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Garfly

Beaver on Otter: fatal mid-air in Alaska.

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ABC reporting today that one of the dead is an Australian.

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The above NYT article shows that it's not only our own media who send clueless reporters to cover dramatic aviation stories.

Presumably because a cruise ship was indirectly involved in this, this story got batted to the Travel Department ... with predictable results.

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No one said outright, this summation has any direct connection to the crash. There's a very high % of people in Alaska who fly planes for obvious reasons and because it's a demanding environment the standard would tend to be affected by that Ie you would have to be pretty good or you don't survive.. Misty conditions near Glaciers etc may be part of it.. There are many near misses and the "big sky" theory doesn't work well near a popular site where traffic concentrates ( like near Port Campbell the 12? apostles) .Vic .. IF you are giving a commentary to the passengers you aren't on the radio at the same time. Nev

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The above NYT article shows that it's not only our own media who send clueless reporters to cover dramatic aviation stories.

Presumably because a cruise ship was indirectly involved in this, this story got batted to the Travel Department ... with predictable results.

Your "clueless" reporter was repeating the answers of quite a few people interviewed on the subject, including NTSB employees.

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Posted (edited)

True ... we even hear from hotshot maritime lawyers:

 

“It is really disconcerting to learn about all the prior accidents with these planes,” said Jack Hickey, a maritime lawyer. “There are a lot of these accidents involving private aviation and after National Transportation Security Board completes its investigation, there should be more talk about more regulation.”

 

What are "these" planes, one might ask, and what has this accident to do with private aviation?

 

Never mind, another of your "experts" is here to tell us helpfully:

 

“If you’re a private pilot and you’ve had a heart attack and you’ve had a couple of years of no issues, you can get a certificate to fly again,” he said. “Not happening if you’re a 121.”

 

Neither of those categories (private nor airline) bears upon the circumstances of this accident (any more than that heart attack does). But if this article is aiming to soar above the particulars of this tragedy to the level of a think-piece on aviation safety, period, it is hopelessly naive and muddled.

 

The New York Times ain't no small town rag. They have experts writers on anything and everything. Why not use 'em.

 

But back to our article; our reading public gets enlightened further:

 

"Private planes typically do not have extra engines, backup navigation systems or co-pilots. Many have one engine."

 

Right. I wonder which NTSB expert helped out with that penetrating insight.

 

 

 

Funny enough, as it happens, I was so irritated by the piece, I fired off an email to the NYT this morning:

 

"Inexplicably, this story was batted to one of your Travel writers rather than an Aviation correspondent.

 

Why?? Because a cruise-liner was - indirectly - involved? Really??

 

I don’t blame the journalist, herself, for this. She did all that could have been expected of her, under a deadline, out of her current expertise. Rather, I blame the editorial decision that reckoned it good enough for this aviation tragedy to be palmed off to the “Travel” section for explanation. This ain’t a “Lifestyle” issue, for Pete’s sake.

 

Nothing has been gained by the NYT patiently explaining that, Wow!, “private” planes often have only one engine!! No kidding!

 

And it doesn't help when the NYT doesn’t seem to get that not all “small planes” are “privately” operated. (And obviously not in this case.)

 

Need I go on?

 

This tragic event demanded a serious, informed response from the NYT, or, absent that, silence."

 

 

I didn't expect to have to make the case here.

 

[On the other hand, I'm also happy that someone here stood up for the young journo! LOL]

Edited by Garfly
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In an attempt to explain the theory of special and general relativity to the public, the NYT supposedly sent its golfing reporter to interview him...

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That's Einstein I should mention...but you would have picked up on that wouldn't you?

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Posted (edited)

I don't think that all reporting has to be done by subject experts but in this case, in spite of its contributors, the thrust of the article served to reinforce the confusion of lay-people regarding 'safety' and about the different levels within aviation. Among other things, it managed to disparage professional GA pilots by lumping them in with the poor safety record of amateurs - despite the advice of one of its own quoted experts that this was not "the most accurate way to think about" recent crashes.

 

Anyway, that's not our problem. That'd be how to avoid a similar fate.

 

This is an NTSB Safety Alert of 4 years ago:

See and be seen.pdf

Edited by Garfly

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. They didn't see each other. That's pretty obvious. In the "see and be seen" concept RADIO has always been proposed as a good and necessary adjunct. IF you don't know for sure where someone is you need positive altitude separation till you get a visual. eg. When HE calls out of three on descent you can descend to three. There's a need for "standard rate) concepts to be part of it too. as you assume errors of 200 ft are possible. . Flying is not a contact sport. Nev

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