The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association Air Safety Institute (ASI) released a new Reality Check episode in the popular video series.
The debate about the 180-degree “turnback” to the departure runway after engine failure on takeoff—known as the impossible turn—reemerged after the March crash of a Beechcraft Bonanza A36 in Pembroke Pines, Florida.
In Reality Check: The Runway Behind You, the AOPA Air Safety Institute tested the disputed maneuver using a Piper PA-18 Super Cub, a Van’s RV-4, a Cessna 172N, and a Beechcraft Bonanza A36.
“Our study was conducted by highly experienced and proficient pilots flying predetermined profiles in near-perfect conditions. We documented our findings, and the different results of turning back to the runway were surprising for each of us performing these flights,” said ASI SVP Richard McSpadden.