Propeller danger zone on the inside of aircraft fuselage?

#1
I needed to bounce this question off more qualifed people.

I'm having an argument with someone at the moment regarding propeller driven aircraft. I've seen plenty of pictures of propeller driven aircraft with the prop zone warnings marked on the external fuselage as a warning to where the prop danger zone is. I'm arguing that certain aircraft (most likely older military aircraft) also had a warning zone inside the fuselage that denoted the area that would get shredded if the plane threw a prop, and that it was ordered that no-one should be dawdling in this area.

The reason I'm saying this is true is that I'm fairly certain I saw an aircraft with an internally marked zone a fair few years ago.

Can anyone chime in with their experience/thoughts?

Thanks,
 
#2
I do know that with over 3,000hrs in DC3’s with a fair bit in the LHS, if there was a whoopsie and the left prop contacted the ground, a sheared shaft could result in the Captain being sliced and diced.

In fact in the airline I flew for just such an accident occurred and the unfortunate skipper was killed. Before my time, though a contemporary of my fathers, who also flew in the same aircraft I did years later.

There was no such warning zone posted though there was a note to that effect in the AFM.
 
#3
Right behind the boss on a DC3 is a small access door colloquially known as the meat hatch. Used to be a baggage door in the old days when it was a state of the art airliner IINM.
 
#4
Every turboprop I have ever ridden in has had the hazard area marked on the inside of the cabin, no matter the manufacturer, including the civilian commuters....

No need to crash, or break the prop off, if there is a governor problem, prop speeds could accidently go supersonic shattering the prop tips spreading 360 degree magic prop shard rainbows of doom and stabbiness.
 
#5
Every turboprop I have ever ridden in has had the hazard area marked on the inside of the cabin, no matter the manufacturer, including the civilian commuters....

No need to crash, or break the prop off, if there is a governor problem, prop speeds could accidently go supersonic shattering the prop tips spreading 360 degree magic prop shard rainbows of doom and stabbiness.
Off the top of your head, can you give any examples? I want to poke around on the web to find pics.

Either that or it'll give me an excuse to travel to one of my favourite aircraft museums this weekend and see for myself

(thanks in advance)
 
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#6
A lot of prop types also have a strip of thicker metal or plastic riveted on the fuselage along the prop plane to protect against chunks of ice coming off the blades.
 
#7
Off the top of your head, can you give any examples? I want to poke around on the web to find pics.

Either that or it'll give me an excuse to travel to one of my favourite aircraft museums this weekend and see for myself

(thanks in advance)
Oddly enough, none of the operators seem to feature the warning labels in their advertisements... I do believe the newish Q400 dual class may manage to put the danger zone between the two classes.
 
#8
In 2003 there was a prop accident on an Israeli Air Force C130, which injured passengers.

Translation of the report from Ynet:

"Six wounded in an Hercules accident
The transport plane, which was on its way from an air force base in southern Israel, landed at Sde Dov. As he moved on the runway, one of the propeller blades of the aircraft's engines broke off and flew into the passenger compartment. The base commander: The incident could have resulted in heavy losses. The commander of the corps appointed a commission of inquiry and grounded the Hercules aircraft system

Felix Frish Last update: 18.08.03, 00:45
A rare mishap occurred Sunday in an Israeli Air Force Hercules cargo plane that landed at Sde Dov in Tel Aviv with dozens of IDF officers and soldiers on board.
The plane, which arrived from one of the air force bases in southern Israel, landed at the airport on a routine basis. As he moved on the runway, a propeller blade snapped off one of his engines
and flew into the passenger compartment. In the flight the blade hit the passengers on his way. Six of the passengers were injured. The wounded were evacuated to Ichilov Hospital, two of them in moderate condition and the rest light.

The air force commander, Major General Dan Halutz, appointed a commission of inquiry headed by a senior officer in the Israel Defense Forces to examine the circumstances of the rare mishap, which has not yet happened in the IDF. The commander of the Air Force grounded the Hercules aircraft system until the problem was clarified."

שישה פצועים בתאונה אווירית של מטוס הרקולס
 
#9
The ditching positions on the P-3 Orion avoided likely trajectories of the prop blades. If I recall the danger zone (just aft of the radio operator and fwd observer positions) were marked. Also I f I recall correctly, the Aussies had an in flight prop separation near the Cocos Islands in the early 1980s which saw the route nav killed. I’ll look it up later when I have better connectivity.
 
#10
Correct that they were marked on the inside. Although, to my understanding, this was to show the location of the props to those making an emergency egress from the aircraft. If a prop comes off a C-130 and goes through the fuselage you're likely to die, no matter where you're sat.
 

AlienFTM

MIA
Book Reviewer
#13
OffTopic:
In 1976 we took ownership of Scorpions from 1RTR. Cabbying across The Plain and Larkhill Impact Area all summer, converting from Chieftain. Ours died with a ghastly knocking. Jock, the driver, was a Chieftain Driver Mech, so after the last but one J60 in UKLF turned up, he watched with interest while Bluebell installed it and ensured the alignment of the fan, just to the driver's right behind the firewall, was just right. Jock paid great attention. We ended up spending a whole day sunning in the 1976 summer. Fixed, Bluebell fired it up. Sweet as. We spent the evening catching up with the squadron.

Jock figured this sunbathing on The Plain was a great idea, so that evening whilst Last Parading the Scorpion, he undid the fan mounting bolts. Next morning, sure enough...

This time Tiffy himself oversaw the installation of the last J60 in UKLF and fan alignment. Tiffy had been technical adviser to THAT recruiting advert in case the Chieftain broke. "I'm a tank gunner and I get £40 a week." As he finished he passed comment. "It's bad. I'll have to grip my lot. You're all very lucky. Had that fan come adrift under load, line of least resistance is through the firewall. Would've killed the driver. Next line of least resistance would be the commander's legs."

Our crew didn't lose any more J60s.

Return;
 
#14
I've worked on the Casa 235, the Fokker 50 and the Beech 200 and I dont recall warning notices on the inside.
The Fokker 50 danger zone is through the lavatory area, the Beech 200 is practically in front of the cockpit, I am not too sure about Casa 235s, but the mil aircraft have a re enforced no window area between the 2-3 windows (or is it 3-4 windows?) with the big fo red striping all the way round the outside... even less sure of the multitude of possible commercial and private configurations of the 235...
 
#15
The ditching positions on the P-3 Orion avoided likely trajectories of the prop blades. If I recall the danger zone (just aft of the radio operator and fwd observer positions) were marked. Also I f I recall correctly, the Aussies had an in flight prop separation near the Cocos Islands in the early 1980s which saw the route nav killed. I’ll look it up later when I have better connectivity.
Amended for accuracy: It was in 1991, with separation occurring just after take-off and the No 2 prop embedded itself just aft of the cockpit and killed the route nav. The acft ditched into the lagoon .There are photos on line showing the prop in the fuselage, but I can't load them for some reason.
 
#16
Mind you if a prop blade is shed it doesn't matter where it goes because the imbalance is going to rip the engine from its mounts before any attempt to shut it down is successful. Then it is in the lap of the gods as to what happens.

A SAAB 340 on a regional flight in Australia lost one of its props (the whole thing sheared off) and luckily missed hitting any part of the aircraft. Having travelled on numerous turbo-prop aircraft I cannot recall seeing any warning markings on the inside of the fuselage but there again, where the prop arc is the manufacturer always ensures that there is no window. If one was sitting next to the prop arc the noise would be horrendous as the majority of prop aircraft noise is created by the propellers.
 
#17
IIRC all our Brit C-130s have prop zone marks on the inside (stripes on the lining sheets). I certainly used to sit there looking at them, and contemplate what might happen if a prop blade came through.
 
#18
the majority of prop aircraft noise is created by the propellers.
Is this correct? Do the propellers really make more noise than the engines? If so, is it becasue their speed breaks the sound barrier?
 
#19
Props are particularly noisy if the tips break the sound barrier but this is restricted to military types such as Tu95 whosepilots have selective deafness due to the noise. Modern passenger aircraft are designed to operate with thetips below the speed of sound for noise purposes.

Prop failures are very rare these days. The Lockheed Constellation had a run of prop failures (mostly whole prop losses) which did a lot of damage to several aircraft. One of the particular problems was the failure of prop pitch mechanisms which were often hydraulically actuated. The pitch control would fail, the engine would overspeed and if it was not shut down then the prop could depart the hub with predictable consequences. Ditto if the prop pitch was locked such that even with the engine shut down the prop would overspeed. Loss of oil to the bearing, prop pitch etc were typical.

Loss of prop blades was more common in the past due to construction methods. Modern props are constructed better and also inspected regularly including ultrasonic crack detection.

Nonetheless, I prefer to sit away fromthe props!
 
#20
ISTR Concorde test pilot Brian Trubshaw mentions losing a prop from a Vickers Viking in his autobiography, saying that it luckily spun outwards and away from the aircraft.
 

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