October 2001 Issue

Unseen, Unheard

Combine an airplane with poor landing visibility with a Nordo ground vehicle, and disaster results

[IMGCAP(1)] Hereís a news flash: There is no such thing as a perfect flight. Every pilot is forced to examine the airplane he is about to fly, his own skills and the demands of the mission, and make judgment calls about the risks involved and how to minimize them.

Sometimes the calls are easy, with the intended flight well within the limitations of the airplane and pilot or so far outside those capabilities that a decision is black and white. Most times, however, the choice requires not so much a go/no-go decision as an analysis of where the pitfalls of the flight might be.

In those cases, a pilotís experience leads to certain assumptions, for better or for worse. Just as you may expec...

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