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Feature Article: Would You Believe That You Can...

  • Be a non-instrument rated pilot and fly in VFR condition of top of overcast at night in a VFR only aircraft
  • Fly with VFR minimums only one mile
  • Fly into a thunderstorm
  • Fly into icing since there is no FAR limitation for flight into icing conditions
  • Avoid all thunderstorms by remaining very VFR
  • Depart a runway as short as minimum distance in POH
  • Join the night frequency of accidents club just by flying into the ground
  • Survive in a twin by flying it just as you would a single.
  • Fly safer by training for safety in a specific aircraft.
  • Match experience by getting realistic training
  • Increase the value of experience by getting a lot quickly.
  • Increase the risk of flight as weather conditions deteriorate.
  • Avoid midair collisions by avoiding airports and VORs while flying above 5000' AGL.
  • Survive most all engine failures by making a controlled landing type crash.
  • Increase your chances of an accident by flying out of the c.g. than over-weight.
  • Control your flying fate.

    How Flying Plays with Your Mind

  • Flying has induced high level of personal anxiety, confusion, and inability to process information.
  • Under stress even the intelligent have trouble performing two tasks at the same time.
  • Usually when two tasks are presented together the tendency is to perform one while sacrificing the other.
  • The task having the greatest threat focuses the attention but over time the stress fades to a moderate level.
  • Pilots can focus attention on low and moderate threats but the focus on high threats fade quickly.
  • High stress attention levels cannot be maintained for long since attention turns to peripheral cues.
  • A threat that creates anxiety, learned helplessness and inability to perform must be trained and retrained.
    so that rational decision-making and effective information processing makes coping possible.
  • Such an anxiety threat cannot be allowed to become chronic because hyper-vigilance becomes focused.
  • Typical aviation stress areas subject to focused hyper-vigilance are turbulence, landings, stalls, and radio
  • It takes an instructor with high perceived expertise, trustworthiness and authority to reduce the stress.
  • As an instructor I will work on only one stress factor at a time. Once resolved to an acceptable level, I use it as the kite to which I can tie others as a tail. Does this work? Not always and not every time.
  • The student who becomes chronically anxious, unable to see progress and frustrated by uncontrollable events needs to be returned to work on basic skills. Complex performance rests on a bed of basics.
  • It is the weak basics functioning on an illusion of mastery that existed in the past that needs refreshing.
  • The instructor must assuage student guilt feeling and insecurity by building a constructive problem-solving recovery program.
  • Beating a student with a sense of failure with repeated failed lessons will impair the student's innate ability and motivation.
  • The student is under a terrorist like attack by the unknown evils residing just outside his knowledge and performance base that poise credible threats that will cause him to:
  • feel helpless and become unwilling to effect solutions
  • adopt a sense of hopelessness toward any positive change
  • disrupt his previous study and flying schedules
  • have feelings of suspicion, anxiety and fear about events only in his mind.
  • What the student should do is to build a support system via other pilot acquaintances, internet news groups and family.
  • Second, the student should work with his instructor to design an action plan of things to do that will emphasize any positive aspects and self-efficacy. You do not dig your way out of a hole.

    Taking Chances

  • We have no means to measure the willingness of an individual to take risks.
  • We have no means to measure the amount of luck an individual will have in a given situation.
  • It is recurrent training that will expose a pilot to the latest additions and retractions in the flying process.

    Driving vs Flying
    If they taught people to drive like they do to fly you would have to:
  • Know how to deal with (or avoid) every kind of weather.
  • Know every system in your car, and how it works.
  • Be able to read a map, and memorize every symbol on it to make sure you never get lost.
  • Accurately estimate fuel usage (to the minute), understand the optimum power settings for duration
    and range, be able to predict varying performance based on weather and temperature variables.
  • Memorize the motor vehicle laws.
  • Check your tires and brakes prior to driving.
  • Practice a tire blowout at 70 mph.
  • Get special training to drive in bad weather.
  • Get a checkout in any new vehicle you wanted to drive and if it was a high performance vehicle get
    even more training and a signoff from an instructor saying you are ok to drive that type of car.
  • Take a driving test every 2 years to make sure you are still a safe driver.
  • Must have less than a .04 blood alcohol level and not be within 8 hrs of your last drink.
  • Pass a medical exam every 2yrs if you are over 40 and every 3 years if you are younger.
  • Simulate a crash from a bridge into a lake, and memorize the procedures that would afford the best
    chance of survival and escape.
  • And then...they'd let you go around the block for a couple months, and if that worked out ok, you'd be
    able to go to the next town with the instructor's written permission.
  • After a time, you'd take a written examination to demonstrate your knowledge of the above, and if that
    worked out ok, you'd get to spend hours with an examiner to deem you safe to carry passengers.
  • After all that, you'd be sharing the road with others who've gone through the same training as you did.
  • Despite all this, once in a while an accident would still occur.

Last Modified September 22, ©2019 TAGE.COM

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