|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||1201 To 1800|
|Locale Reference||airport : dlg|
|Altitude||agl bound lower : 0|
agl bound upper : 420
|Operator||common carrier : air carrier|
|Make Model Name||Small Transport, Low Wing, 2 Recip Eng|
|Flight Phase||descent : approach|
|Affiliation||company : air carrier|
|Function||flight crew : single pilot|
|Qualification||pilot : instrument|
pilot : commercial
pilot : cfi
pilot : atp
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 200|
flight time total : 8000
flight time type : 900
|Function||other personnel other|
|Anomaly||inflight encounter : weather|
non adherence : far
|Independent Detector||other flight crewa|
|Resolutory Action||none taken : anomaly accepted|
|Primary Problem||Flight Crew Human Performance|
|Air Traffic Incident||Pilot Deviation|
The aircraft was returning to dillingham IFR following delivering passenger to togiak (60 southwest) on a VFR part 135 flight. The return flight was empty other than a non revenue passenger, and employee of the company, who is also a private pilot. Therefore the flight was being conducted under part 91 flight rules. Just prior to starting the approach the WX was reported by FSS and broadcast on FSS and ATIS frequencys as having reduced to 200' ceiling and 1/2 mi visibility. Due to what is generally perceived as unreliable WX reports and reporting personnel unresponsive to PIREPS, a decision was made to conduct the approach to actually see if flight conditions for a safe landing existed. The absence of RVR readings and the highly variable nature of the WX conditions existing at the time were also factors in the decision to make the approach. At the missed approach point, at 420' and over the end of the runway (1.8 DME, dlg 005 degree right), the entire length of the runway was in sight, signifying that at least 1 mi visibility existed. The landing was somewhat long, utilizing mostly the last 1/2 of the runway due to a tailwind component (estimated 10 KTS), the height above the approach end of the runway (420') and the slow reactions of the flaps to 40 degrees (full) from 10 degree approach setting. The remaining 2500' for T/D and rollout was more than adequate, as we frequently use gravel runways of approximately that distance or somewhat less. The slow reaction of the flaps is due to a ad which calls for a 40:1 reduction gear box for the flaps, instead of 20:1 as originally manufactured. I believe that in this case, the reason that the WX was reported lower than the actual landing and runway conditions is due to the FSS station bldg being located well to the west of the runway on the west ramp. A fog bank was covering most of the west and southwest ramp areas of the airport. The runway was in good condition with landing minimums existing and a safe landing made. The highly variable nature of the WX was indicated by the fact that in a few minutes normal airport operations resumed, starting with IFR then SVFR flts. The practice of reporting and forecasting WX different or biased toward worse than actual, to cover the govt forecasters and reporting personnel against liability, causes a loss of credibility and a reduction in safety due to pilots disregarding WX information, even in cases where it might be accurate.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: ACR SMT ON RETURN FRY FLT TO HOME BASE MADE APCH IN WX REPORTED BELOW ARPT WX MINIMUMS FOR LNDG.
Narrative: THE ACFT WAS RETURNING TO DILLINGHAM IFR FOLLOWING DELIVERING PAX TO TOGIAK (60 SW) ON A VFR PART 135 FLT. THE RETURN FLT WAS EMPTY OTHER THAN A NON REVENUE PAX, AND EMPLOYEE OF THE COMPANY, WHO IS ALSO A PVT PLT. THEREFORE THE FLT WAS BEING CONDUCTED UNDER PART 91 FLT RULES. JUST PRIOR TO STARTING THE APCH THE WX WAS RPTED BY FSS AND BROADCAST ON FSS AND ATIS FREQS AS HAVING REDUCED TO 200' CEILING AND 1/2 MI VIS. DUE TO WHAT IS GENERALLY PERCEIVED AS UNRELIABLE WX RPTS AND RPTING PERSONNEL UNRESPONSIVE TO PIREPS, A DECISION WAS MADE TO CONDUCT THE APCH TO ACTUALLY SEE IF FLT CONDITIONS FOR A SAFE LNDG EXISTED. THE ABSENCE OF RVR READINGS AND THE HIGHLY VARIABLE NATURE OF THE WX CONDITIONS EXISTING AT THE TIME WERE ALSO FACTORS IN THE DECISION TO MAKE THE APCH. AT THE MISSED APCH POINT, AT 420' AND OVER THE END OF THE RWY (1.8 DME, DLG 005 DEG R), THE ENTIRE LENGTH OF THE RWY WAS IN SIGHT, SIGNIFYING THAT AT LEAST 1 MI VIS EXISTED. THE LNDG WAS SOMEWHAT LONG, UTILIZING MOSTLY THE LAST 1/2 OF THE RWY DUE TO A TAILWIND COMPONENT (ESTIMATED 10 KTS), THE HEIGHT ABOVE THE APCH END OF THE RWY (420') AND THE SLOW REACTIONS OF THE FLAPS TO 40 DEGS (FULL) FROM 10 DEG APCH SETTING. THE REMAINING 2500' FOR T/D AND ROLLOUT WAS MORE THAN ADEQUATE, AS WE FREQUENTLY USE GRAVEL RWYS OF APPROX THAT DISTANCE OR SOMEWHAT LESS. THE SLOW REACTION OF THE FLAPS IS DUE TO A AD WHICH CALLS FOR A 40:1 REDUCTION GEAR BOX FOR THE FLAPS, INSTEAD OF 20:1 AS ORIGINALLY MANUFACTURED. I BELIEVE THAT IN THIS CASE, THE REASON THAT THE WX WAS RPTED LOWER THAN THE ACTUAL LNDG AND RWY CONDITIONS IS DUE TO THE FSS STATION BLDG BEING LOCATED WELL TO THE W OF THE RWY ON THE W RAMP. A FOG BANK WAS COVERING MOST OF THE W AND SW RAMP AREAS OF THE ARPT. THE RWY WAS IN GOOD CONDITION WITH LNDG MINIMUMS EXISTING AND A SAFE LNDG MADE. THE HIGHLY VARIABLE NATURE OF THE WX WAS INDICATED BY THE FACT THAT IN A FEW MINUTES NORMAL ARPT OPS RESUMED, STARTING WITH IFR THEN SVFR FLTS. THE PRACTICE OF RPTING AND FORECASTING WX DIFFERENT OR BIASED TOWARD WORSE THAN ACTUAL, TO COVER THE GOVT FORECASTERS AND RPTING PERSONNEL AGAINST LIABILITY, CAUSES A LOSS OF CREDIBILITY AND A REDUCTION IN SAFETY DUE TO PLTS DISREGARDING WX INFO, EVEN IN CASES WHERE IT MIGHT BE ACCURATE.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of August 2007 and automatically converted to unabbreviated mixed upper/lowercase text. This report is for informational purposes with no guarantee of accuracy. See NASA's ASRS site for official report.