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Preface: (New Posts begin after Preface)
Vectors for Safety - a wonderful source for Aviation News, Professional Commentary and Accident Analysis is published monthly by Gene Benson and is now a permanent "Top of the Page" feature of our INFO WAREHOUSE.
To View the Aug. '23 Vectors for Safety CLICK HERE
Selected CHARTING NOTICES FAA Safety Alerts and Charting Notice List Here.
April 13, 2022 To: Users of digital-US Terminal Procedures Publications
From: Aeronautical Information Services - Subject: dTPP Desktop discontinued due to Internet Explorer retiring.
Microsoft is retiring Internet Explorer (IE), and their support of IE, as of June 15, 2022.
When distribution of the DVD was discontinued in approximately 2016, the dTPP DVD folder structure was included in the DDTPPE.zip file. The dTPP DVD folder structure, when downloaded to the user’s computer, allowed the user to access the dTPP Desktop application to browse individual dTPP chart files using the XML. The dTPP Desktop application w/as developed using Internet Explorer. dTPP Desktop does not work in Microsoft Edge or Google Chrome due to security measures inherent in Edge and Chrome.
Because Internet Explorer will be retired by Microsoft, the dTPP DVD folder structure will no longer be included in the DDTPPE.zip file beginning with the September 8, 2022 effective date. The only files provided in the DDTPPE.zip file beginning September 8, 2022, will be the pdf compare files and the XML. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us via the Aeronautical Information Portal at: https://nfdc.faa.gov/nfdcApps/controllers/PublicSecurity/nfdcLogin
9/08/2022 - To: VFR Aeronautical Chart Users: Private Airports Charted on VFR Aeronautical Charts - Effective November 3, 2023, Visual Flight Rules (VFR) aeronautical charts will no longer make reference to emergency value in private airport charting. Only private airports with landmark value will be retained and charted beyond February 23, 2023
9/15/2022 - FAA Regional Air Traffic Divisions Telephone Numbers - Starting with the February 23, 2023 effective date, the Chart Supplement publications will no longer contain the individual FAA Regional Air Traffic Divisions Telephone Numbers in the Associated Data section. These telephone numbers are no longer available due to organizational realignment. The main number for the Air Traffic Control System Command Center will continue to be published in the Chart Supplements. For questions or comments, please contact 9-AWA-AJV-A2-Apt-MapTeam@faa.gov
10/12/2022 - To Users of VFR Charts - Foreign Data on VFR Aeronautical Charts - Effective with the December 29, 2022 chart editions, areas outside of the U.S. shall be skeletonized on all VFR aeronautical charts. Cultural features, hydrographic information and geographic relief shall be retained in subdued and different shades of gray. Only major airports, NAVAIDs and airways shall be charted in foreign areas. These will be in screened black.
10/24/2022 - Establishment of Restricted Area R-2511; Trona, CA - This action establishes restricted area R-2511 in the vicinity of Trona, CA in support of the Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division (NAWCWD), China Lake, CA. The restricted area is necessary to segregate the testing and evaluation of hazardous weapons systems, and other unproven aviation platforms in the early development cycle from non-participating aircraft. - Effective date 0901 UTC, December 29, 2022. More Info Here.
01/10/2023 - Non-Public Airports Charted on VFR Aeronautical Charts - Effective November 3, 2022 Visual Flight Rules (VFR) aeronautical charts will remove all references to emergency use at private airports. The words “emergency or” shall be deleted from VFR aeronautical chart legends in reference to private airports.Beyond the December 29, 2022 effective date private airports with landmark value will be determined using the criteria below.
-Airport operational status
-Length and surface of runway(s)
-Owner’s charting preference
-National Airspace System Resource (NASR) remarks specific to the airport
-Airport significance relative to surrounding chart features
For aeronautical data or charting inquiries visit the Aeronautical Information Portal at https://nfdc.faa.gov/nfdcApps/controllers/PublicSecurity/nfdcLogin.
02/22/2023 - Airport Diagrams - Addition of Lighting and Navigational Aids - Starting with the October 5, 2023 publication cycle, AIS will begin phasing in the addition of lighting and NAVAID information beginning with airports already being revised for information currently published on an airport diagram. As each airport diagram receives the lighting and NAVAID information, the airport’s corresponding Chart Supplement sketch will be removed from the Chart Supplement airport entry. The described aeronautical information previously shown on the sketch will be now available on the diagram instead in greater detail. More info HERE.
03/09/2023 - Foreign Data on Enroute IFR Aeronautical Charts - This notice advises of aeronautical content changes in foreign areas on Enroute IFR Charts anticipated with the June 15, 2023 (or later) effective date. See the notice Here.
07/19/2023 - Changes to Wind Turbine Farms on the VFR Sectional Chart - Effective on or about August 10, 2023, the FAA’s Aeronautical Information Services (AIS) Visual Charting Team will begin implementing charting enhancements to Sectional Aeronautical Charts, VFR Terminal Area Charts, and Helicopter Route Charts to more clearly depict the location of wind turbine farms. This change will also be published in the Aeronautical Chart User’s Guide at bit.ly/FAAChartGuide.
The VFR charting changes will:
- Replace the current dashed line border with a zipper border (aviation blue) for easier identification of the boundaries of the wind turbine farm.
- Add 45-degree (diagonal) cross-hatching lines within all wind turbine farms for increased conspicuity.
- Revise the masked elevation box to include a white background and include the mean sea level (MSL) elevation figure of the highest obstruction (wind turbine rotating blade tip at the 12 o’clock position) within the wind turbine farm. The letters UC are added to depict a wind turbine farm Under Construction. - MORE HERE
Aeronautical Charting Meeting (Charting Group)
- The Aeronautical Charting Meeting (ACM) is a public meeting held two times every year. The purpose of the ACM is three-fold:
- Identify issues concerning safety and usefulness of aeronautical charts and flight information products/services.
- Discuss and evaluate proposals concerning aeronautical charts and flight information publications, digital aeronautical products, database coding, instrument flight procedures, and instrument flight procedure development, policy, and design.
- Provide an opportunity for government and interested participants to brief and/or discuss new navigation concepts, terminal instrument procedures (TERPS) policy/criteria changes, and charting specifications and methodologies.
The Aeronautical Charting Meeting is divided into two groups — the Instrument Procedures Group (IPG) and the Charting Group (CG) See Order 7910.5.
The CG portion of the ACM includes briefings and discussions on recommendations regarding aeronautical charts and flight information products/services. Please visit the ACM Instrument Procedures Group Web Site for information regarding Instrument Procedure issues.
The meeting is a facilitated discussion of new and outstanding topics. The status of an open issue will be reported from meeting to meeting until a resolution is reached, at which point the issue will be closed.
Aeronautical Charting Meeting (ACM) — Charting Group
- ACM 23-01 CG Minutes, April 25-27, 2023 – Virtual (PDF)
- The Chart Supplement Team would like feedback on the proposed changes to the structure of the Chart Supplement (refer to slides 17-19 (PDF)). Please provide feedback by June 30, 2023 to: 9-AWA-AJV-A2-Apt-MapTeam@faa.gov
The next meeting will be held on October 23-26, 2023 as a virtual meeting. Details will be provided at a later date.
To be added to the ACM email distribution list, send a message with your contact information to: firstname.lastname@example.org
New Recommendation Documents for Upcoming ACM (CG)
- Blank Recommendation Document for ACM 23-02 (MS Word)
- New submission deadline for ACM 23-02: Close of business September 29, 2023
Future Dates and Locations
- Meeting 23-02 – October 23-26, 2023 – Virtual
- Meeting 24-01 – April 22-25, 2024 – Virtual
MANUALS You May Need:
- Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM) Basic with Change 1 and 2 (HTML) (Effective 5/19/2022)
- Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM) Basic with Change 1 and 2 (PDF) (Effective 5/19/2022)
- Form 1100-1, Directory – Distribution Change Notice (PDF)
- Air Traffic Organization, Safety Management System Manual (SMS) April 2019 (PDF)
- Air Traffic Organization, Safety Risk Management Guidance to Systems Acquisitions (SRMGSA) March 2020 (PDF)
MANUALS You May Need:
- Pilot/Controller Glossary Basic with Change 1 and 2 (PDF) (Effective 5/19/2022)
- Pilot/Controller Glossary Basic with Change 1 and 2 (HTML) (Effective 5/19/2022)
- /Aeronautical Information Publication (AIP) Basic (PDF) (Effective 5/19/2022)
- Aeronautical Information Publication (AIP) Basic (HTML) (Effective 5/19/2022)
- 2015 Comparison of Air Traffic Management-Related Operational Performance: U.S./Europe (PDF)
NEWEST AERONAUTICAL CHART USRS GUIDE
The Chart Users' Guide is updated when there is new chart symbology or when there are changes in the depiction of information and/or symbols on the charts. It will be published in accordance with the 56-day AIRAC schedule.
Effective Date: 06/15/2023
- Aeronautical Chart Users' Guide (PDF) (Approx. 54.0 MB)
This Chart Users' Guide is an introduction to the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) aeronautical charts and publications. It is useful to new pilots as a learning aid, and to experienced pilots as a quick reference guide
AVIATION MX HUMAN FACTORS QUARTERLY NEWSLETTER
The Aviation MX Human Factors Quarterly is no longer published but was written by maintenance human factors professionals dedicated to identifying and optimizing the factors that affect human performance in maintenance and inspection and is still relevant.
For a COMPLETE LIST of MX HUMAN FACTORS QUARTERLY NEWSLETTERS 2021-2013 and ARTICLES on TOPICS that Include, Past Issues of the MX Fatigue FOCUS NEWSLETTERS, GENERAL FATIQUE, MAINTENANCE FATIQUE, & FATIQUE RISK MANAGEMENT - CLICK HERE.
This Page [latest] was added on 11/09/22 - See Pages IW 1-5 for Previous Posts - Thank You!
08/18/2023 Going With the Flow - FLIGHT SAFETY - From Aviation Safety Magazine - "Risk mitigation requires checklist discipline, an adding some flow procedures can help you trap configuration errors before they become something worse." Read it Here.
08/18/2023 Air Force Going Ahead With $235 Million Blended Wing Prototype - NEWS - From AVweb - "The Air Force has awarded aerospace startup JetZero a $235 million contract to build a piloted blended wing aircraft. In an announcement on Wednesday, the Air Force said it wants the full-sized prototype to finish flight testing by the end of 2027. “The effort aims to mature BWB technology and demonstrate its capabilities, giving the Department and commercial industry more options for future air platforms,” the Air Force said in a press release. The Air Force has a long history of..." Continue Here.
08/16/2023 Maintenance, Paperwork And Checkrides - "It’s fair game for an examiner to dive into your knowledge of the aircraft’s airworthiness and maintenance status on your checkride. - When you present yourself to a designated pilot examiner (DPE) or an FAA employee for a checkride to add a new certificate or rating, both you and the aircraft are subject to closer inspection than you may be accustomed. Pilots aren’t expected to know the dry torque specification for an engine’s cylinder studs, but they definitely are expected to know how to check its oil level and know how to add more, if needed, of the correct type. What about a slack tire? Does the applicant know how to check it? Can the applicant legally add air to it, or even clean the windshield?
08/11/2023 New Pilot Minute Video Covers Desert Survival - In the latest episode of the Pilot Minute video series, Federal Air Surgeon Dr. Susan Northrup outlines some important desert survival strategies and provides information on free post-crash training offered by the FAA’s Civil Aerospace Medical Institute. See the video here: youtube.com/playlist?list=PL5vHkqHi51DQvRjGJo1SuXyZpKl5HbzOI.
08/11/2023 Gravity is Undefeated - Pilots know that a plane's weight plays a crucial role in its performance, but that’s not always apparent to our passengers who might be more accustomed to packing a car until there’s no space left. Instead, pilots must carefully balance passengers, cargo, and fuel to ensure smooth takeoffs and landings. For more on the complexities of this important pre-flight process and how you and your flying companions can shed unnecessary weight for a smooth and safe journey, see the article “Gravity is Undefeated: Why Weight & Balance is Critical to Flight Safety” at https://medium.com/faa/gravity-is-undefeated-997a39d01521 in the July/Aug 2023 issue of FAA Safety Briefing. See our entire flying companion-themed issue at www.faa.gov/newsroom/faa-safety-briefing-magazine.
08/11/2023 Trapped Into VFR - "VFR" SAFETY - Aviation Safety Magazine - "Three Piper Cherokee accidents highlight how VFR-into-IMC happens. A bit of preflight planning and enhanced awareness of the traps we often fly into can help." Three REAL Accidents - Continue Here.
08/11/2023 Version 2.0 of the Urban Air Mobility Concept of Operations - NEWS - From Aviation Today - "BALTIMORE, Maryland — One of the most interesting panel discussions that took place during the recent AAM Summit—presented by the FAA and AUVSI—revolved around the evolving landscape of urban air mobility (UAM). Central to the discourse was the significance of collecting pertinent data to facilitate the integration of new aerial vehicles into existing airspace systems.
A speaker from NASA emphasized the organization’s role in gathering data to aid both the FAA and the wider industry, underscoring the importance of preparedness to scale operations and make certification timelines more efficient. Industry participants shared insights from..." Finish Reading Here.
08/09/2023 Discussion of Air Traffic Issues with REI & SBD 7-18-23 - Redlands Airport Association meets with SBD Tower - Discussion Notes - "Attendees: Phil Ensley (Redlands Airport Association), Ted Gablin (Redlands Airport Association), Mike Bunch (SBD Tower Manager), Larry Rice (REI CFI), Earl Schofield (REI CFI), Ken Laymon (REI Pilot), Cindy Gablin (Redlands Airport Association) - The main purpose of the meeting was to open communication between REI users and SBD air traffic controllers to see how we can best help each other with air traffic issues. The meeting was very informal and informational." Read the Meeting Notes Here.
08/06/2023 Industry Experts Weigh In On Equity, Safety, and Efficiency in Advanced Air Mobility - AAM INFO - From Aviation Today - "BALTIMORE, Maryland —Delivery drones and passenger air taxis are set to take center stage in the advanced air mobility landscape. Yet, as we prepare for the next wave of advancements, pressing questions around equitable access are surfacing. At a panel discussion during the AAM Summit—presented by the FAA and AUVSI—speakers from NASA, UPS, and the Department of Transportation addressed the challenges of ensuring fair access to these emerging technologies.
Deputy Administrator at NASA, Pam Melroy; Vice President of Flight Operations and Safety at UPS, Houston Mills; and Undersecretary for Policy for the DOT, Carlos Monje, presented their insights on overcoming the equity barriers and paving the way for the widespread adoption and benefits of AAM." - Read the total account Here.
08/06/2023 Joby Q2 Net Loss Widens as eVTOL Manufacturer Gears Up for Certification - NEWS - From FLYING - "The company’s net loss skyrocketed, but its strong cash position and continued certification progress keep it on track for a 2025 launch. - Electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft manufacturer Joby Aviation is still losing millions in its pursuit of the country’s first eVTOL air taxi route, but its investments are beginning to pay off." Continue Here.
08/01/2023 Carburetor Icing ALERT! - Much has been published about carburetor icing and the use of carburetor heat. So why did a pilot fail the oral portion of a checkride due to a lack of understanding of carburetor icing? No, carburetor icing does not require OAT less than 32 degrees, and, no, carburetor heat is not exhaust air. The DPE mentioned that the same is found among applicants. Understand your assignment? Here’s a list of references:
• Advisory Circular 20‑113 "Pilot Precautions and Procedures to be Taken in
Preventing Aircraft Reciprocating Engine Induction System and Fuel System
Icing Problems,'' (10/22/1981, but is still active)
• Advisory Circular 20-73, “Aircraft Ice Protection” (4/21/71 but is still active)
• Airplane Flying Handbook (FAA-H-8083-3C)
• AOPA Safety Briefing, “Combating Carb Ice”
• FAA Special Airworthiness Information Bulletin CE-09-35, “Carburetor Icing Prevention”
• Lycoming Service Instruction No. 1148C, “Use of Carburetor Heat Control”
• NTSB Safety Alert SA-029: “Engine Power Loss Due to Carburetor Icing”
• Pilot’s Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge (FAA-H-8083-25C)
• Pilot’s Operating Handbook (for your aircraft)
Thanks to Long Beach Flying Club for this notice.
08/01/2023 ESA Taps Spire to Design Space-Based Aircraft Surveillance System - NEWS - From Aviation Today - "The European Space Agency (ESA) awarded Spire Global a contract to design an aircraft surveillance system. It is a 16 million euro phased contract for a project called EURIALO, which is mainly funded by the German Space Agency, DLR.
Spire will design a satellite constellation in Low-Earth Orbit (LEO) that would track aircraft by determining their exact position based on different times of arrivals of radio frequency (RF) signals. Under this contract, Spire would also launch a demonstration mission, and there is a potential opportunity to be selected to build out the full constellation. - ESA said that current surveillance systems use aircraft self-reported positions from GNSS satellites, and an additional solution will increase reliability and resiliency. - Spire has a newly established..." Continual Here.
08/01/2023 Dark Side of Visual Approaches - ASRS DirectLine - Issue #3 1992 - "The Visual Trap" - By Perry Thomas - "It is an anomaly that most air carrier companies do not allow their flight crews to cancel their IFR flight plan or fly on a VFR flight plan but do allow their flight crews to accept the visual approach. In accepting a visual approach, the pilot rejects the historic and hallowed protection of the air traffic control system and assumes the responsibility to "see and avoid" other traffic.
The controller statement "You are cleared for the visual approach" is a welcome pronouncement for flight crews. There is an anticipated lessening of the workload, a quicker and more relaxed end to the flight. Yet many of the reports received at the ASRS detail unexpected and unwanted occurrences for pilots flying the visual approach" -- such as the following wrong airport landing incident.
- "The weather was scattered clouds, thirteen miles visibility. [The] First Officer was the pilot flying, and I was operating the radios."We were being vectored by Approach Control to the airport ... I was inside [the cockpit] tuning the radios when Approach asked if we had the airport in sight. I looked up and out the window and saw ... the airport slightly to our left. I asked [the] First Officer if he saw it and he said 'Yes.' I told Approach we had the airport in sight, and they cleared us for the visual...."Our position was such that we had to immediately configure for approach [and] landing. Our focus from that point was outside the cockpit. We ... were switched over to the Tower and cleared to land. We heard no more radio calls after that."On the landing roll it became obvious that something was not right. After some radio calls, we were informed that this airport was ... a few miles short of ... the intended point of landing."
Benefits of the Visual
Given the potential for error such as this wrong airport approach and landing, why conduct visual approaches at all? Who benefits from visual approaches? Well, there are advantages for flight crews and controllers alike.
When pilots cross-check the visual with available electronic navigation, there is often a reduction in the level of navigation effort required; in addition there is a greater degree of flexibility in the planning and execution of their approach. Tighter sequencing, and what is often a more direct route to the airport translates into a reduction in flight time and fuel burn. At smaller or more remote airports where "full" approaches would otherwise be conducted, these savings may be considerable.
For controllers, a visual approach is an essential tool in the effort to maximize traffic flow (especially at busier airports). Visual approaches dramatically reduce controller workload -- ATC's IFR separation requirements are eliminated and the pilot assumes the burden for maintaining adequate separation.
The "Dark" Side of the Visual
The visual approach, intended to benefit everyone, frequently results in pilots experiencing exactly the opposite effect. Visual approach incidents reported to the ASRS frequently cite confusion, with resultant stress on the flight crews. There are a variety of performance errors revealed in ASRS reports.
While I paint with a broad brush, bear in mind that my negative impressions of the numerous serious hazards inherent in the visual approach have been gathered from reading and analyzing hundreds of ASRS reports on visual approaches, where the results of the visual approach produced unwanted results.
The Wrong Objective
Many reports indicate that airports or runways are either misidentified, or in some cases, lost after initial (and correct) recognition.
- "I called for slats, flaps, gear down, and landing check. While turning final for the runway, we both commented 'This isn't right,' at which time the Approach Controller called saying 'Pull up, you're looking at XXX [wrong airport].' "
And in another incident, the First Officer reports: "At 500 feet AGL the Captain realized we were lined up with the wrong runway. I called [out, saying] I was going around."
Too often the traffic that the flight crew agrees to follow cannot be identified. In some instances, the flight crew visually acquires the traffic, only to lose it through distraction or other problems.
- "While we were on a right downwind ... Approach asked us if we had the air carrier widebody (which we were following), in sight. We answered that we did. After we turned onto a right base for Runway 24R, Approach changed our Runway to 24L. I subsequently put the new runway into the FMC and the ILS into the ... [navigation] radio. Approach then called out small commuter traffic which I acknowledged. I then asked the Captain where the widebody was because I had lost him in the ground clutter after tuning the ILS...."
Misidentification of the required traffic is also a problem, particularly at busier airports.
- " ... [the Controller] asked us 'Do you have the ... [aircraft] ... at your 11 o'clock?' We responded we had the traffic. The traffic eventually passed our 9 o'clock. The Captain started his turn to base...."
Traffic that was following this reporter's flight queried the reporter's perceived early turn to base, and the reporter's error was then discovered:
- " ... it's really easy to pick out the wrong aircraft like we did...."
Visual approaches to parallel runways are especially rich incident-producing events; it seems logical that it is more difficult to maintain visual contact with parallel traffic than traffic you may be following to a single runway. A constant flow of reports to ASRS on flawed visual approaches highlights the hazards of losing sight of close proximity traffic.
- "As Captain, I had the airport in sight out the copilot's window as we were on base leg. As we approached downtown I overshot final, resulting in being lined up closer to the left runway than to the right runway. [The] Tower Controller advised we were encroaching on south complex airspace. He also advised we were close to another air carrier ... on final for the south complex. [The] Controller asked us if we had [the] air carrier ... in sight. We did not. In spite of good visibility, [the] air carrier [aircraft] was difficult to see in the background of buildings. We had to transmit several times to the Controller in order to sight and identify the traffic."
And in another parallel approach incident ...
- " ... Approach gave us our co-approach [traffic] ... on the Tiptoe visual (we were on the Quiet Bridge) at about 20 miles out. I clearly saw him and figured we would be landing approximately together, he on 28L and us on 28R! At about 3 miles to go to the high span, on course but high, Bay [Approach] switched us to Tower. I changed frequency, looked back out and our co-approach [traffic] ... was crossing my course 30 degrees off my heading, about 1,000 feet lower. He passed to our right. We stopped our descent and slowed to keep him in sight! He then wrapped it up in a left turn back to the [left] runway."
The reporter concludes with this admonishment:
"There is a time for basic airmanship and see and avoid -- it is all the time!"
Landing Without Clearance
Most incidents of landing without clearance reported to ASRS are out of visual approaches --flights touch down with their crews having neglected to request their landing clearance. Reporters often cite complacency as a factor; others point to changes or increases in workload.
- "While on initial approach we were held at a high altitude longer than desirable. Due to the steep descent path required to successfully complete the approach, our workload was increased. Due to the increased demands on us -- because of the steep approach -- we failed to contact the tower before landing."
Too Quick Off the Mark
Flight crews may tend to "anticipate" a clearance when asked if they can accept a visual. Frequently reported are altitude deviations when the flight crew agreed they could accept a visual approach and then immediately started to descend -- before the controller said the magic words that cleared them for the visual approach.
- "The First Officer was flying and overshot his turn to the radial -- which was our clearance. [The] Approach Controller asked if we had the airport in sight, to which I replied 'affirmative,' although the First Officer did not see it. (Emphasis added.) [The] Approach Controller then said, 'Cleared for the Quiet Bridge visual.' The First Officer keyed ... [on] the word 'visual,' and started descent while I was attempting to program the FMC for the approach. [The] Controller advised [us that] we had busted our altitude."
Many incidents reported seem to indicate that flight crews are overly optimistic regarding their ability to see and identify traffic, airports and runways, and often reply inappropriately to the query "do you have ________ in sight?"
Electronic navigation is frequently ignored or abandoned.
- "Making a visual approach, we were cleared to land on Runway 33L from our present position approximately 10 miles ENE [of the airport]. Despite having our NAVAIDS tuned and the HSI set for ILS Runway 33L approach, we set up on base and turned final for visual approach to Runway 33R."
It appears from what I read in ASRS reports, and from my own experience, that we all -- all categories of pilots -- have at one time or another (even frequently) succumbed to enticement, and accepted visual approaches when it was not timely or appropriate to do so. Why do otherwise sane and sensible pilots consistently fall into "The Visual Trap?"
I must conclude that the primary motivation, aside from the desire of the flight crew to cooperate with the ATC system and the controller in expediting other traffic, is to expedite arrival of their own particular flight.
Keeping the Objective in Sight
One of our better ways of learning how to stay alive in the flying game is to profit from the unhappy experience of others. Here are a few practical, no-nonsense suggestions from these same reports that should reduce some of the hazards.
For All Approaches
- Review and brief all applicable visual and instrument charts before the approach;
- DO NOT identify traffic in sight, airport in sight, or runway in sight, unless you are certain of your identification, and your flight deck mates concur;
- Keep your traffic in sight; if you lose your traffic, tell ATC;
- Ensure that at least one pilot monitors the gauges and radios to "aviate, navigate, and communicate;"
- Use all available electronic navigation to back-up the visual;
- If visual approaches are being conducted but you don't want a visual, insist on an ILS or other instrument approach. Bear in mind, however, that during your instrument approach, other aircraft in your proximity may be conducting a visual approach;
- Expect visibility to deteriorate and be reduced if you are descending into a smog/haze layer, (and possibly the setting or rising sun), during the turn to base and final. This may lead you to misidentify the runway to which you are cleared.
For Parallel Approaches
- Be aware that parallel runway approaches means that there is likely to be other traffic close at hand. There may be a significant increase in flight deck workload -- unless the flight crew briefs and prepares themselves to the maximum extent possible. Safety in visuals will be enhanced by close coordination between flight crew members, and by maintaining a careful traffic watch outside the aircraft;
- Beware of overshooting runway alignment and encroaching into the parallel runway's approach path;
- Beware the dangers of "The Visual Trap."
In putting together, the information for this article, I have borrowed extensively from Captain William P. Monan's NASA Contractor Report (Number 166573) entitled "Cleared for the Visual Approach -- Human Factors in Air Carrier Operations." Captain Monan's report covers all aspects, pro and con, of visual approaches and it should be required reading for all thoughtful pilots who may be concerned about visual approaches."
08/01/2023 Spot Emergency Satellite Comms Claim 9,400 Saves Over 15 Years - Safety Info & PR - From AVweb - "Flying light airplanes can easily take you outside of cellphone range, especially for pilots who fly in backcountry environments. A forced landing, even if successful, could leave you out of touch and with no good way to call for assistance. That can be deadly if the pilot or a passenger is injured. - As part of the Globalstar satellite network corporate family, a Spot tracking and/or messaging device can be a lifesaver. Continue Here.
08/01/2023 Retrofitted Hybrid-Electric Cessna 337 To Make Historic Flight To Alaska - From Simple Flying - "Ampaire's Eco EEL will make a historic flight from California to Alaska for a ceremony on August 12." Read it Here.
07/30/2023 Why Twins Crash - From Aviation Safety Magazine - "We think the best you can do is analyze the twin-engine accident record across a range of models, try to determine how and why twins crash, then decide for yourself whether the risks of flying a twin are more or less manageable than those involved with flying a single.
Continuing our examination of accident records for individual models, we've reviewed the NTSB reports for six twins, ranging from the Piper PA-23 Apache/Aztec series to Cessnas popular 421 cabin-class cruiser. We looked at 545 accidents during the five years between 1994 and 1998." Results Here.
07/30/2023 EAGLE Initiative Shows Measured Progress, Fuel Contenders Say at Oshkosh - From Flying - "With four candidate fuels pursuing fleet authorization, OEMs, distributors, and airports are ready to test them." Continue Here.
07/30/2023 NEW FINDINGS SHED LIGHT ON DRONE ENCOUNTERS - From AOPA - "Newly published research shows objective evidence that aircraft are most at risk of encountering uncrewed aircraft during departure and approach, and recommends mitigations to enhance separation." Read the report Here.
07/27/2023 Memorandum - FAA - TO: Instrument Flight Procedures Service Providers - FROM: Eric S. Parker, Acting Manager, Flight Technologies and Procedures Service Division - Subject: Waiver to FAA Order 8260.3, United States Standard for Terminal
Instrument Procedures (TERPS), STAR Termination Altitude.
This memorandum waives the requirement of FAA Order 8260.3 paragraph 2-2-7.f(2) for Flight Standards approval when, due to an operational need, an altitude is not established at the termination fix on a STAR that does not join an approach. Establishing an altitude at the termination fix on STAR that does not join an approach is beneficial for arrival descent planning purposes and is highly encouraged where practical. We recommend consulting Flight Standards, Flight Procedures and Airspace Group early in the design phase to assist in understanding how an altitude at a termination fix benefits operators.
No additional waiver request action is required. Please direct all inquiries to the Flight Procedures and Airspace Group, Standards Section (405) 954-1139 or 9-AWA-AVSAFS420@faa.go
07/27/2023 No Chat GPT In The FAA - From AVweb - "The FAA has issued a statement saying it does not use Chat GPT to help write computer code in its air traffic operations (ATO) or in any other systems. The agency hastily issued the statement after the Department of Transportation published a list of AI use throughout its organization. The list is required for compliance with an..." Continue Here.
07/27/2023 FAA Launches Commercial Human Spaceflight Occupant Safety Rulemaking Committee - FAA - Today, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is launching a rulemaking committee to examine the development and cost of possible future regulations for commercial human spaceflight occupant safety.
The agency is taking this action due to the increase in commercial space activities and the impending end of the Congressional prohibition on commercial human spaceflight regulations in October 2023.
The committee is expected to gather recommendations from industry and other stakeholders to help the FAA plan, conceive, and implement—when the time is right—a well-informed, thoughtful, regulatory regime for commercial human spaceflight occupant safety. Recommendations will be submitted to the FAA next summer.
07/26/2023 Torrance City Council Action - Voted Upon 7/25/2023 and approved -
9. ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS
9A. Transportation Committee –ACCEPTED and FILED April 12, 2023 Meeting Minutes and Provide Direction Regarding Airport Landing Fees, Airport Noise Mitigation Efforts, and Phase Out of Leaded Gas. Expenditure: None.
1) ACCEPTED and FILED the Transportation Committee meeting minutes of April 12, 2023; and
2) APPROVED implementation of airport landing fees for all transient aircraft and Torrance-based fixed wing flight school operators with fleets of more than three (3) aircraft, and authorize certain exemptions for military, public safety, medical flights,and Robinson Helicopter; and
3) APPROVED a Letter of Agreement between the City of Torrance and Torrance-based fixed wing flight school operators; and
4) PROVIDED direction on the proposed noise study alternatives to potentially expand the existing airport noise monitoring system; and
5) APPROVED the phase out of leaded gas with a target of phasing it out within the next 12-months; and
6) RECEIVED updates on the legalities of prohibiting touch-and-go landings on the south and north runways, imposing a moratorium on new flight school operators, and enforcement of early left turn violations.
- Approved a ban on all training operations on weekends and City of Torrance recognized holidays, and modified weekday hours when such training will be allowed to Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Staff to return to City Council with a report on whether new restrictions made a difference on airport noise.
- Approved a moratorium on all additional flight schools and directed staff to notify two most recent flight schools that received a business license that they will not be able to renew their license, unless another flight school departs the City, to ensure compliance with the resolution that allows for a total of six flight schools. Staff to return to City Council with a modification to the existing resolution that will require the City Council to approve business licenses for flight schools.
- Directed staff to begin reinforcement of early left-turns.
- Directed staff to issue a formal letter to the FAA and Tower regarding concerns related to the airport.
07/24/2023 How to Comment on a Proposed FAA Policy - Following a few guidelines for simple do’s and don’ts can help ensure your comment makes the impact you desire. - From Flying - "A well-structured and thoughtful comment can significantly impact an agency’s final decision. In this guide, we will explore the key components of making a substantive comment to the FAA, highlighting examples and offering do’s and don’ts for effective commenting." Read How Here.
07/23/2023 How Airports Can Prepare For Electric Aircraft - From Aviation Today - "Engineering firm WSP has taken the lead in assisting airports in the preparations for electric aircraft. With electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) vehicles on the horizon, WSP is working closely with clients to integrate these groundbreaking advancements into their master plans.
A significant project currently underway is WSP's collaboration with Philadelphia International Airport, where they are incorporating provisions for a state-of-the-art vertiport facility into the airport's master plan update. This approach demonstrates the airport's commitment to embracing advanced air mobility and ensuring seamless integration of eVTOLs into their operations. - Additionally, WSP is spearheading the master plan for the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center in Dallas, which encompasses the redevelopment of an existing vertiport to accommodate electric aircraft." More Here
07/23/2023 New Pilot Minute Video Covers Safety Considerations with Sunglasses - In the latest episode of the Pilot Minute video series, Federal Air Surgeon Dr. Susan Northrup explains a few aeromedical and general safety considerations to keep in mind when choosing sunglasses used in flight. For example, photosensitive lenses are not suitable for aviation purposes because they respond to changes in light intensity too slowly. See the video here: youtube.com/watch?v=sqm62EnYLpE&list=PL5vHkqHi51DQvRjGJo1SuXyZpKl5HbzOI
07/23/2023 Tropical Weather - Sometimes you'll fly to the tropics, but sometimes the tropics will come to you. - "Rich moisture, weaker winds, and an increase in thunderstorms are classic signs that tropical moisture has entered the forecast equations. The media also becomes filled with headlines about hurricanes and tropical storms. And perhaps your cross-country trips even take you south to the tropical regions. - With these new weather elements, how can you stay safe while flying, and what hazards should you look for? We’ll cover that in this article..." Continue Here.
07/23/2023 The following signed Policy Memorandums and Letters are posted for awareness.
- Approval of Non-coincident Visual Glide Slope Indicator and Glidepath Angle or Vertical Descent Angle, dated 06/13/2023
- Advanced Required Navigation Performance (A-RNP), dated 06/22/2023
- MOA between AFS and AJV on Specials, Waivers, and Approvals Processing, dated 06/27/2023
- MOA between AFS and AJV on Criteria Automation Alignment, dated 06/27/2023
- Waiver to FAA Order 8260.19(), Flight Procedures and Airspace on Approved PBN Helicopter Off-Airway Non-95 Routes, dated 07/06/2023
- Waiver to FAA Order FS 8260.57(), Oversight of Non-FAA Instrument Procedure Service Providers on Approved PBN Helicopter Off-Airway Non-95 Routes, dated 07/06/2023
07/23/2023 FAA Advisory Circular 90-113C Published - FAA Advisory Circular 90-113C, Instrument Flight Procedure Validation (IFPV) of Performance Based Navigation (PBN) Instrument Flight Procedures (IFPs), was signed by Flight Standards Service (AFX-1).
The advisory circular (AC) provides the means for conducting IFPV of satellite-enabled PBN instrument flight procedures (IFPs) for both fixed-wing and helicopter aircraft. It also addresses validation of helicopter Wide Area Augmentation System special IFPs. This AC describes ground validation, pre-flight validation, and flight validation. The contents of this document do not have the force and effect of law and are not meant to bind the public in any way. This document is intended only to provide clarity to the public regarding existing requirements under the law or agency policies. Please note that non-FAA service providers are not required to perform IFPV of PBN IFPs. If a non-FAA service provider chooses to perform IFPV of PBN IFPs; however, this AC provides the directions for doing so.
At the time of publishing, the following is canceled:
- FAA Advisory Circular 90-113B, Instrument Flight Procedure Validation (IFPV) of Performance Based Navigation (PBN) Instrument Flight Procedures (IFPs), dated 03/20/2019.
07/23/2023 FAA Order 8260.19J Published. - FAA Order 8260.19J, Flight Procedures and Airspace, was signed by Flight Standards Service (AFX-1). - The order provides guidance to all FAA personnel for the administration and accomplishment of the FAA Flight Procedures and Airspace Program. Additionally, this order provides guidance for the military and other government agencies to use when interacting with the FAA regarding instrument flight procedures. This order contains guidance that is pertinent to 14 CFR parts 71, 91, 95, 97, 121, and 135.
At the time of publishing, the following occurs:
- Cancels FAA Order 8260.19I, Flight Procedures and Airspace, dated 06/29/2020.
- Approves revisions for the following FAA Forms (Effective 06/2023)
- FAA Form 8260-1, Flight Procedure Standards Waiver
- FAA Form 8260-3, ILS Standard Instrument Approach Procedure
- FAA Form 8260-4, RADAR Standard Instrument Approach Procedure
- FAA Form 8260-5, Standard Instrument Approach Procedure
- FAA Form 8260-7A, Special Instrument Approach Procedure
- FAA Form 8260-7B, Special Instrument Approach Authorization
- FAA Form 8260-9, Standard Instrument Approach Procedure Data Record
- FAA Form 8260-16, Transmittal of Airways/Routes Data Record
- FAA Form 8260-17.1, Standard Terminal Arrival (STAR)
- FAA Form 8260-17.2, STAR Data Record
- FAA Form 8260-18, Attention All Users Page (AAUP)
07/23/2023 What Airport Areas Are Considered Tarmac? - Tarmac pavement as it is known today was originally inspired by an accident outside a factory." Learn about it Here.
07/23/2023 Trapped Into VFR - Three Piper Cherokee accidents highlight how VFR-into-IMC happens. A bit of preflight planning and enhanced awareness of the traps we often fly into can help. - From Aviation Safety Magazine - "After further discussion, the pilot agreed to a hotel room. With the airport gate code, he left in a rental car. - The pilot returned to the airport after the FBO had closed and added 27 gallons of self-service 100LL and departed at 2005 local. The airplane climbed for about 10 minutes, reaching about 7200 feet msl. The final two minutes of the flight included a descent and a series of tight turns before entering a rapidly descending spiral turn. The airplane’s final position was recorded at 2017, about 0.15-mile south of the accident site at an altitude of about 2000 feet msl. The ADS-B data plotted by the NTSB is shown below. - At 2015, recorded weather included visibility of one statute mile; thunderstorms and..." Three tales of sorrow, Continue Here.
07/23/2023 Joby Releases Assessment of Air Taxi’s Environmental Impact - "The air taxi manufacturer set out to assess emissions from its current and future operations and said it’s the first to do so. -
The LCA is part of Joby’s inaugural environmental, social, and governance (ESG) report, which the company now plans to release annually. The report was led by Claire Boland, the company’s newly appointed sustainability lead who has held sustainability roles for about a decade with companies such as PepsiCo and PVH Corp. - “I’m delighted to join a company that is changing the future of transportation for the better while being transparent about how we impact the environment and local communities,” said Boland." Big Enviromental News HERE.
07/23/2023 Fly the Aircraft First - FAA SAFETY - "NTSB accident data suggests that pilots who are distracted by less essential tasks can lose control of their aircraft and crash. In light of this, pilots are reminded to maintain aircraft control at all times. This may mean a delay in responding to ATC communications and passenger requests, or not responding at all unless positive aircraft control can be maintained throughout. In other words, Fly the Aircraft First! - The top priority — always — is..." Continue Here. "Fly the airplane First During Go Arounds in 57 Seconds" VIDEO - HERE.
07/23/2023 An Avian Drone Flaps Its Way into the Sky - "A drone platform fitted into the cavity of a taxidermy bird can fly using its wings, and help study wildlife." Continue Here.
07/23/2023 More Training Aircraft in Reach With FAA’s Proposed MOSAIC Rule - "If the NPRM transitions to an official rule, several of the aircraft that currently make up the training fleet could be legally flown with a sport pilot certificate"- Read More Here
07/23/2023 The July/August 2023 issue of FAA Safety Briefing magazine focuses on flying companions. - Building on our previous companion-based editions, this issue is designed for the friends and loved ones who join us in the air or might have an interest in doing so. Feature articles help regular or prospective passengers gain a better understanding of general aviation and offer tips, techniques, and resources to take a more active role during flight.
The Art of Airplane Introductions - How to Make a Good First Impression with a Proper Preflight Inspection
Bring Your 'A' Game - Fly the Airplane, First and Always
PilotSpeak - A Beginner's Guide to the Aviation Lexicon
Gravity is Undefeated - Why Weight and Balance is Critical to Flight Safety
Soar as a Safety Superhero - Use Your Superpowers to Support the FAA Safety Team
07/23/2023 Latest AOPA video on the MOSAIC Notice of Proposed Rulemaking. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jowb0V1FMgg&t=33s
07/19/2023 FAA Releases Its ‘Innovate28’ Plan for AAM Integration by 2028 -From Flying - "Landmark document details early air taxi operations, certification, infrastructure, environmental concerns, and more. - Electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft get most of their lift from rotors and propellers, but they just received a massive lift from the FAA.
After months of anticipation, the agency on Tuesday released its first implementation plan for advanced air mobility (AAM) aircraft such as eVTOL air taxis. Dubbed “Innovate28,” the living document, which will be updated periodically, is designed to enable AAM operations at scale in time for the 2028 Olympic Games in Los Angeles, when several air taxi firms are expected to take to the skies. - Its publication follows the release of the FAA’s air taxi blueprint and a proposed rule for AAM pilot certification and training. More Here.
07/19/2023 OMB has posted the pre-publication version of the MOSAIC Notice of Proposed Rulemaking. Gyroplanes will be able to qualify for S-LSA certificates if constructed in accordance with light sport industry consensus standards. In addition, heavier aircraft, including heavier gyroplanes, could qualify as light sport aircraft and could therefore be flown by sport pilots. Many more positive reforms. https://public-inspection.federalregister.gov/2023-14425.pdf - The official NPRM will appear in the Federal Register on July 24, 2023. At that point, it will be open for public comment for 60 days.
07/14/2023 FAA PROPOSES LODA RELIEF - From AOPA - "The FAA issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) on June 23 intended to reverse needless bureaucratic paperwork burdens in the form of letters of deviation authority (LODA) for pilots conducting flight training activities. - The NPRM would also allow all public aircraft operations (PAO) flight time to be logged toward FAA civil regulatory requirements, expanding the 2018 FAA reauthorization law, which allowed pilots conducting forestry control and fire protection PAO flights to log flight time.
AOPA diligently worked with congressional allies to reverse a 2021 FAA LODA directive, but at that time the FAA fought vigorously to limit the exemption to experimental aircraft owners, pilots, and flight instructors who simply wanted to give or receive flight training. This limited version was ultimately included in a 2022 national defense law. Now, this current NPRM seeks to expand the LODA exemption to other categories of aircraft as AOPA had originally suggested in 2021." Continued Here.
07/13/2023 ForeFlight Adds ‘Runway Alert’ Deconfliction Feature - From AVweb - "...runway incursions, now there’s an app for that. The latest ForeFlight release includes a feature that warns the crew of an aircraft on final approach if there’s an airplane on the runway to which they are headed. It also warns the crew of the airplane on the runway that another one is headed their way. Aircraft have to be connected to an ADS-B or FLARM receiver for the Airplane on Runway Alert feature to work. - Last winter saw an uptick in potentially serious incursions in which aircraft were cleared to take off and land on the same runway at roughly the same time. In one case..." Finish reading Here.
07/10/2023 ARIZONA: ARIZONA ADDITIONAL FREQUENCY PROJECT - SCAUWG.ORG and SCAUWG has been helping Lee Unger, FAASTeam Rep. & SCAUWG.ORG Contributing Editor & SCAUWG member, who has been very instrumental in the quest to obtain more frequencies for ARIZONA airspace, with the goal of safer airspace separation in mind. SCAUWG member Mr. Bradfield (FAA) "is being very helpful!! What an opportunity... for Arizona!" Feb. 2022 - This project is now approaching realization status!
Update July 10, 2023 - Letter from ASAG to SCAUWG (Southern California Airspace Users Working Group)
The frequencies we are requesting are 121.950 MHz, 122.775 MHz, 122.850 MHz, and 123.300 MHz.
ASAG's Request for Waiver can be viewed here
07/10/2023 SMa.r.t. Column: The Future Of Santa Monica Airport (SMO) - From Santa Monica Mirror - INFO & OPINION - "On January 1, 2029, the City Council will be given the legal right to vote on whether to maintain the airport or demolish it. There will be no middle ground. Currently, the City’s staff is in the process of evaluating the qualifications of consultants to identify and propose the best uses for the land, which should include maintaining it as an airport. As I indicated in a Planning Commission meeting where the process was being discussed, the choice of consultants can often predetermine the results. If you hire a firm that specializes in park design to do the evaluation, you are likely to see a recommendation for a park. - We must think of the future beyond 2028..." Complete Article Here.
07/10/2023 Spot-welded V-band Couplings Cause Accidents; FAA Final Rule issued - Notice Number: NOTC3081 - On June 12, 2023, the FAA published an Airworthiness Directive (AD) 2023-09-09 for turbocharged, reciprocating engine-powered airplanes and helicopters and turbocharged, reciprocating engines with a spot-welded, multi-segment v-band coupling installed at the tailpipe to the turbocharger exhaust housing flange. This AD only applies to spot-welded, multi-segment v-band couplings installed at the tailpipe to the turbocharger exhaust housing flange (it does not apply to riveted couplings). This AD establishes a 500 hour life limit of the v-band coupling and requires repetitive inspections. The AD contains an optional inspection in paragraph (i)(2) for only the first 2 years after AD publication so owners/operators can re-use their v-band couplings if they pass the AD required inspections, even if the v-band couplings have reached 500 flight hours.
You may view a photo of the affected clamp at: https://www.faasafety.gov/files/notices/2023/Jul/Exhaust_Clamp.pdf
You may view the Final Rule at: https://www.regulations.gov/document/FAA-2022-0891-0041.
07/10/2023 ALL HOPE IS NOT LOST - AMENDING THE MEDICAL CERTIFICATE APPLICATION - From AOPA - "Intentional falsification is a serious FAA allegation that can result in immediate revocation of all airman certificates and, in some cases, referral to the Department of Justice for consideration of criminal prosecution." Story Here.
07/07/2023 Question: Does an automated surface observation system (ASOS) have a built-in lightning detection system? Without an observer, how does it know to add a thunderstorm (TS), thunderstorms in the vicinity (VCTS), or tell you about lightning in the distance? - Answer: Some ASOS sites do have a single-site lightning sensor in the array. If there isn’t a lightning sensor at the site, it is still..." Get the inside data Here.
07/07/2023 Vietnam Helicopter Pilots Association meets in San Antonio - Story and VIDEO - From KSAT-TV - "‘The average age of our group is now 80 years old, so we’re pleased that we still have this degree of participation." - "...many pilots who flew dangerous missions together, facing enemy fire, and supporting ground troops with airstrikes." See the feature Here.
07/07/2023 FAA SAFETY BRIEFING - "The July/August 2023 issue of FAA Safety Briefing magazine focuses on flying companions. - Building on our previous companion-based editions, this issue is designed for the friends and loved ones who join us in the air or might have an interest in doing so. Feature articles help regular or prospective passengers gain a better understanding of general aviation and offer tips, techniques, and resources to take a more active role during flight." - Download the Magazine Here.
07/06/2023 5G Concerns Fizzle With Uneventful July 1 Power Boost - From AVweb - "Northrop Grumman says it’s successfully flight tested a jam-proof navigation system to replace the current gear on military aircraft. Embedded Global Positioning System (GPS) / Inertial Navigation System (INS) Modernization, known as EGI-M, was installed on a Cessna Citation and put through its paces in May. The core of the system is something called an M-Code capable GPS receiver that can “quickly transmit positioning, navigation and timing information” in “GPS-contested and GPS-denied environments.” Complete Article Here.
07/06/2023 5G Concerns Fizzle With Uneventful July 1 Power Boost - From AVweb - "It would appear concerns over 5G interference with radio altimeters have faded away. The deadline for telecom providers to crank up the power on 5G antennas near airports came and went on July 1 and the widespread disruptions and cancellations forecast by some did not appear to materialize. Only Delta responded to lightreading.com when asked for comment on the deadline. “We expect minimal operational impact,” the airline said in an email response. At the request of the FAA, telecoms agreed to reduce power from 5G transmitters near airports until July 1 to allow time for 5G retrofits or replacements." More Here
07/06/2023 Microlearning for Aviation Medical Examiners - In this microlearning lesson, Warren Silberman, DO, MPH outlines expansion of the FAAs SSRI medical certification special issuance program to include an NDRI medication. (Run time: 1:43) - View it Here.
07/06/2023 Fighting Flutter - From Aviation Safety Magazine - "You're descending at a relatively high speed in calm air and, since there was no forecast for and little chance of turbulence, you let the airspeed climb into the yellow arc. Then you hear a buzzing noise. You might think that one or more fasteners have come loose, perhaps on the cowling-or you might imagine a bee, wasp or some other stowaway insect as the source. One thing is for sure; the sound you hear probably isn't a stuck microphone. So what's going on? Well, you had better slow down, because that buzz you hear could be your ailerons about to go..." Full Story Here.
07/03/2023 WHAT’S UP? CALIFORNIA LEAST TERN NESTING (APRIL 1 THROUGH AUGUST 31, '23) - IT'S "CARBURETOR ICE" WEATHER! - FAA RELEASES CONCEPT OPERATIONS FOR AAM - ALL TOPICS DISCUSSED IN THE LONG BEACH FLYING CLUB & FLIGHT ACADEMY June 2023 NEWSLETTER - You Can Read it HERE.
07/03/2023 Multi-Regional TBO - About TBO and MR TBO - From FAA - The National Airspace System and global air traffic management (ATM) are evolving to Trajectory Based Operations (TBO). TBO is an ATM initiative that enhances strategic planning through the use, sharing, and management of aircraft trajectory. The increased information availability, especially under changing conditions, supports airspace users in choosing the best actions to meet their individual mission objectives, priorities, or both from origin to destination airports. FAA Information Page Here and FAA TBO Video Here.
07/01/2023 Alef Aeronautics’ Flying Car Design Awarded FAA Special Airworthiness Approval - From Flying - "The startup’s OK to fly under experimental status will enable flight testing of its car-eVTOL hybrid, the Model A. - An electric flying car design, capable of driving on roads like an automobile or taking off and flying like a vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) aircraft, just received the all clear to fly under experimental status from the FAA." Complete Story Here.
07/01/2023 Why Do Runways Get Renumbered? - From Flying - "Every five years, such decisions are based on how much the Earth’s magnetic field changes." Full Story Here.
06/30/2023 Nationwide 5G Helicopter Restrictions Begin June 30 in U.S. - From AINonline - "Helicopter operations in the U.S. fall under new FAA 5G restrictions as detailed in airworthiness directive (AD) 2023-11-07, effective June 30. The date of the restrictions reflects that on or after July 1 up to 21 wireless companies are expected to “power up” their 5G C-band cellphone network transmitters.
Restrictions had been previously in place via an ever-expanding list of notams only in areas of proven 5G C-band interference with radio altimeters (radalts) and via an earlier AD, 2021-23-13, which the new AD supersedes. Under the new AD, operators must replace legacy radalts with..." Full Story Here.
06/28/2023 GIS system helps plot air taxi vertiports - From AOPA - "Using a newly developed geographic information system, researchers at San Jose State University's Mineta Transportation Institute hope to help cities identify the best electric air taxi hub spots that will accommodate boarding, maintenance, charging, takeoff and landing space. The system takes into account factors such as safety, access and equity for city leaders to consider as they plot development and amend zoning laws to accommodate the vertiports. - Full Story:Route Fifty
06/26/2023 NEW Glider Distance Record Set & Description - From The Record -Courrier - Story Here
06/26/2023 NEW - UPDATED NON-TOWERED AC - From FAA - Updated Straight-in Approach guidance 6/6/23 - Read it Here.
06/24/2023 Getting Blown Away - From AVweb - "Wind events resulting from unusual weather patterns demand our attention, if for no other reason than they're likely to become more frequent. - A major wind event can occur at ground level and aloft, probably blowing in different directions—thanks at least in part to the Coriolis effect—with shear zones between abrupt wind direction changes. But even if the forecast or weather report doesn’t explicitly advertise windshear, count on encountering it in a windstorm.
The worst place to encounter windshear is near the runway. On an approach during a wind event, one sign you might be in for low-level windshear is when your crab angle on final approach is exaggerated or perhaps out of sync with the reported surface wind. Glass cockpits or your trusty EFB may display in real time the winds you are experiencing. When your reported or calculated wind direction is significantly different from the reported wind speed and direction on the ground, plan on encountering some windshear." Good Stuff to know. Read it Here.
06/24/2023 FAA Mandates Monthly Refreshers For Controllers - From AVweb - "All air traffic controllers will attend monthly retraining sessions in response to a spate of potentially serious runway incidents that occurred in the winter and early spring. The FAA announced the Stand Up For Safety program on Wednesday and said it was developed in conjunction with the National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA). “To reach our goal of zero close calls, everyone must stay sharp,” said Tim Arel, the FAA’s Air Traffic Organization chief operating officer. “This training will give us an opportunity to focus on safety with our entire workforce.” More Here.
06/24/2023 Inoperative Equipment - From Aviation Safety Magazine - "If somethings not working during the preflight inspection, you may still be able to fly. It depends on what broke and the flight conditions. - The aircraft’s equipment list will list all the factory-approved required, standard and optional components available when it was manufactured. Some means will be included to denote whether certain equipment is required or optional. An example of required equipment might be an oil pressure gauge; a navigation light usually isn’t required for daytime VFR. If the failed equipment is required, you’re grounded until repairs can be made. It’s that simple. - On the other hand, if the equipment is optional, or not required for the anticipated flight conditions, box 2, you still may be good to go." Continue reading Here.
06/24/2023 Archer plots a data-driven approach to flight safety, from the C-suite to the cockpit - From Vertical - "In his new role, Nolen is tasked with developing an operationally-pristine safety management system (SMS) for the Archer Midnight aircraft, and also with building public trust in a space where the logistics of AAM may still seem like science fiction to some travelers. - “We recognize the public will absolutely require that it is safe,” Nolen said. “If that case has not been made, then we’re lost before we even get off the ground. There’s already a very strong..." More Here.
06/24/2023 Study Highlights Growing Confidence in Digital Twin Technology - From Avionics International - "The aerospace and defense industry is constantly investing in new designs and concepts to improve aircraft efficiency and capabilities and support technological infrastructure. Despite its consistent innovation, this sector is notorious for being responsible for large amounts of carbon emissions in the atmosphere, making the testing and introduction of cleaner technology important to both the industry and the world. A new study from Capgemini has shown that aerospace and defense firms have..." Finish Reading Here.
06/24/2023 FAA Investing $100M in Bid to Curb Runway Incursions - From 5/23 Flying - "The grant money will go to a dozen airports with risk factors that contribute to incidents." Includes some for CA. More details Here.
06/21/2023 Situational Awareness Is Key Inside, Outside the Cockpit - From Flying -"A certified flight instructor offers tips for staying ahead of the aircraft.- As we flew away from the airport, we continued to listen. The airport had three Part 141 flight schools and accommodated lots of business jets. The pattern was full, I explained." Read the Story Here.
06/21/2023 VFR CHARTING CHANGES FOR WIND TURBINES COMING SOON - From AOPA - "The FAA is implementing changes to make wind turbine farms more visible on VFR sectionals, VFR terminal charts, and helicopter route charts—to go into effect on or around August 10. - These changes are driven by a significant increase in wind turbine construction as well as a notable increase in average wind turbine height." More Info Here.
06/19/2023 NEW! - FAA Aeronautical Chart Users' Guide for U.S. Federal Aviation Administration. This information has recently been updated, and is now available. You can use this link: https://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/flight_info/aeronav/digital_products/aero_guide/
06/19/2023 Am I Ready For This? - From Aviation Safety Magazine - "Without someone else to bounce ideas and questions off, single-pilot IFR demands we ask ourselves if we're making sound decisions. Here are some of those questions. - We all saw the recent image of a Mooney 201 suspended 100 feet above the ground and tangled in an electrical transmission tower on a dark and gloomy night. Without knowing the details, we all probably asked ourselves, “How did that happen?” The NTSB’s preliminary report on this accident is out, and tells us that, as with almost any accident, there was a long chain of events leading up to the Mooney becoming ensnared in the power lines.
We’ve included some excerpts from the preliminary report in the sidebar on page 10. You can read the full document by searching for the report identifier ERA23LA071 on the safety board’s web site, www.ntsb.gov. Bear in mind that this report is subject to correction and addition of new details as the NTSB investigation unfolds and a probable cause is determined. Still, it prompts us to ask: Was the pilot ready for this?" Read the Story Here.
06/19/2023 FAA Proposes Pilot Training Requirements and Operational Rules for Powered-Lift Aircraft - The FAA took another key step toward safely enabling advanced air mobility by proposing a comprehensive rule for training and certifying pilots.
New rules are necessary because many of the proposed aircraft take off and land like a helicopter, but fly enroute like an airplane. The powered-lift proposed rule is designed to provide certainty to pilots and the industry on what the requirements and expectations will be to operate these aircraft once it is finalized. Under the proposed rule:
- A clear pathway is proposed for pilots to earn powered-lift ratings specific to each type of aircraft they fly.
- Pilots who work for powered-lift aircraft manufacturers could serve as the initial cadre of flight instructors, who could then train instructors at flight schools, training centers and air carriers.
- To safely accelerate pilot certification, alternate eligibility criteria would enable certain pilots to meet flight-time experience requirements faster. This would apply to pilots who already hold a commercial pilot certificate and are instrument rated.
- Powered-lift aircraft would follow the same set of operating rules as traditional aircraft that are used in private and commercial flights and air tours.
The proposal would conform to International Civil Aviation Organization (IACO) requirements, enabling U.S. pilots to operate in other countries. www.federalregister.gov/d/2023-11497.Individuals can comment on the proposed rule from June 14-August 14, 2023 in the Federal Register
What is a Verbal Authorization and How Does it Work? - In the latest episode of the Pilot Minute video series, Federal Air Surgeon Dr. Susan Northrup explains when and how your AME can request a verbal authorization from the FAA when pilots have an urgent need for a medical certificate. See the video here: youtu.be/q4ZiT5qOnh4.
Be sure to check out the entire Pilot Minute playlist (www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL5vHkqHi51DQvRjGJo1SuXyZpKl5HbzOI) for other practical and relevant information including expediting your medical certification, aeromedical physiology, and recent advances and hot topics to help you partner with the FAA for safety and health.
All Systems Nose to Tail – Ensuring Safety at Commercial Space Launches - You hear about it on the news more and more frequently — the commercial space industry has been cleared for liftoff thanks to new operators, new launch vehicles, new launch sites, and new commercial technologies. Most people think of NASA when it comes to space, but did you know that the FAA has authority over all the U.S commercial launches? Go behind the scenes with the FAA men and women that maintain safety during commercial space operations in the article “All Systems Nose to Tail” at https://medium.com/faa/all-systems-nose-to-tail-154b51536b5c.
For more on the FAA’s leading role in advancing commercial space transportation, see the May/June 2023 commercial space-themed issue of FAA Safety Briefing at www.faa.gov/newsroom/faa-safety-briefing-magazine.
06/19/2023 Regulatory Roadblock Reduction - FAA - An important component of reducing general aviation (GA) accidents is leveraging the rapid growth and evolution of technology in the aviation industry. The General Aviation Joint Steering Committee (GAJSC) believes that the FAA must continue to find ways to help reduce the cost to install safety enhancing technology. Installation of this technology can offer substantial safety benefits, often with minimal risk. The GAJSC also feels that the FAA needs to identify the appropriate level of certification for installation of risk-mitigating avionics. Successful integration of this technology may help the GA fleet reap the potential benefit of reward with a balanced risk approach. Read the Blog HERE.
06/14/2023 ARIZONA FLYERS ALERT: Picacho ARNG Workgroup (Jim Timm, Howard Deevers, Cary Grant, Lee Unger) https://skyvector.com/?ll=32.61312288999675,-111.345030314623&chart=301&zoom=2 - Picacho ARNG (KPCA) and its lack of a full-fledged air traffic control tower (ATCT) with associated Class D airspace is a safety concern. As some understand it, this airport does not have Class D because the required climatic information equipment is not on the field nor is such equipment within allowed proximity, Pinal is close but not close enough to qualify.
Picacho must build a case demonstrating why we need Class D. Recommendations include:Enforce FAR Part 91.126d (Operating on or in the vicinity of an airport in Class G airspace) to the best of your ability and report these incidents. This will build your case.
- Work with the FSDO office to reach out to all the encroaching operators and try to work things out. Document the discussions with them and the FSDO. If the FSDO cannot resolve the problem, then perhaps the FSDO can start a local SRM panel with all of them to identify unacceptable risks and determine appropriate mitigations/solutions. This could result in a recommendation for Class D airspace or something else.
- Reinstate the Sectional Chart warning that was discontinued back in 2020.
- Continue to obtain the weather observation and reporting requirements per FAAO JO 7400.2 section 17-2-10: either a federally certified weather observer or a federally commissioned automated weather observing system.
- Exhaust all other actions taken and document the action/result.
Our team at Picacho has begun implementing tracking of incidents in order to establish a case, while also still seeking to obtain the weather station capability.
06/12/2023 Air Force Demonstrates New Magnetic Navigation System - From Flying - "The MagNav prototype used artificial intelligence and machine learning as a GPS backup in a C-17 demonstration. - Air Force officials said the Department of the Air Force-Massachusetts Institute of Technology Artificial Intelligence Accelerator, or AIA, recently performed real-time magnetic navigation in flight using a C-17A Globemaster III aircraft. - The event marked the first successful demonstration of the technology known as MagNav on a Department of Defense aircraft, the Air Force said. The technology is meant as a backup in case GPS navigation is disrupted by jamming or other countermeasures." Read More.
06/12/2023 Night Flight Challenges Reflected in Data, Says Air Safety Institute - From Flying - "A new report analyzing night flight accidents identifies the top four causal factors. - The laws of physics do not change when the sun goes down, therefore, the aircraft flies the same at night as it does during the day—it is the pilot that behaves differently. And sometimes, this leads to accidents. - Recognizing that the cloak of night influences the outcome of accidents, the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) Air Safety Institute (ASI) is offering new analysis..." Learn about this Here.
06/09/2023 Learning To Fly in Smoke and Haze - FLIGHT SAFETY - More great Info from Flying - "If there are fires in Canada and the winds from the north, we will get the smoke. If there are fires in California or Oregon and the winds are from the south, we will get the smoke. And, just to be festive, if there are fires in Montana, Idaho, or eastern Washington and we get some of those rare gnarly winds from the east, we are going to have a smoke event." From Meg Godlewski - Read it Here.
06/09/2023 View publications and articles about human fatigue, shift work, maintenance personnel fatigue, and fatigue risk management. - PDF. File Collection - FAA - The first very detailed report on the page is entitled, "Fatigue Countermeasures in Aviation." - This position paper reviews the relevant scientific literature, summarizes applicable U.S. civilian and military flight regulations, evaluates various in-flight and pre-/post-flight fatigue countermeasures, and describes emerging technologies for detecting and countering fatigue. Following the discussion of each major issue, position statements address ways to deal with fatigue in specific contexts with the goal of using current scientific knowledge to update policy and provide tools and techniques for improving air safety. - THIS is a Valuable Source of Report Data! Visit it Here.
06/07/2023 Top Ten Tips For Managing Risk - FLIGHT SAFETY - From Aviation Safety - "Everyone talks about the weather but no one ever does anything about it.” (Stop me if you’ve heard that before.) The same could be said about managing the risk of general aviation. We—both this magazine and the industry as a whole—spend a lot of time preaching to pilots about the mechanics of understanding weather forecasts, determining if the aircraft is capable, and making honest evaluations of our own performance in considering how and when to conduct a flight. But once we identify the need to mitigate a risk, we sometimes have little space left over to describe the tools we can use. Let’s try to fix that." Continue.
06/07/2023 The Myths of Ditching - Flight Safety - From AVweb - "Contrary to what you may have heard, the best emergency landing site may be the water. - If you fly much over the water – even over wide bays and rivers – you've had to quell the uneasiness that arises when the engine goes into auto rough mode the instant you're beyond gliding range of shore. Not to worry; it's not just you." A Must Read - View it Here.
06/07/2023 NBAA Asks House Committee To Revamp Charter Pilot Rest Rules - NBAA - "In a recent letter, NBAA asked the U.S. House of Representatives Transportation & Infrastructure Committee and Aviation Subcommittee chairs to consider revising Part 135 rest and duty requirements as lawmakers consider FAA reauthorization. - “Preventing a"nd mitigating fatigue remains a universal area of concern,” NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen wrote, calling attention to the recommendations of the Part 135 Pilot Rest and Duty Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC) report presented to the FAA on July 2, 2021." Continue Here.
06/07/2023 June 2023 edition of the FAS Medical Bulletin! - FAA - "The Office of Aerospace Medicine has been busy this winter and spring. As you will see in this edition, we rolled out the ability for AMEs to directly upload documentation into our system (up to 25 documents with a maximum size of 3MB per exam). This combined with pilots being able to see where their application is in the system through MedXpress and what documents (by general title) we have, or letters we have sent, is a real game changer." Many, Many, More features included. Read it Here.
06/07/2023 Basic Med Three Year Report Card Has It Worked? - From AVweb - "Basic Med went into effect in May 2017 with high hopes. A recent FAA analysis of the program reveals that some 40,000 pilots have taken advantage of it. But the report also shows..." Continue Here.
06/06/2023 Five Ways Drone Technology is Improving - From The American Society of Mechanical Engineers - "Drone improvements include advances in autonomous flight, composite materials, next-generation batteries, extended flight times, and payload capacities. - Unmanned aerial vehicles—or drones—are pushing boundaries everywhere from construction sites to combat. The global commercial drone market was valued at about $8 billion in 2022, and is projected to reach $47 billion by 2030. This growth reflects the rapid..." Continual Here.
06/06/2023 Paul BERTORELLI on FLIGHT NEAR PARACHUTE OPS. This is a MUST-SEE VIDEO. See it HERE.
05/29/2023 You (Probably) Have What It Takes To Be a Drone Pilot - Here’s your guide to FAA Part 107 certification—and what you can do with it. - From Flying - "So, you want to fly a drone? You’re not alone—every month, thousands of people in search of employment or a side hustle apply for Part 107 remote pilot certification from the FAA. - To be clear, you don’t need FAA approval to fly a drone recreationally, so long as you stick to the agency’s guidelines for recreational fliers and community-based organizations. But to start a career as a commercial drone pilot or operator, you’ll need to check a few boxes first. - Luckily, the process is fairly straightforward. According to the FAA, some 4,500 people apply for Part 107 certification each month, but only about 0.7 percent are rejected. Still, there are a few things you need to know..." Read More Here.
05/29/2023 FAA Releases BVLOS Waiver Requests for Public Comment - AAM NEWS - Phoenix Air Unmanned, uAvionix, Zipline, and UPS Flight Forward are seeking relief from FAA restrictions. - "Earlier this week, the FAA announced it’s eyeing beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) exemption approvals for four top aviation firms, opening the door to expanded unmanned operations. Now we know exactly what permissions they’re asking for.
On Thursday, the FAA published the requests of the four companies—Phoenix Air Unmanned, uAvionix, UPS Flight Forward, and Zipline—and is seeking comments from the public. Stakeholders have until June 14 to share..." Continue.
05/27/2023 BIG BEAR - BONANZA - 3 FATALS - Reprinted from "Long Beach Flying Club & Flight Academy" May Newsletter - "BIG BEAR AIRPORT NEWS Submitted by BOB HARTUNIAN, BIG BEAR-BASED PILOT/CORRESPONDENT - As you may know, we had a fatal crash here in Big Bear on May 1. Although NTSB is still investigating, some local pilots have found flight data on the plane, a Bonanza from Temecula with 3 aboard. The plane was flying abnormally, flying in the downwind here at 200 kts and 9100', where normal for that plane would be 100 kts at 8000'. Why the pilot was going so fast and high is unknown. To get down, he was descending at 1500 fpm, where normal rate is 500 fpm. Being a flatlander, it is assumed he used full rich mixture and pulled power which will cause the engine to sputter and quit. The result was a stall/spin scenario because his last speed recorded was 68 kts before crashing. All this is speculation but probable. Just too bad that ignorance about flying here resulted in the loss of lives. - You can read the full newsletter HERE.
05/25/2023 Safety 1st Alert: Critical Issue – DEF Contamination Event - NEWS / SAFETY - From NATA - "Last month, another incident of Diesel Exhaust Fluid (DEF) contaminating jet fuel occurred at an FBO in the Southwest United States reminding us of the importance of diligence and training in mitigating this very real threat. In this latest report, the affected aircraft lost both engines before making a dead-stick landing approximately 280 miles away. Even though no injuries were reported, the risks for more catastrophic results remain high. Since 2017, the 5 reported incidents of DEF contamination of jet fuel have resulted in..." Continue.
05/24/2023 ASAG MAY 17, 2023 MEETING MINUTES - These are VERY, VERY Useful! - These minutes reveal the Pilot Deviation Details as they currently exist - and maybe how you can avoid them. - View Them Here.
05/22/2023 The $300 Annual - The General Aviation Joint Safety Committee (GAJSC) (www.gajsc.org) states that inadequate maintenance and inspections are common factors that can cause general aviation accidents. Aircraft owners should be wary of seeking bargain-priced mechanical services that are often too good to be true and instead seek qualified aircraft mechanics who emphasize quality and detail during an inspection. Read about our latest Fly Safe topic here https://medium.com/faa/beware-of-bargain-priced-aircraft-maintenance-services-f95004a5253c.
05/22/2023 FAA Activates Online Aircraft Registrations For Individual Owners - FAA NEWS - From AVweb - "The FAA has implemented the first phase of online aircraft registration and it will apply to the most common transactions for most GA owners and operators. “Individual aircraft owners can complete self-guided aircraft registration applications, upload legal and supplemental documents, receive auto-generated notifications, request aircraft registration N-numbers, use..." More.
05/20/2023 Why Do Helicopter Pilots Sit on the Right Side of the Cockpit? - From Flying - Find Out Here.
05/20/2023 Your role in Ensuring Safety during space launch and reentry operations. Understanding what Aircraft Hazard Areas (AHA) are and how to avoid them is an important part of that effort. - From FAA - The commercial space industry is on the rise. In just the last 12 years, we’ve seen the cadence of U.S. commercial space launch and reentry operations grow from about three licensed operations a year to approximately two per week. As this industry has grown, the FAA has developed a safe operating infrastructure that ensures the safety of the public, and all National Airspace System (NAS) users, including general aviation.
As a GA pilot, there are some key terms and concepts that can be helpful to know when operating near areas with launch and reentry activity. A good starting point is a familiarity with 14 CFR section 91.143, Flight limitation in the proximity of space flight operations. It states:
When a Notice to Air Mission (NOTAM) is issued in accordance with this section, no person may operate any aircraft of U.S. registry, or pilot any aircraft under the authority of an airman certificate issued by the FAA, within areas designated in a NOTAM for space flight operation except when authorized by [air traffic control (ATC)].
Another important safety element is the use of aircraft hazard areas (AHAs) as noted in 14 CFR part 450, Launch and Reentry License Requirements. These are areas of airspace that are blocked off to provide protection to aircraft from launch and reentry space operations. Here’s how the AHA is defined in the Pilot/Controller Glossary:
Used by air traffic control to segregate air traffic from a launch vehicle, reentry vehicle, amateur rocket, jettisoned stages, hardware, or falling debris generated by failures associated with any of these activities. An AHA is designated via NOTAM as either a TFR or stationary altitude reservation (ALTRV). Unless otherwise specified, the vertical limits of an AHA are from the surface to unlimited.
For GA pilots, the accompanying TFRs and restricted areas are what you’ll most likely see graphically depicted on a flight planning chart before a launch. But you may also see the ALTRV areas depicted in certain flight planning apps or the term included in the NOTAM associated with the launch. The ALTRV protects the airspace under the projected launch area and debris fields, often further away from the launch sites.
Being in the wrong place at the wrong time during a launch can present a serious danger to not only the aircraft operator, but also to the personnel involved with the launch. There are also significant cost issues with scrubbing the launch, as well as having to reschedule the launch and the accompanying AHA.
Using a multi-faceted approach, the FAA has made great strides in assuring safety and improving the efficiency around airspace closures for commercial space launches and reentries. The agency has cut the time for airspace closures from four hours down to two hours, and sometimes as little as 30 minutes. But maintaining this trajectory of safety and efficiency is a collective effort. So how can GA pilots be a part of the safety equation when it comes to commercial space activity? Here are a few tips:
- Get familiar with the area you’re flying in to see if there’s a potential for space operations.
- Perform some additional preflight planning including checking NOTAMs and your flight planning tool of choice for any future launch/reentry activity.
- If possible, request Flight Following from ATC.
05/20/2023 Gyro Failures - FLIGHT SAFETY - From Aviation Safety Magazine - "There can be several causes, but only one real choice in IMC: Deploy your backup strategies and divert to the nearest glide slope. You do have backup strategies, right? - Eventually, my instructor covered the instruments one by one while I was doing maneuvers, and lo and behold, everything improved! Not only was using the attitude indicator not required, in many ways it was less precise than proper visual flying. - Start your instrument training, and suddenly..." Read More Here.
05/20/2023 Wildfire fighting system celebrates 50 years - FIRE FIGHTING NEWS - From VC Reporter - "It’s been 50 years since the first deployment of an innovative wildfire fighting system used in conjunction by the U.S. Forest Service and the U.S. Air Force. Modular Airborne Firefighting Systems, or MAFFS, are devices that slide in and out of military aircraft, such as the C-130 Hercules based at the Channel Islands Air National Guard Station near Point Mugu.
MAFFS are capable of dropping up to 3,000 gallons of fire retardant in less than 10 seconds to help stop the spread of wildfires and assist firefighters on the ground, officials said. Aircraft deployed with MAFFS are..." More on this Topic Here.
05/17/2023 US Regulations Seek To Expand AAM, Restrict Drones - From Flying - Here’s a breakdown of key drone, UAS, and AAM regulations from the past month. Read it Here.
05/15/2023 AOPA HELPS STRIKE DOWN PROPOSED AVIATION FUEL BANS - NEWS - From AOPA - "AOPA, along with several state aviation-related associations, defeated two specific attempts by New Mexico and Washington state to prohibit the distribution and sale of leaded aviation fuel." More Here.
05/15/2023 Here Be Dragons - FLIGHT SAFETY - From AVweb - "Just as ancient mapmakers tried to do for their sailors, NTSB statistics can show us what to avoid on our quest toward preventing accidents. - ...just as ancient mapmakers tried to do for their sailors, NTSB statistics can show us what to avoid on our quest toward preventing accidents. " Learn what the statistics tell us, and how to not be one of them HERE.
05/11/2023 FAA Easing Aeromedical Rules for Mental Health Issues - NEWS - From AINonline - "The FAA is revising its certification procedures and rules to make it easier for pilots grounded by mental health issues to regain their licenses and encourage those needing help to get it, federal air surgeon Dr. Susan Northrup said yesterday at the Business Aviation Safety Summit in New Orleans. Currently, 30 to 40 percent of applications reviewed by the medical division “have a mental health component,” Northrup said, yet only between 0.1 and 0.2 percent are..." Read More Here.
05/08/2023 Is the Shift in Tornado Alley Related to Climate Change? - WX NEWS - From Flying - "From year to year there may be a stark contrast in where severe weather strikes, especially thunderstorms that produce tornadoes. - That is, there may be two or three years in a row where significant tornado events are focused more in Tornado Alley and other years where they are focused in the Ozarks, mid-South, and Tennessee Valley. This year-to-year variation happens for a variety of reasons, but..." Important Wx Data - Continue Here.
05/08/2023 Pass rates on pilot practical tests trend down - NEWS - From General Aviation News - "The pass rates on practical tests for the initial issuing of pilot certificates, specifically private pilot, commercial pilot, and flight instructor certificates, went down in 2022 for the first time in the past few years. And it went down on all three certificates, noted officials with the Flight School Association of North America. - “Many in the training industry have felt over the past few months that the passing rate was declining, and now that we have the 2022 US Civil Airman Statistics, we can put data to that feeling,” officials said in a recent..." Continue This Important Topic Here,
05/08/2023 AFFORDABLE INSULIN, TRAFFIC IN SIGHT - From AOPA - "Many of my insulin-dependent diabetic pilot friends and relatives received an early Christmas gift on March 1, 2023. The price of insulin dropped like a Piper Warrior on the final approach after taking out power. I aim to find ways pilots can continue to fly without paying too much money for their chronic prescriptions. - Diabetic patients, due to uncontrolled glucose, run the risk of nephropathy, neuropathy, and retinopathy. Nephropathy is kidney failure, which, if not stopped, may lead to the patient needing hemodialysis. Hemodialysis is necessary to rid the blood of toxins that accumulate due to little or no kidney function. Neuropathy is nerve damage outside of the brain and spinal cord. People with diabetes will not feel pain in.." Read More Here.
05/08/2023 FAA REPORTS LOW ATTRITION FOLLOWING PSI FEE CHANGES - TEST AVAILABILITY MAINTAINED, AGENCY SAYS - From AOPA - "The FAA responded just over a month after AOPA joined other industry advocates asking the agency to intervene to stem the loss of testing centers now being reimbursed at lower rates by PSI, the sole contractor. The FAA advised that the actual reduction in test availability to date has been less than the typical attrition rate. - PSI updated its reimbursement structure in January to reduce rates paid to flight schools and other businesses that host FAA knowledge tests. The change provoked concern..." More Here.
05/05/2023 FCC Steps Up Spectrum Rulemaking for UAS - From Inside Unmanned Systems Online "In early February, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) took a big step forward in opening new spectrum for unmanned aircraft operations, publishing a notice of proposed rulemaking in the Federal Register. - The rulemaking focuses on the 5030-5091 MHz band. Earlier proposals would..." Continue Here.
05/05/2023 Flying taxis are coming. Cities will need dozens of vertiports. - "As flying taxis steadily move from "if" status to "when," some have wondered where the necessary vertiports will go. A McKinsey report suggests that a busy, high-income city like London or New York might need up to 30 vertiport sites, with a midsize city such as Dallas getting by with between 10 and 18. - Full Story: HERE.
05/05/2023 Best Glide Speed - The General Aviation Joint Safety Committee (GAJSC) (www.gajsc.org) has determined that a significant number of GA fatalities could be avoided if pilots were better informed and trained to determine and fly their aircraft at the best glide speed while maneuvering to complete a forced landing. Determining the best glide speed for your aircraft depends on a number of factors. Read about our latest Fly Safe topic here https://medium.com/faa/best-glide-speed-eb89693edaa0.
05/05/2023 First Responder Training Courses - The FAA is reaching out to communities small and large across the United States to train their EMTs, firefighters, and other first responders about how to address aircraft accidents on and off airports. Learn more in the article “Hitting Home Runs with First Responder Training Courses” at http://bit.ly/3yEk9Cn.
05/03/2023 FAA Releases Airspace Blueprint for Air Taxis - WASHINGTON —The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) released an updated blueprint for airspace and procedure changes to accommodate future air taxis and other Advanced Air Mobility (AAM) operations. - Under the blueprint, AAM operations will begin at a low rate with air taxis flying much as helicopters do today. They’ll use existing routes and infrastructure such as helipads and early vertiports. Pilots will communicate with air traffic controllers where required.
As the number of operations increases, air taxis are expected to fly in corridors between major airports and vertiports in city centers. The complexity of the corridors could increase over time from single one-way paths to routes serving multiple flows of aircraft flying in both directions. Over time, these corridors could link an increasing number of routes between vertiports. - The FAA expects aircraft technology will evolve as well. Aircraft automation and real-time data sharing between aircraft will likely play increasing roles in these corridors.
The operational blueprint is a key step — along with certifying the aircraft and pilots — in the FAA’s effort to safely usher in and support this next era of aviation. The blueprint aims to provide a common frame of reference to the FAA, NASA and industry to help guide their research and decision-making. - The FAA developed the blueprint with NASA and industry stakeholders
05/02/2023 GOES Satellite Imagery - WEATHER EDUCATION - From AVweb - "You’ve probably heard someone tossing around the term “GOES satellite” at one time or another. This refers to a NOAA satellite program that has been in operation for 47 years. GOES stands for Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite, in other words, a weather satellite that’s parked 22,236 miles (35,786 km) above the Earth’s surface, directly above the equator. At this altitude the satellite orbital speed perfectly matches the ..." More.
05/02/2023 Why We Say ‘MAYDAY’ - INFO - From Flying - "For pilots, uttering the phrase "MAYDAY" means they're in trouble—but have you ever wondered why?" Continue Here.
04/30/2023 What Does a Pilot Require To Remain Current in an Aircraft Requiring a Type Rating? - The answer to this question can appear to be complicated unless you enjoy reading FAA regulations for amusement. - From Flying - "FAR 61.58 states: “Except as otherwise provided in this section, to serve as pilot in command of an aircraft that is type certificated for more than one required pilot flight crew member or is turbojet powered, a person must—..." Continue Here.
04/29/2023 FAA Establishes Independent Safety Review Panel - The team of aviation stakeholders was formed to make air traffic safety recommendations following a string of close calls. - From Flying - "The FAA named an independent review team to make recommendations on air safety following a string of close calls at U.S. airports, the agency announced Wednesday. The FAA National Airspace System Safety Review Team has been tasked with examining and presenting recommendations for ways the agency can advance air traffic safety, the agency said. The new panel is..." Continue.
04/25/2023 Energy Errors - Failure to manage altitude and airspeed can have a bad outcome. It's all about the airplane's energy state. - FLIGHT EDUCATION - - From AVweb - "The FAA’s Airplane Flying Handbook (AFH, FAA-H-8083-3C) describes energy management as “the process of planning, monitoring, and controlling altitude and airspeed,” which seems straightforward enough. Using the available tools, primarily pitch and power, we’re expected to attain and maintain “desired vertical flightpath-airspeed profiles, detect, correct and prevent “unintentional altitude-airspeed deviations” and prevent “irreversible deceleration and/or sink rate” that can lead to a less-than desirable outcome. - Put another way, managing an airplane’s energy is a key concept..." Read About it Here.
04/24/2023 Flight Plans - INFO - From AVweb - "Flight plans are still the seed from which most of our IFR operations and most of ATC grow. Let's take a look at how they work and add some behind-the-scenes insight. - We all know the bare basics on a flight plan: callsign, type, departure and arrival, altitude, fuel, passengers, etc. These basics are rarely an issue. But I’ve seen pilots have issues with the equipment suffix, route, and (surprise!), proposed departure time. When you file an IFR flight plan, wait for it to be accepted. Whether it’s via your EFB, FSS, or another system, it must be accepted before ATC can access it. If you just push the button and move on, it might not pass the system’s validation tests." More Here.
04/24/2023 Lawsuit Against Port of Seattle Claims Airborne Pollution - AIRPORT NEWS - From Flying - "The class action complaint alleges toxic pollution generated by Sea-Tac air traffic is harming residents’ health and property values. - A Seattle-based law firm representing residents living within five miles of Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (KSEA) has filed a class action complaint alleging toxic pollution generated by air traffic is harming residents’ health and property values. - According to the suit, pollution is “particularly acute” in the King County communities of Sea-Tac, Tukwila, Burien, Des Moines, Normandy Park, and Renton, which it referred to as the “Contamination Zone.” Per the suit, approximately 300,000 people live in the zone, including 60,000 children." More Here.
04/23/2023 The Yellow Arc - From Aviation Safety Magazine - "There is a very real reason for the caution range of the airspeed indicator. A truly fascinating diagram (if you’re into such things) is usually only briefly introduced in pilot ground schools and pops up occasionally in articles such as this. The Vg diagram, “V” for velocity and “g” for g-load or load factor, shows the relationship between an aircraft’s airspeed and the resulting forces from operating at those speeds. An example is..." More Here.
04/23/2023 General Aviation Has a Great Sustainability Story To Tell - From Flying - "At AERO 2023, GAMA and industry leaders explain that the work is getting done right now on an innovative net-zero future. - AERO 2023 launched in Friedrichshafen on April 19 with a focus on sustainable aviation. In fact, we are already doing it, according to key industry leaders from ZeroAvia, Daher, Textron eAviation, Pilatus, and Elixir, at the General Aviation Manufacturers Association’s luncheon. “GA is the solution to this,” said Kyle Martin, GAMA vice president of European affairs. The event focused squarely on illuminating that message so..." Continue.
04/23/2023 No Air Up There - Hypoxia, the medical term for oxygen deficiency, can sneak up on you without warning. Learn how to be aware of the symptoms and what equipment you should have on board your aircraft to mitigate hypoxia at http://bit.ly/3LwaAgt. - Get more tips on handling urgent aeronautical situations in our Mar/Apr 2023 issue, Possible Assistance Needed: www.faa.gov/safety_briefing
04/23/2023 Weather Cameras Now in Maine - The FAA’s Weather Camera Program (weathercams.faa.gov) has expanded to the northeast coast, hosting 18 new camera sites in Maine, with plans to add more sites through 2023. The cameras provide pilots with better weather information, especially in terrain where radar coverage is scarce. Read more about the Maine addition: medium.com/faa/weather-cameras-go-live-in-maine-d41c967a8ef4
The FAA’s Weather Camera Program began in Alaska more than 20 years ago and has expanded to sites in Hawaii and the contiguous United States. The program is also researching technological improvements to introduce 360-degree camera capabilities. Another enhancement available later this year is the new Visibility Estimation through Image Analytics (VEIA) tool that uses existing FAA weather camera infrastructure to provide visibility estimates based on an automated comparison of current conditions to clear day images. Read more about VEIA: medium.com/faa/new-visibility-estimation-tool-coming-soon-4519d575eb32
04/19/2023 FAA Issues New Guidelines For Space Launch Scheduling - NEWS - From AVweb - "The FAA is taking steps to better fit rocket launches into the National Airspace system. The agency announced last week it has come up with guidelines “to optimize and equitably manage the airspace in the vicinity of launch sites.” Airlines and other operators have been grumbling about the diversions and airspace closures that inevitably result from every launch." More Here.
04/17/2023 AOPA SLAMS COUNTY OF SANTA CLARA'S UNSAFE, DISCRIMINATORY FUEL PRACTICES - "AOPA and its co-complainants submitted a scathing response to the California county of Santa Clara amid the ongoing 100LL fuel ban dispute, citing violations of federal rules, delay tactics, and unreliable evidence, as well as accusing the county of overstepping its authority. - The April 7 response, filed in reply to the county’s answer to the Part 16 complaint filed against it, casts doubt on the county’s credibility, citing inconsistent statements from the county and its officials, delayed responses to airport tenants, problematic self-fueling permits, and the county’s deliberate disregard for grant assurance obligations. -
Currently, the county is under obligation by the FAA to provide reasonable access to its Reid-Hillview of Santa Clara County Airport and San Martin Airport until 2031 in exchange for federal funds. Although..." Continue Here.
04/15/2023 Merlin Awarded FAA Contract to Deploy Nation’s First Air Cargo Network Flown by Non-Human Pilot - AAM - From businesswire - "The Merlin Pilot will be the first highly automated flight control system integrated into the National Airspace System (NAS); Fairbanks, Alaska-based flight trials to begin in Q2 2023 - The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has awarded Merlin, the leading developer of safe autonomous flight technology for fixed-wing aircraft, a $1 million contract to demonstrate a highly automated flight control system in conjunction with a safety pilot. In partnership with the FAA designated University of Alaska Fairbanks UAS Test Site and Everts Air Cargo, the Merlin Pilot will be the first autonomy system integrated into the NAS. Flight trials will run along three test routes serving five destinations. All test routes originate from the FAA designated UAS Alaska test site in Q2 2023. - Last year, Merlin announced..." Read the story Here.
04/15/2023 New Parts Program Big Win for Vintage Fleet - From EAA - Thanks to years of EAA’s advocacy efforts, the FAA has unveiled a new program for the use of off-the-shelf parts in type-certificated aircraft. This is the first approval granted under the new Vintage Aircraft Replacement and Modification Article (VARMA) program, the next big step in keeping vintage aircraft flying. - Anyone who owns and operates vintage aircraft knows that finding parts can be a major challenge. This situation is especially frustrating when perfectly safe and functional alternatives are readily available but can’t be used because there’s been no legal way to install them in a type-certificated aircraft.
With VARMA in place, some aspects of vintage aircraft ownership and operation are about to get a lot simpler. - Notably, VARMA uses several existing FAA policies to create a program that requires no new regulations, orders, or advisory circulars. It applies to..." Read the Report Here.
04/14/2023 NATA Adds Drone Manufacturer to Advanced Air Mobility Committee - The Volatus official is the newest member of the group aiming to spur stakeholder cooperation as AAM integrates into the current aviation ecosystem. - From Flying - "The committee’s stated goals are to provide stakeholder input on legislative and regulatory priorities for fixed base operators, airports, and other providers, as well as to foster connections between AAM firms and Part 135 operators." Read More Here.
04/14/2023 Army, Air National Guard Helicopter Accidents a Result of Human Error, GAO Finds - The agency made a list of safety recommendations after studying 298 helicopter accidents from 2012 to 2021. - ACIIDENT REVIEW - From Flying - THE GAO REPORT - "Responding in part to 10 years of data that revealed 298 non-combat helicopter accidents between the Army and U.S. Air Force components of the National Guard, the GAO studied safety practices within the organizations. The agency analyzed accident data from fiscal years 2012 through 2021. The study also included document reviews and interviews with officials from a number of units. - The GAO found that about 45 of the reported accidents in the study were considered serious, meaning that they included fatalities, permanent disability, extensive hospitalization, helicopter destruction or more than $500,000 of property damage. The accidents resulted in the deaths of 28 personnel. - According to GAO data analysis, the accidents were..." Access the description and the full report Here.
04/14/2023 MIT researchers create algorithm to stop drones from colliding midair - AIRSPACE - From ROBOTREPORT - "Robust MADER is able to generate collision-free trajectories for drones even when there is a delay in communications between agents. The system is an asynchronous, decentralized, multiagent trajectory planner, meaning each drone formulates its own trajectory and then checks with drones nearby to ensure it won’t run into any of them. - The drones optimize their new trajectories using an algorithm that..." Continue Here.
04/12/2023 Air Traffic Operations at Reid Hillview Tower Controlled Airport - Notice Number: NOTC2929 - The close spacing of the parallel runways 31L and 31R/13L and 13R and proximity to Capitol Expressway on the East Side make this airport a unique training environment at Reid Hillview Airport.
Following the VGT mid-air collision on July 17, 2022, air traffic has introduced a tighter spacing tolerance at tower-controlled airports with closely spaced parallel runways. This change takes effect on the publication date of this Notice at the Reid Hillview Airport in Santa Clara County. Certificated Flight Instructors are being alerted to the need for tighter training parameters when turning on to final approach to all runways especially one mile or greater distance from the runway threshold.
The hold-short lines between the runways are close but tolerances in the air are closer due to limited reaction time. As the aircraft advances on the approach trajectory, reaction time to correct an error may not be available considering the time to process and readback the instructions.
To avoid potential overshoots on approach, a Flight Instructor must assume the flight controls from her/his flight student by one mile or greater from the runway threshold.
If you perform student pilot training at Reid Hillview Airport, here are some tips to consider when giving training:
- Regardless of where you are on the approach, if you are misaligned with the assigned runway you will be instructed to go-around.
- If inside one mile and you stray from the extended runway centerline air traffic must file a mandatory operating report or if inside half-a-mile it will be treated as a pilot deviation with the accompanying records forwarded to the FSDO
- Make sure you repeat the landing runway ATC assigns to you and adhere to the instructions
- Give yourself some time to prepare your student and explain the reduced tolerances on the ground prior to the flight
- Explain the RHV Arrival Alert Notices to your student for 31R and Taxiway Y and runway 13L and Taxiway Y2 and review the video on the Runway Safety Flight Deck
- Manage distractions – Learn to manage distractions especially within one mile from touchdown. Keep a sterile cockpit on the approach segment and while maneuvering. Make sure the aircraft is stable before copying ATC instructions, reviewing the approach, changing and folding charts. Assign a second pilot to scan for traffic.
- Maintain a listening watch on NorCal TRACON on the second frequency
- Be Alert to Change - Check in with the Tower if you have a tendency to forget the newly assigned runway or as a matter of routine always land on runway 31R and the tower switches you to another runway
- Phraseology to expect: CHANGE TO RUNWAY (number), RUNWAY (number) CLEARED TO LAND. NOTE−
The purpose of the “change to runway” phraseology and restating the runway number is to emphasize to the pilot that they are being cleared to land on a runway other than what they were expecting. FAAO 7110.65 3-10-5
- During Visual Approach, expect runway assignment from the Tower controller not the overlying approach control.
- Evaluate and Update your Personal Minimums
- Make sure you have good VFR weather and visibility when conducting closed pattern operations
- Maintain situational awareness – monitor, evaluate and anticipate what you are doing and where you will be in the approach sequence.
Jonathan Taveras, RHV Air Traffic Manager, 2204 Waverly Ave., San Jose, CA 95122 - (408)272-5917 (work)
04/12/2023 Staying on Top of the Freezing Level - WEATHER INFO - From Flying - "Winter and airframe icing are like peanut butter and jelly; it’s hard to imagine one without the other. - If you plan an altitude where the temperature aloft is zero degrees Celsius or less, airframe icing becomes exceedingly more likely while flying in visible moisture. Therefore, the freezing level is one key variable that you need to determine during your preflight analysis to better quantify your risk of airframe ice. Let’s clarify something right from the beginning. The FAA likes to use the term “freezing level” in all of its documentation. This is kind of a misnomer, given that water in the liquid state doesn’t..." Continue Here.
04/12/2023 Colorado Airport Hopes To Retain Remote Tower Capabilities - NEWS - From AVweb - "According to the Colorado Department of Transportation, it wants to keep the remote-control tower at Loveland’s Northern Colorado Regional Airport (KFNL) open. The agency is hoping the FAA can find a way to coordinate with the system’s equipment designer, Ottawa, Ontario-based Searidge Technologies, to get the tower certified. The FAA said the Searidge system at KFNL is “under evaluation.” - Bill Payne, who is managing the project for the Colorado DOT, said, “We will be..." Continue Here.
04/09/2023 AUTONOMY AT YOUR DOORSTEP - UAM AIRSPACE MGMT.(PR) - From AOPA - "Zipline revealed its new aircraft designed for fast, whisper-quiet, autonomous home delivery to cities and suburbs. - The system utilizes autonomous drones called “Zips” and tethered droids to complete deliveries. The Zips fly at more than 300 feet above ground level to their destinations, then hover and wait while a fully autonomous delivery droid makes its way down a tether to its drop-off location. The company says the system can deliver packages to areas as small as patio tables or front steps of a home thanks to its “major innovations in aircraft and propeller design.” - "Zipline utilizes an acoustic detect-and-avoid system for airborne collision avoidance." Continue Here.
04/08/2023 When The Wind Blows - An experienced pilot can tell a lot by the wind. We’ll share a few tricks to help you read the wind, too. - WEATHER INFO - From AVweb - "There’s no phenomena that shapes the flying experience quite like wind. It’s almost always present in some form. A crosswind makes for tricky landings, a gusty wind brings a bumpy flight, and a strong tailwind buys you an extra 15 minutes at your destination. It makes sense that this temperamental, fickle element should get an entire article of its own in hopes we can understand it a little better. - Where Wind Comes From..." Continue.
04/08/2023 Landing Gear Checks: Hit The Books - The aircraft’s maintenance data is a good source of knowledge when preflighting landing gear systems. - SAFETY TIPS - From AVweb - "As we sift through the NTSB accident reports each month, we’re consistently finding landing gear mishaps that might have been avoided if the pilot spent a little extra time inspecting the gear during the preflight, or simply knew how to recognize potential problem areas before launching. - In this quick-hitter tech article, we’ll look at the things you and your mechanic should be inspecting in hopes that you won’t join the ranks of “those who have” landed gear up." See it Here.
04/08/2023 Following the FAA’s Safety Summit on March 15, the agency issued a Safety Alert for Operators (SAFO 23002) with specific steps it wants airlines, pilots, and others to take. These action items include understanding the importance of sterile cockpit procedures, emphasizing the importance of awareness of the aircraft in relation to taxiways, runways, and other aircraft, and encouraging personnel to identify and report existing and emerging safety issues through voluntary reporting programs.
Pilots and operators should review the listed items and consider taking additional steps to ensure operations are conducted at the highest level of safety, including changes to procedures or training. Download the SAFO at bit.ly/40Iq6KE and see the FAA press release here faa.gov/newsroom/faa-urges-airlines-pilots-and-others-take-key-safety-actions.
04/08/2023 Bird Ingestion Test Rule Stems from ‘Miracle on Hudson’ - NEWS - From AINonline - "A new final rule revising FAR Part 33 bird ingestion certification test requirements ensures that modern-day turbofan engines can ingest the largest medium flocking bird (MFB) into the engine core during climb or approach conditions without an engine failure. The rule traces its roots back to the “Miracle on the Hudson.” - "As a result of the accident, the FAA established an aviation rulemaking advisory committee (ARAC) to review and update bird ingestion standards." The full story Here.
04/06/2023 FAA Steps Into Nashville Airport Governance Battle - NEWS - From AVweb - "The FAA has told Tennessee state legislators to back off plans to take over control of Nashville International Airport’s board of directors until it has had a chance to assess the move. The Republican-controlled state government has drafted legislation to replace the current seven-member board of directors appointed by the mayor with an eight-member board, six of whom are appointed by the state." Continue
04/04/2023 As air taxi routes for Chicago and New York take shape, Congress and the White House weigh in - NEWS - From SmartcitiesDive - "Aiming for commercial eVTOL flights in 2025, developers are advancing plans for aircraft production and certification. - United Airlines and Archer Aviation announced plans last week for commercial eVTOL service between O’Hare International Airport and Vertiport Chicago, a downtown heliport, beginning in 2025. Previously, the two companies had announced plans for an air taxi route between Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey and the Downtown Manhattan Heliport, also slated for a 2025 start. Joby Aviation, which, like Archer, is a California-based eVTOL developer, has inked deals to bring air taxi operations to South Korea and Japan." Continue.
04/03/2023 A Runway Disaster Surface Event Avoided - "Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said in a statement. - Shortly before the FedEx aircraft was due to land, the controller cleared Southwest Flight 708 to depart from the same runway. The FAA said: “The pilot of the FedEx airplane discontinued the landing and initiated a climb out.” - The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said it was “investigating a surface event at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, a possible runway incursion and overflight involving airplanes from Southwest Airlines and FedEx. - Webmaster: The FedEx Pilot executed without emotional - See it on YouTube HERE.
04/02/2023 Biden-Harris Administration Announces $20 Million in Bipartisan Infrastructure Law Funding to Modernize 29 Airport Control Towers Across the U.S. - FAA PR - "WASHINGTON— The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) will award $20 Million from President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to 29 airport owned traffic control towers across the U.S. The funding will be used to upgrade and build control towers in small towns and at regional airports.
This funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law goes to smaller and regional airports to help improve safety, lower costs and support local businesses. The funding will support important aviation operations such as commercial services, emergency services, agricultural aviation, flight training, and shipping of goods.
“Airports aren’t just travel hubs, they are important job centers and economic engines—especially in smaller communities,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg." Webmaster: Unfortunately, San Bernardino International (that needs radar) isn't included. Read about those who are HERE.
04/02/2023 Propeller Theory 101 - "Propeller blades are airfoils, and their angle of attack to the relative wind can be just as critical to efficient operation as the winds they haul aloft." THEORY - From Aviation Safety Magazine - "In analyzing a wing and its performance, there is only one wind direction to think about, the same relative wind that affects the whole aircraft. But a propeller has two relative winds: the aircraft’s relative wind and what you might call the rotational relative wind. What’s that? A propeller-driven airplane sitting on the ramp with the engine running has no relative wind, but the rotating prop is moving a lot of air. That’s the rotational relative wind. ..." Finish Reading Here.
04/02/2023 Enabling the Future of Advanced Air Mobility and Drone Operations in the U.S. - NEWS - From Aviation Today - "A U.S. House hearing held last week on the topic of advanced air mobility featured a discussion of the future of unmanned aircraft systems, or UAS, in the United States. It also served as a legislative hearing for The National Drone and Advanced Air Mobility Act. This is a bill that would enable a coordinated Federal initiative to accelerate civilian UAS operations. The act would also support research and development related to advanced air mobility (AAM)." Read More Here.
04/02/2023 Pilot Groups Unite To Fight Single-Pilot Operations - From AVweb - "“Technology, no matter how sophisticated, is not a replacement for pilots on the flight deck,“ the group said." Read Here.
04/02/2023 FAA Report Says BasicMed Hasn’t Raised Accident Risk - FAA NEWS - From AVweb - "The FAA says BasicMed is safe but it will continue to monitor its impact on GA. The agency sent a report to Congress on March 10 based on a study of aviation activity and accident data accumulated in the first three years after the relaxed medical standards for recreational pilots went into effect in January of 2017. “The FAA determined that..." More Here.
04/02/2023 REMOTE TOWER AT LEESBURG EXECUTIVE SET TO CLOSE - AOPA URGES FAA TO RECONSIDER, FIND SOLUTION - ATC SAFETY - From AOPA - "New FAA requirements for remote air traffic control towers led digital tower vendor Saab to withdraw plans to continue to operate at Leesburg Executive Airport in Virginia. AOPA and pilots on the field are concerned about the potential for a reduction in safety should the airport begin to operate without ATC for the first time in several years." Read The Story Here.
04/02/2023 Say Approach Request - IFR Procedures - From AVweb - "As with so many things in aviation, it depends. By way of explanation, we’ll take close looks at two procedures serving the same strip of pavement, Runway 35 at the Asheville (N.C.) Regional Airport. Approach plates for both procedures are reproduced..." Continue Here.
04/02/2023 NTSB Says Midair Pilot Overshot Pattern Turns - FLIGHT / ATC SAFETY - "The NTSB has cited airmanship and an air traffic control failure in the midair collision of a Cirrus SR22 and a Key Lime Air Swearingen SA226TC at Centennial Airport in Englewood, Colorado on May 12, 2021. The board found that the Cirrus pilot was going at least 50 knots over the recommended speed as he prepared..." Continue.
03/27/2023 Trim Issue Sent Challenger 300 Into 4.2 G Upset, Killing Passenger - FLIGHT CNTROL ISSUE - From AVweb - "A fatal mishap that was originally reported as turbulence-related turned out to be a suspected issue with the stabilizer trim on the Challenger 300, according to the NTSB preliminary report. The privately operated flight left Keene, New Hampshire, on a flight to Leesburg, Virginia, in the late afternoon of March 3. A passenger aboard the aircraft was killed..." Continue Here.
03/27/2023 NTSB Releases Alert on Circling Approach Risks - IFR SAFETY - From AINonline - "The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has released a safety alert advising on the risks and preparation necessary to perform circling instrument approach procedures. The alert, “Circling Approaches: Know the Risks,” was released as the NTSB has been preparing a report on its investigation of the July 2021 Bombardier Challenger 605 accident in Truckee, California, that involved an unstabilized circle-to-land approach. In addition, the Safety Board released the alert to coincide with the Air Charter Safety Foundation’s (ACSF) Safety Symposium last week.
03/25/2023 AINsight: Blocking & Tackling To Avoid Runway Incursions - From AINonline - "Since roughly two-thirds of all runway incursions involve a pilot deviation, I will focus on the basic, fundamental, and proven practices for avoiding runway incursions. Using the mother of all sports analogies, I’ll cover all the “blocking and tackling” necessary for pilots to avoid a runway incursion." Material derived from the recent FAA Summit: Read the AINonline Coverage Here.
03/25/2023 FAA Urges Airlines, Pilots and Others to Take Key Safety Actions - NEWS - SAFETY - From FAA - Following the FAA's Safety Summit last week the agency issued a safety alert with specific steps it wants airlines, pilots and others to take. -
The FAA is urging the following actions:
- Ensure pilots and flight attendants have the same understanding of what “sterile flight deck” means and the risks associated with extraneous communication during this time.
- Emphasize importance of awareness of the aircraft in relation to taxiways, runways and other aircraft. This includes reviewing the following previously published SAFOs:
Continue reading HERE.
03/25/2023 Short And Sweet - Some of the best GA airports require adept short field technique. Even if it's to a regular mission for you, staying sharp on short runways is its own reward. - "Talk about a short-field machine! There is nothing like being able to take eight passengers and luggage to airports like the Gustaf III Airport (TFFJ) on the Caribbean island of Saint Barthélemy or Elizabeth Field Airport (0B8) at Fishers Island, N.Y. The airplane may be bigger, but the general principles are still the same." - Read about this Here.
03/24/2023 Possible Assistance Needed: Preventing Pan-Pan Problems - The March/April 2023 issue of FAA Safety Briefing magazine explores a few urgent aeronautical situations pilots may find themselves in, and which may require the use of the lesser-known, but equally important distress call — pan-pan.
We look at some common exhaust system issues, how to handle wildlife and laser strikes, as well as how to recognize the onset of hypoxia and ensure safety during higher altitude operations.
Difficult and Exhausting - How a "Simple" Thing Like an Exhaust System Can Create Deadly Difficulties
No Air Up There - Hypoxia Awareness
Blinded by the Light - A Look at Cockpit Laser Illumination Events
Going to the Birds to Prevent Hazardous Strikes - Using UV Lights to Drive Away Danger
When Pan-Pan Becomes Mayday - Search and Rescue in the 21st Century
Hitting Home Runs with First Responder Training Courses - FAA Training Helps First Responders Safely Assess an Aviation Accident Site
03/21/2023 HELICOPTER PILOTS PROVIDE LIFELINE TO TRAPPED RESIDENTS - VOLUNTEERS DELIVER SUPPLIES TO MOUNTAIN COMMUNITIES BURIED IN SNOW - NEWS - From AOPA - "In an “unprecedented effort” by local helicopter pilots in California, according to pilot and Lake Arrowhead resident Susan Newman Harrison, relief came to the snow-trapped villages of the San Bernardino Mountains via general aviation." Finish reading Here.
03/20/2023 Balloonists Get Break On ADS-B - NEWS - From AVweb - "The FAA and the lighter-than-air industry have reached a longer lasting agreement on ADS-B equipage and controlled airspace operations. Going forward, balloon operators who want to operate in Class C airspace can sign a letter of agreement with the FAA that sets out ground rules. The deal was reached over a year..." More Here.
03/19/2023 Higher cancer rates found in military pilots, ground crews - NEWS - From AP - "WASHINGTON (AP) — A Pentagon study has found high rates of cancer among military pilots and for the first time has shown that ground crews who fuel, maintain and launch those aircraft are also getting sick. The data had long been sought by retired military aviators who have raised alarms for years about the number of air and ground crew members they knew who had cancer. They were told that earlier military studies had found they were not at greater risk than the general U.S. population." Continue Here.
03/17/2023 The Engine-Out Glide - FLIGHT TECHNIQUE - From AVweb - "Regardless of the reasons, once the engine quits, it’s the pilot’s job to manage the airplane’s remaining energy and come to a safe stop. There are some considerations beyond just flying the airplane, but let’s talk about that first, if only to get it out of the way." Continue.
03/14/2023 Windy Canyon Dangers - Canyons draw adventurous pilots in—but they hold hidden hazards. - From Flying - "The most likely explanation for the accident is that the southwest wind poured into the portion of the canyon aligned with it and carried the RV-4 toward the eastern rim." Read the story Here.
03/13/2023 New Radar Software Protects Against Taxiway Landings - FAA TAXIWAY NEWS - AINonline - "Wrong-surface landings are one of the FAA’s top-five safety hazards, and to help mitigate the threat of pilots lining up to land on taxiways the agency has completed its enhancement of ground radar systems at 43 airports with an ASDE-X Taxiway Arrival Prediction (ATAP) upgrade. These airports already had either ASDE-X or similar ASSC ground radar systems. The ATAP software analyzes the flight paths of arriving aircraft and anticipates..." Learn more here.
03/13/2023 REENVISIONING FUTURE OF AVIATION AT CALIFORNIA AIRPORT - NEWS - From AOPA - "Ongoing deliberations over the fate of Whiteman Airport in Los Angeles wrapped with strong community support to reenvision and reinvest in the airport—though a motion to close is still on the table." - “I applaud all the stakeholders for coming together to find a worthwhile approach to address the concerns of residents but hope in the end the Board of Supervisors recognize the enormous benefits of keeping this airport vibrant and viable.”
"*AOPA will continue to follow the issue, supporting local efforts to bring the community into conversations related to the importance of general aviation. The Friends of Whiteman Airport and the Whiteman Airport Association continue to be open partners, willing to go above and beyond to meet the needs of the community while defending the importance of the airport." Read it Here.
03/13/2023 Biden budget looks to increase FAA funding - NEWS - From CNBC - "The Biden administration is seeking additional funding for the Federal Aviation Administration, funds that aim to boost hiring of air traffic controllers and facilitate other improvements to manage increasingly congested airspace.
The White House on Thursday proposed $16.5 billion for the agency, up from the $15.2 billion the FAA received in fiscal 2023. The request would increase funding for the National Airspace System to $3.5 billion, up $500 million, to improve the systems that oversee the country’s airspace “to safely accommodate the growth in traditional commercial aviation traffic alongside new entrants from the commercial space, unmanned aircraft, and advanced air mobility industries.” - Continue.
03/12/2023 Carburetors: Surprisingly Reliable - MECHAICAL - From AVweb - "Let’s take a few minutes to look at how an aircraft engine carburetor works, what can go wrong with it, how to troubleshoot problems and when it’s time for an overhaul." Read it Here.
03/12/2023 3 Webinars from Aviationweek.com -
03/12/2023 Schools Nationwide Receive $10 Million in FAA Grants to Develop the Next Generation of Aviation Professionals - WASHINGTON— Twenty-three schools will receive $10 million in grants from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to help attract and train students for careers as pilots and aviation maintenance technicians.
Twelve of the schools will receive $5 million from the FAA’s Aircraft Pilots Aviation Workforce Development Grants program. The schools can use the funding to create and deliver curriculums designed to prepare students to become pilots, aerospace engineers or drone operators.
Grant recipients include:
- AOPA Foundation Institute, Frederick, Md.: $498,100
- Black Pilots of America, Seattle, Wash.: $500,000
- Broward College, Pembroke Pines, Fla.: $500,000
- Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colo.: $345,711
- Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Daytona, Fla.: $484,803
- Kentucky Office of Employment & Training, Frankfort, Ky.: $500,000
- Organization of Black Aerospace Professionals, Inc, Mount Royal, N.J.: $171,231.80
- School District of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Penn.: $197,180
- Sling Flying Club, LLC, Torrance, Calif.: $499,865
- Tuskegee Museum, Detroit, Mich.: $500,000
- University of Virgin Islands, Charlotte Amalie West, St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands: $499,301
- William Jessup University, Rocklin, Calif.: $303,808.20
The other $5 million will go to 11 schools as part of the FAA’s Aviation Maintenance Technical Workers Workforce Development program. These grants will help build back the pipeline of maintenance professionals; approximately 20,000 fewer people are working in the aircraft maintenance sector than before the pandemic.
Grant recipients include:
- Aviation Technical Services Inc., Everett, Wash.: $459,206.29
- Cape Cod Community College, Plymouth, Mass.: $463,304
- Cincinnati State Technical and Community College, Cincinnati, Ohio: $423,594
- F & E Aviation Maintenance, Miami Springs, Fla.: $500,000
- Lincoln Land Community College, Springfield, Ill.: $500,000
- Nashua Community College, Nashua, N.H.: $456,051
- Pearl River Community College, Poplarville, Miss.: $500,000
- San Luis Obispo County Community College District, San Luis Obispo, Calif.: $484,299
- Tarrant County College District, Fort Worth, Texas: $282,345.71
- Technical Education Services Inc, Norfolk, Va.: $431,200
- The Fulton Leadership Academy, East Point, Ga.: $500,000
Recipients can use the funding to establish new educational programs; provide scholarships or apprenticeships; conduct outreach about careers in the aviation maintenance industry; and support educational opportunities related to aviation maintenance in economically disadvantaged areas. - Visit the FAA website for additional details about the grant recipients.
03/10/2023 Exhaust Matters - AIRCRAFT CESSNA/PIPER MECHANICAL SAFETY - From Aviation Safety Magazine - "While carrying out the pressure test in AD CF90-03-R2, large leaks were found in the area surrounding the muffler tailpipe area under the heat muff shroud support structure. No defects in this area were visible. Without the pressure test, this defect would not have been found. It is assumed the muffler is original to the airplane. Cessna 172M and Others - Read the Article HERE.
03/10/2023 Be a Model Mechanic - The work behind the scenes is just as important as what’s in front of the curtains. Aviation Maintenance Technicians are the unsung heroes who regularly upkeep aircraft for our safety. Learn what it takes to be an exemplary mechanic in the article “Professionalism in Maintenance – What it Takes to Become a Model Mechanic” at https://bit.ly/3QA0kEu.
03/09/2023 The March/April 2023 issue of FAA Safety Briefing magazine explores a few urgent aeronautical situations pilots may find themselves in, and which may require the use of the lesser-known, but equally important distress call — pan-pan. - We look at some common exhaust system issues, how to handle wildlife and laser strikes, as well as how to recognize the onset of hypoxia and ensure safety during higher altitude operations. - You Can Download the Magazine as a .pdf file HERE.
03/08/2023 FAA seeks industry input on 'extended reality' simulation software - FAA CAMI PR NEWS - From Military & Aerospace Electronics - "The FAA's Civil Aerospace Medical Institute (CAMI) aims to establish an XR laboratory to utilize these enabling technologies to to enhance training, performance, and safety. - WASHINGTON - The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has a need for extended reality software to support training and technical research and is looking for industry input. Extended reality (XR) encapsulates augmented-, virtual-, and mixed-reality technologies (AR, VR, MR respectively)." Continue
03/07/2023 NTSB Calls for Safety Cameras, Data Recorders in eVTOL Aircraft - NAS INFO - From AINonline - "With dozens of companies planning to begin operating new eVTOL aircraft as early as 2025, federal agencies are pondering how to safely integrate them into the national airspace—and how to handle the inevitable accident investigations. - The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) will be in charge of investigating all accidents and certain incidents that occur during eVTOL flights, Tim LeBaron, director of the NTSB’s Office of Aviation Safety, said Tuesday during a panel discussion on aviation policy at Heli-Expo in Atlanta. This covers passenger-carrying air taxi operations as well as cargo transportation missions using new eVTOL aircraft, which can take off and land vertically but fly like an airplane with a fixed-wing during cruise. " Continue Here.
03/07/2023 Why Is Area Forecast Discussion Important for Preflight Planning? - WX INFO - From Flying - "The AFD is a vehicle for the forecaster to document technical reasoning behind the forecast they just issued. - Question: I am a relatively new pilot. I recently read about something called a forecast discussion that could be useful for preflight planning. Can you tell me more about this and how I can access it online?
Answer: Since I introduced the area forecast discussions (AFDs) to the general aviation community a couple of decades ago, this has become a common resource for pilots to review before making operational decisions as it relates to weather. Just to clear up any initial confusion, the area forecast discussion is not..." Finish reading Here..
03/07/2023 Approach Fuel - SAFETY - From Aviation Safety Magazine - "Having enough fuel aboard for the proposed flight is Aviation 101, but pilots keep failing the final exams. Ensuring there is fuel aboard the airplane adequate for the planned flight is a basic, primary responsibility for any pilot. Unfortunately, the accident record tells us it’s one responsibility not all pilots fulfill. In our experience, fuel exhaustion, starvation or simple mismanagement accounts for a healthy proportion of engine-failure mishaps. This is true despite the event being resolved without anyone except the pilot knowing about it, or the NTSB opening an accident investigation. While fuel-system complexity can be an argument in defense of any failure to meet this basic requirement, it ultimately falls down because ensuring enough of the stuff is aboard and gets to the engine(s) is always the pilot’s responsibility. And you did read..." Read the rest Here.
03/07/2023 Accident Probe: Ice Isn’t Nice - WX INFO - From Flying - "Airframe icing can be found year-round, depending on geography and altitude. In North America, it’s the season when pilots of personal airplanes, which generally don’t fly high enough to worry about ice most of the year, need to factor it into their planning and execution. Even if you’re flying something with a form of ice protection more capable than a warm pitot tube. - One of the things about in-flight airframe icing is..." Learn More about icing Here.
03/07/2023 The Severe Storm - WX INFO - From Flying - "Strong thunderstorms are one of the places aviation and fear often intersect. And for good reason: severe storms have led to countless disasters, perhaps the most famous one being the Delta L-1011 crash at DFW Airport in 1985. That tragedy brought far-reaching consequences to flight training programs and ATC equipment and led to advances in the field of meteorology. - You can read a lot about thunderstorms online and see all sorts of storm video and tornado footage on YouTube, but in this article, I’ll draw on my experience as a flight forecaster..." Continue Here.
03/05/2023 Van Nuys Airport expansion plans challenged by locals - AIRPORT NEWS - KTLA - "Van Nuys Airport expansion plans challenged by locals - The 730-acre airfield, which is one of the heaviest trafficked airfields of its size and the busiest for private jets in the greater Los Angeles area, currently does not have scheduled flights, meaning that planes can take off and land at any time during any day. According to airport officials, a jet takes off or lands once every seven minutes, and..." Continue Here.
03/05/2023 Facing Uncertain Future, FAA Nom Stresses Leadership - From AINonline - "FAA Administrator nominee Phil Washington opened his confirmation hearing this morning by telling the Senate Commerce Committee the FAA is at a crossroads and must protect the safest era of aviation, modernize technology, lift employee morale, and maintain its global leadership.
Washington, the CEO of Denver International Airport, also vowed to reinforce that the agency is a regulator of the aircraft manufacturers, airlines, and new entrants, and would be “guided by” the sacrifice and historic advocacy of the families of the Boeing 737 Max and Colgan Air accidents.
He further addressed head-on in his opening statement criticisms..." Continue HERE
03/01/2023 Biden-Harris Administration Announces Nearly $1B in Bipartisan Infrastructure Law Airport Funding Awarded to Meet Surging Air Travel Demand - AVIATION NEWS - From Flying - The awards going to the 99 airports are funded by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which was signed into effect in late 2021. - INFO Here. View a data visualization of the airports receiving funding.
02/28/2023 Serious U.S. Airport Runway Incursions are Declining, FAA Says - From Flying - "FAA data shows a drop in ‘serious’ close calls over the last 20 years. - Despite a series of narrowly avoided accidents at U.S. airports in recent months, FAA data shows the most serious close calls have declined over the last 20 years.
According to the agency, serious close calls involve situations where a collision was “narrowly avoided” or in which there is “significant potential for a collision.” In 2022, there were 18 serious runway incursions in the U.S.—up from a low of five reported in 2010 but down from a high of 32 reported in 2007." More Here.
02/28/2023 GAMA Chief Criticizes FAA-Santa Clara MoU - UNLEADED FUEL INFO - From AINonline - Business Aviation News - "GAMA president and CEO Pete Bunce believes the aviation industry is facing a new wave of threats of airport closures because local communities are using leaded avgas as an excuse to curtail general aviation activities." Continue Here.
02/27/2023 The Drip, Drip Of Bad Publicity About 100LL - AVGAS INFO - From AVweb - "Meanwhile, yet another poisoning-the-planet story appeared this week in Politico. It checks all the boxes, with most of the right sources and although it has some errors and assigns too much blame to ASTM’s sclerotic grind, it’s generally a fair story. It ignored how Santa Clara County withheld EPA findings about measured airborne lead levels around Reid-Hillview airport and that the Bay Area Air Quality agency stopped lead monitoring because levels were below EPA minimum standards. But a more recent study..." Full Article Here.
02/26/2023 Mid-Air Strategies - SAFETY - From Aviation Safety - "The recent rash of mid-air collisions reminds us it's not enough to expect other pilots to properly fly a traffic pattern or even look for you. Perhaps it’s the seemingly uncontrolled nature of mid-air collisions, both before and after colliding, that makes them one of the greatest fears among pilots. Most discussions of collision avoidance center on the rules for flying a visual traffic pattern. Knowing and following the rules is vital." Read it Here.
02/22/2023 Arizona Safety Advisory Group (ASAG) is unsurpassed for diligence and Aviation Safety commitment. Meetings are held Monthy and no matter where one might live and fly, viewing their meeting notes is a learning experience and well worth the time. In addition to a host of information, you'll find detailed coverage of Arizona located pilot deviations caused by folks that live locally and elsewhere, and what caused them. ASAG Meeting Feb. 2023 Minutes can be Viewed Here.
02/17/2023 NTSB Releases Tool for GA Accident Analysis - NEW APPLICATION - From Flying - "The new tools streamlines and simplifies accessing NTSB findings and safety recommendations." "If you have ever done a search of the National Transportation Safety Board website to find information on a particular accident, you probably recall that it could be a challenging, sometimes even tedious, experience. The NTSB has created an online tool, the General Aviation Accident Dashboard, to streamline this process. - The dashboard provides summary statistics, investigative findings, and safety recommendations that grew out of the investigation. The dashboard covers accidents from 2012 through 2021 and includes..." Continue Here.
02/17/2023 FAA Issues New Airport Safety Rule - FAA NEWS - From Flying - "The FAA is mandating the implementation of safety management systems at 200 of the busiest U.S. airports. - In an effort to increase safety at airports, the Federal Aviation Administration is mandating certain airports develop and implement a safety management system (SMS), the agency announced Thursday. - According to a statement released by the FAA, the final rule takes effect 60 days after publication in the Federal Register and is designed to improve safety at some 200 of the nation’s busiest airports. Read about the SMS Here.
02/16/2023 FAA Studying Unleaded Avgas Transition - NEWS = From AVweb - "The FAA has at least temporarily stopped its investigation into whether Santa Clara County in California is violating its grants agreement by refusing to sell leaded gasoline at county-owned Reid Hillview and San Martin Airport. In exchange, the county has agreed to consider taking part in a study into the transition process from leaded to unleaded fuels at airports across the country. The agency has agreed to stop..." Continue.
02/15/2023 BEYOND PROFICIENT: IFR SERIES - Stabilized Approach - VIDEO - "Become a better, safer pilot with the AOPA Air Safety Institute’s Beyond Proficient: IFR video series. The videos provide a unique perspective on how to fly safely in the departure, en route, and approach profiles under instrument flight rules. - Whether you’re instrument-rated or recently enrolled in instrument training, the videos offer tips and tricks to master complex instrument flying aspects. See the Video HERE.
2/10/2023 InFO Updated to Include New Arrival Alert Notice - NEWS - FAA - "The FAA has updated Information for Operator (InFO) bulletin 22001, Arrival Alert Notice (AAN) and Airport Diagram Symbols for Wrong-Surface Hot Spots to include a new AAN for North Las Vegas Airport (VGN). AANs help create situational awareness for pilots by providing a visual graphic of a wrong-surface landing hot spot at airports with a misalignment history. There are now 12 AANs published in the Chart Supplement (faa.gov/air_traffic/flight_info/aeronav/Digital_Products/dafd). The FAA recommends that pilots familiarize themselves with the information in this InFO and ensure they know the hot spot symbols for the test airfields. See the InFO here faa.gov/othervisit/aviationindustry/airlineoperators/airlinesafety/info-22001-arrival-alert-notice and be sure to visit the FAA’s Runway Safety page at faa.gov/airports/runway_safety.
2/10/2023 Flying Taxis May Soon Land at Livermore Airport - ARTICLE - From The Independent - "LIVERMORE – New partnerships at Livermore Municipal Airport hope to bring to the area a new era of aviation, known as advanced air mobility (AAM), which could circumvent Bay Area traffic and quiet the skies over the Tri-Valley. - AAM refers to the group of aircraft commonly known as air taxis; small aircraft that typically use electric motors and sport vertical takeoff and landing capabilities to fly passengers short distances. Continue Here.
02/10/2023 Mark Swan - Airport Operators’ Association 2023 annual conference in London - VIDEO - From International Airport Review - At the Airport Operators’ Association 2023 annual conference in London which took place on Tuesday January 31, International Airport Review caught up with Mark Swan, Head of Airspace Change Organizing Group (ACOG) for this exclusive interview. Watch it Here.
02/07/2023 How GPS Works - Hit “Direct” and follow the magenta line. That’s all you need to know about GPS, right? Well, maybe. Or maybe not, if you’re an informed aviator. - NAVIGATION INFO - From AVweb - "These days, GPS-driven moving maps are ubiquitous—even available on some watches—and instantly show your position within a few meters. How can that be?" This print starts with the basics. Read it Here.
02/05/2023 GA’s unleaded fuel problem is solved. - General Aviation News 5/2022 Addressing GAMI G100UL. (Includes FAQ) - "After a 12-year quest, General Aviation Modifications Inc. (GAMI) has created an unleaded fuel that is a drop-in, fleet-wide solution that can be used in every spark ignition piston engine in the FAA database. - “We’re done folks. We fixed the problem,” George Braly, GAMI’s head of engineering, told a crowd at the 2022 SUN ’n FUN Aerospace Expo." Read it Here.
02/05/2023 Toroidal propellers: A noise-killing game changer in air and water - DESIGN INNOVATION - From New Atlas - "These strangely shaped twisted-toroid propellers look like a revolutionary (sorry) advance for the aviation and marine sectors. Radically quieter than traditional propellers in both air and water, they're also showing some huge efficiency gains. - For devices designed to revolve, however, there's been little in terms of revolutionary design changes for an awfully long time; prop-driven aircraft still use twisted-aerofoil bladed props similar in design to the bamboo-copters Chinese kids were enjoying 2,400 years ago..." Discover More Here.
02/05/2023 AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS - GO BEYOND THE TEXTBOOK—ANALYZE YOUR AIRCRAFT’S HEALTH WITH THIS SAFETY SPOTLIGHT - From AOPA - "Aircraft are extremely reliable when properly cared for and can deliver years of safe flight. But not all pilots know as much as they should about the proper care and maintenance of their aircraft’s engine, propeller, and pneumatic system—all critical to the safety of flight. Do you read and understand the POH for your aircraft and keep up with all recommended maintenance for every system on your airplane? - This safety spotlight examines an airplane’s piston engines, propellers, and pneumatic systems, and how to keep them in the best condition possible." Receive Certificate of Completion. - Get INFO Here.
02/03/2023 The Surprising Market Demand for Regional Air Mobility - AAM NOTES - From Aviation Today - "Regional airports are underutilized across the country for many reasons. Airline deregulation forced passengers to connect at about 20 hub-airports across the United States, making short flights unattractive. In parallel, airlines have retired turboprop aircraft that once efficiently connected these communities, in favor of larger regional jets that are better used on larger volume markets. Consequently, airlines no longer have the equipment to profitably serve these communities." Read More Here.
02/01/2023 FAA Adds 11 Airports To Those Served By Fuel-Saving OPD Procedures - NEWS" - From AVweb - "By eliminating the need to repeatedly descend, then power up to level off (frequently several times per landing approach), OPDs are expected to save 90,000 gallons of fuel annually on average. That’s the equivalent of the fuel used by.." More Here.
02/01/2023 Introduction to Safety Risk Management - Civil aviation organizations, air carriers, & U.S. military services have embraced Safety Risk Management, but all pilots can benefit by adding steps to assess risk in their own operations. - Read the FAA Safety Blog Here. - Download Fact Sheet Here.
01/31/2023 FAA Bolsters Safeguards for Notam Maintenance, Database - NEWS - From AINonline - "While the FAA continues to examine the notam system outages that led to the temporary ground stop on January 11, the agency has taken initial steps regarding the database and maintenance to safeguard against similar glitches from occurring, according to FAA Acting Administrator Billy Nolen." Read it Here.
01/31/2023 Stumbling Around In The Rain - WX INFO - From AVweb - "Thunderstorm avoidance begins at home, by picking your timing and route. When it gets up close and personal, remain in visual conditions. - It’s not unheard of to think thunderstorms are only a product of summer weather. Certainly they are more common in warmer months, but wintertime “thundersnows” are common enough..." Continue Here.
01/27/2023 Frontal Weather - WX INFO - From AVweb - "Confused by those markings you always see on the weather charts that you think are fronts, but that's about all you know? Let's de-confuse what they mean." Webmaster: Well worth the read. View it Here.
01/27/2023 Aviation Weather Handbook Updated - From FAA Safety Briefing - The FAA’s updated Aviation Weather Handbook consolidates the weather information from several weather-related advisory circulars (AC) into one source document. These ACs include aviation weather, thunderstorms, clear air turbulence avoidance, aviation weather services, pilot windshear guide, and hazardous mountain winds.
The handbook is designed as a technical reference for all who operate in the national airspace system (NAS). Pilots, dispatchers, and operators will find this handbook a valuable resource for flight planning and decision-making, and a consolidated source of weather information. Download the Aviation Weather Handbook at bit.ly/AviationWx .
Defeating the Dragons of Doubt - From FAA Safety Briefing - The “dragons of doubt” that can crop up during one’s flying career can be fearsomely effective. But don’t let them erode your confidence and drive you to the ground for good. In the article “Defeating the Dragons of Doubt,” https://medium.com/faa/defeating-the-dragons-of-doubt-a35c2a5368ba author Susan Parson looks at how a mentor can provide the support, encouragement, and advice needed to win the battle against doubt. - For more on the importance of mentoring, modeling, and professionalism in aviation, check out our Jan/Feb 2023 Leading By Example issue here: www.faa.gov/newsroom/faa-safety-briefing-magazine.
01/27/2023 Unmanned Traffic Management in 2023: Insights from the CEO of Unifly - From Aviation Today - "Unifly, an unmanned traffic management (UTM) system provider, has developed a platform for managing the integration of drones and other advanced types of aircraft into low-altitude airspace. - Avionics International covered some updates from the company in a recent issue of our magazine. We spoke with Unifly’s co-founder and CEO, Andres Van Swalm, last May following the news of a €10 million investment from Terra Drone Corporation and Japanese government fund JOIN. Unifly has partnered with ENAIRE, a Spanish ANSP, to develop an automated digital drone management platform. The UTM system provider also launched a UTM platform in collaboration with the Port of Antwerp. More Here.
01/25/2023 A new issue of the SatNav News is now available featuring the William J. Hughes Technical Center evaluation of ARAIM. You can download it HERE
01/24/2023 The AGENDA for MEETING #16 of the KWHP Community Advisory Committee (CAC) - the FINAL Mtg. 1/26/23 can be viewed HERE.
01/24/2023 EAA Turning 70 - From AVweb - "The Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) is celebrating its 70th anniversary on Thursday. Founded by Paul Poberezny, the group met for the first time on Jan. 26, 1953, at what was then Curtiss Wright Airport (MWC) in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Since its beginnings with “three dozen Milwaukee-area aviation enthusiasts,” the organization has grown to include more than 270,000 members and 900 local chapters. EAA’s founder, the late Paul Poberezny, often said..." Read More Info
01/22/2023 FAA Aircraft registration extended from every 3 years to 7 years beginning January 23, 2023. Details are Here.
01/21/2023 Addressing KSMO - Santa Monica City Council Study Plan 5303 (2020) that outlines the very detailed proposed future for KSMO. View it Here.
01/19/2023 Groups Comment On EPA Lead Endangerment Finding - NEWS - From AVweb - "A coalition of seven major aviation groups has submitted its comments on the EPA’s endangerment finding on leaded aviation fuel and it’s asking the agency not to jump the gun on banning tetrethyl lead. “The coalition urges the EPA, in coordination with the FAA, to ensure that any final finding..." More Here.
01/16/2023 Corrosion - SAFETY EDUCATION - From EAA - "We’ve all seen corrosion up close and personally in machinery and vehicles. It is the law of entropy in action. Planet Earth continues to present us with the challenges of chemical interactions in a world filled with metal. - FAA Advisory Circular 43-4B contains 126 pages of information on aircraft and corrosion. It begins, “This advisory circular (AC) is a summary of the current available data regarding identification and treatment of corrosive attack on aircraft structures and engine materials. Corrosion inspection frequency, corrosion identification, and especially corrosion treatment continues to be the responsibility of the operator.” "Rather than try to cover corrosion A-Z here, I’m going to hit the top things to think about in a variety of circumstances..." Read the Article Here.
01/16/2023 NASA Conducts eVTOL Crash Test, Gains Data for Model Validation - AAM NEWS - From Transport Up - "NASA employees conducted a full-scale crash test of an eVTOL late last year at NASA’s Langley Research Center in Virginia. The eVTOL was developed by RVLT (Revolutionary Vertical Lift Technology) as part of advancing NASA’s Advanced Aerial Mobility Initiative." Story and NASA Report Here.
01/15/2023 FAA Says $26 Million Needed To Cover Aircraft 5G Modifications. - NEWS - From SIMPLE FLYING - "The FAA claims that 1,000 aircraft will need to install equipment to prevent 5G transmission interference." Read it Here.
01/15/2023 Proposed SMS Rule for Manufacturers and Charter/Commuter/Air Tour Operators - FAA NEWS - The FAA has proposed a rule that requires charter, commuter, and air tour operators, and aircraft manufacturers to implement a Safety Management System or SMS (www.faa.gov/about/initiatives/sms). An SMS is a set of policies and procedures where companies identify, monitor, and address potential operational hazards early on, before they become serious problems. U.S. airlines have been required to have an SMS since 2018. This proposed rule is intended to improve aviation safety by requiring organizations to implement a proactive approach to managing safety.
You can view the proposed rule here: www.federalregister.gov/documents/2023/01/11/2022-28583/safety-management-systems. Please send comments on or before March 13, 2023. You can view the FAA’s press release here: www.faa.gov/newsroom/faa-proposes-rule-mandating-use-program-detect-mitigate-risks-early.
01/15/2023 FlySafe Topics Cover Aircraft Performance Calculations and SRM - FAA SAFETY -The latest FlySafe topics for December and January cover aircraft performance calculations and safety risk management (SRM) respectively. Pilots should consult their performance charts prior to any takeoff, especially a takeoff that is out of the norm for the pilot. Knowing and applying some rules of thumb regarding takeoffs can help you make better initial decisions with go or no-go for a particular set of circumstances. Read more about aircraft performance and calculations at https://medium.com/faa/aircraft-performance-and-calculations-b24a10fe2401 and check out the video here youtu.be/EcC847JzN8A.
SRM is formalized way of dealing with hazards which can help pilots fly safer and more efficiently. It allows pilots to identify hazards, and assess and mitigate potential risks to an acceptable level. Find tips and resources to help you get started with SRM here medium.com/faa/introduction-to-safety-risk-management-8e1b1ac15b4c.
01/15/2023 Safety is No Accident - FAA SAFETY - You’ve probably heard the “safety is no accident” reminder in various parts of your life. Indeed, safety does not happen accidentally. It requires a level of thinking, planning, and acting that we often describe as “aeronautical decision-making” or “risk management.” Consider also that safety is not so much a state of being as it is a matter of doing the right things to create — and maintain! — safe operations. In the article “Safety is No Accident,” https://medium.com/faa/safety-is-no-accident-89fb6707025c we learn how integrating a personal safety management system (SMS) can help you better manage risk and be a safer pilot.
For more on the importance of mentoring, modeling, and professionalism in aviation, check out our Jan/Feb 2023 Leading By Example issue here: www.faa.gov/newsroom/faa-safety-briefing-magazine.
Produced by the FAA Safety Briefing editors, www.faa.gov/newsroom/faa-safety-briefing-magazine
01/15/2023 Pentagon receives additional UFO reports, no sign of aliens - NEWS - From Military Times - "The U.S. has now collected 510 reports of unidentified flying objects, many of which are flying in sensitive military airspace. While there’s no evidence of extraterrestrials, they still pose a threat, the government said in a declassified report summary released Thursday." Full Article Here.
01/13/2023 AOPA FIRES BACK AT SANTA CLARA COUNTY AMID 100LL FUEL BAN DISPUTE - CLAIMS VIOLATION OF FEDERAL RULES AND OUTLINES REPORTS OF UNSAFE FUELING EVENTS CAUSED BY AIRPORT’S ACTION - From AOPA - "AOPA and other stakeholders cited several inaccuracies in Santa Clara County’s motion to dismiss, or resolve in the California county’s favor, a Part 16 complaint submitted in October that warns of unsafe practices at Reid-Hillview Airport. - Currently, there is no commercially available and viable unleaded fuel option for aircraft that require 100-octane fuel." Read the dispute Claims Here.
01/13/2023 What will it take to scale Sustainable Aviation Fuel in the next decade? - From futureofsustainablefuel.com - "Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) is an immediate and scalable solution to decarbonizing the industry. As a quick primer, SAF is a mix of hydrocarbons that is chemically similar to conventional jet fuel but not derived from fossil fuels. SAF instead relies on carbon atoms from organic and waste materials known as feedstocks. These include waste oils, algae, forest residues, municipal solid waste, and industrial gasses, as well as atmospheric CO2. By utilizing carbon that exists in or would have otherwise been emitted into the atmosphere, SAF can lower CO2 emissions from aviation by up to 100% compared to conventional jet fuel." More Here.
01/12/2023 Have You Checked the NOTAMs Today? - EDUCATION - From Flying - "FLYING's quick guide explaining the different types of Notices to Air Missions and what they mean. - The airlines cannot fly without access to NOTAMs—this was demonstrated when the computer system crashed and the FAA called a ground stop until the NOTAMs computer system could be reactivated." So, ask yourself if you need an information review covering the types of NOTAMS. CLICK Here for it!
01/11/2023 FAA Issues New Heliport Guidance - NEWS - From AINonline - "The FAA has issued its new and long-awaited heliport planning, design and construction Advisory Circular 150/5390-2D that provides largely voluntary guidance to the rotorcraft community. This new AC supersedes previously issued guidance from 2012. The FAA notes that “the standards and guidelines contained in this AC are practices the FAA recommends for establishing an acceptable level of safety, performance, and operation for heliports.” - "However, it does not cover advanced air mobility (AAM) or eVTOL operations. Rather, the FAA notes that it is “developing guidance for vertiports that would be intended for VTOL and/or unmanned aircraft. Until that guidance is published, entities developing operating sites for new aircraft entrants are encouraged..." Read More Here.
01/10/2023 KOXR / KCMA Noise Abatement Program Details - NEWS - From Ventura County - The County of Ventura Department of Airports appreciates your seeking out resources to help you understand how aircraft noise and overflight concerns are addressed. We are actively working to address existing concerns related to noise and to ensure the community knows we are listening and working to improve airport operations. Get the recommended Noise Abatement Procedure Here.
01/10/2023 Ice Is Not Nice - "Of the 51 reports in the ASRS Icing Report set used for this article, Part 91 pilots submitted 41. Obvious conclusion: Ice can be dangerous. That speaks for itself, but there’s more. - Icing affects flight operations in many ways. Accordingly, we offer some thought-provoking reports from pilots who’ve been there. Little has been said about instrument malfunctions due to icing, and we discuss those in particular." Continue Here.
01/09/2023 FAA WORKING TO UPDATE PRIVATE-USE AIRPORT LISTINGS - From 01/2021 - From AOPA - "AOPA is encouraging owners of private-use airports to confirm with the FAA that the information the agency has on file about their airports is no more than three years old as the agency works to update its data on the airfields. Owners who would like to review the information on file for their private-use airports can visit this web page, then click “Quick Links” at the top right corner of the page and select “Private Airport Report” from the menu that appears. The FAA is attempting to contact private-use airport owners by mail, so it is important to ensure that a correct mailing address is also on file, said Adam Williams, AOPA manager of airport policy. - Private-use airports that have not had information updates for more than..." Continue Here.
01/07/2023 Doing The Wave - Getting up close and personal with mountainous terrain can easily exceed climb capabilities. - WINDSHEAR SAFETY - From Aviation Safety - "On January 25, 2019, at 1459 Pacific time, a Rockwell International Commander 112A was destroyed when it impacted terrain near the summit of Mount Hood, Ore. The solo private pilot (male, 63) was fatally injured. Visual conditions prevailed at nearby observation sites." This article defines a real problem. Read It Here.
01/06/2023 The January/February 2023 issue of FAA Safety Briefing magazine explores mindset, skillset, and toolset items that can help you be a better aviation citizen. - Leading by Example - Articles highlight the importance of mentoring, modeling, and professionalism. We also look at the benefits of a personal safety management system and how social media engagement can help you better connect with your fellow aviators. You can download the Magazine Issue Here.
Bonus Video: 4 Rules for Safer Takeoffs in 57 Seconds - Pilots should consult their performance charts prior to any takeoff, especially a takeoff that is out of the norm for the pilot. Knowing and applying some rules of thumb regarding takeoffs can help you make better initial decisions with go or no-go for a particular set of circumstances.
01/06/2023 Proposed FCC Rules to Enable Licensed Spectrum Use for Drones; Jessica Rosenworcel Quoted - FCC NEWS - From ExecutiveGov - "The Federal Communications Commission has started developing rules to enable unmanned aircraft system operators to access wireless communication links in the 5030-5091 MHz band to improve the reliability of drone operations. - The FCC said Wednesday it has released a notice of proposed rulemaking to seek industry input on whether changes to measures are necessary to facilitate UAS use on flexible-use wireless networks." Read More Here.
01/06/2023 Pioneers Push to Accelerate Green and Autonomous Aviation - AAM NEWS - LEADERS - FUEL GOALS - From AINonline - "So what’s fueling what is now commonly referred to as an advanced air mobility (AAM) revolution? The short answer is money and lots of it. A more complete answer is a mix of distributed electric propulsion and increasing automation of flight on a trajectory towards autonomous operations that will not involve a pilot being on board the aircraft. - Multiple companies, many of them start-ups with origins outside the aviation industry, are looking to exploit the new technology..." Continue.
01/04/2023 THE SEVEN YEAR ITCH - Medical Info regarding what might cause "itching" and how pilots can be affected. From Dr. Jonathan Sackier, AOPA. Read it Here.
01/04/2023 Sustainable Aviation Fuel Production Tripled in 2022: IATA - NEWS - From Flying - "While growth is promising, refiners need incentives to produce more SAF to meet net zero by 2050. - The organization said there are “more optimistic” estimates that place the total as high as 450 million liters, but said, “Both scenarios position the SAF industry on the verge of an exponential capacity and production ramp-up toward an identified tipping point of 30 billion liters by 2030, with the right supporting policies.” Read More Here.
01/04/2023 ‘Paused’ J&J Vaccine Now FAA-Approved For Aviation Professionals - MED NEWS - From AVweb - "The FAA announced last week that Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose COVID-19 vaccine is safe for “pilots and other safety-sensitive professionals” [such as air traffic controllers]. The vaccine was shelved from distribution to the general public in 2021 after reports surfaced of rare but adverse side effects, such as blood clots in women. - With last week’s announcement, aviation personnel may now receive..." Continue Here.
01/03/2023 The Many Factors That Lead to Runway Overruns - Stabilized approaches are critical to mitigating the risks. - RUNWAY SAFETY - From Flying - "FAR 91.103 requires the pilot to be familiar with all available information prior to the flight which includes aircraft performance—takeoffs and landings. Yet many pilots get lazy and stop doing the calculations, falling into the complacency trap “it’s only me in the aircraft,” or “I’m just going out for touch-and-go flights, and I know the runway real well.” - "Don’t be this pilot. Accidents happen when pilots become complacent. - In 2018 the FAA released Advisory Circular AC 91-79A, Mitigating the Risks of a Runway Overrun Upon Landing. According to the AC, the FAA and the NTSB determined runway overruns during the landing phase of flight account for approximately 10 incidents or accidents every year, “with varying degrees of severity, with many accidents resulting in fatalities.” Read More Here.
01/01/2023 VFR into IMC avoidance, escape - From AOPA - A video collection of Important Weather Lessons - "The AOPA Air Safety Institute launched a new safety campaign in April that spotlights the most significant cause of weather-related accidents in general aviation: inadvertent visual flight into instrument conditions. Visit the resource center"
12/31/2022 BASICMED LIMITATION LIFTED - FINAL RULE EXTENDS ELIGIBILITY TO ACT AS REQUIRED CREWMEMBER - From AOPA - "The FAA concurred with AOPA and individuals who supported a rulemaking proposal that enables pilots who medically qualify under BasicMed to act as required crewmembers other than pilot in command—more specifically as safety pilots. - The FAA announced November 16 that Acting Administrator Billy Nolen has signed the final rule that will take effect 30 days after its forthcoming publication in the Federal Register. The rule brings significant change to the relatively small commercial balloon industry, establishing a medical certification requirement for the first time estimated to apply to just under 5,000 pilots. It also includes BasicMed provisions that now enable..." Continue Here.
12/31/2022 TSA Starts Testing Facial Recognition Technology at 16 Major Airports - From Aviation Today - "The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is now exploring the potential of facial recognition technology by introducing kiosks with cameras at 16 major airports to conduct facial identification. It has been integrated at major domestic airports from Atlanta, Boston, and Denver to Detroit, Los Angeles, and Miami—the pilot program began at Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA) in 2020. However, facial recognition has been banned by some cities, including San Francisco. The TSA has plans for expanding use of the technology across the U.S. next year. The system works like this: Passengers insert their ID..." Continue Here.
12/30/2022 New Pilot Minute Video Covers Jet Lag - In the latest episode of the Pilot Minute video series (youtu.be/jFLCbRaxMb8), Federal Air Surgeon Dr. Susan Northrup explains how jet lag circadian rhythm disruption can lead to flight safety risks and cause you to feel unwell in a variety of ways. The video also points out some tips to help prevent jet lag from affecting your flight performance.
You can find more information in the pilot safety brochure on circadian rhythm disruption here: faa.gov/sites/faa.gov/files/Circadian_Rhythm_English_0.pdf (PDF).
You’ll find the complete playlist of Pilot Minute videos here: youtube.com/playlist?list=PL5vHkqHi51DQvRjGJo1SuXyZpKl5HbzOI.
12/30/2022 FAA Releases New Weather Handbook - The updated 'Aviation Weather Handbook' includes more than 500 pages of practical information.
The 532-page handbook is subdivided into three parts:
- Part 1: Overview of the United States Aviation Weather Service Program and Information.
- Part 2: Weather Theory and Aviation Hazards.
- Part 3: Technical Details Relating to Weather Products and Aviation Weather Tools.
The handbook features color illustrations and bullet point presentations that make the sometimes-complex nature of weather easier to understand. More Here.
12/20/2022 New Runway Safety Resources for California Pilots - California Pilots:
The FAA's From the Flight Deck video series features videos for 20 airports throughout California, with more to come. This series uses aircraft mounted cameras to capture runway and taxiway footage and combines this with diagrams and visual graphics to clearly identify hot spots and other safety-sensitive items.
Find the airports you frequent in our video playlist of California airports, and share this resource with your fellow pilots. You can also help get the word out to your friends and family on social media using sample posts from our toolkit.
Learn more about the From the Flight Deck series, go to our video playlist of California airports, or browse videos of airports throughout the United States.
- Learn more about the From the Flight Deck Video series https://www.faa.gov/flight_deck
- Video Playlist of California Airports https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PL5vHkqHi51DRm7Nf36lcQyEJwPFu_TwXh
- Social Media Toolkit for California Pilots https://socialpresskit.com/fromtheflightdeck
- From the Flight Deck Video Playlist of airports throughout the U.S. https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PL5vHkqHi51DSNpsBC8nb8Q8gFcGVmWhGA
12/20/2022 Can Big Data Help Improve GA Safety? - From Aviation Safety - The FAA is promoting a voluntary flight data collection and management effort to general aviation. - The modern general aviation airplane has data flowing from it like never before. The flood started with digital engine monitors. Then electronic flight decks came along, capable of storing a vast array of information about each flight for later retrieval and analysis, which is especially valuable in a training environment. Now it’s ADS-B, which literally tracks our position, every heading change and altitude excursion with uncanny accuracy and—with the right equipment—for anyone to see.
Larger airplanes—business jets and airliners—have been installing digital flight data recorders (DFDRs) for some time, whether required or not, as well as quick-access recorders (QARs) which, as their name implies, are designed to provide operators..." Read More Here.
12/17/2022 Two Easy Rules-of-Thumb For Calculating a 3-Degree Glide Slope - From Boldmethod - "Have you ever found yourself chasing the glideslope on an ILS approach? How about the VASI or PAPI on a VFR final approach? - There's an easier way to do it. Groundspeed has a significant effect on descent rate, and there's a formula you can use to ballpark your feet per minute (FPM) descent, even before you get on glideslope. - The following formulas are a great way to get yourself on glide,..." Learn How Here.
12/17/2022 Defense Spending Bill Set To Repeal FAA LODA Policy for Flight Training in Experimental Aircraft - "Language in the bill eliminates the requirement for pilots and instructors. - The latest defense authorization bill passed Thursday night offers a reprieve for pilots and flight instructors currently forced to obtain a letter of deviation authority, known as a LODA, before flight training in an experimental category aircraft.
The development is being lauded by pilot groups who have denounced the FAA policy of requiring LODAs for certain aircraft owners and flight instructors as onerous, confusing, and an abrupt reversal of decades of regulatory precedent." Continue reading Here.
12/16/2022 Aircraft Performance and Calculations - General Aviation Joint Steering Committee Safety Enhancement Topic - When it comes to aircraft performance, we usually think about variables like weight and balance, and takeoff and landing distance. But do you know what the most important variable is for determining aircraft performance? Download Printable Fact Sheet Here - Read More on Our Blog Here.
12/16/2022 FAA WEATHER CAMERA NETWORK EXTENDS ACROSS THE COUNTRY - WHERE DO YOU NEED A CAMERA? - AOPA - "The FAA is expanding its Weather Camera Program to more locations across the country. - The FAA started the weather camera program in 1999, establishing a constellation of cameras looking in multiple directions at three airports in northern Alaska. Today, that system has grown to over 230 cameras installed and operated by the FAA in Alaska, and 11 in Hawaii. The system also provides imagery from "third party" camera locations, with significant concentrations of cameras in Colorado and Montana." Continue.
12/16/2022 VOLUNTEER PILOTS: BALANCING SAFETY & COMPASSION - GUIDE YOUR PASSION WITH THIS SAFETY SPOTLIGHT - AOPA - INSTRUCTIONAL SAFETY COURSE - Certificate Upon Completion - You’ll review:
- The importance of an objective self-assessment
- Strategies to reduce personal stress
- The importance of being proficient vs being legal
- Why a conservative approach to a flight is good
- How to develop personal minimums
- Caring for passengers
- Passenger safety and comfort
- Briefing passengers before flight
- The need for extra commitment and professionalism
Visit the course by Clicking Here.
12/15/2022 More ‘Bird-Like’ Wing Now Under Development At Airbus - NEWS - From AVweb - "UpNext, the innovation division of Airbus, announced last week it plans to be flight testing a Cessna Citation VII testbed with “morphing wing” technology in 2024. The developmental concept takes an aircraft’s complement of control surfaces to a whole new level, well beyond flaps, ailerons, slats and vortex generators. Similarly to how a bird..." More Here.
12/15/2022 Aspen KASE - "Pilots Group Tackles Safety At Aspen" ARTICLE - AVweb - "Experienced pilots in Aspen have joined a task force to bring down the accident rate at the notorious local airport. Pitkin County commissioners approved formation of the task force, which is made up of 12 pilots who are familiar with the airport. There have been 40 serious general aviation accidents at Aspen in the last 40 years but none involving airliners." More Here.
12/13/2022 Joby, Aviation High School Partner On Electric Aviation Workforce Development - NEWS - From AVWEB - "Electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft developer Joby Aviation has partnered with New York’s Aviation High School to “prepare the next generation of aircraft maintenance technicians and aerospace leaders for career opportunities” in electric flight. Joby noted that 100 Aviation High School students have enrolled in its online Private Pilot Ground School course as part of the partnership. The partners will also be working to “integrate material on electric propulsion systems and other new technologies” into the school’s curriculum." Continue.
12/10/2022 Energy Errors - SAFETY INFO / TECHNIQUE - "...managing an airplane’s energy is a key concept in any attempt to understand various flight phases, obtain desired performance and put it where we want it, in high-speed cruise, on the glidepath or in the touchdown zone. But we don’t always get it right the first time, whether due to poor planning, distractions, mechanical issues, weather or inexperience. The AFH calls these occurrences “energy errors,” and further breaks them down into “total energy errors” and “energy distribution errors,” or some combination of the two. The sidebar below explains..." Learn More Here.
12/10/2022 VPorts Announces Creation of First International Electric AAM Corridor - NEWS - From Avionic International - "n a recent interview with Avionics International, Dr. Fethi Chebil, President and Founder of VPorts, explained, “The corridor is an identified airspace where we will do a safety risk assessment to demonstrate to regulators that flying an eVTOL within this corridor is safe.” Continue to Read.
12/10/2022 Knocking the Rust Off Your IFR Skills - PILOT SAFETY - From Flying - "Instrument flying is a perishable skill. Here's how to ensure you stay fresh. - Many pilots will tell you that the instrument rating is the hardest to get, and the skills learned in the process are the easiest to lose. If it has been a while since you exercised your instrument skills, you may want to take a few practice flights with an instructor before you head back into the clouds by yourself. Here are a few tips..." A pretty detailed set of tips! Continue Here.
12/06/2022 LOC Recoveries - SAFETY - From AVweb - "Unfortunately, every year a few of the pilots who went through that drill within the preceding 24 months lose control of their airplanes in flight. They either tear the wings off in a diving spiral, hit the ground in a diving spiral before the wings come off, stall and fail to return to controlled flight before hitting the ground. Otherwise, they demonstrate they cannot return the airplane to controlled flight prior to ground impact following an autopilot malfunction, flight control system malfunction or upset due to environmental factors. With loss of control one of the biggest single causes of accidents, it seems to me that it’s time to beef up unusual attitude training into something that might help pilots help themselves when the airplane is doing something weird..." Good Stuff to Read, Here.
12/05/2022 FAA Policy Allowing Airline Dispatcher Remote Work Under Fire - NEWS - From Flying - "FAA administrators face questions from lawmakers for allowing Republic and SkyWest dispatchers to work from home. - Lawmakers want the FAA to explain why it has allowed certain airlines to continue using a pandemic provision that allowed their dispatchers to work remotely. Representatives Peter DeFazio, the chair of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, and Rick Larsen, the chair of the House Aviation Subcommittee, wrote to acting FAA administrator Billy Nolen on Tuesday seeking clarification on the matter." Continue Here.
12/04/2022 FEDRAL AIR SURGEON'S MEDICAL BULLETIN VOL 57 #2 DECEMBER 2022
These ethical standards are typically contained in a code of ethics and require behavior and practice beyond the personal moral obligations of an individual. The typical profession enforces these ethical codes. Doctors and AMEs are professionals. The work of an AME directly contributes to the Safety of the National Airspace. The rules for AMEs are contained in the Guide for Aviation Medical Examiners and FAA Order 8000.95A, Designee Management Policy in Volume 2.
Recently, we have had some interesting AME activities. There are some simple things an AME can do to stay out of trouble with the FAA.
These items bear periodic review and even the most dedicated of us may be tempted to “help out an airman”. However, we owe it to our pilots, the flying public, and the Safety of the National Airspace to ensure they are healthy and meet standards on the day we examine them.
My thanks to each of you for what you do on behalf of the FAA.
By Eric A. Harmon and Theresa M. Sifuentes
Standardized training will play an increasingly significant and important role now and in the future of the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA’s) Aviator Medical Certification. Aerospace medicine is very dynamic science where general medicine complements an area of study where medical experts study and analyze the physiological and psychological impact of space on individuals. Aeromedical Physicians (APs) are the chief medical specialists that consider how the airborne environment affects the human body, including specific medical conditions and overall health. This is a very complicated, challenging, and dynamic science, which requires consistent application of medical standards to achieve consistent results.
Legal Instruments Examiners (LIEs) and Regional Program Analysts (RPAs or PAs) assist APs by evaluating, processing, and adjudicating aviators’ medical certification applications. These professionals employ the Code of Federal Regulations, Federal Air Surgeon policies, the Aviation Medical Examiners Guide, established office practices, and a sound employee development system. Employee development includes training, quality assurance, supervision, coaching, and mentoring; these developmental programs ensure LIEs and PAs consistently apply standards and render sound and consistent aeromedical decisions. Examiners and RPs may only render decisions within their scope of training and knowledge, including certifying applications meeting standards, requesting additional clinical information, referring to an AP for further view, or denying based on the tools, training, and system. They work hard to get to “yes”, allowing aviators to fly with a clear medical certificate or with a special issuance for specific risk-mitigated conditions.
Developing LIEs and RPA to render sound decisions consistently requires a dependable and consistent development program to train examiners to reproduce consistent results. Standardization and consistency are major concerns for the Federal Air Surgeon, who deliberately drives this mantra across all of Aerospace Aviation Medicine (AAM). Standardization and consistency is a focal point of her strategy in leading AAM into the future. That is why “Medical Certification of the Future lies with Standardized Training”, along with other tools such as the OneGuide Project—is another topic for another article.
In September of 2019, FAA’s Office of Aerospace Medicine, under the direction and leadership of Dr. Susan Buriak (AAM-400 Instructional Systems Specialist) and the oversight of Dr. David O’Brien (Medical Certification Division Manager), and an impressive team of experts formulated the new vision of standardized training for LIEs/PAs.
The Education Team conducted a needs assessment, surveying Examiners and PAs. Then, they developed the necessary objectives and strategy to build the new training platform. This dynamic platform was geared towards giving trainees an interactive and experiential learning experience. Throughout the education process, trainees experienced practical exercises, knowledge checks, job aids, and, “see it and do it” encounters to reinforce learning. Additionally, an experienced LIE Trainer mentored students as they progressed thru this self-paced program. Trainers use a rubric tool to assess trainees’ competency after completing each module and before proceeding to the next module. Currently, seven modules are available for use, an additional three are in production, and 23 modules will eventually be produced.
Quality assurance completes the implementation loop for standardized training. Measuring effectiveness, performance consistency, and reliability outcomes facilitate the individual and our teams to correct and improve, ensuring standardization.
These positive outcomes yielded the mantra “We are better together with the power of the collective!” It highlights the excellence when everyone within the system of Aviator Medical Certification works with one accord, to bring AAM’s vision into reality. A greater focus came about for measurement, the 4Cs: Competence, Confidence, Commitment, and Collaboration, the chief focus born from the LIE/PA Training Project, as we strive to develop STARs!
We began using the modules with new LIEs/RPS in February 2022. Thus far, trainee feedback is consistently favorable, including a 100-percent satisfaction rate at “end of module” evaluations. Additionally, new Examiners and RPAs are successfully accomplishing the required tasks and rubric measurements for each module. Here are a few comments from new examiners, RPAs, and seasoned thus far:
Standardized training is essential for the future of medical certification and to ensure AAM meets the FAA’s mission, “Provide the safest, most efficient aerospace system in the world!”
Simply put, the LIE/PA Training Modules standardized training is a program that helps examiners and RPAs build skills and develop good habits to consistently evaluate, process, and adjudicate aviators’ medical applications consistently to safely get to “yes.”
Eric A. Harmon serves as Manager for the Medical Certification Review and Appeals Branch of the Civil Aerospace Medical Institute (CAMI).
Theresa M. Sifuentes is a Legal Instruments Examiner Trainer for the Medical Certification Review and Appeals Branch of the Civil Aerospace Medical Institute (CAMI).
by Dr. Sue Jay, Ph.D., MPH, Research Physiologist
As commercial pilots and flight crews prepare for the busy holiday travel season and passengers make cross-country or transoceanic flights to see family and friends, now is a good time to review circadian rhythms in relation to air travel and how the successful management of circadian rhythms can help ensure a safe and (hopefully) less stressful travel experience.
What is a circadian rhythm? How can air travel cause circadian rhythm disruption (CRD) (a.k.a. “jet lag”)? What are the most common symptoms of CRD and how can they negatively affect pilot and flight crew performance? What are some practical strategies to mitigate the effects of CRD?
All in a Day. The circadian rhythm (Latin for circa = “around” and dies = “day”) is the internal biological clock that regulates body functions based on a slightly longer than 24-hour sleep/wake cycle. Many body functions such as temperature, heart rate, blood pressure, and digestive enzymes that regulate appetite fluctuate rhythmically throughout the day. These body functions are synchronized to each other and to the local environment by external cues called zeitgebers (German for “time givers”). Daylight is the strongest zeitgeber. When sunlight shines in your eyes, cells in the retina send signals to a specialized set of “pacemaker” cells deep in the brain that control the circadian rhythm. These pacemaker cells become synchronized to the natural day/night cycle and keep the body’s circadian rhythm “on time” with the local environment. Other zeitgebers include ambient temperature, physical activity, and social contact.
Long Flight + Multiple Time Zones = Circadian Rhythm Disruption. Any time the normal 24-hour circadian rhythm is altered there will be physiological and behavioral consequences. Crossing multiple time zones rapidly during air travel can lead to circadian rhythm disruption (CRD) – more commonly known as “jet lag”. It is not the distance traveled, but the speed. The time zone changes are too rapid for the body to adapt, and it can take several days for your circadian rhythm to readjust. CRD symptoms typically occur within a day or two of travel across at least two time zones and are likely to be more severe and last longer the more time zones crossed, especially when flying in an easterly direction. It is more difficult for your body to adjust to “losing time” when flying east than to “gaining time” when flying west. It usually takes one day to recover for each time zone crossed.
Symptoms of CRD. The most common symptoms of CRD are a disturbed sleep pattern (e.g., difficulty falling and staying asleep, late-night insomnia, early waking) and daytime fatigue with increased sleepiness. CRD-induced fatigue can negatively affect pilot flying skills and flight crew performance and become a serious safety-of-flight issue due to increased reaction time, decreased attention, impaired memory, a lack of focus or indifference to routine and/or critical tasks, and impaired decision-making. Other common CRD symptoms include headaches, decreased concentration and difficulty completing mental tasks, apathy or loss of interest, irritability, mood changes, loss of appetite and/or an “upset” stomach, and a general feeling of discomfort or feeling “unwell”.
Mitigation Strategies for CRD/Jet Lag. Circadian rhythm disruption is inevitable on long cross-country and transoceanic flights across multiple time zones, but there are things you can do to minimize the worse effects of CRD.
At the very least, CRD can make the first few days of a vacation miserable; at worst it can lead to acute or chronic fatigue for pilots and flight crew that is just as debilitating and a safety-of-flight risk as drugs and alcohol. Understanding circadian rhythms, how they can be disrupted by flying, and putting into practice CRD mitigation strategies can make the National Airspace System safer and your next trip more enjoyable.
For more information, see the FAA Brochure "Circadian Rhythm Disruption and Flying".
Dr. Sue Jay serves as a Physiologist for the Life Sciences Section of the Civil Aerospace Medical Institute (CAMI).
1. Moskvitch, K. How airline pilots beat jet lag. BBC Future. March 15, 2016. Accessed November 02, 2022. https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20160314-how-airline-pilots-beat-jet-lag
2. Jet lag disorder. Mayo Clinic. Updated October 02, 2020. Accessed November 02, 2022.https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/jet-lag/symptoms-causes/syc-20374027
3. Circadian rhythm disruption and flying. Federal Aviation Administration, Civil Aerospace Medical Institute, Aerospace Medical Education Division (AAM-400). Updated November 02, 2022. Accessed November 03, 2022.
“A Practical Article for your Airmen”
By J.R. Brown
Not all AMEs or Flight-Docs are pilots/operators. But when the subject of Vertigo and Spatial Disorientation comes up, it can be hard to explain in practical pilot terms. This article was written to be a resource for the doctor and pilot alike to address and understand this menace to safe flight.
The vestibular apparatus of the inner ear contains 3 interconnected semi-circular tubes. Each tube lies at an opposing 90-degree angle from the other. Each tube is filled with endolymph fluid. At the base of each canal is a mound of innervated hair cells. Normally, the hair cells respond to changes in head position or body movement (rotation) along the roll, pitch, and yaw planes; typically felt when we trip and fall.
As the canals move with up or down head motion, this causes the hair cells within the canal to deviate from their normal resting position. For example, when you voluntarily look down or up you move the “pitch” canal of the vestibular apparatus. As the head moves so do the canals, which result in movement, or bending, of the hair cells. The hairs bend because the endolymph fluid surrounding them lags behind the accelerating canal walls. As the hair cells are dragged thru the endolymph, they bend. This sends a signal from the hair cells to the brain indicating that you are either looking up or down.
When there is adequate light for us to see clearly, our visual system overrides the vestibular system in describing our physical orientation. But in low visibility, we transition from using fewer visual cues for orientation in favor of the cues coming from our inner ear. As an example, if while walking in the dark you trip and fall, your body will use the information from the vestibular system to prepare and protect you from injury by bracing and protecting your face and head. In the dynamic environment of aviation, the vestibular system falls short in reporting accurate information pertaining to the orientation of your aircraft. The vestibular apparatus works best in response to short, rapid movements or rotation.
In aviation, a slow and deliberate stimulation is typically applied to the vestibular apparatus. The change in head position doesn’t happen as rapidly as in the example of falling. While piloting, head position is chiefly tied to the position of the aircraft. For example, if the pilot pushes the nose of the aircraft over, it’s similar to falling forward. If roll is applied, the aircraft responds similarly to one falling over to one side. A pilot performing these maneuvers in VFR conditions won’t feel much sensation because the eyes override the input from the inner ear. But, when flying in IFR conditions, the sensations from the vestibular apparatus become more apparent. When these sensations fool you about your aircraft position, this is called Spatial Disorientation.
In aviation, stimulation of any of the 3 canals can be sustained for long periods of time. For example, a standard rate turn is 3 degrees per second. A 90-degree turn to a new heading will take 30 seconds. A sustained coordinated turn 90 degrees or more can create illusions of aircraft attitude, especially when in limited visibility/IFR.
As a pilot initiates a turn to a new heading while in limited visibility, they will initially feel the turn. They will continue to feel it strongly for about 10 – 15 seconds. That’s because the hair cells are bent and send a strong signal to the brain. But, as the turn continues, the pilot will start to “feel” as though they are turning less and less. They may actually feel the aircraft has leveled off. In reality, the aircraft is still turning in the same direction and at a standard rate. The reason for this illusion is that the fluid (which initially had no movement within the canal) is now beginning to move and catch up to the rotational speed of the pilot and aircraft. As the fluid begins to equal the rotational speed of the aircraft, the hair cells are bent less and less. Therefore, they falsely perceive a decrease in the turn of the aircraft.
Eventually, the brain senses the turn has stopped. The pilot who is IFR qualified will look at their instruments and understand what they feel is an illusion and ignore it. They trust their eyes by looking at, and BELIEVING their instruments. An IFR-rated pilot also knows not to move their head – only their eyes. Once they are on the correct heading, the pilot rolls out.
A VFR-qualified pilot would never intentionally fly into IFR conditions. But sometimes an inadequate weather briefing can find a pilot flying into unexpectedly bad weather. They may need to descend, or punch through a little weather, to get back to VFR conditions. VFR pilots finding themselves in the weather soon realize this is a whole new type of flying. They often realize it is beyond their skill set and turn 180 degrees back to the comfort of VFR flying conditions.
Learning about the illusions of Spatial Disorientation (SD), and the associated physiology, is only half the battle. Experience teaches the greatest lesson. There is a way you can experience SD up close and personal without jeopardizing your own safety. It’s called the General Aviation Trainer (GAT). This advanced simulator is used to demonstrate SD and vertigo while in a safe simulated flight environment. The GAT will initially put each pilot at a simulated altitude of 5,000 feet AGL and in IFR conditions. The pilot will receive heading instructions and the GAT will respond by spinning around the yaw axis in that direction. As the GAT turns, the pilot’s vestibular system will be stimulated accordingly and will mimic the illusions we have just learned about. For more information contact Airmen Education, AAM-400, at 405.954.4837.
Mr. Brown is a training specialist in Airmen Education, with the Civil Aerospace Medical Institute (CAMI).
By Zykevise Gamble
Healthcare avoidance can be a barrier to receiving the best medical care, but the behaviors and factors leading to healthcare avoidance are not always obvious. Healthcare avoidance behaviors can be subtle, and result in disengagement between healthcare providers and patients. It is important that AMEs, as well as pilots, are aware of these behaviors, and how they contribute not only to short-term safety concerns; but also, may impact long-term overall health and the longevity of a flying career.
According to research conducted by a team of Federal Aviation Administration scientists and physicians, these behaviors are common (Hoffman et al., 2022). In fact, over half of the pilots included in the study disclosed healthcare avoidance behavior. However, this is likely, not unique to pilots, and may be pertinent to many individuals in high-stakes occupations that require attestations of medical health, such as Air Traffic Controllers, professional drivers, physicians, or military service members.
Types of Healthcare Avoidance outlined in the study were:
1) Informal care
Informal care can be described as seeking out information or treatments from sources that lack the skill or expertise to provide an ongoing relationship of good care. For example, with the accessibility of the internet, pilots may utilize web searches to self-diagnose, without the intention to visit their physician. Well known to occur among physicians, but also occurs with pilots, is the tendency to seek “curbside” advice or suggestions from individuals who may be friends, relatives, or colleagues. However, taking this shortcut, without a proper, thorough, and unbiased assessment of a condition is risky. Physicians are trained to avoid this, but pilots may not be aware of this particular medical peril, and oftentimes get caught by this trap.
2) Discounting symptoms
Regardless of whether intentional or not, pilots, and others in high-risk occupations, are tempted not to report symptoms they perceive may prevent them from earning a living. While intentional concealment does sometimes occur, pilots in particular are extremely safety conscious. So why do we think the study showed this behavior was so common? Many human behaviors are not as intentional or conscious as they may seem to an outside observer, and the need to earn a living is a strong bias. This creates a tendency toward “discounting” symptoms. Many emergency room doctors know this story well: “it was only a twinge, so I ignored it at first”, in patients presenting after a delay, yet with clear symptoms of a heart attack. This is not an intentional concealment, rather discounting is a common clinical scenario.
3) Medical non-disclosure
This is related, but not exactly the same as not discounting symptoms. It is important that pilots, like all persons, receive recommended preventative health screenings, have accurateagnoses and appropriate treatments to ensure ongoing optimal health. Full disclosure of health history is necessary to accomplish this. FAA-designated medical examinations and other planned screening examinations, address not only current or immediate health concerns but also aim to identify the risk of future health concerns. Effective health screening promotes the identification and mitigation of risks and should help optimize future health. It may be tempting not to bother reporting health information, which may be perceived as not having immediate relevance. This may be detrimental to the assurance of a pilot’s long-term health, eventually with possible dire consequences; at best this risks impacting a career at an older age when experience and seniority often place the pilot in the most lucrative stage of their career, and in the most safety-critical roles.
4) Unauthorized prescription usage
Again this situation is more often unintentional than intentional. One of the most common situations is the use of over the counter medications, like allergy or cold medications, which are unsafe to take when performing pilot duties. Pilots may not mention medications prescribed for conditions that resolve after treatment, or medications that are only taken intermittently. For example, blood pressure medication, when after treatment, the blood pressure is normal, or a medication for headaches that is only used once or twice a year. The AME needs to review all medications, not only to advise the pilot on potential side effects and wait periods that ensure unsafe side effects have time to wear off but also to help assure the underlying condition being treated is safely managed. Pilots should be wary about stopping necessary medication solely for fear it may result in a denial of medical certification. There are many allowable medications and methods to achieve certification when using appropriate medications. Notably, the various “Conditions AMEs Can Issue” (CACI) include guidance on how some medications may be safely used when certifying pilots. A Special Issuance provides another pathway for pilots to safely fly while using medication to manage their condition(s), for example, those treated with SSRI antidepressants, or diabetes treated with oral medications or insulin.
The FAA has published an informational guide for pilots on medications and flying: www.faa.gov/go/pilotmeds. Furthermore, pilots are encouraged to discuss new, or changes in, medication with their AME even before a new examination is due.
The FAA Guide for Aviation Medical Examiners provides guidance on medications that are aero-medically unsafe, and for other medications and conditions, sound clinical judgment should be used when determining suitability for certification.
Most pilots will know to use the “IMSAFE” checklist that covers: Illness, Medication, Stress, Alcohol (and other drugs or medications), Fatigue/Food (i.e. enough sleep, nutrition, hydration), and Emotion. This is a useful preflight tool to help ensure safe health-related behaviors.
To sum up, optimal health is important for safety, and it is important for pilots to practice healthy behaviors. These behaviors are the groundwork for ensuring the longevity of a pilot’s career. Physicians, AMEs, and pilots are encouraged to fully understand barriers to optimal health, consider the perils of healthcare avoidance, and encourage safe and healthy behavior.
The FAA-required AME examinations are but one part of ensuring a pilot’s health and safety. Recommended health screenings, regular exercise, healthy diet, and sleep habits all make it more likely for a pilot to have a healthy, safe, and sustained career.
Mr. Gamble is a pre-med student at Howard University and completed this article as part of an internship with the Office of Aerospace Medicine
Hoffman WR, Aden J, Barbera RD, et al. Healthcare avoidance in aircraft pilots due to concern for aeromedical certificate loss: A Survey of 3765 Pilots. J Occup Environ Med. 2022; 64(4): e245-e248. doi:10.1097/JOM.0000000000002519
By Judith Frazier, MD, MBA
The Policy and Standards branch continues to focus on helping Aviation Medical Examiners (AMEs) more easily obtain the information they need to make a medical certification decision. Policy change and update highlights from May 2022 to October 2022 are below. The full list of changes is hyperlinked in the Archives and Updates section of the AME Guide.
COVID updates – simplified the Disposition table. Outpatient only and resolved, remember to note “COVID, Month and Year resolved. No ICU, no Sequelae.” All others, go to row B or C. The Novavax vaccine is allowed with the same 48 hour not fly after each injection.
1st Degree AV block – simplified the guidance. Need an evaluation if the PR interval is 300ms or longer. Decreased the cardiac conditions that must go to Cardiac Panel. This may get your pilots back in the air faster.
TIAs and completed stroke – require a two (2) year recovery period before consideration. Encourage your pilots to bring a copy of the Specifications for Neurologic Evaluation to their physician. It contains a list of all the info the FAA needs to make a decision on their case.
Situational Depression – decision tool may allow you to issue more pilots at time of your AME exam.
HIMS AMES – No forma HIMS cases will be accepted in paper format after January 1st, 2023. If you are not yet Huddle capable, contact 9-AAM-HIMS@faa.gov for training.
- Colitis CACI – expanded to allow Xeljanz, Entyvio and Humira
- Allergy Medication Table – expanded to show product formulation
- CBD and Controlled Substances page added
- Plaquenil Status report renamed (and easier to find)
- HIV PrEP, Apretude (cabotegravir) can be allowed
Check out the “AME ALERT” box each month in the AME Guide. It includes the “don’t miss” items.
Dr. Frazier is the Manager of the Policy and Standards Branch in the Office of Aerospace Medicine.
12/04/2022 Vertical Air Movement - WEATHER EXPLAINED - From AVweb - "Vertical motion in the atmosphere plays a big role in the weather you see and the weather troubles you encounter. - Heading into another winter season, our thoughts begin shifting to cold-weather flying hazards—fog, icing, and widespread precipitation. Most pilot training considers each of these factors individually. But most of them share a common cause, and it’s rooted in the weather patterns. Because of that, most pilots will be ahead of the game if they can identify some of those underlying factors. This article is designed to give experienced pilots a taste of the technical side of weather, so you can better understand how weather briefers think while gaining insight into complex aviation weather problems." Detailed Good Wx Info Here.
11/30/2022 Recent FAA Final Rule Enables BasicMed Holders New Privilege - NEWS - From AVweb - "With the stroke of a pen this month, Acting FAA Administrator Billy Nolen enabled an estimated 60,000 or more U.S. pilots to act as safety pilots. In the Nov. 16 signing of a new rule that focuses on requiring medical certificates for balloon pilots, other provisions were included that granted holders of BasicMed medical certificates the opportunity to fly as safety pilots, a right not previously held." Read More.
11/30/2022 Commercial Human Spaceflight - From FAA - Commercial human spaceflight is an exciting and rapidly growing segment of the space industry, with increasing numbers of operators and private individuals participating in these activities. - he commercial space transportation industry emerged in the 1990s and was primarily used to launch commercial satellites and transport cargo to the International Space Station (ISS). In just the last few years, growing interest in commercial space is realizing new possibilities for the industry including providing transportation to the ISS laboratories for research and space tourism. This rapidly growing industry is inspiring scientists, engineers, teachers, and a whole generation, to imagine entirely new possibilities for the future of space." Learn More about the Features and Opportunities Here.
11/30/2022 RAIDER FIVE ZERO ON FIRE: AN IMPOSSIBLE STORY OF SURVIVAL 2 MILES HIGH - "When a midair collision crippled their KC-130J, two Marine pilots fought to bring it safely to earth" - "Just 20 minutes earlier, Jones had been at the controls of Raider 50 as it refueled two Marine F-35 Lightnings, call signs Bolt 93 and Bolt 94. But in a moment of lost orientation, the pilot of Bolt 93 had smashed into the KC-130’s right wing, destroying his jet and crippling Raider 50 far beyond repair or recovery. For the next 13 minutes, Jones and then-Capt. Michael Wolff — Raider 50’s pilots — had coaxed, begged, and battled the dying tanker through an emergency descent and crash landing that ended with all eight Marines on board standing alone in the dry desert wind. - Both Wolff and Jones would be awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for their skill and the cascade of life-or-death decisions made in the descent." Read the story Here.
11/30/2022 Night Marginal Visual Flight Rules - From Aviation Safety Magazine - "The takeoff and departure flight phase can be one of the more risky among instrument procedures, especially at night in IMC aviation. On one hand, the pilot is abruptly transitioning from a presumably well-lit runway and airport environment to flying on instruments near terrain. On another hand, the airplane may not be up to the task, due to mechanical issues or misconfiguration by the pilot. And there’s also the immediate need to comply with whatever departure procedure is in use and join the en route airspace structure. - These challenges can confront a..." Continue Here.
11/30/2022 NBAA Urges FAA and DoT Action for Safe 5G Implementation - From Aviation Today - "For example, aircraft like the Boeing 757, 767, and even certain 737 models have radio altimeters that are deeply integrated with other systems, such as auto throttle, ground proximity warning, and thrust reversers. If the FAA requires changes to radio altimeters, it might be more difficult to make these revisions. While changing requirements could impact various aircraft types differently, this factor could cushion the impacts of 5G for the business aviation segment." Read what NBAA is proposing HERE.
11/24/2022 Experimental Fatals Jump - From AVweb - "Fatal accidents in experimental aircraft jumped about 25 percent last year compared with the previous year, and EAA says “focused efforts to enhance safety even further remain essential.” In a news release, the organization says the 56 fatal accidents in the year ending Sept. 30, 2022, was up from 42 in the previous 12 months. That’s still less than..." Finish reading Here.
11/24/2022 Europe Urges Automation, FAA Stresses Stick And Rudder - From AVweb - "As European regulators began lobbying the International Civil Aviation Authority (ICAO) to develop automation standards that will allow single-pilot airliner operations, the FAA issued an advisory circular that stresses CRM and maintaining manual flying skills. The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) filed a working paper with ICAO on Monday asking that the structure be developed for..." More Here.
11/21/2022 DISASTROUS COURSE OF ACTION - A MERIDIAN LANDS ON THE WRONG RUNWAY - Mid Air Collision at North Las Vegas - AOPA Early Analysis - "People knew them as a friendly couple, a chatty team in the cockpit, with her often working the radios when he flew the left seat of their Piper Malibu Meridian. Inbound from the north, they were cleared to land Runway 30L, flew overhead the field, and began a fast, swooping, left 240-degree descending turn to final.
Meanwhile, on Runway 30R, an instructor worked out a pilot in a Cessna 172, executing multiple touch-and-go landings, staying in a right pattern. The 172 requested and was cleared a short approach for 30R. Pilots report this as typical operations for VGT: local pattern work on Runway 30R with transient operations on the longer Runway 30L. VIDEO and STORY Here.
11/21/2022 FAA Extends Aircraft Re-Registration Period - Info from AVweb - "The FAA will issue a Direct Final Rule extending the registration interval for general aviation aircraft and the new seven-year duration applies to all GA aircraft. Until 2010, aircraft registrations lasted for the life of the aircraft but that resulted in a lot of inaccurate and ghost registrations on the books. In 2010, the agency made all operators re-register their planes and set a three-year limit for re-registration. The alphabets argued that was too..." Continue Here.
11/18/2022 Medical Requirements for Commercial Balloon Pilots - The FAA adopted a final rule this week requiring commercial hot-air balloon pilots to hold medical certificates when flying paying passengers. The rule mandates a second-class medical certificate, the same standard required for other commercial pilots.
Previously, commercial balloon pilots were exempt from the medical requirement. In the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018, Congress directed the FAA to revise the medical certification standards for commercial balloon pilots. The rule also addresses a NTSB recommendation that the FAA remove the exemption. For more information, see the press release here.
11/18/2022 Industry Drug and Alcohol Testing Program - Are you keeping our skies safe? - Drug and alcohol testing of safety-sensitive aviation employees helps protect public safety and keep our skies safe. Testing is required by the Omnibus Transportation Employees Testing Act of 1991 and by DOT and FAA regulations (49 CFR part 40 and 14 CFR part 120).
The Drug Abatement Division oversees the aviation industry's compliance with the drug and alcohol testing law and regulations. We accomplish this by performing on-site inspections, providing guidance to companies, individuals, contractors, and service agents, and establishing policies and procedures to increase the program's effectiveness. We also develop and implement regulations for DOT/FAA drug and alcohol testing.
If you can't find the answer here, please visit our Contact Us page and ask for the help you need.
11/16/2022 Aviation Coalition Asks FAA for More Time on 5G Retrofits - NEWS - From AINonline - "A broad aviation industry OEM and association coalition is asking the U.S. government for more time to implement radar altimeter retrofits required to defeat potential 5G C-band cellular interference. In a joint letter sent this morning to top federal officials—including the heads of the U.S. Department of Transportation and the FAA—the coalition said the deadlines to retrofit the nation’s entire fleet of regional and cargo aircraft with upgraded radar altimeters (RAs) by December 2022 and the overall deadline of July 2023 was not achievable and requested that signal interference mitigations be extended through the end of 2023." Read More Here.
11/16/2022 On November 12, 2022 Robinson Helicopter Company bid a final farewell to its founder, Frank Robinson. Robinson, 92, passed away peacefully at his Rolling Hills, California home. Read more at https://helihub.com/2022/11/13/frank-robinson-1930-2022/
11/15/2022 How The Wind Blows - WEATHER ED - From AVweb - "For pilots, no matter how clear the skies, we always seem to be dealing with the wind. So, let’s look at wind from the perspective of an aviation meteorologist—where it comes from, what goes into forecasting it, and even some tips to help keep your flying safer." Weather You Need to Know About! Here.
11/14/2022 Update to “Cold Temperature Airports” Program - Purpose: This publication updates the Cold Temperature Airports program with the addition of the Initial Segment to the Digital Products List found at http://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/flight_info/aeronav/digital_products/dtpp/search/.
Background: The Cold Temperature Airports program is adding the Initial Segment to the list of affected segments that may need correcting during cold temperature operations. See Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM), Paragraphs 7-3-5/6, All Segments Method, for information to calculate a correction on the Initial Segment.
In response to recognized safety concerns over cold weather altimetry errors in 2010, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) completed a risk analysis to determine if instrument approach procedures set forth in Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations Part 97 pose a greater risk during cold temperature operations. The study led the FAA to publish a Notice to Airmen Publication (NTAP), which provided pilots with a list of airports, affected segments and procedures needed to correct published altitudes at or below a published temperature limitation.
The FAA no longer publishes the NTAP. Instead, on July 16, 2020, the FAA published the Cold Temperature Airports procedure information in chapter 7 of the AIM, including the procedures needed to correct published altitudes at or below a published temperature limitation. The FAA will publish a list of the airports and affected segments on its digital products search page at http://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/flight_info/aeronav/digital_products/dtpp/search/. The updated list is effective September 8, 2022, and remains in effect until August 10, 2023.
Pilots are responsible for applying altitude corrections and, pursuant to § 91.123, must advise Air Traffic Control (ATC) when these corrections are to be made on any segment other than the final segment. ATC is not responsible for making any altitude corrections and/or advising pilots that an altitude correction is required at a cold temperature airport.
Recommended Action: Operators of aircraft should:
1. Understand the procedure required at Cold Temperature Airports.
2. Operators conducting international flights should review if and how relevant foreign States (e.g., Canada) address this issue.
Contact: Direct questions or comments regarding this publication to the Flight Technologies and Procedures Division at (202) 267-8838.
11/12/2022 Study Explores Emotional Intelligence In U.S. Pilots - EDUCATION - From AVweb - "A recently published study found significant differences in trait emotional intelligence (trait EI) in pilots compared to the general U.S. population. For the study, a control group was matched with a pilot group at a 2:1 ratio based on factors including age, gender, ethnicity and educational background. The results indicated that pilots scored consistently lower than their counterparts in global trait EI, as well as three of its four factors: well-being, emotionality and sociability. For the fourth factor, self-control, no significant differences were identified. - “Overall, the findings show that pilots tend to have..." Read the rest of the article Here.
11/12/2022 New FAA Safety Briefing: Tips to Reduce Risk in All Phases of Flight - The November/December 2022 issue of FAA Safety Briefing magazine explores tips and best practices that help pilots find ways to avoid the “danger zones” where accidents can occur. - Articles highlight system safety and risk management in the context of persistent accident factors during preflight; taxi; takeoff and departure; maneuvering flight; and approach and landing. - Feature Articles
How Do You Do? - Practical Ways to Practice Risk Management
Tips for Perfect Preflight Prep - Why Better Preflight Preparation is Paramount to Safe Flight
Top Six Taxi Tips - How to Improve Your Ground Game
Don’t Try This
at Home on the Runway - Common Take Off and Departure Errors
Shiny Side Up! - Avoiding Loss of Control
It's All in Your Approach - Top Tips to Fine Tune a Final Approach and Landing -
11/09/2022 Inside the ‘Spruce Goose’ - INFO - From Flying - "FLYING takes you on a must-do tour inside the iconic Hughes Flying Boat. - On Friday, November 4, 2022, I was back, and face to face with one of the most iconic and impressive feats of aeronautical engineering ever achieved. Up until that moment, the largest airplane I had been physically close to was a Lockheed C-5 Galaxy that Dad had taken me to see when I was a kid. For the record, the Spruce Goose wingspan bests the C-5 by approximately 97 feet, and the tail of the wooden behemoth is over 100 feet tall. I submit the exclamation was..." Photos and Story Here.
11/09/2022 Say Goodbye to the Traditional AIRMET - WEATHER NEWS - From Flying - "The sunset of the textual version comes in the wake of mass acceptance of graphical AIRMETs. - It has been well over a decade since the FAA decided to abandon the traditional alphanumeric code (TAC) airmen’s meteorological information (AIRMET) when forecasters at the Aviation Weather Center (AWC) began to generate the graphical AIRMET (G-AIRMET) on an operational basis on October 1, 2008. At that time, it was determined that the time-smeared TAC AIRMET, or more simply the “legacy AIRMET,” and its outlook was sorely outdated and needed a facelift with a new..." Continue Here.
11/07/2022 Missing The Miss - IFR INSTRUCTION & SPATIAL DISORIENTATION - From AVweb/Aviation Safety - "Yet pilots can’t seem to stop having accidents while flying a miss. So we took a look at some recent NTSB accident reports to learn more about how pilots are missing the miss. They seem to break down into two main categories, and we’ve supplied an example of each." Find Out More Here.
11/07/2022 Sikorsky Demonstrates Logistics Missions With Autonomous Black Hawk - PR NEWS - From AVweb - "Lockheed Martin subsidiary Sikorsky and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) have completed their first demonstration for the U.S. Army of logistics and rescue missions using an uncrewed “optionally piloted” Black Hawk helicopter. The demonstration simulated missions including an 83-mile autonomous medical resupply carrying 400 units of real and simulated blood, delivery of a 2,600-pound external load attached to a 40-foot sling, and rerouting mid-flight to evacuate a casualty. The flights, which were performed by a Black Hawk equipped with Sikorsky’s MATRIX autonomy technology, aimed to “show how existing and future piloted utility helicopters could one day fly complex missions in reduced crew or autonomous mode.” Read More Here.
11/07/2022 PR NEWS - For those who desire to search toward the sky for success, this story should serve as an inspiration and a testament that helps to prove Whiteman is a valuable community asset that needs to stay nurtured, polished, and kept shiny like any other prized jewel.
10,000th Free Airplane Flight for Kids
to be Celebrated on November 26th at Whiteman Airport
The 10,000th young person is to get a free “Young Eagles” airplane ride from the pilots of Chapter 40 of the Experimental Aircraft Association based at Whiteman Airport will be on Saturday, November 26, 2022.
There should be about 75-85 flights provided on that day to kids between 8 through 17. All kids are invited to discover the gift of flight, and the rides are entirely paid for by the pilots.
The “Young Eagles” is an EAA National Program, and Chapter 40 has been providing these complimentary introductory flight experiences on the 4th Saturday of every month at San Fernando Valley’s Whiteman Airport since 1992 (except on Christmas Day or Eve).
EAA Chapter 40 is arranging a VERY special flight for the lucky youngster. Details will be forthcoming.
Caveat: we will not fly if the weather that day is not safe. The alternate date if that happens will be Dec 17.
For More Information about this story, I invite those who decide to build rather than tear down to contact Dave Kolstad - Chapter 40 Young Eagles Coordinator - D_kolstad@yahoo.com YoungEaglesDay.org - Webmaster
11/07/2022 Why Twilight Can Be a Complicated Time for Pilots - "Do you know the difference between civil twilight, nautical twilight and astronomical twilight? - Twilight is a complicated thing. It is partitioned into three zones. There is civil twilight, which lasts from sunset to when the center of the sun is 6 degrees, or about 12 solar diameters, below the horizon and things can no longer be clearly seen.
Then comes nautical twilight, which ends when the center of the sun is 12 degrees below the horizon and a seaman no longer discerns the break between the western sea and the sky. Finally, astronomical twilight ends when the sun is 18 degrees below the horizon, leaving the sky black enough for the inspection of distant galaxies. - The sun travels 15 degrees across the sky each hour, but because..." Continue Here.
11/06/2022 Under Pressure - ALTIMETER GROUNDSCHOOL - From AVweb - "QNH, ALSTG, low pressure, high pressure... The atmosphere exerts a highly variable pressure on us, but we need to accurately know that pressure to stay safe. - In this article, we’ll take an introductory look at barometers, pressure, and get a better look at where QNH, QFE, and other values come from. If you’ve found them mysterious or confusing, this article is for you. - The Basics Of Pressure - The atmosphere is made up of a large volume of gas, consisting of nitrogen, oxygen, argon, and a number of trace elements. We often slip into the mindset of thinking that the air floats freely..." Read and Learn Here.
11/06/2022 History of Agricultural Aviation Reveals a Series of Turning Points - INFO - From Flying - "Industry’s growth has been marked by interesting watershed moments. - On August 3, 1921, a Curtiss JN-6 “Jenny” took off from the now defunct McCook Field in Dayton, Ohio, and headed to the nearby town of Troy, where an infestation of catalpa sphinx moths threatened to destroy a grove of catalpa trees. The trees were valuable for their wood, which made good railroad ties, telephone poles, and fence posts. - John Macready, an Army test pilot who flew fighters in World War I, was at the controls. In the rear cockpit was Etienne Dormoy, a research engineer with the Army Signal Corps who had modified the Jenny for this experimental assignment. - As Macready skimmed the treetops, Dormoy turned a crank on a..." Finish reading Here.
11/06/2022 AOPA Airport Support Network - "Pressure on public and privately owned airports continues to mount. This pressure takes many forms, including curfews, noise restrictions, lack of improvements, residential encroachment, and even calls to close the airport. The AOPA Airport Support Network provides the vehicle for AOPA members to work in conjunction with AOPA staff to preserve and protect airports across the United States. Our goal is to have an Airport Support Network (ASN) Volunteer at every public use airport in the United States.
- Engage with airport management and local elected officials
- Promote the airports value in the Community
- Protect America’s Community Airports
The new AOPA Western Regional Manager (Jared Yoshiki) coordinate it. Should you wish to volunteer or find out if your airport has a representative you might Start HERE. For an AOPA article on the subject of local airport advocacy (so important today!) - you can discover it Here.
11/06/2022 Flight Check — Please Keep Your Distance! - Who We Are, What We Do, and How It Matters to You - NAS INTEGRITY CHECK -INFO - From FAA SAFETY BROEFING - "The first thing I learned is that flight inspection involves way more than ensuring the accuracy of an ILS. Flight inspection is the airborne inspection of all space and ground-based instrument flight procedures and the validation of the integrity of the electronic signals in space transmitted from navigation systems. “Validating signals in space” is far removed from the origins of our air navigation system. The U.S. Postal Service developed lighted airway beacons (bonfires) and placed them 10 miles apart to aid nighttime navigation in the 1920s. Responsibility for the airway system was then transferred to..." A "good read" - Webmaster - Continue reading Here.
11/05/2022 New AME Minute Covers Cancer Treatments - In the latest Pilot Minute video, FAA Federal Air Surgeon Dr. Susan Northrup covers how the FAA is approaching new treatments for cancer. While pilots with many common forms of cancer can be issued a medical certificate, the FAA is using a new approach with an expanded network of specialists for those with less common or more advanced cancer. Watch the video here or see the full Pilot Minute playlist.
11/05/2022 The Heat is On – Cold Weather Flying Tips - As winter draws near, bundling up for cold weather flying will soon be a reality for many pilots. Besides breaking out the gloves and winter jacket, you’ll also want to consider how the cold can affect your performance in flight. In the article, “The Heat is On” in the Sep/Oct 2022 issue of FAA Safety Briefing, author Dr. Leo Hattrup explores some impairments caused by the cold, and offers advice and tips on how to be prepared and fly warm. Read the article here: https://medium.com/faa/the-heat-is-on-the-importance-of-staying-warm-2b3c8b710691.