How you approach crew resource management can be the difference between a good flight and a debacle, whether you’re a new pilot or a junior first officer.
It was April 2003, and I was reeling in the wake of the worst disaster of my young adult life. Chris Smisson, my friend and the leader of our little airshow team, perished in an accident flying his Technoavia SP-95 at the Tyndall Air Force Base show in Panama City. Instead of being in Florida more »
The NTSB found serious deficiencies in the training of controllers
When the NTSB finished its investigation of the September 7, 2015, Beech A36 Bonanza crash near Kernersville, North Carolina, in which the pilot and both passengers were killed, it was just six days after the agency had released an alarming Safety Recommendation Report. The subject of the report was “Emergency Training for Air Traffic Controllers.” more »
A pilot returns to a place of special meaning for him, only this time he’s in the cockpit
Kenya occupies a special place in the heart of many of us who love aviation. It features some of the world’s most legendary landscapes and wildlife—much of which even today is best appreciated and accessed by airplane. No surprise, then, that it’s also been home to several of history’s most legendary early aviators. Perhaps the more »
Connecting with the past forges a more meaningful relationship with flying—and makes us better pilots, too
Airshow pilots have always been a motley and colorful crew of interesting characters. As a rule, they’re resourceful, multitalented and inventive. The people I’ve performed with are from all walks of life. Extroverts and introverts, they range from being airline pilots (lots of them), to dentists, actors and singers, to wealthy land owners and a more »
Flying has always been about looking out the window, finding the frontier, then finding home.
Imagine a wonderful day for flying. Clear sky and just enough wind to keep things stable and fun. Harvest time on the Northern Plains. Combines collect corn. The sugar beet harvest is starting. Long plumes of dust rise from tractor-trailers on gravel roads. This is one of the best reasons to go flying, one of more »
Best year for GA piston sales ever: 1946, 35,000 planes Estimated number delivered in ’46: Less than 10,000 Planes built five years later: 2,302 (down 93% from ’46) Worst year for GA piston sales: 1994, 495 planes Number delivered five years later: 1,748 Best year for piston sales in modern era: 1979, 16,129 delivered Singles more »
Flying never gets old, whether you’re a 100-hour baby bird or a 10,000-hour airline eagle. Here’s one good reason.
Telluride nestles in a pristine mountain valley elevated nearly two miles closer to the sky in southwestern Colorado. The surrounding peaks rear up another 3,500 feet above the valley floor on three sides, steep, forested inclines, challenging and unforgiving to the unknowing. It’s one of the most spectacular alpine venues in the Rockies, ideal for more »
It’s one of aviation’s key concepts, but a deeper version of “attitude” is a part of us who learned to fly.
Attitude: a key concept in aviation, which is the position of an aircraft relative to the wind, but also discussed frequently in addressing a pilot’s judgment and the resultant probable level of safety. But there’s a deeper version of “attitude” at work in those of us who yearned—and then learned—to fly. It’s an attitude born more »
What happened to the EMB-500 Phenom 100 is clear, but why the pilot allowed it to happen is not.
By all accounts, the pilot of the EMB-500 Phenom 100 jet that crashed on December 8, 2014, while on approach to Montgomery County Airpark (KGAI), Gaithersburg, Maryland, was a brilliant man. The 66-year-old medical doctor was the chief executive officer of a pharmaceutical and medical device research company he founded. He also was the winner more »
Reaffirming aviation’s future…one Wisconsin airshow at a time.
When I started to learn to fly, I began reading aviation magazines and soon heard about the big, big annual fly-in called “Oshkosh.” I heard about this amazing EAA-hosted gathering of airplanes, pilots and enthusiasts somewhere or other in Wisconsin. I have to admit, I was intrigued mostly because I had been wearing a pair more »
Here’s what you need to know about life as an RJ pilot
If you’ve been around aviation for very long, you’ve watched airport fences get taller and more robust. At most airfields, the days of just walking up and introducing yourself are long gone. You must have security checks, key cards and a blessing from the Vicar of Christ on Earth to gain access to the ramp more »
Not every CFI has been instructing for ages, and that’s a good thing. Here’s why a freshly minted instructor could be the best choice for you.
Would you want a surgeon to operate on you if he or she had never performed the procedure before? Most people would say not only “No”, but, “Heck, no!” So why would you want to get flight training from someone who’s a new instructor? While there are some limitations of “newbie” instructors, much like a more »
Mooney M20C 2 Minor Injuries The private pilot reported that he conducted a preflight inspection of the airplane and noted that both fuel tanks were full. The pilot then took off for the personal cross-country flight. During approach to landing at the destination airport, the pilot extended the downwind leg due to inbound instrument flight more »
Active business jets in the U.S. in 2014: Approximately 12,500 (on-demand charter included)* Number in 1980: 3,000* Number projected in 2035: 20,815* First bizjet: Lockheed JetStar Year introduced: 1957, to U.S. Air Force Number of engines: Four, fuselage-mounted, two per side, 14,800 lbs. thrust total Seating: 2 crew, plus 10 passengers Max weight/speed/range of JetStar: more »
The Gulfstream IV’s distinctive T-tail jutted above the airport’s perimeter fence. “Now that’s an airplane,” my father whispered, as our car rolled toward the large hangar. The business jet’s paint gleamed against the low overcast; smaller aircraft parked nearby were trounced by its mammoth wingspan and Rolls-Royce engines. Gulfstream 650s and Global 6000s were distant more »
Cessna 140 1 Uninjured The pilot reported that during a night visual meteorological condition flight he was about 5 nautical miles away from the destination airport and could see the runway lights. The pilot further reported that he was not able to see the terrain and it was a “black hole approach.” As the pilot more »
It’s true you’ll experience headwinds most of the time, but this is ridiculous
I was awakened from a deep REM sleep by what sounded like sporadic repetition of “baaharalmminumm” (forgive my poor onomatopoetic translation). As I mentally park my red-and-white Ferrari SF-16H Formula One car after winning the Monaco Grand Prix and fight my way back to consciousness, the sound repeats itself over and over. Oh, yes, now more »
The challenge of flying a new plane to keep you inspired.
In 1993, I stood on the ramp at the Dayton Airshow keenly watching the jets and turboprops in the JPATS competition. The JPATS—Joint Primary Aircraft Training System—program was interesting. In a rare move, the U.S. Air Force and the U.S. Navy decided to team up in an effort to modernize their training fleets and replace more »