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Insurance company fighting loss of control

Insurance company USAIG has expanded its safety efforts by naming Aviation Performance Solutions of Mesa, Arizona, as a partner in helping to prevent turbine general aviation accidents. Aviation Performance Solutions becomes the eleventh company in the insurance company’s Performance Vector program to encourage safety training through payment of tuition for a wide variety of programs.

Aviation Performance Solutions is the only member of the program to focus entirely on upset prevention and recovery training aimed especially at what today is recognized as a leading cause of fatal accidents in the GA community—loss of control. It is the focus of an upcoming seminar in October by the National Transportation Safety Board and is the subject of a safety standdown at the National Business Aviation Association convention in Las Vegas in mid-November.

USAIG’s Paul Ratté said there appear to be a combination of factors at work in loss-of-control accidents. These include the degree of training the pilot has had, systems management issues, and a lack of emphasis on aerodynamic principles during training. Ratté said he is aware of discussion in the training community as to whether use of an actual aircraft is best, or whether it should be done solely in a simulator or perhaps a combination of the two. Asked why pilots who are taught to control an airplane from initial training appear to have difficulty doing so, Ratté said, “That's the million-dollar question even at major carrier levels.”

Aviation Performance Solutions is considered a world leader in upset training, Ratté said, although he said he recognized there are equally qualified competitors. The association with Aviation Performance Solutions offers training incentives only to turbine operators. There are several safety programs from which to select. The Aviation Performance Solutions option covers tuition for one pilot to attend the course at the company's Phoenix or Dallas location. The course includes approximately eight hours of classroom instruction and three flights in an Extra 300L. The classroom instruction includes “stall and airplane upset aerodynamics; precursors; recognition, prevention and recovery techniques; spin awareness and recovery techniques; and instrument upset recognition and recovery techniques,” USAIG said in a news release.

Other safety programs are offered with these USAIG partners: Aircare International for emergency procedures training; Robert E. Breiling Associates for accident analysis; C-FOQA Centerline for flight department data analysis; Convergent Performance for human factors training; FlightSafety for simulator training; Hiscox Global Flying for insurance against the financial consequences of loss of license; IS-BAO for flight department approaches to aviation safety; the National Air Transportation Association’s Safety 1st program for line service and ground support training; PRISM for safety management solutions; and Pulsar Informatics for reducing fatigue risk.

Alton Marsh

Alton K. Marsh

Freelance journalist
Alton K. Marsh is a former senior editor of AOPA Pilot and is now a freelance journalist specializing in aviation topics.
Topics: Training and Safety, Accident, Technology

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