December 2011 Issue

Safety Pilot Concerns

Even if we stay painfully current for IFR, it’s always a good idea to do some proficiency work with a safety pilot, except when you both try to fly the plane.

Staying current for IFR—with six approaches, some holding and course interceptions within the preceding six months—isn’t that hard for the active instrument pilot. When you enter engine replacements in your logbook instead of hours, you probably don’t need much in the way of practice. But the guy or gal who’s lucky to get their wings wet in some actual once or twice a year has a different challenge. Somewhere in the middle between the two extremes is where most instrument-rated pilots find themselves, of course. Regardless, even the ace of the base needs to go out occasionally and practice a few things, if for no other reason than to get through the next check ride.

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