Another gyro falls victim to powerlines

Ben Harrison

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This is a Tango that just crashed in Russia, two fatalities.

 
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Resasi

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How terribly sad. Comisterations to family and friends.
 

Tyger

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"Falls victim"... As if the power lines were a predator, just lying in wait.
I guess some folks assume power lines never cross rivers, or something...
 

DavePA11

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Watch for towers and poles since wires are hard to see. It’s easy to get distracted too when flying low. Very sad.
 

Tyger

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Well exactly... that big electrical tower in the background would definitely have given most of us a big clue that there would be wires in the area.
I, for one, would definitely have wanted to be well above the height of any such towers I could see.
Here's a similar accident in the US, less than two years ago:
 
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DavePA11

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Friend in trike was taking another friend in gyro on a local tour along a path he likes to fly low for fun. The gyro pilot was following him for a while, but then got in front of him and came up to a nice river. The trike pilot mentioned that he had flown it many times and no bridges or wires up ahead. They talked on the radio. So the gyro pilot flew down above the water having fun, but then saw power lines just ahead crossing the river and had to climb quickly to avoid them. The trike friend apologized since he thought they were further up the river.

Point of story is don’t always believe your friends in the flying adventures and keep good watch out for power lines, poles, and places where they might cross rivers (narrow spots) or valleys. There are a lot of power lines around quarries too if you land there. Often between barns. Front range of mountains above highways. Yeah Tyger - those towers are obvious so something was distracting the pilot...
 
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Tyger

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I took a (airplane) CFI for a flight in my gyro this summer in Pennsylvania. We flew around his normal training area, which consisted mainly of farmers' fields. He said a lot of these were Amish farms, but not all (the Amish call the others "English" farms). He said "If given a choice, which sort of farm would you rather land at in an emergency, Amish or English?" I said I wasn't sure. He said, "Always pick an Amish farm... there won't be any power lines!"
 

schmoe90

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In a flight with an instructor, he asked why I went for a field rather than the dirt road along the edge during a practice engine failure - a lot of the roads near me have power lines running along the fence line :(
 

Tyger

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I find that most roads where I fly have power lines along one side (not to mention trees). Probably the biggest exceptions are interstates and similar large highways. These also have power lines crossing them fairly infrequently.
 

JETLAG03

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Always sad to hear of the death of another air adventurer no matter what the circumstances, death is a rather heavy penalty to pay.

In the trike community there are lots of videos, I myself have posted a few. Many of these videos include low fast flight giving the impression that the pilot has "thrown caution to the wind". In my case, and that of many other trikers with whom I communicate frequently these short videos are the result of many many passes each slightly lower than the previous and in different directions looking carefully for obstacles such as wires, more importantly, not the wires themselves but their pylons, posts and the shadows of the pylons and posts. If I am following someone else I am normally slightly higher than the lead craft, one to avoid their turbulence but mainly to give me a little more margin of security.

As @DavePA11 mentioned, I too do not have total confidence in the risk judgement of another pilot, I'm a bit of a coward.

phil
 

XXavier

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With today's advanced and cheap electronics, a radar detector of wires shouldn't be difficult to build...
 

Brian Jackson

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With today's advanced and cheap electronics, a radar detector of wires shouldn't be difficult to build...
I don't believe you'd get a strong enough return of any signal bounced off of a wire. I can't see there being enough frontal area to reflect sufficiently. However I don't fully understand the intricacies of radar systems.
 

XXavier

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I don't believe you'd get a strong enough return of any signal bounced off of a wire. I can't see there being enough frontal area to reflect sufficiently. However I don't fully understand the intricacies of radar systems.
It's a good conductor, and the current induced by the radar pulse should resonate quite well... Perhaps we have a radar expert in the forum... I don't know much, either, about the intricacies of radar...
 

Brian Jackson

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It's a good conductor, and the current induced by the radar pulse should resonate quite well... Perhaps we have a radar expert in the forum... I don't know much, either, about the intricacies of radar...
You got me thinking so I ran across this:
I'm at work so haven't had a chance to pore over it, but your idea sounds plausible from what I glanced in this report.
 

Tyger

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I think all that could really do is tell you if there are wires in the general vicinity... which there almost always are!
 

XXavier

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I've been googling around, and it appears that there's some research being done in that field...


 

Georgi

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Many, many years ago I wanted to get (somehow) digital PG&E power greed and overlay it over a digital map, but the Lazyness took me a hostage and kept for 30 years.
 
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