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The Top Headlines From AVweb's Expanded,
Illustrated News Coverage At AVweb's
GLOATS ABOUT MEIGS...
Chicago Mayor Richard Daley was undoubtedly crossed off a few more
pilots' Christmas-card lists last Thursday when he marked the
anniversary of his destruction of Meigs Field by gloating over it to
reporters. The emperor-like mayor said his decision to close Meigs (note
the absence of any reference to a collective decision by Chicago's
virtually invisible city council) was "one of the best" he's made as
mayor. And the original motive for closing Meigs (remember the terrorist
threat?) was forgotten in a tirade against general aviation that
suggested that a privileged few were denying the masses access to more
park space. "I live here and people live here and they want that
lakefront," Daley said. "It belongs to them and not to private
businesses and not to small planes." Since the bulldozers left, the
public has so far been all but barred from Northerly Island.
Against those pretty much unbeatable odds, the Friends of
Meigs continues to live up its Churchill-inspired motto (Never,
never, never, never give up) and used the anniversary, under the
umbrella of a new community group, to promote its compromise plan for
the site. The "Bessie Coleman Skypark" would revive the airport but also
set aside part of the land for park use. A beach, nature walks, fishing
stations, and an artificial scuba reef and aviation museum would share
the space with the airport, but the Park District has dismissed the
idea. The Park District "is not in the aviation business," parks
spokesman Julian Green told WBBM Newsradio. The Friends of Meigs has
found support in its fight in a newly formed group called the Committee
for a Better Chicago. More...
FRESH THREAT TO ILLINOIS AVIATION
Illinois aviators have another target for their angst and EAA is hoping
they'll rally to the cause. Pilots and others in aviation are urged to
contact Gov. Rod Blagojevich, Transportation Secretary Timothy Martin, and their
local statesenator and representative with an original letter citing their
concerns about the latest state budget. The budget will cut 35 of the 42
positions in the Aeronautics Department of the state Division of
Aeronautics. The department looks after airport, airman and mechanic
safety programs and EAA says the remaining seven staffers can't hope to
maintain programs such as the Airport Hazard Zoning Program, Airport
Safety Inspection Program and educational and refresher programs
currently sponsored More...
"They'll get the message or they'll lose their money for the program.
We'll put it somewhere where it will get the job done." Some tough words
for the Transportation Security Administration came last Thursday from a
Kentucky senator who sponsored a bill that could see up to two-thirds of
airline pilots automatically qualified to carry guns (in holsters, not
lockboxes) anywhere on an airplane. Sen. Jim Bunning (R-Ky.) said the TSA must get more
guns on airplanes in a big hurry or lose the right to oversee the
Federal Flight Deck Officer (FFDO) program. "We're not interested in any
excuses from here on out," Bunning told a news conference. Bunning,
along with Senators Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) and Conrad Burns (D-Mt.),
sponsored the Cockpit Security Technical Corrections and Improvements
Act, designed to kick-start the process of arming pilots, which has been
criticized as slow, expensive and overly demanding on applicants.
SAYS TRAINING PROGRAM WORKING WELL...
The TSA fired back on Friday, saying the training program is coming
along nicely. TSA spokeswoman Amy von Walter told Cyber News Service the
agency has already doubled the number of FFDO classes and expects that
all pilots who want to be trained, and are qualified, will be issued
their Heckler and Koch semi-automatics by the end of September. Just how
many of the U.S.'s 40,000 airline pilots will meet those criteria, von
Walter didn't mention. The TSA has never discussed how many pilots are
involved but von Walter did say that the TSA has "trained thousands of
pilots who fly tens of thousands of missions." Cargo pilots can now
apply and training for them will start in May, she said.
ATC SITE GOES UNPROTECTED
And while Congress seems be preoccupied with security aboard aircraft,
other critical elements of the air transportation system will have to
get along without it, according to the National Air Traffic Controllers
Association. A new TRACON (Terminal Radar Approach Control) outside
Seattle will open later this month without the metal detectors,
remote-control cameras and armed guards planned for the facility.
Instead, it will be up to staff inside who to let in. All the security
measures have been designed into the building but the FAA says it
doesn't have the money to implement them, according to the Tacoma News
FAN SHOOTS "ANNOYING" CROP-DUSTER
A NASCAR fan who apparently took exception to a crop-duster's drowning
out the televised coverage of a race will spend six months in jail for
trying to shoot down the offending aircraft. Anthony Gene Moore, 36, of
Lenoir County, N.C., was convicted of a single count of firing into an
occupied vehicle after he hit Don Wayne Slaughter's Air Tractor with at
least three shots from a .270 rifle. Two shots went through the
airplane's left wing and another hit the battery, causing it to explode.
Slaughter, 53, heard the shots before he saw a man on the ground firing
a rifle at him. He headed for a nearby airport and called authorities.
CITY ASKS FAA TO DELAY GOLF COURSE ULTIMATUM
The city of Ocean City, Md., is asking the FAA for more time to come up
with a plan to buy, sell, transfer or otherwise rid itself of the
complications a successful golf course has created in relation to the
local airport. As AVweb reported earlier, the FAA wants
$13.3 million from Ocean City to pay for 267 acres of land next to the
airport; the land was purchased with federal grants 20 years ago and was
originally intended to provide a buffer and expansion room for the
airport. But the development of the golf course (with FAA approval), and
the city's reluctance to surrender any of the fairways and greens for
airport use, have prompted the agency to ask for its money back.
CPA MEMBERSHIP IS THE BEST $45 YOU CAN SPEND ON YOUR
With more than 12,000 active members, the Cessna
Pilots Association (CPA) is the world's biggest and best aviation "type
club" 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 popular online
member forums. Join by calling (805) 922-2580 and mentioning this
AVflash, or by clicking here: http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/cpa/avflash.
USER FEES: AOPA, NORTHWEST BUTT HEADS
AOPA President Phil Boyer says his "productive meeting" with Northwest
Airlines CEO Richard Anderson Friday led to the result that the two
"will agree to disagree" on the topic of user fees for air traffic
control services. Anderson claimed in an editorial in Northwest's
Inflight Magazine (reported earlier by AVweb) that airlines are
subsidizing general aviation through the fees they pay for aviation
services. Boyer said Anderson's remarks might have been sparked by the
lawsuit Northwest has launched against the Metropolitan Airport
Commission, which runs Minneapolis-St Paul International (MSP) and six
reliever airports. The commission uses some of the revenue from MSP to
cover costs at the other airports. Northwest believes the money
generated at MSP should stay there. "I think the real issue (for
Northwest) is a pretty localized one," Boyer said. Meanwhile, USA Today
guest opinion writer Robert W. Poole Jr. says it's
time the FAA started charging for air traffic control services so it can
keep up with market demand. More...
CRASH STUDY SPOTLIGHTS PILOT WEAKNESS
Another country, another study, the same results. Australia's Civil
Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) recently completed an analysis of fatal general aviation accidents over a
10-year period and has come up with findings essentially similar to
other studies done on the subject. The vast majority of fatal accidents
are caused by pilots, not hardware, and 78 percent can be blamed on poor
flight planning, aircraft handling and fuel management, in that order.
The eternal question remains what to do about it and CASA has come up
with a predictable, although not necessarily productive, solution.
"Improved pilot training can be a preventative weapon against mistakes
and crashes and CASA will support the aviation industry in striving for
the best possible standards in Australia," said CASA CEO Bruce Byron
(before placing the study carefully on the shelf). More...
FLIGHTMAX EX500 WITH INTEGRATED DATALINK-TRAINING SOFTWARE
Avidyne's FlightMax EX500 provides the best
value MFD/Datalink solution available for G.A. And it's the easiest to
use. To prove it, Avidyne has put together a new FlightMax EX500 trainer
which allows you to "fly" user-defined flight plans and retrieve
"datalinked" graphical weather and TFRs all along the route and
randomly access virtually all pages and functions of the EX500, just as
you would on the real product. See the FlightMax EX550 at Sun 'n
Fun Booth #D-043-044, or download your no-cost EX500 Training
Software at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/avidyne/avflash.
UPDATE: THINGS THE FAA WON'T FINE YOU FOR
The FAA says John Salamone has paid a high enough price for his alleged
aerial antics over Philadelphia International Airport and the agency
won't be levying any fines against him. Salamone is alleged to have
thrown the airspace over northern Pennsylvania and southern New Jersey
into chaos for four hours on the night of Jan. 15 by cutting through
controlled airspace, coming within 900 feet of a loaded Boeing 747,
buzzing the ground and circling near a nuclear plant (though in fairness
there is one just off the runway at Pennsylvania's Limerick airport and
some reports indicate he missed his first approach there). The FAA took
away his commercial pilot certificate a week later and considers the
matter closed. More...
And then there were six ... or is it five? Raytheon's effort to
decommission the fleet of Beech 2000 Starships has met with some
resistance by pilots who just don't want to give up the composite,
canarded, tailless twin turboprop that the company once hoped would
revolutionize the business-aircraft market. Last year it decided support
for the fleet of 50 Starships was too costly and offered owners a King
Air in exchange. Raytheon is now the registered owner of 41 of those
aircraft but spokesman Tim Travis said his understanding is that there
are only six private owners who intend to keep flying their Starships
and one of them might be waffling. One proud owner unlikely to willingly
give up his is Robert Scherer, who, when he's not flying for
business or pleasure, uses the Starship as a chase plane for Scaled
Composites' entry in the X PRIZE competition. More...
Sonic booms from Guard exercise startled southern Oregon residents last
Branson takes on Trump in reality-show ratings challenge...
King Schools and EAA are collaborating on Sport Pilot training.
ARTICLES AND FEATURES ON AVWEB
As the Beacon Turns #75: Mistakes Are Good!
Most pilots hate to make mistakes. Aside from the obvious dangers of
getting hurt or killed, the damage to one's pride prevents most pilots
from stopping to contemplate the advantages of making (safe) mistakes.
AVweb's Michael Maya Charles is back in the simulator and (mostly)
enjoying learning from his mistakes. More...
AVEMCO EXPANDS AVIATOR SERIES OF NON-OWNED INSURANCE
AVEMCO has added the Aviator Silver package to their
Non-Owned (Renters) insurance package offerings. For as low as $215
annually, pilots can have the liability and aircraft damage liability
they need when flying a borrowed or rented aircraft. AVEMCO also has
options for pilots to customize liability and aircraft damage liability
insurance to meet personal needs. Pilots who rent or borrow aircraft are
often unaware they may not have insurance protection while flying. These
AVEMCO non-owned insurance packages can be found immediately online,
24/7! Come by Sun 'n Fun booth #C55-56, call (888) 241-7891 and
mention this AVflash, or go online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/avemco/avflash.
HAVE YOU SIGNED UP yet for AVwebs 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. Watch for
a Business AVflash regular feature, TSA WATCH: GA IN THE
"SPOTLIGHT". Sign up today at http://www.avweb.com/profile/
|LAZY BUZZARD GOES RACING!!!!|
Lazy Buzzard has
decided to send his pilot racing. Come late summer, the Lazy Buzzard
Pitts Special will be tearing around the pylons at the Reno Air Races.
Check out the site to see the Lazy Buzzard airplane and other great
stuff!! Watch for Lazy Buzzard at air shows throughout the year. Be a
part of it all and support Lazy Buzzard in his quest for Life, Liberty,
and the pursuit of Happiness and Speed. Online at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/lazybuzzard/avflash.
FEEDBACK ON AVWEB'S NEWS COVERAGE AND FEATURE ARTICLES:
mail this week about Sport Pilot delays, avian warning systems, airshows
and more. More...
WINGX VERSION 1.4 FOR THE POCKET PC RELEASED!
1.4 builds upon an already solid software solution for the Pocket PC by
offering over 240 predefined aircraft models; graphical ramp,
taxi/runup, and flight fuel weight-and-balance calculations;
user-defined routes; and more. For example: WingX now has AC61-65D
endorsements (great for CFIs), NWS Contractions, and local toll-free FSS
numbers that's in addition to FARs 1, 43, 61, 91, 119, 141, 830,
and the Pilot/Controller Glossary. WingX has a powerful E6B, now with
wind chill calculations. WingX will remember expiration dates, too. For
a limited time, WingX is just $39.99, 30% below the normal price. Take a
look at screen shots and download the demo at http://www.avweb.com/sponsors/hiltonsoftware/avflash.
Overheard in the pilot's lounge, a student pilot receives a briefing
over a speakerphone...
Pilot: I've never flown into
there before. Do you have anything you can tell me aside from the
Briefer: The windsock is inoperable.
Briefer: Apparently their wind is out of
Sponsor News and Special Offers
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YOU TOO CAN BE A WINNER WITH SCHEYDEN, AVIATION'S FINEST
"I was surprised that I won, and even more surprised
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E-OX: A HIGH-QUALITY PORTABLE OXYGEN NEED NOT COST AN ARM
AND A LEG
Discovered that you don't need to spend $600 or
more to get a high-quality portable oxygen system? With prices starting
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light, compact, and slips easily into your flight bag or briefcase.
Aeromedix offers one- and two-place systems with cylinder sizes from 36
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ORDER A CHASE-DURER CHRONOGRAPH WATCH & RECEIVE DISCOUNT
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FLYING MAGAZINE'S APRIL COVER WILL MAKE YOU
Bombardier's new super-midsized business jet, the
Challenger 300, graces the April cover of Flying magazine.
Details inside, coupled with: A report on Bendix/King Datalink Weather &
the WSI InFlight System; The EC135, Melding Form and Function; Airplane
Tax Deductions; and all the features you've come to expect and respect.
Stop by Sun 'n Fun Booth #s E-060-062 and AC-005 for your
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MOM SOMETHING TO TICKLE HER FUNNY BONE & SHOW HER LOVE OF
For Mother's Day, the Carprop is perfect! The Carprop
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TRAINING STARTS HERE!
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We Welcome Your Feedback!
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