The Commercial Airplane or Helicopter Pilot performs a variety of flying jobs. If piloting a fixed-wing plane, the pilot may engage in such flying jobs as aerial photography, aerial advertising, sightseeing, geological survey, fish and game census, highway patrol, or checking federal airways and navigational aids. Helicopter pilots may fly on a regular schedule carrying workers and supplies to offshore oil rigs, or fly accident victims to a hospital heliport, lift heavy loads to tops of buildings or to remote mountain sites, rescue people stranded by floods, carry smoke jumpers to fight forest fires, or deliver Santa Claus to shopping center parking lots. 

Flights are usually of short duration. The pilot usually works for an operator whose services are chartered. Helicopter pilots are often required to do precision flying hovering over a particular spot or landing on small cleared areas.  As the use of general aviation aircraft and helicopters is so varied and widespread in the U.S., pilots are employed just about everywhere there are airports or heliports.These pilots can aspire to advanced status as they build up hours of flying experience and skills. If they work for an operator who owns a fleet of aircraft or helicopters, they may advance to the job of Chief Pilot, or they may build up enough business to employ other pilots and direct their operations. At best it is mixed for the short term considering the recent recession, rising fuel prices and decrease in aircraft production. Studies do indicate that for the long term (1985-1990's) the need for pilots will grow as more pilots retire and the demand for aviation grows.

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