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Airports that require special qualifications

At 845m the runway, there is no way a jet can land here

Pah! REAL pilots land their jets on the 600m grass strip!

The view down to 34 in your picture looks impressive. I think the only way to do it in my plane would be a quick spin on short final… or the dreaded (wait, hold your breath, sit down) sideslip.

LFMD, France

Sebastian_G wrote:

My understanding is that the accidents did actually happen on departure so they now seem to allow people to fly in on their own, meet with a local instructor, do a local flight and its done.

Looks like they changed that, it used to be that you had to have a FI on board for the first landing. And it looks like if you have not been to Samedan for 24 months even after you’ve passed the qualification, you need not only to redo the briefing but also the qualification flight.

And no, the accidents which triggered the whole qualification things were all on arrival and with biz jets. That our small GA was also implicated for site qualification is just the usual CYA.

LSZH, Switzerland

Mooney_Driver wrote:

And no, the accidents which triggered the whole qualification things were all on arrival and with biz jets. That our small GA was also implicated for site qualification is just the usual CYA.

My understanding alway was the rules for Cat A airplanes at LSZS have been a direct answer to this sad case:
https://www.sust.admin.ch/inhalte/AV-berichte/2000_d.pdf

www.ing-golze.de
EDAZ

Sebastian_G wrote:

My understanding alway was the rules for Cat A airplanes at LSZS have been a direct answer to this sad case:
https://www.sust.admin.ch/inhalte/AV-berichte/2000_d.pdf

Well, I can ask the guy up there next time I see him. I recall that they were taken to the cleaners by the FOCA after in a short while 2 biz jets crashed and introduced the program thereafter, including Cat A. But quite possibly you may be right tht this older accident was the reason they did that.

I go there when I have a compelling reason to do so. My landing and parking fee is way too expensive up there just for fun. And only in summer, so I don’t have to pay for the snow fee on top. Samedan is easily the most expensive airfield in Switzerland. Ah well, if my new prop ever comes, maybe I can get rid of the noise fee at least. Would be 80 CHF off the bill.

LSZH, Switzerland

Mooney_Driver wrote:

. I recall that they were taken to the cleaners by the FOCA after in a short while 2 biz jets crashed and introduced the program thereafte

Yes I remember those :-(
https://www.sust.admin.ch/inhalte/AV-berichte/2074_e.pdf
https://www.sust.admin.ch/inhalte/AV-berichte/2140_e.pdf

The Premier was apparently too much and we must give them some credit as the record has actually improved.

www.ing-golze.de
EDAZ

Sebastian_G wrote:

The Premier was apparently too much and we must give them some credit as the record has actually improved.

Yep. Nevertheless, there was no real immediate reason to include small props in this. It was just done to cover eventualities.

there is nothing wrong with the online briefing in terms of content, also the one for Zurich is excellent in the sense it really gives valuable information. Yet, for most PPL pilots, flying to airports like this has to be in their capability list after training, so demanding check flights with local FI’s is imho slightly over the top, particularly the requirement to redo it after 2 years.

LSZH, Switzerland

Mooney_Driver wrote:

Yet, for most PPL pilots, flying to airports like this has to be in their capability list after training

Yes and no. For Swiss PPL’s maybe. “Flatland” PPL’s will very likely have had no experience at all with mountains or high altitude airports during their training. But I agree that a required online briefing should be enough even for LSZS.

ESKC (Uppsala/Sundbro), Sweden

I think the main issue is lack of engine management training.

In the PPL, one is rarely taught what the red lever does. They are renting out say a PA28 for £250/hr wet, so they (the school nor the renter) don’t care about fuel savings.

But you can’t get a plane to 8k-10k unless you lean a bit.

And to do it right you need EGT measurement, which most don’t have.

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Peter wrote:

In the PPL, one is rarely taught what the red lever does. They are renting out say a PA28 for £250/hr wet, so they (the school nor the renter) don’t care about fuel savings.

Well, again it’s difficult to say what happens in all different flight schools in all different countries in Europe. Certainly, my club teaches all PPLs how to lean.

And to do it right you need EGT measurement, which most don’t have.

I don’t know what “most” have, but you certainly can lean without an EGT, although it will be less precise. Many POHs and engine manuals describe the procedure. Particularly in the case of high density altitude departures, you’re not interested in leaning relative to peak EGT but to maximum rpm.

ESKC (Uppsala/Sundbro), Sweden

Airborne_Again wrote:

“Flatland” PPL’s will very likely have had no experience at all with mountains or high altitude airports during their training.

Peter wrote:

But you can’t get a plane to 8k-10k unless you lean a bit.

It’s funny how different PPL training in different places is even in the day and age of EASA, where PPL is PPL no matter where it’s trained from a FCL point of view.

The two statements above remind me of something far more basic than mountain flying.

Story one: In a well known forum someone from northern Europe was totally excited about getting his airplane to “high altitude” the first time. Which, I believe, was 10’000 ft somewhere over England. Well, most airplanes can do 10’000 ft but this guy, with about 250 hrs total time, said he never had actually climbed above 2500 ft ever.

Story two: A by now very good friend of mine was instrumental in creating a great flight planning solution for VFR airplanes. I loved it from the start, great mapping, great functions and more. But me, coming from the dispatching side of aviation, had a problem: That program based it’s whole perfomance section consisted on one parameter: IAS and an associated fuel flow. It took quite a bit of psychology to figure out why: In the country my friend resides nobody flies over 2500 ft so nobody ever bothered to find out about TAS and for that matter mixing. Many folks still teach no mixing below 5000 ft. Many POH’s say the same, no leaning above 75% power and no leaning below 5000 ft.

Conclusion from the above: Mountain flying is one thing considering all kinds of terrain considerations, orographic winds, turbulence and all that. But much more than that, it is a perfomance thing. And if people never even get to climb their planes over 2500 ft or so, they don’t know the first thing about it. IMHO, nobody should gain a PPL without having at least had the approach to service ceiling demonstrated but much better doing it themselves.

The contrapoint to that is people who look at Samedan or Aspen or similar and think, oh, super, long runway, no problem. If they ever have climbed their airplane at the equivalent density altitudes of 7000 ft or above, they might get an idea that this is not quite right.

Hence my wondering why there are so many PPL’s who lack this basic knowledge. You don’t need mountains to experience the change in behaviour of the airplane at high altitudes. Most airplanes fly much more economical at higher altitudes and having never done high altitude is simply no good. I also wonder why perfomance is not instructed much more in PPL’s theoretical stuff. Performance is fun, if you get to know it, yet most people don’t know anything about it.

LSZH, Switzerland
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