September 2000 Issue

Four-Letter Words

Ignorance about accidents may be another link in the poor judgment chain

Go to the index of any publication devoted to flight training and try to find the word “accident.” Hint: Don’t look between “accelerated stall” and “adverse yaw,” because you won’t find it there.

This apparently dirty word is rarely used in any pilot training manual or handbook. If it does appear, it will usually be part of nebulous advice such as “safety is no accident” or a reference to the regulation that accidents must be reported promptly.

In fact, accident training is not required for student pilots and, for all practical purposes, none is provided. This is the primary reason why most pilots are not familiar with the circumstances and trends that comprise the general aviation a...

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