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Volume 17, Number 7a
February 14, 2011
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AVflash! FAA Funding on the Chopping Block?back to top 
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The House of Representatives and the Senate are both considering legislation that would roll back funding of the FAA to 2008 levels, but still provide funding toward NextGen, according to a Reuters report, Friday. Chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, Rep. John Mica, said in a statement that the proposal "increases the efficiency and effectiveness of our aviation programs." The plan reportedly seeks to cut $4 billion out of the FAA's funding through cost savings found in programs that the FAA will be asked to identify and that do not impact safety. FAA administrator Randy Babbitt said the cuts would further slow the deployment of NextGen. And, as worded, the House version could have a large impact on small airports. More...

Given the advance press on President Obama's budget and the bizarre legislative history of the FAA's current reauthorization process, it's far too soon to predict how it will all turn out but some groups see hope their specific issues will be addressed by the final bill. Among them is the small but organized effort to protect through-the-fence agreements, which allow access to airports by those who have hangar homes on adjacent privately-owned property. Dr. Brent Blue, organizer of said identical language in both the House and Senate versions of the bill would protect existing agreements and allow future deals between airports and adjacent residential property owners. More...

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So What Do You Think of the Flight Design C4?back to top 

Manufacturer of the successful CT series of Light Sport aircraft, Flight Design has confirmed its upcoming C4 four-seat aircraft but says the final design will be decided with input from dealers, customers and ... you. The company will be rolling out a full-size proof-of-concept model at Aero 2011, which will be held this year April 13-16, in Germany. Attendees will be able to contribute their thoughts at the event. For the rest of the world, Flight Design is creating an online survey where it will accept opinions regarding design features of C4. The survey is linked < a href="" target="_blank">here, but will not be online until March (save the page). The company's engineers will work with the information and hope to freeze the design by Sun 'n Fun 2012. The company plans to certify the C4 and is also working on full type certificates for its CTLS and MC. Meanwhile, Flight Design's has other news for amphib fans. More...

Pilots Require a Different Approach
When It Comes to Buying Life Insurance

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Call PIC at (800) 380-8376 or visit
FlightPrep Patent: The Latest Twists and Turnsback to top 

The legal dispute between FlightPrep and RunwayFinder over the latter's alleged patent infringement continues to move forward but there have been a couple of twists and turns. According to the most recent post to RunwayFinder's Web site, owner Dave Parsons has filed a dismissal notice in the Oregon court where the suit was launched alleging the suit should have been filed in Washington, where FlightPrep is based. FlightPrep can fight the dismissal notice and even if it is upheld the suit can simply be relaunched in Washington. No timeline was given for that bit of legal wrangling but the lawsuit itself is considered a short-term issue. RunwayFinder has also started work on an attempt to dismantle, or significantly restrict the patent itself. More...

Thanks for JA Air Center || Vote for Us in 
the AIN FBO Survey
Thanks from Chicago's Best Arrival Option, JA Air Center!
Thanks to all the Flight Crews who made us their first choice for Chicagoland arrivals in 2010! Whether it's the best location in Chicago with direct tollway access, our giant arrival canopy, or our world-class facilities that brought you here, we know it is our warm, friendly service that keeps you coming back! We would greatly appreciate your vote in the AIN FBO survey! Vote now.
A White Knuckle Landing You Can Learn Fromback to top 

On Sept. 28, 2010, a Cessna 172RG was flying at 10:38 a.m. local time over Oklahoma when the situation became life-threatening. On board were a CFI candidate and his instructor. They were about four miles out from Richard Lloyd Jones Airport, near Tulsa, and had just selected "gear down" when fire broke out behind the instrument panel. Flames quickly spread to the rug and seats and filled the cockpit with thick black smoke. Getting down safely and immediately became the instant responsibility of 28-year-old instructor Jade Schiewe, and what happened next was the result of skill, instinct and knowledge. AVweb's Glenn Pew spoke with Schiewe about the experience that left Schiewe with second and third degree burns and a slipped disc in his back. That conversation is this week's podcast. Click through to listen and to read the NTSB's factual report, which may be relevant to you.

Related Content:


Aviation Law After September 11 - 
Passengers Rights and Aviation National Security || March 22, 2011 || 
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The Legal Aviation Workshop (LAW) "Aviation Law After September 11: Passengers Rights and Aviation National Security" will be held on March 22, 2011 in Miami, FL. This event will cover the following themes: Historical Background; Consumer Protection and Aviation Security; International Liability Treaties; and Hijackings, Terrorism and Civil Rights. The workshop Leader is Timothy Ravich of Ravich Law Firm, who is recognized as a "Florida Bar Board Certified Aviation Lawyer." Click here to learn more and register.
The Theory and Practice of Lawback to top 

A letter from the FAA (PDF) to Sen. James Inhofe says he has completed "remedial training" and the FAA has decided not to pursue legal enforcement action as the result of his landing on an occupied closed runway, before departing from a taxiway, last October. The FAA initiated an investigation after the 75-year-old senator landed his Cessna 340, with three others aboard, at Port Isabel-Cameron Country, Texas, on Oct. 21, 2010. The senator's then-chosen runway was marked with large Xs, and littered with a large red truck, other vehicles, and construction workers. No one was injured as a result of the incident. Inhofe has said he was offered the choice of possible legal action, or the training program, and took the second option. His training included four hours of ground instruction and three hours of flight instruction. It was provided by an instructor who had previously been a student of the senator, according to FAA spokesperson Sarah Johnson said the agency treated the senator as it would any other pilot. Inhofe has also had things to say. More...

There's an undeniably California flair to a strange dispute that has pitted (sorry) an olive farmer against hot air balloonists in the state's Coachella Valley, near Palm Springs. And now the local polo club is involved. The Eldorado Polo Club is hosting a fundraiser on Feb. 27 to help pay the incidental expenses of 15 balloonists and one pest control applicator facing lawsuits from JCM Farming. A local law firm has already volunteered to represent the pilots, so the proceeds from the brunch, raffles, barbecue and, of course, tethered balloon rides will go to cover other unspecified expenses related to the litigation, according to The Desert Sun. More...

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Opinion & Commentaryback to top 

Did the FAA let Sen. Jim Inhofe get away with a slap on the wrist following his landing on a closed runway? Not exactly, says Paul Bertorelli on the AVweb Insider blog — but it could have been more aggressive. Read more and join the conversation. More...

The FAA has formed a new joint committee to "investigate, prioritize and summarize" issues related to finding an unleaded replacement for 100LL. But what have we been doing for the past 20 years if not re-stating, reframing and investigating the problem? There is only way this new committee can make any progress, says Paul Bertorelli in the latest installment of our AVweb Insider blog. But it'll take someone — not someones — with a lot of smarts, insider knowledge and leadership skill who doesn't work for the FAA. We'll see if it's possible. Read more and join the conversation. More...

AVbuys || AVweb Stories About Great 
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Letter of the Weekback to top 


Letter of the Week: GPS Threat Worth Considering

In my opinion (which I believe to be fairly accurate on this subject given my 40+ years experience in electronics), the GPS interference threat posed by LightSquared's proposed network is a serious disaster in the making. Their position that a "properly filtered" GPS receiver won't suffer significant interference is technically true but ludicrous in reality. It's true that the technology exists to produce a filter that greatly attenuates signals in the frequency range they are intending to use while only marginally affecting GPS signals, but in the real world there are many big problems with that "solution."


Lance Fisher

Click through to read the rest of this letter — and others from our mailbag.


Have you added more than oil to your engine? If you've tried oil additives like CamGuard or AVblend, Aviation Consumer wants to know how it worked out. Whether your experience was good, bad or of no consequence whatsoever, they want to know. Please take a moment to fill out their survey to help the research effort for an upcoming, in-depth review. Click here to take the survey. More...

Our best stories start with you. If you've heard something 255,000 pilots might want to know about, tell us. Submit news tips via email to What have you heard? More...

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AVweb Audio — Are You Listening?back to top 

It's not much fun at times, but most believe their job is important and makes a difference. AVweb's Russ Niles spoke with former screener and union president Ron Moore about why we still need to take our shoes off at the airport and the importance of being nice.

This podcast is brought to you by Bose Corporation. More...

Traditional Tactics Need a Fresh Approach
Doing the same thing and expecting different results is the definition of insanity. Isn't it time to initiate a digital marketing program with AVweb that will deliver traffic and orders directly to your web site? Discover several new and highly successful marketing options to use in lieu of static print or banner campaigns. Click now for details.
Your Favorite FBOsback to top 


AVweb's "FBO of the Week" ribbon goes to Island City Flying Service at Key West International Airport (EYW) in Key West, Florida.

AVweb reader Neal Carbaugh told us how ICFS brought GA love to the airport last week:

EYW hosted their first ever Southernmost Open House & Aviation Review (SOAR) on February 5. This FBO donated fuel for the last remaining B-25Hs still flying in the world today and an original Eastern Airlines DC-7, neither of which would have been able to be there without it and both of which were the stars of the show. Additionally, they gave up one of their four rows for static display aircraft and waived their normal overnight fee. Most of all, their ramp controller, the girls behind the counter, and their maintenance guys handled the most number of aircraft ever in a single day and did so in superb fashion with favorable comments from many! SOAR was a big success, but [it] would not have been possible without Island City Flying Service!

Keep those nominations coming. For complete contest rules, click here.

AVweb is actively seeking out the best FBOs in the country and another one, submitted by you, will be spotlighted here next Monday!


AVweb Media: Look, Listen, Laugh and Learnback to top 

Probably not, but you may still want to consider a cockpit carbon monoxide detector. In this video, AVweb and Aviation Consumer take a look at these relatively inexpensive safety gadgets. They have steadily improved in recent years, and there are more choices than ever. More...

Friday, Feb. 4, 2011, the tailless, strike-fighter-sized unmanned system, the X-47B, under development by Northrop Grumman, completed its first flight at Edwards Air Force Base (AFB), California. The flying wing took off at 2:09 p.m. PST and flew for 29 minutes. The UAV climbed to an altitude of 5,000 feet, flew several racetrack-type patterns, and landed safely at 2:38 p.m. Northrop says the flight provided test data to verify and validate system software for guidance and navigation and the aerodynamic control of the tailless design. The aircraft will remain at Edwards AFB for flight envelope expansion before moving its test program to Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md., later in 2011. There, the system will undergo tests to validate its readiness to begin testing in the maritime and carrier environment. The X-47 is being prepared for carrier trials in 2013. More...

The Lighter Side of Flightback to top 


Mobile (AL) Approach:
"Aircraft calling Mobile, say again."

Delta Flight:
"Delta 1234, out of 14 for ten."

"... That's a real bad radio; sounds like an old T-37 in my ear."

"Roger that."

[brief pause]

"How's this one?"

"Better. Still a lot of whining in the background."

"That's just the flight attendants."

Dan Luke
via e-mail


Heard anything funny, unusual, or downright shocking on the radio lately? If you've been flying any length of time, you're sure to have eavesdropped on a few memorable exchanges. The ones that gave you a chuckle may do the same for your fellow AVweb readers. Share your radio funny with us, and, if we use it in a future "Short Final," we'll send you a sharp-looking AVweb hat to sport around your local airport. No joke. Click here to submit your original, true, and previously unpublished story. More...

Names Behind the Newsback to top 


AVwebFlash is a weekly summary of the latest news, articles, products, features, and events featured on AVweb, the internet's aviation magazine and news service.

The AVwebFlash team is:

Timothy Cole

Editorial Director, Aviation Publications
Paul Bertorelli

Russ Niles

Contributing Editors
Mary Grady
Glenn Pew

Features Editor
Kevin Lane-Cummings

Scott Simmons

Jeff van West
Mariano Rosales

Click here to send a letter to the editor. (Please let us know if your letter is not intended for publication.)

Comments or questions about the news should be sent here.

Have a product or service to advertise on AVweb? A question on marketing? Send it to AVweb's sales team.

If you're having trouble reading this newsletter in its HTML-rich format (or if you'd prefer a lighter, simpler format for your PDA or handheld device), there's also a text-only version of AVwebFlash. For complete instructions on making the switch, click here.

Aviate. Navigate. Communicate.