Author Topic: Some folks crashed a 727 in desert... just for the hell of it! (not really, but)  (Read 1613 times)

Offline Fabo

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Offline happylanding

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Really interesting share, Fabo! Thank you!

Does that mean that sitting in business is more dangerous than economy???

Anyhow, I'd like to understand better what did the pilot do since the information seems quite enigmatic "They apparently used a pilot and some form of radio control device operated by a chase plane to guide it during the final moments. The pilot jumped out (D. B. Cooper style?) before the final descent into the ground".

Any more news about it?
I give that landing a 9 . . . on the Richter scale.

Offline Oddball

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Have heard about the FAA crashing one to test a new type of jet fuel that was meant not to catch fire, but they crashed it short of the actual touch down spot and the test went wrong since the fuel still fire balled. That was done by Radio Control from the ground.
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Offline madpilot44

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yeah, but that NASA test was a 707...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOwF0E-Wc3c&feature=fvst
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z5YJ8cqGaWM&feature=relmfu

kind of anticlimactic ending, but I guess that's what they were going for...
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Offline Rooster Cruiser

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Actually, this 'remote desert location' isn't all that remote.  Laguna Salada is a dry lakebed just south of the US/Mexico border and is easily reached by car if you know your way around down there.  It is south of the border highway that connects Mexicali to Tijuana.  I have flown over that god-forsaken patch of sun-baked playa more times than I care to recall.

It was a pretty good choice for a crash test location.  Uninhabited desert dry lakebed that is very close to two major metropolitan areas in Mexico and the USA.  However, the manner in which they operated this test has me scratching my head at the wisdom of the Discovery Channel producers.  It has also drawn the ire of the FAA from what I have heard.  A Boeing 727 is a three-pilot airplane (Captain, First Officer, and Flight Engineer).  A special use permit would be required in the USA to fly such a big airplane single pilot, as it was built long ago in the days before glass cockpits, FADECs, or any other type of digital automation.  But then to have the guy parachute out!?!?  YGBSM!!!   ::eek:: ::unbelieveable::  That is extraordinarily dangerous!  Remember, DB Cooper was never found and likely died when he did bail out.

When NASA did their test back in 1984 they had enough resources at hand that they were able to install a full remote control package into the Boeing 720 (not 707) that they crashed.  They had no need to find a "Cowboy" pilot daring enough to parachute out of their crash test plane at god-only-knows how fast a speed.  What the producers of this show did (and the PIC) was reckless bordering on criminal reckless endangerment.  What would have happened if the remote control malfunctioned and the plane went uncontrolled into a populated area?  There's over a million people that live in Mexicali, and several million more across the mountains in Tijuana and San Diego.  Sure, that would make for some REALLY dramatic TV footage!   ::rambo::

Small wonder they opted to do this in Mexico.  There's no way the FAA would have approved it.

RC
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