Pilot Uses FlightAware To Emphasize Social Distancing


Almost since its inception, creative pilots have used FlightAware’s graphics to trace artistic renderings over the map underlay (some not suitable for a family website) but not many have conveyed the sense of social responsibility evident in an Austrian pilot’s 24-minute track last week. In what looks like a freehand effort, the unidentified pilot took off in a Diamond DA40 from Diamond headquarters in Wiener Neustadt and spelled out “STAYHOME” going west to east before underlining the message with a westward track ending in Graz. The flight occurred on the same day the Austrian government publicly urged residents to stay home and not to gather in groups of five or more.

Russ Niles
Russ Niles is Editor-in-Chief of AVweb. He has been a pilot for 30 years and joined AVweb 22 years ago. He and his wife Marni live in southern British Columbia where they also operate a small winery.

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  1. Couple things:
    The track took more than 24 minutes (more than 1 hour). Also, the flight was a local flight from and to Wiener Neustadt (FR24 got that wrong).
    The pilot (Diamond Aircraft company pilot) was austrian, though.

  2. The willingness of the public, worldwide, to roll over and go dormant is very disturbing. There are things available – today – that could be implemented to return society to near-normal. Instead nearly everyone is simply following the orders of The Authorities. No questions, no resistance. If this continues very long catastrophic results will ensue. Such as when the food supply in storage is GONE. Locking yourself in your home is NOT a solution. It is an enormous problem.
    No, I’m not going to debate on the measures that are available. You can discover those for yourself. It is not the point of this post.

  3. A solo flight in your own airplane does not break any social distance rules and is a great way to ditch cabin fever. Just avoid the pilot’s lounge and the community coffee pot and you should be fine.

  4. Obviously this xenophobic message is only viewable from space. That being the case, the only take away is that it means “E.T. stay home”. Evidently FlightAware’s algorithms are not yet advanced enough to scrub anti-alien sentiments posted on their medium.

  5. I’m glad to see avgas consumed and freedom executed but the message is tragic. Surrendering God given rights to government edict is never the right choice for free individuals, but rather subjects.