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Posted: 6/26/2003 8:29:31 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/26/2003 8:42:45 AM EDT by Citabria7GCBC]
Ok, the last few days I have been trying to do a duel VFR cross country from AXH-CLL (Houston South West - EasterWood Collage Station.) AXH is south east of CLL at about 80 NM. After CLL we were suposed to go to Brenham (11R) and back to AXH. Total 163 NM I made the judgement NOT to fly due to weather. When I called 1-800-WX-Brief for weather I got the following weather and NOTAMS. Cold Front in north Texas generating thunderstorms, "unstable thunderstorms" Current clouds are 1900 scattered 10 mile vis. current wind at AXH 190/3 On route: NorthEast of Eagle Lake (just south of 11R) thunderstorms moving north. CLL: winds 180/5 6miles vis 1900 scatterd thunderstorms. Lighting. CLL: runway 16-34 closed. runway lights out. Winds Aloft:HOU 3K 190/18 6K 180/12 Winds Aloft: CLL 3K 210/23 6K 150/11 With the information you now know, would you have flown? I decided NOT to fly in said conditions because the weather briefer among other pilots informed me by afternoon the area would be "saturated" with thunderstorms. Because of this judgement I am no longer attending the flight school. They kicked me out. Was I way too stuborn? Should I have made the cross country? Another CFII I took lessons from along time ago, told me. Back in WWII the military was experimenting with aircraft and conditions in thunderstorms. They had some nice turbo-charged propeller-driven aircraft and what did they discover? You shouldnt fly in thunderstorms. Then the good'ole jet came into exsistance, and the military decided to test the same weather conditions in these new jets. what did they discover? DONT FLY IN THUNDERSTORMS! Correction MADE!!
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 8:40:00 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/26/2003 8:47:43 AM EDT by DzlBenz]
Let me get this straight: you were expelled from a flight school because you made a decision not to fly into uncertain weather? Sounds like you need a flight school that's more interested in safe flying than keeping instructors and lease-backs in the air.
CLL: winds 180/5 6miles vis 1900 scatterd thunderstorms. Lighting.
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That'd be enough to scrub for me. EDITED: Nitpick deleted. Nice recovery, Mav.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 8:41:53 AM EDT
I'm not familiar with the area you are talking about but in general if you feel the area you want to fly in is "saturated" with thunderstorms you made the right decision. What argument did your instructor have for wanting to press on? Could you have flown somewhere else to complete the ride and avoid the weather? If you did in fact get kicked out of the school it sounds like there is more to the story. Flying through a thunderstorm is never a good idea but also there a rarely a time when you can't pick your way through or around them and still get where you are trying to go. The weather you posted doesn't sound that bad but as the PIC its your call. You said you have been trying the last few days, what was the reason you didn't go the previous days? If you honestly feel it wasn't safe and your instructor was pressuring you to fly, find another instructor.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 8:44:21 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/26/2003 8:48:23 AM EDT by Citabria7GCBC]
Originally Posted By Fingers: I'm not familiar with the area you are talking about but in general if you feel the area you want to fly in is "saturated" with thunderstorms you made the right decision. What argument did your instructor have for wanting to press on? Could you have flown somewhere else to complete the ride and avoid the weather? If you did in fact get kicked out of the school it sounds like there is more to the story. Flying through a thunderstorm is never a good idea but also there a rarely a time when you can't pick your way through or around them and still get where you are trying to go. The weather you posted doesn't sound that bad but as the PIC its your call. You said you have been trying the last few days, what was the reason you didn't go the previous days? If you honestly feel it wasn't safe and your instructor was pressuring you to fly, find another instructor.
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Armondo one of the CFI's "I dont care if there are thunderstorms, or even hail. we are going to go and go around the stuff because "I am a good PILOT" Thats why 1 reason i didnt go yesterday. plus the weather has been bad everyday in the afternoon. today i decided i'll show up b4 the weather gets bad, and it turned out to be gettin worse earlier. the owner, told me, "I've been doing this for 30 years, we're risking our necks too...have we ever taken you into a thunderstorm. I had to answer now, because i didnt want to get her daughter introuble because a yr or two ago she did take me into a thunderstorm.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 8:45:58 AM EDT
I find it hard to beleive that they kicked you out for that. it doesnt make sense. I was taught a long tme ago that any time you chose not to make a flight for safty reason, you have made the right decision. And i dont mess around with Thunder storms, ever. Find a new flight school, preferably a Part 141 school. Ben, The Emu
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 8:47:42 AM EDT
I wouldn't have gone either. I'm a MEII. Don't like thunderstorms one bit. I had my partner on a CC want to fly under a thunderstorm in a Seminol coming out of El Paso, I just looked at him and said " are you fucking crazy". They are not someting to be messed with. You can pick your way around them but what happens when you can't anymore. Even the retired Airforce guy sitting next to me said he wouldn't go. Sounds like you need to find a new school, they seem to be interested in just getting you through the program and not your education or safety. FUCK THEM Charlie
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 8:47:43 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/26/2003 8:55:51 AM EDT by Airwolf]
Let me get this straight... you were kicked out of flight training because you made a judgment as PIC that the WX wasn't good enough. Dude, what the fuck flight school are you attending? First of all I've flown 3 ferry trips from the east coast to San Diego. The first trip was when I had about 200 hours total. I got caught in deteriorating WX in the Houston area (thunderstorms) and it was NOT a pleasant experience. As a former instructor you made a good call. Your ass and the aircraft are not worth risking for a fucking cross country. Now, I want to hear more about this FUBAR'ed flight school...
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 8:49:45 AM EDT
What's a "duel VFR cross country", sounds dangerous! [:)]
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 8:52:37 AM EDT
Originally Posted By SNorman: What's a "duel VFR cross country", sounds dangerous! [:)]
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Instead of pistols at 10 paces, it's Pipers at 150 NM.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 8:53:08 AM EDT
Thunderstorms are bad news. You can encounter severe up and down drafts - vertical winds in excess of 100 mph. In the clouds you are likely to encouner severe icing and hail can be a threat up to 20 miles from the anvil cloud. Hail would absolutely pulverize a light civil aircraft. I have always done my best to stay away and being a helo guy, I can land anywhere there is an open patch of ground if things get too rough. With the info that you provided I think that you did the right thing. I'm not that familiar with Texas although I have flown across it 5 times - enough to know that storms are very unpredictable there. Navy rules if you have to fly through a Tstorm are: -avoid it by 20 miles and circumnavigate -fly over the top (not an option in a helo or light civil) -fly underneath, not less than 4000'AGL and 2000' under the cloud bottoms (not likely to see 6000' cloud bases) -through top 1/3 of cloud -through bottom 2/3 of cloud I wouldn't want to try the bottom 2. Take the forecast and flight plan to the chief instructor pilot or school owner if you think that you were right. Sounds fishy to me that you would be pushed to fly in that kind of weather, especially as a VFR pilot. If they don't accept your appeal, find a school where the IPs don't have a death wish.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 8:56:40 AM EDT
Originally Posted By H46Driver: Hail would absolutely pulverize a light civil aircraft.
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Yeah esspecially a Citabria which has canvass wings!
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 8:58:49 AM EDT
Armondo one of the CFI's "I dont care if there are thunderstorms, or even hail. we are going to go and go around the stuff
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Unless Armondo has a strike finder and is good with it, he's going to be firmly planted one of these days. A T-storm cell can rip ANY plane apart if you fly into the wrong part of it.
because "I am a good PILOT"
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I'm surprised nobody has beaten me to this: "there are old pilots, and there are bold pilots, but there are no old, bold pilots" RLR
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 8:59:59 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/26/2003 9:03:04 AM EDT by Airwolf]
Armondo one of the CFI's "I dont care if there are thunderstorms, or even hail. we are going to go and go around the stuff because "I am a good PILOT" Thats why 1 reason i didnt go yesterday. plus the weather has been bad everyday in the afternoon. today i decided i'll show up b4 the weather gets bad, and it turned out to be gettin worse earlier. the owner, told me, "I've been doing this for 30 years, we're risking our necks too...have we ever taken you into a thunderstorm.
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I would be in the FSDO reporting these assholes about 30 seconds after this conversation. If this is really what their attitude is you're damned lucky you're still alive after getting flight training from them. Get the hell away from these people NOW and find yourself a GOOD instructor. Arrogance has NO PLACE on a flight deck and even less in a CFI. edited to add. You need to have a COMPLETE checkout by a new instructor to see what these assholes may have programmed into you. So-called "instructors" with this kind of attitude can influence students and program in very bad mindsets and habits. God, this pisses me off. [pissed]
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 9:00:10 AM EDT
Good call on your part. I trained in the DFW area, and made a few trips, both IFR and VFR to College Station. The Tstorms in this area are violent. I canceled my IFR cehck ride because there were Tstorms within 20 miles. If they kicked you out, you are fortunate. Find a reputable school. Entropy's flight rule: "I would rather be on the ground wishing I was flying, than flying and wishing I was on the ground"
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 9:03:09 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Citabria7GCBC:
Originally Posted By H46Driver: Hail would absolutely pulverize a light civil aircraft.
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Yeah esspecially a Citabria which has canvass wings!
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Im not sure about that, i think in light hail a fabric covered aircraft would fair better. the hail would bounce off instead of denting. In heavy hail it wouldn't matter
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 9:06:56 AM EDT
Originally Posted By The_Emu:
Originally Posted By Citabria7GCBC:
Originally Posted By H46Driver: Hail would absolutely pulverize a light civil aircraft.
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Yeah esspecially a Citabria which has canvass wings!
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Im not sure about that, i think in light hail a fabric covered aircraft would fair better. the hail would bounce off instead of denting. In heavy hail it wouldn't matter
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Never the less.....its still not safe!
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 9:09:02 AM EDT
Cit. there are old pilots, and there are bold pilots. There are no old bold pilots. Become an old pilot for me. PS. If you want a professionl oppinion, my dad has been teaching folks since before I ws born. I believe he also did the last edit of the private pilot's written exam for the FAA. (Worked and flew for them for years, now retired, and teaching for them) It would absolutely be no problem to put you in touch with him for some feedback and some input. Let me know. And GOOD DECISION, on both parts! TXL
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 9:10:06 AM EDT
Seriously, find a school organized under part 141. They have higher standards, and usually better staff. Ben, the Emu
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 9:13:21 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Citabria7GCBC:
Originally Posted By The_Emu:
Originally Posted By Citabria7GCBC:
Originally Posted By H46Driver: Hail would absolutely pulverize a light civil aircraft.
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Yeah esspecially a Citabria which has canvass wings!
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Im not sure about that, i think in light hail a fabric covered aircraft would fair better. the hail would bounce off instead of denting. In heavy hail it wouldn't matter
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Never the less.....its still not safe!
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Of course not. i never meant to sugest that it was.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 9:13:32 AM EDT
You made a good call. as far as the flight school goes, Fork 'em all, save 9. 6 for pallbearers, 2 for roadguards, and one lanky, long legged four-eyed futhermucker to carry the boom box.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 9:15:08 AM EDT
one option is always not to fly. repeat slowly after me. "Mayday, Mayday. Mayday Citabria seven golf charley bravo charley. i am going down, i have been struck by lightning. position is 75 nautical miles north of Eagle Lake Texas. altitude 3000 feet. engine is dead, flight controls are damaged. two souls on board... repeat as needed.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 9:31:21 AM EDT
You made the right call, and here are some reasons why - - one of the things you must develop as a new pilot is judgement, and an understanding of the limits of flight you are competent to tackle. New pilots don't have the experience to know just where their limits lie, hence they must make very conservative decisions at first. - always trust your gut in an airplane (if your basic training was sound); if something doesn't feel right, it ain't right. Don't let anyone, ever, pressure you into making a flight you are not comfortable taking. One way new pilots get themselves into trouble is by bragging about their prowess, then an opportunity comes up to prove it - now they're between a rock and a hard place - admit they were BS'ing about their flying skill, or endanger several people by actually trying to fly a mission they are not qualified for. Don't do it. On the flight school's side, you might have missed an opportunity to learn how to navigate safely around mid-summer pop-up thunderstorms which are common in your part of the country. This should have been an adequately safe operation in scattered thunderstorms with a competent instructor aboard. If he directed you too close or under a thunderstorm, your decision would have been to divert - either safely around, to an alternate airport where you can get your butt on the ground, or with a 180 degree turn to your departure airport. But it's no big deal, because you lived to learn the skill on another day.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 9:37:31 AM EDT
You made the right decision. Never second guess yourself when you make a decision based on safety considerations. Here is some food for thought: the pilots with the least experience and skill are also the ones flying planes with the least capabilities. The aircraft I fly now has color Doppler radar, TCAS, GPWS, full deice/anti-ice capability, GPS FMS and can fly over most T-Storms. My 45 min of reserve fuel equals about 300 miles worth of options. We can land with zero visibility at most large airports, and we can use the FMS to get onto any runway in the world, down to maybe 1/2 mile visibility if need be. Everything has double, and triple redundancy. I still avoid T-storms. Contrast that with a small GA aircraft. No redundancy, no WX Radar, No TCAS, crappy unreliable instruments. 45 min reserve fuel equals at best 70 miles. Plus you don't have the skill yet to do IFR approaches or the experience to make good judgments. I flew trainers for the first few years, through all kinds of weather. It can be done, but I don't recommend it. In hindsight, I would not do it again. You have no options if something goes wrong. I have never heard of anyone being kicked out of a flight school for taking the safe course of action. I have seen students use WX as a convenient excuse to cancel flights because they didn't feel like flying. Maybe that is what they thought you were doing? Did you cancel a bunch of dual flights at the last minute? When I was flight instructing, nothing would irritate me more, because if you don't fly, you don't get paid. It's like someone telling you your time is utterly worthless. In the future, offer to do local/pattern work, or even ground instruction, if there is a disagreement over WX. Also, you should know that the WX briefers are always going to cover their own ass, and give you a scary briefing if you let them. They will always have airmets out for the "possibility of T-storm along your route, with large hail, yada, yada, yada" What you have to do is look at the radar picture, filter our all the BS, and make your own judgments. Look at the direction/ speed/ trends of the weather, and always have an out, if conditions change. On dual flights, you should be able to trust your instructors judgment, if you don't, then it's time to change instructors anyway. On solo flights, you can't be too careful, or conservative. You never know what your personal limits are until they are exceeded, and then it's often to late. Like Motorcycles, GA aircaft really are as dangerous as your Mamma says. "And thaaat's all I have to say about thaaaat."
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 9:42:48 AM EDT
Citabria, First of all, congrats to listening to the voices in your head. Too many pilots, especially those with beginning skill sets, find themselves in situations where they cannot recover. However, let me play the devils advocate for a second. I have seen many low time pilots (and I classify many flight school instructors in this group), avoid weather at all costs. Many times, I would head out with an instructor that was trying to build a little twin time, that wanted to consider canceling the trip because of what they were told by a weather briefer. Most were surprised to find that what they had been told and what we saw, were entirely different things. Put 20 years of flying under your belt, and you will see what I'm talking about. Those briefers are nice guys, but they lie and exaggerate...especially if they hear fear in your voice. It's a liability thing. They aren't bad guys, they just can't actually see the weather they are describing. Here is the right way to make your decision of weather to fly or not. Ask the question, do I have an "out"? If the weather is not bad at the field, take off. Is there plenty of room in between the T-cells? Fly between them. If not, turn around and go home or find the nearest airport and buy a hotel room. Always carry a $100 bill when you're flying for that room and don't hesitate to use it. I have thousands of hours in my pocket and am currently a line pilot for an airline. The few moments of sheer terror are mostly accounted for due to my own stupidity as I expanded my envelope to where it is today. But the reason I am here to write to you, is that I was always willing to land or turn around, at whatever cost to pride or business. Enjoy the flying experience. But take off and look at that weather sometimes...it probably isn't as scary as it was made out to be. And get your instrument ticket and use it. Nothing else you do will build more confidence in your ability to make decisions while flying. Regards - Anarki
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 9:48:34 AM EDT
You made the right call, and as already mentioned, call the FAA and put the bug in their ear. and another thing.. share the name of this place with us so we can warn others.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 10:33:10 AM EDT
A good pilot is a cautious pilot..By FAA regs you are required to determine the safe outcome of your flight(even though you're not logging PIC time)..NEVER..fly into a situation that you are uncomfortable with. I think you used sound judgement for stopping a situation that you weren't comfortable with. Even if it was technically legal to fly..would you or your instructor have had the skills to handle a bad situation if the chips went down? I think you made a great call and showed good maturity and wisdom on your part, that will serve you well if you proceed to Inst, Comm, or Multi etc.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 11:01:13 AM EDT
You made a good call. I used to be an ATC and have pulled a few pilots out of the sky via radar when they thought the conditions "aren't too bad" at departure only to have it go to total shit en route. Looks like the time to fly VFR xc is during the AM around those parts.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 12:05:45 PM EDT
At 1pm we were eating at a resturant and boy i was glad i was not in the sky. its still pretty nasty right now and i would have been comming back in probably about 1:30 - 2ish. Glad I did not have to go through the shit. At 2pm I called for the weather briefing and they said, "VFR not advised!" I am sooo pissed off. The only reason I do not want to put down the name of the flight school is because I am not ready to call the ARFCOM ARMY into action just yet. I think things should simmer down a while. I will not return to that flight school though.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 12:24:44 PM EDT
Give us the name. We'll do the right thing, trust us. Charlie
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 1:01:17 PM EDT
I lost my brother-in-law last year to being pressured into flying in bad weather. It was fog and not thunderstorms, but either way if you're not comfortable flying in that then you shouldn't. Find a new flight school.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 1:29:43 PM EDT
OK, who clicked yes i should have flown on the poll?
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 1:38:47 PM EDT
Thunderstorms are where GOD goes to be alone.... I try to stay far - far - away! Where I fly in AZ there are a lot of mountains, I know who's going to win battle between my airplane or the cumulo-granite...
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 1:48:46 PM EDT
Come on puppy you let a little rain scare you...is your plane pink? You wishy washy little turd, you should have acted like a man and flown right into the teeth of that storm....and then I would have met your dad at a funeral...good call. I grew up with dusters and we buried three within one year. Stay safe bro we need more good educated kids like you to hold on and not act like absolute idiots. and next time go easy on the windex.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 2:03:06 PM EDT
When in doubt listen to your gut. It will usually steer you in the right direction. Glad your safe and sound.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 2:14:55 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Citabria7GCBC: At 2pm I called for the weather briefing and they said, "VFR not advised!"
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While i agree with your decision, just remember, the FAA weather briefer will say "VFR not advised" more often than not. Fly safe, Ben, The Emu
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 2:39:41 PM EDT
Originally Posted By AeroE: On the flight school's side, you might have missed an opportunity to learn how to navigate safely around mid-summer pop-up thunderstorms which are common in your part of the country. This should have been an adequately safe operation in scattered thunderstorms with a competent instructor aboard. If he directed you too close or under a thunderstorm, your decision would have been to divert - either safely around, to an alternate airport where you can get your butt on the ground, or with a 180 degree turn to your departure airport. But it's no big deal, because you lived to learn the skill on another day.
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The forecast was for a cool front, this wasn't just a summer thunderstorm. You cannot fly around a front and his plan was to do just that. The school should not penalize a student for being too safe with regards to MC. Now refusal to fly into controlled air space is a different story all together. A friend of mine did just the same today with his instructor's complete approval.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 2:49:06 PM EDT
I think you did the right thing. Sounds like storms were already in and around the area. There are other schools that will be glad to take your money. I just canceled a solo flight for showers and borderline ceiling. At the time it was MVFR forecast to improve. The environment at this school encourages comfort and safety. I hear those citabrias are fun little planes, but probably not near a thunderstorm. Good luck
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 2:50:36 PM EDT
We have a saying in skydiving. I first saw it scrawled on the inside wall of DC-3 known as Southern Cross. "I would rather be down there wishing I was up here, than up here wishing I was down there." Good call. I do a lot of thunderstorm dodging in my line of work here in Fl. I'd rather sit on the ground watching the storm miss us than get caught by one. I have been caught and believe me it was not pleasant. In my line of work no one will ever push another person to jump when they dont feel safe. Find another school.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 3:42:07 PM EDT
No piloting experience here but got a story for you. I was at my folks place on the river watching a storm rage. In a few moments I saw 'something' splash into the water half a mile away, then saw a few more 'things' fall...Odd I'd have sworn some of those 'things' looked like airplane wings. They were. A pilot and his daughter tried flying through a T-storm in a small plane...took a week to find their bodies. Always respect T-storms.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 3:50:50 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Citabria7GCBC: ....I am no longer attending the flight school. They kicked me out.
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What kind of second rate school where you going to? I was in the maintenance program at Western Michigan and I never heard such nonsense. You did good! I never fly if I do not feel comfortable.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 4:00:25 PM EDT
The point of flight school is to learn, and grow. The above are not possible if you are dead.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 4:23:22 PM EDT
Just to argue with Keith_J C'7GCBC would have been flying toward a cold front in North Texas (that's a long ways from Houston), with prevailing winds from the south, but no description of whether the wind was circulating around a high or a low pressure region: his last description sounds like the weather wrapped around a low pressure centered near Dallas arrived in Houston just after lunch, or it was pushed into SE Texas by a high pressure region. There is not enough info here to argue about the local forecast, But there is here - [url]http://www.wunderground.com/US/Region/US/Fronts.html[/url]
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 5:20:12 PM EDT
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 5:23:28 PM EDT
I'm NOT a pilot but I've been an en route/center air traffic controller for 12yrs & I think you did the right thing. Especially in TX this time of year. At least once or twice a year I'll be working with a VFR only rated pilot that gets stuck in IFR conditions & the potential to get a little disoriented & lost is real. We usually end up trying to vector the aircraft to the nearest airport still in VFR conditions but sometimes with ceilings dropping the MVA/MEA can become a problem (fortunately 2000-3000 feet is good for most of south Texas where I work) I know this can be more than a little stressful for me when this happens so I imagine it's 10 times worse for the pilot. I wouldn't risk it. It's better to err on the side of caution & live to fly another day IMHO.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 5:46:54 PM EDT
It looks to me like everybody knows you made the right decision. I concur. If your hours are logged, (and I'm sure they are) then you can transfer to another school and continue where you left off...a school that isn't careless about weather safety issues! I think I'd drop a dime on those assholes and report them to the FAA for running an unsafe operation. That'd go over real nice. Not even F15 and F16 pilots tangle with thunderstorms, and they've got all the power in the world. That'll tell you something about thunderstorms. I know of only TWO aircraft in the world that intentionally fly into thunderstorms and other extreme weather phenomena. One is a NASA lightning research aircraft which has been nailed by lightning in thunderstorms more times than you can count, and the Air Force runs hurricane hunter C-130's that fly right into hurricanes to collect data. Both are E ticket rides with free dramamine and 10 gallon barf bags included. Plus extreme hazardous duty pay. I understand that anyone who really wishes to spectate on one of those flights is allowed to do so, but they've never had any takers. Certainly no repeats! CJ
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 6:55:17 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/26/2003 6:56:44 PM EDT by Raptor22]
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 6:59:31 PM EDT
Citabria, A buddy and I made the trip from PHX to LAS the day after we got our instrument tickets. We went that day because we knew we would get some actual IFR. Well, we did get some IFR that day, somewhere west of Prescott (about 40mi.) We ran into embedded T storms. We were in a 2000 Piper Arrow. It was te worst experience of my life. My buddy who was flyin left seat froze up, completly. He wouldnt even take his hands off the controls. At one point we were 90 degrees to our course and 1500 below the MEA. The aircraft was almost uncontrollable. The main thing to do if you get caught in turbulence is just keep the airspeed at Va. We broke out of the clouds after about 45 minutes over Lake Mead. We both kissed the ground once we got there. I conclusion, never go into Tstorms. Airliners dont even do it.
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 7:00:27 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/26/2003 7:02:36 PM EDT by MickeyMouse]
Thunderstorms scare the crap out of me so I avoid them. If you are not making a life or death flight, why turn it into one? When in doubt, don't! Dodging rain cells is one thing; thunderstorms are a different critter. Ever read the lightning strike inspection requirements on an aircraft? Leads one to believe it is something to avoid. I can assure you the mechanic(s) want you to avoid it! You have shown an important asset of knowledge about flight - knowing YOUR limitations and when the weather is beyond your skills. Sounds like you might have saved your instructor's ass along with your own. Often when one does a stupid thing and gets away with it, he is encouraged to do other stupid things. Eventually he is not so lucky. I will e-mail you a couple neat pictures I am too dumb to post! (If you send me your e-mail address where I can do attachments.)
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 7:37:14 PM EDT
Damn! Everything that needs saying has been said! [thinking] Look at it like this, your money spends just as good at the flight school down the street. [coffee]
Link Posted: 6/26/2003 9:16:14 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/26/2003 9:21:18 PM EDT by PaDanby]
Good call. I had an Instructor who wanted me to fly with him and get some dual time. Ferry a bird from Santa Monica to the Bay area and bring another back. But the weather was taking a dive and I really didn't have the time that weekend to make a 2 dayer let alone drag it out. So he got another guy. I took my test about two weeks later and did exactly what he had taught me at an uncontrolled field. Flunked that test. Got an ass chewing for it. Told him what I thought was correct before the last lesson I got from the CFI. He told me I had been right and should have done that. Bout a month later the CFI was demonstrating gliding a Cessna on updrafts in the Tehachapis to a new girl friend. Found out the hard way it was his last bad idea. Although if I could have had a couple of the really older CFIs do it I might have suggested that we go and take a look at the weather to see how bad it was and get an in person look at warning signs. Oh and I turned back on my first solo cross country Santa Monica to Palmdale when flying over Sepulveda Pass I could see the weather lowering in the distance. One of the other planes that left earlier got stuck on the other side for a day. the fun part was that after I clossed and canceled the flight plan I went and did something but when I got home my mother was climbing the walls. Seems they called the house and told her I hadn't arrived at my destination and the weather was worse than expected. that went over real well.
Link Posted: 6/27/2003 12:49:01 AM EDT
Deteriorating weather is not safe to go out in. As a juvenile, I remember going by an airport that had experience soem pretty good hail. Saw many fabric-covered wings with holes punched in them. And get this - they had been standing still, not cruising at 100 or so. Many of the weather-related accident are pilots feeling they HAVE to make a flight for whatever reasons, while they realize at ampther level that they shouldn't. Maybe there's more to this than just this one cancellation, but it sounds like safety is not foremost with this school the way it should be.
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