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A jet crashes in the DV area, several onlookers injured

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Wingman
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Re: A jet crashes in the DV area, several onlookers injured

Post by Wingman » Thu Aug 01, 2019 9:41 pm

What makes this more dangerous is that they are pointed straight at that parking lot and viewpoint during part of that turn. That canyon is extremely dangerous to the pilots because of the turning course down it. If you mistime your turns at all you are dead -- there's no way out if you blow it. If you blow it at the wrong time you barbecue a bunch of tourists. This pilot showed exactly what I'm talking about. If he or she had hit 75 feet higher those 7 tourists would be crispy critters. This is off season -- how many tourists are in that area in March? Like I said -- an accident waiting to happen. Remember that these are not exactly heroes flying these things -- they are 25 year old kids with a 50 million dollar toy and all the kerosene they can burn.

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jacknv7
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Re: A jet crashes in the DV area, several onlookers injured

Post by jacknv7 » Thu Aug 01, 2019 11:38 pm

It's interesting to read Title VIII - Military Lands and Overflights of the California Desert Protection Act of 1994, starting on page 31 on the the link below...

https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/BIL ... s21enr.pdf

According to the Act, the military is the deciding factor and perhaps it was not the best idea to place the enhanced view point at that location.

It will be interesting to see what the Navy determines.

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Re: A jet crashes in the DV area, several onlookers injured

Post by Wingman » Fri Aug 02, 2019 12:01 am

That highway and rest area have been there a long time. Plus it's a National Park! I've driven that road dozens of times over the last 40 years. I didn't start seeing significant use by the Navy til 4 or 5 years ago. We have watched with concern in recent seasons as whole new parking areas and use paths have sprung up and been carved out illegally, as word got out that suddenly you could hang out for a day or two and have a good chance of seeing some action. This really is pretty recent. It's become a bucket list thing for a lot of these pilot kids -- most of them have GoPros mounted.

I've known a bunch of fighter pilots in my time, and flown with several of them. They tend to be real pros (at least the survivors do), but they are well out in the extreme athlete realm in being comfortable taking risks. I think it's nuts to allow them to point a 25,000 pound machine with a ton of fuel aboard at 400 mph straight at a bunch of tourists. They don't allow performers at air shows to fly directly toward the audience for very good and obvious reasons -- the same should be true in a National Park.

kwalsh
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Re: A jet crashes in the DV area, several onlookers injured

Post by kwalsh » Fri Aug 02, 2019 6:47 am

Wingman wrote:
Fri Aug 02, 2019 12:01 am
That highway and rest area have been there a long time. Plus it's a National Park! I've driven that road dozens of times over the last 40 years. I didn't start seeing significant use by the Navy til 4 or 5 years ago. We have watched with concern in recent seasons as whole new parking areas and use paths have sprung up and been carved out illegally, as word got out that suddenly you could hang out for a day or two and have a good chance of seeing some action. This really is pretty recent. It's become a bucket list thing for a lot of these pilot kids -- most of them have GoPros mounted.

I've known a bunch of fighter pilots in my time, and flown with several of them. They tend to be real pros (at least the survivors do), but they are well out in the extreme athlete realm in being comfortable taking risks. I think it's nuts to allow them to point a 25,000 pound machine with a ton of fuel aboard at 400 mph straight at a bunch of tourists. They don't allow performers at air shows to fly directly toward the audience for very good and obvious reasons -- the same should be true in a National Park.
I've been visiting for decades. The aircraft have always been flying down that canyon. What's changed in the past five or so years is that social media has made everyone aware that it happens and has attracted people to the site specifically to watch the airplanes. The people are new - not the planes.

Given that people are now there all the time that does change the risk equation as far as collateral damage from an accident. Maybe they will change things. As you state the amount of visitor impact at the site has increased dramatically thanks to social media. In general Instagram has been doing a great job of destroying our natural beauty. This is just another example though in this case it is the planes attracting the people rather than the view itself. So there really is the option of removing the planes...

Of course then it is only a matter of time until people realize an even more dramatic spot to watch planes is South Pass. And if you close Jedi then you'll probably end up with more air traffic through South Pass making it an even more appealing spot to plane watch. And so then the aviation buffs will collect at South Pass and create worse impact in a more fragile remote site - again thanks to Instagram, YouTube and the like.

So personally I'd prefer they leave Rainbow Canyon open as a low level route so it can be the sacrificial lamb to protect the rest of the park.

Lastly as already pointed out in this thread the law creating the national park specifically allowed unrestricted use of the airspace, including low level overflights. That was key to creating the park in the first place. So it is silly to claim "well it is a National Park, so why are they flying there?" The choices were - National Park with low level flights or no National Park at all. I'll take the former thanks!

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Re: A jet crashes in the DV area, several onlookers injured

Post by Wingman » Fri Aug 02, 2019 11:51 am

I'm tired of "sacrifice places". We have for all intents and purposes lost the Racetrack as a special place of silence and solitude. Ditto for Badwater and significant amounts of the salt flats. Butte Valley is a freeway much of the year. There's nothing much original about Mesquite Dunes any more. How many "sacrifice spots" can the Park give up to social media before it all just becomes a city Park? I'm inclined to fight back on some of this at least.
Something as loony as "Star Wars Canyon is one major place to worry about, in my mind. That place is horrifying for anybody who has any idea of what the dynamics of high performance aircraft are and what the consequences of a F%#k-up could be. If you make accidents likely they're likely to happen...

I'm also tired of America kissing the ample military ass. I'm a veteran, and as well have been involved with high performance aircraft all my adult life. I've met an awful lot of idiot officers -- all the way up to several ex-generals. Soldiers sailors and airmen are just regular folks doing a job like the rest of us, and the higher ranking officers are politicians and not warriors. Letting these people make decisions about the American West is idiocy.

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jacknv7
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Re: A jet crashes in the DV area, several onlookers injured

Post by jacknv7 » Fri Aug 02, 2019 1:56 pm

As of right now the closure is in effect until Aug. 8...

KEDW EDWARDS AFB

M0562/19 - SIDEWINDER JEDI TRANSITION (C-J) CLOSED. USE CAUTION, HELO OPERATIONS IVO POINT J. 02 AUG 20:16 2019 UNTIL 08 AUG 00:01 2019. CREATED: 02 AUG 20:16 2019

M0561/19 - SIDEWINDER POINT A TO POINT C CLOSED. JEDI TRANSITION (C-J) CLOSED. USE CAUTION, HELO OPERATIONS IVO POINT J. 02 AUG 19:58 2019 UNTIL 08 AUG 00:01 2019. CREATED: 02 AUG 19:58 2019

Number of NOTAMs selected: 2 End of Report

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Re: A jet crashes in the DV area, several onlookers injured

Post by Wingman » Fri Aug 02, 2019 2:15 pm

Interesting -- I wonder how it's all going to play out. I'm surprised at how little nationwide coverage the crash is getting. You'd think a bunch of people scorched and cut up by an unnecessary military screw up would get more attention.

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Re: A jet crashes in the DV area, several onlookers injured

Post by jacknv7 » Fri Aug 02, 2019 2:52 pm

The media could be calling this crash a routine training accident and have moved on to other things. Even though the pilot was killed it wasn't the kind of disasters the media likes to flock to such as these crashes...

https://www.cnn.com/2014/06/04/us/calif ... index.html

https://abcnews.go.com/US/dead-injured- ... d=64012953

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Re: A jet crashes in the DV area, several onlookers injured

Post by Wingman » Fri Aug 02, 2019 9:39 pm

Always worth remembering that these things may be flown by over motivated 25 year olds, but they are maintained largely by undermotivated 20 year olds.

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Re: A jet crashes in the DV area, several onlookers injured

Post by Sparky of SoCal » Sat Aug 03, 2019 7:08 am

Wingman wrote:
Fri Aug 02, 2019 2:15 pm
Interesting -- I wonder how it's all going to play out. I'm surprised at how little nationwide coverage the crash is getting. You'd think a bunch of people scorched and cut up by an unnecessary military screw up would get more attention.
I am leaning towards the idea that a majority of the public don't feel the same way a lone voice in the internet has. At this time that is what the evidence is indicating.

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blackturtle.us
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Re: A jet crashes in the DV area, several onlookers injured

Post by blackturtle.us » Sat Aug 03, 2019 9:22 am

Sparky of SoCal wrote:
Sat Aug 03, 2019 7:08 am
Wingman wrote:
Fri Aug 02, 2019 2:15 pm
Interesting -- I wonder how it's all going to play out. I'm surprised at how little nationwide coverage the crash is getting. You'd think a bunch of people scorched and cut up by an unnecessary military screw up would get more attention.
I am leaning towards the idea that a majority of the public don't feel the same way a lone voice in the internet has. At this time that is what the evidence is indicating.
Sure, but once the lawsuit is filed the news media will be all over it and the public will begin to take notice.

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Re: A jet crashes in the DV area, several onlookers injured

Post by jacknv7 » Sat Aug 03, 2019 9:35 am

Interesting point turtle on media taking interest in a lawsuit from this accident. I checked to see how many federal lawsuits were filed in June 2019 and it was 22,625 cases with personal injury amounting to about 20% of those cases. I am guessing they would file the lawsuit in the US Court for the Eastern District of California which is in Sacramento so it may not get much local attention...

https://trac.syr.edu/tracreports/bullet ... un19/cfil/

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Re: A jet crashes in the DV area, several onlookers injured

Post by bbb » Sat Aug 03, 2019 11:25 am

I feel badly for the pilot's family and colleagues who likely have to say goodbye to someone who was still young.

It's interesting that this viewpoint was rather recently upgraded and improved. It's truly a unique place in the national park system. Given the meager budget the Park Service has to operate, let alone defend against present and future liabilities, I'm guessing someone with authority is going to err on the side of caution with trying to "fix" the Crowley viewpoint after this event .

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Re: A jet crashes in the DV area, several onlookers injured

Post by jacknv7 » Sat Aug 03, 2019 11:45 am

Caltrans in conjunction with the park created the overlook in 2011. The original plans were drawn up in 2006 and it wasn't until the last few years that it has become the popular plane viewing site.

I would guess the possible options could include eliminating the low level segment through that particular canyon, closing or placing warning notices at the view point, or continuing military and park operations as usual.

The military flight closure through this segment is still posted closed until August 8...

Data Current as of: Sat, 03 Aug 2019 18:34:00 GMT

KEDW EDWARDS AFB

M0562/19 - SIDEWINDER JEDI TRANSITION (C-J) CLOSED. USE CAUTION, HELO OPERATIONS IVO POINT J. 02 AUG 20:16 2019 UNTIL 08 AUG 00:01 2019. CREATED: 02 AUG 20:16 2019

M0561/19 - SIDEWINDER POINT A TO POINT C CLOSED. JEDI TRANSITION (C-J) CLOSED. USE CAUTION, HELO OPERATIONS IVO POINT J. 02 AUG 19:58 2019 UNTIL 08 AUG 00:01 2019. CREATED: 02 AUG 19:58 2019

Number of NOTAMs selected: 2 End of Report

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Re: A jet crashes in the DV area, several onlookers injured

Post by kwalsh » Sat Aug 03, 2019 1:03 pm

@Wingman if you are going to fight back at things the I’d recommend fighting for the backcountry - e.g. Butte and Racetrack. It is easy to reduce visitation there - stop grading the dang roads and problem will quickly resolve itself. Completely within the control of the NPS to do this (unlike SV road which is Inyo County controlled).

Fighting about jets flying over a viewpoint 100 ft from a highway seems a waste of effort. It’s by a highway - who cares. If people want to park there and watch jets go by more power to them - they won’t be cluttering Butte, Badwater, Mesquite and all the other places if they are parked at FCP all day waiting for the tenth jet that looks the same as all the others to fly down the same canyon the same way they always do.

And you should worry a lot more about the Thunderbirds and Blue Angels. They routinely fly over populated areas performing far more dangerous maneuvers and quite routinely crash over said populated areas. Sure the air show audience is relatively projected by control of the direction in momentum of the maneuvers but the planes fall out of the sky on businesses and houses a few times a decade since the maneuvers involve high-G turns away from the airfield and pilots can black out. And yet the shows continue because the risk is still viewed as acceptably low. I’m guessing maneuvers near a remote desert point with a handful of people on top of it isn’t going to concern anyone.

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