15 November 2017

Have your say...

Should Sounds Air have 1900s???

Have you expressed your suggestion on where they should fly on the link below



  1. I agree with the move to 1900's, as it is a move to twin engine aircraft as oppose to just operating single engine aircraft. There are people who do not like flying in single engine aircraft and if Soundsair does move to twin engine and depending on the routes the 1900's will be used for, will properly see more people flying on their services.

  2. Ah yes, the old single engine myth! I hope the B1900's will have a gentleman walking in front ringing a bell and shouting at the peasants to get out of the way
    It's just plain ignorance that is perpetuating the fear of single engine IFR. :-)

    Quick google brings up these unverified, but likely accurate statements

    “An engine failure related accident in a twin is four times more likely to cause serious or fatal injuries.” (Richard Aarons citing an NTSB report in FAA document FAA-P-8740-25 AFO-800-1079)

    "Since 1985 when the first single engine turboprop went into service, all single engine turboprop aircraft COMBINED have compiled over 10,000,000 (ten million) flight hours with no (that’s zero) fatalities in North America due to engine failure"

    1. But the general public don't know/care about that. It's all about perception. I know my mother will not fly Sounds Air to CHC, but with B1900's she would be a regular.

    2. Maybe you're right, but perhaps they would care if they did know? You should pass on the correct info to your mother. Statistically she will be safer in a PC-12, and it's a much nicer ride to boot!

    3. The only full engine failure I've had, in my career as a pilot was a single engine turbine. Fortunately it was a clear day with a suitable landing area near by. Had I been in or above cloud in a different location the outcome would have been very different. A friend of mine suffered an engine failure very shortly after take off from wellington in a light turbine powered twin. A return to land via the circuit was very little issue. Had that turbine engine been the only on on the aircraft, I'm certain there would have been deaths.

      The idea that turboprop engines don't fail is a myth and a fallacy. And, that's excluding the environmental/other factors that can cause them to stop e.g weather, fuel, birds etc. If they never failed, airlines would never spend millions training and keeping their pilots in practice for the event should it occur. NZ regional turboprops have a shutdown every couple of years

    4. Both good outcomes. However the hard numbers prove beyond doubt that you will be safer in a single turbine.

      The C90 at WLG was exactly the outcome you would hope for with a turbine twin. The C90 that had a very similar failure resulting in multiple deaths at Toowoomba in 2001 was unfortunately not so good

      No one is claiming a turboprop doesn't fail. But have their been any recorded fatalities directly caused by a single engine turbine failing? The SEIFR training is centered on engine failures the same as twins, however the focus is on putting it down safely rather than trying (often unsuccessfully) to keep it flying

      SEIFR is safe and it's here to stay. Might not look as glamorous in your logbook, but it is safe :-)

    5. Indeed they were both good outcomes. My one, due to luck and circumstance. The one at wellington,- due to the aircraft configuration (having another engine to return it home)
      The answer to your question is yes, there have been a great number of fatalities as a result of the failure of single engine turbines. A very quick "google" will provide some good reading only on page 1. It happens every few years. Engine failures in caravans in particular seem to happen about once a year, often with acceptable outcomes due to again, luck and circumstance. The problem that I have is that when you are IFR, quite often those circumstances are not as ideal as they are when flying VFR. Stuck in or above cloud and/or at night with the failure of an engine is going to require some fairly intense praying for a resulting good outcome as the good circumstance is all but depleted. Not that it is a comparison between multi engined IFR however single engine IFR is a fairly new concept, comparatively. With there only being a very tiny fraction of a single percent of SEIFR flights having been conducted over the years compared to MEIFR flights, of course the statistics are going to be vastly different. However with growing popularity of SEIFR, will we start to see some more grim statistics filter through over time ?

    6. Single engine IFR for commercial operations was finally authorised in the EU in March 2017. The amending EU regulation can be found at http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/HTML/?uri=CELEX:32017R0363&from=EN

      It is interesting to consider the extent to which such commercial operations in NZ would meet the EU requirements.

      In the full Aarons article cited above in the first post, he says:

      "This article is not intended to debate the relative merits of twins versus singles. The twin offers obvious safety advantages over the single, especially in the enroute phase, and if, only if, the pilot fully understands the real options offered by that second engine in the takeoff and approach phases as well. Takeoff is the most critical time for a light-twin pilot, but if something goes wrong he may have the option of continued flight, an option denied his single-engine counterpart. More often than not that second engine will provide only a little more time to pick a soft spot. (This assumes that the engine is lost before the aircraft reaches maneuvering altitude of 300 to 500 feet.) But even those few extra seconds, representing a few hundred extra yards, can give the twin pilot a hell of a safety advantage over his single-engine counterpart. But I must stress again, this safety advantage exists only if the multi-engine pilot fully understands his machine."

    7. To infer that SEIFR is somehow safer than MEIFR is ridiculous, and I would suggest, the musings of an armchair pilot.

      Question: If your single turbine engine fails at night over mountainous terrain, where are you going?

    8. ^^ Why is ridiculous? Can you prove that it isn't safer? Do you have data to back up your claim that MEIFR is safer than SEIFR? Please post a link :-) Yes I am an armchair google pilot, but I simply cannot find anything to prove SEIFR turbine is less safe than twin turbine?

      I did a google as suggested, but cannot find any fatalities directly caused by an engine failure in single turbine? Do you have a link?

      If indeed there are fatalities every few years due to engine failures, then surely that rate is still statistically far less than the twin turbine fleet?

    9. "I did a google as suggested, but cannot find any fatalities directly caused by an engine failure in single turbine? Do you have a link?"



      And there's plenty more.

    10. "Yes, you can set out data to show that, and when I was young I did, but let me tell you, in the real world that is not what actually happens" - a memorable rebuke I heard given years ago to an armchair theorist.

      No one given a choice between single pilot single engine IFR and twin engined two pilot operation should hesitate in choosing the latter.

    11. Hi Anon, here are a few Caravan engine failure accidents I pulled off ASN. This is only a handful, not all. They're only the Caravan, not the other single engine turbine aircraft out there. They're only ones that resulted in fatalities not the hundreds more which were engine failures but nil fatalities. Fortunately, the majority of Caravan (in this instance) flying is VFR, that is, in the clear by day. Usually scenic and charter & the like. This sort of flying usually leaves room for somewhere to land as you are doing it all visually. When you are IFR, in the cloud, maybe at night, above the mountains or cook straight - you don't have the same options to make a "forced landing" as you do by day VFR. I can tell you are a huge advocate of single engine IFR, which is great. But remember, when Cessna, Pilatus and their ilk keep spouting off that there has never been a fatality due single engine turbine failure, take it with a grain of salt. Remember, they are in the business of sellin airplanes ! Not reminding you of the risks associated. The truth is, engines DO fail. Often. And one day, it's highly likely it will happen in NZ on SEIFR (it happens all the time on VFR in nz, search para ops and ag ops of the last 20 years you will find a few). But the day it does happen on RPT with fare paying passengers, whether they end up on the side of a mountain or in the drink,- you can be sure that this day will be the last for SEIFR RPT in NZ. Be it through regulation or the simple public shunning of that type of flying. The media will make an absolute meal of it, story of the year.

      Some grim briefs for you;

    12. Interesting reading thank you, although probably only a couple can be attributed to a genuine engine failure, and then take in to account the third world factor. How many kingair / B1900 / Dash 8 / ATR fatalities did you find during the search :-)

      I honestly have no particular interest either way (believe it or not!), it just amuses me no end that there are still people out there so adamant that SEIFR is inherently dangerous in the face of statistics that seem to clearly prove otherwise! The recent submissions that resulted in SET approval in Europe say the statistics are on par with Multi Turbine and trending for the better

      I'm not sure CAA and EASA approved SEIFR / SET without a little bit of research and evidence it's safe!

      Do you have anything to prove the regulators have made the wrong decision? Again, I cannot find ANYTHING on Google to suggest SEIFR is more dangerous than multi turbine, apart from opinions like yours :-)

      It's an interesting debate :-)

    13. Those links I provided are all fatal accidents as a direct result of an engine failure in a Cessna Caravan. Not a couple. And its only a handful. The 3rd world has absolutely nothing to do with it. A PT6 engine is a PT6, supported directly by pratt & whitney in probably more countries that have McDonalds. (same can't be said for some of the other turbine manufacturers)

      There are plenty of fatalities on king air through ATR, as you say. Why ? There are significantly more flight hours conducted on these types under this kind of operation. You are trying to compare apples with oranges. Like I said before, SEIFR is a reiteratively new concept. So there for the comparatively low number of accidents has happened thus far. In a significantly lower number of flight hours. Let me give you some comparisons to understand this. In the united states alone there are 15 times more light multi engine aircraft of similar size operating than there are single engine turbine. This does not include the larger multi engine turbo props.
      In terms of accidents for the Cessna caravan as discussed above, those accidents were only some fatal ones attributed to engine failure. Not that it matters but there are heaps more fatalities due other causes. Also not that it matters, but just under 10% of all Cessna caravans made have been destroyed in an accident.
      Now I know you think that multi engine aircraft are unsafe. To the lightly educated this can be understandable. Yes it is true that some multi engined aircraft can be a handful when an engine stops. However this is mainly smaller, underpowered types and most often these accidents have had inexperienced or even private pilots flying them. The accident rate has been far less with professional pilots in aircraft appropriately designed for flight on one engine. Yes a notably exception is the recent ATR crash where by the crew had an engine failure then shut down the operating engine. Bad move, human error. But thats what, 1 accident attributed to engine failure on the ATR ? Out of how many millions of flight hours ? And how many hundreds of engine failures (and successful landings) in their time ? AND, let it be known that the ATR is not the best / easiest performing turboprop flying with one engine. I am unaware of any fatal accidents as a result of engine failure in the Dash 8 type. Again, certainly many engine shutdown has occurred on that type also.

      I'm not sure where you get your statistics from, but clearly they are a bit jollied up. I mean, you've just been telling us there has never been a fatal accident in a SE turbine attributed to engine failure. We know that's horse apples. At the end of the flight, I just base my opinion on experience. Nearly 30 years in the game has taught me that machinery is not perfect and things fail. I know of, have seen many turbine engines fail. I've experienced one my self. I was told by a P&W guy (after that incident) that they had one about every 200000 flying hours on the PT6. Unrelated, on a course I was told of a guy in Canada that had experienced 10 engine failures with the PT6 alone. Thats right, TEN! And thats only one guy and that was back in the 90s. I know many pilots who have experienced more than one in their careers, in fact most senior pilots upon retirement will have a few stories to tell.

      When it comes to the fact, these things can and DO fail, if you've only got one and it failed, whilst IFR in the soup - there's a good chance you and your passengers are going to die. So until the day when these engines simply Don't stop, and Boeing & Airbus start building single engine 400 seat aircraft - I think I'll continue flying around with some redundancy. I compare it to rock climbing without a safety harness. Sure, you might be good, know what you're doing and have never fallen before, - but that doesn't mean you will never need that safety harness one day.

    14. Sounds like you know some very unlucky pilots!! I hope I'm never sitting behind them, they must be solely responsible for the PT6 statistical failure rate :-) The guy with 10 engine failures should perhaps look in to his engine handling and maintenance practices!!

      I don't think multi engine aircraft are unsafe at all, I just cannot find ANYTHING to support your view that single engine turbine is unsafe or worse than multi turbine. There is simply nothing out there other than opinions and hearsay

      Perhaps you know something EASA, CAA, CASA, FAA, FOCA etc have overlooked in allowing these aircraft to fly SEIFR?

      If indeed you do, it may be prudent to raise your concerns with the regulator :-)

    15. Rather old but interesting none the less, surely things haven't got worse since this was published? I should imagine as the fleet hours have increased dramatically the statistics have only improved. Of course this may just be someones opinion, but looks well researched :-)


    16. What do you expect to find ? I mean, isn't it basic common sense that dual redundancy is better than not ? I know you're struggling with the understanding that these engines can fail, perhaps you should fly up to Canada (on a twin engined aircraft) and preach to P&W that their engines never fail and that the thousands of recorded cases are all hoaxes ? I'm sure they would give you a job right away !

      I'm not saying that they are unsafe. They are an absolutely fantastic engine with a lifetime of remarkable reliability. However, (this being the part you don't understand) from time to time they do fail, as any piece of machinery rotating at thirty thousand revs per minute and cooking at over 600 degrees could be expected to happen.

      I understand you are having trouble locating these reports, thats because they are generally not available or investigations conducted. Why ? because almost all the time these failures do not result in fatalities or even aircraft damage,- usually because there is another engine to get you home. So what usually happens in these cases is they get swapped with another engine and the aircraft lives to fly another day. Most* of the time a report on the failure is submitted to the regulator (which is more used for statistical purposes if no harm done) and to the manufacturer.

      The regulators have allowed these aircraft to operate with passengers on IFR as an acceptable risk, like ANY type of flying. As stated previously there hasn't yet been as much of this flying taking place over the years (comparatively) to produce statistics that can take the level of risk over the "unacceptable" line, YET. Rest assured that SEIFR is being monitored very closely by those regulators who have approved it. If, as the practice becomes more popular, the accidents and fatalities start creeping through over time, you can be certain that the practice will be reviewed by these regulators. Maybe it will stay, maybe it will be canned.

      Like I said earlier, if there is a SEIFR accident in NZ and people die, - the practice will die off regardless of the regulator. NZ and NZ aviation is too small to brush it under the carpet and the traveling public will be too afraid of what they would then know can actually happen.

    17. One example of the EU March 2017 requirements for SEIFR in Europe:

      " CAT.OP.MPA.136 Routes and areas of operation — single-engined aeroplanes:
      Unless approved by the competent authority in accordance with Annex V (Part-SPA), Subpart L — SINGLE-ENGINED TURBINE AEROPLANE OPERATIONS AT NIGHT OR IN IMC (SET-IMC), the operator shall ensure that operations of single-engined aeroplanes are only conducted along routes, or within areas, where surfaces are available that permit a safe forced landing to be executed."

    18. So you're saying they are safe and due to their remarkable reliability, in the unlikely event of a failure, statistically the outcome is most likely very good?

      Furthermore, you're saying the regulators themselves are satisfied that reliability is so good, and the likelyhood of an engine failure resulting in injury or death so remote that it's an acceptable risk?

      Good enough for me! :-)

  3. Does it not all depend on whether SH1 opening south again taking the traffic away? As Sounds have said, a switch to 1900's is a big jump, requiring 2 pilots, etc. I just hope they weigh up all their options and don't over extend themselves. My parents are regular customer of Sounds Air, and never had any worries flying Wellington to Picton on a single engine.

  4. There will be more to this. Sounds got some PC12 with an underwritten agreement with Taupo council. We may never know for sure, but who is not to say that AirNZ (or JQ!) is not behind some of this...

  5. It will take them a long time to get the Beech 1900 probably a year away. So in the meantime they could enter in agreement with Origin to use one of their spare Jetstreams which also has 19 seats to meet the demand over the summer peak period. A much quicker option and get the 1900 later when its ready.

    1. It’s all way too late. The gate opened a year ago, the horse has already bolted.