Precautionary landing

Tue, 15.01.2013 - 00:00

There are times during flight training when I sense some students feel they are doing a lot of training for an incident that will probably never occur. This may be true and I hope that none of us have to experience a serious in-flight emergency. However, statistics show that an incident can happen to anyone at anytime. And, unfortunately incidents do not choose an ideal time to happen or the most experienced pilot. More often than not it is the weekend pilot out for an enjoyable morning or afternoon flight.


The overhead arrival

Tue, 01.01.2013 - 00:00

Straight in to downwind or overhead? Hmmm...

Yesterday, a pilot mentioned this situation after arriving at Rockcliffe: he was coming in to land from the South (upwind). He announced his position when released by Ottawa Tower and then again 2.4 NM away (GPS...), with his intentions to join overhead for mid-downwind for runway 27. Then he heard another pilot announcing his position as over the Gatineau River with intentions to join straight in downwind for 27. OK quickly now: has this ever happened to you?

This happens quite often at Rockcliffe and other uncontrolled airports. There are two different ways to join the circuit, overhead and straight in to downwind. Pilots will choose to use the two different ways, sometimes simultaneously. This can easily lead to dangerous conflict situations or at minimum an uncomfortable moment for pilots wondering where the others are. This situation can be complicated by additional traffic already in the circuit.