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Forums | ┬Ąt_page=1 | Subject:2014 fatal crash at Aguila update Log on to post a reply !
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jsilvasiReply: posted - 14 September 2016 17:04
What are the chances that YOU'll have a PT3 ?? 1 in 10? 1 in a 100? 1 in a 1000? Tom Knauff says it's a 50-50 proposition - it either will or it won't. My thought is that it's 100 % that it will occur !! I'm always pleasantly surprised that it didn't happen. Since it's a 100% eventuality in my mind, I VERBALIZE my emergency take off plan before I waggle the rudder on every take off. Research has shown that VERBALIZATION of anything - especially something as important as what you are going to do during a PT3 - is much more effective at responding to an event than just mulling it over in your mind because it requires that your brain uses different pathways than just mulling something over. Where is the wind coming from? How wide is the runway? What's out there after you go over the fence? As the towplane turns crosswind, where are you going to go? What's the first thing you need to do if it happens? (You'd better be saying "Immediate nose down to maintain airspeed!" and if you did not you should be setting up an appointment with a CFIG to review PT3 procedures!!)

You need to have a plan in place before you start rolling, a plan that takes into consideration the facits of your **current** take off environment ==> because it's different every time. Mentally, if you have a plan in place and have just reviewed it by verbalization, you are much more likely to execute that plan with minimal delay.

This was a horrible and tragic accident. Was there a way to avoid it? No one will ever know because there were no cameras or other way of reviewing the specifics of the flight to analyze what the conditions were or options might have been at that specific moment. There are a number of Monday morning quarterbacks equal to the number of people who have read or heard about the accident report all with an opinion about what to do, and that's all right. Just make sure that you have a plan to handle the 100% possibility of a PT3.

I know my wife and kids appreciate that I have a plan.

Joe Silvasi

Bob ThompsonReply: posted - 14 September 2016 12:45

Read the report carefully. The investigators are pretty sure it was missing for some time before the crash flight.

Arnie JurnReply: posted - 10 September 2016 8:57
I thought about Bob's post and was thinking that the spring may have popped out in the accident. I don't see how he could have hooked up without that spring in place.
Bob ThompsonStart of thread: posted - 9 September 2016 15:01
For those of you who remember the fatal 2014 crash of Bob Knauff at Aguila, the NTSB has issued its final report (http://www.ntsb.gov/_layouts/ntsb.aviation/brief.aspx?ev_id=20140504X34426&key=1), and there was a very interesting, and critical comment dealing with the probable cause. "Postaccident examination of the glider's release system revealed that it was missing a spring, which likely resulted in the cable not engaging in the detent and caused the premature release from the tow line." The detailed report went on to indicate no evidence the spring had been there. Commander of the New York Air National Guard, Bob was an experienced jet pilot with over 3,900 hours, but had only recently gotten into soaring and had recently purchased the glider.
What a spooky thing to realize his glider may well not have had the spring the whole time he had the glider. I had taken off about 10 minutes ahead of Bob and it was exceedingly turbulent and sinky the last few hundred yards over the runway, and my count down to 200' AGL took a lot longer than usual. But, as I remained on tow I found a good thermal above Harry's hangar and headed out. As a newby to gliding, Bob most likely had little experience in what to do with a PTT at 100', and, with nothing but desert trees ahead, made the decision to turn back..... into turbulent sink, resulting in his fatal stall spin into impact. Inexperience combined with faulty tow hook was unfortunate.

When was the last time YOU had your release professionally examined? TOST recommends a lot more than most glider pilots ever do.

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