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July 2017

Welcome to July from everyone at Rotorworks. Hopefully your all enjoying your summer despite all the rain and bugs we seem to be getting this year. This month we're going to talk a little about airmanship, see what Ryan has been up to and have a look at what the rest of the summer holds. 

Ryan has been really busy for June working up North flying tree planters around in the astar. Here are a few photos of what he's been up to.

Airmanship


The Oxford Dictionary definition of airmanship is: "skill in flying an aircraft" but as pilots it has far more meaning than that. It's more of a state of mind than anything, an awareness of everything that is happening around you, not just what your hands and feet are doing. Good airmanship starts long before you get in the helicopter and keeps going after your done flying.
Remember in last months issue on Power Management when we talked about the importance of planning before your flight? That comes from good airmanship.
What is the weather going to be en route? Will it require a diversion? How many people are you taking? What's your performance for the day? These are a few of the questions to be asking before your flight and whether you realize it or not your customers can see the difference when you make this effort.
Airmanship is always on going, it never stops. It's about having a relationship with the helicopter and your surroundings. It's fine to do your run-up at 100% RPM at a controlled airport where they are expecting you to depart immediately. It would show poor airmanship to sit in a confined area at full bore blowing dirt and debris over your helicopter and crew while you find the next way point in your GPS. 
The same can be said about overflying obstacles and buildings. At a controlled airport they are expecting you to fly over a certain point which may require you to fly over buildings. If your landing everyday at your base in uncontrolled airspace and making your approach over the only two houses for miles around, guess what, that would be considered poor airmanship. Although we all love the sound of a helicopter some people don't (we know strange right?). Fly neighborly whenever possible, the people in those houses will appreciate it.
Airmanship is everything you do as a pilot. It's consideration for your passengers, care of your aircraft, awareness of other aircraft. It's self discipline when flying, it's knowing the helicopters capabilities and being big enough to admit that today it might be your capabilities that are the limiting factor.
This is merely a scratch on the surface of airmanship, it's not something that's easy to teach in the classroom, we can talk about it but you have to fly to get it. Treat every flight as an opportunity to learn something new. Never stop trying to improve your skills, decision making and situational awareness. Remember that self-discipline we talked about when you were in school. It's easy to let it slip when there is no instructor keeping you inline. Remember that old adage: "Fly like you train and train like you fly".

Refresher

Do you remember these METAR codes?
 
RA           -GS          VC          TS          PL          UP

See below for the answers

We're open all summer!

As you're all aware Rotorworks often closes for a month or two in the summer while we are flying operationally for other companies. Although we are still doing this from time to time this year we will be open all summer if anybody is looking to get their hands on the sticks for an hour or two. Just give us a call and stop in for a coffee fif your passing through Whitecourt.

Refresher Answers
 
RA Moderate Rain    -GS Light Snow Pellets    VC Vicinity    TS Thunderstorm    PL Ice Pellets    UP Unknown Precipitation
 
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