Tuesday, June 03, 2014

Small plane nearly takes out sunbather

In Germany, a small Piper comes in a bit short and misses a sunbather on the beach by inches.

The fence was not so lucky.

OK, I've made my share of screwed-up landings in my day, but seriously, how do you do something like this? I mean, I'm thinking that at some point on that approach it should dawn on Baron von Richthofen there that he needs to add some power and climb up just a bit.

My first thought is that he's lucky that he's not in the US of A, because the FAA would be up his ass wearing hiking boots right about now. But then again, he's in Germany, so he might wind up wishing that he was here before they're through with him.


  1. Gotta hand it to the guy on the ground, if he'd have flinched or looked up his day would have been REAL bad.

    1. An idea how this happened; convection. More over water, less over white sand.

      One hot day landing at Page, AZ., the approach was over miles of red sand. The last quarter mile to the runway was white, washed, gravel. Felt like the bottom dropped out. Made the runway just fine but have never forgotten the experience.

  2. OK, Why in the world, would anyone sunbathe on a beach less than 20 yards from the end of a runway? Do they not realize, that aircraft with emergencies land there? Do they nor realize that pilots with limited skills land there? Do they not realize that aircraft without problems pull the throttles to idle there, potentially starving the engine? NOTHING good happens at the approach end of the runway. The best thing that happens is nothing!

  3. No TV antennae were harmed in the making of this video.

    I couldn't resist...

  4. Ever seen that airport on St. Maarten in the Leeward Islands, where the big air transport jets come in over a short piece of beach like that? Princess Juliana International Airport. Go look it up with Google or Bing or whatever and look at the images.

    I've seen pictures of what looks like people making a game of being able to stand up in the jet wash. And LARGE air transport airplanes with their wheels maybe 10 feet above the ground. I think I recall a plane coming in a bit low and dragging the fence down the runway, sorta like this guy.

  5. How stupid can that sunbather be? Who would sunbath right on the edge of a landing strip?

    I don't fault the flier, I fault the idiot who parked their butt right there on the edge of landing zone.

    1. Paul, I agree, re: the sunbather, but even if he wasn't there, that pilot came in way too short. Hit a fat guy, hut a rock, or just hit the sand, it's all the same, really. His approach should have put him down on or past the runway numbers, not outside the airport fence.

  6. Yes you are right, it was a short landing and if that fence had been a brick wall that would be the end of the flier.

    Both were idiots.

    Oh, my grandfather was a owner of a oil field pipe manufacturing place around here in WW2. He had his own plane.

    He took off in 1944 to go check some oil stuff, my mother being 9 years old wanted to go. He said no. Well 400 feet up he hit what I hear is called a 'air pocket' (is it true or did he just stall out??)

    Anyway he augured in and that was the end of him.

    Say, I am reading a book, "Up And At 'Em" written by Colonel Harold E. Hartney, group commander of the 1st Pursuit Group in WW1.

    Written in 1940, he went into combat with just 9 hours of solo (fought with the British before the U.S. got into WW1.)

    It is an amazing story.