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Thread: Seaplane Accident

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Jul 2011

    Seaplane Accident

    The current issue of PILOT, the AOPA magazine has a report on the accident at the seaplane base, couple of years ago. Its sad to read, I didn't know any of the people, I have a friend related to the pilot.
    This report is frankly written and makes it clear that some seaplanes are especially difficult taking off downwind in choppy conditions. I was at the base the next morning. I assume they could not go into the wind or would not clear the shore?

  2. #2
    Mayhemxpc's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Manassas, Virginia

    It read as though taking off downwind was just one link in the chain, and maybe not even a critical link.

    -- Chris
    Chris Mayer

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    New Hampshire
    Looking up the Lake owners manuals, take-offs are stated to be made with flaps down.

    Water is hard at takeoff speed so you typically want to lift off a minimum airspeed. That means flaps if available and into the wind. Hull seaplanes like the Lake have different issues than floatplanes. "Hooking" a tip float is a bad thing in a hull-ed seaplane for instance. And getting behind the airplane into a porpoise is another very bad thing in any seaplane.

    The entire accident chain is a fast series of all of the things you do not want to get into in a seaplane.

    Seaplanes are great fun but you have to respect the nautical aspects of Mother Nature until you are airborne. Everyone should add SES to their pilot certificate.

    Best of luck,


  4. #4
    Airmutt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    NW. Atlanta GA
    Seems to me here were a lot of issues. One sponson had been taking on water, really rough water in the 1.5 to 2 ft range, the guy was said to be in a hurry, the flaps were up, probably got behind due to heavy porpoising, hooked a wing (heavy wing due to the sponson issue?). When things start to go south ya got to be fast or you are going for a ride that typically ends badly.
    Dave Shaw
    EAA 67180 Lifetime
    Learn to Build, Build to Fly, Fly for Fun

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