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Thread: Hangar Flying or Ferry Tales

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    Default Hangar Flying or Ferry Tales

    Gentlemen,
    Are these stories Hangar Flying or are they Ferry Tales?
    Norman Malayney
    -------------------------------------------
    The pilot of a C-49 aircraft, contrary to the advice from the Weather Section and the opinion of other pilots who were to be passengers, cleared from Albuquerque, New Mexico to Bakersfield, California on a CFR clearance. The trip was for the purpose of training but fourteen passengers were aboard. Because of the weather, one passenger refused to leave Albuquerque with the flight.
    After 4-1/2 hours of flying on instruments, although the trip was cleared on CFR, and twice flying through a front in which icing conditions were encountered and the aircraft was not equipped with deicing boots, the pilot, on the insistence of the passengers, effected a landing at at Ashfork, Arizona. During this original flight, the airplane was flown as high as 15,000 feet with no oxygen. The instructor allowed the student to do the majority of the flying and displayed little anxiety over their predicament.
    After landing at Ashfork, at which point, eight more passengers refused to continue, the pilot continued on to Daggett, Arizona. Unable to secure additional gasoline at Daggett, the pilot proceeded to Bakersfield, California and landed with approximately 50 gallons of gasoline in the aircraft. He then refueled and proceeded to Reno, Nevada, his home station, with only six of the original fifteen passengers scheduled aboard.
    This entire trip reflects a lack of planning, intelligence and thought as to the safety of the equipment or passengers involved. However, the pilot apparently possessed excellent flying technique or an accident would have resulted.
    Ferry Squadron HQ is of the opinion that a Flying Evaluation Board should have recommended the permanent grounding of the instructor-pilot involved.
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    The pilot of a P-39 aircraft cleared Dayton, Ohio, under CFR condition for Nashville, Tennessee. His first checkpoint should have been Cincinnati with an ATA of approximately twelve minutes. He complained that the electric compass was inoperative and, although after twenty or thirty minutes of flying, he did not recognize any checkpoints, he flew on what he thought was a correct heading and continued.
    After approximately two hours' flying time, he realized he was lost and assumed a heading which he felt would carry him back to the Ohio River and ultimately lead him to Cincinnati. He subsequently thought he found the river and, when following it into Cincinnati, instead passed over the airport at Huntington, West Virginia! He realized at this time he was low on fuel, but elected not to land, according to him, because of the length of the runways. Some ten minutes beyond Huntington he decided to land before exhausting his fuel supply, so effected a landing, without damage, on a straight stretch of highway. He then proceeded to take aboard some automobile gas obtained at a nearby service station, cut down several small trees and took off from the highway for Cincinnati. The take-off was successful and the aircraft was delivered to Cincinnati intact.
    The pilot displayed an unusual high degree of skill in effecting a landing ant take-off from a highway in a P-39. Nevertheless, his judgment was exceedingly bad in that, after he knew he was lost, he continued to aimlessly fly around, elected not to land at an airport because of the length of the runways, yet a very few minutes afterward did land on a highway which, at its best, was certainly a poor choice compared to the airport in question. His decision to attempt a take-off with automobile gasoline aboard from a highway clearly indicated a lack of judgment or stability necessary to perform safely the duties of a ferrying pilot.
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    It is suppose to be a woman's prerogative to change her mind, which brings to mind the story of a WASP who wandered over 1,000 miles in a P-39 and finally ended up 50 miles from where she started.
    This flying gypsy took off from Rochester, Minnesota bound for Bismark, North Dakota, KNOWING THAT HER REMOTE --INDICATING MAGNETIC COMPASS WAS OUT. The radio was working well and the weather was good, CAVU at most points on her 1,000 mile jaunt.
    Minneapolis was supposed to pass under the Cobra in 18 minutes but at the end of 30 minutes it had not shown up. Then the pilot changed her mind and headed south. About this time, the radio went out. Another consultation, the navigator/pilot decided on an east heading.
    Several towns were dragged and the names read, but alas, our heroine could not locate them on her maps. After a five-hour aerial tour of Minnesota, Iowa, and South Dakota, in which no checkpoint including the Mississippi River could be located, the pilot made a successful landing on a 18-foot-wide US Highway 65, 50 miles from her starting point.
    P.S. She is now flying as a wing man.
    -----------------------------------------------------------
    The pilot of an AT-16 aircraft, not equipped with radio and therefore not to be flown under instrument conditions, cleared Detroit, Michigan, for Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on a CFR clearance. En route, the weather became worse until, approximately ten minutes out of his destination, it was necessary to either fly into a cloud bank or turn around.
    The pilot elected to continue and flew in a cloud bank for approximately fifteen minutes. After emerging, he could not orient himself. He then assumed the heading which he believed would ultimately carry him to some large city, and flew for two hours in border-line contact weather. The weather continued lowering and finally, still lost, he elected to make an emergency landing on a golf course. He dragged the golf course twice and, on the second pull-up, had engine failure due to lack of gasoline. He then attempted to effect a landing in a nearby wheat field with the gear extended and nosed over, causing major damaged to the aircraft.
    Last edited by norman malayney; 27th March 2008 at 14:54.

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