October 13, 2005
The FAA is taking AOPA's suggestion to talk to the users about perceived problems with the MU-2 twin turboprop. Last month the agency proposed yet another review of the aircraft - that following congressional pressure after two crashes in Colorado.
But AOPA argued that so far the evidence seemed to suggest a training or maintenance issue, not a problem with the aircraft itself. The association suggested the agency talk to owners and operators and volunteered to host such forums.
The FAA is now in the process of holding select user meetings; the first was last week with MU-2 training providers. The agency also will meet next week with AOPA, an MU-2 owners group, and other associations to discuss potential solutions to the MU-2 accident rate and to identify best practices for the owner-flown MU-2s. The agency also has sent a letter to all MU-2 owners and operators suggesting they consider type-specific training for both pilots and mechanics. The FAA noted that "performance expectations and control techniques common in other turboprop twins do not necessarily transfer to flying the MU-2."
Because the MU-2 uses spoilerons rather than ailerons for roll control, engine-out technique is somewhat different than it is for most twin-engine aircraft. See " Used Turbine Review: Mitsubishi MU-2s."
October 13, 2005
Collaboration between the German government, academia, and airplane manufacturers may make future aircraft cabins more protective of pilots and passengers. The Safety Box team plans to apply auto racing technology to general aviation.
A father and his 14-year-old son were helping another pilot ferry a newly purchased aircraft from California to their home field in Virginia. The three made an overnight stop in Albuquerque before flying on to Illinois for fuel. But shortly after they parked the aircraft in Marion, Ill., they were approached by as many as 18 uniformed and non-uniformed law enforcement officers who came running toward the airplane.
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