Archive for August, 2010

Flight school fees: a growing trend?

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010
By Matthew Everett

On Thursday the 24th of August, the Arizona State Board for Private and Postsecondary Education met to discuss the regulation of flight instruction in Arizona. Many instructors and advocacy groups feared that this would create a host of new fees and regulatory hurdles. With the number of flight training providers located in Arizona, this had the potential to be very problematic. The announcement was of particular concern to the National Association of Flight Instructors.

“We are concerned that Arizona may be considering similar fees (to California),” says NAFI Executive Director Jason Blair. “As a state that has a significant number of flight-training providers, we’re concerned about the chilling effect those fees may have on those businesses. We’re encouraging our members in that state to get involved in this issue, so we don’t have a repeat of the California situation.”

According to further reports however, the state board unanimously voted to reject the proposal to consider Part 61 flight schools as “vocational schools.” This is likely very good news to many, but does this indicate a growing trend? Should advocacy groups and instructors be concerned that other states may pass regulations similar to California?

The California law, which recently took effect, has remained fairly unpopular. According to the California lawmakers, the law is intended to protect students. While that may be true enough, the new law does have noticeable adverse effects on flight training operators, including new registration fees and very strict financial regulation. The fear is that such laws will only drive up training costs and force smaller schools out of business.

These fees are an important issue that advocacy groups should continue to discuss. There are some important questions that need to be answered, because regardless of how unpopular the new California law may be, it looks like the issue is spreading.

What’s your opinion, do the benefits outweigh the costs? Is there a better way to protect students?

View a complete list of Arizona flight schools


Matthew Everett is a private pilot, aviation writer, and frequent contributor to You can follow him on twitter @leaving_tf or find his blog at

Delta Connection Academy now Aerosim Flight Academy

Monday, August 30th, 2010
By Matthew Everett

In a recent announcement by Aerosim, Delta Connection Academy has been renamed Aerosim Flight Academy. Aerosim bought Delta Connection in January in an effort to expand the company’s service offerings.

Aerosim is a leading provider of simulation-based training products for customized training solutions that are in use world-wide by commercial air carriers and training providers. With the acquisition of Delta Connections Academy, they now offer training for aviators at any level. From the established career pilot seeking a new type-rating to the low-time primary student, Aerosim can provide training to meet the needs of pilots at any stage.

According to Dave Rapley, Aerosim CEO, “The industry is looking for a partner that can provide a full range of training solutions customized to their requirements. Bringing our technology together with the academy’s airline-based approach to professional pilot training just made sense in terms of providing a modern curriculum using advanced technology and offering an even broader range of customized training solutions. Now as we present under a unified name, we reaffirm our commitment to provide the industry with that singular partner.”

This is no doubt a welcome addition to aviators looking into career training as it provides an integrated platform of training options that are already in use by the very airlines at which they are seeking a career. Additionally, with four campuses in the U.S., Aerosim can train pilots with maximum efficiency.


Matthew Everett is a private pilot, aviation writer, and frequent contributor to You can follow him on twitter @leaving_tf or find his blog at

Middletown Community Foundation establishes aviation scholarship

Saturday, August 28th, 2010

By Matthew Everett

Students in a four county area of Ohio have a new source of financial aid thanks to the Middletown Community Foundation’s establishment of the Aviation Educational Trust Fund. The fund will begin awarding scholarships from the assets of the Middletown Aviation Club, which has been disbanded, to students in Butler, Warren, Montgomery and Preble counties. The students must be enrolled in an accredited university, college, or flight school and seeking a degree or certificate in an aviation-related subject area including aeronautical engineering, airframe and powerplant mechanics, airport management. Students seeking commercial pilot or certified flight instructor certificates are eligible, but those seeking private pilot certificates are not.

The fund has grown out of the Middletown Aviation Club which has a long history of promoting interest in aviation and aviation safety. The club, once open to anyone with an interest in aviation, hosted many aviation events and field trips from August 1940 on. Applications, which are due in February for the first round of scholarships, are available on the Middletown Community Foundation’s website,

For more information see:


Find flight schools in Ohio:

Matthew Everett is a private pilot, aviation writer, and frequent contributor to You can follow him on twitter @leaving_tf or find his blog at

Mid-Air Collision Between Biplane and Remote-controlled Model

Friday, August 27th, 2010

By Matthew Everett

A remote-control airplane show in Brighton, Colorado became the site of an FAA investigation when a remote-controlled model and a biplane collided. The collision was captured on an amateur video.

In the video, the remote-controlled plane, reported to be an AJ Slick model, is hovering over the runway. As the model continues to hover, the biplane, which according to the preliminary FAA report is an Acroduster Too with a smoke system, comes in for a low pass with smoke on and impacts the model. The biplane suffered minor wing damage, but was able to fly away and land safely. The model appeared to be beyond repair.

According to an FAA spokesman, the investigation is in early stages, but investigators have viewed the video and begun a file. Federal Aviation Regulations govern the operation of aircraft, but there are no regulations pertaining to the operation of model aircraft. Further complicating the situation, the event is reported to have taken place at a small, private airfield, so it is unlikely that this collision will result in any enforcement action or other sanctions.


Matthew Everett is a private pilot, aviation writer, and frequent contributor to You can follow him on twitter @leaving_tf or find his blog at

Argentine Pilot Saved by BRS Parachute

Thursday, August 26th, 2010
By Matthew Everett

Aerobatics are fun and exciting, but there is a very serious side to performing aerobatics — sometimes things break. An Argentine airshow pilot recently faced one of the scariest situations flying has to offer after the wing of his Rans S-9 separated from the airframe in flight. The good news is that he had installed a BRS ballistic parachute in the aircraft and he escaped with only a burned foot.

The pilot, Dino Moline, came out of the incident with minor injuries, but the airplane is likely down for the count. Moline was performing for more than 3,500 spectators at Show Aereo 2010. The event, which took place in the northeastern Argentine town of El Trebol, was sponsored by a local flying club.

The pilot was flying a RANS S-9, a popular kit-built aerobatic plane. According to the kit manufacturer, the aircraft is rated for +6 and -4 Gs. The wing separated during an inverted, negative-G maneuver as the pilot pushed into an outside loop. The entire event was captured on video where seconds after the wing spearates, the parachute is deployed.


Matthew Everett is a private pilot, aviation writer, and frequent contributor to You can follow him on twitter @leaving_tf or find his blog at

Top 5 Reasons to Learn How to fly

Wednesday, August 25th, 2010
By Matthew Everett

Learning to fly is one of the most difficult and rewarding things I’ve ever done, but I have to be honest, not everyone enjoys volunteering to pay money to risk their life. I had plenty of people giving me funny looks as I spent days and weeks studying for the exam. The bottom line though is that I wouldn’t go back; flying has paid me back in ways to numerous to name. From the new people I’ve met from all over the country to the relaxing hum of the engine on another long cross country, I’m grateful for every moment spent pursuing flight.

One of the most common questions I faced throughout my training, probably due in part to the fact that I didn’t aspire to fly for airlines, was “Why? Isn’t that an awful lot of trouble?” Recently, I spent some time considering why anyone would want to learn to fly, and I’d like to offer Five Reasons To Learn To Fly. In the article I consider social, personal, and career incentives for learning to fly, feel free to give it a read and send us some feedback.

Find flight schools near you.

Matthew Everett is a private pilot, aviation writer, and frequent contributor to You can follow him on twitter @leaving_tf or find his blog at

Texas-based flight academy takes in Chinese students

Tuesday, August 24th, 2010
By Matthew Everett

US Flight Academy, a US Aviation subsidiary based in Denton, Texas, will take over the training of 60 Chinese student pilots. The students faced an uncertain future after the closure of Wright Flyers Aviation in Hondo, TX, but thanks to a new agreement, US Flight Academy will take over the assets of Wright Flyers Aviation.

The academy currently operates similar programs at other facilities and is looking to get the students flying again within the week. Under the deal, US Flight Academy will also utilize the Hondo facilities to continue the training program which will minimize effects of the transition on the students.

For more information see:—Fight-Training/709/1754/F/1.php

Source: US Aviation to take over flight training program from Wright Flyers Aviation

View a complete list of Texas flight schools

Matthew Everett is a private pilot, aviation writer, and frequent contributor to You can follow him at or find his blog at

New Ruling Keeps Mesa, ASU Program Airworthy

Monday, August 23rd, 2010
By Matthew Everett
A recent ruling in bankruptcy court aims to keep future pilots in the air. According to the deal, Mesa Air Group, Inc. will continue teaching students enrolled in the Arizona State Unversity’s Airline Bridge Training Program. The program is designed to provide students with a bachelor’s degree and all pilot qualifications required for entry as a Mesa first officer.
Mesa, based in Phoenix, is a regional airline operating connector flights for US Airways and United Airlines. Early this year they filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Under the deal Mesa will operate the program for another year, until August 15 2011, and that they will pay $22,885 owed to Arizona State University.

The training is performed at a joint ASU Mesa facility at the Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport. Upon completion, trainees with the required qualifications are granted a preferential interview for a position as a first officer at Mesa.

Under a separate agreement, Mesa will extend another program with a private college in Machida, Japan whose students also enroll at Arizona State.

For more information see:

View a complete list of Arizona flight schools

Matthew Everett is a private pilot, aviation writer, and frequent contributor to You can follow him on twitter @leaving_tf or find his blog at

How to Get the Most From Your Helicopter Flight School Experience

Thursday, August 19th, 2010
By Kyle Garrett
R44 training helicopter

Discover three ways to ensure quality training

Let’s face it, helicopter flight schools are not cheap. With the average price for attending a heli academy pushing $80,000 to $90,000 it’s important to make sure you’re getting the best training you can.

First of all, do your homework and choose your helicopter school carefully. Be sure not to pay all training costs up front, and avoid schools that require large sums to be paid in advance. For more information on these topics, check out these articles:

Five Things to Consider When Looking at Helicopter Schools
Flight Training – Another Warning About Paying Up Front

In his latest article, guest writer Matthew Everett reveals three key ways to get the most from your helicopter school. “Flight training of any sort is a difficult and often expensive undertaking. It is also a collection of some of the most rewarding experiences you will have. For these reasons, it is important that you strive to get the most from your training experience. As they say, your pilot’s license is a license to learn and you should always do what you can to enhance your knowledge.” Read the full How to Get the Most From Your Helicopter Flight School Experience article here.

Please let us know what you think!

Learn to Fly FAST – Three Types of Accelerated Pilot Schools

Tuesday, August 17th, 2010
By Kyle Garrett
turbine otter

Reach your aviation goals faster

Whether you’re launching a new career or just want to learn to fly for fun, you probably want to get your pilot certificates and ratings as fast as possible. On the career side of things, the faster you earn your ticket, the sooner you’re eligible to enter the workforce and start your pilot career, and possibly get a better seniority number to boot. If you’re flying for fun, I’ll bet your busy schedule makes it hard to get to the airport for more than a lesson a week, and at that rate it will take 6-8 months to get your private pilot license.

I can tell you from personal experience that accelerated pilot training is the way to go for all of the reasons listed above, and plenty more. In my case, I earned my private pilot certificate the old fashioned way, fitting training in to my daily work and family life, and it took about 6 months to finally take my check ride (I passed!). When the time came for me to earn my instrument rating, I knew there was no way I was going to get it finished in less than six months without going through some type of accelerated pilot school. After completing a DVD ground school and passing the written exam on my own, I chose to contact one of the 10-day IFR rating schools and scheduled a week and a half off. At the agreed upon time, my CFII showed up in my home town and we began an intense, nine-day training schedule that included at least eight hours a day of training both in the plane and on the ground (using books and an IFR simulator), and, believe it or not, homework. When the tenth day rolled around, I was ready for my check ride and passed! I had done in ten days what normally would take six months.

Last summer, I made a mistake. I started training for my Commercial pilot certificate, and actually was very close to being ready. My mistake was not forcing the training to be accelerated. You can all guess what happened… life got in the way, winter rolled around, and here I am this summer without a commercial ticket. I now know that all of my future training will be accelerated because this really is the best way to reach your aviation goals, professional or recreational.

Since I’m such a firm believer in accelerated training, I asked one of our guest writers, Matthew Everett, to write an article on the three types of accelerated pilot schools that cater to the professional-minded pilot. The article makes a great case for fast-tracking your pilot training and is a quick read. Take a look and let us know what you think. Also, give us your feedback on your training experiences.