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Tue Apr 14, 2020, 12:37 PM

Man accidentally ejects himself from fighter jet during surprise flight


https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/apr/14/man-accidentally-ejects-himself-from-fighter-jet-during-surprise-flight

Man accidentally ejects himself from fighter jet during surprise flight
Sixty-four-year-old lands in field after grabbing ejection handle to steady himself, French air investigators find

Guardian staff
Mon 13 Apr 2020 21.55 EDT Last modified on Tue 14 Apr 2020 09.23 EDT

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French Rafale fighter jet

A surprise outing in a fighter jet unnerved one defence company executive so much he accidentally ejected himself while flying at over 500km/h (320mph), an investigation into the debacle in France has found.

The 64-year-old civilian got the most unwelcome ride of his life after the force of the take-off made him “float” off his seat, causing him to stand up and involuntarily grab the ejection handle to steady himself.

Air accident investigators found a series of errors in the lead-up to the incident, including ignored medical warnings that the passenger should not undergo to the 3.7g of force generated by the take-off, and loose seat straps that allowed him to float up. He also lost his helmet while being ejected.

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The man had never expressed any desire to fly in a fighter jet and had no previous military aviation experience, investigators said. His heart was racing at between 120 and 145 beats per minute beforehand. The flight had been a gift from colleagues and the man felt he couldn’t refuse

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There’s an awesome flight path diagram showing “avant éjection” and “apres éjection” at the link.

15 replies, 1099 views

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Arrow 15 replies Author Time Post
Reply Man accidentally ejects himself from fighter jet during surprise flight (Original post)
CottonBear Apr 2020 OP
Rorey Apr 2020 #1
CottonBear Apr 2020 #2
Wawannabe Apr 2020 #9
cloudbase Apr 2020 #3
CottonBear Apr 2020 #4
5X Apr 2020 #5
cloudbase Apr 2020 #11
ret5hd Apr 2020 #6
Louis1895 Apr 2020 #7
3Hotdogs Apr 2020 #8
cloudbase Apr 2020 #12
Kaleva Apr 2020 #14
Bev54 Apr 2020 #10
Kaleva Apr 2020 #13
CottonBear Apr 2020 #15

Response to CottonBear (Original post)

Tue Apr 14, 2020, 12:43 PM

1. I'm glad it didn't kill him

This reminds me of when my son informed me that we were going to go skydiving together. He said I couldn't refuse if he paid for it.

After I explained to him that it would mean my death, he backed off. I see no reason to ever jump out of a perfectly good airplane.

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Response to Rorey (Reply #1)

Tue Apr 14, 2020, 12:46 PM

2. I'm in complete agreement. No way am I ever skydiving either.

I saw the late Steve Erwin pass out while in the passenger seat of a US Air Force jet. He went on a flight while filming his show in the USA. He included the video of him passing out in the episode.

BTW, the ejected man, sans helmet, landed safely in a field

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Response to Rorey (Reply #1)

Tue Apr 14, 2020, 01:43 PM

9. I did it

Very exhilarating! But once is enough...
And my kin all said the same about the perfectly good airplane.

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Response to CottonBear (Original post)

Tue Apr 14, 2020, 12:47 PM

3. Perhaps it's just me,

but that's the kind of thing I would cover in the preflight briefing.

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Response to cloudbase (Reply #3)

Tue Apr 14, 2020, 12:50 PM

4. One would think so.

It all happened because his seatbelt/harness was not properly tightened and adjusted.

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Response to cloudbase (Reply #3)

Tue Apr 14, 2020, 12:52 PM

5. I'd blame the pilot

or whoever was supposed to strap him in.

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Response to 5X (Reply #5)

Tue Apr 14, 2020, 02:54 PM

11. It is the responsibility of the pilot in command.

When I take somebody up flying with me, I have to give them what is essentially the same briefing you get when you're on an airliner. This is how to fasten the belt, etc. It's in the FARs (the federal regulations)
I give a briefing on how to bail out and the use of the parachute as well. (I'll say "bail out" three times. The third one might be a little faint, because I'll be on my way out.)
Whatever you do, don't touch "this." Or "that."
Do you understand what I've just said? We can go over it again if you have questions.
I will make sure you're properly belted in. (It's on the pre-takeoff checklist.)

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Response to CottonBear (Original post)

Tue Apr 14, 2020, 01:07 PM

6. Dammit Jerry...

You're always messing up!

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Response to CottonBear (Original post)

Tue Apr 14, 2020, 01:19 PM

7. It could have been worse.

The pilot also should have been ejected. His seat malfunctioned so he was able to stay in the plane and land it! If he had been ejected, too, who knows where the jet would have crashed?

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Response to Louis1895 (Reply #7)

Tue Apr 14, 2020, 01:42 PM

8. I bet he would have got yelled at.

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Response to Louis1895 (Reply #7)

Tue Apr 14, 2020, 02:55 PM

12. That would ruin your afternoon. n/t

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Response to Louis1895 (Reply #7)

Tue Apr 14, 2020, 04:44 PM

14. That thought gave comfort to the man as he was being ejected. "It could be worse!"

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Response to CottonBear (Original post)

Tue Apr 14, 2020, 01:50 PM

10. Sounds like an SNL skit, couldn't stop laughing

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Response to CottonBear (Original post)

Tue Apr 14, 2020, 04:40 PM

13. Some of us are cooped up sheltering at home, others get shot out of a jet fighter plane.

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Response to Kaleva (Reply #13)

Tue Apr 14, 2020, 09:01 PM

15. At least, the poor guy survived, mostly unscathed.

He’s probably very glad to be quarantined somewhere in France now.

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