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today’s top stories
Cessna completes 9,000 airplanes at Independence plant
Cessna Aircraft has delivered its 9,000th single-engine piston airplane built at Independence, Kan. Cessna customer Rob Logozio took delivery of the 9,000th aircraft, a 182T Skylane, during a ceremony at Cessna’s Independence facility. Logozio purchased his 2010 Skylane from Panorama Flight Service in White Plains, N.Y. Read more >>
Paper to plastic: March 31 deadline approaches
If you’re still flying using your paper pilot certificate, time is running out to switch to a plastic certificate. Pilots are required to obtain plastic pilot certificates from the FAA by March 31 if exercising airmen privileges. To make sure you don’t have to wait on the ground for your new certificate, request it now on the FAA Web site.
Space Station wins Collier Trophy
The National Aeronautic Association will award the 2009 Robert J. Collier Trophy on May 13 to the International Space Station. The award is for the “design, development, and assembly” of the structure that promises new discoveries and a new level of international cooperation. Read more >>
If you happen to be at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh on July 26, you’ll get to see the loose formation arrival of an expected 40 Douglas DC–3 and C–47 aircraft, led by a modern U.S. Air Force C–17 and three of the DC–3s. The celebration, organized by a group called The Last Time, will assemble during the weekend of July 24 and 25 at Rock Falls, Ill. It is expected to be the largest formation of DC–3s and their military counterparts since World War II. Read more >>
A controller and his supervisor were placed on administrative leave from JFK tower for allowing a child to control aircraft. Transmissions heard on a Fox News blog indicate the child was probably under a controller’s supervision. The child is heard to clear several aircraft for takeoff, and advises those aircraft after takeoff to change frequency, adding a cheery, “Adios, amigo,” to the end of one of the calls. Read more >>
Brownback cautions against restrictions on GA
As lawmakers and regulators consider the proper response to the Feb. 18 crash of a Piper Cherokee into an office building in Austin, Texas, a supporter of general aviation in Congress says unnecessary restrictions on GA are not the answer. Sen. Sam Brownback (R-Kan.), a member of the Senate GA Caucus, cautioned against additional burdens on the industry in a press release Feb. 26. “People within the general aviation community are totally committed to the safe and secure operation of the system and take great pride in looking for ways to continually improve it,” Brownback said. Read more >>
WWII women pilots to receive Congressional Gold Medal
Members of the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) of World War II will be honored March 10 for their service with a Congressional Gold Medal. The presentation will take place in the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C. The medal will be placed on exhibit in the Smithsonian Institution and pays tribute to the more than 1,100 former members, about 300 of whom are alive today. Read more >>
Haiti relief: Writing the airlift
When he heard about the devastation in Haiti after the earthquake in January, Pat Dolan wanted to do more than text $10 to the Red Cross. He read about Bahamas Habitat, a missionary group that was trying to recruit volunteer pilots and aircraft to fly medical supplies and food into Haiti. But could they possibly use him—a weekend pilot based in Long Island, N.Y.—and his Navajo Chieftain? The answer was yes. Dolan joined fellow general aviation pilots in offering up his skills and aircraft to contribute to what has become an ad-hoc airlift to the Caribbean nation. He and other pilots have shared their personal accounts of transporting supplies and personnel to Haiti on PiReps, a pilot community site where AOPA members can submit stories, tips, and experiences. Read Dolan’s story >>
Winston Churchill, pilot, dies of cancer
Winston Churchill, grandson of the famous British leader during World War II and a lifelong pilot, died at his home in London. He had prostate cancer. Churchill was a member of the House of Commons and a graduate of Oxford, but he spent a great deal of time in the United States as well. Read more >>
The longest cross-country
Michael Combs is a plugged-in pilot. After each flight, he posts an update on Twitter and his blog. While in flight, he uses a satellite-tracking device to let his followers know where he is at all times. In most respects, Combs is no different than many of today’s high-tech aviators. In one respect, however, he stands out. In April, Combs will launch on an ambitious 50-state tour of the United States in a Remos GX light sport aircraft. He’s calling it The Flight for the Human Spirit, and for Combs, it is the ultimate expression of a personal philosophy: to live life with no regrets. Read more >>
AOPA praises pilots willing to ‘drop everything and fly’
The question, “Can you drop everything and …?” is usually followed by pained groans and rolled eyes; this wasn’t the case for Sean Sanders, Epps Aviation, and many pilots across the country. During a trip to Fort Myers, Fla., and Atlanta, Ga., March 1 and 2, AOPA Foundation President Karen Gebhart recognized pilots and organizations that have been willing to drop everything and get involved in their communities: a pilot who donated his time and proficiency to help the Haitian relief efforts; his workplace, which contributed resources to the efforts; and the Atlanta Aero Club, which has reached out to state government in its support for aviation. Read more >>
‘Aviation eBrief’ keeps you up to date with daily news
Want a quick way to stay abreast of all that’s happening in general aviation? Aviation eBrief, a daily e-mail newsletter sponsored by AOPA, is a daily collection of 10 articles, compiled from aviation and general news sources around the country. The GA-focused articles are intended to give you a snapshot each day of what’s going on in the industry, at airports, and on Capitol Hill. More than 170,000 aviation enthusiasts have subscribed to Aviation eBrief. Interested? Check your inbox March 8 through 12—you might receive a trial issue that invites you to subscribe to the free newsletter. You can sign up online if you don’t receive an invitation. Read more >>
Olympic TFR lasts beyond closing ceremony
The 2010 Olympic Winter Games have ended, but the temporary flight restriction (TFR) for the area is still in effect. The TFR continues in the United States through March 12. Flight restrictions in Canada remain in effect through the Paralympic Games, so check with Nav Canada if flying into the Vancouver area.
For daily news updates, see AOPA Online.
women in aviation 2010
Be a 'force multiplier'
The most senior ranking woman in the history of the United States Coast Guard told attendees at the closing banquet of the International Women in Aviation conference that they could have their dreams—and then share them with others. Be a “force multiplier,” Vice Admiral Vivien Crea told the diverse audience of pilots, mechanics, flight attendants, journalists, and engineers—men and women alike. Crea was one of five inductees into the association’s International Pioneer Hall of Fame announced at the banquet. Attendance at the convention reached nearly 3,000 women and men, an all-time high for the event. Read more >>
More Women in Aviation News:
Two missed approaches are one too many
Pilots who are paid to carry passengers aren’t allowed to even attempt an instrument approach if the weather is below that approach’s published minimums. General aviation pilots flying under Part 91 are under no such constraint. They’re free to request and fly the approach no matter how low the weather. But the fact that something is possible doesn’t make it wise, and the fact that it’s legal doesn’t make it safe. Just before 8:30 a.m. on Feb. 16, 2008, a Lancair LC41 crashed into trees after missing a second approach to Portland (Oregon) International Airport. The pilot had tried two ILS approaches after having been advised by the tower that the ground visibility was only 600 feet, one-third the published minimum. The ceiling was also low at 100 feet broken; decision height was 200 feet agl. Read more in this special report from the AOPA Air Safety Foundation.
Proper care helps aircraft battle the elements
It shows up first as a whitish or gray “dulling” of the aluminum surface of your aircraft. Then it may progress to more and more severe pitting, until it eventually destroys the metal. Left untreated, corrosion can make an aircraft unairworthy in just a few years. If you base your aircraft in a coastal area where the air is moist, it may be particularly prone to corrosion, but you can take steps to help protect it. Hangaring, frequent washing, and regular treatment with rust inhibitors can slow the deterioration of aircraft from corrosion significantly. Find out where to check for damage from corrosion in the AOPA Pilot Information Center’s Aircraft Corrosion subject report. For more tips on lengthening the life of your aircraft, take the AOPA Air Safety Foundation course Aging Aircraft .
Wire strikes can happen to pilots in any type of aircraft. Low-altitude airspace is increasingly crowded, and obstructions like telecommunications antennas and electrical transmission wires may have been built since the last aeronautical chart was published. The services helicopters provide, such as firefighting, emergency medical services, or newsgathering, often require operating at 1,000 feet or lower—putting rotorcraft at increased risk. “Surviving the Wires Environment,” a safety awareness video produced by Southern California Edison, Helicopter Association International, and AEGIS Insurance Services Inc., discusses the dangers of low-level flying and basic safety protocols for the “wires environment.” AOPA Air Safety Foundation President Bruce Landsberg weighs in during the 25-minute video about factors that make the lethality rate of wire-strike accidents double. Watch the video >>
FAA ‘Aviation News’ becomes ‘Safety Briefing’
The publication FAA Aviation News is changing its name to FAA Safety Briefing starting with the March/April 2010 issue, available now on the FAA Web site. “We’re changing the name to more accurately reflect the magazine’s mission: safety,” said John Allen, director of FAA flight standards service. The bimonthly publication focuses on general aviation.
Oklahoma considering land-use legislation
Bills to protect Oklahoma airports from obstructions and incompatible land use have made it through House and Senate committees. The deadline for the bills to be heard on the House and Senate floor is March 11. The Oklahoma House Transportation Committee unanimously passed HB 2919, The Aircraft Pilot and Passenger Protection Act. The act would protect public-use airports from obstructions and incompatible land use within specific distances from the airport. The Senate version unanimously passed the Transportation Committee in February. Read more >>
CORRECTION: In the Feb. 26 edition of AOPA ePilot, we incorrectly stated the date of the Valkaria Air Fest. The Air Fest was held Feb. 20.
To learn more about the Airport Support Network, visit ASN Online.
Air Safety eJournal: Do we need a knowledge test?
AOPA Air Safety Foundation President Bruce Landsberg discusses what purpose the FAA knowledge test serves—and whether we need it at all. Read more >>
Hover Power: Thoughts on EMS training
The helicopter EMS industry is struggling with a high accident rate. Several months ago, the NTSB published recommendations ranging from equipment requirements to increased training, and many in the industry expect the FAA to mandate one or more of those recommendations this year. Read more >>
CORRECTION: The Air Safety eJournal blog entry cited in the Feb. 26 edition of ePilot incorrectly described the area in which Palo Alto Airport is located. The airport is in a relatively open area.
Bank of America comes through for AOPA member
When Adam Epstein, an insurance adjuster from Milford, Mass., decided to buy an airplane, he definitely shopped around—but not for financing. “I went straight to AOPA,” he says, “because I value their opinion and they provide great resources.” When he learned that the financing would be through Bank of America, that was a plus: Bank of America is Epstein’s regular bank. Read more >>
You and AOPA benefit from rental car discounts
You’re right to ask, “What’s in it for me?” when it comes to the discounts you receive at Alamo, Avis, Enterprise, and Hertz as an AOPA member. But AOPA benefits along with you. Part of your rental fee is returned to AOPA by the car rental companies so that the association can put those funds to use on behalf of general aviation. Read more >>
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: Do you have to be a U.S. citizen to own a U.S.-registered airplane?
Answer: No. Under 14 CFR 47.7, an applicant registering a U.S. aircraft may be either a U.S. citizen or a resident alien. If in a co-ownership agreement, any combination of U.S. citizens and resident aliens is permitted. For someone who is neither a resident alien nor a citizen, ownership can be arranged through a trust or a non-citizen corporation (see 14 CFR 47.9).
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].
AOPA’s online photo gallery allows you to upload your own aviation photography as well as view, rate, and comment on others’ photos. Your favorite aviation images from AOPA Pilot are still available online through this new gallery. Take a look, and submit your own photos!
Aviation Events & Weather
Want something to do this weekend? Planning an aviation getaway? See your personalized 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 in your region to your planning easier. You can also bookmark the personalized calendar page to check it as often as you want. Before you take off on an adventure, make sure you check our current aviation weather provided by Jeppesen.
Engage with AOPA
To celebrate the Centennial of Licensed Women Pilots, women pilots from around the world will attempt to set a new worldwide flying record: the most women pilots introducing another woman to flying in one single day, March 8, and in one single week, March 6 to 12. Visit the Web site to register and post your availability in the volunteer forum.
Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics
The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics are scheduled in Orlando, Fla., March 6 and 7; San Mateo, Calif., and Baltimore, Md., March 13 and 14; Ontario, Calif., March 20 and 21; Phoenix, Ariz., King of Prussia, Pa., and Virginia Beach, Va., March 27 and 28; San Diego, Calif., Cincinnati, Ohio, and Ashburn, Va., April 10 and 11; Denver, Colo., Boston, Mass., and Salt Lake City, Utah, April 17 and 18; Tampa, Fla., Atlanta, Ga., and Indianapolis, Ind., April 24 and 25. 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 Rochester, Minn., March 8; Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and Portland, Ore., March 9; Seattle, Wash., and Olathe, Kan., March 10; Bedford, Mass., March 15; Ypsilanti, Mich., March 22; Birmingham, Ala., Northbrook, Ill., and Cleveland, Ohio, March 23; Marietta, Ga., Bolingbrook, Ill., Gaithersburg, Md., and Columbus, Ohio, March 24; Rockford, Ill., and Indianapolis, Ind., March 25; Brooklyn Center, Minn., March 29; Clayton, Mo., and Pittsburgh, Pa., April 5; Springfield, Mo., and New Cumberland, Pa., April 6; Allentown, Pa., April 7; King of Prussia, Pa., April 8; Lynchburg, Va., April 13. Topics vary—for details and a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.
Got news? Contact ePilot. Having difficulty using this service? Visit the ePilot Frequently Asked Questions now at AOPA Online or write to [email protected].