Various Safety Topics Addressed By Aviation Professionals
The Greater Washington Business Aviation Association (GWBAA)
held its fourth annual Safety Standdown at the National
Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) Training Center in Ashburn, VA
on May 20. Speakers addressed the attendees on a variety of key
safety topics for aviation professionals.
The NTSB's Dr. Paul Schuda briefed the safety standdown
attendees on the TWA Flight 800 accident, the Boeing 747 that
exploded shortly after takeoff from JFK Airport on July 17,
1996. Schuda then led a tour of the reconstructed portion of
the fuselage of TWA Flight 800 at the Training Center, the only
accident aircraft that the NTSB has ever reconstructed.
AOPA Air Safety Foundation President Bruce Landsberg talked
about the growing number and complexity of the FARs in the
Aeronautical Information Manual and the need to avoid distractions
when flying, citing the recent Colgan Air accident.
Rick Rowe, chief pilot for the Bombardier Aerospace flight demo
team, noted in his presentation on "Challenging the Status Quo"
that in the last 10 years "80 percent of all accidents have been
caused by human error." Although CFIT (Controlled Flight Into
Terrain) used to be the primary cause of accidents, it is now Loss
of Control in Flight (LCIF), said Rowe. "Basic flying skills
continue to erode." Rowe also made reference to the Colgan Air
accident, in which fatigue and lack of pilot training have been
cited as contributing factors to the crash.
Dr. Paulo Alves, a cardiologist and vice president of aviation
and maritime health with MedAire, spoke about travel health and
fatigue management. "Violence is the number one cause of
death abroad and cardiac-related emergencies is the number two
cause," said Alves. Risk mitigation--researching the country where
are you headed for possible infectious diseases-is key to a safe
trip, said Alves.
Veteran aviation humorist, pilot and psychologist Rod Machado
entertained attendees with anecdotes and lessons about the various
kinds of errors pilots can make and how to avoid them.
"We are grateful to the attendees, speakers and sponsors of this
year's standdown," said GWBAA President Paige Kroner. "This
was another successful event with a lot of great safety tips from