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Handling Inflight Emergencies

by John M. White |

It's something we all train for and hope we never have to use it. No matter how problematic an aircraft emergency could be, pilots should also keep in mind that a procedure or a series of procedures have been made to address such a situation. So what is the proper mindset that every pilot should assume when faced with an emergency inflight?

Be Calm

Calm and collected, level-headed and focused. Emergency procedures require clarity of mind to perform, since they involve making big decisions on one’s part. Hence, every pilot should exhibit and practice a state of collectivism when they encounter an emergency or emergencies with their aircraft. Not in just in aviation, but in anything in this life that requires good judgment and clarity of mind, you need to learn calmness.

Trust Your Training

Come to think of it, you have trained for these types of situations. You've got the skills necessary to face an emergency. It is not the time to be jittery or be unsure of yourself, not unless you haven’t been paying attention to your CFI. :) You wouldn’t have been issued a private pilot certificate if you haven’t, though, so be calm and trust your training because it has given you everything that you need to deal with that emergency. You have the procedures down and learned, so all you have to do is just give in to your training.

Don’t Try to Be a Hero

Most of all, don’t do anything foolish. You may be alone up there in the aircraft but you have a lot to approach for assistance. Always notify ATC of your emergency if able considering 121.5 is now "unmonitored", this way someone can be notified of your status. If you need to make an emergency landing at a soft field, make sure ATC knows. This way someone is looking for you! Emergencies are one of those things you never expect. Stay calm, revert to your training, and do what you know how to do. As a good pilot you should always have a backup plan and be ready for anything. If you wish to learn more about Jason and his Online Ground School Visit him at

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