Three Articles that Bear Repeating & Provide Insight
Don’t Underestimate General Aaviation
Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao today acknowledged concerns of the general aviation community about the proposal for an independent air traffic control system and vowed to continue to work with the groups to assuage their fears. However, she also said that those fears “are unfounded.”
Madame Secretary, starting a dialogue with a statement that GA fears are unfounded is not a great way to convince GA that you are a sympathetic partner in those discussions.
“The Transportation Safety Board of Canada says removing an ultralight aircraft from its perch high in a tree in Greenfield is the responsibility of the plane’s owner.”
On the face of that statement, it sounds like the NTSB du Nord does not rigorously follow the strict rules of controlling the accident site. But later in the article, it is made clear that the ultralight pilot was not hurt; that the accident did not pose important safety reasons to investigate.
However, the best part of this article is the description of the pilot’s evacuation regime:
When asked how scary it was to land his plane in a tree, and climb down to the ground, he laughed.
“Have you ever been a kid?” he asked. “Well, then you’ve climbed a tree before.”
He said his training taught him exactly what to do when his plane suddenly lost power.
“Through training, you learn that when the plane loses power you land straight ahead into the trees and the plane stops, and you get out and climb down the tree,” he said.
Should this procedure be included in Ultralight Best Practices Manual?
3. Inhofe’s GA initiatives:
Senator Inhofe also took time to talk about a piece of legislation he recently introduced to Congress called the Flight Act (Forward Looking Investment in General Aviation, Hangars and Tarmacs). If it passes, he said it would significantly help smaller airports.
Currently, every airport in the state of Oklahoma gets money each year that they can either spend or roll-over for a period of four years. If when that four years is up they haven’t spent the money, it goes into a bigger pot that any airport in the country can get. That includes the bigger airports like Dallas – Fort Worth International Airport and Will Rogers World Airport. If the Flight Act passes, that would change. It would make it to where they have five years to spend that money and if they don’t spend it, only small general the small general aviation airports would have access to the leftover money.”
“That’s not important to the very large communities because they are the ones who were always in the driver’s seat before. It is to what I refer to as the general aviation airports,” Inhofe said.
While FLIGHT is a statutory acronym to match Chairman Shuster’s AIRR, the Senator from Oklahoma has established a reputation for enacting substantive standards for aviation. GA and particularly GA airports can begin now to plan projects with the total of a five year AIP accumulation.
Count on it!!!
It should be noted that the Washington aviation pundits involved in the ATC Corporatization/Privatization/Reform have underestimated GA. Clearly these mavens of Inside the Beltway have forgotten the words of wisdom from one of the best Congressional politicians former Speaker of the United States House of Representatives Tip O’Neill.
“ALL POLITICS IS LOCAL”
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