Monday, February 03, 2014

Ditching Instructions

I'm delivering recurrent emergency training to pilot and non-pilot crewmembers in a couple of weeks, so I sat down to brainstorm some of the items to cover. Challenge-response checklists, the names of the various levers, the protocol for what to say if the right engine is on fire and the pilot asks you to confirm left as she shuts it down. (Hint, not "right!"). I covered evacuation, including special life-saving tips like "wait until the aircraft has stopped moving" and "be careful not to get run over by a firetruck". It would be depressing that so much of training people consists of telling them what they could figure out for themselves, except that it in comparison to reading reports of accidents caused or exacerbated by people not doing things they could figure out for themselves, it's not depressing at all.

I move onto bullet points for the Off-Airport Landing. We don't fly floats or bushplanes, so this represents a fairly drastic emergency situation. I type in ...

  • possible reasons
  • pilot briefs situation
  • secure cargo, self
  • consider needs
  • distress call
  • landing configuration
  • brace position
  • evacuate

An extreme form of off-airport landing is ditching, landing on the water. That's obviously going to be the next item. As I'm starting on that, I notice that one of my keycaps is loose, so I wiggle it into place and press down on it to fix it. Then I look back at my document. It says...

  • aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

Maybe I'll leave it like that.


Rhonda said...

I thought "aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa" was the emergency procedure for losing air supply while scuba diving. (In conjunction with swimming to the surface no faster than your bubbles.)

sean said...

Do it!!
But make sure to precede it with "this is on the test, so make sure you're paying attention"

Ed Davies said...

'Hint, not "right!"'

Good point. Like the Moon landings: all the checks in mission control were answered “go” or “no-go” except for the special case just after landing on the Moon where a quick decision was needed whether to stay while the command module did another orbit or relaunch almost immediately while it was still possible to make a rendezvous quickly and there was worry about confusion saying “go” to stay and “no-go” to go or v-v hence the “stay/no-stay” calls.

Georg said...

"pilot briefs situation"

This made me giggling as a non native speaker - when reading it first i had to think of the pilot's underwear situation...