April 2008 Issue

Safer Flight Maneuvering

Understanding and using available tools to make us think in three dimensions can help minimize this type of accident.

In this series’ first installment ("The Problem With Flight Training," March 2008), we identified a few of the systemic errors and omissions committed during flight training, and how they feed into typical aviation accidents. We dealt primarily with issues pertaining to the mechanics of flying an airplane. In this second of three articles, we’ll look at some of the psychological aspects involved. A lot of educational material has been generated in recent years on aeronautical decision making, hazardous attitudes and cockpit resource management. The FAA has been actively promoting the Perceive-Process-Perform (P-P-P) risk management decision path as well. Perceiving risk in the P-P-P model is aided with the PAVE checklist; processing levels of risk is facilitated with the CARE checklist; and performing risk management is prompted by the TEAM checklist (see the sidebar on page 6 for more).

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