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AOPA Online Members Only -- AOPA ePilot--Vol. 2, Issue 39AOPA Online Members Only -- AOPA ePilot--Vol. 2, Issue 39


Inside AOPA

On Capitol Hill

Airport Support Network

ASF News

Quiz Me!

Coming up in
AOPA Pilot

The Road to Expo

ePilot Calendar

Weekend Weather

Cirrus to unveil new model at AOPA Expo
Raytheon Premier nears certification
FAA steps up testing to curb runway incursions
AOPA mounts effort to save Hawthorne
Volume 2, Issue 39
September 29, 2000
GA News
Late this week, FAA sources indicated that about 4,300 oil filter adapter plate gaskets were sent to Textron-Lycoming for final quality control testing. A recently issued emergency airworthiness directive (AD-2000-18-53) mandates repetitive replacement of faulty gaskets every 50 hours to prevent oil loss and possible in-flight fire. The FAA stated that the testing should be completed over the weekend and the new gaskets should be available from Lycoming and parts distributors sometime next week. The agency plans to release an approved alternative method of compliance (AMOC) that will make installation of gaskets with the new part number a terminating action for the AD. AOPA opposed the AD, stating that it would lead to a serious parts shortage and subsequent aircraft downtime. Organizations representing the interests of larger fleet operators recently began lobbying the FAA and Lycoming to reserve the 4,300 new gaskets for high-utilization operators. AOPA, however, continues to negotiate with senior Lycoming officials to ensure a reasonable distribution of the new gaskets to all affected aircraft owners. For the latest, see AOPA Online.

The FAA on Wednesday awarded a type certificate to The New Piper Aircraft Inc. for the single-engine turboprop Malibu Meridian. Company officials said that the certificate confirms New Piper's commitment to introducing advanced aircraft into the general aviation fleet. "We have listened to our customers, ultimately delivering the performance, technology, and features they have demanded," New Piper President and CEO Chuck Suma said. To be able to deliver Meridians quickly after certification, the company began production of the Meridian in early 2000. The first one will be delivered to a customer next week. The company will build 35 Meridians this year and accelerate the production to more than 100 aircraft in 2001. The six-seat airplane cruises at more than 260 knots and sells for $1.5 million. For more, see the Web site.

Cirrus Design Corporation of Duluth, Minnesota, is ready to lift the wraps next month on a new 310-hp model called the SR22. The 180-knot aircraft will carry a price tag of $276,600. The present model, the 160-kt SR20, sells for $188,300. Both models come IFR-equipped. Certification of the SR22 is expected by the end of the year. The SR22 will use a Continental IO-550 engine, while the SR20 uses the 200-hp Continental IO-360. No further details will be available prior to AOPA Expo in Long Beach, California, in late October, a company spokesman said. If you just can't wait, try an unofficial Web site run by SR20 fans and owners. There is wide speculation on the site about the SR22.

Photo of Raytheon Premier
Raytheon Aircraft's new Premier I business jet is expected to receive FAA certification before the end of this year, although the program is not moving as fast as the company had intended. The certification program is now about 90 percent complete for the $4.8 million entry-level jet that carries six passengers. Customer deliveries are to follow soon after certification. "This is a superb aircraft that has already met or exceeded its cruise speed, range, and payload guarantees," Raytheon Aircraft Chairman and CEO Hansel Tookes said. For more information, see the Web site.

On September 12, pilots Chris Wall and Dan Dominguez took off on the general aviation adventure of a lifetime. They are flying around the world in an Aero Commander 560E called Dreamcatcher as part of a mission to bring the world to 23 million students who are following the adventure over the Internet. Wall and Dominguez will trace the history of ancient Europe, fly over the barren deserts of the Middle East, and see the hidden jungles in Indonesia. The flight is a project of the Global Advancement Foundation, a group that was created and is run by students. The flight crew and volunteers spent more than 20 months, working 14-hour days, just to inspect the airplane for the global flight. Dominguez is a CFI who recently graduated from the University of Rochester. Wall is a senior at Rice University and is a pilot and A&P mechanic. At last report the crew had landed safely in Rome. The next stop is Istanbul, Turkey. To follow the adventure, see the Web site.


The FAA has formally directed examiners and safety inspectors to place more emphasis on runway incursion prevention during flight training, checkrides, and flight reviews. (This was one of several initiatives recommended by the joint industry/FAA working group cochaired by Dennis Roberts, AOPA vice president and executive director of government and technical affairs.) In a recent information bulletin, the FAA said that practical test standards and written tests are currently being revised, and that additional guidance will be provided in the Aeronautical Information Manual and in two new advisory circulars. In the bulletin, the FAA mentions a series of techniques for preventing deviations, such as reading back runway crossing and hold-short instructions, not hesitating to ask for progressive taxiway instructions, using proper radio phraseology, and turning on aircraft lights while taxiing. AOPA and the AOPA Air Safety Foundation have been heavily involved in the runway incursion prevention effort and continue to work with the FAA on solutions.

For daily news updates, see AOPA Online.

Inside AOPA
AOPA has fired a shot across the bow at a new group of developers who want to close Hawthorne Municipal Airport, a key reliever airport east of Los Angeles International Airport. The city of Hawthorne recently granted an exclusive right to Arden Realty Inc. and Paladin Partners LLC to plan a sports stadium and retail store outlets on the airport property. "AOPA has opposed all past efforts to close this airport," Bill Dunn, AOPA vice president of regional affairs, wrote the developers, "and we wish to advise Arden Realty, Paladin Partners, and the city of Hawthorne that we strongly oppose this latest assault as well." For more, see AOPA Online.

The International Council of Aircraft Owner and Pilot Associations (IAOPA) officially opened its twentieth World Assembly in Edinburgh, Scotland, Monday. IAOPA is the international umbrella group for 54 AOPA organizations worldwide. AOPA members in the United States benefit from the leadership role their association plays in IAOPA, because many of the aviation issues that will be confronted in the future in America are already being addressed in other parts of the world. User fees, environmental issues such as noise restrictions and unleaded fuel, and airport restrictions are just a few examples. For more, see AOPA Online.


AOPA is battling precedent-setting airport curfews and noise restrictions across the nation. Last month alone, AOPA filed actions against three airports that are improperly attempting to ban certain aircraft. The three airports included in August's actions are Palm Beach County Park Airport (Lantana) and Naples Municipal Airport in Florida, and Flying Cloud Airport near Minneapolis, Minnesota. For more, see AOPA Online.

The Senate Commerce Committee, under the chairmanship of Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), has forwarded to the full Senate the Federal Aviation Management Advisory Council (MAC) nominations of David Z. Plavin of New York and Arthenia L. Joyner of Florida, once again bypassing AOPA President Phil Boyer. McCain questioned Boyer's qualifications during a Commerce Committee hearing earlier this year when Boyer stated that he opposed user fees for any segment of general aviation. With a congressional recess expected in the coming weeks, the chances of Boyer's confirmation are becoming increasingly remote.

On Capitol Hill
A bill to fund the FAA for fiscal year 2001 remains stalled in the legislative process as the House and Senate try to bring the 106th congressional session to a close. Congress intends to approve a bill to fund the federal government, including the FAA, until October 6 . Yet, it is becoming apparent that at least one more funding extension will be required before members can leave town for the year. Congressional leaders have indicated that they will try to "piggyback" appropriations bills in order to expedite the process. However, Senate Democrats are objecting to passing conference reports on appropriations bills that have not passed the Senate as standalone measures. Furthermore, some appropriations bills have unresolved issues attached to them such as easing the sanctions on Cuba. This has left legislation supported by AOPA–including transportation appropriations (FAA funding), interior appropriations (backcountry airstrip protection), and Department of Defense authorization (protecting warbird aircraft)–hanging in the balance.

Airport Support Network
When ASN volunteer Dan Murray of French Valley Airport (F70), Murrieta/Temecula, California, learned of a proposal to build a residential housing development off the end of the runway, he began investigating. Using the information Murray provided, AOPA was able to write a letter in opposition to the proposal. While making presentations at a recent Riverside County Airport Land Use Commission hearing, Murray and other airport users discovered a proposal for an industrial area near the airport that was to be rezoned residential. Opposition from Murray and the users made a difference. The commission voted 3 to 1 against the rezoning. Since airport encroachment issues are far from over, Murray will continue to work with ASN staff in preparation for the next meeting in October when the housing development proposal will be on the agenda.

Click here to learn more about the Airport Support Network.

AOPA Air Safety Foundation News
The NTSB hosted a general aviation accident prevention symposium last week in Washington, D.C., to discuss key problem areas. All the old familiar accident cause factors were discussed including stall-spin scenarios, visual flight into instrument conditions, maintenance-related accidents, and midair collisions. ASF Executive Director Bruce Landsberg, who attended the meeting, noted that despite increasing activity and attention to GA mishaps, the rates of overall and fatal accidents continue to gradually decline. "If the numbers hold through the end of the year, GA could well be on the way to breaking its own record for the third consecutive year," he said.

This year marks the fiftieth anniversary of the AOPA Air Safety Foundation. The milestone will be celebrated at AOPA Expo 2000 in Long Beach, California, in special exhibit hall displays and at the October 20 morning general session. Before the foundation was established in November 1950, the general aviation accident rate was as much as five times worse than today in fatal accidents and 10 times worse as far as total accidents. For more, see AOPA Online.

Quiz Me!
Here’s a question asked by an AOPA member last week of our AOPA technical specialists. Test your knowledge.

Question: While taxiing in as a passenger in an airliner at O'Hare, I noticed lights--two cans pointing up at each location at various points (possibly intersections) that were continuously flashing yellow in an alternating fashion. What is the purpose of these lights?
Answer: The lights you saw were runway guard lights. According to the Aeronautical Information Manual (2-1-9d), runway guard lights are installed at taxiway/runway intersections. They are primarily used to make taxiway/runway intersections more conspicuous during low-visibility conditions, but may be used in all weather conditions. Runway guard lights consist of either a pair of elevated flashing yellow lights installed on either side of the taxiway, or a row of in-pavement yellow lights installed across the entire taxiway at the runway hold-short marking. You may access this section of the AIM on AOPA Online.

Got a technical question for AOPA specialists? Call 800/872-2672 or e-mail to [email protected]. Send comments on our Quiz Me! questions to [email protected].

Coming Up In AOPA Pilot
Fly the Commander 112, hunt for airspace violators during a space shuttle launch, and learn the importance of a stabilized approach in the November issue of AOPA Pilot. It will be mailed October 14.

On The Road To Expo
Have you been wondering about how the newest avionics and high-tech general aviation gadgets actually work? Come and see these products in action at AOPA Expo 2000 in Long Beach, California. There will be a record 70 product demonstrations taking place from October 20 through 22. From communications to weather, there's no better way to make product comparisons and smart buying decisions. For more, see AOPA Online or call 888/GO2-EXPO.

ePilot Calendar
Albuquerque, New Mexico. The Kodak Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta takes place October 7 through 15. Recognized as the largest balloon event in the world; mass ascensions both weekends. Albuquerque International (ABQ), 505/842-4366; Coronado Airport (4AC), 505/821-7777; and Double Eagle II Airport (AEG), 505/842-7010, serve the area. Call 505/821-1000 for event information.

Cullman, Alabama. The sixth annual North Alabama Rotorcraft Fly-In takes place October 6 through 8. Cullman Airport's Folsom Field (3A1), 256/775-1011, is the host airport. Call 256/352-8035 for event information.

Prarie Du Sac, Wisconsin. The Wollersheim Winery Grape Stomp Festival takes place October 7 and 8. Sauk Prairie Airport (91C), 608/643-3811, serves the area. Call 608/643-6515 for event information.

The correct dates for the Lake Powell Air Affair are October 6 and 7. ePilot provided the wrong dates in last week's edition.

For more airport details, see AOPA’s Airport Directory Online. For more events, see the Aviation Calendar of Events.

(All clinics start at 7:30 a.m.)
The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics are scheduled in Wichita, Kansas; Windsor Locks, Connecticut; and San Jose, California, October 7 and 8. Clinics are scheduled in Ontario, California, October 14 and 15. For complete details, visit the Flight Instructor Refresher Clinic schedule.

The next AOPA ASF Safety Seminars are scheduled in Daytona Beach, Florida, October 9; Ocala, Florida, and Hampton, Virginia, October 10; Richmond, Virginia, and St. Petersburg, Florida, October 11; and in Fort Myers, Florida, October 12. For topic information see Web site.

(Pinch Hitter courses start at 9:30 a.m.)
The next Pinch-Hitter(R) Ground School will take place October 7 in San Jose, California. For details and a complete schedule, see the Pinch Hitter Ground School Schedule.

Featuring AOPA President Phil Boyer
(7:30 p.m.; admission is free)
The next Pilot Town Meetings are in Daytona Beach, Florida, October 3; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, October 12; and Baltimore, November 13. Click for more information on Pilot Town Meetings.

Contacting ePilot
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