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Copyright ï¿½ 2002 AOPA.
| GA News |
| CIRRUS WARNS OF PARACHUTE SYSTEM PROBLEM |
Cirrus Design Corporation on Monday issued service alert bulletins mandating immediate modification of the emergency parachute systems in SR20 and SR22 aircraft. The bulletins said that owners should not fly their aircraft until the repairs are made or make one day VFR flight to get to a repair station. Ballistic Recovery Systems Inc. (BRS), manufacturer of the parachute system, discovered a problem as it was completing work on a new system for the Cessna 172 Skyhawk. The problem involves the BRS activation cable that the pilot would use to deploy the emergency parachute, but the condition does not affect the parachute or the rocket. The repair, at no cost to owners, is estimated to take less than an hour. Cirrus is manufacturing and shipping the replacement parts to its service centers. FAA sources indicate that the agency is considering emergency airworthiness action. The current Cirrus fleet numbers about 320 aircraft. See the Web site for updates.
AVIATION LEADER, FIRST AOPA PRESIDENT DIES
Joseph B. "Doc" Hartranft Jr., the first full-time president of AOPA, died last Friday in Annapolis, Maryland. He was 86. Hartranft influenced everything from the words pilots use to runway markings. He founded collegiate and international aviation organizations, and he was an innovator in association management. He would go on to become the association's first employee, AOPA president from 1952 to 1977, and chairman of the AOPA Board of Trustees from 1977 to 1985; he remained a trustee emeritus until his death. "Doc Hartranft was a true visionary and defender of general aviation," said AOPA President Phil Boyer. "When he helped found AOPA in 1939, the military's concerns about impending world war threatened the freedom of civilian aviation. Hartranft's leadership not only preserved general aviation through that dark period, but also enlisted GA in the defense of the nation. Much of what general aviation is today is the result of Hartranft's leadership and innovation." See AOPA Online, and look for more details on the life and times of AOPA's founder in the April issue of AOPA Pilot.
MICCO TO RECEIVE AEROBATIC CERTIFICATION
Micco Aircraft Company expects to receive aerobatic certification of the Micco SP26 next Tuesday. The first Aerobatic category aircraft will go to Westminster College in Salt Lake City for upset training and tailwheel endorsements. The news comes despite uncertainty as to the future ownership of the company. Micco, of Fort Pierce, Florida, hopes to find a new owner this spring, and is continuing with a reduced staff and limited operations. The Seminole Indian tribe decided to sell Micco after ousting its former chief, James Billie, last year. Many of the business investments Billie pursued, such as Micco, are for sale.
CESSNA SOVEREIGN MAKES MAIDEN FLIGHT
Cessna Aircraft Company's newest aircraft, the Citation Sovereign, made its maiden flight Wednesday. Launching from Wichita's Mid-Continent Airport, the airplane made a one-hour and 10-minute flight to conduct a variety of tests including basic stability, flap extension and retraction, controllability, and slow flight. The midsize Citation has a 2,500-nm NBAA range while carrying eight passengers. FAA certification is expected in late 2003 with first customer deliveries starting in early 2004.
FAA PARTNERS WITH JEPP ON GRAPHICAL TFRS
The FAA has partnered with Jeppesen to provide graphical temporary flight restriction (TFR) depictions to flight service stations. AOPA is continuing its push to make the vital information available directly to pilots as well. After the September 11 terrorist attacks, AOPA established the precedent by posting the depictions on AOPA's Web site. Later, AOPA featured Jepp's high-quality work on AOPA Online after the notam regarding nuclear sites was issued. It helped countless pilots avoid restricted airspace. As the FAA's partner, Jeppesen will develop a prototype system that will create, maintain, and distribute graphical TFRs to flight service specialists only. AOPA will continue to try to make the information available directly to the pilot community.
For daily news updates, see AOPA Online.
| Inside AOPA |
| AOPA PRESENTS KEY TO SWEEPS BONANZA WINNER |
Long-time AOPA member, Norman Elliott and his wife Joyce, were flown to Mineral Wells, Texas, yesterday to be introduced to their prize, the most technologically advanced aircraft ever awarded by AOPA. During a ceremony at the Meggitt Avionics/S-Tec Corporation hangar, AOPA President Phil Boyer presented the Elliotts with the symbolic key to their gleaming red and white 2001 AOPA Sweepstakes Bonanza. Delays in FAA certification of the cutting-edge avionics prevented immediate delivery of the aircraft. "But soon, when Norm and Joyce can park this beautiful Bonanza at their home airport in Los Alamos, New Mexico, it will have the most modern fully certified avionics available for a general aviation aircraft of this type," said Boyer. Stay tuned for updates on our next giveaway airplane, a vintage UPF-7 Waco biplane, a special two-year project. For more on the Bonanza delivery see AOPA Online and the April issue of AOPA Pilot.
AOPA FIGHTS STATES' PROPOSED SECURITY REQUIREMENTS
AOPA is fighting state legislation that would require pilot IDs and student pilot background checks in Maryland, Michigan, and South Dakota, with a wary eye on similar bills in other states. AOPA is asking its members in those three states to familiarize themselves with the legislation, and then voice their opposition directly to the appropriate lawmakers. AOPA is stressing to all state policymakers that "a more logical approach to addressing aviation security and airman requirements should be left to the federal government to implement," which is under way at the FAA. The association recently petitioned the agency to amend aviation regulations to require that a pilot carry a government-issued photo ID. See AOPA Online.
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| On Capitol Hill |
| HOUSE COMMITTEE APPROVES GA RELIEF BILL |
A House committee has approved a bill, supported by AOPA, that would provide funds to aviation businesses that were hurt from recent airspace closures such as the September 11 terrorist attacks and the Winter Olympic Games. This week the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure overwhelmingly approved the General Aviation Reparations Act of 2001 (H.R. 3347) that would provide $2.5 billion in direct grants and $3 billion in loan guarantees. A manager's amendment sponsored by John Mica, aviation subcommittee chairman, was adopted that lowered the loan guarantee figure from $5 billion to $3 billion for budgetary purposes and extended direct compensation to general aviation workers who lost their jobs as a result of the terrorist attacks. The bill must now be approved by the full House. Meanwhile in the Senate, Jim Inhofe of Oklahoma is expected to introduce the companion bill to H.R. 3347 in the coming weeks.
CONGRESSMAN WORKS TO PROTECT CIVILIAN AIRCRAFT
AOPA's staff met with John Van Fossen, chief of staff for Rep. Peter Hoekstra (R-Mich.), on Wednesday as the congressman works to ensure that the Bush administration sets up safeguards to protect civilian aircraft from future shoot-downs. Hoekstra authored the provision in the most recent foreign appropriations act that withholds funds supporting the U.S.-Peruvian air interdiction program until the United States sets up the safeguards. Last April the Peruvian air force fired on and forced down a plane mistakenly identified as a drug carrier. "AOPA fully supports Hoekstra's leadership on this sensitive issue and his efforts to hold the U.S. agencies involved in the tragic incident accountable for their actions," said AOPA President Phil Boyer.
| Airport Support Network |
| VOLUNTEER OF THE WEEK—CLARK ZEAMAN |
For several years, Clark Zeaman, AOPA Airport Support Network volunteer for Pennsylvania's Corry Lawrence Airport (8G2), has been educating children and their parents about aviation. He conducts these meetings at the airport and in the surrounding towns. Clark hands out foam gliders and literature supplied by AOPA about general aviation, airports, and learning to fly. He's surprised to see how many parents send their children over to thank him. He hopes his efforts will spark an interest in some of the youngsters who want to learn to fly.
To learn more about the Airport Support Network, visit AOPA Online.
| AOPA Air Safety Foundation News |
| SIGN UP TO HELP YOUR FELLOW PILOTS |
There are now more than 3,300 AOPA Air Safety Foundation SkySpotters dedicated to improving the quantity and quality of pilot reports (pireps). Are you? Participants receive a certificate of completion, a lapel pin, and a "secret" word to use when giving pireps to identify themselves as members of the program. To take the interactive training course, 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: Is it legal to take off VFR from one airport that is clear, get above an overcast layer of clouds, then cruise in VFR and land at an airport that is also VFR? The departure and arrival airports have clear conditions, but the airports along the way are overcast. I don't have an instrument rating.
Answer: What you are describing is called VFR over-the-top. VFR over-the-top is strictly done VFR, and although it is not recommended for VFR pilots, it is not prohibited. As long as you can maintain the VFR cloud clearance requirements for the airspace you are in, you are considered to be legal. Note that student pilots must maintain visual contact with the ground and therefore, cannot fly VFR over-the-top. Please note also, that VFR over-the-top is different from VFR on-top. VFR on-top is an authorization for an IFR aircraft to operate in VFR conditions at any appropriate VFR altitude (as specified in the regulations and restricted by ATC). A pilot receiving this authorization must comply with the VFR visibility, distance from cloud criteria, and the minimum IFR altitudes specified in FAR Part 91.
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 |
|Did you know you can create a personal e-card using the images from the AOPA Online Gallery? Send one to a friend today. See AOPA Online. |
| What's New At AOPA Online |
|The AOPA Air Safety Foundation's taxiway diagrams have been updated. See AOPA Online. |
| ePilot Calendar |
| Check your weekend weather on AOPA Online. |
WEEKEND FLYING DESTINATIONS
Washington, D.C. National Air and Space Society lecture "The Fight for Air Superiority during World War II" takes place March 16 at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. Retired Col. Robert "Shorty" Rankin, USAF, and Gen. Gunther Rall, German Luftwaffe, share their experiences as WWII fighter pilots. See the Web site.
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 in Lubbock, Texas, and Philadelphia March 9 and 10. Clinics are scheduled in Orlando, Florida, and Minneapolis, Minnesota, March 16 and 17. 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 Phoenix on March 3 and Philadelphia on March 10. For more Pinch-Hitter courses, see AOPA Online.
ASF SAFETY SEMINARS
AOPA Air Safety Foundation Safety Seminars are scheduled in Perrysburg, Ohio, and Cheswick, Pennsylvania, March 6. Seminars are scheduled in North Canton, Ohio, and Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania, March 7. See AOPA Online.
For comments on calendar items or to make submissions, contact [email protected].