Cold Weather Resources
Cold temperatures, low clouds, and frozen precipitation present unique challenges, but don’t let this discourage you. Get prepared now with award-winning courses so the cold weather won’t ground you. Test your skills with several ASI safety quizzes and before your next flight; download this handy kneeboard-formatted cold weather operations checklist. Download the Kneeboard >>>
Whether it's cold where you live or you're just planning on flying to chillier climates, join AOPA Foundation president Bruce Landsberg and panelists John Ponts(Pilot, "Flying Wild Alaska") and Andy Marosvari (ATC, Boise Tower) for a wide-ranging discussion of the ways cold weather can affect your flying. From practical matters like starting and taxiing to potentially life-saving issues like icing and runway braking action, we'll cover what you need to know to stay safe when the mercury drops. Sponsored by AOPA Term Life Insurance provided by ING. Register for the Webinar >>>
Ride along for this chilling re-creation and analysis of an accident that occurred when the pilot of a Cirrus SR22 encountered unforecast icing over the Sierra Nevada mountains (approx. 20-30 minutes). Take the minicourse >>>
Experience the chilling reality of an ill-fated VFR flight from Chicago to Raleigh, North Carolina. Cross-Country Crisis examines the pilot's actions as weather deteriorates and fuel becomes critical in this gripping video-recreation (approx. 14 minutes). Take the minicourse >>>
Too many pilots underestimate the dangers of precipitation and icing—and an alarming number add to the accident statistics as a result. Take this course to learn how to recognize the hazards of precipitation and ice, develop a strategy for avoidance, and react appropriately if you encounter unexpected conditions (approx. 45 minutes). Take the Course >>>
Low ceilings and restricted visibilities are aviation's deadliest killers. With a little knowledge, you can minimize the risk these conditions pose (approx. 45-60 minutes).
Take the course >>>
Do you understand the “why” behind the weather? Find out about the large-scale forces that drive the weather, and learn how to put that knowledge to work before your next flight (approx. 45-60 minutes). Take the course >>>
Is there rising terrain after departure? You better know local departure procedures and your aircraft performance numbers when taking off in the mountains at night (approx. 5 minutes). Take the course >>>
The Cessna 172 pilot learned some valuable—and nearly fatal—lessons when he encountered an icy winter storm over the mountains near Bedford, Pennsylvania (approx. 12 minutes). Hear the pilot tell the story >>>
You wouldn’t run a marathon and add layers of clothing at each water stop. That’s about how much sense it makes to fly into icing conditions—none. This Pilot Safety Announcement illustrates how ice accumulation on your aircraft will rob it of performance. Check it out >>>
Weather is the most critical and complex variable that affects your flying. But you don't have to be a meteorologist to understand what makes weather, and use that understanding to help make sound flight decisions. This is what being weather wise is all about ... the ability to integrate official reports and forecasts with what you can see outside to cope with changing flight conditions in the real world. Wouldn't you like to be WeatherWise? (PDF file—358KB) Download it now >>>
Automated weather reporting systems are being installed at airports across the country. They provide more weather data than ever before but also require pilots to interpret the information they receive. This Safety Advisor describes these systems, their strengths and weaknesses and even offers weather gathering and interpretation information. Guidelines for understanding their performance are also provided. (PDF file—219KB) Download it now >>>
Winter flying brings the potential for encountering icing conditions in flight. Do you know how to anticipate areas of probable icing? Is your aircraft's anti-icing equipment enough to provide safe flight through ice-laden air? How can you know if your aircraft is accumulating ice on areas you can't see—like the propeller or the tail? This Safety Advisor discusses icing and provides tips on how to avoid this potentially deadly foe. (PDF file—442KB) Download it now >>>
If you shell out thousands of dollars for deicing equipment—whether on a new airplane or retrofitted to an existing older aircraft—you should reasonably expect your investment to see you safely through icy clouds or other freezing precipitation, right? (PDF file—354KB) Download it now >>>
Have you ever tuned in the ATIS at your favorite airport only to hear "...braking action fair" and wondered exactly what it meant? These reports highlight one of the hazards of winter flying—taxiways and runways covered in snow, ice and slush. These conditions should not always deter pilots from taking to the air in winter. (PDF file — 293KB) Download it now >>>
ASI Safety Quizzes
For light GA aircraft, structural icing is one of the greatest hazards of winter flying. Ice can accumulate quickly, decreasing lift and increasing drag to the point where continued flight is impossible. Learn how to avoid icing conditions (and what to do if you fly into them unexpectedly) with this ASI Safety Quiz. Underwritten by the AOPA Insurance Agency, Inc.
In the age of Google, we're still using coded weather that dates to the teletype era. However, pilots still need to be able to decode this ancient form of communication. Take this ASI Safety Quiz to learn more about decoding textual weather products. Underwritten by the AOPA Insurance Agency, Inc.
Snow, frost, or ice can really be a drag on takeoff. Learn more about wing contamination in this ASI Safety Quiz. Underwritten by the AOPA Insurance Agency, Inc.