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Precautionary landing


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I think somebody felt a little brave last night.. http://www.kcrg.com/news/local/89985137.html

 

I'm glad they were able to sit it down safely. At 6pm my car got the living heck pounded out of it by 2" hail, at around 11pm a micro-burst scattered a barn across 40 acres, and at about 4am a crack of thunder literally threw me out of my bed when the lightning took out the oak tree.. What the hell were these guys flying for? All the cells from yesterday afternoon into early this morning were traveling at 45mph. I've made some poor decisions before but nothing that gutsy.

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I think somebody felt a little brave last night.. http://www.kcrg.com/news/local/89985137.html

 

I'm glad they were able to sit it down safely. At 6pm my car got the living heck pounded out of it by 2" hail, at around 11pm a micro-burst scattered a barn across 40 acres, and at about 4am a crack of thunder literally threw me out of my bed when the lightning took out the oak tree.. What the hell were these guys flying for? All the cells from yesterday afternoon into early this morning were traveling at 45mph. I've made some poor decisions before but nothing that gutsy.

 

"What the hell were these guys flying for?"

Uhhh... Because that's their job?

 

If you don't do EMS, then you might not know that some flights involve wildly unpredictable time frames. I've had the patent loaded, ready to rock before I could complete my landing documentation. I've also waited 6 hours for the patient. Typical sortie at my base is in the area of 3 hours departure to return, easy to misjudge timing of a squall line or morning fogs. The weather is what you see out of your bubble- not the official observation, the forecast or what you want it to be. One deals with that as appropriate, a precautionary can be a tough call to make, especially at night when you know the bird could be damaged if it's not hangared- 2" hail will do that, and one can count on being required to explain it.

Obviously bad departure decision with 20/20 hindsight, but applause from me for dealing with it.

 

P.S. Has nothing to do with "gutsy". If you ain't making mistakes, you ain't working to capacity or earning your keep. A pro learns to make the inevitable mistakes small and survivable.

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Actually I think its kinda nice to be reading about a pilot who decided to call it instead of reading another EMS crash article. Maybe bad idea to initiate the flight, maybe not, I can't say since I wasn't there. Just nice that the pilot didn't try to force it once things went south.

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I would like to buy the pilot a beer.. making the decision to call the flight, and land on the highway is top notch in my book!!

 

Yesterday we had some pretty weird wether in Denver (imagine that), When i left my house at around 8am it had just stopped hailing at my house in west Denver.. i live on a mountain (well, for Denver standards, a hill), so as i left i could see the weather for about 30 miles in every direction, maybe a little more. Hail had just fallen from what looked like completely clear blue skies above my house.. to be honest i don't even know where it came from, i kept looking for a cloud. The winds were around 15kts at my house. I could see a really isolated black cloud over Centennial airport which is about 20 miles from my house (there were some minor clouds, but for the most part the sky was clear and beautiful).. i spoke to a friend at Centennial and was told that it was hailing really hard with 1/2 inch size hail and 45kt winds... When i got to KBJC thirty minutes later there were blues skies everywhere with 17kt winds. About an hour later this stuff came in over the mountains, out of no where, and we had 50Kt gusts that blew up snow and dust from the ground that put us in intermittent IFR conditions for about an hour and a half...

 

Imagine flying thru that in the dark.. It looked like clear skies, the tafs were fairly accurate calling for 15kts, G22, the winds were flyable in most of the area, .. and then they weren't.. just like that.

 

i can't completely imagine what it's like flying EMS, but i do know what it's like to take off in 9kt winds, projected to go to 6kts, and then land back at the same airport 40 minutes later in 38kt winds.......

 

if i ever get in an EMS bird on the way to anywhere... that's the guy/or gal i want flying me..

 

just sayin,

 

dp

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