Presentation on theme: "Ditching Simon Stuart Squadron 80 San Jose, CA. Ditching Presentation Overview Types of Incidents & Survivability Decisions: Water vs. Trees Ditching."— Presentation transcript:
Ditching Simon Stuart Squadron 80 San Jose, CA
Ditching Presentation Overview Types of Incidents & Survivability Decisions: Water vs. Trees Ditching Examples Aircraft Configuration & Airmanship Managing Passengers Egress & Survival Equipment FAA & CAP Requirements
Ditching A Ditch or a Crash? 3 Water Crash “…usually involves a spiraling aircraft, extremely high speeds and thus, little to no control on behalf of the pilot.” Negligible survival rate Generally catastrophic event Example: JFK Jr. Ditching “The intentional and controlled water landing of an aircraft” High survival rate Aircraft may remain intact / afloat Example: US Airways 1549
Ditching Ditching vs. Water Crash 4 Successful Ditchings: US Airways USAirwaysFlight1549.jpg, Pan Am jpg & most in small aircraft. USAirwaysFlight1549.jpg 04.jpg Semi-Successful: Bellanca Viking (Wood - they float) Unsuccessful Ditching: Ethiopian 961 – Hijacking Water Crash: Three Rivers Regatta – Structural Failure
Ditching Statistics 5 Incidents Per Year (Down from 30 in the 80’s) 88 Percent are not out in the ‘Blue Water’ ocean 9 out of 10 are NOT fatal AOPA: NTSB events. 20 fatal (14% - Most in open water) Equipped.com: NTSB , 1994 & events. 22 fatal (12%) Equipped.com Egress rate 92%. Excluding long ferry flights - 95%. You can make your chances of survival close to 100%.
Ditching Reality: Occupants Often “Walk Away” 6
Ditching Myths 7 “Low wing is better” “Airplanes nose over and sink” “Gear up will save you” “High wings flip over” “You won’t get out before the plane sinks” “A successful ditching requires great skill” The numbers do not support many of these theories. Proper technique is more important. Generally aircraft come to rest nose low. Eventually they will sink. But there are few examples of “Submarines”. Gear position may affect deceleration, but not egress. Ditching accidents cover pilots of widely ranging abilities.
Ditching Choices 9 How about now? Can you make an landing point? (Lake Tahoe)
Ditching Range: Know Thy Airplane 10 Example: Cessna 182 G1000. Best glide 2600lb. Adjust for weight. Ditching procedures* (POH section 3-9) Power on: 20 ° to full flaps, 300fpm 65kts Dead stick: 70kts flaps up / 65kts flaps down Touchdown: Level attitude at established rate of descent Glide range. 1.4nm for every 1000’ AGL *Procedures will vary from plane to plane
Ditching Water or Trees? 11 Fatality rate with trees in the touchdown area is similar to ditching. Landing with trees in the touchdown area: Fatal 6%, Serious injury 35%, minor injury 65%. Injuries with a forced landing and trees more likely. Ditching is more likely to require survival equipment. Without it, a successful ditch may turn fatal. Where you ditch, i.e. close to shore, is important. Better chance of emergency personnel in forced landings. Forget the plane – It will be a write off in either case.
Ditching Offshore Flights 12 Bigger risks than onshore ditchings Swells, wind, waves Colder water Being found is the biggest concern.
Ditching Where is the person? 13
Ditching Offshore Ditching Events 14 Pacific Ocean. Ferry flight. New Piper Archer Fully prepared. Survival suits. Third career ditching by pilot. Survived even after losing life raft (Second time) July 23, N82531, Cessna 206 crossing Lake Michigan MN/KRST MN/KRST Medical flight. Engine failure. Ditched 5 miles from Ludington Pilot and 2 others able to don PFDs. Pilot picked up by boaters 2 hours later in light conditions. All four others drowned It is not the ditching itself, but the post ditching situation where the dangers are the greatest.
Ditching Offshore Flights: Risk Assessment 15 Crossing Lake Michigan as night falls
Ditching Ditching Preparation: Checklist? 16 Ditching is not a normal emergency Most aircraft POH’s do not have a ditching checklist If you plan to fly over water, make your own
Ditching Ditching Preparation: Steps 17 Call ATC immediately Avoid landing downwind Seat belts as tight as you can stand. Stow loose objects Headsets & cables out of the way (Tangling / egress) Full flaps (High wing), None or partial (Low wing) Gear up / down decision, Fuel off etc. Doors / windows open Pillows / jackets for face. Brace position Airspeed and sink rate critical to avoid trauma
Ditching Managing Passengers 18 Do this before, on the ground (Better than in the water) Exits, seatbelts etc. Demonstrate opening the door Have them VISUALLY look at their seatbelt mechanism Decide on an exit strategy. Who goes first? Which door? Children? You may wish to change your route of flight Emphasize that the plane will not sink and passengers will have time to exit Special considerations: High wing – Watch out for flaps on egress. Cessna 206. Flaps block rear door Important for sightseeing trips like the SF Bay Tour
Ditching Brace Positions 19 4 & 5 Point Harnesses3 Point Harness
Ditching Brace Positions 20 2 Point Harness
Ditching Pilots: Energy Management 21 Minimize the energy the aircraft has to dissipate. Choose best glide for distance Choose minimum sink to buy time Full nose up trim – Don’t fight the airplane The objective is minimum groundspeed AND vertical rate of descent. This is challenging. Generally land nose raised but do not stall. Can lead to dumping and nosing in heavily.
Ditching Wind & Waves 22 Calm: Into the wind Swells & low wind: Parallel to the swells, on top if possible High wind: Into wind, down the back of swells if possible Avoid the face of a swell Again, fly to minimize the energy to dissipate
Ditching Approach 23
Ditching Impact 24
Ditching Coming to Rest 25
Ditching At Rest 26
Ditching Egress 27 Don’t panic Everyone will get out Typically a matter of seconds for all to exit Open the door. Allow the cockpit to fill Cold water: Breath normally (In as much as you can) High wings: Watch your head
Ditching Unexpected Events 28 Be Prepared
Ditching Injuries: Ditching vs. Forced Landing 29 Forced Landing (On Land): Trauma, Post-Impact Fire Ditching: Trauma, Drowning & Hypothermia Post Ditching Risks: No PFD (Life jacket): Drowning through incapacitation due to cold water. “Functional disability”. With PFD: Hypothermia. Death directly as a result of hypothermia takes a lot longer than through functional disability.
Ditching Survival Factors: PFD & Water Temperature 30 How long can a person who ditches off Santa Cruz, CA, survive in the water with a life jacket and light clothing in GOOD conditions: In September? In April? 5 Hours (59 degrees) 3.5 Hours (54 degrees) No PFD, treading water? In September? In April? < 4 Hours 2.5 Hours Incapacitation begins MUCH sooner, minutes
Ditching Survival Factors: PFD & Water Temperature 31 Santa Cruz, 59 vs. 54 degrees, PFD vs. treading water
Ditching Survival Factors: Body Fat 32
Ditching Survival Factors: Heat Loss 33 Heat loss is EVERYTHING Staying still decreases heat loss by 30% Huddle / human chain / carpet doubles survival time Requires PFD A PFD can double survival time Do NOT swim. In 50 degree water, the average person with a PFD and light clothing can only cover 0.85 miles before becoming incapacitated by hypothermia.
Ditching Human Chain / Human Carpet 34
Ditching Survival Factors: Clothing – USCG Test 35 10 CG Members. Same age, weight, height, skinfold thickness, body fat and VO2 (Max) Different test garments, ranging from flight suit, to coveralls, wet suits, immersion suits and dry suit 50 degree water, calm (dockside) vs. rough seas Body cooling rate per hour in a flight suit: Calm water: 3.2 degrees Rough: 3.7 degrees Rough water, 43 degress: 5.8 degrees Flight suits are poor insulators
Ditching Regulations: Required Equipment FAA Part & : No more than 50 miles offshore without a life preserver for everyone. No more than 30 minutes over water (Interesting - Consider flying down the coast…) or 100 miles without: Life preservers Life raft & survival kit Pyrotechnic signaling device Waterproof emergence signaling device Lifeline Two radios CAP Limited to less than 50 miles offshore If not within power off gliding distance of land: All occupants must wear floatation device The aircraft equipped with a life raft & pyrotechnic signaling device All occupants must wear anti-exposure suits for below 60 degree water (May be waived by wing commanded on a mission by mission basis) If at night over water, both front seat occupants must be MP rated & instrument current 36
Ditching Additional Insight 37 “Equipped To Survive”: (Material in this presentation reproduced with permission from Doug Ritter)http://www.equipped.org/ Abandon Ship Bag: FAA Lake / Island Reporting Service. Excellent ATC resource USCG Water Survival PDF (Available online) AIM Section 6-3-3