AVmail: July 16, 2012

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Each week, we run a sampling of the letters received to our editorial inbox here in AVmail. One letter that's particularly relevant, informative, or otherwise compelling will headline this section as our "Letter of the Week," and we'll send the author an official AVweb baseball cap as a "thank you" for interacting with us (and the rest of our readership). Send us your comments and questions using this form. Please include your mailing address in your e-mail (just in case your letter is our "Letter of the Week"); by the same token, please let us know if your message is not intended for publication.
AVweb Replies:

We were surprised by the volume and frankness of letters from readers who admitted to fibbing during their flight medicals in response to our "Question of the Week." Only a few asked for anonymity, but we'll keep all of their names out of it.

Russ Niles
Editor-in-Chief

Letter of the Week: Pants on Fire

When non-disqualifying conditions requiring additional documentation reached the point that I found myself making six medical clinic visits to get all the reports that I needed, I decided not to play this game anymore. I looked at the stack of paperwork I had accumulated and knew two things: If I submitted it, I would get a medical certificate after referral to the FAA, and I am not willing to face this hassle and invasion of privacy every two years to get my government's permission to pursue a hobby.

So I canceled the physical and, when LSA aircraft are available to rent in my area, will take up flying again. The path of lying to my doctors would eventually lead to poor medical care. Now I don't have to worry about admitting that I snore or whatever and am perfectly free to accept or reject proposed work-ups based on my personal judgment after discussions with my doctor rather than the doctors in Oklahoma City.

Name withheld

I have a condition and take medication that would be disqualifying. The condition does not affect my flying ability. I have done flights with another pilot to prove this to myself.

The medication is also disqualifying. I, however, waited several months to verify that the medication did not have any adverse effect on my physical and mental ability to fly.

If the FAA would have a logical approach and allow my testing to verify that my condition was O.K., to fly I would report it. The FAA, however, has only a YES or NO attitude. Logic seems to be disallowed.

Name withheld

Never have. Wish I had from the get-go. Seventeen years of completely unnecessary Special Issuance, because OK city refuses to accept the word of my doctors. Continuously demanding unnecessary tests. I am finally beaten down and will go sport pilot or quit flying.

Name withheld

Fibbed on my medical unintentionally years ago. I had a kidney stone removed and didn't realize it was a reportable event on the application until several years later.

Name withheld

I wish I had lied. I haven't.

Name withheld

I was honest, but I wish now I had not been. Once started, you can't please the FAA. I sent a complete set of my medical records, but they wanted more. I had no more. Sometines it's better to lie.

Name withheld


Space Dreams

Regarding your "Question of the Week": I'd love to go to space, but not on some damn 15-minute suborbital flight. I want to spend some time there!

Dale Ingold


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