Why Are “Accidents” Termed “Mishaps” in the Military?

Have you ever noticed the military does not use the term “accident” or “accident investigation?” They use the term “mishap.” The reason, I think, is that all these “unintended occurrences” are driven by human actions and not some invisible “hand of god.” The term “accident” seems dismissive like “stuff happens” or the passive voice “it … Continue reading “Why Are “Accidents” Termed “Mishaps” in the Military?”

Reflective Learning; Immediate Pilot Improvement!

The US NAVY wisely called a halt to all flying Monday for a Safety Stand-Down after a series of fatal accidents. This “time out” allowed the necessary pause “to review risk-management practices and conduct training on threat and error-management processes.” This should sound familiar to every pilot at every level since self-aware risk management is … Continue reading “Reflective Learning; Immediate Pilot Improvement!”

Reflect and Redirect; “Double Loop” Learning!

Pilots are a “different breed of cat” as you well know. As a personality type we are confident, higher than average in intelligence, tend toward dominance and are almost never wrong about anything! (ask my wife…) “Never wrong” is “sort of” a joke but you know our tribe; pretty self-assured and assertive, with perfectionist tendencies. … Continue reading “Reflect and Redirect; “Double Loop” Learning!”

Learning Well is an Acquired Skill!

Most people think “learning from experience” is easy, or natural, but neither is true in a high-consequence environment. It takes serious effort and a disciplined awareness to learn well when safety is a critical concern. Some “successes” may be accepted as valuable – but only after careful analysis. Many other “successes” should be rejected as … Continue reading “Learning Well is an Acquired Skill!”

Gut Check: Caution Vs “Courage!”

Confidence is a necessary pilot attribute and timidity can be a hazard. If we did not dream big and overcome reasonable challenges, we would never succeed in aviation. But carrying this too far is often the root cause of accidents. “Over-reaching” our skills creates operations whose success depends on luck. The correct balance of caution … Continue reading “Gut Check: Caution Vs “Courage!””

Learning Requires Continuous Corrections!

All complex successes are built on less-than-optimal early attempts or honest reassessment of a failure or mistake with a commitment to improve. Learning at any level is iterative, continuous, and occasionally emotionally painful. The mantra for all pilots is to honestly “reflect and correct!” Everyone can play the role of “superior critic,” judging from the … Continue reading “Learning Requires Continuous Corrections!”

“Full Control Maneuvering” for Safety!

Our current pilot training process provides very little serious flight maneuvering. Most pilots never achieve an adequate level of maneuvering skill or aerodynamic understanding to be truly safe outside their “comfort zone.” The minimal amount of training provided and tested at the private level never solidifies with the rush into IFR training. Many new pilots … Continue reading ““Full Control Maneuvering” for Safety!”

Real CFI Learning *Begins* With Temporary!

If you are a new CFI, congratulations and welcome to the challenge of aviation education. If you know someone that just qualified, please share this article with that person since their learning is just starting. Enjoy the aura of accomplishment and the social media adulation for a week or two. But it is critically important … Continue reading “Real CFI Learning *Begins* With Temporary!”

The SAFE CFI’s “Most Wanted List”

There is a great frustration watching accidents repeating themselves for obvious preventable causes. Gene Benson is a passionate aviation safety educator. He analyzes every accident and recommends better practices to prevent these unhappy outcomes. In the absence of NTSB recommendations for General Aviation, Gene has creeated a list based on his extensive experience and study: … Continue reading “The SAFE CFI’s “Most Wanted List””

Best Holiday Wishes!

From all of us at SAFE, our heartfelt wishes for a very warm and blessed holiday season for our readers, members, and supporters. Hopefully, you find yourself among family and friends, enjoying some time away from the usual demands of life. And every year’s end is also a time to reflect and reformulate our plans … Continue reading “Best Holiday Wishes!”