An open letter to the leadership of the LAA

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Re: An open letter to the leadership of the LAA

Postby PiersShedden » Thu Nov 23, 2017 6:07 pm

No Dave, there's no hard evidence for that suggestion, but then there's no evidence for Paul's suggestion that the small additional level of cost would be the final nail in the coffin for potential pilots either. I was just putting an alternative viewpoint - but let's face it, Joe Public's view of GA tends to see it as a high risk activity.

Dave I dont think I'm missing the points - I've acknowledged each and made a response. For example I accept that people have strong views on mandating equipment and I have suggested alternative approaches such as incentivising uptake via lower insurance premiums instead. It doesn't have to be all stick, there can be carrot too which may be more to some people's taste! My goal here is only to improve safety, not to line anyone's pockets or spoil anyone's enjoyment of their flying.

Taking my own point earlier about using existing AAIB mid-air reports to determine if these devices would have an impact I did some quick research myself. Of the first six reports that I read all of them concluded that either vision was impaired or that the pilots' attention was inside the cockpit. Not one of them said that the aircraft was equipped with traffic collision equipment that had been ignored. In each case I considered whether having an instrument telling you to look again/look more carefully/look outside the cockpit would have helped prevent the collision. You dont need me to tell you the answer to that.

I think my personal views are pretty clear from my posts and further comment from me will indeed simply sound like I'm not listening. I'm pleased to have stimulated some debate and got people talking about it, particularly if that helps to move things forward eventually.

Best regards and safe flying.
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Re: An open letter to the leadership of the LAA

Postby mikeblyth » Thu Nov 23, 2017 6:10 pm

What does the US navy use?
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Re: An open letter to the leadership of the LAA

Postby Paul Catanach » Sat Nov 25, 2017 1:05 am

mikeblyth wrote:What does the US navy use?




Conspicuity trails.



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Re: An open letter to the leadership of the LAA

Postby P5151 » Wed Dec 06, 2017 11:32 pm

Piers

I am with you on this. I would never now fly without PAW, for a couple of hundred quid you become aware of something that MK 1 eyeball cannot pick up. Several times now PAW has shown me the relative positions of aircraft and enabled me to plan and act accordingly.

One of the most recent was on the way to the rally, the cloud base was quite low and I could see an aircraft over the reservoir on PAW that I was unable to see visually. a white aircraft masked by a white sky. Anyone who has flown into the rally know you need eyes on pivots to try to spot potential conflict. I did not actually see him until he touched down. Radio transmissions also confirmed what I as seeing on Paw.

In this case I was able to position my aircraft behind the one I could not see but had picked up on PAW and follow it safely into the circuit.

Now, I hope at this point people would be asking themselves, what could have happened if that aircraft had not be visible on PAW, and whether the small cost of this device was well worth paying in terms of added safety.

Having said that I doubt LAA will mandate it but as the CAA are reviewing this, we are likely to be forced by them to buy something a great deal more expensive. PAW actually provides everything you need. ADSB in. Modes S and C in, PAW in and Flarm in. it provides PAW out Flarm out and ADSB out if connected to a mode S transponder. It can be wired for audio as well as visual warnings.

I have given only one example of when PAW helped but there have been numerous times when I have been
A very usefull tool.


I will though give one last example, a friend and I recently flew to Yorkshire to pick up an aeroplane a friend had bought. I took PAW with me to use in the aeroplane I was repositioning for the buyer, my friend had PAW in the aeroplane we went up in. He took off ahead of me and although I lost sight of him as I was taking off I easily relocated him using PAW. We were in very loose formation, more of a case of me following behind while I did some approaches to the stall and got used to the envelope of the aeroplane I was repositioning.

I eventually pulled up to about 1/2 mile in trail of of my friends aircraft using PAw and Mk 1's. All of a sudden Spitfire travelling quite fast appeared at 90 degrees to our flight path at the same height, passing directly behind my friend and in front of me. It was not visible on PAW so apparently not transmitting anything!

While I loved seeing a Spitfire in the air, my friend never saw him at all, I have no idea whether he saw us, and the implications are obvious, either my friend or I could have been in a mid air with a Spitfire.had he been transmitting on anything both my friend and I would been on a visual lookout for him.

For me PAW is as the yanks say. No brainer!

People really need to start to do some jojned up thinking here. from what I read on RVUK forum we are all facing increased insurance cost due to a rise in payouts by insurance companies. Is it not better to spend a couple of hundred quid on something that enhances yours and everyone else's safety, rather than paying it to Insurance companies for losses caused by failure to see or be seen? As I say for me it's a no brainer!
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Re: An open letter to the leadership of the LAA

Postby Chris Martyr » Thu Dec 07, 2017 10:50 am

An interesting post there by Steve .
PilotAware does certainly appear to be quite a useful tool in all of this and the LAA do indeed , quite rightly endorse its use in Decembers LA mag [p.50] .
But Steve also demonstrates in his post the importance of becoming too "task orientated" with such devices . Being surrounded by electrickery should not go fooling the pilot into believing that he's bomb-proof. We all know who is responsible for separation when flying VFR and inviting the respective Authorities into making conspicuity devices into a mandatory fitment is skating on very thin ice indeed .

Luckily , we are somewhat shielded from the European fixation of wanting to legislate for everything , by our own national rules and it would behove us well to not go rattling the regulatory cage too loudly.

Thankfully , mid-air collisions are still pretty rare occurrences and with good , responsible VFR piloting will remain so and despite what some gloom-mongers will have us believe , we still have a lot more freedoms in this country than many other , otherwise civilised countries do.

Electronic Conspicuity - Certainly.
Looking Out - That IS mandatory !
But if you're asking for mandatory legislation , then LOOK-OUT .
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Re: An open letter to the leadership of the LAA

Postby jangiolini » Thu Dec 07, 2017 3:15 pm

I have to agree with Mike.
I fly for fun, I try to keep my skills honed, I try to fly by the ethos of good airmanship, as I was taught. I have seen too many poor pilots with equally poor attitudes flying with a certain disregard for fellow aviators. They includes parachute pilots and commercial pilots with thousands of hours, I have witnessed them with their heads inside the cockpit trying to organise their Gizmos and not having eyes out!!. This would be better looked at rather than more mandates more bureaucracy and cost. No amount of electronic wizardry forced on those who, are possibly unable to understand or use information they are being given will help in these situations.
I realise this view might clash with your own but equally this is the way I see the issue. It is always sad to lose friends and colleagues but knee jerk reactions leading to more legislation is not the answer.
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Re: An open letter to the leadership of the LAA

Postby PB » Thu Dec 07, 2017 7:43 pm

For many years I have refused to post publically on this site but this thread has forced me to respond...

The original request, no matter how well meant is based on a gross fallacy. Namely that small samples sizes (in this case one accident) provide statistically valid information on the larger poulation (in this case, the many thousands of safe hours flown each year and indeed decade without collisions).

If money is to be compulsorarily spent in some way improving aviation safety, it is dubious beyond reckoning that expenditure on collision avaoidance devices to light GA is the best way to do it.

The statistics do not bear it out. I'm sorry, but please, please, please follow the data and if you don't know how to interpret it, seek out someone who does. For anyone who is interested, I thoroughly reccomend the book The Undoing Project by Michael Lewis where these concepts are discussed in a thoroughly understandable way.

I should be interested to know if there is any genuine research into the effectiveness of traffic detection devices in light GA. If there is, I do not know of it. There is much apocryphal 'noise' along the lines of "I nerly bumped into another plane the other day and without system X, I would certainly have crashed" but in so far as I am aware, no hard data from propper trials.

Remember a mid air collision is a binary event. You either collide or you don't. There is no such thing as near-collision. It's like being a little bit pregnant. A collision requires precise alignement of two bodies in four dimensions and the statistical chances of that happening are vanishingly small. And the law of large numbers says that vanishingly small probabability events will always occur if the sample size (hours flown) is large enough. That will not change just because everyone has a traffic detection device. Just because someone had a fright and got close, makes no difference whatsoever to the probability of an actual collision.

That said, I am certainly not avocating that people do not fit either conspicuity devices of traffic detection systems and I have personally shelled out money on the former, but not yet the latter.

I'm not saying it's right or wrong, good or bad, but It is also my firm belief that ADS-B will become mandatory in the near future (near future in aviation terms is less than ten years) not for reasons of light GA traffic avoidance, but to enable UAS, drones etc. The chosen system will be ADS-B and Mode S (as appropriate) and it will require a certified GPS source.

If it does come to pass, the requirement will be based on well reserached and statistically justifiable evidence. But please, no knee jerk reaction based on bias and false assumptions.
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Re: An open letter to the leadership of the LAA

Postby P5151 » Thu Dec 07, 2017 11:46 pm

Hi All

There is much comment about knee jerk reaction and and minimising the number of, and risk of air to airs which I find disturbing. Recent air to airs, include from memory an RV I believe with an instructor on board i think at Shoreham, I think a Pitts and another aircraft somewhere near Leicester, the helicopter most recent one. A friend lost and six killed at Civentry in the circuit. Quite a few lives lost need.essly! How many lives must be lost and over what period of time do we have to have before it stops being called a knee jerk reaction?

I have no doubt that this is why the CAA or looking at this, and probably why they will mandate something.

I will be completely honest, I bought my PAW a couple of years ago at the rally, i did not really want to spend £200 having survived almost 15 years of flying with just Mk1's. However, a friend's arguments persuaded me. Now I know how much I have been missing and I firmly believe we should all have one, it makes flying so much safer, however, because we do not all have them there will be times when you are unaware of an aircrafts proximity.

PAW will never give complete safety ......it is an aid to MK1's, but an invaluable one. Only last week in the circuit we were behind slower traffic. My passenger had spotted the aircraft at 11 o'clock high..... A minute or so later I had still not spotted him. Had he been transmitting PAW would either have been giving me a proximity warning, or a position and height relative to me, far easier to get an eyeball on it then!

I am not connected with PAW in any way but have attended an Inspectors course on them and they are without doubt the best couple of hundred quid you will spend on your aeroplane. Perhaps if you are lucky there will be one in your Chistmas stocking!

One warning though, make sure you get it configured correctly so only traffic relevant to you is shown, and until it just becomes part of your scans do not get fixated on a target and forget to look out for other traffic. Like all systems it has to be learned
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Re: An open letter to the leadership of the LAA

Postby dmcnicholl » Fri Dec 08, 2017 9:45 am

Even if the CAA mandates something, and that something would probably be ADS-B out, there would (probably) be exemptions based on airspace classification and aircraft technical limitations just as there are in FAA land. So in much of the airspace where the lighter end of GA operates a mandate would probably not universally apply. Where then would be the protection that some seem to believe a mandated device would provide and if it does not provide the 'ideal' state of affairs where is the justification for a mandate?

It would come down to the situation we have now, voluntary adoption of some traffic advisory device for those who, perhaps, fly in airspace with higher traffic densities, and that's fine.

If the CAA were inclined to encourage voluntary uptake of, say, ADS-B out, they should consider the very worthwhile carrot of permitting ADS-B out for controlled airspace access but that would, I think, require the agreement of NATS which would in turn require a faith in people's preparedness to operate the equipment unselfishly. Good luck with that.
Last edited by dmcnicholl on Fri Dec 08, 2017 5:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: An open letter to the leadership of the LAA

Postby jangiolini » Fri Dec 08, 2017 3:33 pm

I stand by my knee jerk reaction comment! I will add that its fine knowing there is another aircraft in the vicinity but it is still very difficult to see it as most aircraft are painted white and against a light blue sky or white cloud are very well camoflaged! Maybe we should mandate all aircraft be painted in fluorescent orange to aid visibility. Where does it end!
We are all responsible for looking out for each other and the most important thing is to have eyes out of the cockpit and have less distractions in it!
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Re: An open letter to the leadership of the LAA

Postby P5151 » Sat Dec 09, 2017 12:09 pm

We live in a country where you don't even have to have a radio to fly so mandating thus by the LAA is not going to happen. The CAA may well mandate for certain classes of airspace as has been mentioned.


What I hope is that our members read this and other discussions and come to realise that PAW coupled to Skydemon or similar is a good thing to have and for the money a bargain. I don't think the manufacturers make a penny out of selling their kit.

ADSB out only tells aircraft that have ADSB in where you are, so you are reliant on them seeing you and taking avoiding action. With PAW you can see anything transmitting so you can take avoiding action.


As for painting your aeroplane orange well mine is bright yellow because I take seeing and being seen seriously, I know from experience that too many pilots spend too much time with their head in the cockpit and fail to see what is in front of them, so I want to give myself the best chance I can of being seen.
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Re: An open letter to the leadership of the LAA

Postby Donald Walker » Sun Dec 10, 2017 10:28 am

My insurance broker says I can get a discount on my premium if I install PAW and replace the 912 with a Jabiru.
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Re: An open letter to the leadership of the LAA

Postby mikehallam » Sun Dec 10, 2017 11:48 am

There's no answer to that offer Donald !

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Re: An open letter to the leadership of the LAA

Postby Donald Walker » Sun Dec 10, 2017 3:18 pm

He has a sense of humour Mike. It was a way of saying he reckons I am at far greater risk of having my Rotax 912 stolen than being involved in a MAC.

The installation of PAW will not reduce insurance premiums any more than fitting a transponder, ADS-B out, a BRS, anti-collision lights and a GPS with terrain warnings did.
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Re: An open letter to the leadership of the LAA

Postby Chris Martyr » Sun Dec 10, 2017 8:48 pm

So Donald,
Are you implying that VFR separation , even in CAS, is down to the pilot !
No , that'll never work !
I hope that there has been a risk assessment carried out on all this......[ :lol: ]
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