FAA finalizes rule on student pilot certificates
Starting April 1, aviation medical examiners will no longer issue student pilot certificates, under a final rule published Jan. 12. The majority of future applicants will apply through a flight instructor, but the FAA also has given the option of applying in person through FAA inspectors at their local flight standards district office, designated pilot examiners, or airman certificate representatives from a Part 141 flight school. Those representatives will accept and process applications but they won’t issue the certificates—which will be plastic. AOPA’s Pilot Information Center has produced a podcast that delves into the details of the new rule. Read more >>
NTSB targets GA loss-of-control accidents
In its 2016 Most Wanted list of safety improvements, the National Transportation Safety Board once again called for more effort to prevent loss-of-control accidents by general aviation pilots. NTSB Chairman Christopher Hart Jan. 13 emphasized the losses rather than gains in light aviation safety, and compared personal aviation unfavorably to other types of general aviation, including business travel. Read more >>
Mooney M10T trainer makes first flight
Mooney International’s new trainer, the M10T, made a 15-minute flight in Chino, California, in December 2015. The three-seat proof-of-concept airplane is powered by a Continental CD-135 engine that runs on Jet-A fuel. It is a composite, fixed-gear airplane. The M10T is aimed at the international market. Announced in 2014, its certification is not expected for several years.
National Weather Service seeks comments on graphical replacement for area forecasts
Pilots are getting their first look at the graphics-intensive weather products designed to replace the area forecast, and the National Weather Service wants your input. Take an electronic survey by April 11 to let NWS know what you think of the experimental graphical forecasts. Area forecasts are set to be discontinued in 2016 for the lower 48 states. They will continue to be available for the time being for Alaska, Hawaii, the Caribbean, and the Gulf of Mexico.
Nashua Flight Simulator is now National Flight Simulator
The former Nashua Flight Simulator has changed its name to National Flight Simulator, the company announced Jan. 13. President and Chief Executive Officer Stephen Cunningham said the change reflects client and revenue growth, and an increased geographic service area. National Flight Simulator, headquartered in Manchester, New Hampshire, specializes in recurrent training programs and instrument proficiency checks for piston twin-engine, turbo twin-engine, high-performance single-engine, and turbo single-engine aircraft. In January 2015 the company moved from Boire Field Airport in Nashua to Manchester Airport (MHT).
A flat spot on a tire and a deflated nose gear strut presented two flight schools with opportunities to share teachable moments with their customers. Jill W. Tallman says you can capitalize on unplanned events that show your customers how to be better, safer pilots—and take better care of your fleet in the process. Read more >>
Who is your biggest competitor?
It might be another flight school at your airport—or simply another recreational activity. Who or what is your business’s biggest competitor? Take the poll >>
In the last issue, we asked whether your local FBO discounts your flight school’s fuel purchases. Here are the results:
Not your everyday intro flight
AeroVenture Institute Flight Training Center of Southbridge, Massachusetts, developed the Top Gun package as a better introduction to flying. This amped-up experience lets customers dive into flight training without making a commitment. Read more >>
How can you add value in ways your customers have come to expect that don’t break your bottom line? Provide lots of free resources, such as study sheets. Give free seminars. Sell solo simulator time at half the rate of dual. Small gestures quickly add up to make a student believe that he or she is in the right place to train.
Seize the moment
A good instructor recognizes when to make the most of each teaching opportunity. An unintentional spin from a power-on stall, for example, is a good excuse to digress from the syllabus and delve into spin aerodynamics. Read more >>
Editor: Jill W. Tallman
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