Pilot shortage: Where’d all the pilots go?

Professional pilot Erika Armstrong asks — then answers — that question in a recent blog post at DisciplesofFlight.com. The problem, she says, comes down to respect and pride. “The aviation industry begs for leaders who recognize the balance required between honoring this glorious industry, while still making enormous amounts of money. It can be done, but not with a ruler and discipline. It will be done with respect, pride and profit. Bring back the pride and you will bring back the pilots.”

The top five skills a pilot must learn

Blogger Tori Williams at GlobalAir.com makes the case that there’s five essential skills a pilot must learn (besides all that airplane stuff): Good Study Habits; A Willingness to Make Mistakes; Quick Decision Making; Punctuality; and A Sense of Adventure. Check it out here, then comment below if you agree or are there are other skills essential to being a safe pilot she didn’t mention?

Calling all frugal pilots: What are your secrets?

Dan's plane, "Goofy," taking off from the Willits Municipal Airport (www.WillitsAirport.com) which I manage. It's the most fun you can have without a prescription! ;-)

Frugal pilots aren’t cheap or unsafe. Their buying and flying decisions are based on getting the greatest value for each aviation dollar spent, not on squeezing every dollar until Washington yelps.

Frugal pilots aren’t poor. They may or may not be financially rich, but they do know the significance of money and that a dollar saved wisely can be a dollar spent on more avgas or iPhones or retirement.

Frugal pilots aren’t alone. There are many thousands of us who fly comfortably within a budget for a variety of good reasons: To go somewhere, to go nowhere, to see the world from above, to discover ourselves, to share recreation, to overcome fears, and/or to build an aviation career.

At my airport, I hear many stories from grinning pilots who started out mowing lawns, washing airplanes, or taking on a second job to afford flying lessons. Over the years, these veteran pilots have logged thousands of hours in their owned or co-owned aircraft by being frugal — and safe.

What are their secrets?

[Read more…]

New study finds that expert pilots see differently

An experienced pilot will make a better decision about whether to attempt a marginal landing while showing only about half as much brain activity as less experienced pilots, according to a recent study completed by scientists at Stanford University. A report on AVweb quotes the study’s lead author, Maheen Adamson: “The data show that the expert pilot seems to just know what to look for, where to look and when to look.”

Injured soldier gains new lease on life — in the air

Sport_2S

The folks at Quicksilver Aeronautics say they are especially pleased to report the sale of a Special Light-Sport Aircraft, the Sport S2SE, to a different sort of customer — a war hero. While any aircraft delivery is satisfying, this one deserves extra attention, they say.

“I met Jimmy Aguila recently. He called me to say he wanted a Quicksilver  Sport 2SE SLSA,” said Quicksilver Aeronautics President and CEO Will Escutia. “Every day I come to work and face the problems and challenges of running a business. However Jimmy’s story adds proper perspective to life. Jimmy’s story captured my attention and I feel humbled.”

[Read more…]