The standard advice to avoid a wake turbulence encounter is to wait a bit, to give some room when taking off or landing right behind a large aircraft. And that is good, practical, physics-based advice. But what about when you hit wake turbulence and have to recover? What’s being rediscovered is when actually encountering serious wake turbulence, the best thing to do is: Nothing. Well, not just nothing, but initially just wait. That’s right, wait. You may be rapidly going inverted but don’t do anything yet. Breathe for a second. Resist the strong urge from our primal flying nature to quickly move the … Continue reading Wake? Wait!
“Aircraft do not crash of themselves.” Tough love? Too harsh? Nevil Shute did include designers and managers in his paradigm of human error. Quote from Slide Rule: The Autobiography of an Engineer, 1954.
In the book Gift of Wings, Richard Bach writes about the people who look up to the sky to watch airplanes, people who slow down when driving past airports. He says, “If you act this way, it’s possible that in flight you’ll find much to learn of yourself and of the path of your life on this planet.” Of course, he’s right. Gentle words reminding us that the sky is a calling. A higher pursuit of man. And the sky, like the wilderness or the sea, requires our constant application and respect.
“Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, Drink the wild air‘s salubrity.” Ralph Waldo Emerson preface of ‘Considerations by the Way’ published in ‘The Conduct of Life’,(1860, revised 1876).
“At last I understood what true professionalism is. Being a pilot isn’t all seat-of-the-pants flying and glory. It’s self-discipline, practice, study, analysis and preparation. It’s precision. If you can’t keep the gauges where you want them with everything free and easy, how can you keep them there when everything goes wrong?” Charles D. Svoboda Flying magazine, November 1976. Old editions of Flying magazine are archived by Google books. This amazing article is online for free in the November 1976 edition, and certainly deserves a new audience. It’s about making a foggy zero/zero landing in a huge prop plane. Lots of good … Continue reading Zero/Zero, Charles D. Svovoda