Skip to comments.Thousands see crash that kills veteran pilot (Bryan Jensen)
Posted on 08/21/2011 10:30:39 AM PDT by EveningStar
The pilot of the biplane that pancaked into the runway at Wheeler Downtown Airport before a stunned air show crowd Saturday described himself as obsessed with flying.
Bryan Jensen grew up on a farm in Iowa, took his first flying lesson when he was 13, soloed on his 16th birthday and as an adult flew jumbo jets for Delta Air Lines, according to a website promoting his passion for aerobatic flying. Hed been a stunt pilot the past 15 years, when not in the captains seat of a 747.
(Excerpt) Read more at kansascity.com ...
Clearly they were not prepared and it took them a long time to be on the way. The promoter of this event was not prepared.
His family and friends will be grieving, but not him. He died doing what he loved. His last thought probably was,
Boy...this is going to be a close one.
The crash happened at 1:30 into the video. A car pulls up about a minute later, obviously with NO fire extinquisher. The sirens from the emergency trucks do not sound for at least 1 minute and 30 seconds later and at 3:30 when the video ends they still were not at the crash location.
Totally inept emergency services at this air show.
It was 2 minutes and 15 seconds before any water was put on the burning plane.
Just sucks. No time for blame, sad loss.
Looks like the problem started in an uncontrolled tumbling maneuver, which used to be known as a “lomchevak”, with the airplane pitching and snap-rolling simultaneously. It exited in a spin and never recovered. Not exactly “pancaking into the runway”.
My T-38 flight instructor died practicing for an airshow in his Pitts Special.
Aviation is dangerous, and serious, business.
Your post made me think of that old saw; “ There are old pilots and there are bold pilots, but there are no old bold pilots.”
I was at a drag race (local event) and a guy’s brakes failed, he ran into grandstands at the end of the strip (unoccupied) and his vehicle started on fire. I was not far from there.
I got into my truck and raced over there. I had two fire extinquishers and while I sprayed my buddy reached and unhooked the guys harness. I used both fire extiguishers.
After we had him out, I looked around and realized that no emergency trucks were yet there.
We went straight to the promoter and demanded he show us where he had fire extinguishers. There was not one that he had arranged for the event. I was furious. The guy was fine. His fire suit worked. My friend ended up with worse burns (on his arms) than the driver had.
The pilot died instantly upon impact.
It appeared to be a planned stall.. but I heard the engine sputter, not sure if the pilot blacked out (or maybe had heart attack?!).. but it appeared, to me, that there was little effort in recovering (hence, why I thought maybe a medical situation.. lack of throttle)..
Rest in Peace, my brother...
I saw a show on the History Channel a few days ago. It was about dangerous airports. In one video, a plane goes off the runway and before more the two or three seconds had elapsed, a crash truck was visible with it’s lights on heading for the plane.
This was in some third world South or Central American country. I thought that was unusually good response.
Yet another accident at an airshow today...
True, He was dead when he hit and if he wasn’t nothing could have saved him.
His luck ran out.
Poor devil. RIP.
FWIW my instructor taught me if I went into a spin to just let go of the controls if I did nothing else and if there was sufficient altitude the aircraft would recover itself since a spin is an induced maneuver that the aircraft has to be forced into (full aft yoke and full rudder).
I went on to fly Army helicopters so fixed wing was left behind but was I taught right about spins?
Anyway, a sad moment and prayers for the pilot and family members. Sickening to watch in fact.
My first thoughts as well, he blacked out.
God bless his family.
Were you at this show?
I cannot imagine that 10 fire trucks already spraying water at the scene before he crashed would have made a spit of difference. “Inept emergency services” is so irrelevant.
Blue Skies, Bryan.
That’s true with most airplanes. They are designed to be stable. It’s not necesarily true abour aerobatic planes where stability is undesirable.
Sad weekend for aviation.
Your statement about letting go is true if you have quite a bit of altitude and the aircraft has a lot of positive dynamic stability.
You bring up a point that has been debated in general aviation training for years. Teach spins? Required for flight instructors, but not private or commercial pilots. One school of thought is if the pilots are trained thoroughly to recognize and recover from a stall, they will never spin.
If a student asks me to show them a spin, I say no. We can do spin training, but we are not going to do one aerobatic manuever and say that training was given.
Danm... Aviation took a beating.
I was in the Army ROTC flight training program in the fall of 1969. I soloed the Piper Cherokee and if you can’t land that A/C with its generous ground effect then something’s wrong. Anyway, the IP demonstrated a spin; he told me to put it into a power-on stall, then took the controls and mashed full right rudder with ‘a blast of power’ which kicked the tail out from under us and we did three full revolutions looking straight down at the spinning earth beneath before he leveled out. My stomach did not do so for a few minutes.
Simulated forced landing was interesting. The IP yanked throttle off then told me to bring the nose up until the propeller came to a complete stop. I was directed to a plowed/planted field and had it set up to touch down between the furroughs (!) when he said to start the engine and do a power recovery. I did, pulled up, and that was that.
FWIW, learning to fly fixed wing taught me absolutely nothing about rotary wing flight other than how to read directional gyro, altimeter, and IVSI. But once you learn, like riding a bicycle.
You stated well designed airplanes are inherently stable. I was taught that all airplanes by their nature want to fly, but that helicopters don’t. This is so true. A helicopter has to be flown every second. And I still love them.
been a rough day for the airshow circuit
The problem that the public doesn't understand is that these pros make it look "too easy." Performing these maneuvers is death defying work.
All it takes is one small mistake.
No old. bold pilots? And taught that all airplanes by their nature want to fly, but that helicopters dont?
Believe one of our early astronauts, a former test pilot, would warn that those who wanted to live long and prosper shouldn’t get into an airplane with only one engine or only one pilot, and shouldn’t ever get into a helicopter, either.
Speedy exit......accellerated egress
‘Sorry, no time for chit chat...I must be on my way!’
The leader of the Blue Angels did not get fired:
(Excerpt FRom The American Spectator. See http://spectator.org/archives/2011/06/01/draft-koss-for-president# for the rest of the story)
“This is what is so admirable about [Commander Dave] Koss. Last week, he resigned from the Blue Angels, the job he spent his entire adult life working toward. In a statement he said he was guilty of “not meeting the airborne standard that makes the Blue Angels the exceptional organization that it is.”
During the May 22 demonstration at the Lynchburg, VA Regional Air Show, the Blue Angels performed a maneuver in which several aircraft flew below the “hard deck,” the minimally-acceptable altitude. The flight demonstration team immediately ended the remainder of its performance and returned to home base at Naval Air Station Pensacola, FL to immediately commence a “safety stand-down.” No one was injured and no equipment was damaged.
As the squadron’s commanding officer, Koss did what he believed to be the proper and honorable thing. He offered his resignation. It was accepted.”
The fact that Cdr. Koss took responsibility and resigned FRom his dream job tells me that he is a man of honor, a man with the kind of character we sorely need in today’s world. I wish him much success in his future endeavors.
We have a house on an airport. We started out with hang gliders and ultra-light airplanes and moved into general aviation aircraft. I remember telling my wife how safe hang gliding was; and then taking her to a club meeting, a Shakeys Pizza Parlor that had more people seated in wheelchairs than any emergency room I have ever seen.
Pilots almost all have stories of close calls, and if you are a member of the aviation community chances are you have known people who didn't make it. We keep flying despite the risks because we love it. Unlike riding a motorcycle which is at about the same level of risk; when a pilot dies 90% of the time it was his/her own fault. It is very unlikely that you will be killed by a drunk. I think that makes it easier on the family; most of the time there is no one to blame but the one who was doing what he or she loved.
It is hard to say if the cause of this crash can really be accurately determined. Stunt flying is very risky. The NTSB will release their findings; in a case like this it will just be an educated guess. The observations of spectators might be helpful to the NTSB but spectators speculating on a cause has almost no meaning.
I remember when a little girl named Jessica was “flying” a plane across the country with her “flight instructor” and her dad. They crashed early in the morning after they took off in the mountains of Wyoming or Montana. One of the spectators who claimed to have been a pilot said he witnessed the crash and he kept saying to himself, “Pull up Jessica! Pull up!”
It was obvious to any actual pilot that whoever was really at the controls had entered a classic takeoff stall and spin. Pulling up does not help in that scenario. The body of the flight instructor had two broken wrists which indicated that he had been the pilot in command. He was a coastal pilot flying a plane heavily laden with fuel and supplies in a mountainous region which unfortunately a challenge he was not fully prepared for. Little Jessica had been carried, sleeping out to the plane.
I felt bad for the little girl, her mother and other relatives. The two men were on a grand adventure and their lives were ended with no suffering doing something that they loved. I didn't pity them, but I felt sorry for those who loved them. Bryan Jensen was doing what he loved... something that was risky... it is too bad for his loved ones, but that is not a bad way to go in my view.
He did do the right thing. I can only guess if he was taken behind closed doors and told to render is resignation, or not. I was told by someone that he was given the choice to resign or be relieved. I was in the military for over 20 years, and I know from personal experience that is sometimes the way it went.
In either case, he is an honorable man, and his job was undoubtedly one of the most demanding and dangerous in the world.
It appears to me that Mr. Jensen exited from the lomcevak in an inverted flat spin. There was simply not enough altitude to recover.
nope, for various reasons
Video from the Sunday show. I did see the A/C form up for the tribute, the A/C made several passes over our house.
Pretty sad day Saturday
You are most welcome. I have it on very good authority that Cdr. Koss resigned for the good of the Naval Service and the Blue Angels. It was a brave and honorable thing to do.
Thank you for your service.
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