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Copyright ï¿½ 2002 AOPA.
| Protecting GA |
| GARVEY TELLS INDUSTRY TO KEEP SAFETY FOCUS |
Outgoing FAA Administrator Jane Garvey said on Tuesday that the FAA and the aviation industry must stay focused on safety and modernization, even in the face of national security concerns. Speaking to a crowd of aviation industry representatives at the Aero-Club of Washington, D.C., Garvey pointed with pride to the steps that the FAA has already taken toward modernization during her five-year tenure. But she warned that her successor, the agency, and the aviation industry cannot afford to let the national obsession with aviation security overwhelm aviation safety and modernization. Her likely successor, National Transportation Safety Board Chairman Marion Blakey, was at the luncheon. Garvey's term as FAA administrator ends August 4.
NEW TSA BOSS UNDERSTANDS TRANSPORTATION, AOPA SAYS
The naming of retired Coast Guard Adm. James Loy as the new head of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) could have some positive results for general aviation. His appointment came after TSA's former chief, John Magaw, announced his resignation late last week. "Adm. Loy comes into the job knowing something about transportation," said AOPA President Phil Boyer. "Not only does the Coast Guard have an air wing, but it also deals with recreational boaters. Their concerns about access to the national transportation system and security regulation in many ways parallel the concerns of GA pilots." TSA is going to play an increasingly more intrusive role in general aviation. As the agency expands its security mandate, it will look more closely at such things as pilot certification and GA airport security. TSA is already the controlling force in many airspace decisions.
FAA DELIVERS BLOW TO FOREIGN PILOTS
Foreign pilots can no longer obtain a U.S. private pilot certificate based on a foreign pilot license. The FAA last week sent a notice to all of its flight standards district offices, instructing them to immediately stop issuing private pilot licenses under FAR 61.75. Security officials prompted this restrictive action, which the FAA considers to be temporary while the agency develops new security screening procedures. Currently, about 2,800 foreign pilots per year obtain U.S. certificates under 61.75. "The notice does not preclude foreign students from taking flight training and testing in the United States. However, we anticipate that restrictions on foreign student training could be implemented in the near future," said Lance Nuckolls, AOPA director of certification policy.
| GAï¿½News |
| AOPA FINDS SIGNIFICANT CHANGES TO PRACTICAL TEST STANDARDS |
Beginning August 1, applicants for private pilot, commercial pilot, and flight instructor certificates will have to meet newly revised FAA practical test standards during the checkride. AOPA's Aviation Services department has conducted a thorough analysis and strongly advises flight instructors and applicants to thoroughly read the new standards, paying extra attention to the "Introduction" and "Notes" sections. If an examiner determines that a private pilot candidate did not complete a task, or the outcome was uncertain, the examiner may require the applicant to repeat the task, or portions of that task. "This is the first time that FAA has provided this guidance to examiners and it is a welcome clarification," said Melissa Bailey, AOPA vice president of air traffic, regulatory, and certification policy. The new standards require commercial applicants to demonstrate two new maneuvers, a steep spiral and a power-off, 180-degree accuracy approach and landing. Both private and commercial applicants will also be subject to more precise maneuvering standards during slow flight, power-off stalls and, in the case of private pilots, turns to a heading.
FAA CHANGES TO 'PLAIN LANGUAGE' AD FORMAT
The FAA this week announced a final rule (link to rule here) that streamlines and clarifies its Airworthiness Directive (AD) format, making it easier for aircraft owners to interpret these important directives. According to the FAA, the new format utilizes charts and tables and focuses attention on the unsafe conditions that created the need for the directive. "While plain language is great and we appreciate the FAA's effort, of more significance to aircraft owners is the Airworthiness Concern Process (ACP)," said Lance Nuckolls, AOPA director of certification policy. "The ACP is a cooperative effort between the aviation industry and the FAA to allow industry input in the development of airworthiness issues before, or even in lieu of, a proposed or final AD." AOPA Online serves as the "central hub" for distribution of airworthiness concern sheets to aircraft type clubs and submittal of type-club comments to the FAA. For more information, see the regulatory brief.
CIRRUS OFFERS ICE PROTECTION
Cirrus Design Corporation announced this week that it will offer ice protection on the SR22. The TKS-based system, designed by Aerospace Systems and Technologies (AS&T) of Great Britain, holds one hour of deice glycol. It weighs about 50 pounds when full and less than 20 pounds empty, according to Cirrus. The option is $19,700 and will be available on 2003-model aircraft.
AVIDYNE DEBUTS ENTEGRA PFD, DATALINK SERVICE
Avidyne announced at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh this week a primary flight display (PFD) for production aircraft. It's part of the FlightMax Entegra avionics suite, which includes the previously released FlightMax EX5000, a multifunction display, and a similarly sized PFD. The PFD comes complete with an electronic attitude direction indicator (EADI) and horizontal situation indicator (HSI), along with airspeed and altitude tapes and trend information. The brilliant 10.4-inch diagonal screen can be installed in either a landscape or portrait presentation. The Entegra will be an option in the Cirrus SR22. It is also being considered as a possible option by manufacturers of other aircraft at Oshkosh, including the Diamond DA40 and the Lancair Columbia 400. List price will be under $60,000, according to Avidyne. The company also announced its narrowcast datalink service that will deliver weather–including Nexrad and metars automatically sent according to the user's flight plan–to its FlightMax line of multifunction displays. For more, see the Web site.
COMPANY WINS FAA APPROVAL FOR SKYHAWK PARACHUTE
Ballistic Recovery Systems Inc. (BRS) has received FAA approval for its emergency rocket-launched parachute system in Cessna 172s. The parachute is mounted in the right side of the Skyhawk's baggage area and blasts out the right half of the rear window when launched. Kevlar straps attach the parachute to the airframe. Factory pilots said that the parachute installation doesn't affect performance. The BRS-172 system sells for $15,995, not including installation. The system is certified for 10 years without repacking. BRS also holds a supplemental type certificate (STC) for the Cessna 150/152. BRS has set up a FAQs Web page for the Skyhawk. See the Web site.
OMF SYMPHONY GETS USEFUL LOAD INCREASE
OMF Aircraft announced a useful load increase on its Symphony 160 that has been approved by both the FAA and German LBA (the German government entity with general aviation oversight). The Symphony's gross weight goes from 1,960 pounds to 2,150 pounds. The useful load goes from 635 pounds to 700 pounds, a 10-percent increase. The increase realizes OMF's goal of offering a capable two-seat airplane, one that can carry two large adults, full fuel, baggage, and have a decent range. OMF is proceeding with plans to test a German-built Thielert diesel engine in the Symphony later this year.
BEWARE OF TURBO-SHARK
Missouri heart surgeon Raymond Vetsch has doctored up something special. He and a team of volunteers surgically attached a Walter M601-T turboprop engine and an Avia five-blade prop to a Sukhoi 26MX aerobatic airplane. Vetsch, who started flying gliders at the age of 15 in the Swiss Alps, is currently flying the aircraft dubbed "Turbo-Shark" on the airshow circuit and plans to fly it this week at Oshkosh. The airplane has an astonishing climb rate of 7,500 fpm. See the Web site for a schedule.
Click here for the latest GA news from Oshkosh. For daily news updates, see AOPAï¿½Online.
| Inside AOPA |
| AOPA GETS MOVING MAPS EXEMPTED FROM NEW REG |
Those portable electronic moving maps you've been eyeing at trade shows are exempt in small aircraft from the provisions of a recent FAA advisory circular. Although the FAA had intended to require certification of all devices with moving maps, AOPA argued that the handheld GPS receivers currently used by pilots increase safety and their continued use should not be prohibited or discouraged by a certification requirement. The exemption to AC 120-76 permits pilots operating nonturbine powered aircraft under FAR Part 91 to continue utilizing portable navigation, moving map, and datalink equipment. "AOPA has steadfastly maintained that there is much to benefit, and little to lose, when these devices supplement pilot operations," said Randy Kenagy, AOPA director of advanced technology. AOPA also educated the FAA on the many new technologies emerging, such as those that use personal digital assistants (PDAs). See AOPAï¿½Online.
SOUTH DAKOTA IGNORES ARGUMENTS AGAINST STATE PILOT IDs
The South Dakota Aeronautics Commission has rejected AOPA's alternative to the state's plan to issue pilot photo identification. During a commission meeting last week, AOPA Regional Representative Bill Hamilton questioned the state's authority to issue the ID cards because it closely resembles the state licensing of pilots. Pilot licensing is a federal, not a state, responsibility. A state law passed this year directs the commission to develop means of providing a pilot photo ID. Hamilton told the commission that AOPA's pending petition with the FAA to use an existing government-issued ID would be less burdensome and a more economical way for the state to implement the law. AOPA, however, was able to get the commissioners to remove a requirement that would have allowed the state to close an airport that was not compliant with the pilot ID law. In addition, AOPA got last-minute clarification that pilots would not be required to display the photo ID on the outside of their clothing and that the law would not apply to visiting out-of-state pilots.
NTSB SUA RECOMMENDATIONS MIRROR AOPA EFFORTS
In response to the tragic accident over Bradenton, Florida, where an Air Force F-16 collided with a Cessna 172, killing the Cessna pilot, the NTSB has published recommendations ( click here to download) regarding special use airspace (SUA). The NTSB believes the FAA and DOD must do a better job of providing real-time status of SUA to civilian pilots. "The recommendations echo what AOPA's has advocated for years–give us real-time SUA status reports and the result will be improved safety for GA operations in SUA that may also be used by military aircraft," explained Melissa Bailey, AOPA vice president of air traffic, regulatory, and certification policy. Key is distribution to pilots, flight service briefers, and air traffic controllers of understandable, real-time information on SUA use, the NTSB said. Real-time information has been a cornerstone of AOPA's SUA advocacy efforts.
AOPA MEDICAL ADVISOR WINS TOP HONOR
Dr. Ian Perry, a world-renowned aviation medical specialist and international member of AOPA's Board of Aviation Medical Advisors, is the 2002 winner of the Boothby-Edwards Award. The international honor is given each year by the Aerospace Medical Association for outstanding research or clinical practice in aviation medicine. See AOPAï¿½Online.
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| On Capitol Hill |
| HOUSE PASSES MEIGS BILL |
The U.S. House of Representatives Tuesday night passed the federal legislation preserving Meigs Field in Chicago for another 25 years. H.R. 3479 was passed under suspension of the rules led by House Speaker Dennis Hastert himself. "We're pleased that the legislation has begun to move forward," commented AOPA President Phil Boyer. "Meigs Field is a landmark for pilots across the nation. Like the rest of the GA community, I'm gratified to see Congress addressing the issue." The legislation was protected from amendment on the House floor, using a fast-track procedure that required a two-thirds majority. The final vote was 343-87. Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle has pledged to pass the Senate version of the bill by year's end.
| Airport Support Network |
| HOSTING YOUR OWN FLY-IN, OPEN HOUSE STEP-BY-STEP |
This is certainly the time of year for airport events. Many of our AOPA Airport Support Network volunteers have been sending reports of pancake breakfast fly-ins and airport open houses that give the local community an opportunity to learn about the value of its airport. If you've never planned such an event, download AOPA's The Complete Guide to Holding an Airport Open House . It's packed with helpful tips. Check it out and let us know when your event will be, and afterwards, how well it went.
To learn more about the Airport Support Network, visit AOPAï¿½Online.
| AOPAï¿½Air Safety Foundation News |
| ASF ACCIDENT DATABASE AVAILABLE ONLINE |
The AOPA Air Safety Foundation's GA fixed-wing accident database is now available online. It is comprised of NTSB reports, dating back to 1983, on accidents involving fixed-wing aircraft weighing 12,500 pounds or less. A generous donation by ASF Hat-in-the-Ring member Mike Lazar funded the project.
| Quiz Me! |
|Here's a question asked by an AOPA member last week of our AOPA technical specialists. Test your knowledge. |
Question: What is the difference in reporting "turbulence" or "chop" when giving a pilot report (pirep)?
Answer: Turbulence that causes changes in altitude and/or attitude (pitch, roll, yaw) should be reported as "turbulence." Turbulence that causes rapid and somewhat rhythmic bumpiness without appreciable changes in altitude or attitude should be reported as "chop." Depending on the severity of the turbulence or chop encountered, the pilot should report "light" or "moderate." Table 7-1-6 in the Aeronautical Information Manual gives the turbulence reporting criteria. The AIM is available at AOPA Online. The AOPA Air Safety Foundation provides more information on pireps through its SkySpotter program.
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].
| Picture Perfect |
Jump to the AOPA Online Gallery to see the featured airplane of the day. Click on the link for details on how to capture wallpaper for your work area. See AOPA Online.
| What's New At AOPAï¿½Online |
|Looking for ways to cut the cost of flying? AOPA's Guide to Reducing the Cost of Flying has been updated. See AOPA Online. |
| Weekend Weather |
|See the current weather on AOPAï¿½Online, provided by Meteorlogix. |
| ePilot Calendar |
| WEEKEND FLYING DESTINATIONS |
Elkhard, Indiana. The sixteenth annual Elkhart Airshow takes place August 3 and 4 at Elkhart Municipal Airport (EKM). Includes aerobatic acts, static displays, and the first Hoosier Aviation Invitational Air Challenge. See the Web site for more information.
Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. Airport Awareness Days take place August 3 and 4 at Punxsutawney Municipal Airport (N35). Two-day event to promote local airport awareness. Attractions include aircraft art show, hot air balloons, airplane rides, radio-controlled airplane demonstration. Contact Rick Young, 814/938-2997.
For more airport details, see AOPA's Airport Directory Online . For more events, see Aviation Calendar of Events.
ASF FLIGHT INSTRUCTOR REFRESHER CLINICS
(All clinics start at 7:30 a.m.)
The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics are scheduled in Champaign, Illinois, and Allentown, Pennsylvania, August 3 and 4. Clinics are also scheduled in Boulder, Colorado, and Dallas/Ft. Worth, on August 10 and 11. For the Flight Instructor Refresher Clinic schedule, see AOPA Online.
ASF PINCH-HITTER GROUND-SCHOOL COURSES
(Pinch-Hitter courses start at 9:30 a.m.)
The next Pinch-Hitterï¿½ Ground Schools will take place in Allentown, Pennsylvania, August 4, and Dallas/Ft. Worth on August 11. For more Pinch-Hitter courses, see AOPA Online.
ASF SAFETY SEMINARS
AOPA Air Safety Foundation Safety Seminars are scheduled Little Rock, Arkansas, August 5; Memphis, Tennessee, August 6; Nashville, Tennessee, August 7; and Maryville, Tennessee, August 8. The topic is Single Pilot IFR. For the complete schedule, see AOPAï¿½Online.
To make submissions to the calendar, visit AOPA Online. For comments on calendar items, e-mail [email protected].