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Have you ever been told to brace or told passengers to brace if you're a pilot?

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  • 15-02-2019 9:48pm
    #1
    Closed Accounts Posts: 616 ✭✭✭


    Or what's the scariest situation you've ever been in when flying as a pilot or passenger or cabin crew?


    Worst I ever experienced is the plane barely touching runway 16 and immediately taking off again. The pilot never mentioned why when we turned around and landed again. It wasn't scary as such though, just confusing.


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Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,139 ✭✭✭What Username Guidelines


    Posted this before but can’t find it...

    Flight to Barcelona years back. Hot day in Dublin, so you could see a mild vapour in the air as we boarded, from the air conditioning. Don’t think many noticed. As the plane spooled up for take off, more power went to air con and the vapour became more noticeable. One or two people obviously noticed, assumed smoke, and screamed in panic, you could actually hear the panic spread from the back of the cabin forwards.

    Plane rotated and an air hostess unbelts and is climbing up the aisle telling people it’s ok, remain calm, etc. Girl sitting in front of me unbelts, whips around and kneels in her seat, hugging the back of her chair and screaming “OH MY GOD” in our direction. It was absolute chaos.

    We level off, captain comes on and does absolutely nothing to ellay fears... “we understand there was a problem in the cabin on takeoff, we’ve checked out everything out and there doesn’t appear to be a problem, so we’ve taken the decision to continue” as opposed to “it’s grand, it was just the air con”

    Poor girl in front swayed in here chair the whole way there.


  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 4,166 Mod ✭✭✭✭Locker10a


    The first time I experienced the landing gear being re-lowered after take off due to hot breaks (I didn’t know this at the time) my attention peaked and I felt a little adrenaline.

    Other than that, standard birstrikes and one rapid precautionary disembarkation due to smoke in the cabin during boarding.


  • Registered Users Posts: 34,524 ✭✭✭✭Hotblack Desiato


    FFS that's just condensation, cold air from the packs hitting moist cabin air, seen it loads of times.

    I've been on two late go-arounds, one was on a BA 737 in 1995 at LHR, we were across the threshold and a few seconds from touchdown when the taps got turned on full, about 15 or 20 minutes later when it was obvious we were well established in a hold the captain came on the PA and told us we had to go around due to the previous landing aircraft missing its exit.

    A slightly more interesting one was in 2005 in Dubrovnik airport, it's in a valley and things get interesting when the wind is blowing strongly from the wrong direction. We were on an A320 and close to touchdown banked this way and that, a wingtip got closer to the ground than I would have liked, the taps turned on and the half of the plane which was going to Medjugorje whipped out their rosary beads in a flash and started praying :pac: for me the scary part was over as soon as I heard and felt go-around power kicking in. Then they started spraying holy water around the place. About 15 minutes later we landed at the second attempt without any drama or divine intervention :)

    Fingal County Council are certainly not competent to be making decisions about the most important piece of infrastructure on the island. They need to stick to badly designed cycle lanes and deciding on whether Mrs Murphy can have her kitchen extension.



  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


    Had plenty of interesting airborne situations. As a student pilot flying solo from Weston in early 80s encountered an area of abrupt onset severe turbulence where my aircraft literally fell from 2000 feet through 1800 in a split second and I pushed nose down (correct manoeuvre here in case I’d inadvertently stalled) and applied full power pulling nose gently up again, having Co formed a healthy airspeed. My variometer needle was pointing zero climb in spite of optimum climb attitude/airspeed. After a few more seconds I was out of that tremendous downdraft, which seemed to come in the midst of otherwise benign weather. To this day I wish I could sccesscweathervreports for that day to evaluate exactly what happened. In the instant of the aircraft diving, my head hit the canopy, and my navigational notes and map tossed behind me. Fortunately I had a railway track and Royal Canal to follow back east and make a safe landing. The aircraft I was flying (now the Koliber, made in Poland) was totally benign in its handling and known as the “tin parachute” because of its tendency to fall on its feet during a stall. The incident, I believe to have been a very abrupt downdraft at junction of bogland-green fields in a thermally active but otherwise benign weather day. The air(wo)man always has to be prepared for this kind of thing, and at least, unlike st sea, one does not capsize!


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,522 ✭✭✭Noxegon


    I have. I was a passenger on this flight:

    http://avherald.com/h?article=421b2802&opt=0

    It wasn't a lot of fun, it must be said.

    I develop Superior Solitaire when I'm not procrastinating on boards.ie.



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  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Entertainment Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators Posts: 16,592 CMod ✭✭✭✭faceman


    Despite all my hours of flying I’ve thankfully never had any emergencies. Plenty of go arounds etc but nothing serious.

    Can’t say the same for my friends though!

    One friend was on a Ryanair flight that made an emergency landing in Spain.

    Another friend was on a flight over the US when one of the engines failed with a loud bang. Brown trousers till they landed.

    Another friend flying over the Atlantic hit some unforecast CAT and a strong downward draft. There was some serious injuries onboard. Funnily enough this flight never hit the AV Herald despite the serious injuries. She was connected to the inflight WiFi at the time and messaging me so I literally got inflight commentary as it happened.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,670 ✭✭✭IE 222


    Coming out of PMI we experienced wake turbulence from a 757 ahead of us. 3 extreme rolls to the right scariest thing I've ever experienced. Had 2 go arounds before as well.


  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


    IE 222 wrote: »
    Coming out of PMI we experienced wake turbulence from a 757 ahead of us. 3 extreme rolls to the right scariest thing I've ever experienced. Had 2 go arounds before as well.

    Wake turbulence can be scary-encountered this in my first solo flight, coming in too close behind a small faster aircraft piloted by the then Aer Lingus Chief Pilot Phelim Cronin on his day off!


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 4,872 ✭✭✭Sittingpretty


    https://www.irishtimes.com/news/aer-lingus-flight-diverted-to-canada-after-safety-alert-1.1039181

    Was a passenger in this flight.

    Few details omitted from article, fuel dumped at sea, met by fire engines on the tarmac and courtesy of Canadian customs left sitting on the plane for 4 hours before being allowed to disembark.

    Also Goose Bay is Canada’s answer to deliverance.

    Edited to add: Several gimps on board praying and hugging each other and genuinely breeding chaos. It was VERY frightening though, I did genuinely make peace with the fact I may not get home and have had Xanax flights ever since.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,086 ✭✭✭Nijmegen


    https://www.irishtimes.com/news/aer-lingus-flight-diverted-to-canada-after-safety-alert-1.1039181

    Was a passenger in this flight.

    Few details omitted from article, fuel dumped at sea, met by fire engines on the tarmac and courtesy of Canadian customs left sitting on the plane for 4 hours before being allowed to disembark.

    Also Goose Bay is Canada’s answer to deliverance.

    Edited to add: Several gimps on board praying and hugging each other and genuinely breeding chaos. It was VERY frightening though, I did genuinely make peace with the fact I may not get home and have had Xanax flights ever since.

    Others can really create the atmosphere. I was on a KLM 747 once that had to do a last minute go around due to crosswind. Same story, some people getting very excited and therefore winding up the others (the commentary is interesting, “my god will they be able to pull up in time!” basically as we were climbing....). Myself and my pal were joking (quietly) about going out in style and assuming the brace position to have a last fond word with our arses. Made it a giggle. I mean, I’m not flying the damn thing, so if we’re gonna go down the runway in a ball of fire I don’t want to spend my last moments unduly stressed out.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,670 ✭✭✭IE 222


    Wake turbulence can be scary-encountered this in my first solo flight, coming in too close behind a small faster aircraft piloted by the then Aer Lingus Chief Pilot Phelim Cronin on his day off!

    I was only passenger but yeah I was in a sweat for the rest of the flight.


  • Moderators, Music Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators Posts: 6,068 Mod ✭✭✭✭LoonyLovegood


    I was on the Delta flight that had to return to Dublin in September. Crew were great, but seeing the co-pilot leg it down to the end of the plane and back up really didn't help matters. Landing back in Dublin was alright till someone at a window pointed out the fire brigade at the side of the runway waiting for us.

    We got that same plane the next day, and when we landed in JFK (a day and four hours late) one of the ceiling panels fell down, just hanging from the ceiling.


  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


    https://www.irishtimes.com/news/aer-lingus-flight-diverted-to-canada-after-safety-alert-1.1039181

    Was a passenger in this flight.

    Few details omitted from article, fuel dumped at sea, met by fire engines on the tarmac and courtesy of Canadian customs left sitting on the plane for 4 hours before being allowed to disembark.

    Also Goose Bay is Canada’s answer to deliverance.

    Edited to add: Several gimps on board praying and hugging each other and genuinely breeding chaos. It was VERY frightening though, I did genuinely make peace with the fact I may not get home and have had Xanax flights ever since.

    As regards passengers spreading chaos, when on board an Aer Lingus ATR descending into Cardiff one extremely blustery day, the aircraft did, as warned by the captain, some extreme wind blown manoeuvres so to speak, like turning a full 90 degrees heading and back again in seconds. I had my 88 year old mother beside me, and when tbe young guy behind let out a scream during that sudden yaw, she said “oh shud up, what do you expect with the wind out there?” He was sobered up very quickly! My mother, being a wheelchair user, was last to leave the plane when we landed, so we met the pilots as they were exiting. She congratulated them on their handling in the tricky winds, and the flight attendant said “what was that awful big skid about up there?” The captain said “I had two winds at that altitude converging from two directions, one of them tugging at the big tail fin, but we still maintained a stabilized approach”.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 7,440 ✭✭✭The Rape of Lucretia


    An aborted take off once, just as you are expecting the plane to lift.
    While startling to passengers who have never heard of them, go-arounds seem frequent enough.
    From the experienced among you, how often do you change takeoff from rotating, to screeching to a halt at the end of the runway ?


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators Posts: 9,773 Mod ✭✭✭✭Tenger


    https://www.irishtimes.com/news/aer-lingus-flight-diverted-to-canada-after-safety-alert-1.1039181

    Was a passenger in this flight.

    Few details omitted from article, fuel dumped at sea, met by fire engines on the tarmac and courtesy of Canadian customs left sitting on the plane for 4 hours before being allowed to disembark.

    Also Goose Bay is Canada’s answer to deliverance.

    Edited to add: Several gimps on board praying and hugging each other and genuinely breeding chaos. It was VERY frightening though, I did genuinely make peace with the fact I may not get home and have had Xanax flights ever since.
    I was also on this flight. The wife hasnt quite recovered. Goose Bay is quite an experience. They get polar bears in the Winter, charming!
    I missed a family event due to the night spent in Goose Bay. Around 9pm the following night my family starting asking about me, my mother then told them "oh he had to stay in Canada for the night, Im not sure why" The rest of them had seen the new, my mother didnt join the dots!!

    Have had 2 touch and go's. (Cool)
    Multiple go arounds under 100 ft. Widebody go arounds are interesting. A couple of aborted takeoffs too.
    Ive had the aircraft drop so fast that I nearly hit the ceiling. Was 2 rows from the back of the cabin so saw dozens of objects floating up for 1-2 seconds before dropping back.

    Have had wake turbulence 3-4 times right after take off. Once experienced it across the Atlantic. 1 pax who was standing at the time fractured her leg.

    Have had masks drop on landing countless times on the old Bae146s in the early 00's.

    And I think 3 inflight engine shut downs, 2 anyway. And a handful of precautionary situations with hydraulic problems, all worked out fine in the end.


    A close mate was on a flight which lost an engine on takeoff, she still has a piece of the shrapnel.
    Another guy was on that aircraft in Orlando 2 years ago that the baggage loader went on fire underneath. Sent me a pic, I nearly dropped my beer.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,086 ✭✭✭Nijmegen


    Tenger wrote: »
    I was also on this flight. The wife hasnt quite recovered. Goose Bay is quite an experience. They get polar bears in the Winter, charming!

    Have had 2 touch and go's. (Cool)
    Multiple go arounds under 100 ft. Widebody go arounds are interesting. A couple of aborted takeoffs too.
    Ive had the aircraft drop so fast that I nearly hit the ceiling. Was 2 rows from the back of the cabin so saw dozens of objects floating up for 1-2 seconds before dropping back.

    Have had wake turbulence 3-4 times right after take off. Once experienced it across the Atlantic. 1 pax who was standing at the time fractured her leg.

    Have had masks drop on landing countless times on the old Bae146s in the early 00's.

    And I think 3 inflight engine shut downs, 2 anyway. And a handful of precautionary situations with hydraulic problems, all worked out fine in the end.


    A close mate was on a flight which lost an engine on takeoff, she still has a piece of the shrapnel.
    Another guy was on that aircraft in Orlando 2 years ago that the baggage loader went on fire underneath. Sent me a pic, I nearly dropped my beer.

    Do us all a favour and tell us when and where you’re flying, so we can be sure to book alternatives!


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,423 ✭✭✭Damien360


    Just to add to a comment on panic above. Never had a situation like "brace" as a passenger but have been on a flight to Switzerland and one family before take off were sweating, praying loudly (rosary beads out) and their panic spread very quickly through to quite a few other passengers around me. The dad was worst of all of them and would meet everyones look with a stare back.


  • Registered Users Posts: 138 ✭✭Lapmo_Dancer


    https://www.irishtimes.com/news/aer-lingus-flight-diverted-to-canada-after-safety-alert-1.1039181

    Was a passenger in this flight.

    Few details omitted from article, fuel dumped at sea, met by fire engines on the tarmac and courtesy of Canadian customs left sitting on the plane for 4 hours before being allowed to disembark.

    Also Goose Bay is Canada’s answer to deliverance.

    Edited to add: Several gimps on board praying and hugging each other and genuinely breeding chaos. It was VERY frightening though, I did genuinely make peace with the fact I may not get home and have had Xanax flights ever since.

    Current Aer Lingus A-330s don’t have the fuel dump function. Was it a function on older ones?


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,648 ✭✭✭honeybear


    Polish lady beside me started praying aloud due to a very bad landing-she has ruined my flying experience ever since...I used to LOVE flying!


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators Posts: 9,773 Mod ✭✭✭✭Tenger


    Current Aer Lingus A-330s don’t have the fuel dump function. Was it a function on older ones?

    Im not sure but one thing I do recall is which aircraft it was. MSN 70 EI-CRK


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  • Registered Users Posts: 10,097 ✭✭✭✭smurfjed


    Reading the above, I lead a very sheltered life, guess that I should get out and fly more :)


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,162 ✭✭✭goingnowhere


    Its an option but rarely fitted on A330-200 let alone the A330-300. A330 is certified to land at MTOW if needed, but its much easier to circle a bit to burn off to MLW which saves a gear check

    EI-CRK doesn't appear to have fuel dump fitted no pipe sticking out of the flap fairing


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 4,872 ✭✭✭Sittingpretty


    Current Aer Lingus A-330s don’t have the fuel dump function. Was it a function on older ones?


    It was 13 years ago. I’m not sure, that’s what we were told anyways at the time, could have been a rumour that circulated during the building panic though, may not have been absolute fact :)


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,086 ✭✭✭Nijmegen


    It was 13 years ago. I’m not sure, that’s what we were told anyways at the time, could have been a rumour that circulated during the building panic though, may not have been absolute fact :)

    Might just have been burning rather than dumping fuel.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 4,872 ✭✭✭Sittingpretty


    Nijmegen wrote: »
    Might just have been burning rather than dumping fuel.

    Maybe so, I think when the decision was made to divert to goose bay we were 45 mins flight from there so maybe that might make sense. I’m pretty sure I remember that being said though, that it was done as a precaution but I’m totally open to correction :)


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,167 ✭✭✭B-D-P--


    Not told to brace but was once delayed from taking off, then we pulled back a little from the airport, Pilot told us that they were just doing some precautionary tests.

    Started reving (I think its still revving with airplanes) the engines, that wasn't the scary bit, the scary bit was there was 3 fire-brigades ready to open their hoses at the engines if needs be.

    It didnt bother me much, but there was a person who near died from fear and demanded they got off the plane.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,139 ✭✭✭What Username Guidelines


    FFS that's just condensation, cold air from the packs hitting moist cabin air, seen it loads of times.

    Yup, my wife and I sat there fairly perplexed at the panic, tried to tell those around us it was all fine. It was only afterwards that I thought – what if something serious had actually happened that I couldnt see, and there we were sitting smugly thinking these people are going crazy over condensation. Ah, sure at least I would have died smug, I guess. :rolleyes:


  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


    I was on an Emirates flight from Dubai into Seychelles and pilot aborted landing at 400 feet decision height as tbe visibility was insufficient to land. He said he was circling for up to 20 minutes to wait for improved visibility and make another go at landing, but that failing that company policy was to divert to Antananarivo in Madagascar where we would be put up for the night. As Madagascar was firmly on my bucket list I was hoping for a free night there, but alas we were able to land on second attempt in Seychelles, where the rain hung around for the week.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,827 ✭✭✭Rawr


    I've had a few night-time go-arounds, which were more of an interesting delay to me at the time than something scary.

    I did encounter wake tubulance once on a Ryanair enroute over the Irish Sea, which was a bit of fright. It felt like the whole plane just suddently dipped down several meters with an almight "BANG!" which echoed thoughout the craft.

    Thankfully the flight crew came on and announced that everything was fine and that was a wake tublence from another plane that had gone ahead.


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  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators Posts: 9,773 Mod ✭✭✭✭Tenger


    Nijmegen wrote: »
    Do us all a favour and tell us when and where you’re flying, so we can be sure to book alternatives!
    Reading over my post it does look very eventful. Go arounds are not uncommon at all and not a big event. The inflight shutdowns were very calm too. Flight crew had everything clear communicated and the puntets hardly noticed.
    I was only ever worried on 2 occasions. Not bad for 14 years of 8-14 flights per week. Glad Im not doing it anymore though.


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