Now that the flying season is kicking into high gear, adventurous cross-countries and vacation destinations might soar to the top of your mind, but safety always should be the number-one priority.
Pilots visited the AOPA Online Safety Center more than 130,000 times last year to become safer, more knowledgeable aviators. The AOPA Online Safety Center is filled with seven free interactive online courses, more than 25 safety quizzes that can be graded instantly, a searchable accident database, safety hot spot topic, and more. It is a pilot's main resource to a plethora of information on almost every aviation safety subject from airspace to weather.
To reward pilots who test their aviation safety IQ with Sporty's Safety Quizzes, the AOPA Air Safety Foundation has a biweekly drawing for a Sporty's Air-Scan V aviation radio. Those who complete the online quizzes are entered in the drawing.
The short, multiple-choice quizzes can help you discover any weak areas that you might need to polish. There is no time limit, and the quizzes are graded instantly. Your score will appear at the top; incorrect answers will be marked with a red X and correct responses with a green check mark. Explanations of the correct and incorrect answers also will appear.
The AOPA Air Safety Foundation posts free interactive online courses in the AOPA Online Safety Center that qualify for the safety seminar portion of the FAA's Wings program. If it's been a while since you've been up in the air, " Know Before You Go" will help bring you up to date on the latest airspace regulations. You'll also find courses on instrument flying, special-use airspace, ATC communication, and runway safety.
One of the best ways to increase your safety is to learn from other pilots' mistakes. The AOPA Online Safety Center contains an accident database with preliminary, factual, and final reports of accidents that go back to 1983. It features only those accidents involving fixed-wing aircraft that weigh 12,500 pounds or less. Accident statistics and special reports from the AOPA Air Safety Foundation also are available.
If you'd like to find many resources on one topic, in one location, try the featured Safety Hot Spot. These topics highlight seasonal changes and current issues in the general aviation industry. Included in this section are videos, interactive courses, quizzes, access to print publications, and more.
Before your next trip around the patch or to a relaxing vacation destination, assess your aviation safety IQ and brush up on any weak areas so that your flight can be as relaxing as your vacation.
April 22, 2005