||[Aug. 3rd, 2006|01:50 pm]
The American Caliban
mendel alerts me to this photo taken by his father. Apparently Canadians are pretty hardcore about their national day of celebration, enough so that they're willing to give happy, water-bottle-waving celebrants a shot at the noise, dust blast, and extreme fucking danger of a military helicopter landing zone.
I know they're not in the roped-off zone etc. etc. but if it was me I'd be some distance from that scene unless it was imperative that I get in the helicopter right away. I have no need to follow in Vic Morrow's... er... headsteps?
Mack, Kenn, can you confirm that this is insane?
This is echoed verbatim numerous FAA manuals, and also in training for "meet the public" type pilots, like air ambulance guys. It's exquisitely simple to express: they're interesting, shiny, novel, and so, evolution dictates paradoxically that we're drawn to novelty. "Hey, Marge, let's go look at that neat helicopter."
At least they'll listen to authority--if somebody in a helmet and flight suit waves them off, maybe they'll leave. How about the semi-trained guys, like the poor bastard security guard at the hospital. Jury found 49% fault for pilot in command, 51% for the poor bastard security guard, when:
He decided to help, everybody likes helpful people. In this case, he helped load a gurney ONTO (i.e., there's no urgency, no emerging situation) the helicopter. And walked into the tail rotor. His dying words were, "I got too close, they told me, but I got too close." Meaning, back in security guard school no doubt someone mumbled, "Don't walk into the tail rotor which is invisible."
And let's talk about air shows. Well, you've done that. I like the kid on the left, he's been betrayed. I'd say from his posture that both of his eyes are filled with sand, but he has 99 more problems, and that's why he's trying TO COVER HIS ENTIRE EXISTENCE with his horribly finite skinny little arms.
My friend and truly excellent instructor Dennis is now an air ambulance pilot. He says approaching a accident scene (say a car crash on a highway) looks exactly like a kicked over ant hill.
I also like the guy toasting the scene.
2006-08-04 03:33 am (UTC)
I see, it's a water bottle, is it not?
You know, I honestly thought it was a can of cheez whiz. Just another wacky day at the landing zone, hoisting the old cheez whiz.
i'm by no means an expert, but my late uncle was stationed at el toro, in a helicopter squadron. when i was a kid, i'd go out with my mom and aunt to go watch my uncle's squadron land. it was drilled into my little skull that the tail rotors were a heinously bad thing and would slice you into tiny bits. having seen raiders of the lost ark, i avoided the entire back half of the helicopters even when they were motionless outside the hangar.