I've not had vertigo but have suffered disorientation taking off from a moving ship on an overcast night with no moon, so no light at all! I was obviously on instruments and they showed a 5 degree nose down attitude for the climb out. At or about 400'ft I started to let the nose come up as I felt as though the machine was diving to the sea. The instruments were telling me that the nose was coming up and washing A/S off but how could I argue with what I could feel!. I hit the autopilot and this only made matters worse due to it being set to home so it started to turn only making my symptoms worse and it was still climbing and loosing airspeed. I overrode it and just concentrated on flying the instruments telling myself not to trust the feelings in my body, it only lasted seconds but it was very very scary. I still do single pilot MPT at night but it's given me more grey hairs than I would like............anyone got a nice Day VFR job going
Joined: Aug 24, 2010 Posts: 94 Location: Teddington, SW London, UK
Posted: Wed Dec 08, 2010 10:39 pm Post subject:
When flying Helis you shouldn't ever be getting into a situation where you are not flying VFR without serious training. IFR needs constant work and maintenance and no more so than in a heli.
So whilst the exams will tell you to trust your instruments in low viz you should never be flying in such conditions in the first place and a decent understanding of MET and getting appropriate forecasts will keep you out of this. If you do get into trouble HOPEFULLY the 5 hours of instrument work in the PPL may save your life but anyone thinking that is sufficient to get them out of trouble and taking risks as a result is asking for a lot of trouble.
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