Wed, Dec 12, 2012
Pilot Error, Software Issues, Mechanical Failures All Cited As Causes
Internal Air Force investigation reports indicate that the service is losing drones at an unacceptably high rate at civilian airports similar to an accident which occurred in the Seychelles in April. In that accident, an inexperienced operator flying an MQ-9 Reaper (similar aircraft pictured in USAF photo) launched the aircraft without permission, mishandled the flight controls, and wound up crashing it onto the runway without its landing gear deployed. It skidded into the ocean off the end of the runway.
In an enterprise report in the Washington Post, documents obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request show that there have been numerous accidents involving military UAVs at civilian airports over the past two years. The reports consistently cite pilot error, software issues, mechanical failures, and inadequate coordination with civilian air traffic controllers in the accidents.
The paper reports that there have been numerous instances of Predator and Reaper accidents occurring near non-military airports, sometimes with civilian contractors operating the aircraft. Some have been under the auspices of the CIA, which is basing UAVs at a civilian airport in Ethiopia for missions over Somalia.
The accidents have not gone unnoticed by those expressing concerns about the FAA's plan to allow the operation of unmanned aircraft in the National Air Space (NAS). The Air Force says the accident rate is declining as the technology matures, and that the incident rate is now comparable to that of the service's fleet of F-16 fighter jets at a similar stage of development.
The Company That Won't Answer Questions, May Finally Have To Do So ANN has been bombarded with info and reports concerning the health and well-being of the Icon Aircraft program...>[...]
Also: B-29 Doc Airworthy, Aero-Calendar, Charles Taylor, Boeing-Vietjet, Flexjet Buy, Indian Mini-Shuttle, 777X Composite Wing Center Textron Aviation has finally revealed further >[...]
Make The ‘EAA Four Corners’ Your First Stop At EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2016 Even for those of us who have attended EAA AirVenture many times, when you first walk onto th>[...]
The Medallion Foundation The Medallion Foundation, a non-profit aviation safety organization, embraces mentors and advocates for all aspects of aviation: Student pilots to airline >[...]
A display indication given to the pilot by the traffic alert and collision avoidance systems (TCAS II) recommending a maneuver to increase vertical separation relative to an intrud>[...]