08 May 2010

Was it really that bad????

This relates to the Beech 1900 incident of 9 April 2010... http://3rdlevelnz.blogspot.com/2010/04/eagle-beech-makes-emergency-landing.html

So this is where I'm going to die

Source : http://www.northernadvocate.co.nz/local/news/so-this-is-where-im-going-to-die/3912503/

"So this is where I'm going to die, in a bay in New Zealand, what will the folks back home think?" Just seconds into his flight to Whangarei from Auckland last Friday American visitor Chuck Weikel knew something was "seriously wrong" when loud banging started coming from the back of the 8.10am flight. The rear cargo door of the 19-seat Eagle Air Beech 1900D plane, with nine passengers and two pilots on board, had opened during the take-off from Auckland Airport and the plane had to make an emergency landing. The aircraft landed without any problems, but the five minutes or so in between were a worrying time for Mr Weikel and his fellow passengers. He wondered how the door could have come open and suspects it had simply "not been closed properly before take off". "We took off then almost immediately after the wheels went up and we started gaining a bit of speed you could hear a slow banging from behind," Mr Weikel said. "Then it got louder and it was BANG! BANG! BANG! twice a second. At the time I didn't know what it was, but I thought to myself 'there's something seriously wrong here'. "When it banged there were air pressure waves coming into the cabin that you could feel as the door opened and shut. The whole thing was weird." The pilot's voice came over the loud speaker, but he could not be heard because of the loud banging, which added to the drama. "There wasn't any panic that I saw, although one woman was a bit upset, and the pilots were both so calm throughout it all," he said. "I had a very near miss on the road [in the US several years ago] and just like that time I was thinking 'so this is where I'm going to die, in a bay in New Zealand, what will the folks back home think'?" The Maryland native and ex- US military man has flown all around the world, but reckons Friday's flight was his worst experience yet. He set off from Dulles Airport, Washington, on Wednesday last week, US time, arriving in Auckland about 4.45am on Friday, meaning a few hours wait before the 8.10am flight to Whangarei. Mr Weikel thought it strange once aboard the plane that the pilot said they would be playing a safety announcement before taking off, but none was played. "The whole thing [process] seemed fairly loose. When we landed and I went to the Air NZ desk to say "I'm off the flight that had to make an emergency landing', they said 'what emergency landing'," he said. "But it did help with my jet lag. I was pretty tired after 24 to 26 hours of flying, but I was quite lucid after all that. There was a big sense of relief when we landed." The ordeal has not put Mr Weikel off flying, in fact he leaves tomorrow to fly back to the States. Transport Accident Investigation Commission spokesman Peter Northcote said two investigators were looking into the incident. Air New Zealand public affairs spokesman Mark Street did not return calls to comment on Mr Weikel's concerns.

1 comment:

  1. Should really not have been any great danger.
    Most (All?) pilot training includes 'what if' scenarios, such as an open door in flight - mine most certainly did.
    I would also be certain that the initial type testing of the Beech would cover such an eventuality, to ensure that the aircraft would remain undamaged and controllable in such a situation.
    Upsetting but not really dangerous.