Practicing engine failures
Mixtures, props, throttles – full forward! Flaps up, gear up, boost pumps. Identify, verify, secure…
Everybody remember their engine failure training?
These engines sure like to “fail” every year during flight reviews and currency checks, don’t they?!
Is it just me, or does it seem like at Roost-Air, they seem to fail year-round for a variety of reasons, one of them being “discussed” in the second panel? Has anyone in here ever had an actual engine failure? I’m sure those make for good stories.
Here is my story:
I got to be part of an engine failure when I was a young mechanic on a test flight actually. We were just taking off, climbing through roughly 400 feet when the left engine failed on a Cessna 414. I don’t remember what exactly caused it, but it had something to do with the turbo and the ducting that caused the engine to roll back to idle and stay there. We were working on an entirely different issue at the time, that required a test flight, and I was tagging along to write down some numbers, and…well… to be in the air, of course.
The pilot, a high time ex-navy guy, reacted immediately, and correctly, and it took both of us to stand on the right pedal to keep the thing straight initially. He brought us around to downwind to land it back where we started. I remember using both of my feet and him yelling to not take my foot off the pedal. We made it, more or less sticking to the standard pattern, followed by a smooth landing that felt like any other. He then just jumped out, calmly said “yeah, you need to fix that”, and just walked back into his office.
It didn’t hit me how critical the whole situation actually was until many years later, when I did my multi engine training. Losing the critical engine, on take-off, in a Cessna 414, is considered one of the worst-case scenarios in light twin propeller aircraft flying. I guess, ignorance was bliss in my case.
But ever since my own multi training, I have always wondered if my pilot that day didn’t just walk calmly back to the office, closed the door, and then poured himself the biggest glass of scotch he ever had. I would have….