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AOPA ePilot - Volume 10, Issue 23AOPA ePilot - Volume 10, Issue 23

Volume 10, Issue 23 • June 6, 2008
In this issue:
GAO report looks at expanding user fees
Eclipse launches single-engine jet, raises twin prices
Pilot ignores warning, launches into thunderstorm

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AOPA Fly-In and Open House

RESTRICTED AIRSPACE EXPANDS DURING AOPA FLY-IN
Pilots attending AOPA's Fly-In and Open House should use extra care when planning and executing their flights into Frederick Municipal Airport on Saturday. The FAA is expanding the P-40 prohibited area, making it more vital than ever that pilots know exactly where they are and where they're headed. "By all means, come to fly-in," said AOPA President Phil Boyer, "but be very thorough in your preflight planning. Our goal is zero airspace incursions in spite of the challenges thrown our way." AOPA is working to mitigate the issue and has notified the FAA and security agencies. Read more on AOPA Online.

TIPS FOR A SAFE ARRIVAL
With nearly 50 pristine aircraft on display, 100 aviation exhibits, and hours of safety seminars, AOPA's Fly-In is the pilot's perfect one-day getaway. But make sure you start the day right with a safe arrival. Review these safety tips, including intercept procedures, from the AOPA Air Safety Foundation. Then, study our arrival procedures.

GA News

GAO REPORT LOOKS AT EXPANDING USER FEES
User fees are like a weed you can never kill. That became readily apparent when the Government Accountability Office (GAO) last month issued Federal User Fees: A Design Guide , a 49-page instruction manual to Congress and federal agencies on how to figure out when and how to charge for government "services." "The clear message here is that no matter how many times we beat back user fees for those aviation services that benefit the entire public, the ground remains fertile for fee attempts to spring up again," said Andy Cebula, AOPA executive vice president of government affairs. "But our 415,000 members help us stay ahead." Read more on AOPA Online.

BATTLE FOR SANTA MONICA INTENSIFIES
The FAA has raised the stakes to a new high, saying it will involve the Department of Transportation (DOT) in the ongoing contest over the future of California's Santa Monica Municipal Airport. The battle over the airport has been going on for years, but a recent move by the city to create new restrictions at the airport has the FAA taking more aggressive measures. The FAA has said that it will take the extraordinary step of having the Department of Transportation withhold all federal transportation funding—not just airport money—from the city if it continues to pursue the restrictions and intention to close the airport. Read more on AOPA Online.

FAA TO CHART CONTACT FREQUENCIES FOR MOAS, RESTRICTED AREAS
Instead of feeling compelled to fly around charted military operations areas (MOAs) and restricted areas, soon you'll be able to gather real-time status information in the air to determine if you can safely fly through the airspace. The Air Force and Air National Guard have worked with the FAA to provide contact frequencies for an FAA center controller, military air traffic controller, or range control officer for each MOA and restricted area so that pilots can make a radio call to see if the airspace is active, and if it is, at what altitudes. The frequencies will appear with new charting cycles and be completed by the August cycle. Read more on AOPA Online.

LANDSBERG BRINGS SAFETY MESSAGE TO PILATUS PILOTS
AOPA Air Safety Foundation Executive Director Bruce Landsberg brought his safety message to turboprop pilots and owners at the twelfth annual Pilatus Owners and Pilots Association convention in Palm Coast, Fla., during the last week of May. "Capable aircraft require capable pilots and clear understanding of risk," Landsberg said. Nearly 100 people listened to Landsberg speak on a range of safety topics, including decision making, weather, and accident analysis. He also told attendees how the foundation's online courses, including IFR Insights and the Chart Challenge series, can benefit turboprop pilots. But Landsberg wasn't the only convention speaker to use the foundation's resources to educate this audience. Tom Goonen of SimCom used an example from the GPS for IFR course to teach pilots attending his GPS seminar.

AIRPORT RESURRECTED FOUR YEARS AFTER CLOSURE
It took unprecedented dedication and cooperation from politicians, pilots, and communities at large to create what some involved have called a miracle—the reopening of a general aviation airport four years after it closed. Read more on AOPA Online.

LARGEST AIRPORTS GET 30-HOUR TAFS
Just when you were getting comfortable with the coding of terminal area forecasts (TAFs), there is new date and time coding coming for extended 30-hour forecasts. The extended forecasts will be provided for 32 of the nation's largest airports starting Nov. 5. To comply with international standards, the forecasts for those cities will change from 24-hour predictions to 30-hour predictions, requiring a new method to show when part of the forecast falls on the following day. It's currently the top news on the government's Aviation Weather Center on the Internet. There is training available to help you read the new coding. The site also contains the background behind the decision and a list of the cities involved.

SEVERE WINDS TOSS AIRPLANES AT D.C. AIRPORT
Pilots need special clearances to fly to and from Potomac Airfield near Washington, D.C.—but tornadoes don't. A twister apparently touched down at the in-town field in the late afternoon on Saturday, May 31, and severely damaged or destroyed at least five airplanes tied down. The destructive winds were fickle, pummeling some airplanes while leaving others untouched a few feet away. Read more on AOPA Online.

FAA SURVEYS GA AIRCRAFT OWNERS ABOUT ACTIVITY
For the thirtieth consecutive year, the FAA is asking general aviation aircraft owners to take a survey designed to help the agency and industry pinpoint how, and how much, GA aircraft are used. Approximately one-third of GA aircraft owners will be randomly selected to participate in the voluntary survey, which is being conducted by an outside research firm. If you held an aircraft registration in December 2007, you could receive a survey form in the mail. Invited participants also may opt to complete the survey online. Individual responses are kept confidential, and overall data is used to better understand GA safety and activity levels. This year's survey is particularly important because it will be used to determine fatal accident rates—a measure that can be compared from year to year but relies on accurate data about hours flown. In the past, the FAA has reported accident numbers, rather than rates.

ECLIPSE LAUNCHES SINGLE-ENGINE JET, RAISES TWIN PRICES
The frenetic single-engine jet market got more crowded on May 30 when Eclipse Aviation announced that it plans to bring to market the Eclipse 400, a single-engine jet based on the concept airplane unveiled at EAA AirVenture last summer. The four-place 400 will be priced at $1.35 million in June 2008 dollars. The company expects certification and deliveries by late 2011. It will be powered by a Pratt & Whitney PW615 engine, making 1,200 pounds of thrust, derated from the engine's max thrust of 1,450 lbst. Read more on AOPA Online.

COUPLE CELEBRATES MARRIAGE WITH AIRPORT RECEPTION
When aviation brings you together, there's no better place to celebrate your union than at the airport. That's what Faith Olen-Glick and Caleb Glick thought when they held their wedding and later their reception at Faith's hangar at Virginia's Gordonsville Municipal Airport. Faith and Caleb had been friends for years when they both lost their spouses. Caleb's first wife and Faith were best friends, and Caleb taught Faith how to fly. After the death of Caleb's first wife from cancer and the loss of Faith's husband to a heart attack, Faith and Caleb lost touch. Read more on AOPA Online.

 For daily news updates, see AOPA Online.

Safety & Proficiency

PILOT IGNORES WARNING, LAUNCHES INTO THUNDERSTORM
Find out what happens when the pilot of a Cessna T206H Stationair departs Huntsville International-Carl T. Jones Field in Huntsville, Ala., headed directly toward an approaching level-five thunderstorm in this special report prepared by the AOPA Air Safety Foundation.

CAN AIRCRAFT MODIFICATIONS IMPROVE FUEL EFFICIENCY?
Pilots, along with anyone else who is propelled by an engine, are looking for ways to mitigate the sting at the pumps. So, can you just buy a silver bullet to save your aching fuel credit card? Read more at AOPA online.

FSS TIP OF THE WEEK: KICK THE 'K'
In an international context, airports in the 48 contiguous United States are prefixed with the ICAO country code "K." Because Lockheed Martin's flight service computer system is set up to automatically assume flights are domestic, pilots should not precede their airport identifier with a K unless they plan to fly internationally. Stating the K up front for a domestic flight could create extra steps for the briefer, thus slowing the process. Remember to phonetically spell airport identifiers to avoid miscommunication. For more FSS tips, download AOPA's quick reference card and take the AOPA Air Safety Foundation's A Pilot's Guide to Flight Service online minicourse. Complaints or compliments on your briefing? Report them to 888/358-7782.

CROSSWIND ENTRIES?
While there are many ways to enter the traffic pattern at nontowered airports, most pilots have a preference. If you enter the pattern on the crosswind leg, do you prefer to enter at pattern altitude midfield or the departure end of the runway? Share your thoughts in Bruce Landsberg's latest Safety eJournal update.

Inside AOPA

YOUR VOTE COUNTS IN 'PILOT' PHOTO CONTEST
Your vote will help choose the next "Photo of the Month" in the AOPA Pilot 2008 General Aviation Photography Contest. Go online and vote for your favorite from among the 12 best May entries chosen by AOPA Pilot staff. The photo with the most votes will be announced in next week's ePilot and will be published on AOPA Online and in an upcoming issue of AOPA Pilot. Enter your own photos in the contest before it closes Sept. 2. Cash prizes totaling more than $5,000 will be awarded, including a grand prize of $1,000.

STAY COVERED FOR AS LONG AS YOU INTEND TO PILOT AN AIRCRAFT
As you get older, you may want to consider selecting an insurance company to insure you for as long as you intend to pilot an aircraft. While, in most cases, aviation insurance companies will renew coverage for an active, current, and loss- and violation-free pilot, they may also have a pilot age limit beyond which they will not provide quotes for new business. Consult an experienced aviation insurance specialist about how various companies may apply such restrictions and factor this into your policy selection. Read more on AOPA Online.

AOPA ONLINE TRAVEL OFFERS SUMMER CRUISE SALE
AOPA members can take a summer escape with an unbeatable last-minute cruise deal. While you cruise to your destination, you'll also be helping to provide valuable revenue to AOPA at no additional cost to you. AOPA reinvests these funds to help grow the pilot population and to support its advocacy efforts. With "Top Summer Sailings," on Orbitz.com, you can save up to 70 percent. Choose from the best fleets and experience the most popular vacation destinations, including the Bahamas, Alaska, and Mediterranean. You'll pay just one low price for all your meals, accommodations, and most activities. Sail within 45 days and save big! To get credit for being an AOPA member, use this link to book your cruise.

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: When air traffic control clears me for an instrument approach after I have been in a hold, am I required to report leaving the hold?

Answer: Leaving an assigned holding fix is one of nine reports that should be made to ATC, as stated in Chapter 5-3-3 of the Aeronautical Information Manual. Other conditions that should be reported to ATC are: Vacating a previously assigned altitude for a newly assigned altitude; a change in altitude when operating VFR-on-top; when unable to climb/descend at a rate of at least 500 feet per minute; executing a missed approach procedure; a change in average true airspeed when it varies by 5 percent or 10 knots (whichever is greater) from that filed in the flight plan; time and altitude or flight level upon reaching an assigned holding fix; failure of any navigation equipment; and any information relating to the safety of flight.

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

UNVEILING A NEW AIRPLANE
It should be apparent at this point that AOPA's annual Fly-In and Open House will be taking place this weekend in Frederick, Md. It's a great event that brings out hundreds of exhibitors and thousands of eager members. One of the key draws this year will be AOPA's 2008 Get Your Glass Sweepstakes aircraft. Although there are still some minor clean-up items, the airplane is essentially finished. What better way to unveil it than at this year's fly-in? Log on to the sweepstakes home page for more information.

Picture Perfect

The AOPA Online Gallery allows you to download your favorite aviation images to use for wallpaper or send a personalized e-card. Search the hundreds of fabulous images in our archives and select your favorites today! For more details, see AOPA Online.

Weekend Weather
ePilot Calendar

UPCOMING FLYING DESTINATIONS:
Bartlesville, Okla. Biplane Expo 2008 takes place June 5 through 7 at Bartlesville Municipal (BVO). For more information, contact Charles W. Harris, 918/622-8400, or visit the Web site.

Reading, Pa. World War II weekend takes place June 6 through 8 at Reading Regional/Carl A. Spaatz Field (RDG). For more information, contact Brenda Saylor or Dave Schott, 610/372-7333, or visit the Web site.

Frederick, Md. The 18th Annual AOPA Fly-In and Open House takes place June 7 at Frederick Municipal (FDK). For more information, visit the Web site.

Atlanta, Ga. A Good Neighbor Day airshow and open house takes place June 7 at Dekalb Peachtree (PDK). For more information, contact Mario Evans, 770/936-5440, or visit the Web site.

Caldwell, Idaho A Festival of Flight airshow and classic car show takes place June 7 at Caldwell Industrial (EUL). For more information, contact Doug Bergner or Darin Hunt, 208/571-6804 or 208/459-0718, or visit the Web site.

South Lake Tahoe, Calif. A national Mooney fly-in takes place June 13 through 15 at Lake Tahoe (TVL). For more information, contact Phil Corman.

Chantilly, Va.  Become a Pilot Family Day will be held June 14 at the National Air and Space Museum Udvar-Hazy Center adjacent to Dulles (IAD). For more information, contact Doug Baldwin, 703/572-4061, or visit the Web site.

Hinesville/Fort Stewart, Ga. A Salute the Troops event takes place June 14 and 15 at Midcoast Regional at Wright Army Airfield (LHW). For more information, contact Cindy Jones, 912/368-3471, or visit the Web site.

St. Francis, Kan. The twenty-sixth annual Stearman fly-in takes place June 14 and 15 at Cheyenne County Municipal (SYF). For more information, contact Robert Grace, 785/332-2251, or visit the Web site.

Lock Haven, Pa. A Sentimental Journey Fly-In takes place June 17 through 21 at William T. Piper Memorial (LHV). For more information, contact Carmen, 570/893-420, 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 Orlando, Fla.; Charlotte, N.C.; and Reston, Va.; June 7 and 8. Clinics are also scheduled in Phoenix, Minneapolis, and Columbus, Ohio, June 21 and 22, and in San Jose, Calif., June 28 and 29. 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 at the AOPA Fly-In and Open House, June 7, in Frederick, Md. Topics vary—for details and a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.



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Editorial Team:

  • ePilot Editor: Alyssa Miller
  • Contributors: Nate Ferguson, Warren Morningstar, and Alton Marsh

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