Flying is as dangerous as we make it, and by that I’m implying that pilots are generally the weakest link in the accident chain. The majority of accidents are often the result of pilot error. Now, I’m not implying that airplanes don’t break, (because they often do) but I’ve seen too many accident reports that could and should have been avoided based on how the pilot reacted to the situation.
This morning I had a sharp reminder of how un-rare great pilots are. Through a few videos, I was reminded of this simple fact: Rarely do we hear about great pilots. Generally we hear about the “horrible pilots”, and get the scewed news stories. But, that’s the news, isn’t it? If there aren’t blood and guts, they won’t report on it.
A perfectly executed crosswind landing is a step-by-step process, but the steps happen in a short amount of time. Learn the steps here, and sharpen your skills in the simulator.
I‘ve always been amazed at how overly complicated people can make crosswind landings seem. While they certainly are one of the more challenging items to master, when it comes to learning to fly, they really aren’t all that complicated.
When learning how to fly, students are generally taught new tasks by simply memorizing procedures. This is a great way to introduce a new concept to the student, but if they don’t eventually understand what is fully happening, they wont be able to cope with any abnormalities that will eventually, and inevitably occur.
Learning to fly is so much more than just learning how to push and pull on the yoke, talk on the radios, and trying to look cool. During my flight training, I was taught early on that to be a professional pilot you need to acquire and stay proficient in three areas of expertise: airmanship, knowledge, and judgment. If you only have two of the three at your disposal, then you’re not your true potential as an aviator. Let’s take a look at each part.
As pilots and aviators, we have to face the facts: 1. Accidents to happen 2. Most of the time it’s the pilot’s fault 3. Mortality rate in aviation accidents is not that great.
Most professional pilots face tremendous pressure. Whether it be from their airline, passengers, or the corporate big-wig they fly for, safety sometimes takes a backseat to getting ‘there’ on time.
Peter James, a new contributor on the Angle of Attack crew, writes about his first experience flying a real jet. This Beechjet 400 has been a popular business jet for years, and for Peter, it’s a dream that he’s been waiting for years to be fulfilled.