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Thread: [musketeermail] Intentional danger

  1. #1
    gregesmith at

    [musketeermail] Intentional danger

    Rellihan isn't just the coolest source of info on Mice, all due respect to Bob,
    he's also got some really cool stories too!

    -----Original Message-----
    From: Mike Rellihan <>
    Sent: Thu, 15 Sep 2005 08:42:55 -0400
    Subject: [musketeermail] Re: [BAC-Mail] Intentional danger

    My two main observations are:

    1. How in Hades did the suicide get the door open far enough to bail out of an
    airborne 172? Did they have the doors off for photo purposes? I've never seen
    anyone who could get a front-hinged door open more than four or five inches, and
    the yaw effect was pretty dramatic. Maybe he climbed out of the top-hinged

    2. I never fly anyone in the right front seat who I could not readily overpower
    (due to their size or condition), if I am aware of any despondency, severe or
    terminal illness, or similar concerns. I had an experience with a 16 year-old
    kid who had a "movement phobia" unknown to me, whose father set me up unawares.
    Fortunately the kid locked up, bug-eyed, and started chanting, instead of going
    berserk. We were a half hour SW of KSGJ on an IFR plan, in generally fair
    weather. All was fine until we clipped the corner of a tiny puffball cloud
    (about the size of the plane). When he triggered, I did a gentle 180 and got it
    back to the airport. Since he was close to my size, it would have been a battle
    had it gone the wrong way. He would have either gotten a face full of Halon, or
    the other end of the bottle.

    ----- Original Message -----
    Sent: Thursday, September 15, 2005 7:25 AM
    Subject: [BAC-Mail] Intentional danger

    Many of us may be in this position as pilots:

    I was asked to fly a terminally ill cancer patient yesterday. This would be a
    scenic flight for fun only. He is 39 years old, the son of a friend and short
    life. He had to cancel due to feeling poorly.

    It reminded me of the flight Pete, my primary instructor, went on in 1990 with
    local guy for "a scenic". The guy jumped out of the plane right onto his house

    in Massachusetts. It was a divorce thing and his suicide was noted in the
    papers. Pete tried to hang onto him unsuccessfully as he left the C172. The
    fellow did what he intended to do.

    In the aftermath the guy from the plane's insurance company told Pete that
    are many more of these than you would think. Instead of just jumping out, a
    suicidal person will take the plane and pilot down with him. Porbably putting
    his knees against the yoke.

    This looks like an accident for insurance and immediate appearances. Gets
    counted in the wrong statistical column.

    This went through my mind as I said "Yes" to my friend's son's request.

    Any way to be generous and caring... and safe too?

    Tom Corcoran

    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

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  2. #2

    [musketeermail] Intentional danger

    It is not hard getting the door open in flight far enough to jump out.
    I have jumped from several aircraft with front hinged doors that were not
    removed; Cessna 195, Cessna 172, Cessna 150. An old jumper thought is "if you
    can get in, you can get out." It is not that hard and I (we) had jump gear on
    (old style stuff with front mounted reserves). The C-150 jump was an Alpha
    Eta Rho (Aviation Frat) solo demo jump at my college. I had to take the seat
    out just to get in and it took us 45 minutes to climb to 7500...very
    memorable jump, it was an early jump on a five-cell square (Strato Star - low serial
    number). The C-195 belonged to a friend of my room mate who agreed to let
    us jump. We just pushed the door open and rolled out. I caught my room mate
    in freefall, took some pictures, handed him the camera and he took pictures
    of me. He was learning to "spot"...we missed the airport and drop zone. I
    landed in the HS football stadium and got a ride back to the airport. He
    landed in a cow pasture a little closer to the DZ and walked...we were both
    jumping round canopies back then.
    Yes, it is easy to open the door and roll out, even on the Mice; harder
    to close the door in flight. I had to land because I could not slip the
    Sundowner enough to get her to latch. There were two experienced jumper/pilots
    on board that day, we both know the tricks but could not get 'er done. No, I
    was not using my Sundowner as a jump platform.
    Blue Skies,
    BAC-Mail mailing list

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