Free Seminar Series
Your free seminar series is designed to provide valuable airman safety seminars on important aviation topics. These seminars are completely free and are located in the WINGsReality EDU Learning Management System (LMS). If you do not yet have a user with us, simply click on the “Free Seminar Series” button below. There you will create a user account, confirm by email, and enjoy all of your seminars anytime and anywhere!
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Controlled Flight into Terrain
Controlled Flight into Terrain (CFIT) accidents account for 17 percent of all general aviation fatalities. More than half of these CFIT accidents occurred during instrument meteorological conditions (IMC). Because a single-piloted, small GA aircraft is vulnerable to the same CFIT risks as a crewed aircraft but with only one pilot to perform all of the flight and decision-making duties, that pilot must be better prepared to avoid a CFIT type accident. In some cases, a GA pilot may be more at risk to certain CFIT type accidents because the pilot does not have the company management or government oversight that a corporate or commercial operator may be exposed to.
Pilots and Medication
Impairment from medication, particularly over the counter (OTC) medication, has been cited in a number of accidents in general aviation. In a 2011 study from the FAA’s CAMI Toxicology Lab, drugs/medications were found in 570 pilots (42%) from 1,353 total fatal pilots tested. Most of the pilots with positive drug results, 511 (90%), were flying under 14 CFR Part 91.
Focusing on establishing and maintaining a stabilized approach and landing is a great way to avoid experiencing a loss of control. A stabilized approach is one in which the pilot establishes and maintains a constant angle glidepath towards a predetermined point on the landing runway. It is based on the pilot’s judgment of certain visual clues, and depends on the maintenance of a constant final descent airspeed and configuration.
More than 25% of general aviation fatal accidents occur during the maneuvering phase of flight — turning, climbing, or descending close to the ground. The vast majority of these accidents involve buzzing attempts and stall/spin scenarios (half of which are while in the traffic pattern).
Fly the Aircraft First
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 lack of transition training has been cited as a causal factor in many GA accidents. Accidents frequently result from pilots being unprepared for challenges presented by the new, or different, aircraft they are flying. Even when pilots are legally certificated to operate aircraft within a specific category and class, significant differences can exist among different types of aircraft within that category and class — thus necessitating the need for effective transition training.
Best Glide Speed and Distance
The General Aviation Joint Steering Committee (GAJSC) has determined that a significant number of general aviation fatalities could be avoided if pilots were better informed and trained in determining and flying their aircraft at the best glide speed while maneuvering to complete a forced landing.
Smart Cockpit Technology
The General Aviation Joint Steering Committee (GAJSC) has determined that “smart cockpit technology” in the form of automated checklists for normal and emergency operations, predictive aircraft performance, and performance monitoring, might reduce the number of system/component failure general aviation accidents.
Emergency Procedures Training
The General Aviation Joint Steering Committee (GAJSC) has identified a number of fatal general aviation accidents that occurred following powerplant failure. Mismanagement of light, twin-engine airplanes in single-engine operations was of particular concern. The GAJSC believes that scenario-based training in emergency procedures will be effective in reducing these kinds of mishaps.
The General Aviation Joint Steering Committee (GAJSC) has identified a number of fatal general aviation accidents that were caused by attempting flight in aircraft that were undergoing maintenance and not yet returned to service. This safety enhancement suggests adopting lock out/tag out methodology to ensure pilots are aware of un-airworthy aircraft conditions.