T-34C OUT-OF-CONTROL FLIGHT
105. PILOT FACTORS IN OUT-OF-CONTROL FLIGHT
Now that OCF aerodynamics and some design problems have been discussed, there are several
factors, affecting a pilot's performance when the aircraft departs controlled flight, which should
Time Distortion. Studies show the average pilot, under the stress of OCF, perceives time to be
passing about five times faster than it really is. This misconception leads to the pilot's reluctance
to maintain proper recovery control inputs long enough to be effective. Instead, the pilot feels
the control inputs have been held long enough, recovery should have taken place; therefore, it
must be necessary to "try something else" and recovery is thereby delayed or even prevented.
The only sure way to avoid problems brought about by time distortion is to analyze the problem
accurately, know the aircraft's recovery procedures, maintain recovery inputs, and be patient.
The altimeter will indicate when it is time to stop attempting recovery and jettison from the
"G" Force Distortion. "G" force distortion, or perceived "seat of the pants" cues can cause you
to analyze a situation incorrectly and apply improper recovery inputs. Disregard perceived "G"
forces! Look at the instruments! Believe them!
Control Inputs. The pilot's natural tendency usually will be contrary to necessary and proper
control application, primarily in the use of ailerons. For example, upon experiencing a wing
drop or roll during departure, the pilot's instinct is to counter with ailerons, which induces
adverse yaw, aggravates the departure and can lead to a spin. All control positioning must be
done deliberately to ensure they are properly placed and the pilot should visually check all the
controls for correct position.
Seat Restraint. OCF may cause the pilot to be thrown out of reach of the controls. Keeping lap
belts as tight as possible will help prevent this problem. However, under heavy negative "G"
loads, reaching the controls will take a definite effort even if the lap belts are tight.
Every pilot must be prepared to handle uncontrolled flight by:
Knowing the aircraft. Study the NATOPS Flight Manual.
Knowing the procedures. OCF Recovery Procedures must become second nature.
Neutralizing the controls. Immediately upon losing control, position controls to neutral until
recovery or a Steady-State Spin has been positively confirmed.
Power to Idle. Failure to do this can delay the recovery, which neutral controls should bring
Being patient. Hasty control applications can lead to trouble. Also, be patient with the control
inputs you have applied (i.e., neutral) when an aircraft experiences OCF.
INTRODUCTIONS AND SPINS 1-13