Powered Parachute Flying Handbook

Chapter 1 - Introduction to the Powered Parachute

PAeronautical Decision Making (ADM)

Your current attitude or mindset is something you, as PIC, must constantly be alert to in order to maintain your safety and that of the aircraft, your passenger and the general public on the ground. To accomplish sound aeronautical decision making (ADM), you must first be aware of your limitations and well-being (physical and psychological health), even before beginning the first preflight routine. While technology is constantly improving equipment and strengthening materials, safe flight comes down to the decisions made by the human pilot prior to and during flight.

The well-being of the pilot is the starting point for the decision making processes that will occur while in control of the aircraft. Just as physical fatigue and illness will directly affect your judgment, so too will your attitude management, stress management, risk management, personality tendencies, and situational awareness. Hence, it is the awareness of your human factors and the knowledge of the related corrective action that will not only improve the safety of operating a powered parachute, but will also enhance the joy of flying. See Chapter 16 of the Pilot’s Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge (FAA-H-8083-25) to learn the decision-making process, risk management techniques, and hazardous attitude antidotes you should use in all your flight operations.

The phrase “pilot error” points to the human factors which have caused an incident or accident, including the pilot’s failure to take appropriate action. TypicalTypically, it is not a single decision or indecision that leads to an accident, but most likely it is a chain of errorrelated factors. This inadequate action and poor judgment path is referred to as the human “error chain.” You only need to be aware of a situation and break one link in this error chain to improve the outcome of a sequence of events and return to safe and secure flight.

A good instructor will immediately begin teaching ADM when the student has the ability to confidently control the powered parachute during the most basic maneuvers. During a proficiency or practical test, the instructor or examiner will be evaluating the applicant’s ability to use satisfactory ADM practices as the pilot determines risks and coordinates safe procedures.

Resource Management

Pilots must make effective use of single-pilot resource management (SRM): human resources (pilot, passenger, maintenance personnel, and the weather briefer, as applicable), hardware (equipment), and information. It is similar to crew resource management (CRM) procedures that are being emphasized in multi-crewmember operations except only one crewmember (the pilot) is involved. Resource management is one way of optimizing the risk elements (the pilot, the aircraft, the environment, and the type of flight operation). This ability to manage the resources available to you is as critical to the successful outcome of the flight as your skills and procedures as a pilot.

Light-sport aircraft are flown by a single pilot. Nonetheless, there are numerous resources available to that pilot. For instance, even though the passenger is not a pilot, he or she can be asked to assist with scanning the skies and a possible landing location during an emergency. Your knowledge, skills, and consistent use of a checklist are also valuable resources. External resources for the powered parachute pilot include those that can assist with Notices to Airmen (NOTAMs) and weather information. These resources can include Automated Weather Observing System (AWOS), Automated Surface Observing System (ASOS), Hazardous Inflight Weather Advisory Service (HIWAS), and Flight Service Stations (FSS) 800-WX-BRIEF.

 ŠAvStop Online Magazine                                                                                                                                                       Contact Us              Return To Books

AvStop Aviation News and Resource Online Magazine

Grab this Headline Animator