This accident is a good reminder that while loose lips sink ships, it’s loose items in the cockpit that can wreak havoc with flight controls.
Paying for pilots
How does a public charter school manage to offer private pilot certificates — for free — to any student who wants one? It all comes down to a unique funding system for schools in New Mexico.
Questions from the Cockpit: Who was first?
Lucas, a private pilot from Connecticut, writes: “There seems to be some disagreement here at the hangar. Was the Cirrus the first airplane with a full-frame parachute?”
Human Factors: Say it out loud
In his report on the gear-up accident to the NTSB, the pilot said that he was alone in the airplane and “I did not state my GUMPS checks out loud,” adding that he normally “religiously” says a minimum of two out loud and sometimes three.
Questions from the Cockpit: Are there decelerated stalls?
Megan, a commercial pilot candidate in Arizona, writes: I’ve just been introduced to accelerated stalls, and it made me wonder if there is such a thing as a decelerated stall. I checked my training books and couldn’t find anything, and when I checked in with Uncle Google, all I got was stuff about car engines stalling when decelerating. I asked my flight instructor and he said, “I don’t know, but I know who would know…”
Five things you don’t know about crop dusters
First of all, don’t call them crop dusters.
In defense of flight suits for general aviation pilots
There seems to be some subtle prejudice against flight suits in GA flying. Maybe some pilots don’t feel we’ve earned the right, not flying combat jets and all. Or maybe it’s something else. I’m not sure what it is, because, arguably, flight suits make sense for any kind of pilot.
Human Factors: The second decision
It’s very easy, after making one bad decision, to make another. And following two bad decisions, not only is your reservoir of luck running low, your options have just been significantly narrowed as well. At three bad decisions, you might as well just call the NTSB yourself to save a bystander the trouble.
Questions from the Cockpit: Right vs. Left
Galen, one of our pilot readers, writes: Hello, I have always wondered why the left magneto is to the right on the keyswitch, and the right magneto is to the left.
Human Factors: The wind at your back is for sailors
What can we learn from an accident that occurred when a pilot was landing at the airport in Spruce Pine, N.C. There are several takeaways, from plan bias to tailwinds to understanding how the slope of a runway affects an airplane’s performance.
Human Factors: Whose fault, really?
When a mechanic’s error leads to an accident, does the pilot and aircraft owner share some of the responsibility?
Students flying high — and for free — in Albuquerque
The Southwest Aeronautics, Mathematics and Science Academy, known as the SAMS Academy, at Double Eagle II Airport (KAEG) in Albuquerque, New Mexico, immerses kids in aviation starting in sixth grade, eventually allowing them to earn their private pilot certificate — for free — before they graduate from high school.