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iranianjumper

opening door during flight

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iranianjumper

to compile an article about dangers of an open door during taxi , take off and climb to altitude in a jump plane , I need all your tips , advices and refrences .
thank you all



For many years, jump aircraft didn't have doors. It was never a problem. In fact it meant that you could get out of the aircraft quicker in an emergency.

Apart from comfort and a quicker climb rate, the only advantage a closed door mitigates is that of a parachute accidentally going out the door. But that can still happen when the door opens on jump run and people are moving around in the plane.

I prefer an open door, but that is what most of my early jumps involved, so I am used to it.
My computer beat me at chess, It was no match for me at kickboxing....

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obelixtim



Apart from comfort and a quicker climb rate, the only advantage a closed door mitigates is that of a parachute accidentally going out the door.



To be fair, that's a pretty big fucking advantage. ;)

It cuts the 'kill-everybody' time down from 15 minutes to just a couple.

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The only issue I would like to bring up is to have a door open not only effects the time and fuel in the climb rate, but a pilot chute getting out the door can be a bad day, and if every one is following the rules, and wearing their seat belt until 1000/1500ft, and a pilot cute gets out the door, thats a real bad day.

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My dz runs door closed during takeoff to 1500. The door doesn't open until all seatbelts are off. At about 6000 feet it gets closed again so the video guys can do midflight interview of the tandem and doesn't open again until we get the red light. When it's cold out it just stays closed until jumprun

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Door open while taxiing is a tiny risk.
Definitely keep it closed from take-off to 1,500 feet.
Depending upon the type of door, you might be able to open it a little for half of the climb. Then keep it closed until jump run.
If a door opens accidentally, I scan for loose pilot-chutes, then resume breathing and relaxing.

Two other factors affect when you can open the door.

First, some doors will be damaged if opened when the plane is flying too fast.
Secondly, in busy airspace, the pilot needs to wait - until air traffic control approves the jump - before opening the door. The pilot opening the door is the signal that ATC has approved the jump.

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Yep same for my DZ. We also close it around 6K not only for video for tandems but myself and other people start to move around a little bit as we do gear/pin checks and practice touching emergency handles and it would suck for a pilot chute to get out of the door.

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Quote

you might be able to open it a little for half of the climb.



The DZ established a couple years ago that doors remain closed until 1500 ft, and then its either fully open, or completely closed, soon after there was a military incident of a main deploying with a partially opened door. Killed the jumper, damaged the door but no other damage or casualties.
Remster

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To clarify: risks of opening doors in flight varies radically with the type of door.
1. Cessna top-hinged
2. Sliding external side door
3. Slide up internal door
4. Tail ramp

1. Cessna top-hinged door is only available as a Supplementary Type Certificate. STCs include airspeed limits and whether the pilot must wear a pilot emergency parachute (normal).
Typically the pilot slows the airplane, yells "DOOR" and twists a handle to unlock the door. Then he/she does the secret dance-on-rudder-pedals to prevent the door from slamming against the underside of the wing.
If the Cessna makes multiple passes (e.g. Static-line students) the pilot usually closes the door between passes. The pilot definitely closes the door before descending.
The greatest risk is if a pilot huge gets loose when the door is open. The preferred response involves diving after the offending pilot-chute. If the chute inflates before you exit, it will try to drag you THROUGH the door frame ..... around ..... through.
Since most Cessnas have control cables and fuel lines hidden in door frames, things can get real messy .... real fast!
A few Cessnas have gotten lucky (?) and landed under fully-inflated round canopies ...... not the recommended configuration.
The other risk is hitting the horizontal tail during a pre-mature deployment.

2. Sliding external door (Airvan, Porter and many helicopters. Only opened when the pilot tells you to. Sometimes the pilot signals "door open" with pretty coloured lights. The best airplanes have labels beside lights. Second best is briefing every jumper who sits beside the door. Some external sliding doors can be closed by the pilot ..... if not, the pilot needs to limit airspeed during descent.
Risks are similar to above.

3. Slide-up internal doors are popular on airplanes with the side cargo door aft of the wing: Cessna U206 & 208 and most light twins. Jumpers still need approval from the pilot before opening the door (see above about signal lights).
Since SUID are the easiest to open in flight, some DZs allow jumpers to open doors a bit between 1500' and 5000'. Most insist that all seat-belts be disconnected before opening the door. Smart jumpers pat their handles and glance at their buddies' rigs before opening the door. This allows cool air into the cabin on hot, muggy summer days. Above 5000' all doors should be closed while tandems connect students, pin-checks, etc. Even if jumpers near the door don't hear it, some open doors create nasty air turbulence in the cockpit making it impossible for pilots to hear air traffic controllers.
Risks are as above.

4. Tail ramps are the most fun to jump because you can stand upright ... like a Neanderthal .... Er ..... Um ..... you get the joke?
Opening ramps too early is scary because it feels like you might slide out of the airplane/helicopter without seatbelts. Tail ramps are normally left closed until the start of jump-run. They are usually only opened by specially-trained staff members. Ramps on large (20+ jumpers) military aircraft are opened and closed - hydraulically - by the crew.
Ramps prose T the lowest risk if a parachute deploys pre-maturely. The hapless parachutist disappears out the back!

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Something to add that an open door can make a significant difference in aircraft performance. On twins, ex skyvan with standard engines, the open door single engine climb is negative while with a closed door it is positive (with good engines, proper loading and proper technique by the pilot).

In addition, the operating instructions from some AADs specify that the aircraft door must remain closed until a certain altitude (1500' I think).

In general, SOP for the DZ/AC will indicate when the door may be opened and most every one will specify that it must remain closed on takeoff and initial climb.

-Michael

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I'm usually in "charge" of the door. Around here we like to open it, this means it stays closed during take off and up until the seatbelts off altitude (this varies, 1500 or 2000, depending on which DZ I'm at).
I always try to make sure that I get a "thumbs up" from the AFFIs and the TIs in the plane before I open it, in the first case it's more of a "courtesy" but in the second case it's to make sure they hooked up their attachment points to their passengers, switching from seatbelts to harness, before we open a fucking door with people that are neither fastened to an aircraft NOR a parachute.
This sometimes means that wingsuiters will complain because they are hot and they can't wait the extra 20-30 seconds it might take me to make sure everything is in order before I open the door, poor babies are sweaty. It's one of the few cases I'll rudely tell fellow jumpers to fuck off in front of everybody, it pisses me off beyond measure if they can't wait a few extra seconds to make sure a passenger is properly secured before I open a door in an aircraft (and most people agree with the fuck off sentiment).
I'm standing on the edge
With a vision in my head
My body screams release me
My dreams they must be fed... You're in flight.

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Not replying to anyone, but reading this thread made me think of a scenario.

In the event of a forced landing, would it be better to have the door open whilst descending?

I guess that you've got to weigh up the risk of someone/something rolling out whilst the plane is descending/crashing against the plane crashing and suffering from some fuselage damage that means that door won't open and people not being able to get out from a wreck that might be on fire...

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Refer to hackish's last post.
Some planes fly miserably with a door open.
Other operating handbooks (single-engine Cessnas) say to unlatch the door and push it slightly open before a forced landing.

Both options are best discussed with your jump-pilot long before a forced landing.
Maybe this should be a topic during SAFETY DAY in the spring???

As for the risk of being trapped in burning wreckage ....
A: Few jump-planes are destroyed by fire (see Annette O'Neil's series of articles from a year ago) ....
B: I would rather be awake for the fire, belted into my seat, etc.

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tikl68

Yep same for my DZ. We also close it around 6K not only for video for tandems but myself and other people start to move around a little bit as we do gear/pin checks and practice touching emergency handles and it would suck for a pilot chute to get out of the door.



Your not even half way up and people start moving around? You people drink to much coffee.

If its 80 degrees on the ground its 55 at 6k and the people by the door are getting cold. That's why the door gets closed...
Replying to: Re: Stall On Jump Run Emergency Procedure? by billvon

If the plane is unrecoverable then exiting is a very very good idea.

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Nope dont drink coffee. Sometimes it 6k sometimes its 7k but it is rarely due to temp. I jump in Elsinore and Perris and during the summer time(like right now) the temp on the ground usually is hovering around, I dont know something like, 105-110, and no I dont actually start doing my gear checks til about 8k. We rarely see 80 degrees, even in winter. Like myself and one other poster it is also for the tandem video interview.

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Di0

This sometimes means that wingsuiters will complain because they are hot and they can't wait the extra 20-30 seconds it might take me to make sure everything is in order before I open the door, poor babies are sweaty.



The amount of time I need to open a door / to exit is inversely proportional to the amount of people telling me to get a f*cking move on.

Funny how that works.. :)
"That formation-stuff in freefall is just fun and games but with an open parachute it's starting to sound like, you know, an extreme sport."
~mom

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A scenario YET to be mentioned here... and usually Only likely with a Cessna Top Hinged door.....

Would be An Inadvertent Door Opening,,,, either by having the handle hit.... Or by failure of the side jamb Pins to Hold, maybe from Being NOT fully engaged...and occurring DURING the Take-Off Roll and while racing down the runway.......[:/]:|
Such a sudden occurrence can create trouble.... Best, imho, for all Jumpers to remain still, remain calm,,,, NOT distract the PIC at this crucial moment... and To NOT attempt to reach Out ,,, in any sort of effort to CLose that door......>:( All jumpers need to sit tight....with all body parts remaining Inside the cabin.... and to note the need to " protect all Handles "
Allow the Pilot to rotate , complete the Take-off, set the trim if needed, come Off the Flaps..... and THEN address the door issue....
Anything else can create an unsafe situation can distract the Pilot... and can in some cases lead to real trouble :(..... Sit tight...await instructions from the Pilot.... Get safely OFF the ground,,,, and THEN deal with the door..

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jimmytavino

NOT distract the PIC at this crucial moment... and To NOT attempt to reach Out ,,, in any sort of effort to CLose that door.



So you might be thinking of, what was it, the jumper in NY state who fell to his death at low altitude while trying to close a Cessna door that had popped open.

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pchapman

*** NOT distract the PIC at this crucial moment... and To NOT attempt to reach Out ,,, in any sort of effort to CLose that door.



So you might be thinking of, what was it, the jumper in NY state who fell to his death at low altitude while trying to close a Cessna door that had popped open.

NTSB Identification: ERA10LA389
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, August 01, 2010 in Newfane, NY
Aircraft: CESSNA A185F, registration: N4976E
Injuries: 6 Serious.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed.

On August 1, 2010, about 1420 eastern daylight time, a Cessna A185F, N4976E, was substantially damaged when it impacted trees, during the initial climb after takeoff from Hollands International Airport (85N), Newfane, New York. The certificated commercial pilot and four passengers were seriously injured. One passenger was killed. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan had been filed for the local skydiving flight that was conducted under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

During a telephone interview, the pilot reported that he had completed seven or eight uneventful flights prior to the accident. A jump instructor was on board the accident flight, with a student and a videographer; and two additional "experienced" jumpers. The two jumpers intended to exit the airplane at an altitude of 5,000 feet, and the parachute instructor intended to conduct a tandem jump with the student from an altitude of 12,500 feet.

The flight departed from runway 25, a 2,875-foot-long, 75-foot-wide, turf runway. The airplane accelerated and lifted off normally; however, during rotation the jump door, located on the right side of the airplane, opened. The pilot said he was not concerned with the door, which would not have critically impacted the airplane's performance; however, one of the experienced parachutists attempted to secure the door. The pilot yelled at him to stop, however, the parachutist continued to attempt to secure the door to the point where he was partially outside of the airplane. The pilot physically grabbed the parachutist and tired to pull him back into the airplane. During this time, the pilot became distracted, which resulted in the airplane veering left toward trees, while flying at a low airspeed. The airplane subsequently struck a stand of trees and impacted the ground.

The airplane came to rest inverted in a wooded area, with the roof of the cabin and empennage separated.

Examination of the airplane by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector did not reveal any mechanical malfunctions. In addition, the pilot reported that the airplane performed as expected, without any mechanical issues.

The inspector noted that the jump door, which was hinged to open upward, was separated and in the latched position. The jump door and surrounding structure were distorted due to impact damage.

The videographer noted that the door was checked prior to takeoff and appeared to be secured.

The pilot reported 4,010 hours of total flight experience on his most recent application for an FAA second-class medical certificate, which was dated April 27, 2010. He estimated that he had flown about 300 hours in the accident airplane.

The reported weather at an airport located about 12 miles southwest of the accident site, at 1353, was: wind from 110 degrees at 3 knots; visibility 10 statute miles; few clouds at 4,800 feet, scattered clouds at 12,000 and 25,000 feet; temperature 28 degrees Celsius (C); dew point 16 degrees C; altimeter 29.98 inches of mercury.
Replying to: Re: Stall On Jump Run Emergency Procedure? by billvon

If the plane is unrecoverable then exiting is a very very good idea.

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pchapman

*** NOT distract the PIC at this crucial moment... and To NOT attempt to reach Out ,,, in any sort of effort to CLose that door.



So you might be thinking of, what was it, the jumper in NY state who fell to his death at low altitude while trying to close a Cessna door that had popped open.

Yes..............[:/]
we lost a Good friend due to those circumstances.....:(
although you are incorrect to use the words... "fell to his death ".. seat belts WERE in use. Those In the cabin remained so, as the plane encountered the trees. The Deceased was on life support for about 5 days... and then succumbed to his injuries . :(:(

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