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SENATE COMMITTEE BLASTS LANDING SLOT AUCTION
Despite almost universal objection to the landing slot auction plan, the FAA bulled ahead and announced it would auction two slots at Newark Liberty International Airport. The slots came open after the bankruptcy of Eos Airlines. The move brought a stinging rebuke from the lawmakers who write the checks to fund the FAA. In fact, the lawmakers reiterated many of AOPA's arguments against the FAA selling landing rights. Read more on AOPA Online.
LEARNING FROM A HORRIFIC ACCIDENT
A horrific accident along the Oregon coast on Aug. 4 claimed the lives of a pilot and his passenger as well as three children on the ground. While it is far too soon to know what happened, AOPA Air Safety Foundation Executive Director Bruce Landsberg has some thoughts on lessons pilots can learn from the accident at this early stage.
FAA TO GIVE LSA INDUSTRY A 'HEALTH' ASSESSMENT
FAA officials told leaders of the light sport aircraft (LSA) industry at Oshkosh last week that an assessment of several LSA manufacturers will begin in September to determine the overall health of the industry. The "health" issues include determining whether companies are in compliance with ASTM (American Society of Testing and Materials) standards, as well as other ASTM requirements. Some of the leading manufacturers have told the FAA that while most manufacturers of the two-seat aircraft are meeting ASTM standards, others are flaunting the rules. The FAA has picked 29 of the first 52 manufacturers to offer light sport aircraft for the assessment. Read more on AOPA Online.
AOPA, SENATORS OPPOSE AIR FORCE'S AIRSPACE GRAB
AOPA and members of Congress are opposing an Air Force proposal that would create the Powder River Military Training Complex and take airspace over four states: Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota, and South Dakota. The military operations areas (MOAs) would contain bomber aircraft flying at high speeds and low altitudes, along with the release of chaff and flares, a combination that AOPA says poses a danger to general aviation aircraft. Read more on AOPA Online.
LARGE TFRs IN EFFECT FOR POLITICAL CONVENTIONS
With the political conventions just around the corner, the FAA has issued notams for large, presidential-like temporary flight restrictions (TFRs). The Democratic National Convention takes place from Aug. 25 through 28 in Denver while the Republican Convention takes place from Sept. 1 through 4 in Minneapolis. See AOPA Online for the DNC notam or RNC notam. Scroll down for plain-language versions, graphics, and FAA flight advisories.
WIND CAN'T FOOL RESEARCHERS
The 2008 Olympics are serving as a testing ground for a new technology that may improve aviation safety. A team of researchers at the Ocean University of China has developed and tested a portable Doppler lidar (light detection and ranging) station that can accurately measure real-time wind speed and direction over large areas. Read more on AOPA Online.
AMERICAN CHAMBLISS WINS RED BULL RACE IN LONDON
American Kirby Chambliss stole the glory at the Red Bull Air Race World Series on Aug. 3 in London after the race favorite hit a pylon and failed to make the finals. With Paul Bonhomme's fall from grace, the competition is wide open for the overall victory with only four races remaining in the season. London's final took place before a crowd of 40,000 spectators. The pilots at times flew a few feet off the River Thames on a rainy afternoon as they tumbled their way around the aerobatic race course. Read more on AOPA Online.
For daily news updates, see AOPA Online.
| Safety & Proficiency |
A safety pilot takes over for her hooded husband when they have a close encounter of the C-130 "Hercules" kind during a practice instrument approach. And the oft-used term "taking the active" runway gains new meaning in this latest installment of " Never Again Online."
SAVE MONEY BY FLYING ON THE GROUND
If you're working on your private or commercial certificate, or your instrument rating, you can save money by logging flying time without ever leaving the ground. The FAA allows pilots seeking certain ratings and certificates to log a specific amount of time spent with a flight instructor using an approved training device (ATD) or simulator. You need to log a minimum of 40 hours of actual or simulated instrument time to receive your rating, but you can log as much as half of that on the ground under FAR 61.65(e)(2). Just how much money can you save by taking this approach? Find out on AOPA Online.
COPTER PILOT USES COURSES FOR AIRPLANE INSTRUMENT ADD-ON
Every two weeks, Kerry Tate flies his Piper Warrior II from Arkansas to Texas, stores it in a rented hangar, and then walks across the airport to his job flying helicopters. The routine works out great when the weather is VFR. But Tate, who is an instrument-rated commercial helicopter pilot, does not yet have his instrument rating for fixed-wing aircraft. He plans to add the rating for airplanes and use the AOPA Air Safety Foundation's instrument flying online courses to study. Read more on AOPA Online.
GO BEYOND THE BUZZ WITH SAFETY QUIZ
When pilots hear the phrase "maneuvering flight," many think of aerobatics and buzzing. Maneuvering flight encompasses much more: ground reference maneuvers, steep turns, even normal traffic patterns fall into this phase of flight. Unfortunately, maneuvering accidents occur far too often—usually with fatal outcomes. Test your knowledge of the risks with the latest Safety Quiz from the AOPA Air Safety Foundation. To learn straightforward concepts that will help you avoid the hazards of maneuvering flight, check out the foundation's free interactive course Essential Aerodynamics: Stalls, Spins, and Safety .
FSS TIP OF THE WEEK: EASY WAYS TO GIVE AND RECEIVE PIREPS
During your weather briefing, the FSS specialist will mention that pilot reports (pireps) are appreciated. Pireps—reported by pilots for pilots—provide in-flight weather information that can give you a better picture of the conditions than a forecast. You can file and receive pireps en route by contacting flight service on 122.2 MHz, flight watch on 122.0 MHz, or on the frequency listed on your chart. Learn how to give pireps in the AOPA Air Safety Foundation's online course, SkySpotter . For more FSS tips, download AOPA's quick reference card.
IMPROVE YOUR SAFETY BY LEARNING FROM OTHERS
Gain invaluable knowledge about flying safely by learning from the mistakes of others. Using your ePilot personalization preferences, like "piston single-engine" or "turbine," the AOPA Air Safety Foundation's Accident Database generates a list of accidents that have been added to the database in the past 30 days. If you haven't personalized your newsletter, select your aircraft preferences from the "types of aircraft" section on the ePilot personalization page.
| Inside AOPA |
VOTE FOR THE JULY 'PILOT' PHOTO AND ENTER THE CONTEST
July was a remarkable month for the AOPA Pilot Photography Contest, presenting AOPA Pilot staff with the difficult task of choosing from the many terrific photos submitted during the month. Thirty entries made it through to the month's semi-final round. Then, staff picked the 12 best pictures, gladly leaving it up to you to vote for the winner. With only 26 days left in the contest, don't wait to enter your favorite general aviation photos. The contest ends Sept. 2. Cash prizes totaling more than $5,000 will be awarded, including a grand prize of $1,000.
AOPA PREVIEWS NEW INTERNET FLIGHT PLANNER AT OSHKOSH
AOPA's new Internet Flight Planner, due out at AOPA Expo in November, drew hundreds of pilots to the Big Yellow Tent at Oshkosh last week. Pilots were impressed with the automatic weather overlay, pre-stored aircraft performance specifications, easier access to AOPA's Jeppesen weather, and the ease at which they could add waypoints. The new AJAX-based flight planner will be compatible for MAC and PC users and will work on any computer with Internet access. Many members who played with the flight planner at Oshkosh have tried to access the program from home using the same URL. We've closed access to it once again, in order to finish the product and have it ready for everyone at Expo.
STEPPING UP TO TAA COULD SAVE YOU MONEY ON INSURANCE
Purchasing or upgrading an aircraft with the latest gadgets and gizmos can satisfy your technology cravings and make flying easier. With the increased situational awareness that technically advanced aircraft (TAA) have, they may also help you save money on your aircraft insurance. There are two parts to the TAA equation that will qualify for a 10-percent premium discount: the aircraft equipment and the pilot's proficiency. Find out the qualifications on AOPA Online.
SHOP AT THE WORLDPOINTS MALL AND EARN BONUS POINTS
Sending the kids back to school, or simply want to earn bonus reward points? AOPA encourages members to shop at the Bank of America WorldPoints Mall—an online shopping site that offers bonus points for purchases made at more than 200 popular retailers. AOPA WorldPoints credit card customers who begin their shopping at the WorldPoints Mall can earn between one and 10 bonus points or more for every qualifying dollar spent. Points can then be redeemed for just about anything—cash, travel, brand-name merchandise, Ultimate Access experiences, and gift cards. Watch your points grow and get more rewards, while supporting AOPA at the same time. If you don't have the card, apply today!
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| Quiz Me |
Here's a question asked by an AOPA member who contacted our aviation services staff through the AOPA Pilot Information Center. Test your knowledge.
Question: I am 38 years old and have a third class medical certificate with a six-year special issuance authorization. I know that the FAA recently extended the duration of third class medicals from three to five years for pilots under 40. Does that apply to me even though I have a special issuance?
Answer: Yes. The new duration for medical certificates applies to both regular and special issuance medicals for pilots under age 40. However, the terms of the six-year authorization have not changed. So, per your six-year authorization letter, you will still have to submit the requested medical information to the FAA each year to verify there has been no adverse change in your health.
Got a question for our aviation services staff? The AOPA Pilot Information Center is a service available to all members as part of the annual dues. Call 800/872-2672, or e-mail to [email protected]. Send comments on our Quiz Me! questions to [email protected].
| GET YOUR GLASS SWEEPSTAKES UPDATE |
SWEEPS ARCHER A SUCCESS AT OSHKOSH
Thousands of members came by AOPA's Big Yellow Tent at Oshkosh last week to make sure we were taking care of their Get Your Glass Sweepstakes Piper Archer. They asked lots of great questions and closely examined the handy work of all the shops. Now that the show's over, stop by the sweepstakes home page for some inside information on how the airplane flew to and from the show, and for some more Oshkosh scoop.
| Aviation Events & Weather |
Looking for something to do this weekend? Want to plan an aviation getaway? See our online calendar of events. We've enhanced our calendar so that with one click, you can see all of the events listed in the calendar regions you selected when personalizing ePilot. Now you can browse events listed two weeks to a few months out to make your planning easier. Before you take off on an adventure, make sure you check our current aviation weather provided by Jeppesen.
To submit an event to the calendar or to search all events visit AOPA Online. For airport details, including FBO fuel prices, see AOPA's Airport Directory Online.
FLIGHT INSTRUCTOR REFRESHER CLINICS
The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics are scheduled in Atlanta, Ga., Aug. 9 and 10; Long Beach, Calif., Reno, Nev., and Allentown, Pa., Aug. 16 and 17. For a complete schedule, see AOPA Online. Can't make it in person? Sign up for the CFI Refresher Online.
AOPA AIR SAFETY FOUNDATION SAFETY SEMINARS
AOPA Air Safety Foundation Safety Seminars are scheduled in Wichita, Kan.; Ypsilanti, Mich.; and Germantown, Tenn., on Sept. 8. Topics vary—for details and a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.