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Weather in Flight

For most people, checking the weather is a simple matter of sticking a hand out the window. Cold? Wear a scarf. Raining? Get a jacket. But for pilots, the weather report is not so straightforward. Weather conditions, good or bad, have a dramatic impact on how an aircraft needs to be flown, so knowing the weather in intimate detail is an essential part of the pilot’s job; pilots must work with the weather, never against it. Coast Flight Training embraces this paradigm and therefore spares no effort to make sure pilots know how to assess and respond to various types of weather conditions.

Gauging the Weather

Weather is described in two ways: what is happening currently (observation), and what is going to happen soon (forecast). Both types of information are useful to pilots, and are equally important to know. Both are available via a variety of reporting formats.

Observation:

  • METAR: The most common source of weather information for pilots worldwide, these are issued mainly by airports.
  • Radar summary report: Information about precipitation.
  • U.A. reports: Probably the best source, these are reported by pilots in the air and give real time weather conditions.

Forecasts come through a separate set of reports, including:

  • Terminal aerodrome report (TAF): Provided by some—but not all—airports, these are predictions for the local area in the immediate future.
  • Area forecast (FA): Explains the reasons for weather conditions.
  • 12 and 24-hour prognostic reports: Predicts where pressures and fronts will move.

Stay Informed, Stay Safe

Pilots must become comfortable reading these and other weather reports so they can stay abreast of the most current situations and fly accordingly. Before flying, check these reports and make a careful “go/no-go” decision. While in the air, continue to check for updates and adjust your flight plan whenever necessary. Know your personal limits and those of the aircraft so the weather can remain a friend and not become an enemy.

The Surface Prognostic (Prog) Charts are available at the Aviation Digital Data Services

Valuable Training for Right-Seaters and Passengers

No matter how talented or experienced a pilot is, there is still a great need for him or her to have an alert and knowledgeable partner in command. There is always the possibility that the pilot could become incapacitated or overwhelmed during a flight due to unforeseen, dangerous weather conditions or other complications. No matter what problem arises, it is the right-seater’s duty to ensure that the other passengers and airplane are kept safe if the pilot is no longer able to do so.

The duties and necessary skills of the right-seater are more than meet they eye. For example, does he/she know what to say on a radio, or even how to operate one? How to find and activate the ELT from the right seat? Does he or she have first aid or medical training, including experience dealing with choking victims, hypoxia, carbon monoxide exposure and other flight-relevant issues? Is he or she familiar with how to steer to a CAPS-suitable area using autopilot?

For the answer to all of these questions and many more, Partner in Command training can be of invaluable assistance to any right-seater, or even a passenger. Non-pilot companions who frequently sit next to the pilot, such as spouses or other loved ones, could benefit especially from this training. It is designed to make these frequent flyers more at ease in the aircraft, teach them how to be an active participant in the flight as a resource to the pilot, and explain the availability and use of safety equipment in an emergency, including the Cirrus Airframe Parachute System (CAPS).

A few ways in which the partner in command can be of assistance include:

  • Assisting in the general safety needs of the captain, himself/herself and the passengers.
  • Acting as an extra pair of eyes to watch for bad weather, traffic or other hazards, while also assisting in radio communication and direction.
  • Helping passengers in the event of an emergency, and offering emergency parachute assistance in case the pilot is unable to do so.

In addition to our course for partners in command, Coast Flight Training offers an introductory course to help passengers excel in their ability to help. This course covers:

  • Basic pilot skills

–       Introduction to radio communications

–       Cockpit resource management

–       Flight maneuvers

  • Familiarization with the Cirrus equipment

–       Systems operation

–       GPS use, how to find useful information and autopilot management

–       Procedures for getting help and deploying the CAPS

  • Emergency procedures in the event of pilot incapacitation

In certain cases, learning what is available in these courses can mean the difference between life and death. The decision to take one of these extremely helpful courses is a no-brainer!

 

Working with Will Dryden and Chris Krone at Coast Flight Training has been a great experience. I purchased a 2001 Cirrus SR22 that was located on the field. It was in need of maintenance which Will was very instrumental at getting it in for service. I live 1400 miles away from San Diego so logistics became a problem. Will was quick to offer one of his instructors to fly the plane to my location. Chris Krone was the pilot who flew my new plane to my location. He communicated the progress of the flight at every stop. Thanks to the exceptional customer service at Coast Flight Training the plane made it to it’s new home without any problems!

Jim McCullough
Cedar Rapids, IA

Crownair Aviation and Coast Flight Training Join to Enhance the Cirrus Aircraft Experience

Cirrus Aircraft Names Crownair Aviation and Coast Flight Training as Platinum Partner Service and Training Centers

San Diego, Calif.; May 11, 2011. Crownair Aviation and Coast Flight Training and Management Inc. today announced their alliance as Cirrus Platinum Partners for Authorized Service and Training respectively.   The honor of becoming a Cirrus Platinum Partner is reserved for only those members of the Cirrus network who exhibit and consistently maintain the highest quality customer service, training standards and technical skills world-wide.

Both companies are located at Montgomery Field Airport (KMYF) in San Diego, CA and offer Cirrus Aircraft owners and pilots the only complete Cirrus Aircraft Partner Facility on the West Coast.

Crownair Aviation maintains Coast Flight Training’s fleet of Cirrus Aircraft and is open to the public for aircraft service, inspections, maintenance and avionics.  All airframe technicians have completed the Cirrus Initial training program, Specialized Composite Repair Lab in Duluth, CAPS Line Cutter Replacement, and AmSafe seat belt restraint training.  Crownair’s Avionic Technicians attended Garmin 1000 and Cirrus Perspective by Garmin training in Olathe.  Crownair can handle it all, from routine service such as oil changes to major repairs and engine overhauls / exchanges.  Crownair relies on Coast Flight’s expert group of instructor pilots to relocate aircraft when needed for service.

Coast Flight Training and Management Inc. is the finest and best-equipped Cirrus training center in Southern California. It counts on top tier Professional Pilot Instructors and a fleet that is composed of new and modern Cirrus SR20s and SR22s. The Cirrus is the best-selling, single engine piston in the world and features instruments and controls similar to commercial jetliners. The Cirrus Airframe Parachute System (CAPS™) provides top of the line, unprecedented safety. Coast uses a Scenario Based Training program (SBT), which enables pilot graduates from the academy to immediately enter the pilot ranks of commercial airlines. SBT is used by the military and airlines, and focuses on providing the student with the critical decision-making skills necessary to exercise the duties and responsibilities of the Pilot In Command. Using modern Cirrus aircraft and implementing SBT has proven to be instrumental in attracting customers and makes Coast Flight Training unique in its complete preparation of students.  In addition, Coast owns and operates brand new full motion RedBird flight simulator set up to train in the Cirrus platform.

“As a part of Crownair’s leadership team and a Coast Flight Training student pilot in the Cirrus SR20, I feel confident in this alliance”, says Debi Carlston, Director of Marketing of Crownair Aviation.  “Every time I fly, I feel secure in knowing that the aircraft are maintained extremely well and my instructors are top notch.”

About Crownair Aviation

Crownair Aviation has a history of exemplary customer satisfaction that spans six decades.  Crownair provides a wide range of aircraft services including a dedicated fuel station, pilot and passenger amenities, personalized concierge service, hangar space, and two class-leading maintenance and avionics service centers.  As one of the most experienced and respected names on the West Coast, Crownair has been serving the aviation community since 1951.  For more information on Crownair Aviation, visit www.crownairaviation.com or call any of our locations:

Crownair Aviation-MYF: 858-277-1453
Crownair Aviation-CRQ: 760-431-5315

About Coast Flight Training

Coast Flight Training and Management Inc. deploys its business in a state-of-the-art facility composed of six fully equipped classrooms and a large auditorium. Flying lessons are conducted in new and modern Cirrus SR20s and SR22s fleet are complemented by theoretical instruction carried out in a brand new full motion RedBird flight simulator. For more information on Coast Flight Training and Management Inc. http://iflycoast.com or call:

Coast Flight Training and Management:  858-279-4359

Congratulations To Coast President, Will Dryden!

Will has been approved by Cirrus and designated as a Platinum CSIP. Dedication to the CSIP program, Cirrus flight instruction, and the Cirrus brand are recognized.   As a Cirrus Platinum Partner, Will has joined an elite group consisting of only the top Cirrus Standardized Instructor Pilots that have differentiated themselves as the best in an already fantastic network of partners.

Will wasn’t just handed this title.  He has been working hard since the day he started Coast.  Last month, Cirrus sent out one of their own from Duluth, to come fly with Will.  Randi Pederson put him through a full Cirrus checkride prior to deeming him worthy of this elite title.

Even Cirrus Aircraft was quoted: “. . .Cirrus Aircraft team is truly appreciative of your dedication to the safety of the pilots of our airplanes, and are privileged to have such talented flight instructors such as yourself as a partner.”

Congratulations on achieving this distinctive title Will.  Everyone at Coast is proud to be working with you.

As a beginner pilot, it’s important to develop good habits right from the get-go. This is made much easier when the very first aircraft you pilot is a high-quality, technically advanced model like the one you’ll fly as a professional. At Coast Flight Training, all trainees are given access to a Cirrus aircraft—categorized by the FAA as a technically advanced aircraft (TAA)—to help students avoid having to re-learn basic techniques, as they would have to do if they started on an inferior aircraft.

But what makes the Cirrus worthy of a TAA title? A TAA is equipped with, at least, a moving map display (to communicate real-time flight information to passengers using information from the navigation system), an IFR-approved GPS navigator and an autopilot (a mechanical, hydraulic or electrical system to guide a vehicle without human assistance). With these tools, a pilot can be more aware of his or her location, the terrain, weather and traffic in the area. Moreover, built-in redundancies in a TAA ensure that if one system fails, there is a second on hand to pick up the slack. In the Cirrus, a specialized avionics system in the cockpit keeps all this data organized and easily accessible by the pilot at all times via two displays: the Primary Flight Display (PFD) and the Multifunction Display (MFD). The MFD shows a range of useful information, including the following:

The moving map
Terrain
XM Weather
Traffic
Engine instrumentation
Checklists
Airport Information
XM Radio (when workload is low in cruise)
EVS Infrared Vision

In such a versatile and high-performing aircraft, passengers, crew and cargo stand a better chance of a safe, successful flight. Coast Flight trainees have access to all this technology right from the beginning—a unique experience for student pilots in San Diego that they can get only at Coast. Additionally, the entire Cirrus Transition Course can be completed in only 10-12 hours, which is easily manageable in a weekend!


Coast Flight Training welcomes our newest Cirrus to the fleet. N788JN is a 2004 Cirrus SR20 that comes with WAAS and Traffic system upgrades. The aircraft was bought in Oregon and will be delivered next week.

As you can see on the Multi Function Display a strong cold front was approaching Aurora State Airport when Will took the airplane for the test flight. All he said was “this is not San Diego weather for sure!” Winds were 170@17 gusting 33kts, Moderate Turbulence and rain really starting to come down hard! Besides the nasty weather the plane flew flawless and will be an amazing addition to the Coast Flight Training Fleet!


Weather can be a pilot’s best friend or worst enemy. For the true pilot, there is hardly anything more pleasant than a flight on a beautiful day, but inclement weather can quickly create situations that are both difficult and hazardous. Even worse, bad weather has a tendency to turn up out of nowhere like an unwelcome distant relative during the holidays. Coast Flight Training is committed to preparing its pilots for bad weather so that when the winds howl and the sky darkens, those pilots can bring their aircraft safely and successfully back home.

Summer Mountain Waves

Unfortunately, not all undesirable weather conditions manifest like rainclouds, in a readily noticeable way. Mountain waves, for example, are strong invisible wind currents that form as air flows over mountain ridges. Loss of control of the aircraft and subsequent disaster can result if these currents catch a pilot off-guard. Although the currents are themselves invisible, the perceptive pilot who knows what to look for can still spot them. Look for standing lenticular and rotor clouds, which appear deceptively motionless, but in fact indicate winds of up to 50 knots or greater. If you suspect mountain waves, keep a high altitude. You’ll want to gain at least 4,000 feet before crossing the mountain, and if possible, plan to cross at a 45-degree angle.

Thunderstorms

More easily noticeable than mountain waves, but no less dangerous, thunderstorms in Southern California tend to form over mountains and always point to unstable atmospheric conditions. A thunderstorm is a deadly cocktail of every possible weather phenomenon and should always be avoided. Never fly under a thunderstorm, and if you must fly around it, keep a distance of at least 20 miles.

Bad weather rushes to mountains like a moth to the flame, so whenever you fly near mountains, keep an eye open for these and other potential hazards. As always, keep multiple plans handy so you can adapt if as the situation changes.

For most people, checking the weather is a simple matter of sticking a hand out the window. Cold? Wear a scarf. Raining? Get a jacket. But for pilots, the weather report is not so straightforward. Weather conditions, good or bad, have a dramatic impact on how an aircraft needs to be flown, so knowing the weather in intimate detail is an essential part of the pilot’s job; pilots must work with the weather, never against it. Coast Flight Training embraces this paradigm and therefore spares no effort to make sure pilots know how to assess and respond to various types of weather conditions.

Gauging the Weather

Weather is described in two ways: what is happening currently (observation), and what is going to happen soon (forecast). Both types of information are useful to pilots, and are equally important to know. Both are available via a variety of reporting formats.

Observation:

  • METAR: The most common source of weather information for pilots worldwide, these are issued mainly by airports.
  • Radar summary report: Information about precipitation.
  • U.A. reports: Probably the best source, these are reported by pilots in the air and give real time weather conditions.

Forecasts come through a separate set of reports, including:

  • Terminal aerodrome report (TAF): Provided by some—but not all—airports, these are predictions for the local area in the immediate future.
  • Area forecast (FA): Explains the reasons for weather conditions.
  • 12 and 24-hour prognostic reports: Predicts where pressures and fronts will move.

Stay Informed, Stay Safe

Pilots must become comfortable reading these and other weather reports so they can stay abreast of the most current situations and fly accordingly. Before flying, check these reports and make a careful “go/no-go” decision. While in the air, continue to check for updates and adjust your flight plan whenever necessary. Know your personal limits and those of the aircraft so the weather can remain a friend and not become an enemy.

The Surface Prognostic (Prog) Charts are available at the Aviation Digital Data Services

March 10, 2011
TO: Airline Apps Applicants
RE:  American Eagle Pilot Hiring News

American Eagle Pilot Recruitment wanted to share some exciting news with you.  American Eagle began hiring over a year ago.  We hired 255 pilots in 2010.  Our hiring projections for 2011 is over620 pilots.  Why the big increase?  Four main factors are driving the increase:

  • Delivery of new CRJs
  • Senior Pilots Flowing to American Airlines
  • Increased capacity and expanding route structure
  • Impending changes to the rest rules

If you would like to be a part of these exciting times, make sure you have filled out the application for American Eagle Airlines including our addendum.  We are interviewing every week and pilot classes are starting every other week.  It would be our pleasure to have you come for an interview so we can meet and discuss your employment possibilities with American Eagle.

If you have an application on file and are interested in a pilot position please send your resume to: AePilotRecruitment@aa.com


Pilot Recruitment
American Eagle Airlines