Nashua, New Hampshire - Magni M24 N327JD - 15th Jan 2020

loftus

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Yes interesting, probably the cause will never be known. I think a full on stroke is medically unlikely or he would still have physical evidence of this like paralysis / weakness, aphasia etc. Maybe a pre stroke situation like a transient ischaemic attack. Or maybe just messed up......
 

Vance

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Yes interesting, probably the cause will never be known. I think a full on stroke is medically unlikely or he would still have physical evidence of this like paralysis / weakness, aphasia etc. Maybe a pre stroke situation like a transient ischaemic attack. Or maybe just messed up......
Mark’s link is related but better.

The description of the mishap reads well outside of a simple stupid pilot trick to me.

The accident pilot (Jim D) posted about the incident on Pilots of America:

https://www.pilotsofamerica.com/community/threads/1-15-2020-gyrocopter-crash-kash.123813/

It reads like a wild ride to me.
 

jeffh

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I would imagine then that he either never prerotated and/or never pulled the stick back, which may have saved him. Seems like it would have ended far worse if he had managed to get airborne in his condition.
 

loftus

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I would imagine then that he either never prerotated and/or never pulled the stick back, which may have saved him. Seems like it would have ended far worse if he had managed to get airborne in his condition. (Weird, somehow my post came up logged in as a different newbie user)
 

thomasant

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The pilot does not remember the details after lining up on the runway. Interestingly, from the news video it looks like the two blades are quite straight and in alignment, except for some bent portions at the tip of one blade. Witnesses may be able to confirm if the rotors were turning (in which case the damage could have been worse).

Could he have have had a syncopal episode?

 

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Gyro28866

David McCutchen
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"
The pilot does not remember the details after lining up on the runway. Interestingly, from the news video it looks like the two blades are quite straight and in alignment, except for some bent portions at the tip of one blade. Witnesses may be able to confirm if the rotors were turning (in which case the damage could have been worse)."
.
Jeff and I were discussing this accident this morning. Looking at the one picture I saw, it appears the rotor my have not been turning or if it was it was turning very very slowly; the blade damage does not suggest the rotor was turning. Is he a fixed wing experienced pilot? If so, how many hours? How many Gyro hours and which type of machines?
It is not uncommon for an individual involved in an traumatic accident to, not remember much about the event, if anything. Bits and pieces might be remembered as time passes. If he had a medical issue/event aside from the spinal injuries, I wish him well and a full recovery.
I'm pondering; did he pull out and line up and when he was given permission to "takeoff" he applied power and did not "Prerotate", and just did not realize it. As possible a low time Gyro pilot and the added distractions of a Towered airport. Just had a "Senior Moment" as we all do sometimes, and the chain of events began to unfold from there.
Faa.gov lists him a third class medical in 2016 and basic med in 2018 with Sport Pilot Gyroplane in June 2019, and does not meet ICAO requirements.
that makes sense if he went to the factory to assist in the build.
I feel badly and a sense of loss for him and a beautiful machine.
Every time I hear about a Gyro related accident, I take it personally and feel a sense of loss in our community, because we all take the hit also; and the insurance underwriters will take another step back.
 

Ed L

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"
The pilot does not remember the details after lining up on the runway. Interestingly, from the news video it looks like the two blades are quite straight and in alignment, except for some bent portions at the tip of one blade. Witnesses may be able to confirm if the rotors were turning (in which case the damage could have been worse)."
.
Jeff and I were discussing this accident this morning. Looking at the one picture I saw, it appears the rotor my have not been turning or if it was it was turning very very slowly; the blade damage does not suggest the rotor was turning. Is he a fixed wing experienced pilot? If so, how many hours? How many Gyro hours and which type of machines?
It is not uncommon for an individual involved in an traumatic accident to, not remember much about the event, if anything. Bits and pieces might be remembered as time passes. If he had a medical issue/event aside from the spinal injuries, I wish him well and a full recovery.
I'm pondering; did he pull out and line up and when he was given permission to "takeoff" he applied power and did not "Prerotate", and just did not realize it. As possible a low time Gyro pilot and the added distractions of a Towered airport. Just had a "Senior Moment" as we all do sometimes, and the chain of events began to unfold from there.
Faa.gov lists him a third class medical in 2016 and basic med in 2018 with Sport Pilot Gyroplane in June 2019, and does not meet ICAO requirements.
that makes sense if he went to the factory to assist in the build.
I feel badly and a sense of loss for him and a beautiful machine.
Every time I hear about a Gyro related accident, I take it personally and feel a sense of loss in our community, because we all take the hit also; and the insurance underwriters will take another step back.
I’m not saying this didn’t happen. One big thought pops up to me, though: how could one go from no rotor rotation to flyable rotation (he apparently got into the air about 10 feet) at 100mph without blade flapping first? A serious question.

Second, it’s plausible he could have pulled on to the runway without prerotating but in the Magnis, especially taught by Dayton, as he was, we NEVER initiate prerotation on the runway. We always enter the runway after doing a runup followed by prerotation and, in fact, typically use the spinning rotor as a brake, varying the braking with rotor pitch until lines up and ready to go. I never MOVE with less than 150rrpm, let alone get on the runway.

But it’s plausible, I suppose.

My understanding is he’s a very low-time gyro pilot with even less FW time (no FW rating).
 

DavePA11

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I always spin up once on the runway. There’s no issue with taking 30 seconds to spin up and take off. It’s safer this way in my opinion. Witnessed gyro taxi off the runway uncontrolled while spinning up rotors.
 

Ed L

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I always spin up once on the runway. There’s no issue with taking 30 seconds to spin up and take off. It’s safer this way in my opinion. Witnessed gyro taxi off the runway uncontrolled while spinning up rotors.
While I understand doing so is almost a requirement for many gyros, particularly with “rigid” prerotators such as on the Autogyros, etc., it seems to me to be far less than ideal for several reasons.

If one is flying from their own personal field, or one where only gyros fly, then cool (I suppose). Anywhere else and one runs the risk of interfering with other departing and landing aircraft. Yes, I know there are towered fields that are accustomed to local doing so but that’s true “toleration” (acceptance of some level of imperfection), IMHO. It’s akin to someone doing a 30-second runup on the runway centerline. Imagine a busy field where everyone - including FWs - did that. If gyros ever grow to be significant in numbers here in the US, I bet that will change.

As for taxiing off on a taxiway uncontrolled while spinning up, that could just as easily have happened on the runway - and I guarantee it was pilot error. It could at least as easily happen during runup, where at least in my Magni I’m using higher engine RPM/power than rotor spin-up.

Just my personal opinions

/Ed
 

loftus

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While I understand doing so is almost a requirement for many gyros, particularly with “rigid” prerotators such as on the Autogyros, etc., it seems to me to be far less than ideal for several reasons.

If one is flying from their own personal field, or one where only gyros fly, then cool (I suppose). Anywhere else and one runs the risk of interfering with other departing and landing aircraft. Yes, I know there are towered fields that are accustomed to local doing so but that’s true “toleration” (acceptance of some level of imperfection), IMHO. It’s akin to someone doing a 30-second runup on the runway centerline. Imagine a busy field where everyone - including FWs - did that. If gyros ever grow to be significant in numbers here in the US, I bet that will change.

As for taxiing off on a taxiway uncontrolled while spinning up, that could just as easily have happened on the runway - and I guarantee it was pilot error. It could at least as easily happen during runup, where at least in my Magni I’m using higher engine RPM/power than rotor spin-up.

Just my personal opinions

/Ed
Agree with you completely; absolutely no problem in an Autogyro machine either
 

Vance

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I’m not saying this didn’t happen. One big thought pops up to me, though: how could one go from no rotor rotation to flyable rotation (he apparently got into the air about 10 feet) at 100mph without blade flapping first? A serious question.

Second, it’s plausible he could have pulled on to the runway without prerotating but in the Magnis, especially taught by Dayton, as he was, we NEVER initiate prerotation on the runway. We always enter the runway after doing a runup followed by prerotation and, in fact, typically use the spinning rotor as a brake, varying the braking with rotor pitch until lines up and ready to go. I never MOVE with less than 150rrpm, let alone get on the runway.

But it’s plausible, I suppose.

My understanding is he’s a very low-time gyro pilot with even less FW time (no FW rating).
A quote from the accident pilot. "I'm the pilot. Remember taxiing to the run up area then getting permission to take off, then aligning at the runway threshold. Then, nothing until awaking in the emergency room. They said I went 1000m down the middle, approached 100mph veered onto the grass, then when i hit a slight ramp at taxiway C , that threw me into the air and then tumbled about 200m more. Broke t5and c9 and a small bone in my foot. The plane can get into ground effect at 30mph. Do not know how it stayed aligned and on the ground until I hit the bump."

It doesn't read to me like the gyroplane was flying.

I have found people often don't remember a crash even if they didn't have a medical problem.

It is nice that he was not more seriously injured.

It is a shame about the Magni M24.

When I call ahead to a new to me towered airport the most common request I get is please don't delay on the runway for takeoff.

At my local airports when I have a client with an aircraft that requires a delay on the runway it has been requested that I always let them know there will be a delay on the runway for rotor spool up.

They are trying to sequence things and how long I am going to be on the runway has to do with how they manage the sequence. They can't launch me with a heavy on a three mile final.
 

Ed L

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It doesn't read to me like the gyroplane was flying.
A not unreasonable interpretation. Hopefully the investigation can determine if the rotor was spinning at the time of the crash.

If he tried to take off without the rotor spinning that would be a remarkable departure from training, especially in a Magni and having been trained by Dayton, but certainly possible
 

Tyger

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Doesn't the 100mph figure seem a bit high? That's pretty good acceleration, going 0-100mph, on the ground, in just 0.6 miles. And if I ran my car into a median going 100mph (and getting airborne) I'd think the chances of survival would be pretty small, never mind in a li'l three-wheeled gyroplane. How/who estimated that speed?
 

Vance

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I have found without rotor drag an 850 pound gyroplane with over 100 horsepower accelerates pretty quickly.

With 141 horsepower I would expect 100 miles per hour would come in a fairly short distance.

In my experience speed estimates from witnesses may be unreliable.
 

Vance

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What distance would you estimate, Vance?
KASH runway 14/32 is 6,000 X 100 feet.

With no rotor drag I am confident an 850 pound gyroplane with 141 horsepower could reach 100 miles per hour in less than a third of that distance.

I suspect if I was watching I would be lucky to estimate the speed within 70%.

The pilot doesn’t remember and witnesses are unreliable and inaccurate.

In my opinion it is doubtful we will find out exactly what happened.

From the pictures it does not appear to me the rotor was near flight rpm when it encountered terrain.

I mention this acceleration because a common error my fixed wing clients make is to center the stick (reducing rotor drag) and open the throttle imagining we are doing a touch and go in a fixed wing aircarft.

I have to be quick to reduce throttle before trouble ensues.

Sometimes the client ignores my request for the aircraft controls and resists my reduction in throttle and we are very quickly going too fast with the rotor slowed down to use it to reduce speed.

I invariably find this memorable and disquieting when it is time for them to solo.
 
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