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Author Topic: Landing perpendicular to beach not parallel  (Read 29138 times)

Tom Swearengen

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Re: Landing perpendicular to beach not parallel
« Reply #15 on: June 05, 2012, 08:10:54 AM »

Ingo---sorry for hijacking your thread. I thought about other possible landing places on Niku that on first glance seemed to make more sense to me. Your theory of a parallel landing was one of those. Landing on the northern reef/beach side was another. But, after looking at pictures of the reef/beach area, and taking to members of our team that have been there, I found those possibilities might have met with a worse case scenario. I think what really made me take a hard look at the current theoretical landing site, was the pic of some team members doing laser survey work near the site of Bevington's object. They reported the reef was smooth enough to facilitate a wheels down landing, so I defered to their onsite expertise.
We still have a theory that has yet to be proven, but IMHO in the grand scheme of things, this one make sense to me. But, I'm sure there may be other places that she 'may' have landed the Electra.     
Tom Swearengen TIGHAR # 3297

Brad Beeching

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Re: Landing perpendicular to beach not parallel
« Reply #16 on: June 05, 2012, 05:26:15 PM »

Ingo.. you reminded me of something I heard once so I'll share it with everyone... a couple of pilots were flying a 747 into a small field in the Carribean. Following the towers advice they made a letter perfect approach. After the smoke cleared from the cockpit the co-pilot turned to the pilot and said "Whew doggie! Now that was a mighty short field Captain!" The Capt. looked around then looked at the co-pilot and said "Yea you ain't kiddin! but did you see how Wide that sum-buck is!?!!



Adam Marsland

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Re: Landing perpendicular to beach not parallel
« Reply #17 on: June 05, 2012, 11:39:56 PM »

I think it's perfectly valid to use the available indicators at hand, and think up plausible scenarios or actions that might explain them.  It can lead to finding new places to investigate, new possibilities that hadn't been previously thought of.

It's perfectly valid also to say that since no one's proven any of the indicators are true beyond a reasonable doubt, that one thinks such speculations are a waste of time.  It just doesn't lead anywhere and isn't particularly productive other than in a gadfly sort of way, which can be tiresome if there's no other secondary purpose behind it. 

It's nice to be reminded that speculation isn't proven scientific fact.  It's also good to be reminded that without imagination, there would be no hypotheses to test, and thus no scientific discovery.  And that as long as we understand the difference between the two, there shouldn't be a problem.  And as far as I can tell, we all do know the difference between speculation and fact, between evidence and proof.  Well, nearly all.  :)

John Ousterhout

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Re: Landing perpendicular to beach not parallel
« Reply #18 on: June 05, 2012, 11:52:41 PM »

Good points all.  To open up the topic in a modest way, I'll throw out the concept of someone aiming for the trees, as GL (and my flight instructor) have recommended for survivable emergency landings. Ripping off both wings rules out post-loss transmissions (an important point to me), but allows a living pilot to debarque on the island without leaving a visible trace of an aircraft to later observers.   As I understand it, no one has REPORTED examining the entire surface of the island, with special emphasis of the heavily treed areas.  Searches in the easily accessible beach and reef areas only remind me of the preference to search in well-lit areas, rather than in the shadows.
Note: even though it's a small island, it's a large area to search.

Tom Bryant

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Re: Landing perpendicular to beach not parallel
« Reply #19 on: June 10, 2012, 01:47:58 PM »

Well I can comment on this from my experience flying with bush pilots that there is a difference between landing a plane and crashing a plane.
I expect that like most pilots that if she was under power she would try to put the plane down without "bending the boat".
Not only does it keep an intact aircraft that might be salvaged but in the pilots mind things like visible to search, operational and salvageable infrastructure and the natural desire to not get hurt tend to have them looking for the wide open flat spots. Even landing under power on a tight lake with trees coming at me gives me the heebies.
If she were in fact crashing the plane then all bets are off and time to Hail Mary it in as best you can.
As an aside,and not meant to highjack, the argument about people using conjecture to formulate potential avenues of investigation is not counter to scientific method. The "what would I do" scenario is perfectly valid as long as one does not take that to then contend that was what happened. Used as a line of thought towards investigation it opens the field to other ideas and sometimes can break up bad cases of academic mental constipation. So long as its identified as arm waving and not proof I'm good with it.
"Well... it seemed like a good idea at the time"
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