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Volume 11, Number 6a -- February 7, 2005

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Aviation 
Safety

The Top Headlines From AVweb's Expanded, Illustrated News Coverage At AVweb's NewsWire.

STUCK YOKE ON CRASHED CHALLENGER?...
The pilot of a Challenger 600 bizjet that ran off the end of the runway at Teterboro Airport claims both he and his first officer were unable to pull the control yoke back, keeping them from raising the aircraft's nose and forcing him to abort the takeoff. And the pilot of a newer Challenger 601 that crashed off the end of a runway in Colorado in November reportedly said he too was unable to pull back on the yoke of the aircraft he was flying, resulting in the deaths of three people. According to The New York Times, the pilot in Wednesday's crash, John Kimberling, told NTSB investigators that with the airplane at takeoff speed on the runway, he could only pull back the yoke about an inch instead of the normal three to four inches of travel. More...

...ICE NOT A FACTOR?...
Although it hasn't been ruled out, airframe ice doesn't seem to be a factor in the crash. Witnesses, surveillance videos and ground-crew personnel all seem to indicate the aircraft was ice-free as it departed for Chicago with eight investment bankers, a flight attendant and two pilots aboard. According to Debbie Hersman of the NTSB, one aircraft had been de-iced about an hour before the Challenger departed. It was clear and cold at the time. The baggage on board will be weighed to determine if the plane was too heavy. Bombardier spokesman Leo Knaapen said the plane involved in the Colorado crash was overloaded. "That plane was too heavy, sir," Knaapen told The Associated Press. He wouldn't speculate on what might have caused the Teterboro incident. More...

...FRESH FODDER FOR TEB OPPONENTS
Wednesday's crash has given fresh ammunition to airport opponents and politicians who'd like to see operations at Teterboro curtailed. The airport is 12 miles from Manhattan and is consequently among the busiest GA airports in the U.S. On Thursday, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which operates Teterboro, decided to try to reduce the number of flights at the airport. "We are going to try to improve the safety and the quality of life for residents in and around Teterboro Airport," Acting New Jersey Governor Richard Codey told reporters after meeting with Port Authority officials. The Jersey officials reckon it's an odds game. More...

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CIRRUS "NEAR-DITCH" FERRY PILOT TELLS HIS STORY…
It had all the makings of an Ernest K. Gann plot or Steven Spielberg thriller: a lone pilot, over a cold, forbidding sea, defying the odds and a mysterious fuel leak, and bringing his ship home on fumes, the engine stopping on the rollout. If only it were true. "There was no emergency. I just did my job," Allen Walls, of Armstrong, B.C., Canada, told AVweb in an exclusive interview. Walls is co-owner of Ice Dragons International and one of the ferry contractors used by Cirrus dealers to deliver planes to far-flung places. You may recall the breathless media accounts on New Year's Eve (including ours) when the brand-new Cirrus SR22 he was flying to the Netherlands developed a fuel leak over the North Atlantic between Labrador and Ireland. "It was a faulty fuel cap. That's all it was," said Walls. More...

...A SLOW NEWS DAY...
However, news-starved reporters (New Year's Day is often regarded as the second slowest news day of the year, behind Easter Sunday) apparently didn't see it that way. By Jan. 2, Walls was either a full-blown hero, a "character" with a reputation for taking chances, or incompetent, depending on the account. The saga began when Walls noticed his right-wing fuel gauge dropping even though he was burning off the ferry tank. He shone a flashlight on the right wing and saw the telltale mist of fuel escaping the cap. By wagging the wings, he apparently sloshed the fuel enough to break up a pressurized air pocket within the tank and stop the leak. "I'd lost my reserves," he said. He was about 400 miles from Ireland. More...

...THE REAL STORY MAY BE BETTER
Walls calculated that he'd have eight gallons of fuel, or about 40 minutes of flying time, left when he landed in Ireland. He slipped into his survival suit, set the airplane up for best fuel economy and settled in for the flight. He also told Irish authorities that rather than go to his original destination, a GA airport at Galway, he'd head for the longer runway and better equipment at Shannon, about 30 miles farther. Nobody told the people in Galway, however, which was in the middle of a power blackout. Thinking they were the last hope for a pilot in a stricken aircraft, the good people of Galway lined the dark runway with cars, using their headlights to illuminate what they thought was Walls' lifeline. "I didn't even find out about it until three days later," said Walls. He continued to Shannon and landed. The engine did stop on the runway but Walls switched tanks and taxied in. More...

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LOCKHEED'S BETTER FSS, PREDICTS AOPA
Interactive briefings over the Internet, e-mail and PDA NOTAM alerts and guaranteed service parameters are all part of the plan as Lockheed Martin takes over the Automated Flight Service Station system. The company won the outsourcing competition for the system last Tuesday and, two days later, met with AOPA executives. "After spending about 90 minutes getting an advance look at a 21st century flight service station and asking hard questions, all I can say is 'Wow!'" said AOPA President Phil Boyer. Lockheed Martin will cut the number of FSSs from 58 to 21 but will introduce the Web and wireless technology to improve service. More...

ICE AND TURBULENCE MAPS FROM JEPPESEN
Just in case your FSS briefer misses something, technology continues to trot out new ways for pilots to help themselves. Jeppesen announced this week that it would offer icing and turbulence forecasting to its subscribers. The company says it's the first to offer the services on a worldwide basis. The maps were developed with Norman, Okla.-based Weather Decision Technologies and will be available through Jeppesen applications including JetPlan.com, JetPlanner, FliteStar and OPSControl. Jeppesen says both the icing and turbulence maps use intuitive color scales to show forecast areas of light, moderate and severe conditions. More...

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SNOWBIRD MIDAIR SURVIVING PILOT REFLECTS
While most of us could never imagine pulling an ejection handle, imagine what was going through Capt. Chuck Mallett's mind when he reached for it and it wasn't there. "I had time to think about my family and that I may never see them again," Mallett told reporters in his first interview since surviving a midair collision with a fellow Canadian Armed Forces Snowbird pilot in December. Capt. Miles Selby, of White Rock, British Columbia, died in the collision, which occurred near the Snowbirds home base of Moose Jaw, Sask., Canada, last Dec. 10. Mallett, who is now back flying with the team as lead solo, said thorough training and "amazing coincidences of luck" helped him walk away from the accident. More...

VIGILANTE AIR FORCE COMBATS ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS
A California man has assembled a vigilante air force and army to patrol an area of the Mexican border used frequently by illegal immigrants. James Gilchrist says that so far 16 pilots have offered themselves and their aircraft to help out the Minuteman Project, which he hopes will embarrass the government into stopping "the endless mob of illegal aliens streaming across our borders like a tsunami." The aircraft and up to 400 volunteers will patrol an area south of Tucson that is considered particularly prone to border jumping. Gilchrist said the volunteers will use binoculars, telescopes and night-vision gear to spot the aliens and report them to immigration officials. They won't try to turn them back themselves. More...

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GLOBALFLYER (STILL) WAITS FOR WEATHER, SPOTTERS SOUGHT
It's always nice to have a tailwind but when your destination is your departure point and you're only flying in one direction, it's pretty much necessary. Steve Fossett and the GlobalFlyer crew are awaiting more favorable weather to launch their around-the-world, solo nonstop flight. Earliest date will be Feb. 12 as they wait for a big jog in the jet stream to straighten out and give them the conditions they need to take off. Of particular concern is turbulence during the earlier hours of the flight since the weight of the fuel aboard will already be stressing the airframe to near its limits. Once the flight gets under way, the team is hoping for help in tracking the plane. More...

GA ANTHRAX SCARE
The words “prank” and “airplane” never mix but a couple of wags in Arizona, who undoubtedly had the best of intentions, could pay a heavy price for their afternoon of  “fun.” Joshua Parriott, 29, of Phoenix and his passenger James Klein, 42, of  Chandler, face three misdemeanor charges and could face federal prosecution after they allegedly dropped sacks of flour from an airplane over a wilderness area. According to the Scottsdale Republic, they were apparently doing it as a joke on friends engaged in a paintball game in the forest below. However, other residents of the area, who weren’t in on the joke (but were aware the date marked that of Iraq's elections)  thought the pilots were terrorists bent on poisoning the local water supply with anthrax. More...

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ON THE FLY...
GAMA chose ex-Air Force pilot as new president...
FAA decided not to sanction errant Northwest pilots...
Aerocomp flew its jet prototype home to a shorter runway. More...

AVWEB'S NEWSTIPS ADDRESS ...
Drop us a line. Heard something that 130,000 pilots might want to know about? If it caught your eye, it will probably interest someone else, too. Submit news tips via email to newstips@avweb.com. More...

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READER FEEDBACK ON AVWEB'S NEWS COVERAGE AND FEATURE ARTICLES:
http://www.avweb.com/avmail/

Reader mail this week about the mid-air collision between an Air Force trainer and a crop duster, the FSS outsourcing contract, flying with alcohol and much more. More...

NEW ARTICLES AND FEATURES ON AVWEB
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COLUMNS
As the Beacon Turns #86: Taking Safety Personally
How many aircraft manufacturers do you know send out safety notices to owners with titles like, "Flying at Night Can Be Fatal," and then provide company-subsidized safety classes to reduce accidents? AVweb's Michael Maya Charles found one -- Robinson Helicopter -- and really appreciated the course. More...

ATTENTION, CESSNA OWNERS AND PILOTS
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AVWEB'S BUSINESS AVFLASH
HAVE YOU SIGNED UP yet for AVweb's NO-COST twice monthly Business AVflash? Reporting on breaking news, Business AVflash also focuses on the companies, the products and the industry leaders that make headlines in the Business of Aviation. Business AVflash is a must read. Watch for a Business AVflash regular feature, TSA WATCH: GA IN THE "SPOTLIGHT". Sign up today at http://www.avweb.com/profile/ More...

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SHORT FINAL...
Overheard last April near Miami, Florida, just as Sun n' Fun was kicking in...

Pilot: ...request VFR flight following to Lakeland.

ATC: N123, unable at this time...

Pilot: Roger, unable. Any idea when can I expect it?

ATC: Try again ... this time next week. More...

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AVflash is a twice-weekly summary of the latest aviation news, articles, products, features and events featured on AVweb, the Internet's Aviation Magazine and News Service. http://www.avweb.com

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Today's issue written by News Writer Russ Niles:
http://www.avweb.com/contact/authors.html#rniles
AVweb's editorial team: http://avweb.com/contact/authors.html.

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