Is There Really an Airline Pilot Shortage? My Niece Is Interested in Becoming a Pilot

Is there really a pilot shortage or are the airlines flying smaller numbers of passengers, using smaller jets when they could be flying much larger jets and hauling two to four times as many passengers with the same two pilots?

Challenger Disaster Revisited

The NASA Space Shuttle Challenger disaster was 100% preventable. Why this claim, when cold weather is commonly cited as the cause of the O ring malfunctions that allowed hot gases from the solid rocket booster to penetrate the big orange liquid fuel tanks? NASA engineers and rocket maker Morton Thiokol engineers had seen O ringContinue reading “Challenger Disaster Revisited”

Kobe Bryant Helicopter Mishap

Kobe Bryant, his family members and traveling companions died in a helicopter flown by a pilot who flew into clouds, then flew into a mountain, instead of turning around and remaining clear of clouds and safely above terrain. The first set of questions that come to the forefront are these: Was the pilot instrument ratedContinue reading “Kobe Bryant Helicopter Mishap”

Is the B737MAX Angle of Attack Comparator Systems news story a Distraction from Two Critical Safety Issues?

Is the discussion about the optional equipment of B737MAX angle of attack AoA data comparator systems diverting the discussion from two of the most central safety issues, safety hazard reporting and rapid response, and the full extent of flight crew training? Why ask that question? First, the specific hazard of a malfunctioning AoA probe and/orContinue reading “Is the B737MAX Angle of Attack Comparator Systems news story a Distraction from Two Critical Safety Issues?”

Comair Layoffs

Comair Expects Furloughs of up to 100 Pilots Starting in September in Wake of Service Cuts (AP, July 9) Comair expects to furlough up to 100 additional pilots between September and the end of the year in the wake Delta‚Äôs decision to make service cuts. The airline placed 295 pilots on furlough in October. AContinue reading “Comair Layoffs”

Expensive Investigation? Better Operating Alternatives?

What are the costs now being incurred by Brazil, France, Air France, Airbus and all other parties to the AF447 disaster? Ever thought of that? My estimation is that more than $500 million will be spent in the next 2-3 years in operations related to this mishap. I wonder what would be the costs forContinue reading “Expensive Investigation? Better Operating Alternatives?”


Well Paul, a worthy initiative for sure. At least you got me curious, particularly about how we are going to get to a useful forecast. And also about how we will get investments in effort (and perhaps even money) going in anticipation of future threats. (This is a bit of an Achilles-heel for initiatives suchContinue reading “Challenges”