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Volume 10, Number 05a

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The Top Headlines From AVweb's Expanded, Illustrated News Coverage At AVweb's NewsWire.

FREEDOM'S SLOW RETURN TO DC...
Pilots in the beleaguered Washington, D.C., area last week won a bit of a victory from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the FAA, thanks to efforts by GA advocacy groups, when easier ingress and egress procedures were decreed for several small airports near the Washington Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) edges. The new procedures allow aircraft operating into and out of Bay Bridge Airport (W29) and Kentmorr Airport (3W3) to enter the ADIZ and fly directly to or from the airport through a special corridor without filing a flight plan or contacting air traffic control. Instead of obtaining a discrete transponder code from ATC, specific codes have been assigned for flights into or out of each airport. More...

...AFTER AN ABORTED TRIAL LAST YEAR
The procedures had been the subject of a 60-day operational test last year, but the test was suspended -- at around 45 days -- when the "orange" terrorist alert kicked in last December. The procedures now will be permanent, or as permanent as anything associated with the Washington ADIZ. The changes are subject to review and could be rescinded if there are too many violations, AOPA said. As for the permanence of the ADIZ itself, that remains an open question. "AOPA believes the ADIZ has outlived its usefulness and hopes it will be rescinded," AOPA prez Phil Boyer said in a news release Friday. "But until that happens, the new procedures should make operations at the edges of the ADIZ a little less complicated." More...

TRADE-A-PLANE IS THE WORLD'S LARGEST AVIATION RESOURCE
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GPS IS "NEW" NO MORE...
The FAA, in an Advisory Circular published several weeks ago, has eliminated the "New Technology" label from GPS navigation systems, which means repair stations now can install the systems using simpler procedures. The Aircraft Electronics Association (AEA) said in a news release it is "extremely pleased" with the change, which it has wanted for years. "AEA commends the [FAA] for modernizing their installation criteria for one of the most common system installations of light general aviation aircraft," the association said. Under the previous Advisory Circular, installation of GPS equipment required the use of approved data (under an STC or major alteration) because GPS was a "new and unique" technology. More...

...SIMPLIFYING INSTALLATION
However, the FAA recognizes that GPS technology is now common and considerable experience has been obtained in the installation of GPS. The AEA cautioned that the revision does NOT mean that all GPS/WAAS installations can be treated as "minor alterations," but rather allows GPS/WAAS equipment to be installed using the same criteria that a repair station would use for installing traditional navigation equipment. For example, under the new guidelines, installation of GNSS (GPS/WAAS) navigation equipment that only interfaces with an antenna, power, ground, an external HSI/CDI with a single source selector switch, and a left/right (deviation-based) autopilot would typically be considered a minor alteration. More...

AEROSANCE PowerLink© FADEC APPLICATIONS GROW
With STCs for a number of Beech Bonanza and Baron models now in hand, Aerosance (another Teledyne Technologies company) is highlighting the latest developments with their revolutionary PowerLink© FADEC digital engine control system. For more information on how to bring your aircraft into the FADEC generation, go online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/tcm/fadec.

FAA REVIEWING CHICAGO TRACON
An FAA team is working in the Chicago TRACON (terminal radar approach control) facility in Elgin, Ill., this week to investigate a sharp increase in errors and a record increase in delays. Twenty-four errors involving violations of minimum spacing between airplanes occurred last year at the facility, up from four errors in 2002, according to the Chicago Tribune. The National Air Traffic Controllers Association says the TRACON is understaffed. "It took the FAA over a year to realize the magnitude of the problem," NATCA President John Carr said in a news release Thursday. The union says the TRACON has only 75 full-performance-level controllers and 24 trainees, not enough to manage Chicago's increasingly congested airways. More...

THUNDERBIRDS CRASH REPORT AND VIDEO
Pilot error caused a U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds F-16 to crash at an air show on Sept. 14 at Mountain Home Air Force Base, Idaho, the Air Force said on Wednesday. (See AVweb's NewsWire for in-cockpit video of the crash.) The pilot incorrectly climbed to 1,670 feet AGL instead of 2,500 feet before initiating the pull-down to the Split-S maneuver, according to the Air Force news release. The pilot, Chris Stricklin, 31, apparently flew by mistake to the MSL altitude used when practicing the maneuver at his home base, Nellis AFB in Nevada, which is 1,000 feet lower than the Idaho field elevation. The pilot ejected just eight-tenths of a second before impact, after reportedly making an effort to steer the aircraft away from the crowd of about 85,000 ... and now works at the Pentagon, in Washington, D.C. More...

MEMBERSHIP IS THE BEST $45 YOU CAN SPEND ON YOUR CESSNA!
With more than 12,000 active members, the Cessna Pilots Association (CPA) is the world's biggest and best "aviation-type club." At just $45/year, CPA membership is the world's greatest bargain for Cessna pilots and owners. Members receive a monthly magazine; a weekly e-mail newsletter; technical support by a full-time staff of A&Ps with tremendous expertise in all Cessna models; model-specific buyer's guides and systems courses; a group aircraft insurance program; and access to CPA's giant online knowledge bank and hugely popular online member forums. To join this remarkable organization, phone (805) 922-2580 or click http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/cpa.

FAA YANKS PILOT'S CERTIFICATE AFTER ERRATIC FLIGHT
The TSA may pull your certificate without reason and at a moment's notice; it took the FAA a bit longer. According to FAA documents, Pennsylvania pilot John V. Salamone on Jan. 15 allegedly made a reckless four-hour flight in his Piper Cherokee while drunk. Last week the FAA took their own action and revoked Salamone's certificate. John V. Salamone endangered the lives of others, entered controlled airspace without contacting ATC, and forced air traffic controllers to divert numerous aircraft, including a half-dozen airliners, to avoid the Cherokee, the FAA said. Salamone can appeal the action, but cannot keep his certificate during the appeal. Salamone, 44, is president of a concrete company. The FAA said he had no prior incidents or enforcement actions, according to CNN. More...

COMAIR AND SEE WHAT A BULB COST
The light bulb only cost 77 cents, but without it, a "No Smoking, Fasten Seat Belt" sign on a Comair flight was dark, and it stayed out for four flights. What ensued, according to a report in Friday's USA Today, was a four-year investigation, an inch-thick report, and a proposed $44,000 fine. (It's possible the proposed fine would not recover the dollars spent through four years of investigation.) "It's not simply the fact the light was out, but the follow-up actions required were not taken," FAA spokeswoman Kathleen Bergen told reporters. Nonetheless, the case was settled after Comair replaced the bulb and agreed to pay the fine ... after it was reduced to $3,000. More...

JANUARY SPECIALS FROM MARV GOLDEN — YOUR ONE-STOP PILOT SHOP!
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SPORT PILOT BUZZ AND SUN 'N FUN
While much of the U.S. is griping and groaning its way through a record-setting cold blustery winter, signs of spring are on the horizon. The folks at EAA say they are working away "like elves helping Santa" in anticipation of the sometime-this-year enactment of the FAA's new Sport Pilot/Light Sport Aircraft rules. On Thursday, the elves said they have posted a list of frequently asked questions about certification and registration of various new light-sport aircraft. Meanwhile, Sun 'n Fun, EAA's annual fly-in that kicks off the summer season in Lakeland, Fla., is set for April 13 to 19, and it's not too soon to start your flight planning -- the NOTAMs are already online. More...

NASA'S WORK TOWARD IN-COCKPIT WEATHER (SORT OF)
Among the many tasks that GA aircraft reliably take on, one that occurs quietly behind the scenes is their work as scientific research platforms. This winter, a high-flying ER-2 aircraft, which is a civilian variant of Lockheed's U-2, and a Cessna Citation II have been working out of Bangor, Maine, to help NASA scientists learn about the severe Atlantic coast winter storms called Nor'easters. The researchers hope to learn how to better predict the storms' behavior, to help improve aviation weather forecasts and ultimately save lives. The Citation is also carrying an experimental instrument that measures temperature, icing and wind speed, which could help to increase the weather information available to GA pilots in the cockpit. More...

LIMA LIMA FLIGHT TEAM DEPENDS ON OREGON AERO FOR PAIN-FREE FLYING
It was often painful for the world-renowned Lima Lima Flight Team to fly long distances for a performance. But the team now uses Oregon Aero™ Complete Aviation Helmet Upgrades, Custom and Portable Seat Cushions, and Oregon Aero™ Shock-Absorbing Insole Inserts. Say members of the team: "We fly with Oregon Aero from head-to-toe, and we are not only pain-free, but flying is also incredibly quieter!" Check out all of Oregon Aero's products online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/oregon.

911 CALL FAILS, SUGGESTS BROADER FAILINGS
In Florida, two 911 calls from the witness of a plane crash near the Venice airport somehow failed to initiate a search, and the wreck was not found by rescue/recovery crews till 19 hours later. Cindy Toepfer first called 911 immediately after the crash and "was first referred to an 800 number for the Domestic Air Interdiction Coordination Center in Riverside, Calif.," according to the Herald Tribune. When her call to California for the crash she witnessed in Florida failed, Toepfer called 911 again, motivating the dispatcher to call Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport; no inquiries were made in the Venice area. FAA spokesman Chris White told the Tribune, "Local jurisdictions make up their own requirements" on notifying the FAA. Two pilots died in the Cessna 150. More...

ON THE FLY...
A Bonanza crashed Thursday evening into a Farmington, N.M., police station...
In Bangkok Saturday, 672 skydivers set a world record for a mass jump...
Jamail Larkins launched "barnstorming" tour Saturday from Lakeland...
WWII aerial photos online archive stalled due to overwhelming demand...
FAA public meeting March 3-4 at Dulles to discuss Cessna wing spars...
Gus McLeod is in Florida on his second attempt to cross both poles...
President Bush on Friday signed appropriations bill for FAA funding. More...

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NEW ARTICLES AND FEATURES ON AVWEB
The Pilot's Lounge #70: Do Humans Create Those Written Tests?
Every pilot has taken them -- and most have noticed strange or at least confusing questions on those FAA Knowledge Tests. Sometimes it seems like nobody official has even looked at those questions in decades to decide if the questions are relevant. AVweb's Rick Durden met the folks who actually are updating those old tests. More...

READER FEEDBACK ON AVWEB'S NEWS COVERAGE AND FEATURE ARTICLES
Reader mail this week about FSS privatization, the state of GA, some potential problems with Sport Pilot and more. More...

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BUSINESS AVFLASH
HAVE YOU SIGNED UP yet for AVweb’s NO-COST twice monthly Business AVflash? Reporting on breaking news, Business AVflash also focuses on the companies, the products and the industry leaders that make headlines in the Business of Aviation. Business AVflash is a must read! Sign up today at http://www.avweb.com/profile/

More...

MIKE BUSCH WANTS YOU TO GET SAVVY ABOUT MAINTENANCE!
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SHORT FINAL...
Tower: Skyhawk xxx follow Baron on four mile final for 17L.

Skyhawk: Baron in sight.

a little later...

Tower: Skyhawk you're 10 knots faster than the Baron. Slow down.

Skyhawk: Yeeha!!! (Followed by hysterical laughter.)

Tower: Right. I guess that's not something you hear every day. More...

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AVflash is a twice-weekly summary of the latest aviation news, articles, products, features and events featured on AVweb, the Internet's Aviation Magazine and News Service. http://www.avweb.com

Letters to the editor intended for publication in AVmail should be sent to mailto:editor@avweb.com.com. Have a comment or question? Send it to mailto:newsteam@avweb.com.

Today's issue written by News Writer Mary Grady:
http://www.avweb.com/contact/authors.html#mgrady
AVweb's editorial team: http://avweb.com/contact/authors.html.

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