AV-8B No Gear Landing On USS Bataan
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[AV-8B No Gear Landing On USS Bataan]
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U.S. Marine Corps Capt. William Mahoney, Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron (VMM) 263 (Reinforced). 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), AV-8B Harrier aircraft pilot, talks about his experience during a controlled landing after his front landing gear malfunctioned on his aircraft aboard the USS Bataan (LHD 5), at sea, June 7, 2014. Elements of the 22nd MEU, embarked aboard Bataan, are operating in the U.S. 6th Fleet area of operations to augment U.S. Crisis Response forces in the region. (U.S. Marine Corps video by Sgt. Alisa J. Helin/Released)
Sgt. Alisa Helin
22nd MEU Public Affairs
alisa.helin @ bataan.usmc.mil
June 7, 2014
1st Lt. Andrew Bolla
22nd MEU Public Affairs Officer
andrew.bolla @ bataan.usmc.mil
William Mahoney: Source: LYBIO.net
So it was a normal flight day. We are going out to re-punch currency for landing in the ship in the evening. There is nothing crazy about it.
I took off, as I was always climbing away from the deck. I put my gear up, and realized I had a gear malfunction. So I immediately pulled the power back, slowed the aircraft down. So I wouldn’t over speed the landing gear. And then I went just above the ship at about 2,000 feet and started talking to ‘Paddles’ whose, another jet pilot in the tower that controls us when we land they’re also up there, if we have a problem, they have their book reader, they help us along through the situation, since we’re a single piloted aircraft. For a while, I flew by the ship, I did an approach at 300 feet, so he could see my landing here, and give me an idea of what was going on and determine the miners here did not come back down.
At this point, it’s time to figure out how do I get the jet back on the deck safely with only three landing gear. So eventually, Major Murphy came over the radio and told me that ship had this amazing invention that was like, basically, a stool that was built specifically for this reason. The ship has a lighting system on what we call SPOT-7 that we use to land at an exact spot every time.
So, the difference with this landing was that I was going to step it down 50, 40, 30, 20 feet to make sure I was aligned, and stabilized before Major Murphy would clear me to land to 20 feet. So that’s what we had the best chance to actually put the nose on the stool. So I come in, and at this point, I’ve kind of forgotten that I don’t have nose gear, I just focused on landing, that’s what I decided, I did. So I’m at 20 feet stabilizing, and I can’t see the stool. I don’t even know it’s there, I didn’t see it coming over the end of the ship, I looked for it, I remember looking for it, and thinking oh boy, this is going to get interesting. So I never saw the stool. So I go to idle.
I remember my main gear hitting and also my nose dropping, and it dropped more than I expected. But at that point, I was alone for the ride. And I don’t remember feeling it bounce like it did on the video tape.
I remember feeling you just kind of hit and that was it. But then I had to sit there for a minute and remember how to turn the – shut the jet off and everything. It was a pretty big relief. I didn’t realize how much I was shaking until I got out of the aircraft.
The most interesting part looking back at the video, and watching the video was I didn’t realize it, and nobody was on the flight deck when I over came over to land, in case something went wrong, went bad. Now that was me, having everyone come out and congratulating me and stuff, it was little overwhelming. First, for a moment, I just wanted to catch my breath. We pride ourselves at landing on the ship, perfectly like this in the same spot every time and doing the same thing over and over again.
William Mahoney: Source: LYBIO.net
But there is no way to train to land in this kind of situation.
AV-8B No Gear Landing On USS Bataan. I remember looking for it, and thinking oh boy, this is going to get interesting. So I never saw the stool. Science & Technology Transcript, Dialogue, Remarks, Saying, Quotes, Words And Text.