Learning Experiences

September 2001 Issue

Circle, But How?

‘Halfway down the takeoff roll, I spotted the Seminole turning base for runway 27’

Last night I took off from runway 9 when an airplane was turning base for runway 27, forcing a go-around to save the situation. How could I have made such an egregious error? Quite easily, I’m afraid.

Now I can readily appreciate how some of those mid-air collisions at non-towered airports (or airports after the tower closes).

I am a 200-hour pilot and was out getting some night experience at an unfamiliar airport. The AWOS reported the winds were calm, so I had my choice of runway 9 or 27. The airport’s calm wind runway was runway 9 and an airplane had just taken off on 9, so I thought I would stay with the flow.

I taxied to the end of the runway and was conducting my runup when a...

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