Taking the door off so you can see....

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angry inch
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Taking the door off so you can see....

#1 Post by angry inch » Sat Feb 12, 2011 5:33 pm

Is it a normal/common practice for helicopter pilots in low vis situations to land & remove the door (stick it in back with the pax I guess..) so you can see better & keep going? We're talking about basic passenger ferrying here... no slinging etc. I have a friend who says his regular pilot does this... I find it slightly disturbing.
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sky's the limit
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Re: Taking the door off so you can see....

#2 Post by sky's the limit » Sat Feb 12, 2011 9:38 pm

Hi Inch,

It is always easier to see with the door off, which is good, but we're talking about VERY bad weather here, much less than legal vis which is 1/2sm - talking creepy, crawly bad. It's a contingency ONLY when you get stuck - even then - and to actually land and take it off, stuff it in the back with pax, then take off again, is a pretty strong indicator of terrible decision making. To do it often is a major red flag.

Some types are better in low wx than others, the Astar is not good in the rain compared to a 500 or 206, but getting the door off an Astar mid trip is not something you would do.

Were I this guy's Boss, and I saw him land back at base with the door off and pax board, he'd be getting a good talk. Twice, he'd be gone. I've flown in all the nasty spots, Coast, mountains, arctic, and if you let yourself get to the point where that is necessary more than once or twice, you're doing something very wrong.

We all go to the point of doing this, but some never learn that you shouldn't.

stl

I should add that, I often start flying with the door off on the coast or on mining jobs, as there is always slinging to do, and it is much better, but to get to the point where you land mid flight to take it off is not good at all.
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The Mole
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Re: Taking the door off so you can see....

#3 Post by The Mole » Mon Feb 14, 2011 6:40 pm

The short answer is NO ITS NOT COMMON. Does it happen, yes...
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Heliian
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Re: Taking the door off so you can see....

#4 Post by Heliian » Sat Feb 26, 2011 11:25 am

The only reason the door comes off is for slinging or other aerial work. To remove the door so you can crawl home is just a stupid idea and doesn't make sense at all. If you're by yourself go ahead and remove the bloody windsheild if you like but with paying passengers?, C'MON MAN!!!! None of the guys I have worked with in 10 years has ever had to remove a door to see due to weather and I imagine not one operator would put up with that type of shinnanigans.
angry inch wrote: I have a friend who says his regular pilot does this... I find it slightly disturbing.
I'm not one to call people names, but this pilot is a dumbass.
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