EC135 ditching

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Hello Pilots
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby Hello Pilots » Sat May 5 2018, 14:06

I was astounded when a friend told me in offshore that a certain client mandatory has the UEBS for their rig pigs, yet the pilots that fly them don’t.
Not only is the clients personnel being paid more they also are more well prepared and better trained than the pilot in that they have to wear and under go this pesty UEBS course that the pilot don’t.
Aviation rocks.
In terms of the helmets and both pilots having issues. I’ve worked for an operator that supplied a 6 inch dongle adapter between the machine and helmet thus providing a safe egress as the helmets nato is not at 90 degrees should a quick exit ensue. And that was for fire fighting 10 years ago.
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby Jabberwocky » Sat May 5 2018, 22:26

Absolutely tragic and so unnecessary. Made me pull my socks up and ensure complaceny wasn’t creeping in when flying after reading that. Always have to uphold your responsibilities to any other crew onboard.

I use one of these;
https://www.pilotcommunications.com.au/ ... eak-cable/

I don’t fly over water very much but after my first HUET and seeing the video of the rally driver trying to get out of the car once it started to submerge I wanted one. And it will work for any situation that requires a quick egress. It’s cheap insurance. Also makes getting in and out with your helmet on much easier in day to day operations.
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby flyhuey » Mon May 7 2018, 05:12

Re: https://www.atsb.gov.au/publications/investigation_reports/2018/aair/ao-2018-022/
You have any idea how many US, British, Australian Navy and Merchant Marine ships were sunk, during World War II? I am guessing a sailor would be able to swim and tread water for hours, huh?
Check this out:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_U ... rld_War_II
or
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_U ... rld_War_II
and
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_R ... rld_War_II
plus
There were over 1,500 Merchant Marine vessels sunk


I am guessing U.S., British, Australian sailors and submariners could swim like dolphins, yet died when their ships were torpedoed, when they had no choice but to abandon ship, for those not trapped deep below deck?

I am guessing what they learned in the Navy trumped HUET.

Choice A or Choice B or Choice C:
A) Survive ditching, egress successfully, end up as shark food.
B) Survive ditching, egress successfully, die from hypothermia or exposure.
C) Get lucky.

Regarding the fatal crash of multi-engine IFR EC-135 helicopter VH-ZGA, I completely disagree with NTSB's assertion that the lack of recent experience undergoing HUET training caused the fatality. They should not have been in the water, in the first place, in a perfectly operating aircraft (engines developing power, according to the interim Report. "The compressors and compressor housings for both engines showed evidence of engine rotation at impact."

From reading the interim ATSB Report there were a lot of Pilot Errors involved, lack of CRM . . . In a Multi-Crew environment, if there is a Pilot Flying, there must be a Pilot Monitoring. What were the Check Captain's actions and where were his eyes, when the Radar Altimeter Light and Audio Alert went off at 300 Feet Above the Water, when the aircraft should have been in a stabilised approach and a slow Rate of Descent, probably under 300 fpm? If 150 fpm that would give 2 minutes to recover, for example.

The mistake made was flying on Autopilot and being lulled into a false sense of security and daydream state, on a moonless night. When close enough to disconnect the Autopilot and transition eyes and brain back to proactively monitoring Instruments, the Flying Pilot's scan was probably too slow to determine the flight Path was incorrect and Rate of Descent too high. Was the Check Captain not proactively monitoring the height, forward speed, rate of descent, closure with the ship, etc.? All due to flying the helicopter on Autopilot. Had they flown the entire exercise by hand, did the approach and pre-landing checklist at Top-of-Descent, so as not to rush themselves at the bottom and make more work for themselves, compounding any distraction or disorientation or even possible vertigo . . .

During preflight preparation, in the Dispatch Room/Office/Briefing Room, what Human Factors and Risks were discussed? When the two pilots were sitting in the aircraft, did they do a "Departure Briefing" including "What If?", such as identifying the seat belt release mechanisms, the location and actuation of the Door Jettison Mechanism? Did either do a "Blind Cockpit Drill", to identify the Seat Belt/Harness Release and Door Jettison Mechanism? How about whilst cruising out to the ship? What kind of "real training" was going on? Had a Blind Cockpit Drill been done, a what if engine failure or autorotation to the water briefing egress procedures was done, either in the Briefing Room, certainly in the cockpit, or prior to Top-of-Desecent, and hand flown all the way, this accident would not have happened. There would be no fatality to report.

Lastly, reading the ATSB Report, does it seem there was a rush to make him a Check Captain? Basically, he had one year more experience than the pilot he was checking.
instructor rating on 24 May 2016
flight examiner rating on 8 June 2017
base check on an EC135 on 17 March 2017
simulator training H135 on 17 March 2017
line check on 5 April 2017

Having a recent HUET training would not have corrected or mitigated any of the other factors that more significantly contributed to the accident or fatality -in my opinion, just from reading the ATSB report. If every other factor had been nonexistent, the aircraft would not have impacted the water.
Last edited by flyhuey on Tue May 8 2018, 11:38, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby Fill-level » Mon May 7 2018, 05:56

How many operational hours at Port Hedland did the check captain have ?

Why didn't the new company taking over the contract , take on all the existing pilots working there ?
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby oldrotorhead » Mon May 7 2018, 10:41

Wow, what a champion bunch of experts we get in these forums from time to time. First of all, with respect mr huey, none of the issues you espouse re the following were identified in this preliminary report
" During preflight preparation, in the Dispatch Room/Office/Briefing Room, what Human Factors and Risks were discussed? When the two pilots were sitting in the aircraft, did they do a "Departure Briefing" including "What If?", such as identifying the seat belt release mechanisms, the location and actuation of the Door Jettison Mechanism? Did either do a "Blind Cockpit Drill", to identify the Seat Belt/Harness Release and Door Jettison Mechanism? How about whilst cruising out to the ship? What kind of "real training" was going on? Had a Blind Cockpit Drill been done, a what if engine failure or autorotation to the water briefing egress procedures was done, either in the Briefing Room, certainly in the cockpit, or prior to Top-of-Desecent, and hand flown all the way, this accident would not have happened. [highlight=]There would be no fatality to report.

[/highlight]"
Lastly, reading the ATSB Report, does it seem there was a rush to make him a Check Captain? Basically, he had one year more experience than the pilot he was checking.
instructor rating on 24 May 2016
flight examiner rating on 8 June 2017
base check on an EC135 on 17 March 2017
simulator training H135 on 17 March 2017
line check on 5 April 2017"
Similarly the Check Pilot's qualifications and recency as quoted speak only to the dates of his own recent checks and not in any way to his experience. Where does the report say there was a fatality because of the HUET issue? No where, that's where... none of us knows how that poor soul died at the moment.
And finally, learn something about the EC135 please. This aircraft has the AP on before the aircraft is even lifted into a hover and is not flown without it being ON. There is a big difference between that and having the aircraft coupled up as you are inferring.
I think your post was disrespectful to say the least.
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hand in pants
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby hand in pants » Tue May 8 2018, 00:17

Old, spot on.
Not many but enough "arm chair Experts" on here.

I don't even read flewhueys stuff, not even for a giggle.
Best leave these things alone till full reports come out with some actual facts.
Slagging off companies and pilots here is not what slapper is about, at least not for me.

Okay, I have slagged a couple of identities off but I think it was warranted.
I have heard many rumors on this one but that's exactly what they are and that's where I leave them.
Hand in Pants, I'm thinking, my god, that IS huge!!!!!!!!
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby flyhuey » Tue May 8 2018, 03:08

Dear Knockers,

I am no armchair expert . . .

Did you read the ATSB Report?
https://www.atsb.gov.au/publications/in ... -2018-022/
https://www.atsb.gov.au/media/5774269/a ... prelim.pdf

How or why would they come to a conclusion about HUET and go so far a publishing it in last Friday's "The Australian", page 32?

The first link gave a lot of information.

The second link gives other details not in the first link.

On 14 March 2018, at about 2330 Western Standard Time . . .
At about 2348, while the helicopter was being operated in the vicinity of the bulk carrier, it descended and collided with the water.

Although the helicopters were usually operated on a single-pilot basis, the two pilots had been rostered to fly together on a series of flights during the late afternoon on 14 March 2018, and continuing their duty into that night and the following morning.
During the earlier part of evening, the helicopter crew had completed three flights transferring marine pilots. Two of those flights were at night . . .
Fatigue was probably a factor.

During night operations, it was standard procedure to use the helicopter’s autopilot . . .
ATSB did not identify that it was required as per the company S.O.P., thus, if not in the S.O.P., not an aircraft manufacturer's Limitation, not a Certification requirement, then it is merely a pilot technique, an accepted or acceptable practice. Had the Pilot being checked been hand flying versus relying upon the Digital Automatic Flight Control System (Autopilot) he would have been engaged with the aircraft, had a better feel for it. Pilots whom rely on Automation and Magenta lines rapidly lose their skills as Pilots. Known fact and there has been much written about it.

The training and checking pilot next recalled hearing the radio altimeter annunciating ‘check altitude, check altitude’. The radio altimeter was programmed to make this annunciation when the radio altitude reduced below the preselected altitude. It was the operator’s standard procedure to set a radio altitude of 300 ft prior to take-off. He stated that he immediately called that he was taking over control of the helicopter and was making a missed approach. He did not recall any alarms or other alerts from the helicopter’s warning systems. Soon after, the helicopter collided with the water surface and the cabin immediately flooded and submerged.

He (The training and checking pilot) recalled that the pilot under check had reduced the power to commence the descent, and again soon after. The training and checking pilot pointed out the descent rate and requested an increase in power
What was the Rate of Descent, that he allowed to develop before taking over the controls and what was the height above the water? If the RADALT went off at 300 feet, as set, then, 150 fpm Rate of Descent = 2 minutes before touchdown AND 300 fpm = 1 minute before touchdown AND 600 fpm = 30 seconds before skids on the water, BUT 1,000 fpm (16.666 feet per second) leaves 18 seconds, before impacting the water.

Not disrespectful, at all. Merely read the words, word-by-word of the ATSB report. Don't like what it says, change the report. I am merely stating that I disagree with ATSB's assertion about the HUET recency of experience. Suppose this happened in a fresh water lake in remote Canada or offshore Alaska, do you really believe having up-to-the-minute recent experience in HUET would have changed the outcome? OK safely egress, bob around for awhile, freeze to death five minutes later. Safely egress in shark infested water, then what?! Or, how about bob about in the middle of the South Pacific, nice warm water . . . I will even throw in a life raft AND, no rescue under the scorching Sun for 30 days. I earned my living from 1978 to 2014 as a pilot, maybe half of it flying helicopters. I have a helluva lot of over water experience, FW and RW, and MPT too. Yet, I never learned how to swim. How did I ever manage?

Now then, as far as the EC135, operating without an Autopilot (Digital Automatic Flight Control System) is not even a Limitation nor is it an Emergency Procedure Memory Item AND, I did not see in the Normal Procedures expanded checklist. Why is that? Would the EC-135 become unairworthy without the Digital Automatic Flight Control System, except for the pilot's inability to fly without a bit of help. You are suggesting this helicopter was designed ONLY to be flown with the Autopilot On! The Flight Manual does not even give a hint of that.

IF the Digital Automatic Flight Control System is not Optional Equipment and must be always ON, then show me where it is written amongst these references:
http://www.helicopterindia.com/yahoo_si ... 193407.pdf
http://airbushelicoptersinc.com/images/ ... a_2009.pdf
http://www.hdf.fr/public/PDF/EC_135_PDF.pdf
https://www.easa.europa.eu/sites/defaul ... 102011.pdf (Type Certificate Data Sheet does not include Autopilot or Digital Automatic Flight Control System) <b>THUS, not required.</b>

The training and checking pilot recalled that he did not have time to take a breath before the cockpit flooded with water. He was submerged in the helicopter and still strapped into his seat. He tried to operate the emergency door jettison, but had difficulty remembering the action

Next time any of you knockers are sitting in a helicopter, close your eyes, see if you can disconnect your helmet or headset, identify: the Battery Switch, the Hydraulic Switch, the Fuel Shutoff Switch, undo the Seatbelt/Shoulder Harness release mechanism, et al. You should be able to identify any of those items. Any of you knockers EVER have smoke in the cockpit of a helicopter? I have! Experienced smoke in the cockpit in a four engine turboprop and jets, too, and a Pilot's actions have to be so practiced that they become second nature. Thus, "Blind Cockpit Drills" were part of my training. Any of you knockers know why the switches and levers, in a cockpit, have different shapes?

Lastly, before writing my thoughts on BS, I used a couple other well experienced dual-rated FW & RW pilots as sounding boards . . . They agreed with my assessment.

Hand in Pants
I don't even read flewhueys stuff, not even for a giggle.


Dismiss me if you wish . . . May be reading about you some day, on here.

I have only ever pushed for common sense, cockpit discipline, professionalism and try to pass on my knowledge in hope of possibly saving your asses.
Last edited by flyhuey on Mon May 14 2018, 20:41, edited 6 times in total.
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby oneliner » Tue May 8 2018, 03:40

I am no armchair expert . . .

You're not an expert, full stop. You are, however, an armchair critic...the worst kind.

Some of us lost a good mate that night. Your Bull$"!t assumptions are not needed or appreciated.

Go polish the vast array of trophy's and medals you no doubt have.
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby flyhuey » Tue May 8 2018, 03:50

I have lost good friends in Aviation, too . . . FW & RW. Occuptaional hazard.

I did not use the next best thing to facebook to cry about it.

Oneliner
You're not an expert, full stop. You are, however, an armchair critic...the worst kind.

is that your best "oneliner"?

Bull$"!t assumptions

Not assuming anything. It was written in the ATSB's own words and the EC135 references are there for you to peruse, at your leisure, listed in my above post.

oldrotorhead
And finally, learn something about the EC135 please. This aircraft has the AP on before the aircraft is even lifted into a hover and is not flown without it being ON.
Show me where that is written in any of the EC135 references, please.

How about either of you:
Were you a Multi-engine Helicopter Instrument Check Airman?

Do you hold an Instrument Rating for Single and Multi-engine Helicopters?

Are you at least an Instrument Flying Instructor (Grade 1), for Helicopters?

Do you hold an Instrument ATPL for Single and Multi-engine Helicopters?

Do you even hold an Aircraft Mechanic Licence for helicopters?

Are you a Chief Pilot for Helicopters?

Add to that list, were you a former Army Pilot and Army-trained Maintenance Test Pilot?

You are right, I am no expert. Still learning, in fact. However, I can tick all of the above boxes, just for helicopters. Though I used to be a Multi-engine Helicopter Instrument Check Airman, for two different types and manufacturers of Multi-engine Helicopters, just not in Oz, where flying was apparently invented, so my experience doesn't count for sh!t, where the mountains are higher, the deserts are more arid, the lakes are bigger and deeper, the weather is routinely colder than -54˚C, and the Crosswind often exceeds the aircraft's limitations -where you have "the world's safest airline", that took a Boeing 747-400 off the end of the runway in Bangkok.
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby Eric Hunt » Tue May 8 2018, 06:15

Oneliner, it's meant to be "I've GOT the biggest d!ck", not "I AM the biggest d!ck."

Play the ball, not the man, and read the report. Flyhuey does not speak with forked tongue.
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby Evil Twin » Tue May 8 2018, 07:52

Oh FFS he’s been set off again.

Respect is earned, not demanded
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby oldrotorhead » Tue May 8 2018, 08:39

Huey man, this is gonna be my final word on this lest everybody think I am in a pi$$ing contest with you which I'm not. I stand by my original comments - as it happens, I do know a bit about the EC135 having been a training captain on that type for many years. As a matter of fact in response to your somewhat derogatory rhetorical questions - Quote
" How about either of you:
Were you a Multi-engine Helicopter Instrument Check Airman?

Do you hold an Instrument Rating for Single and Multi-engine Helicopters?

Are you at least an Instrument Flying Instructor (Grade 1), for Helicopters?

Do you hold an Instrument ATPL for Single and Multi-engine Helicopters?

Do you even hold an Aircraft Mechanic Licence for helicopters?

Are you a Chief Pilot for Helicopters?"

My answers are Yes to all except the Mechanic/LAME qualification which I never held, but as to the others I was well experienced in all those areas having held those quals for over 30 years and in the case of my Grade One Instructor qual, 40 years. So enough of the pi$$ing.
You need to read the ATSB report again, especially Page 4 and the Note 4 at the bottom of that page. The EC135AP is ON at all times during flight, to the best of my recollection and also according to all the tech info at my disposal. However of course, the upper modes are not always engaged and were, according to this report were decoupled as reported.
So far as the lack of HUET recency is concerned, that is another matter and is serious but whether it caused or even contributed to BG's demise remains to be seen.....
See you later.
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby hand in pants » Tue May 8 2018, 08:59

flewhuey, dismissed you are.
Hand in Pants, I'm thinking, my god, that IS huge!!!!!!!!
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby oneliner » Tue May 8 2018, 10:02

.
Last edited by oneliner on Tue May 8 2018, 11:00, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby Heliduck » Tue May 8 2018, 10:25

Image
"Plan twice...Fly once"
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby bangequalsbad » Thu May 10 2018, 03:15

Tell them about the Astronauts!!
Turning base
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby Turning base » Fri May 11 2018, 11:55

Always entertaining, if not time consuming when certain people get involved.
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby flyhuey » Mon May 14 2018, 20:40

.
handinpants
0ldrotorhead
oneliner
bangequalsbad
Turning base
Heliduck


Isn't this suppose to be a rotary-wing and Aviation-industry information, educational and safety forum? Or, is it truly an alternative to facebook, for forum trolls, haters and knockers afflicted with Tall Poppy Syndrome, you know the type > jealous kunts who are sh!tty toward anyone who has achieved more, has one more Licence or Endorsement than you, flown one hour more in something you would like to have flown, done more, been places you dream of or could only go on holiday, flown something bigger and faster (as P-i-C/Captain). You lot routinely have nothing to offer, really, except smartass comments. Want the industry to improve? Comply with the Regulations and Aircraft Limitations, and change your cowboy, know-it-all attitudes . . .

Now then, among all the PDF References (listed below) that I could immediately find, via Google, as far as I can discern, the EC135, operating without an Autopilot (Digital Automatic Flight Control System) is not even a Limitation is not an Emergency Procedure Memory Item AND, I did not see in the Normal Procedures expanded checklist. It was not mentioned in the Type Certificate Data Sheet. Why is that? Would the EC-135 become unairworthy without the Digital Automatic Flight Control System, except for the pilot's inability to fly without a bit of help. You are suggesting this helicopter was designed ONLY to be flown with the Autopilot On! The Flight Manual does not even give a hint of that.

IF the Digital Automatic Flight Control System is not Optional Equipment and must be always ON, then show me where it is written among these references:
http://www.helicopterindia.com/yahoo_si ... 193407.pdf
http://airbushelicoptersinc.com/images/ ... a_2009.pdf
http://www.hdf.fr/public/PDF/EC_135_PDF.pdf
https://www.easa.europa.eu/sites/defaul ... 102011.pdf (Type Certificate Data Sheet does not include Autopilot or Digital Automatic Flight Control System) <b>THUS, not required.</b>
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby Heliduck » Mon May 14 2018, 21:51

flyhuey wrote:.
handinpants
0ldrotorhead
oneliner
bangequalsbad
Turning base
Heliduck


Isn't this suppose to be a rotary-wing and Aviation-industry information, educational and safety forum?


Are you sure you’re not thinking of LinkedIn? I thought we were all here as friends & peers who share a common passion for helicopters, not in a professional relationship sense. Maybe I’m wrong on that one.

You are right though, I would love to have some experience of all the other types of operations some of my peers are involved in, but I’m afraid in the game of aviation with helicopters there’s just far too much variety for me to get experience in them all with the approximately 40 years I have available, I don’t want to become a “jack of all trades but a master of none”. According to posts you’ve made you are one of the few individuals who has had time to master every single area of aviation so no doubt you have amassed a vast portfolio of wisdom, but it’s not what is said but rather how it is said which determines if a message will be received.

Despite my limited experience with life I have learnt that if you’re involved with a group of people & you think everyone is a Richard cranium, find a different group of people.
"Plan twice...Fly once"
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Re: EC135 ditching

Postby oldrotorhead » Tue May 15 2018, 02:21

I wish you would go away huey bloke....I had made my mind up to not contribute further to this pointless thread and the slagging match it has regrettably descended into. I do not propose to argue this EC135 stuff any further with you mate. You can drag out all the certification data and other documentation you like but you are missing a major point and it shows that you are incapable of putting the issue into its correct context. We are not talking about a basic EC 135 here, as it was first certified. We are talking about a particular airframe, certified for SP IFR, as are to the best of my knowledge, all of the EC135 in this country, including most probably (I don't know) all the military operated T2s. The SP IFR aircraft operates with the AP ON as I have indicated. Anyway, you could always do the smart thing, since research seems to be your forte, and that is ring up somebody current (I'm not - I've retired from flying) - somebody from Airbus, or Microflight, or Aviator Group themselves, or the military at Nowra or even the ATSB. Then you'll get the true gen on the operation of this type in this context.
Like the rest of us, I await the final report on this tragedy for the real story and do not intend to get involved in any ignorant speculation. Cheers. ORH

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