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Dirty Dozen: 12 ways your drone can land you in trouble

38
Drones are becoming increasingly popular throughout society—being flown by kids with no aviation knowledge at the local park or by experienced pilots conducting complex commercial operations. With this popularity comes an increasing awareness of...

Properly clear of the prop?

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by Phillip Zamagias How many times have we been told ‘treat every propeller as if it is live’? Like many things in aviation, years of doing repetitive tasks with no apparent danger can breed a familiarity...

Do not go gentle: the harsh facts of hypoxia

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Five months after the disappearance of Malaysian Flight MH370, authorities believe that a hypoxia event best fits the available evidence for the jetliner with 239 people on board to go missing. In the aftermath of one of...

178 seconds to live—VFR into IMC

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Flights operating under visual flight rules (VFR) flying into instrument meteorological conditions (IMC) remains a prominent safety issue, with the Australian Transport Safety Bureau recording 111 occurrences over the last 10 years, investigating 18 serious incidents...

Video shows bags delaying evacuation

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Passenger video from yesterday’s accident to an Emirates Boeing 777 at Dubai shows something anyone with interest and commitment to aviation safety would rather not see: some passengers reaching for their luggage in an...

No second chances

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Why gliding experience makes us safer pilots. Kreisha Ballantyne experiences the seven valuable skills advanced by gliding. Clunk! That’s both the sound of the tug rope leaving the glider and the sound of your brain realising...

Point it, call it, get it right

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How Japanese railway theatre could make aviation safer There’s free entertainment on trains in Japan. Ride near the driver’s or conductor’s positions and you can watch them making bold gestures, accompanied by confident and abrupt...
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The brace position: what passengers need to know

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It seems absurd that something as simple as changing your sitting posture in a vehicle travelling at up to 1200 km/h groundspeed could make a difference to your odds of surviving a crash, but...

Your one and only: mitigating the risk of engine failure in singles

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by Nicholas Stobie Every pilot flying twins remembers the mantra driven into them during their initial training: Maintain Control, Mixture Up, Pitch Up, Power Up, Gear Up, Flap Up, Dead Leg—Dead Engine, Confirm, Identify and...
Female pilot Tracy Lamb

Women’s work

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Evidence suggests women have the right stuff to be safe pilots and engineers. So why aren’t more of them doing it?  ‘… when I think of women on planes, I don’t think of women as...

Safety in mind: Normalisation of deviance

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Diane Vaughan is an American sociologist who has spent her career studying organisations where deviations from rules and practices become the norm—often with devastating consequences. Your phone bleeps while you’re driving and you can’t resist...
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The Seaview disaster: conscience, culture and complicity

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Adrian Park reflects on the grim but important lessons from a watershed crash that happened 20 years ago A little after midday, on Sunday 2 October 1994, an Aero Commander 690 operated by Seaview Air...

It was almost all over: the destruction of China Airlines flight 120

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There is a tangible sense of relief when a large passenger aircraft touches down. The sound of the landing gear reacquainting itself with the earth is indeed a cheery sound—especially when it’s accompanied by...

Surprise greeting turned into soggy mess

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An embarrassing and potentially dangerous incident (its official classification) in Dubai is a reminder that aviation safety extends to when the aircraft is on the ground. On 20 September 2018 at 10:38 local time, a...
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Without warning: the startle factor

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‘#$@! we’re going to crash! This can’t be true! But what’s happening?’ were the last words from pilot David Robert on board Air France flight 447 as it crashed into the Atlantic ocean, in...

New drone has built-in ADS-B

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Drone manufacturer DJI has announced its latest model will have a built-in automatic dependant surveillance broadcast (ADS-B) receiver. Due to be released over the coming months, the Matrice 200 (M200) series is marketed on adaptability...

Phoney maintenance

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by Roger Alder ‘Never, in the history of aviation maintenance, have so many been distracted by so little.’ With apologies to Sir Winston Churchill, who was paying respect to WWII Battle of Britain air aces. The...

Single and loving it: making the turboprop transition

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Thomas P. Turner describes how to lift your game to match the demands of the ultimate propeller-driven aeroplane type  Congratulations! You’re about to transition into a single-engine turboprop (SETP). You’ll need to use most of...

One thing at a time: a brief history of the checklist

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The pilot was known as extremely capable and meticulous, and ‘an officer and gentleman of truly great distinction’. At age 41, he was chief test pilot of the US Army Air Corps and had...
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The myths of pilot error

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Since the legend of Icarus, pilots have copped the blame for not following policies (i.e. don’t fly too close to the sun) and causing aircraft crashes. Over the century of powered flight, innumerable newsreaders,...