Horror Stories 2019

Flying has its scares and there are times when you think something horribly wrong could have happened…or maybe they did. These are just a few stories of things that go bump in the turbulence…

1. Descent into the Unknown

An instructor took the controls, treating the 3 way transfer rule as more of a suggestion. After demonstrating a couple maneuvers, he instructed me to fly to a nearby NOLF. We began our descent. Around 90 seconds later, we’re screaming down and the instructor says, “Your descent is getting pretty aggressive,” noting that we’re doing almost a 40-45° AOB and 15-20° nose down turn. My quick response was a panicked, “Sir are you not flying?” After a pause that seemed like forever, we finally did a three way exchange of controls. Very little was said the rest of the flight. We did our bounces and went home. I don’t think we spoke about it after. He took controls at 6-8k and if he hadn’t, I probably would have let us plow into the earth. #crm #assertiveness”

2. The Hold

It’s Saturday and you should be sitting at a beach somewhere. Instead, your squadron decided your weekend doesn’t matter and instead gave you your instrument check. The IP threw every FAR/AIM question he can think of at you. You’ve discussed every airspace in depth. You’ve safely flown three kinds of approaches on parameters. All that is left is holding. It’s been hammered on the last few flights and always makes your stomach take a nosedive. Nothing has gone overtly wrong yet, so maybe it won’t be so bad this time. The entry into holding somehow went as planned.

So far so good. You list off the six T’s repeatedly, praying you don’t miss one. After adjusting for the wind, you complete another lap, sweating as you recite more T’s and struggle to stay on course and timing. After a few more laps, you check the clock. 15 minutes… It must be over soon. Winds shift, and you try to remain clam as you pretend to know what you’re doing. You get the correction in and on course just in time for the turn. Another few laps in holding go by. 23 minutes… This can’t be happening. The check ride should be ending right around now. You try to stay focused but your mind wanders.

The six T’s become like breathing as you blank out in the monotony. 30 minutes of holding pass by, and you finally get released from your agony. You land and realize you’ve now had a 2 hour check ride, and you are still muttering the six T’s under your breath.

3. How Far Will It Go?

There you are, coming in hot from your Aero check ride. You had the perfect departure, flew course rules flawlessly, nailed your comms and even did a barrel roll for Chesty. Now all you have to do is land. You roll out from Waldo and see the runway–then you second guess everything. Your IP hasn’t said a word the whole flight, so you must be fine… right? Then it hits you. The whirring of the prop fades away. Your breathing gets heavy. All you can hear is your heart pounding out of your chest. To your horror, you realize you’ve set up for the wrong runway…and your IP hasn’t said a thing.

In a last ditch effort to salvage your otherwise immaculate flight, you execute a discontinued entry. “There’s no WAY things could get any worse.” Wrong.

Out of the corner of your eye you see a bird zooming towards your prop arc. In a panic, you yank your stick one last time for Chesty in hopes of avoiding the bird, but more importantly, avoiding a pink sheet. Your IP screams and now you’re certain you’ve failed…

How long was the IP going to let you set up for the wrong runway? How long was the IP going to wait before pointing out the bird? Did the IP even see the bird? Did I fail my check ride?

4. Minute To Live

This happened while on station at night and investigating a possible contact. As we descended to get visual we passed through a cloud layer. At about 1,000ft AGL, while still in the clouds, our VSI went from about -200ft/min to about -1,500ft/min: Minute to live. I caught it, took controls and climbed away. I asked the 3P what had happened and he had no clue about his rate of descent

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Doerr Comic

Your only legal addiction, Doerr Comic provides a fun and hilarious take on Naval Aviation training. The Doerr Team believes in improving the morale of all who help train the future of Naval Aviation.

Doerr Comic is owned by Off the Grid Games LLC

© 2018-2020 Off the Grid Games LLC