The High Price of a Little Ice - #8387
Tuesday, March 5, 2019
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Some years ago, during a trip to Alaska to reach young Native Alaskans, I spent a lot of time in those little missionary aircraft. It's the only way to get to villages that are like 400 miles from the nearest road! One day when the weather wasn't much fun, our pilot asked me to keep an eye on the wing on my side. He said, "Let me know if you see any icing." Of course, I hear icing, I think of a birthday cake, right? But a pilot hears icing, and he thinks danger in the air. Amazingly, a little ice on the wings can add just enough weight to endanger the whole plane. It interrupts the airflow somehow that keeps the plane airborne, and the plane will start losing altitude. So that day over Alaska, I really kept my eyes open for ice!