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Tuesday, March 1, 2016


After 10 Years, Have We Failed?

Regarding your February cover story on the International Helicopter Safety Team and its goal of an 80% cut in helicopter accidents, I’d say corrective action depends on the cause.

Pilot error, give pilots more training and more flight time especially. Mechanical malfunction, either improve maintenance procedures, maintainers or maintenance training, or get better/newer equipment. And if fatigue is an issue don’t over work your flight crews.

Taylor K. Davis

I am sick and tired of U.S. media acting as if aviation accidents carry more weight and concern than people getting killed in car accidents. While the goal of operating any vehicle is to accomplish travel without accidents, the real story is that when it comes to deaths by road vehicles each year, this information this is being extremely well masked by the help of the media.

Over 30,000 deaths occur by motor vehicle accidents each year in the U.S. alone. Over 2.4 million people have died on U.S. roads in the last 80 years. Now this is absolutely a moral outrage!

Yet the media, U.S. citizens and politicians apparently couldn’t care less about this. They are tight-lipped about it and obviously have little care or compassion for this annual highway holocaust.

Now compare deaths by road accidents to helicopter accidents: According to the International Helicopter Safety Team, from 1997 through 2005 the number of civil helicopter accidents (not deaths) averaged 570 each year. That’s it? A moral outrage??

I propose the problem is that many people have an inadequate understanding of morals (based on science) and therefore can joyfully refuse to see the immoral nature of the media, the general U.S. population and politicians not actively trying to reduce car deaths in the U.S. (or in any country) and making this a national priority.

When the media, U.S. citizens and our politicians recognize that car deaths in the U.S. is a national disgrace and shame, they’ll fix the problem. Then let’s have a detailed discussion on not criticizing the International Helicopter Safety Team, but how all of us in the helicopter community can help decrease helicopter accidents in the future.

Mike, in a comment on www.rotorandwing.com


After reading your feedback section ( February 2016, page 8), I completely agree with various comments about the topic “Disclosure Woes.” Then you printed other articles like “After 10 years, Have We Failed?” ( page 32) and “Flight Reports” ( page 36) in the same issue.

As long as the FAA keeps getting pushed back from doing the right thing by emergency medical service operators and as long as Occupational Safety and Health Administration investigators take one year for a whistleblower investigation (even though their regulation mandates 60 days), no pilot will come forward just to get fired like I was for bringing up pencil-whipped inspections (confirmed by the FAA) and other safety-related issues.

“Pencil whipping” and other grounding maintenance issues will continue to be reported after the aircraft arrives at its home base, putting passengers and the rest of the public in danger. My case is still currently with OSHA, so I won’t go into details now, but it’ll all be public records soon.

Name Withheld Upon Request

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