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Cessna 182 violates Washington airspace: F16 escort

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Morning,An interesting news item this morning:Plane prompts White House evacuationhttp://www.cnn.com/2002/US/06/19/white.hou...tion/index.htmlA Cessna 182 flying at 10,500 was "escorted" down by two scrambled F16's. Ouch! You know that (former?!) pilot had great need of a washroom upon landing! :-eekDoesn't look there was foul play in the least... Simply a mistake (um, a LARGE mistake). Evidently no aircraft are allowed below FL180 over Washington.Just thought it was interesting,http://members.rogers.com/eelvish/elrondlogo.gifhttp://members.rogers.com/eelvish/flyurl.gif

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Still another example of why FS is so much better than the Real World. At least we can sightsee D.C. from the air without getting shot down!

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That all seems so excessive for a 182, especially the way CNN covered the story. Personally, I feel bad for the pilot, it was most likely an honest mistake, but somehow this will all probably get twisted around to portray him/her as a common criminal.Scott

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That all seems so excessive for a 182, especially the way CNN covered the story. Personally, I feel bad for the pilot, it was most likely an honest mistake, but somehow this will all probably get twisted around to portray him/her as a common criminal.NOT! It's big news when it happens, but we will here no more very shortly. The guy screwed up and screwed up in the worst place imaginable. ;-)) That's it.Lance

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>NOT! It's big news when it happens, but we will here no >more very shortly. The guy screwed up and screwed up in the >worst place imaginable. ;-)) That's it. I admit that its a big mistake, and he's probably in a lot of trouble (understatement of the year), but the only reason it's a huge deal is because news broadcasters like CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC make it that. Personally, I'm going to wait for the whole story before I make any more assumptions, but at this point im skeptical about a few parts of that story.Scott

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Somebody crashed a light aircraft into the White House during the Clinton administration if I remember correctly.

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Hi Scott,Thats an interesting comment... What is it about the story that you object to? I personally didn't see anything in it that jumped out as exceding the limits of factual reporting, but maybe I missed some finer point? It seemed impartial by me because they pointed out the incident was a probable mistake. They reported the pilot's contact with Flight Services for a weather update and his non-deviation from his flight path.Beyond that issue though, wouldn't you love to hear that initial contact with NORAD and the pilot's reaction? http://members.rogers.com/eelvish/elrondlogo.gifhttp://members.rogers.com/eelvish/flyurl.gif

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Hi Elrond,Well, besides not being a big fan of CNN (I'm a Fox News person myself), I find nothing really wrong with the story, but more with the news in general. I've been quite annoyed by the way news covers stories since 9/11, but this was in a way, the straw that broke the camels back. It is presented in a very neutral manner, but my objection is really to the fact that one of the first points they jumped to was wether or not it was meant to be a terrorist attack. And, my gripes aren't really with the story, as much as the overreaction. I fail to see how a C182 would prove to be such a threat to the White House that it warrented evacuation, unless the pilot loaded his plane with quite a bit of C4 or some form of nuclear weapon, which, would be hard not to spot at one point.My discontent is mostly with people and the news in general as I said above, though. Ever since 9/11, if there is so much as an explosion, one of the first things that the news ever does is says something along the lines of 'At this time its assumed its NOT a terrorist attack.' One good example of that is an explosion in a jewlry workshop in Chicago not too long ago. It was covered for about two hours, the whole time the news dedicated themselves to uncovering if a terrorist was at work, or if it was merely an accident. Furthermore, I find it plain moronic that the country is probably spending millions of dollars to find out that this guy probably wasn't aware of the rule, and in the course causing tons of emotional distress.Also, I heard that this rule has been violated something like 93 times since it was enstated, which also makes me wonder, if that's true, why this person was singled out.Just my two cents, though.Scott

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Yep ... a Cessna crashed on the White House lawn.Now, people may ask what's wrong with a little Cessna flying over the National Mall, but it wouldn't be all that hard for a Cessna to fly right into the Oval Office.jkvato1.jpg

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Let's not forget that during WWII kamikaze aircraft no bigger than a Cessna packed with explosives were capable of sinking warships. A Cessna piloted by a suicide bomber could certainly carry at least as much explosives as the Oklahoma bomb and look what that did to a six story building. It's not a light matter.Mike Stone

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Not a light matter, but remember, nothing was found out of the ordinary. It was just a slip up.

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I disagree, fighter aircraft in WW2 were quite a bit bigger than cessnas. They weighed a lot more and carried a lot more fuel. They also had much more payload capability. A cessna can only carry maybe anywhere from 500lbs to maybe 750lbs and that is including the passengers. The reason the Kamikaze aircraft did so much damage was mostly from the bomb they carried on their belly. A cessna could never fly with such a load. A cessna 152 only weighs 1100lbs total!! less than most cars! This aircraft was a 182 but still not very heavy. I would think to be a real threat to the White House the aircraft would have to be like a private jet or something like King Air. D. Griner

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I live about an hour east of Richmond, where the plane was escorted. I don't know if this was on the national networks, but on the local news at noon today, they had video of the plane departing RIC on its way back home. They said after the investigation was complete, the FBI determined it was a complete accident, and no charges or reprocussions would come of it. Good to hear, for our sake as pilots.

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I dont know about you, but I think I would request flight following anyways while flying in such an area. Isn't a transponder pretty much standard on a 182 these days?

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What I want to know is how a f-16 can escort a cessna?:)

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As an update, it seems the F16's didn't intercept the Cessna until 15-20 minutes beyond its "one to two mile" pass over the White House:Plane intercept near White House not timelyhttp://www.cnn.com/2002/US/06/20/plane.intercept/index.htmlAgain, it was an accident by the pilot, but this shows how lax the security around Washington still is post 911. If they're not going to have tight security - why have any at all? Doesn't make sense to me.Evidently there have been "about a dozen violations of restricted air space around the White House since September 11", but this one was different because the pilot wasn't monitoring and didn't respond to emergency freq. contact. Not only did he transgress restricted airspace - but prohibited as well. Ouch. FAA, here I come.http://members.rogers.com/eelvish/elrondlogo.gifhttp://members.rogers.com/eelvish/flyurl.gif

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True. Also, much of the resulting damage to the warships was caused by their own fuel and munitions which were set on fire by the Kamikaze aircraft.

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Hi.>>They said after the investigation was complete, the FBI determined it was a complete accident, and no charges or reprocussions would come of it. Good to hear, for our sake as pilots. << FBI may not do anything, but you will not get away with it as far as FAA is concerned. You cannot get away with these types of mistakes. If you do not know where you are, in the Airspace, you belong on the ground, period. He will be lucky if he gets away with remedial training and a 2 year blemish on his record and rightly so. TV

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Yes, I am also curious about the technique used to escort a C182. Can anyone definitively tell me what the stall speed of an F16 is?

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>I disagree, fighter aircraft in WW2 were quite a bit bigger >than cessnas. They weighed a lot more and carried a lot more >fuel. They also had much more payload capability. A cessna >can only carry maybe anywhere from 500lbs to maybe 750lbs >and that is including the passengers. The reason the >Kamikaze aircraft did so much damage was mostly from the >bomb they carried on their belly. A cessna could never fly >with such a load. A cessna 152 only weighs 1100lbs total!! >less than most cars! This aircraft was a 182 but still not >very heavy. >D. Griner With my accurate flight models I can find pretty well just how an AC flies overloaded. I set my C172 1000 lbs overweight (to 3500 lb gross) and it still had better climb than at 10,000 ft with the normal load. With low fuel and only a suicide pilot one could easily carry 1,500 lb of ammonium nitrate. Nearly one ton. With a low pitch prop one could optimise thrust to do even better. A quick calculation suggests about 4900 lbs would be the limit of level flight with an optimum prop and 150 HP engine. That leaves 3300 lb payload past 10 gal of fuel and a pilot. Pick a day below 59 F and higher Barometer and one could even climb. I knew a guy from Thailand that once was in a group thinking of using an RC AC to get the leader. Ron

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