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Don't Let This Happen To You

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To all the pilots who bust the rules (over gross, below weather limits, in icing conditions, beyond duty day, insufficient fuel etc......) beware of what will happen if something goes wrong. People may be killed or injured including yourself and then you get to go to court and explain your actions. You can loose everything you own and for what?


It's you who controls how and when you fly - no one else.


Fly safe.


ps. Like all pilots with a bit of time I've busted most of the rules in my past. But rarely do I put myself in those same predicaments now.



Crash pilot ran out of fuel


WINNIPEG -- His eyes welling up with tears, Stephen Jones struggled to compose himself as he told a Winnipeg court yesterday about a harrowing plane crash that ultimately claimed the life of his father.


Jones and 79-year-old Chester Jones - returning from a four-day fishing trip in Gunisao Lake - were seated in the rear of the Piper Navajo Chieftain when it lost both its engines high over the streets of Winnipeg, with no clear place to land.


"I told my father I loved him, that this was probably it," said the 63-year-old Kansas City resident, recalling the June 11, 2002 crash piloted by Albertan Mark Tayfel.


None of the six Keystone Air passengers was killed in the McPhillips Street crash, but Chester Jones died three months later of his injuries.


Tayfel is on trial charged with one count of criminal negligence causing death, four counts of criminal negligence causing bodily harm, and one count of operating an aircraft in a manner dangerous to the public.


The Crown is arguing Tayfel didn't refuel for the trip from Winnipeg to Gunisao Lake or for the return trip, when the plane crashed. An aviation inspector with Transport Canada testified Tayfel admitted flying without sufficient fuel and without an auto-pilot.


In an e-mail dated July 8, 2002, Tayfel told inspector Joe Gaudry he set out from Winnipeg that morning thinking he had enough fuel to fly to Gunisao Lake and back again with another 30 minutes of fuel to spare.


"It was when I was about 30 minutes out of Winnipeg that I first thought the fuel gauges were dropping faster than normal," Tayfel said. "I have never seen the fuel gauges drop like that before... I would have never set out that morning if I thought for a second I didn't have enough fuel to safely get back."

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