PPL in IMC

Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

I've often wonder what happens in real life when the non-instrument rated
pilot making a cross country VFR flight suddenly finds himself in IFR
weather.

I know he's supposed to do his weather homework before the flight, but
sometimes God has other plans for the weather and it closes in around him.

So, now he's IMC and really a hazard to everything in the sky... what does
he do?

Question 2: After it's all over and he's on the ground do they pull his
ticket?


Dallas
21 answers Last reply
More about tomshardware
  1. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    "Dallas" <Cybnorm@spam_me_not.Hotmail.Com> wrote in message
    news:1ZOte.7358$NX4.2094@newsread1.news.pas.earthlink.net...
    > I've often wonder what happens in real life when the non-instrument rated
    > pilot making a cross country VFR flight suddenly finds himself in IFR
    > weather.
    >
    > I know he's supposed to do his weather homework before the flight, but
    > sometimes God has other plans for the weather and it closes in around him.
    >
    > So, now he's IMC and really a hazard to everything in the sky... what does
    > he do?
    >
    > Question 2: After it's all over and he's on the ground do they pull his
    > ticket?
    >
    >
    > Dallas
    >
    >

    Seeing as continued flight into IMC is very high (if not the highest) on the
    list of "Pilot Killers" this is a great question...

    Rule #1 - Always get as complete a weather briefing as possible before
    taking off (especially winds aloft...if they're really different than
    briefed than chaces are the weather will be different too...)

    Rule #2 - Stay aware of weather conditions as you proceed along your route
    (Visually, via other traffic ahead on your route (listen...) FSS, ATC and
    Flight Watch)

    Rule #3 - If weather begins to deteriorate, formulate an alternate plan
    (consider all alternatives then turn, climb, descend, etc...but do something
    to avoid IMC !) BE AWARE OF RISING TERRAIN!!!

    Rule #3a-Know how to make a standard rate 180 degree turn...this should be
    your first move...simply turn around and GO BACK to VFR weather.

    Rule #4 - If you can't avoid or get out of IMC, contact ATC immediately,
    confess your situation (you can even declare an emergency*) and comply with
    all ATC instructions...above all else...fly the plane.

    Rule #4a-Get on the gagues RIGHT NOW and trust what they are telling you.
    Do not trust what your body, eyes, inner ear, etc are telling you (avoid
    spatial disorientation...)
    (Addendum to Rule #4a - Get recurrent "Hood Work" so you know how to
    interpret what your gagues are telling you...and how to make that 180 turn
    via instruments.)

    *There might be paperwork after the fact, but it's better than hitting
    something.

    Confess and Comply should keep you out of the doghouse, but you might have
    some explaining to do. I've yet to see any weather that can't be avoided in
    the most basic way and that's to NOT GO in the first place.

    Jay Beckman
    PP-ASEL
    Chandler, AZ
  2. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    Jay wrote:

    > *There might be paperwork after the fact, but it's better than hitting
    > something.

    Jay, repeat after me: "There will be absolutely no paperwork if I
    declare an emergency (in the US). There will be absolutely no
    paperwork if I declare an emergency. There will be absolutely no
    paperwork if I declare an emergency."

    http://www.avweb.com/news/columns/182683-1.html

    (towards the bottom for one source that debunks this myth)

    This myth is the aviation equivilant of the urban legend that "Mikey of
    Life Cereal fame died when he attempted to eat Pop Rocks while drinking
    a Pepsi." (a US urban legend from the late-1970s/early 1980s)

    > I've yet to see any weather that can't be avoided in
    > the most basic way and that's to NOT GO in the first place.

    Hmmm... Arizona has how many IFR days per year? :-)

    Unless a pilot is being *super, super* conservative by only flying on
    CAVU days, there will be weather conditions in the Northeast US where
    one could be VMC one minute, then IMC the next without the forecast so
    much as hinting that it would happen. Think flying west, an 8
    mile-visibility haze, a setting sun, and a benign stratus cloud layer.


    --
    Peter


    --
    Peter
  3. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    > So, now he's IMC and really a hazard to everything in the sky... what does
    > he do?

    Climb, confess, comply.

    Immediately begin a climb to get away from terrain and man-made
    obstacles, call ATC to declare an emergency immediately and confess
    that you are a VFR pilot who just entered IMC, then comply with their
    instructions.

    The private pilot curriculum in the US requires 3 hours of instrument
    training, as well as demonstrated instrument abilities on the
    checkride, for the sole purpose of giving a non-instrument rated pilot
    some level of comfort with the instruments.

    If I were an instructor, I would make it part of my personal curriculum
    to take a student pilot into the clouds (under my IFR flight plan) to
    demonstrate what it is like inside a cloud. I recall coming out of my
    PPL training thinking that if I fly into a cloud, I am immediately dead
    (a completely false assumption to teach a student pilot). This added
    some anxiety the first time I flew into a cloud for instrument
    training.

    > Question 2: After it's all over and he's on the ground do they pull his
    > ticket?

    No, not in the US.

    --
    Peter
  4. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    > what does he do?

    Oh, some other thoughts. If the aircraft has an autopilot, even if it
    is just a wing leveler, the non-instrument pilot should engage it.
    Let the AP turn the aircraft and keep it level while IMC. It has been
    surmised that if John Kennedy, Jr. engaged his AP when he flew out over
    the ocean, he would probably not have spiraled into the ocean.

    Also, in the eastern US, there are very few places that do not have
    radar coverage (radar outages and lower to the ground excluded). Thus,
    as long as an aircraft has an operational transponder, it will not be a
    hazard to other aircraft for very long, as ATC will vector IFR aircraft
    around a VFR aircraft.

    In the western US, there are many places that do not have radar
    coverage and, honestly, I suppose a VFR aircraft in this airspace would
    be a hazard in IMC.

    --
    Peter
  5. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    On Tue, 21 Jun 2005 07:03:25 GMT, "Dallas"
    <Cybnorm@spam_me_not.Hotmail.Com> wrote:

    >I've often wonder what happens in real life when the non-instrument rated
    >pilot making a cross country VFR flight suddenly finds himself in IFR
    >weather.
    >
    >I know he's supposed to do his weather homework before the flight, but
    >sometimes God has other plans for the weather and it closes in around him.
    >
    >So, now he's IMC and really a hazard to everything in the sky... what does
    >he do?
    >
    >Question 2: After it's all over and he's on the ground do they pull his
    >ticket?
    >
    >
    >Dallas
    >


    Probably not necessary to pull the ticket of someone that is
    deceased.

    Bob
  6. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    Dallas,
    That is a situation that kills a lot of VFR pilots. But there are some
    things that a responsible VFR pilot can do. First of all, a pilot is
    required to log a certain amount of time "under the hood" while taking
    flight training. This "hood time" is also part of the flight test that an
    FAA examiner gives a pilot during their final flight test while becoming
    certified, even for VFR flight. This insures that a VFR pilot is at least
    capable of controlling the aircraft while in IFR conditions. A part of that
    hood time is also devoted to something called "recovery from unusual
    attitudes". This helps a pilot learn to look at the instruments, and tell
    what needs to be done to recover the aircraft without using outside visual
    cues. Of course the obvious answer to your question is to never put yourself
    in the position of becoming trapped in IFR conditions if you are only VFR
    rated. But of course this is not a perfect world, and sometimes
    circumstances happen that are out of a VFR pilots control. So what can a VFR
    pilot do if they find themselves in IFR conditions? First of all, execute a
    180-degree turn and try flying back into VFR conditions. If this is not
    possible, then get on the radio and call for some help. You can use the
    Center frequency, the Emergency frequency, the local FSS frequency, the
    Flight Watch frequency, or if you are already in contact with ATC you can
    advise them of your situation and ask for help. A pilot will never be
    refused help from any of these agencies, because their number 1 priority is
    the safety of the aircraft in their jurisdiction. A good pilot isn't going
    to be worried about getting their ticket pulled, a good pilot is going to be
    concerned with getting themselves, their passengers, and their aircraft down
    safely. The hardest part for the pilot is to accept that you are in over
    your head, and to confess that you need help.
    Not all cases of VFR pilots who ask for help when stuck in IFR
    conditions result in the pilot having his ticket pulled. As I said earlier,
    sometimes things happen that are out of the pilots control. The only time
    that a VFR pilot will have his license revoked (or suspended) is if the FAA
    determines that the said pilot had demonstrated "willful disregard" for the
    regulations and procedures that regulate VFR/IFR flight, or that they
    knowingly violated said regulations and procedures.
    Personally, I would rather lose my license but still be alive, rather
    than try to continue into IFR conditions that I am not qualified for, not
    seek any help, and wind up....dead.
    Incidentally, a pilot isn't just "supposed to do his weather homework
    before the flight". FAA regulations specifically REQUIRE a pilot to check
    the weather at the point of departure, along the intended flight route, and
    at the intended destination. If something bad happens during the flight, and
    the FAA can prove that the pilot didn't check the weather prior to the
    flight, then the FAA can suspend or revoke the pilots license. Hope this
    helps...

    Randy L.

    "Dallas" <Cybnorm@spam_me_not.Hotmail.Com> wrote in message
    news:1ZOte.7358$NX4.2094@newsread1.news.pas.earthlink.net...
    > I've often wonder what happens in real life when the non-instrument rated
    > pilot making a cross country VFR flight suddenly finds himself in IFR
    > weather.
    >
    > I know he's supposed to do his weather homework before the flight, but
    > sometimes God has other plans for the weather and it closes in around him.
    >
    > So, now he's IMC and really a hazard to everything in the sky... what does
    > he do?
    >
    > Question 2: After it's all over and he's on the ground do they pull his
    > ticket?
    >
    >
    > Dallas
    >
    >
  7. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    Randy wrote:

    > Incidentally, a pilot isn't just "supposed to do his weather homework
    > before the flight". FAA regulations specifically REQUIRE a pilot to check
    > the weather at the point of departure, along the intended flight route, and
    > at the intended destination.

    Good points, Randy.

    One question: Sincerely I do not mean to put you on the spot, but do
    you have the specific Part 91 US regulation that states this? The
    only regulation that I could come up with is 91.103, which reads a bit
    less restrictive than your quote:

    (source, US FARs: http://makeashorterlink.com/?C11726D4B)

    -------------- start quote --------------------------

    § 91.103 Preflight action.

    Each pilot in command shall, before beginning a flight, become familiar
    with all available information concerning that flight. This information
    must include-

    (a) For a flight under IFR or a flight not in the vicinity of an
    airport, weather reports and forecasts, fuel requirements, alternatives
    available if the planned flight cannot be completed, and any known
    traffic delays of which the pilot in command has been advised by ATC;

    (b) For any flight, runway lengths at airports of intended use, and the
    following takeoff and landing distance information:

    (1) For civil aircraft for which an approved Airplane or Rotorcraft
    Flight Manual containing takeoff and landing distance data is required,
    the takeoff and landing distance data contained therein; and

    (2) For civil aircraft other than those specified in paragraph (b)(1)
    of this section, other reliable information appropriate to the
    aircraft, relating to aircraft performance under expected values of
    airport elevation and runway slope, aircraft gross weight, and wind and
    temperature.

    ------------- end quote -------------------


    --
    Peter
  8. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    Dallas wrote:

    > I've often wonder what happens in real life when the non-instrument rated
    > pilot making a cross country VFR flight suddenly finds himself in IFR
    > weather.
    >
    > I know he's supposed to do his weather homework before the flight, but
    > sometimes God has other plans for the weather and it closes in around him.
    >
    > So, now he's IMC and really a hazard to everything in the sky... what does
    > he do?
    >
    > Question 2: After it's all over and he's on the ground do they pull his
    > ticket?
    >
    >
    > Dallas
    >
    >

    Every one already explained what a pilot should do if he/she should find
    him/her self in the clouds. But I have another amusing moment. A flight
    of 6 OH-58 helicopters flying from the Hohenfels Training Area in
    Germany back to Giebelstadt. A required part of yearly evaluations
    includes unusual attitude recovery and flying the Inadvertent IMC
    procedures which, at that time, required the pilot to immediately level
    and as soon as the aircraft was level and under control, climb to the
    altitude required in the procedure. When flying in formation there was
    a briefed heading to turn to and different altitudes for each aircraft.

    eg. Staggard right formation- lead acft continues straight ahead and
    climb to the base altitude listed in the procedure.

    2nd aircraft which is 45 degrees to the right rear of the lead will turn
    20 degrees right and climb to base altitude plus 200 feet.

    3d aircraft which is directly behind the lead and 45 degrees to the
    right rear of the 2nd aircraft will turn left 20 degrees and climb to
    the base altitude plus 200 feet.

    So on and so on. The procedure will provide sufficient altitude and
    airspace separation. After each aircraft is established on their
    heading a call to flight following begins with the lead aircraft, then
    the 2nd, then the 3d, and so on.

    That was just a brief description of the procedure but on to the
    humorous moment.

    The visibility that day was briefed and legal for helicopters but all of
    a sudden we all punched in. Usually that doesn't happen where all
    aircraft go IMC at the same time. The lead aircraft usually disappears
    and the following aircraft can land immediately before going into the
    clouds.

    Anyhoos, we all went IMC. I was the 6th aircraft (last one) and I was
    single pilot with no doors. Finding and opening the approach plates
    with all the wind blowing around the inside of the cockpit would be
    difficult, so I decided I would turn right and descend. We were 200 ft
    AGL so I knew I didn't have much room for error and luckily I broke out
    as I was passing a church steeple. The humorous moment? In front of me
    were two helicopters also descending in a right turn. And looking left,
    there were 3 helicopters in a left turn and descending. Not one of us
    actually flew the required procedure. Of course I was correct since I
    had no possibility of flying the procedure single pilot with no
    instrument approach plates I could use. That's my story and I'm
    sticking to it. :)

    --

    (Smiling) boB,
    SAG 70

    U.S. Army Aviation (retired)
    Central Texas - 5NM West of Gray Army Airfield (KGRK)
  9. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    boB wrote:


    > eg. Staggard right formation- lead acft continues straight ahead and
    > climb to the base altitude listed in the procedure.
    >
    > 2nd aircraft which is 45 degrees to the right rear of the lead will turn ----------
    > 20 degrees right and climb to base altitude plus 200 feet.
    >
    > 3d aircraft which is directly behind the lead and 45 degrees to the
    > LEFT -----right rear of the 2nd aircraft will turn left 20 degrees and climb to
    > the base altitude plus 200 feet.

    The 3d aircraft is directly behind the lead and 45 degrees LEFT of the
    2nd aircraft.

    Sorry, I should have proof read it better....

    --

    (Smiling) boB,
    SAG 70

    U.S. Army Aviation (retired)
    Central Texas - 5NM West of Gray Army Airfield (KGRK)
  10. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    Peter,
    FAR91.103 was what I was thinking of. But you are correct, it is for
    "IFR flight". I interpreted the "or a flight not in the vicinity of an
    airport" to mean VFR cross country flight also. But you are correct, it is
    not nearly as restrictive as I had thought. It's been a while since I
    studied my FAR's......

    Randy L.

    "Beech45Whiskey" <pjricc@gmail.com> wrote in message
    news:1119380835.586575.291080@g49g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...
    Randy wrote:

    > Incidentally, a pilot isn't just "supposed to do his weather homework
    > before the flight". FAA regulations specifically REQUIRE a pilot to check
    > the weather at the point of departure, along the intended flight route,
    > and
    > at the intended destination.

    Good points, Randy.

    One question: Sincerely I do not mean to put you on the spot, but do
    you have the specific Part 91 US regulation that states this? The
    only regulation that I could come up with is 91.103, which reads a bit
    less restrictive than your quote:

    (source, US FARs: http://makeashorterlink.com/?C11726D4B)

    -------------- start quote --------------------------

    § 91.103 Preflight action.

    Each pilot in command shall, before beginning a flight, become familiar
    with all available information concerning that flight. This information
    must include-

    (a) For a flight under IFR or a flight not in the vicinity of an
    airport, weather reports and forecasts, fuel requirements, alternatives
    available if the planned flight cannot be completed, and any known
    traffic delays of which the pilot in command has been advised by ATC;

    (b) For any flight, runway lengths at airports of intended use, and the
    following takeoff and landing distance information:

    (1) For civil aircraft for which an approved Airplane or Rotorcraft
    Flight Manual containing takeoff and landing distance data is required,
    the takeoff and landing distance data contained therein; and

    (2) For civil aircraft other than those specified in paragraph (b)(1)
    of this section, other reliable information appropriate to the
    aircraft, relating to aircraft performance under expected values of
    airport elevation and runway slope, aircraft gross weight, and wind and
    temperature.

    ------------- end quote -------------------


    --
    Peter
  11. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    "Randy L."
    > required to log a certain amount of time "under the hood"

    I confess I have never experienced the Spatial Disorientation of real life
    IMC and I'm sure, wrongly assume that all my flight simulator time would
    prepare me for that situation. Then I remember John-John's (Kennedy) story.

    From the report:
    "Within 100 days before the accident, the pilot had completed about 50
    percent of a formal instrument training course."

    "About 7 miles from the approaching shore, the airplane began a right turn.
    The airplane stopped its descent at 2,200 feet, then climbed back to 2,600
    feet and entered a left turn. While in the left turn, the airplane began
    another descent that reached about 900 fpm. While still in the descent, the
    airplane entered a right turn. During this turn, the airplane's rate of
    descent and airspeed increased. The airplane's rate of descent eventually
    exceeded 4,700 fpm, and the airplane struck the water in a nose-down
    attitude."


    Dallas
  12. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    "Beech45Whiskey"
    > confess that you are a VFR pilot who just entered IMC

    The article:
    http://www.cessna150-152.com/transatlantic.htm

    Got me started on this thread. There is one line that leads me to believe
    that this pilot had to bust through IMC conditions in Africa without any ATC
    support.

    "Leon was forced to descend to 700ft through a thick overcast to find that
    the field was predictably unlit. "

    Can I assume there are places in the world where there is no ATC help and
    you just cross your fingers and hope you don't hit anything as you plow
    through the clouds?

    Dallas
  13. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    Dallas wrote:

    > Can I assume there are places in the world where there is no ATC help and
    > you just cross your fingers and hope you don't hit anything as you plow
    > through the clouds?

    Right here in the US, especially out west where the it is much higher
    than the east coast 1,200 AGL ceiling, there is class G airspace. In
    class G airspace, there are no ATC services (or radar) provided, so
    each pilot (IFR and VFR) is solely responsible for terrain, obstacle,
    and traffic avoidance. Given the very generous visibility and cloud
    clearance requirements for VFR aircraft (down to 1 mile visibility and
    simply clear of clouds), it would be reasonable to say that flying
    through this airspace is sometimes an exercise in faith in the big sky
    theory.

    As far as other countries are concerned, I could only speculate.

    --
    Peter
  14. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    Dallas wrote:

    > Can I assume there are places in the world where there is no ATC help and
    > you just cross your fingers and hope you don't hit anything as you plow
    > through the clouds?
    >
    > Dallas
    >
    >

    Yes sir... Right here in Texas. Ferrying a UH-1 from Corpus to Ft Knox
    we his bad weather and limped into the Huntsville airport after
    following the main highway, passing right over town. We made the call
    on UNICOM about landing and suddenly a pilot asked us what the
    visibility was at the field. We told him, maybe 1/2 mile, he said "good
    enuf'" As we were shutting the engine down a twin something came out of
    the clouds straight down the runway, just as if he had flown it all his
    life. I don't think he was in contact with anyone.

    a footnote. Going into town on the main road we stopped at the first
    motel we came to. The guy inside knew we were the helicopter that had
    overflown the motel and we got into quite a discussion. The walls were
    covered with Flying Tiger pictures, many of him beside a wicked looking
    P-40???? Don't remember. That was 1976, I wonder if he's still there???
    --

    (Smiling) boB,
    SAG 70

    U.S. Army Aviation (retired)
    Central Texas - 5NM West of Gray Army Airfield (KGRK)
  15. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    "Dallas" <Cybnorm@spam_me_not.Hotmail.Com> wrote in message
    news:1ZOte.7358$NX4.2094@newsread1.news.pas.earthlink.net...
    > I've often wonder what happens in real life when the non-instrument rated
    > pilot making a cross country VFR flight suddenly finds himself in IFR
    > weather.

    I would seriously recommend you read "The Killing Zone - How and Why Pilots
    Die" by Paul A. Craig. It examines VFR into IMC in great detail.

    But the short answer is: you maintain airspeed and do a 180 until you leave
    the conditions. In fact there really shouldn't be a "suddenly in IMC"
    situation. It's not like you can't see cloud banks ahead of you. Perhaps a
    more stealthy killer is flat water at night. (Think JFK Jnr.)

    Most VFR pilots that get killed in IMC do so because they choose to continue
    and try and reach their destination rather than diverting or returning when
    they should.

    Si
  16. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    Simon Robbins wrote:
    In fact there really shouldn't be a "suddenly in IMC"
    > situation. It's not like you can't see cloud banks ahead of you.
    >
    > Si
    >
    >

    Si, I am impressed with what you know but the above statement needs an
    answer I think. Even the most careful pilots among us can easily find
    ourselves deep in zero vis. It's not quite as easy as just seeing the
    cloud in front of you. In low vis conditions it's very difficult to see
    anything but flying in legal low visibility it can suddenly go zero zero
    with no warning. Even the most careful pilot can enter IMC, and should
    have the inadvertent IMC procedures memorized AND do some hood training
    every year. I believe I am a careful pilot. I know it doesn't seem so
    when I remember those "humorous moments" but I check weather AND NOTAMs
    for every leg of a flight. Or I should say, I DID check every leg back
    when... But I have found myself in some situations despite being careful.

    --

    (Smiling) boB,
    SAG 70

    U.S. Army Aviation (retired)
    Central Texas - 5NM West of Gray Army Airfield (KGRK)
  17. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    "Randy L." <rlink@cableone.net> wrote in message
    news:11bgjk4siu2ssc8@corp.supernews.com...
    > Incidentally, a pilot isn't just "supposed to do his weather homework
    > before the flight". FAA regulations specifically REQUIRE a pilot to check
    > the weather at the point of departure, along the intended flight route,
    and
    > at the intended destination. If something bad happens during the flight,
    and
    > the FAA can prove that the pilot didn't check the weather prior to the
    > flight, then the FAA can suspend or revoke the pilots license. Hope this
    > helps...

    Even that can't guarantee clear conditions. It is afterall a weather
    "forecast" and as such somebody's educated guess as to what the conditions
    will be for the next few hours. And it doesn't take into account transient
    conditions on route between reporting stations. Lakes, marshes, estuaries,
    etc. can all cause the formation of fog or low-level cloud in the right
    conditions that might suddenly find a pilot loosing visibility of the
    ground.

    Si
  18. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    "Dallas" <Cybnorm@spam_me_not.Hotmail.Com> wrote in message
    news:QJ6ue.7724$NX4.7000@newsread1.news.pas.earthlink.net...
    > I confess I have never experienced the Spatial Disorientation of real life
    > IMC and I'm sure, wrongly assume that all my flight simulator time would
    > prepare me for that situation. Then I remember John-John's (Kennedy)
    story.

    There's a detailed analysis of his accident in the book I mentioned in
    another post. ("The Killing Zone".) The whole analysis of spacial
    disorientation I found fascinating, and I agree: You think flying
    simulators teaches you about instrument flight. Well, it might do, but it
    doesn't teach you about your senses lying to you, and you brain literally
    flipping out over conflicting sensual inputs and clouding your judgement
    with nausea.

    I've been trying to design some tests to try and simulate deceptive senses.
    Firstly I tried to fly a 30 mile trip on FS2004 if complete fog, and did ok.
    Then I put the PC next to my bed, turned the monitor on it's side, lay down
    and tried to fly in that position - a lot harder. If I could find a way of
    mounting the whole PC and monitor on a swivel chair I'd try and do the whole
    flight while rotating round. I'd bet I wouldn't last two minutes!

    Spacial disorientation is one of those things that is difficult to imagine,
    and there seems to be a reluctance for inexperienced pilots to try and
    explain to their passengers why they have to turn around and head back
    rather than proceed into cloud. This reluctance often gets everybody
    killed.

    Regards,

    Si
  19. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    Simon wrote:

    > In fact there really shouldn't be a "suddenly in IMC" situation.

    I disagree based on my own experience. As I pointed out to Jay earlier
    in this thread, there are weather conditions in the east coast US that
    can and do result in "suddenly in IMC".

    Haze in the Northeast US can be insidious. It can be reported at all
    airport METARS and TAFs as 8 miles visibility, but anyone who has flown
    westward into a setting sun with 8 mile haze knows that the forward
    visibility temporarily is more like one mile or less, thanks to the
    sunlight refracting through a thicker layer of haze relative to the
    pilot's viewpoint. Look eastward and you see 8 miles. Look west and
    it is one mile.

    One day two years ago I flew someone from Syracuse, NY, down to the
    Hudson River VFR corridor for a scenic flight along Manhattan (NY City)
    and the Hudson River. The haze in central NY was reported at about 7
    miles or so, but closer to NYC it lifted to about 10 miles. There were
    only scattered stratus clouds with no real overcast at any point along
    the route.

    Returning from this trip north westward, the sun was low in the horizon
    and forward visibility was down much lower than the METAR-reported 7
    miles. I was instrument rated and current, but I had opted to return
    home VFR and was operating with VFR flight following. With the
    autopilot engaged, I was scanning for other aircraft as best I could.
    Sunset turned to twilight and nightfall was setting in. At one point
    my scan shifted from forward (where there was no real discernible
    horizon, thanks to the haze and nightfall) to downward when suddenly,
    the ground completely disappeared.

    I looked back up, but my forward picture had not really changed all
    that much. Back down I looked. No ground whatsoever. Then it hit me:
    We had just flown into one of the scattered stratus clouds that
    happened to be in the way.

    I immediately called ATC, informed them that I had just flown into a
    haze-obscured cloud and needed an IFR pop-up clearance. Fortunately,
    the ATC facility (Binghamton, NY, which is a sleepy radar facility
    overlaying a class D airport in south central NY) was quiet and the
    controller quickly issued me an IFR clearance to my destination, then
    assigned an IFR cruise altitude for me to climb to.

    A total non-event, but it still served as a great experience for me. I
    had just flown into a cloud and never saw it coming.

    --
    Peter
  20. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    Good reply Randy.

    I remember quite well doing my time under the hood and my instructor telling
    me the purpose of getting IFR rated is to save your life and not to go fly
    into it...I had a close call once (VFR rated) and the 180 saved me and gave
    me time to wait out the weather at an alternate airport.

    Bill


    "Randy L." <rlink@cableone.net> wrote in message
    news:11bgjk4siu2ssc8@corp.supernews.com...
    > Dallas,
    > That is a situation that kills a lot of VFR pilots. But there are some
    > things that a responsible VFR pilot can do. First of all, a pilot is
    > required to log a certain amount of time "under the hood" while taking
    > flight training. This "hood time" is also part of the flight test that an
    > FAA examiner gives a pilot during their final flight test while becoming
    > certified, even for VFR flight. This insures that a VFR pilot is at least
    > capable of controlling the aircraft while in IFR conditions. A part of
    > that hood time is also devoted to something called "recovery from unusual
    > attitudes". This helps a pilot learn to look at the instruments, and tell
    > what needs to be done to recover the aircraft without using outside visual
    > cues. Of course the obvious answer to your question is to never put
    > yourself in the position of becoming trapped in IFR conditions if you are
    > only VFR rated. But of course this is not a perfect world, and sometimes
    > circumstances happen that are out of a VFR pilots control. So what can a
    > VFR pilot do if they find themselves in IFR conditions? First of all,
    > execute a 180-degree turn and try flying back into VFR conditions. If this
    > is not possible, then get on the radio and call for some help. You can use
    > the Center frequency, the Emergency frequency, the local FSS frequency,
    > the Flight Watch frequency, or if you are already in contact with ATC you
    > can advise them of your situation and ask for help. A pilot will never be
    > refused help from any of these agencies, because their number 1 priority
    > is the safety of the aircraft in their jurisdiction. A good pilot isn't
    > going to be worried about getting their ticket pulled, a good pilot is
    > going to be concerned with getting themselves, their passengers, and their
    > aircraft down safely. The hardest part for the pilot is to accept that you
    > are in over your head, and to confess that you need help.
    > Not all cases of VFR pilots who ask for help when stuck in IFR
    > conditions result in the pilot having his ticket pulled. As I said
    > earlier, sometimes things happen that are out of the pilots control. The
    > only time that a VFR pilot will have his license revoked (or suspended) is
    > if the FAA determines that the said pilot had demonstrated "willful
    > disregard" for the regulations and procedures that regulate VFR/IFR
    > flight, or that they knowingly violated said regulations and procedures.
    > Personally, I would rather lose my license but still be alive, rather
    > than try to continue into IFR conditions that I am not qualified for, not
    > seek any help, and wind up....dead.
    > Incidentally, a pilot isn't just "supposed to do his weather homework
    > before the flight". FAA regulations specifically REQUIRE a pilot to check
    > the weather at the point of departure, along the intended flight route,
    > and at the intended destination. If something bad happens during the
    > flight, and the FAA can prove that the pilot didn't check the weather
    > prior to the flight, then the FAA can suspend or revoke the pilots
    > license. Hope this helps...
    >
    > Randy L.
    >
    > "Dallas" <Cybnorm@spam_me_not.Hotmail.Com> wrote in message
    > news:1ZOte.7358$NX4.2094@newsread1.news.pas.earthlink.net...
    >> I've often wonder what happens in real life when the non-instrument rated
    >> pilot making a cross country VFR flight suddenly finds himself in IFR
    >> weather.
    >>
    >> I know he's supposed to do his weather homework before the flight, but
    >> sometimes God has other plans for the weather and it closes in around
    >> him.
    >>
    >> So, now he's IMC and really a hazard to everything in the sky... what
    >> does
    >> he do?
    >>
    >> Question 2: After it's all over and he's on the ground do they pull his
    >> ticket?
    >>
    >>
    >> Dallas
    >>
    >>
    >
    >
  21. Archived from groups: alt.games.microsoft.flight-sim (More info?)

    "Simon Robbins" <simon@NOSPAMsjrobbins.demon.co.uk> wrote in message
    news:d9b89b$ll6$1$8302bc10@news.demon.co.uk...
    > "Dallas" <Cybnorm@spam_me_not.Hotmail.Com> wrote in message
    > news:1ZOte.7358$NX4.2094@newsread1.news.pas.earthlink.net...
    > > I've often wonder what happens in real life when the non-instrument
    rated
    > > pilot making a cross country VFR flight suddenly finds himself in IFR
    > > weather.
    >
    > I would seriously recommend you read "The Killing Zone - How and Why
    Pilots
    > Die" by Paul A. Craig. It examines VFR into IMC in great detail.
    >
    > But the short answer is: you maintain airspeed and do a 180 until you
    leave
    > the conditions. In fact there really shouldn't be a "suddenly in IMC"
    > situation. It's not like you can't see cloud banks ahead of you. Perhaps
    a
    > more stealthy killer is flat water at night. (Think JFK Jnr.)

    Years ago, while flying at night near Valdosta, Georgia, all the lights
    on the ground went out. I wondered about the power failure for maybe 30
    seconds, when a realization hit me -- was I in a cloud? I turned on the
    landing light and everything was white! Fortunately, I was "approximately
    50 percent through an instrument rating" (uh-oh, sound familiar?) and I was
    able to do a 180 and get clear.

    So perhaps you CAN be "suddenly in IMC" with no warning. It was a dark
    night, and I had no indication of a cloud in front of me. But it was
    certainly frightening!

    --
    Earl Needham
    Clovis, New Mexico USA
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