Category: Aviation

Airlines in Financial doldrums – Can Indian skies stay Safe?

After surveillance of airlines’ financial status, DGCA has surmised that poor financial outcome may affect the safety culture of the affected airlines [1].

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NVG: Pain in the Neck!

Use of Night Vision Goggle (NVG) amongst helicopter aircrew is becoming a matter of concern [1]. On one hand, the pain in the neck is reportedly 29% amongst Australian helicopter aircrew [2], while it peaks to more than 90% Canadian Forces helicopter pilots with more than 150 hours of NVG flight [3]. Other likely causes …

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Safe 2011 – Looking Back

The year gone past – 2011 – should be considered reasonably safe as per the statistics released by Aviation Safety Network [1]. It is heartening to note that third lowest number of fatalities (507, excluding 14 on ground) occurred due to a total of 28 fatal airline accidents, the second lowest number in aviation history …

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Decompression Sickness in HA Reconnaissance Aircraft

Pilots flying high altitude (HA) reconnaissance sorties are vulnerable to decompression sickness (DCS) due to, exposure to “pressure equivalent up to 29,500 ft (8992 m) of altitude for over 8 h” [1]. Cruise altitude of such HA reconnaissance aircraft viz. U-2 [2] and MiG 25 [3] is 70,000 ft and 74,000 ft, respectively. There are two …

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Are SD accidents not so Common in Aviation?

Accidents due to Spatial Disorientation (SD), in military and general aviation, reportedly vary between 2.1 to 31% [1 – 11]. Despite of physiological limitations of the ‘human’ operator, accident statistics do not correctly reflect SD as a cause, as commonly as expected, especially in the military aviation. In fact, in a review of accidents due …

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Say NO! To Self-Medication: Adverse Effects of Some Common Drugs

Adverse effects of some of the common drugs are discussed hereafter. Antibiotics. There are many aprescribed for use in an outpatient consultation. Pilots too may be prescribed antibiotics on occasion, where the treating doctor may inform about specific side effects of the prescribed drug. Yet it is important to be aware of some general side …

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Say NO! To Self-Medication: Beware of Effects of Drugs

In deciding whether to temporarily make a pilot unfit to fly while on medication, it is important to analyse the effects of the drug, and then relate these effects to the mission and the likely aviation stresses, besides the individual’s role in the mission. For instance, loose motions and/or vomiting (Gastroenteritis, the commonest cause of …

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Do Flight Simulators help in Transfer of Learning?

Despite the wide scale acceptance and use of flight simulators, some doubts may continue being raised about their limitations in the transfer of learning, especially whenever there is an aircraft accident. 

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Aviation Medicine Quiz – Ejection and Ejection Seats

Here is a quiz on Ejection and Ejection Seats. Please answer to the best of your knowledge and understanding the following questions pertaining to Ejection.

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Eject! Eject! Eject! – Human Factors in Delayed Ejection

Once the decision to abandon the aircraft is taken, the only action required is to fire the seat by pulling the seat-firing handle. This does not take more than a second or two, yet Air Forces the world over have lost pilots, experienced and rookie, because they waited too long to eject. The human factors …

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