Online aviation training company Advanced Aircrew Academy has forged an agreement with aviation insurer USAIG to provide a training-needs assessment gap analysis and additional training services. In addition, the academy continues to expand its services and courses, adding a new training module focusing on ramp safety and jet blast, and committing to making updates to training modules on a weekly basis.
The agreement with the USAIG adds Advanced Aircrew to the insurer’s “Performance Vector” safety initiative, which offers a set of programs for turbine aircraft operators who are policyholders. One important benefit includes support to help underwrite the cost of safety programs provided by Performance Vector participants, such as Advanced Aircrew Academy.
Since operators require regular and updated training, Advanced Aircrew CEO Dan Boedigheimer called these insurance benefits “significant.”
Meanwhile, Advanced Aircrew’s new ramp safety training module is directed towards pilots, mechanics, and line service crews. Its focus is on proper aircraft marshaling, as well as avoiding jet blast damage.
The genesis of the new module was Advanced Aircrew’s awareness of increased reports of jet blast incidents. Boedigheimer said these incidents result when using excessive engine power on the ramp, ground support equipment is not secured, or other aircraft are parked too close.
Though human safety is paramount, the 200 mile-per-hour blast can also damage nearby ground equipment and airplanes. Thus, Advanced Aircrew’s new eLearning module focuses on communication between line service and crews and an awareness of hazards and surroundings while operating on the ramp. The module includes reference documents that can be downloaded for future review.
Finally, the academy is now providing "timely" informational updates. According to Boedigheimer, many training providers update their modules only annually or even less frequently. He said Advanced Aircrew subject matter experts are updating its training modules every week.
As an example, Boedigheimer referenced that so far in 2019, there have been more than 20 runway excursions involving business aircraft. Based on a review of those incidents, the Advanced Aircrew team has developed new case studies to update pilots on hazards or situations that can lead to a runway excursion.
Another set of updates is on winter operations, with Boedigheimer noting that October is the perfect time for reviewing snow, ice, and cold weather flight operations. He cited two new FAA safety documents—a Safety Alerts for Operators and Information for Operators alert—that offer guidance on contaminated runway operations and an updated list of cold temperature restricted airports.
In addition to incorporating these changes, Advanced Aircrew has developed a new video with a case study of a crew that departed with what appeared to be raindrops on the wing, but was actually ice.
Another area for the company’s focus on updates is for international procedures, including strategic lateral offset procedures in the North Atlantic. Boedigheimer said Advanced Aircrew is on top of the FAA’s new mandates for updated training on North Atlantic contingency procedures. The academy also continuously monitors similar training demands for other global regions, he added.
“Training needs to be timely. Training mitigates hazards—it makes the whole sequence of flight safer,” said Boedigheimer. And he pointed out that the FAA requires training to be aligned with the latest experiences and knowledge in the field: “Operators have to show the FAA not just that they have a training program but that their crews are getting the latest training on safety and operations.”