Since the devastating 7.0-magnitude earthquake struck Haiti in January, general aviation pilots have been making an increasingly positive impact in the troubled country; in some regions, GA relief flights are the only way aid is getting through.
Recently, NTSB Chairman Deborah A. P. Hersman issued a warning that those in the government and aviation industry who are enamored of the planned Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) should get their heads out of the clouds and realize that the people who will have to use the system—i.e., the air traffic controllers—are as important to safety as the automation itself.
If you saw Jurassic Park, then you may remember the scene where Jeff Goldblum describes chaos theory as a mathematical discipline where the results of any given problem are never totally predictable, no matter how carefully conditions are controlled.
Never underestimate the importance of an instrument cross-check
As a former SR-71 pilot, and a professional keynote speaker, the question I’m most often asked is “How fast would that SR-71 fly?” I can be assured of hearing that question several times at any event I attend.