Aviation Safety


Aviation Safety

Proactive group for those interested in keeping the industry the safe.

Website: http://karlenepetitt.com
Members: 56
Latest Activity: Mar 21, 2014

Discussion Forum

Holiday Stress and Distraction

Started by Karlene K Petitt. Last reply by Karlene K Petitt Dec 16, 2011. 4 Replies

Happy Holidays everyone! The previous two weeks my local AME has written two related posts on stress and distraction during the holiday season. These might be good topics of discussion for human…Continue

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Comment by Karlene K Petitt on January 30, 2012 at 3:03pm

Looks like a great plane and fun time!

Comment by David LoPresti on January 30, 2012 at 2:49pm

Be sure to come to our First Saturday Fly in this weekend.  We will have a great time.  LoPresti First Saturday

Comment by David LoPresti on January 30, 2012 at 2:36pm

Here is one of the best safety upgraded for Citation.  Below are before and after photos of the newest BoomBeam HID landing light

Comment by Karlene K Petitt on January 29, 2012 at 9:25pm

Brolair, thanks for the great link. Pete and Adam, you're so right about it reducing workload and in theory makes flying easier, and thus safer. So true! The problem is when it fails. Both from a lack of proficiency, and the lack of "knobology" ... love that. In my world it's "buttonology." But the point is, when you don't use it... you lose it. And when we're not studying, learning and having to think while you fly... it's very hard to remember how it all works, when something major happens. But mostly, having the skills to do it without depending upon the technology.

Personally... I love the magic. It does everything it's supposed to. But we do need more initial training and practicing with the failures. And the pilots in my world need to click off the magic and hand fly the plane. So when they have to, they can.

Thanks for your great comments!

Comment by Brolair International on January 29, 2012 at 6:55pm

A truck driver on automation, training and experience.


Comment by Pete Demers on January 29, 2012 at 1:59pm

Automation (if used properly) can certainly make flying safer like Adam points out through reduction in workload and allowing better task management by the pilot. Taking it a step further, the addition of datalinked weather and traffic information systems filtering down to GA also gives pilots more information which is easier to process in order to make better informed decisions.

However, there are a few downsides. Adam brings up the first; over-emphasis on the technology vs. one's personal flying skills.  With the absence of the technology, the pilot can be overwhelmed by task management and may be struggling with basic flying skills.  As a CFII, I have personally witnessed a pilot going for an Instrument Proficiency Check struggle through hand-flying a hold and ILS approach.  Faced with the simulated autopilot failure, the basic skills of instrument scan and tracking began to fall apart resulting in a performance that flirted with the tolerances of the PTS.

The second "gotcha" is not piloting proficiency, but system proficiency. The modern avionics packages found in today's GA planes are amazing and loaded with some wonderful features, if the pilot/operator knows how to use and access them.  If you are behind the curve on the "knobology" the systems can be distracting and divert our attention away from more critical operations.  The best solution here is to fall back to fundamental piloting skills if the programming is getting the best of the pilot otherwise; we fall back to the first gotcha above.

To answer the original question, yes, automation can and does enhance aviation safety.  However, the pilot/operator must remain proficient with its operation and limitations as well as maintaining proficiency in basic piloting skills to achieve safety benefits otherwise, they can actually hinder safety.  It’s no longer just stick and rudder skills, but stick, rudder, and programming skills.

Comment by Adam Miller on January 29, 2012 at 10:47am

I believe it will make things safer as it reduces the workload in the cockpit - as long as when it fails the crew are proficient in flying without the technology, especially in low time pilots where they have never flown without it.

Comment by Karlene K Petitt on January 29, 2012 at 10:31am

What are your thoughts on automation and the future? Will this improve safety? Or just potentially create more dangers as we become lulled into complacency? 

Comment by Brolair International on December 19, 2011 at 3:05pm

No problem, Karlene. Check out the Air Traffic Management group and feel free to open a discussion.  I would welcome your comments.

Comment by Karlene K Petitt on December 19, 2011 at 9:13am

Thank you all for your comments! Have a wonderful week and a Happy Holiday!!!


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