Water Crash

eg: stopmotion, new-york, street
I found this clip on You Tube. It happened in a split second and the trike sank so fast. Obviously, they released the safety belts before the landing. What cause this accident ?

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  • Captain X
    by Captain X 7 years ago
    The "trike" portion tumbles violently into the water and sinks very quickly (if not for the boat portion). Robert Wascher and I were checking out some discussion on other sites regarding putting floatation in the nose to counteract the tendency of the bar to continue to pin you back against the seat (assuming you survived its initial crushing blow into your chest).

    The more I see / think about it though, the more I think that firing off the BRS and dropping in vertically is the best option- the trike / equipment is hosed anyway. At least while you're floating down, you can let go of the control bar and start to release yourself from the seatbelt, wires, etc.

    Monty- both Newton's and Murphy's laws were re-proven.
  • Jon Carmichael
    by Jon Carmichael 7 years ago
    she's asking "are you alright??" well no, obviously not - jump in and help them!!!
  • Diego Sagrera
    by Diego Sagrera 7 years ago
    I see the pilot and I think I see the passengers helmet floating. Like Monty says "a body in motion doesn't like landing sideways" Hope the passenger got out safe and that the pilot had no Sirius injuries.
  • Robert Wascher
    by Robert Wascher 7 years ago
    I think he was landing toward the shore or toward a boat where the camera was and had no option for a go-a-round when he was poorly lined up to land.
    They were pretty well tossed , but unlike trikes stalling at 35 knots, he looked fast.
    I love old big field aerodromes because you can always land straight upwind. Baffling why the flying raff didn't take advantage of this.
    Probably because of 'camera vanity. '
  • Tom Donovan
    by Tom Donovan 7 years ago
    i just watched the video again, and yea i agree with Robert. It looks like he,s comming in to fast.
  • Jackye  Reynolds
    by Jackye Reynolds 7 years ago
    Too much speed and weight on transition to nose gear or forward hull or carriage, and not aligned with flight path of wing can cause most trikes to "wheelbarrow" and nose over.
    I think this is a good reason for the vertical stabilizer fins utilized on some float trikes I've seen, Like WBK's "Floatzilla".
    The trampoline area can often cause the floats or hull to wander off a few degrees especially with a cushion of air that compresses beneath.
  • Larry  Mednick
    by Larry Mednick 7 years ago
    that probably wouldnt have been an issue if he didnt touch down at cruise speed. Aproach speed was fine, touch down speed not fine. the obvious crab i suppose was the "new factor" that ultimately caused the roll over compared to previous landings, but the lack of slowing it down before touch down was really "what the pilot did wrong" probably on every landing of his career up until that one.
  • Lucian Bartosik
    by Lucian Bartosik 7 years ago
    It is failry obvious what happened here, and having taught a few owners how to fly using their FIBs I also know how unstble these flying boat trikes are in roll. Take a look again at the entire landing approach and touch down and look at everything that is important to a good landing.

    First off, I could see that both pilot and poor trusting passenger were ejected into the water and swam away safely, they are very lucky. Now lets look at the various phases of that attempted landing.

    You will see that the pilot's approach was initially with the trike's track and the wing in the same direction. Then for some reason, we see the inflatable boat part of the flying machine yaw off to it's starboard side and then almost come back to a straight line with the wing's keel just at the point of touch down. Now if the pilot had been better trained and completed his landing (for what followed the touch down) properly, I believe all would have been fine.

    However, he made several mistakes and as with all accidents, a chain of events were lined up and resulted in the crash. Remove just one of these links in any accident scenario and most often, the crash would not have taken place. We'll take these links in order as we watched them.

    1. His approach was, for the most part, alright except for that yaw. But as I stated, the boat and wing were almost realigned as it touched down. However, he continued in to his touch down point, too steep for safety. That is, he never entered into a flair at the end of his approach angle, prior to touch down.

    This means that he landed not only too hard, but too fast for safety. Watch the nose of the wing on approach to touch down, there is no noticeable pitch up movement, which you would see if the pilot did a flair just prior to touch down.

    The flair will reduce your airspeed and of course that results in a reduced ground speed too, prior to touch down, which is what you want to happen. You will also see the bar position when he touches down, it is back towards his waist and not out to the compression strut, where it should have been. This again proves he did not flair prior to touch down.

    2. Watch the prop during the descent, touch down and forward travel on the water, after touch down. In a correct landing, you will see a change in the prop's speed on the final part of the descent and then you will see the flair of the aircraft.

    During this time you will possibly see an even further reduction of the prop speed as the the aircraft touches down and then further reduction in prop speed as the aircraft reduces speed on the final travel across the water.

    You will notice on this landing that there is no noticeable change in prop speed during the descent, touch down or as it proceeded along the water. Therefore we can deduce that the pilot never did reduce the throttle at any point during that landing and final travel across the water prior to tip over.

    3. Now something very important but something we are not able to ascertain in this video, rudder position! Naturally we need to keep the nose wheel, or rudder in this case, in a straight ahead position, to maintain a straight track along the water after touch down.

    He may (or may not) have had a bit of starboard rudder, which would have resulted in a turn to starboard, as we observed in the video. It is not possible to determine if that turn increased at the end due to his rudder position or simply as a result of all the other things he did wrong. This is something to take into account though, but we'll just have to wonder about it.

    4. The pilot never pulled the bar in to help reduce speed and lift once on the water. Had he done this, it would have helped to keep the boat and wing more aligned.

    So... if you remove just one of these links in the chain of events that led up to that crash, you will see that possibly the accident would not have taken place.

    To recap, he came in and landed without a flair, this meant he was too steep on touch down and too fast on the water at the same time of course. He was not 100% straight on touch down. He did not reduce engine throttle at any point during approach, touch down and travel across the water. He did not bring the bar back to help reduce speed, due to drag, and help to reduce lift of the wing.

    Not doing this would make the boat lighter on the water and cause further problems when not all lined up on the water with wing and boat. All these wrong things done in a row on a landing will result in a crash.

    Added to all this, is the fact that it was done in a FIB which is not the most stable on the water in roll, of water based trikes, and the heavier your passenger, the worse this will be. This, in my opinion, was the final link in the chain of events that caused that tip over and crash.

    Some of you may have read my comments from last year in another article on emergency water landings in a land based trike, where I talked about my experience and the speed with which everything happens and sinks.

    The speed of the trike and wing sinking in this video is a sobering thought for anyone watching, and this was with the added benefit of having an inflatable boat attached to it all. Can you image the speed that this would sink if it had been a land based trike???

    That is why in my comments, I suggested jumping out prior to touch down in an emergency ditching. Keep that in mind and for those who did not read that topic, it would be beneficial to seek it out and read through it.

    I especially suggest reading this to those stupid idiots who we see flying low over water in those dumb videos, trusting their lives to that little engine behind them, often with a poor dumb trusting passenger strapped in behind them.

    I would also wager that 99.9% of you idiot, so called pilots, have never even bothered to bring up to your poor passengers, what they should be ready to do, should the engine stop and you have to put it down in the water.

    Be honest, you KNOW you have not discussed it, because you have been too stupid to even think it might happen to you and/or been too dumb to even think about discussing it with your passenger.

    I hope these observations help you understand what went wrong in this water landing crash video above.


    Ask me about my trike book! On sale now.
  • Werner Geier
    by Werner Geier 7 years ago
    Ok,Lucian,I'm agree to 100% !!!!!!
  • Paul Hamilton
    by Paul Hamilton 7 years ago
    “In my opinion” from observing this, it looks like he landed OK on a straight path, no problem (06 seconds). After touchdown, he turned the wheel/rudder to his right to avoid hitting shore, going too fast, and now he/she is sideways (07 seconds). Now being sideways, the wing keeps going straight and it tipped over “sideways” just as a land trike would.

    From my observations, the reason he/she tipped over was turning to sharp after touchdown to avoid shore.

    Chain of events.

    1. camera rolling ( This is many times the beginning of many accidents. How many times have I heard from the widow or friend "his last words were"--- "make sure the camera is running" or "watch this". This was obviously a camera set up shot, no shaky camera, not zoomed in, close to shore, someone wanting that moment of glory same as we see on many of these accidents.)
    2. Trying to land as close as possible to shore for the best camera shot.
    3. once touched down on the water, realized that he/she was going to fast and going to hit shore.
    4. in an attempt to avoid hitting shore abruptly turned to his/her right

    The landing can be criticized but "i feel" the reason it turned over is because it has turned sideways abruptly after touchdown, just like any vehicle land trike tips over at high speed with an abrupt turn after touchdown “about to run into the camera”.
  • Paul Hamilton
    by Paul Hamilton 7 years ago
    I should add that you can see the shore at the bottom of the frame/video and if he continued straight he would have hit shore and the camera lady.
  • Rick Bishop
    by Rick Bishop 7 years ago
    I agree with you Paul he was headed straight towards the camera. He had to turn.
  • Lucian Bartosik
    by Lucian Bartosik 7 years ago
    Look again, there is absolutely no shore line visible at the bottom of any frame of the video. Yes the pilot is heading towards the camera but the camera person even zooms out somewhat at the end of the video clip and there is still no shore line visible. You can not tell too easily how close the trike was to the video camera due to no knowing what zoom range there was on the camera setting at the time of the accident.

    Yes you can get an idea about the foreshortening of objects in the background to get an idea of the zoom length at the time of shooting but this footage did not give us much help in how far away the trike was from the camera. I seriously doubt this trike was very close to shore as is surmised by Paul, because of the depth of the water, known by the wing going straight down sideways, almost it's full wing span.

    If this were close to shore, so close that the pilot felt he was about to run onto the shore line, I feel the water depth would have been considerably more shallow, is is almost always the case (read the words Almost always).

    Therefore I feel confident in saying this was not almost at the shore line and I feel confident that no shoreline is visible at any time at the bottom of the video frame from what I can see, not even when the camera person has zoomed out somewhat right at the end of the footage.

    From his landing I would say the pilot is inexperienced and I would agree that he was flying for some camera glory, which he most certainly has gotten now, though not in the way he was probably hoping for.

    As for all the turning when on the water, I still feel this was due to lack of experience and due to possibly lack of attention to where he feet were pressing regarding the rudder position, which is what I originally mentioned above. The FIBs are easy to topple even when not going very fast, while in a turn on the water.
  • Larry  Mednick
    by Larry Mednick 7 years ago
    Hey I got news for you guys... The rudder would have been in plain view from our angle had it been down.

    I won't swear to it, but I think I remember the FIB cannot be landed with the rudder up. Any one know?

    It sure looks like he touched down at about a 15 degree crab angle. you can see their bodies get thrown to their left at point of touch down. Then that big towering wing was also thrown to the left which kept the boat on it's left side which kept it turning right, which caused more cetrifugal force on the big heavy towering wing which rolled the boat.
  • E Harv
    by E Harv 7 years ago
    As a student pilot and owner of a FIB, I've been studying this video and following all of the comments very closely. From my newbie perspective, everyone seems to have correctly identified a series of faults with the landing, but I do believe Larry hit the bullseye as to the major overriding problem: no rudder. If you look at some Google images of the FIB flying in the air, the rudder is clearly visible below the bottom of the hull when lowered. I haven't had much time in the FIB yet, but I believe most people keep the rudder down even when flying. As long as it's straight, it doesn't seem that there would be much of a disadvantage to leaving it down. What I can't figure out though is what that big thing is sticking up from the hull once it rolls over onto its back. That's too BIG to be the rudder, whatever it is.
  • Abid Farooqui
    by Abid Farooqui 7 years ago
    I know why it flipped :).
    Disclaimer: I have no float or water trike experience so this high level technical analysis is free and worth about that much :).

    2) The dude did not flair and touched down too fast and too hard. What's up with so many people doing that.
    3) His FIB carriage was 15 degrees off in alignment with the keel of the wing. They need vertical stabs aft of CG and better hangblock/hangpoint and may be possible even a stiffer mast material

  • Mike-in- Thailand
    by Mike-in- Thailand 7 years ago
    4) There was no yellow whatsoever on his trike/wing.
  • Abid Farooqui
    by Abid Farooqui 7 years ago
    Oh sorry Mike for missing that most important point :).
    I hope both pilot and passenger are safe. As Lucian said I was very surprised that even with an air filled dinghy the thing went under like a bat out of hell
  • Abid Farooqui
    by Abid Farooqui 7 years ago
    Oops I spelled flare like Larry. Sorry
  • Abid Farooqui
    by Abid Farooqui 7 years ago
    Actually my point #3 is even negated a bit for this particular accident because the dingy did start re-aligning itself with the keel of the wing by the time of touchdown. He just landed too hard and fast (hardly any flare) and then he seems to want to turn right with the dingy at a high speed. You do that with any trike at fast enough speed and it will flip over
  • Wesley Frey
    by Wesley Frey 7 years ago
    I am pretty sure I saw a rudder sticking up after the upside down shot at 20 sec. If it were a land trike we would drag the back wheels to align the trike with the direction of travel. If we plop a three wheel anything on the surface, traveling sideways it will turn over. I would have aborted the landing and made a better approach more directly into the wind, since water doesn't restrict the direction of landing. I instructed in a student's Pegasus last week that would not flare the nose wheel, but we could keep it light enough in the cross wind landings to pull it into the direction of travel before the nose wheel grabbed the pavement. Pulling the wing in too early would have made the nose wheel grab and turn the trike abruptly. Maybe turn over.
    Thanks for all the discussion on this. It is very helpful to all 3 wheelers.
  • Paul Hamilton
    by Paul Hamilton 7 years ago
    Weather or not he was close to shore, going to fast or not, he was fine until he turned to his right for what ever reason (could be no rudder or steering with rudder not wanting to hit shore).
  • Jan Ferreira
    by Jan Ferreira 7 years ago
    Hey Guys, I love the analysis and comments from the pilots here but how about asking the unlucky pilot what he thinks went wrong. I am sure someone here must be able to track him down. Maybe the manufacturer will know who this FIB belongs to. Just a thought.
  • E Harv
    by E Harv 7 years ago
    No rudder. No rudder. No rudder. It's as simple as that.

    The rudder is not an option when landing the FIB. It MUST be down, or the boat hull would be like a skipping stone. The rudder is clearly not down when he is in flight and touches the water. Perhaps that is the rudder sticking up once the FIB rolls over, but if so, then it was only thrust into that position by the force of the crash somehow. But again, there is clearly no rudder upon landing.

    Perhaps if he hadn't been landing so fast, with no flare, and sideways, he could have gotten lucky and pulled it off without the rudder. The hull does seem to track for a moment. But landing without a rudder is like landing a land trike with no front wheel. That wouldn't be very pretty either.
  • Paul Hamilton
    by Paul Hamilton 7 years ago
    I agree, if there was no rudder, this is a good reason for turning so abruptly which caused the rollover. In my opinion, he would have been ok and slowed down safely without the 45 degree turn in 1 second. This will flip any top heavy boat or three wheeled trike. With all this good discussion I am leaning towards the no rudder which caused the turn that flipped him.

    I did half heartedly try to track the pilot down as my first effort but no luck.
  • Robert Wascher
    by Robert Wascher 7 years ago
    Bingo E Harv!

    And you didn't take up a lot space to say it! LOL

    Plus you didn't call anybody stupid idiots for trusting their flying machines and wanting to fly low! LOL
  • Alf  Jessup
    by Alf Jessup 7 years ago
    I agree with Larry & E Harv and everyone else who said the rudder wasn't down.
    That is the main reason the FIB rolled over as it had no directional control on the hull once on the water.
    The pilot needs a good kick in the a$$ for not doing his pre landing check and luckily the both got away relitively unharmed.
    I guess the damage to the pilots pride and to aircraft is suitable punishment for no completing the checks
  • Alf  Jessup
    by Alf Jessup 7 years ago
    The rudder might be down when it rolled over but it wasn't down before he touched down.
    end of story
  • Lee Schmitt
    by Lee Schmitt 7 years ago
    Bingo E Harv!

    "And you didn't take up a lot space to say it! LOL

    Plus you didn't call anybody stupid idiots for trusting their flying machines and wanting to fly low! LOL " Ditto!!
  • Qazi  Ajmal
    by Qazi Ajmal 7 years ago
    i watch this clip more time and i pilot make high descend in water. carefully watch movie 0.06 second to 0.09 sec. watch carefully when boat is touch water surface control bar go to other side and boat wrong side and this is the main reasons. so not quick land on wet surface,,,,,,,
  • Kevin Potvin
    by Kevin Potvin 7 years ago
    In my opinion;
    Landed with the wind. The wind normally blows off shore during the day. Look at the spray, it seems to be blowing on shore with the crashed FIB.
    Regardless of whether the landing was straight into the wind which it is supposed to be done, especially in a water landing, the approach speed was way way too fast, and little or no flare occurred resulting in the hull bonking onto the water causing it to come over to starboard. The heavy impact and the weight of the wing and passengers exaggerates the mess they were already in. A hard rudder correction might have got them pointed back into the same direction as the wing, but it all happened too quick and the pilot did not react in time. Had he got it steered back to port they might have run up on shore but by then the speed would have been greatly reduced and likely less damage.
    Lack of proper training in a FIB and inexperience in general, plus the usual play for the camera all combined to make a preventable bad day.
  • Kevin Potvin
    by Kevin Potvin 7 years ago
    Correction. oops just realized I messed up my first sentence re: wind
    It normally blows on shore during the day, therefore requiring an offshore landing.
  • Robert Wascher
    by Robert Wascher 7 years ago
    Just watched this again, and the crash seems to have thrown the rudder down, or Up in his final position. Ouch that hurts! Cruel irony.
  • Victor Agadzi
    by Victor Agadzi 7 years ago
    Hi Guys, thought i posted, but cannot find it so will try again.My 2 cents about the whole deal. Larry is right.That is the ONLY reason this happened. Yes, the pilot was landing hard and fast but with full rudder control, a non-event...NO Accident.
    The hull and the wing corrected just before touch down. Immediately after touch down, hull went one way and the wing originally tried to track straight but was brought back into line by the hangblock. The high center of gravity of the flying boat and hull design absolutely did not help the situation with the high speed turn.What may have helped(MAYBE although unlikely) would have been a steep wing turn to the pilots right(right wing down,left up in the high speed turn), which even in the most experienced pilots hands may still have failed, if the hull stuck or caught an edge,just like a Snowboard....
    The design of the FIB V hull( compounded with lack of rudder control ) caused the front end of the V hull to be redirected only just slightly(initially) by a small wave or water force. This effect was multiplied many times due to the high speed and lack of ability to correct with the rudder. The result, ....CRASH....BANG..... THANKFULLY No Deaths.
    My Trimar Air is designed to have the rudder always deployed(on land and sea) and all one has to do is maintain directional control. I'm not sure how the Flying boats rudder works . A CHECKLIST for takeoff landing eliminates Fogeting critical issues.
    My Amphib is available for sale at barnstormers.com...Search Trimar Air.
    If not sold by the end of March, I will be demonstrating what a fine machine this is at the Splash In at Lakeland this year.
    thanks all..Just my 2 cents in the anatomy and dissection of a flying boat crash...
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