April 26, 2011
AOPA ePublishing staff
In the wake of the Los Angeles City Council’s decision to seek legislation to close flight schools at Santa Monica Municipal Airport and alter departure paths at the airport, AOPA President Craig Fuller met with the airport support group Friends of Santa Monica Airport on April 20.
Pilots volunteered to help support Santa Monica Municipal Airport.
“Santa Monica and this group represent the hope for general aviation,” Fuller told more than 100 group members at Santa Monica Aviation. “We will work with you, stand with you so that the airport will continue to function as is. When we fight hard, define clear objectives, and stand together, we will protect the freedom to fly.”
AOPA has worked to ward off many threats at Santa Monica Municipal Airport, including numerous environmental studies and attempts to ban Category C and D aircraft. The Friends of Santa Monica Airport group formed in 2010 to help build support for the facility and combat continued attacks.
Fuller shared steps that the group can take to help build support for the airport in the local area. Involving opinion leaders and educating the public on the value general aviation and the airport to Santa Monica and Southern California are critical, Fuller said. He also suggested the group host airport events to bring the community to the airport and encouraged building a support base through social media resources such as Facebook.
AOPA offers free online resources for pilots and airport support groups to use to promote their fields and demonstrate the value of their airport.
Environmental groups are asking the EPA to take another look at avgas even as a government-industry program moves closer to finding unleaded alternatives.
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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