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Parachute option

Parachutes on commercial flights
  (+3, -5)
(+3, -5)
  [vote for,

Parachutes on commercial flights- bring your own or have them provide it. This would give me peace of mind.
johnchaughey, Nov 22 2001

The GARD-150 Aeroplane parachute http://www.airplane...utes.com/BRS14.HTML
Not quite the same idea, yet the GARD-150 is both more and less halfbaked than this idea [hippo, Nov 22 2001, last modified Oct 21 2004]

Cirrus CAPS http://www.aerospac....com/projects/sr20/
Entire aircraft is protected by 'chute. These are flying. Author Jim Fallows owns one. [bristolz, Nov 22 2001]

'Nother Cirrus CAPS piece. Photos. http://www.airplane...utes.com/BRS24.HTML
[bristolz, Nov 22 2001]

(?) Airplane Parachutes FAQ http://www.airplane...hutes.com/BRS29.htm
[hippo, Nov 22 2001, last modified Oct 21 2004]

Cirrus CAPS http://www.cirrusde...m/images/caps-a.jpg
Entire aircraft is protected by 'chute. These are flying. Author Jim Fallows owns one. [bristolz, Oct 04 2004]

'Nother Cirrus CAPS piece. Photos. http://www.airplane....HTML#SR20 Pictures
[bristolz, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 21 2004]

Para-cushion http://parachuteshop.com/strongrv4rv8.htm
[Klaatu, Oct 04 2004]

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       It shouldn't give you peace of mind. You really think you'll all have time to strap on your parachute, get to the exit, and jump, especially if the plane is tumbling out of control? Because of the significant dangers in parachuting, pilots wouldn't order evacuations except in a very serious situation, and by then it would probably be too late. Ejection seats might be safer, but even then you'd have to stop 500 flying chairs crashing into each other, to say nothing of the additional expense, machinery and weight.
pottedstu, Nov 22 2001

       Most air disasters happen shortly after take off or on landing approach at altitudes that make parachutes useless, but if you must have them then how about converting the whole seating area into one big ejector seat?
"Fasten your seat belts ladies & gentlemen. We are about to eject."
Pilot presses button, clamps undock and the whole seating area falls out through the bottom of the plane (rocket assisted, of course, to ensure that it gets clear of the main body). After a few seconds the 'chutes deploy and the whole platform floats serenely to the ground.

Afterthought: The platform would also have to be seaworthy to prevent mass drowning. Also, all the catering facilities should be retained on the ejector platform. Oh hell, why not just equip every aircraft with a gigantic parachute so that you can just turn the bloody engines off if you get into trouble and the whole lot floats to the ground.
DrBob, Nov 22 2001

       [DrBob] see link.
hippo, Nov 22 2001

DrBob, Nov 22 2001

       DrBob, wouldn't you want to get blown through the ceiling, rather than falling through the bottom, if the very next thing you do is deploy a parachute?
jutta, Nov 22 2001

       Upward would be better but would require more weight and complexity for the rockets, not to mention coordinating what would have to be more than one to keep the whole mess from flipping over. Downward would work, if the remaining body of the plane would continue on even a little bit after.
StarChaser, Nov 22 2001

       [Rods] You wouldn't want to fit one to a model aircraft - they cost about $14,000 and are definitely single-use items. The manufacturer's FAQ say that 134 lives have been saved by use of their aeroplane parachutes.
hippo, Nov 23 2001

       jutta, yes but I did mention some rocket assistance in order to get clear of the plane. I was thinking in terms of high(er) altitude problems so, once you're clear, it makes little difference whether you go up or down (although you'd probably be going round & round if the truth be told). I went for downwards because I thought that it would be mechanically simpler to just jettison the passenger compartment than to blast away whole sections of the fuselage before firing the passengers upwards.
DrBob, Nov 23 2001

       How about having parachutes built into airplane seatbacks, like the floatation device seat cushions. The seat belts could better secure passengers to their parachutes for when needed so they would be ready at all times while buckled up.   

       Give each passenger a chance to survive in case they find themselves outside the plane, but still in their seats.
XSarenkaX, Mar 26 2004

       I was going to post this but I found it here.   

       Isn't it terrible how every time there is a crash there are no survivors? And when you get on a plane they give out those little cards that tell you to take off your shoes and get into a special position for the crash. Well, evidentally it doesn't help. So instead of telling everyone to do that, just open the doors and let them try their luck with a parachute. I know you need training and practice and all, but I think at least some would survive. Definitely a +.
ProblemSolver, Sep 02 2004

       I've been up in a glider on a couple of demonstration flights and each time they gave me a parachute although we didn't go very high. I got to wondering if it would actually do much from such a low altitude? I also wondered if he was pulling my leg and it was actually a cushion. Does anyone glide?
stilgar, Sep 03 2004

       I have no doubt in my mind that you can bring a parachute on a commercial flight. What exactly would be keeping you from doing it?
destructionism, Sep 03 2004

       It might be too big to take as carry on. Also, I'd imagine everyone else would be quite pissed off if you opened the door before landing.
stilgar, Sep 04 2004

       [stilgar] Yes, many glider/powered pilots use a "Para-cushion" in flight. Here is the <link>
Klaatu, Sep 04 2004

       Nice. Prior to getting in I'd assumed that if it broke I'd have had it, seemed fair enough. I didn't actually think a parachute would work from such a low altitude but thinking back we were higher than I initially thought. Reading your link made me remember some stuff about military nutters doing high altitude low opening jumps so I shouldn't have been so surprised. (goes off to read about said military nutters).
stilgar, Sep 05 2004

       ease of mind is good. So I like it. Then I think of bad things done by bad people. So, I don't know. Why not just become a drug mule? If the plane is going down, you could eat the drugstore and probably (depending on what you are transporting) feel not so tense about it.
Around TUIT, Sep 05 2004


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