NTSB Issues Five More General Aviation Safety Alerts

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The NTSB has issued its five newest Safety Alerts aimed to help pilots develop mitigating strategies to prevent accidents. These follow five issued in March that focused on the most frequent type of general aviation accidents. “Knowing these accidents can be prevented is why ‘General Aviation Safety’ is on our Most Wanted List of transportation safety improvements,” said NTSB Chair Deborah Hersman. “At a time when many people are putting together their list of resolutions for the coming year, these five Safety Alerts remind pilots, mechanics and passengers of the basic safety precautions to add to their checklists to ensure a safe flight for all on board.” A Safety Alert is a brief information sheet that pinpoints a particular safety hazard and offers practical remedies to address the issue.

The five safety alerts issued were:

  1. Check Your Restraints (restraints degrade with age and can fail—installing shoulder harnesses can prevent occupants from impacting the interior during a crash);
  2. Engine Power Loss Due to Carburetor Icing (pilots need to learn to detect and deal with carburetor icing appropriately);
  3. “Armed” for Safety: Emergency Locator Transmitters (ELTs that are turned off or secured to structure don’t function and have cost lives due to delays in finding downed airplanes);
  4. All Secure, All Clear (forgotten and unsecured items have jammed control system components and caused crashes);
  5. Proper Use of Fiber Self-Locking Nuts (trying to save money by reusing a fiber self-locking nut has caused degraded insets to fail to hold the nut on the bolt-leading to a crash, notably the P-51 that went into the stands at the Reno Air Races, killing spectators and the pilot).