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Cooking An Engine - Whats The Punishment

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Having never flown an EC120, what is the start T4, around 875 or so?


999 plus ? is a significant overtemp I am sure - and the flight after - I share your concern - wonder if it would have been reported if it was a machine without the ability to record parameters...


Will abide/agree with T-Rex on having to know all the details prior to making a decision, but your version does not look good for the pilot's decision-making ability.

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Had landed and was starting the engine again when he lost concentration on the start for some reason…


While some of the posts have leaned toward the “forgiveness” end of the scale, it would seem that it wasn’t just an “honest mistake”. I’m guessing, but I would think that the start cost somewhere over the 6 figure range in the expense book. It would seem that if the FADEC stops recording at 999 it would be too much of a coincidence to believe that the start stopped there.


Having not yet (!!) done it to that extent, this almost falls out of the professional pilot expected area of performance. :shock: Unless someone was walking into the blades, or some equal potential problem, how can we :unsure: “lost concentration on the start for some reason…” during the start. When we put the finger, thumb or whatever on the starter button, all of our attention should be focused there. We all get a little used to the fact that since it started OK last time, it will probably start OK this time as well, but it is not the time to be letting our concentration wander off to something else.


All of our mediums and intermediates have a “rat box” :up: installed and have caught a number of unreported over limits, both in temps and torques. Some serious, some embarrassing, but sure eliminates the “forgetting to report” the incident. Some have complained that they limit our ability to “keep up” :down: with the pack, but it is nice to know that the one sitting there before you wasn’t being the hero on the job. B)

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Unfortunately there are more questions than answers on this one.


Being distracted on the start is a human error, and may be acceptable depending on what the distraction was, and it's possible consequences.


However, though I never like to second-guess another pilot's decisions, I feel flying the aircraft before checking the FADEC report and also having passengers on board goes beyond human error.

It stinks of unprofessionalism and negligence (see posts on Legal Challenge topic).

This sort of behaviour is only acceptable if the helicopter and it's passengers would have been at more risk by staying where they were, i.e. in a dangerous location and/or temperature.


Thanks to the chief engineer for stopping this flight by calling a truck.

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Heli Ops ------ based on your further explanation, I'll offer this opinion so far. One can made an "honest mistake" and I've done my alloted share I believe, so I won't pillory the guy for that unless he had a track record of "occurences" beforehand. I do have a problem with him knowing about the event and proceeding to fly, with/without anyone onboard. Unfortuneately, based on the info you have supplied so far, if I were his Ops Manager, things aren't looking too good for him right now until I get more info about his reasons and line of thinking for that flight. The engine just costs money and they make them everyday, but IF that aircraft had gone down and you as the passenger were killed, then things get a lot uglier than an engine O/H or an outright purcahse of same.


One must be careful on this subject of engine over-temps because it's a subject that will draw complete silence or make many wince. Once upon a time in" days of yore", the subject was over-revs and drew the same type of response......silence or wincing.

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I've read this post with interest....and by no means want to imply any dis-respect to pilots....but if I made a mistake as an engineer that resulted in a cooked engine, I would expect to be fired on the spot...not because I believe I would deserve that, but that is what I would expect. I know from a few past gaffs that even the most minor mistakes quickly escalate into major ones, and the lack of sympathy or understanding as to the "why's or how's" mistakes get made, or how diligently I might have performed previously, there 'appears' to be a double standard to how pilots and engineers are treated when things go wrong. I have never made such a serious mistake as that, but I can see in foresight that it would carry a lot of bad, bad connotations to anyone at my current or past employers for the hapless engineer responsible for a mistake the resulted in a cooked engine. Is it that engineers are held to a much higher expectation?...or is it that maintenance errors are regarded more seriously? I don't know. any input from other engineers on this?...I have just 'sensed' this mood in this industry a lot in the past....I teach my apprentices that "there are no acceptable mistakes, EVER" but I also know we are human...we will make them. we all, pilots and engineers, strive to prevent them, but should we be persecuted for a failing of being human?....short of gross negligenceof course.

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Arctic Front ----- totally agree with you sir. The particular concern that I have is this and I'll draw a parallel. If you made a major mistake during maintenance on some part of an aircraft's engine and knew about that mistake, would you also remain silent and allow that aircraft to make a flight even though it might complete same successfully? The "mistake " is human and you are correct, but saying nothing and allowing that aircraft to take-off is a "decision" on your part.and not part of the original "mistake". The former may/may not be acceptable to some superiors, but the latter would be hard to explain away to the DOM.

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Arctic_Front-------understood. I just got your "mix all talked up". :D I am sorry to report though, that I was part of a near-disaster eons ago because of an engineer of many years doing exactly what we are talking about here. He made a "mistake" and "decided" to amplify that mistake my staying quiet about it. It was his belief that if anything happened that the "mistake" would be damaged and not found out (so he stated). After completing the flight, the aircraft was left outside and all left, knowing nothing was amiss. He was dicovered in the wee hours of the morning in the act of correcting his "mistake". That was another poor "decision" on top of the original one. Result?.......after all the dust settled, his license was suspended for 2 years. Do not read into this that I am attacking engineers, but just explaining what happened and how an honest "mistake" can be compounded by the "decisions" we make afterwards, when we know we have made that "mistake". "Nuff" said.

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