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Brock_Landers

Autorotation Choice

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Agree with Phil on most points but not the "tail first" thing.

From what I have seen "flat" is probably your best option.

 

Tail first can go to nose straight down in a heart beat depending on what you hit..and how you hit it...

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If the first point of contact is properly managed or under control (level attitude)......... tings tend to work out for the best.

 

I'd take the trees 'cause I don't know too many places in the Great White North where the water doesn't offer some kind of gasp reflex....regardless the time of year.

 

 

2cents

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I would pick the place - in the split seconds that I have to assess - that I think would give me the best chance of survival. This thread has dragged on for days - seesawing back and forth with no definitive answer. That is because there IS no definitive answer. You could be reading a map, talking on the radio, looking at some beautiful scenery or looking at all the yellow and red lights on the dash. When the #### hits the fan .... THAT is when you will truly decide where you are going to go and it just may not be where you think you would go when you sit on your *** reading this thread.

 

Saying where you would autorotate to is like predicting a fire season in the spring ... it ain't gonna be the same as what really happens.

 

I hope and wish that no one here ever has to make this decision and if you ever do I hope that you will apply all your skills, training, reflexes and instincts to bring you to a safe conclusion.

 

Have a safe season and if you want to know what the fire season will be like ... ask me in October!

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VertRef - the tail first thing was Al's recommendation, and also in the document called "How to Crash A Helicopter" which can be found on the net. Never done it myself, but as helicopterjim says, you may not have any time to make that decision anyway!

 

phil

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I would pick the place - in the split seconds that I have to assess - that I think would give me the best chance of survival. This thread has dragged on for days - seesawing back and forth with no definitive answer. That is because there IS no definitive answer. You could be reading a map, talking on the radio, looking at some beautiful scenery or looking at all the yellow and red lights on the dash. When the #### hits the fan .... THAT is when you will truly decide where you are going to go and it just may not be where you think you would go when you sit on your *** reading this thread.

 

Saying where you would autorotate to is like predicting a fire season in the spring ... it ain't gonna be the same as what really happens.

 

I hope and wish that no one here ever has to make this decision and if you ever do I hope that you will apply all your skills, training, reflexes and instincts to bring you to a safe conclusion.

 

Have a safe season and if you want to know what the fire season will be like ... ask me in October!

 

It's a good point jim, but I don't think the purpose of the discussion is to come up with a definitive answer, or at least that's not what I'm looking for. However, it sure would be useful, if the stove quits in cruise at 2,000'+ AGL and you have some time to make choices on the way down, to have some prior knowledge as to what types of terrain are more survivable than others (even if it's just a generalization). I know personally, based on the level of knowledge I had coming out of flight school, for a long time I associated trees with certain death. Now I know, in some cases, that might be the preferred choice.

 

So, I'm benefiting from this discussion, even if you aren't...

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VertRef - the tail first thing was Al's recommendation, and also in the document called "How to Crash A Helicopter" which can be found on the net. Never done it myself, but as helicopterjim says, you may not have any time to make that decision anyway!

 

phil

 

And for anyone who might be interested... http://www.bladeslapper.com/m/how_to_crash.pdf

 

Rather dry reading IMHO...

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So, I'm benefiting from this discussion, even if you aren't...

 

I would hope you are benefiting from this discussion. Bar flying and forum flying have a lot to offer for anyone. It just ain't the same as the real thing and happy to say there ain't too many out there giving first hand reports. I've talked to some who have had the drama and even from one guy who did the "tail first" even though he didn't plan it or even think it - it just happened - and he walked away with a cut on his nose. But every one is different and - heaven forbid - the time comes you had better have your wits about you and don't use all the knowledge posted here as a crutch. Guideline? Yes! Food for thought? Absolutely! Just remember that if it does happen - you will be doing the flying and none of us will be there to give advice.

 

Listen - ask -THINK!!!

 

.... and have a great summer and many more to come!

 

PS. If you thought I wasn't benefiting from this conversation what did you think I meant by even participating?

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If you go in the water, you'll likely lose all emergency and SAR equipment such as first aid, survival kit, sat phone, axe, lighter etc. Your ELT will also be useless. Another point is pilots often misjudge when to flare and pull collective over water (due to reduced visual cues) resulting in hard impact with water.

Obviously all pilots will make that decision based on available options, but deciding in advance that you will always chose water over trees is a mistake in my opinion.

 

Here's an interesting paper produced by the US army which discusses this very topic: How to crash a helicopter:

http://www.bladeslapper.com/m/how_to_crash.pdf

 

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Guess I should have read both pages of the forum before posting. Should of known Phil had already brought up the how to crash a helicopter document. You beat me to it Phil...

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