Weather was not my best subject in flight school, though I readily accepted its importance for pilots. On the FAA written exam for my ATP, six of the eight questions I got wrong were about weather.
Airports in the U.S. East Coast escaped largely unscathed by high winds from Hurricane Irene this weekend, though flooding presented a problem at the metro New York City airfields, particularly Teterboro and Caldwell, N.J. Like TEB, Morristown and Newark Liberty International Airports were shut down at noon on Saturday, with the latter two restarting operations by Sunday evening.
As Hurricane Irene approaches the U.S. East Coast, Signature Flight Support is urging pilots and aircraft operators in the watch and warning areas to contact their FBOs regarding securing aircraft, and also to check the operational status of airports and FBOs. “It is likely that affected areas will experience power and phone outages, so please act early,” the FBO chain advised.
General DeWitt Spain Airport (M01) in Memphis, Tenn., has been closed since May 4 by the epic flooding of the Mississippi River. Home to more than 70 aircraft (including several turboprops), the general aviation airport was under as much as 12 feet of water, according to a Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority spokesman. In 1987 the authority built a levee to protect the airport from the nearby river.
Zenith Jet created a stir in the industry last year when it debuted its first “bottom up” business aviation forecast. And it didn’t pull any punches in its second annual bizjet forecast, a detailed 40-page report released last Wednesday that predicts 11,103 business jets worth $240 billion will be delivered over the next 10 years, with a peak in 2016 and trough in 2018.
Three helicopters being used to warm crops against cold temperatures and frost overnight in Western Palm Beach County, Fla., crashed in the early morning hours of December 8 in separate accidents between 2:10 and 7:40 a.m. The accidents involved two Robinson R44s and one Bell 206L-3. Only the pilot of the 206, the most extensively damaged of the three aircraft, sustained serious injuries.
Bell 206-L4, Sabine Pass, Texas, Dec. 11, 2008–The LongRanger crashed into the Gulf of Mexico, killing the pilot and four passengers, as a result of the commercial pilot’s failure to maintain clearance from the water, according to the NTSB. A contributing factor was the Part 135 flight’s inadvertent encounter with IMC conditions.