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| Training Tips |
It happens to many pilots: A cabin door pops open in flight, sometimes just after takeoff. Although a rude surprise, this is something that the well-trained pilot handles with ease. Too bad such an easily remedied problem causes accidents, usually because a pilot was unprepared. Your training and flight test will include the handling of "realistic distractions." Your designated pilot examiner is required to confront you with a distraction on the checkride. Your job will be to demonstrate that you can focus on what's important—maintaining positive control of the aircraft—then resolving the distraction safely.
Pilots can attest that a door coming unsecured in flight is more than an artificial distraction; it's a common real-world occurrence. Keeping the problem in perspective maintains safety if your calm, orderly cockpit suddenly becomes a loud, windy place. "If a door opens in flight, particularly on takeoff, ignore it! Fly the airplane. Stay in the pattern, and then land and close the door (it would be prudent to determine why the door opened before taking off again). If for some reason you can't return and land, depart the pattern normally, get into straight and level flight at a safe altitude and check traffic. Then think about closing the door," explains "Open door in flight" on AOPA Flight Training Online.
New pilots are surprised to learn that the typical aircraft suffers little impediment from an open cockpit door. "Although some airplanes are adversely affected by the door opening in flight, most are not, and will fly normally with the door open. If you find yourself with the door open in flight, remember to fly the airplane first. Follow the instructions in your pilot's operating handbook to secure the door in flight or land as soon as possible," reiterates the AOPA Air Safety Foundation's article "Is your cabin door closed and locked?"
Before your next flight, get acquainted with the comprehensive discussion of this subject in Chapter 16 of the Airplane Flying Handbook . Then review the door-open checklist in your pilot's operating handbook, guaranteeing your readiness to handle this well-known cause of distraction.
| Your Partner in Training |
Flying in the heat is a fact of life during the summer months. It's important to avoid dehydration and fatigue, both of which can prove dangerous in the cockpit. For a quick primer on beating the heat, see the article on AOPA Flight Training Online. Review aeromedical factors in Chapter 15 of the Pilot's Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge, then test your knowledge with this AOPA Air Safety Foundation Safety Quiz. Above all, keep your cool!As an AOPA Flight Training Member, you have access to all of the features within AOPA Online. Login information is available online.
| Flight Training News |
CAREERS IN AVIATION ANNOUNCES NEW SCHOLARSHIP
Careers in Aviation, an organization that seeks to advance aviation education and employment, has received a donation from an Atlanta-area fixed-base operator that will enable a new scholarship. The $2,500 Epps Aviation Scholarship is designated for a potential or current student pursuing a career in aviation who needs financial support to complete training or education. See the Web site for details and application information.
WESTERN MICHIGAN APPOINTS DEAN OF AVIATION COLLEGE
Western Michigan University (WMU) in Kalamazoo, Mich., has named David Powell dean of WMU's College of Aviation. Powell has been serving as interim chief since last summer. He joined the college in 2003 as director of operations and assistant dean. Previously he was chief pilot for United Airlines' Miami and San Francisco flight operations facilities.
PENNSYLVANIA FLIGHT SCHOOL TO CLOSE
The flight school at Kutztown Airport in Kutztown, Pa., will close, according to a report in The Reading Eagle . The airport is to remain open, but flight training operations and a scenic ride business will cease, airport manager Earl Binder told airport clients in a letter. The letter blamed the closure on financial losses at the airport and indicated that Binder would auction his fleet of airplanes, including a Waco biplane, in August.
RUNWAY SAFETY INITIATIVE TARGETS FLIGHT SCHOOLS, PILOTS
Few pilots realize that some of aviation's worst accidents have happened on the ground. In a full-court press to raise runway safety awareness and curtail incursions, the AOPA Air Safety Foundation reached out to flight schools and more than 100,000 pilots this week. The foundation mailed free sets of its popular runway safety flash cards to more than 2,400 flight schools, encouraging their use as a training aid for students. About 58,000 pilots nationwide received an e-mail with links to the foundation's runway safety resources, including the flash cards, an online course, and a recently updated Safety Quiz. An additional 59,000 pilots will receive postcards highlighting the resource collection.
| Inside AOPA |
MAKING THE PERFECT PANEL
Some day the bug will bite (if it hasn't already), and you'll yearn to become an aircraft owner. When that happens, there are many things to consider in the purchase, one of the most important of which is the instrument panel. Soon after buying, you may dream of upgrading that panel. Tune in to this week's sweepstakes update for some tips on how to make it the best it can possibly be.
WE NEED YOUR VOTE IN THE JUNE 'PILOT' PHOTO CONTEST
Help pick the June winner in the AOPA Pilot 2008 General Aviation Photography Contest. AOPA Pilot staff selected the 12 best June entries, and now it is up to you to vote for your favorite. The monthly winner will be announced in next week's ePilot Flight Training Edition and published on AOPA Online. You too can have a shot at winning. Enter your own photos in the contest before it closes on Sept. 2. Cash prizes totaling more than $5,000 will be awarded, including a grand prize of $1,000.
BOOK NOW FOR AOPA EXPO EXCITEMENT
Join your fellow aviation enthusiasts for three fun-packed days at AOPA Expo 2008, Nov. 6 through 8, in San Jose, Calif. Register now to get special rates for packages that include the exhibit hall, educational seminars, and fun social events. And when you book your room at an AOPA hotel, you will receive special rates and, upon check-in, a gift bag filled with information on everything San Jose has to offer. Come enjoy daily general sessions and the aircraft display, all free and open to the public. In addition, Cessna will be providing free transportation to and from the aircraft display (located at Mineta San Jose International) and the convention center.
HAVE YOU UPDATED YOUR AOPA MEMBER PROFILE?
To make the most of your membership and allow us to serve you better, please visit AOPA Online and update your personal member profile.
| Training Products |
KING SCHOOLS SPORT PILOT GET-IT-ALL KIT
If you're training to become a sport pilot—and that encompasses students flying fixed-wing aircraft, trikes, and powered parachutes—King Schools has a package of study tools specifically designed for you. The King Schools Get-It-All Kit includes the sport pilot airplane knowledge and checkride courses; DVDs covering topics such as takeoffs and landings, VFR cross-country flying, weather knowledge, navigation, and emergencies; a flight-planning organizer pad; and a burgundy cloth bag to tote it all. (There's more; see the Web site for the complete list.) The price is $563 ($523 for EAA members). Order online or call 800/854-1001.
Note: Products listed have not been evaluated by ePilot editors unless otherwise noted. AOPA assumes no responsibility for products or services listed or for claims or actions by manufacturers or vendors.
| Final Exam |
Question: On the airport diagram for McCarran International in Las Vegas, the numbers S30, D145, ST175, DT460, DDT833 are on the right-hand side of the diagram under runway headings. What do these numbers mean?
Answer: These numbers state the respective runway weight-bearing capacity for various aircraft wheel configurations. The weights are expressed in thousands of pounds. In this example, S30 means the runway use is limited to a maximum of 30,000 pounds gross landing weight for single-wheeled aircraft (one wheel per strut). D145 reflects a maximum weight limitation of 145,000 pounds for dual-wheeled aircraft (two wheels per strut). ST stands for single tandem, DT stands for dual tandem, and DDT stands for double dual tandem. The published weight capacity of a runway must be approved by the local airport board and may be more restrictive than the actual runway capability to reduce heavy traffic and maintenance needs.
Got a question for our technical services staff? E-mail to [email protected] or call the Pilot Information Center, 800/872-2672. Don't forget the online archive of "Final Exam" questions and answers, searchable by keyword or topic.
| What's New Online |
With 2,400 hours and an airplane he knew very well, the pilot convinced himself that the signs of engine failure in his Twin Comanche were, in fact, something else. Read his account of what happened in the latest edition of Never Again Online .
| Picture Perfect |
Looking for some really fabulous aviation photography? All the air-to-air photos and beautifully detailed ground images used by AOPA Pilot magazine over the years are yours at the click of a mouse button. Download your favorite images to use for wallpaper or send an e-postcard. For more details, see AOPA Online.
| Weekend Weather |
| ePilot Calendar |
UPCOMING FLYING DESTINATIONS:
Olathe, Kan. An Air Expo sponsored by the Heart of America Wing of the Commemorative Air Force takes place July 12 and 13 at New Century Aircenter (IXD). For more information, contact Beth McCale, 913/706-8986, or visit the Web site.
Geneseo, N.Y. The Geneseo Airshow 2008 takes place July 12 and 13 at Geneseo (D52). For more information, contact Austin Wadsworth, 585/243-2100, or visit the Web site.
Tarkio, Mo. The fifth annual Wing Nuts Flying Circus and Fly-In takes place July 12 at Gould Peterson Municipal (K57). AOPA President Phil Boyer will be speaking at the event. For more information, visit the Web site.
Howell, Mich. The seventh annual Helicopters Only Fly-In takes place July 13 at Livingston County Spencer J. Hardy (OZW). For more information, contact Skip Olszewski, 810/516-7144.
Mesa, Ariz. The 2008 SW American Association of Airport Executives Conference takes place July 14 at the Arizona Golf Resort Hotel and Conference Center. AOPA President Phil Boyer will be speaking. For more information, visit the Web site.
Denver, Colo. The Parade of Pistons takes place July 17 through 19 at Centennial (APA). For more information, contact Susan Bolinger, 218/525/6228, or visit the Web site.
Benson, Minn. A Benson Kid Day Weekend Fly-In takes place July 20 at Benson Municipal (BBB). For more information, contact Kent, 320/843-4432, or visit the Web site.
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 Newark and Pittsburgh, July 19 and 20. 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.