetrable that you are unlikely to be able to navigate them without legal assistance. You may not even know you are incriminating yourself.

 

5) As the video indicates, you are highly unlikely to be able to avoid incriminating yourself given courtroom tactics.

 

Its a pity it has to be this way.....

Edited by walrus
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There is a Youtube video about why you should never speak to the police. The very short version is that people accidentally “lie” and even if you tell the truth, another credible but mistaken witness might make you look like a liar with something to hide. 

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What are the merits of dropping it into the surf just offshore rather than a beach landing?

 

Was it because of people on the beach or concern about digging  wheels into sand and flipping? In this instance maybe the pilot couldn't  safely make the beach?

 

Don't know the circumstances of this particular incident, but often thought a water landing  close to shore in a low wing  might be safer, although of course  after saltwater gets into systems the aircraft belongs to the insurers. 

 

Thoughts?

 

Alan

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18 hours ago, NT5224 said:

What are the merits of dropping it into the surf just offshore rather than a beach landing?

 

Was it because of people on the beach or concern about digging  wheels into sand and flipping? In this instance maybe the pilot couldn't  safely make the beach?

 

Don't know the circumstances of this particular incident, but often thought a water landing  close to shore in a low wing  might be safer, although of course  after saltwater gets into systems the aircraft belongs to the insurers. 

 

Thoughts?

 

Alan

I have thought about ditching, I do a bit of flying over remote areas where there is heavy timber and only flat areas are lakes. My choice would be go for the timber every time.
One aircraft I fly has ditching instructions in the manual, they state just before stalling to drop a wing into the water so the aircraft spins around on touchdown to try and stop overturning.
Most fixed gear aircraft will overturn when ditched, usually violently collapsing the windscreen disabling the occupants.

Edited by Student Pilot
Brainfart
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1 hour ago, Student Pilot said:

I have thought about ditching, I do a bit of flying over remote areas where there is heavy timber and only flat areas are lakes. My choice would be go for the timber every time.
One aircraft I fly has ditching instructions in the manual, they state just before stalling to drop a wing into the water so the aircraft spins around on touchdown to try and stop overturning.
Most fixed gear aircraft will overturn when ditched, usually violently collapsing the windscreen disabling the occupants.

All that makes an airframe parachute seem attractive; you might have a spare minute, too, to open doors, brief pax, get your wits and your survival stuff together and to give a hoy on the blower with lat/long etc.

As one wise old flyer once said: "Float and swing all the way into the crash"    ;- )

Edited by Garfly
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City Beach sand is soft and the beach slopes fairly well, and the beach is well-used by beachgoers during daylight hours. The pilot chose the best of a few poor choices and got lucky, relatively speaking.

The landing could've gone badly if the surf was worse, or if an agglomeration of water currents and swell combined to form a decent wave, right as he landed. I would guess his age and extensive experience and knowledge was his biggest asset.

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.....”you’re going in with the wheels down? I’d give anything not but we’d never get up again if we don’t”😀

Edited by Flightrite
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