Fact Checking Nelson's "Doors Of Death" light aircraft near death experience

The catch-all forum for general topics and debates. Minimal moderation. Rated PG to PG-13.
Philo Sofee
God
Posts: 5187
Joined: Thu Oct 29, 2020 1:18 am

Re: Fact Checking Nelson's "Doors Of Death" light aircraft near death experience

Post by Philo Sofee »

Dr Moore wrote:
Tue Mar 15, 2022 12:14 am
I saw this post achieve a brief moment of attention at www.reddit.com/r/Mormon.

https://www.reddit.com/r/Mormon/comment ... fib_maybe/

In short, the OP observes what appears to be a contemporary instance in which Nelson creates a revelation through exaggeration. Nelson claims to have read literally everything on the topic of "Israel," and only recently through interaction with not one, but two Hebrew scholars, was shown that Israel means "let God prevail." And yet, the definition in the Bible Dictionary of the approved LDS standard works for Israel is, "One who prevails with God or Let God prevail*.*"

So I just wonder, which fib came before this particular "delight"? Was it the fib about having read "every" scripture related to Israel? Or was it the fib about the two unnamed Hebrew scholars who assisted Nelson with the arduous task of looking up the definition of Israel?
Well, I mean, he can't possibly do what it takes to learn the actual Hebrew, being a lazy learner prophet... :lol:
User avatar
Tom
2nd Quorum of 70
Posts: 683
Joined: Mon Oct 26, 2020 3:41 pm

Re: Fact Checking Nelson's "Doors Of Death" light aircraft near death experience

Post by Tom »

For the archive: FAIR’s entry on President Nelson’s story:
Question: Did Russell M. Nelson exaggerate his story about being in a falling airplane?

In 1976, Russell M. Nelson was in a small commuter airplane traveling from Salt Lake City to St. George. During the flight, the plane experienced engine trouble and rapidly decreased in altitude. President Nelson described the experience:
I remember vividly an experience I had as a passenger in a small two-propeller airplane. One of its engines suddenly burst open and caught on fire. The propeller of the flaming engine was starkly stilled. As we plummeted in a steep spiral dive toward the earth, I expected to die. Some of the passengers screamed in hysterical panic. Miraculously, the precipitous dive extinguished the flames. Then, by starting up the other engine, the pilot was able to stabilize the plane and bring us down safely.[1]
According to a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) summary report the next year, this accident was one of three involving Sky West Airlines over the course of a month. As a result, the Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB) temporarily suspended Sky West’s authorization to fly to certain airports. As part of proceedings regarding the suspension, the FAA provided summary information regarding the three accidents. The FAA’s summary of the incident involving President Nelson’s plane reads:
Second incident occurred Nov. 11, 1976 involving Piper PA 31 N74985. Pilot experienced rough engine on scheduled flight between Salt Lake City and St. George. 3 passengers on board. Engine was feathered and precautionary landing made at Delta, Utah, per instructions in company manual. Investigation revealed cylinder base studs sheered. As result of occurrence Sky West changed maintenance procedures by checking torque studs at each 100 hour inspection. No damage to aircraft. No injuries to crew or passengers.[2]
Because the summary report does not mention a fire, some have wondered if this means President Nelson exaggerated his story. It is important to remember that this summary is not the investigative report of the incident and thus would not include complete details regarding the investigation. The summary was included with summaries of two other incidents in order to determine what led to airplane malfunctions for Sky West aircraft.

That is important because the fire President Nelson saw was likely a result of burning fuel leaking from the engine. Thus, it is not necessary that the mechanical components of the engine burned in order for the engine to appear to be on fire. Thus, the summary report would state there was no engine damage while at the same time there was a fire during the incident.


Notes

1. Russell M. Nelson, “Doors of Death,” April 1992 general conference.
2. James H. Stevenson, letter to Billy L. Abram, dated March 30, 1977, included in filing for Dockets 27907, 27908, Hughes Airwest, Deletion—order 77-4-50 adopted April 11, 1977; included in Civil Aeronautics Board, Economic Decisions of the Civil Aeronautics Board, Volume 73 (1977), 1090; cf. 1087–1090.
“But if you are told by your leader to do a thing, do it. None of your business whether it is right or wrong.” Heber C. Kimball, 8 Nov. 1857
User avatar
Moksha
God
Posts: 6281
Joined: Wed Oct 28, 2020 3:13 am
Location: Koloburbia

Re: Fact Checking Nelson's "Doors Of Death" light aircraft near death experience

Post by Moksha »

Tom wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2024 6:45 pm
Because the summary report does not mention a fire, some have wondered if this means President Nelson exaggerated his story. It is important to remember that this summary is not the investigative report of the incident and thus would not include complete details regarding the investigation. The summary was included with summaries of two other incidents in order to determine what led to airplane malfunctions for Sky West aircraft.

That is important because the fire President Nelson saw was likely a result of burning fuel leaking from the engine. Thus, it is not necessary that the mechanical components of the engine burned in order for the engine to appear to be on fire. Thus, the summary report would state there was no engine damage while at the same time there was a fire during the incident.ics Board, Economic Decisions of the Civil Aeronautics Board, Volume 73 (1977), 1090; cf. 1087–1090.
So the FAA practices a form of Mormonism in which details are omitted to furnish a misleading story?
Cry Heaven and let loose the Penguins of Peace
User avatar
tapirrider
Sunbeam
Posts: 62
Joined: Sat Dec 05, 2020 11:01 pm

Re: Fact Checking Nelson's "Doors Of Death" light aircraft near death experience

Post by tapirrider »

Tom wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2024 6:45 pm
For the archive: FAIR’s entry Because the summary report does not mention a fire, some have wondered if this means President Nelson exaggerated his story. It is important to remember that this summary is not the investigative report of the incident and thus would not include complete details regarding the investigation.
Curious that FAIR does not provide the investigative report of the incident, giving complete details. Rather it claims without evidence of any fire that Nelson saw burning fuel.
User avatar
Rivendale
God
Posts: 1228
Joined: Tue Mar 16, 2021 5:21 pm

Re: Fact Checking Nelson's "Doors Of Death" light aircraft near death experience

Post by Rivendale »

tapirrider wrote:
Fri Jul 05, 2024 2:47 pm
Tom wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2024 6:45 pm
For the archive: FAIR’s entry Because the summary report does not mention a fire, some have wondered if this means President Nelson exaggerated his story. It is important to remember that this summary is not the investigative report of the incident and thus would not include complete details regarding the investigation.
Curious that FAIR does not provide the investigative report of the incident, giving complete details. Rather it claims without evidence of any fire that Nelson saw burning fuel.
It is in Mormonism's DNA to make claims without evidence. There seems to be this idea that stacking claims are tantamount to proof. Conjecture is the life blood of Fair and I hope they continue because it is quite entertaining.
drumdude
God
Posts: 5779
Joined: Thu Oct 29, 2020 5:29 am

Re: Fact Checking Nelson's "Doors Of Death" light aircraft near death experience

Post by drumdude »

tapirrider wrote:
Fri Jul 05, 2024 2:47 pm
Tom wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2024 6:45 pm
For the archive: FAIR’s entry Because the summary report does not mention a fire, some have wondered if this means President Nelson exaggerated his story. It is important to remember that this summary is not the investigative report of the incident and thus would not include complete details regarding the investigation.
Curious that FAIR does not provide the investigative report of the incident, giving complete details. Rather it claims without evidence of any fire that Nelson saw burning fuel.
It’s the Sherlock Holmes method. Whatever is possible, however implausible, must be true.
User avatar
Moksha
God
Posts: 6281
Joined: Wed Oct 28, 2020 3:13 am
Location: Koloburbia

Re: Fact Checking Nelson's "Doors Of Death" light aircraft near death experience

Post by Moksha »

Dr Moore wrote:
Wed Jul 07, 2021 8:55 pm
5. How to interpret Nelson's plan making a precautionary landing at Delta Airport, and not an emergency landing in a farmer's field as claimed?
Perhaps the plane was airlifted (or beamed) from the farmer's field to the Delta Airport for a more thorough inspection. Or the farmer's field was merely included to make for a more dramatic tall tale of faith and book writing.
Cry Heaven and let loose the Penguins of Peace
User avatar
IWMP
Pirate
Posts: 1341
Joined: Wed Mar 17, 2021 1:46 pm

Re: Fact Checking Nelson's "Doors Of Death" light aircraft near death experience

Post by IWMP »

DrW wrote:
Mon Mar 29, 2021 10:12 pm
This saga seems intended as a faith promoting story and apparently gets more dramatic with the telling.
Here is how the pilot should have handled an engine fire on a piston engine twin (and probably did if everyone eventually walked away safely).

Loss of power in one engine (let's say Right engine) causes the aircraft to yaw to the right.
This requires immediate application of hard left rudder to maintain control of the aircraft.
Normally the pilot would also bank slightly to the left to assist the rudder authority.
This initial response must be well practiced, automatic and immediate for any twin pilot.

Then (and all this must happen very quickly as well):
For the Right Engine,
- Throttle closed,
- Mixture to idle cut-off
- Fuel selector off
- Electric fuel pump off
- Prop pitch to feather

Then, increase Left engine power as needed to maintain airspeed safely above stall speed. The aircraft should now be stabilized. A twin carrying six passengers would have a transponder, so ATC should be able to identify the aircraft on radar. One would normally call ATC to report an engine out and request a heading to the nearest airport where the plane could be safely landed. ATC should respond with the new heading, distance to the alternate airport, and the airport tower frequency for radio communication. ATC would also notify the alternate airport of the situation. (If the pilot has done his pre-flight planning properly, he would already know where his alternate is.)
____________________________________

Having practiced engine out procedures in a Piper Twin back in the day, I can report that:

- There is no spiraling dive to put out the fire. On an air cooled piston engine any fire will go out when there is no more fuel to burn. (On modern twins there may be a fire extinguisher in the engine nacelle that could be discharged if the fire persisted.)

- Operation of the right engine does not affect the left engine. The good (left) engine definitely does not shut down if the right engine fails. That's the whole point of a twin - fully independent operation of the engines with the ability to maintain altitude on one engine, if necessary.

- Once the Right engine is stabilized it should be a safe, if a somewhat stressful, flight to the nearest airport.
_____________
If the pilot in the plane in the story did end up "spiraling down", it was likely because he was not fast enough on the opposite rudder and momentarily lost control of the aircraft. If this happened, he would need to pull back power on the good engine, apply rudder in the opposite direction of the spin, push the nose over to maintain airspeed, and level the aircraft. To recover straight and level flight, the pilot would then bring back power on the Left engine while applying rudder as needed to maintain control the aircraft. Loss of altitude to accomplish all this should be no more than about 500 feet or so. So, no crash barely avoided by re-starting the good engine at the last possible moment.

However, one can see from the description above where some of the story elements may have come from. If the pilot did momentarily lose control, there would have been a steep bank and a sharp turn to the right (a spiral?). He would have pulled back power to recover the plane. So passengers may have assumed that the Left engine quit since neither engine was producing power.

Losing altitude to the point of a near crash may have been an exaggeration of the response to a momentary loss of control and the attendant altitude loss while the throttle was pulled back on the Left engine. If all this has had occurred at night, it could have been terrifying for everyone, especially if they were IFR in near total darkness and not following the car lights along I-15.
:) thank you
Post Reply