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How NOT To Pilot An Aircraft

by John M. White |

As pilots we pride ourselves on the safe transportation of our passengers and aircraft, but sometimes pilots will ignore reality and rely upon superhuman abilities they think they have but really don't. The recent crash that killed the Polish President demonstrates exactly How NOT To Pilot An Aircraft! TU154 Crash Kills Polish President While Twitter and the news organizations lament the claims that the wreckage of the aircraft was looted by Russians, the real news about the crash has just been released. The crew of the aircraft were clearly aware that the weather at the destination airport was below landing minimums, but continued the approach anyway. Officials stated that the aircraft's crew ignored some 16 aircraft system warnings before hitting the trees. There is no clear evidence from the cockpit voice recorder if there was pressure from the politicos on board to land, but the transcript shows the captain said "We don't know if we will be able to land," followed by a foreign ministry official stating, "Well, we have a problem." The commander of the Polish air force was on the flight deck at the time of the crash but his only comments were of a technical nature. As the pilot's made their final approach a "terrain ahead" warning sounded, along with an additional 15 warnings which were ignored as the crew counted down with the altimeter. Of course, the final sound was the impact with trees followed by the usual curse (Oh S..t in English). There is a reason for the rules of flight, minimum altitudes and approach minimums, but some pilots believe they can outwit the system. Tragically, this is the result. Until next time keep your wings straight and level Hersch! JetAviator7 I don't like this — Flight Engineer Gordon Brooks, Air New Zealand 901, last recorded words before the Ground Proximity Warning System (GPWS) alerted. The DC-10 crashed into the side of Mt. Erebus 26 seconds later. 28 November 1979 ps: Don't forget to sign up for our newsletter "All Things Aviation" here!

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