Hijack, Low Flying, Airport Stress and more…

14 Feb 14 2 Comments

Today, a selection of fun and interesting links that I found on the Web just for you! I recommend all of these articles and videos as interesting and informative.

Please note that videos and other embedded items won’t work on the mailing list, so if you’ve received this post in your inbox, you may need to click through to see everything.

File this one under “It seemed like a good idea at the time!”

Drunk Ukrainian fails in Kharkov-Istanbul hijack bid – News – World – The Voice of Russia

Ukrainian authorities have reported an attempt to hijack a passenger airliner flying from Kharkov-Istanbul and specified that the plane made a scheduled landing in Istanbul. The suspect turned out to be drunk. The “Passenger was in a state of extreme intoxication and tried to go into the crew cabin shouting “Let’s all go to Sochi”, Ukrainian Security Service stated.

I’m not even sure that I should post these, for fear of encouraging stunts like this. The guy came too damn close to that wing, that’s for sure.

LiveLeak.com – Airplane Fly By!!!!

Alternate Headline:

3 Suicidal Assholes Nearly Ruin Perfectly Good Airplane

The story is a little too pat but it did make me smile.

To the Ticket Agent at the Delta Counter | Josh Misner, Ph.D.

I began to feel enraged at seeing this outpouring of selfishness and willful ignorance. My determination to make the connection was growing by the millisecond, though, and as soon as we were out of the gate, the three of us sprinted — or at least, as fast as a 6-year-old’s legs can run.

The 2014 Singapore Airshow is happening right now and Airbus have posted a great clip of the best of the show so far, even if it does understandably have a bit of an Airbus bias. :)

I’d never heard of training flights involving taking off from the roads, but it makes sense to reduce the dependency on (easily bombed) airfields.

Watch a Fighter Jet Take Off From a Freeway | Autopia | Wired.com

Finland’s air force, mindful of the fact motorists might be just a bit freaked out by a warplane approaching, cleared the road of traffic, but other nations aren’t as considerate. A commander in the Swedish Armed Forces told SVT (Swedish) that the Russians are particularly cavalier about their exercises. As this dash-cam video shows, a pilot had no problem making his approach directly above civilian drivers during a training exercise in Belarus, who collaborates with Russia’s military.

A very good post on wake turbulence and how to avoid it.

How To Avoid Wake Turbulence | Boldmethod

It’s one of those easy-to-make mistakes: I have to admit, I did it once.

Shame the headline doesn’t understand the difference between a landing and an approach, though…

Planes landed at wrong airports 150 times over 2 decades – NY Daily News

You’ve got these runway lights, and you are looking at them, and they’re saying: `Come to me, come to me. I will let you land.’ They’re like the sirens of the ocean,” Michael Barr, a former Air Force pilot who teaches aviation safety at the University of Southern California, told AP.
According to the AP tally released Monday, there’s been 35 landings and 115 approaches or aborted landing attempts at wrong airports by commercial passenger and cargo planes over more than two decades.

This is sure to raise some eyebrows.

TSA Agent Confession – POLITICO Magazine

I hated it from the beginning. It was a job that had me patting down the crotches of children, the elderly and even infants as part of the post-9/11 airport security show. I confiscated jars of homemade apple butter on the pretense that they could pose threats to national security. I was even required to confiscate nail clippers from airline pilots—the implied logic being that pilots could use the nail clippers to hijack the very planes they were flying.

And finally, I’d hate for anyone to miss the currently viral video of a go-pro camera filming as it fell out of an aircraft.

Category: Fun Stuff,


  • A few nice snippets.
    The journalists seem to have gone viral about the Ukrainian hijack. Well, there is nothing like making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear if it helps to sell the papers.

    The one about the TSA: well, it sounds familiar and why am I not surprised ?
    Most of what we see and encounter when going through airport security is mainly window dressing or a knee-jerk reaction to a previous attempt that failed.

    When I had to go to the USA for some simulator training, now already more than 10 years ago, I had to get TSA permission. A lengthy process that involved having to travel to Paris to be finger printed.
    The process totally ignored the fact that I already held airline pilot’s licences issued by the civil aviation authorities in various countries, the European JAA, as well as the USA Federal Aviation Authority.
    The process was lengthy and totally superfluous. But prior to “9-11” the authorities had not acted on information by concerned flying schools who had students who were not interested in learning to take-off and land and aircraft.
    So the knee-jerk reaction was to take the stupidity out on bona-fide pilots who long possessed the skills necessary to fly an aircraft into a building.
    Which I doubt I could do, not even with a gun to my head.
    Same with the restrictions on liquids: At some time the authorities during the Blair administration in the UK did not act on specific information they had received.
    Bombs went off in London and one guy was caught before he could detonate a crude bomb in his shoes. But now we cannot bring a bottle of water through airport security. This rule will never be reversed because airport shops are doing good business selling little bottles of water at inflated prices.
    Years ago I made a bet with a senior security officer at an airport that I could smuggle his gun through the airport X-ray.
    This was officially sanctioned as a test and the gun did pass unnoticed. The agent went pale.
    But I must assume that newer, better technology will have been introduced by now.
    But all this nonsense of taking off belts and shoes is unlikely to catch many if any terrorists.
    The real work more often than not has been done beforehand and the would-be terrorist should have been arrested before he could even arrive at the airport, let alone pass through security checks.
    But there is a good reason not to discontinue the checks.
    Passengers who have nothing to hide will feel reasonably relaxed, a terrorist will be stressed.
    The security checks will assist slowing down the flow of people through the security check.
    This will help trained experts to look for signs such as sweat on the forehead, nervous behaviour and other signs of stress and identify people who should be taken aside for a more thorough search. At many if not most European airports these highly trained experts, usually Special Branch police officers, are present. You may not be able to identify them but they are there.
    I have been through several airport security courses and am not at liberty to tell what we were told and shown but believe me, these experts are unbelievably good and have a photographic memory that is nothing short of awesome.
    I have seen one of those guys in action and I am still impressed, many years later!
    So do not be too frustrated if you pass through security. The agents just do their job.

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