Planned and Unplanned Emergencies
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    Madeira LPMA

    We flew some passengers into Madeira yesterday morning and got to stay the whole day before flying them home again late evening.  I have been to Madeira three times now and it never ceases to amaze me!  Not for the stunning view on approach, but for many ways that the island will try to kill you!!  Looking in the Jepps, you will see that if your aircraft has more than 10 seats then you have to complete a full simulator training course and carry out famil training at the airport itself.  However, as we only have 10 seats, we can just go in with no training or briefing!  The reason for all the training requirements is that the runway is on stilts, and is set right next to the mountain, and has a curving approach to final, and has severe downdraughts and windshear!  It's like landing on a carrier!  And the take off at night was tricky too - once at 300' you have to turn right immediately to avoid the mountain, and that takes you away from all your visual cues into a black hole!  It's not as if you can divert to anywhere else either, as that puts you on a different island with grumpy passengers!

    But it is a great place to visit, providing the wind is calm and the weather is nice!

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