Airline Training

Posted on 09. Jul, 2009 by in Featured

I just returned from an intensive training session in Dallas. Every 9 months the pilots of American Airlines make their way to the training center just outside the DFW airport. People are always surprised when I mention our 9 month requirement. I’m asked why we do it so often and what it entails.

It is a 3 day event; the first day is classroom work, normally from 08:30 to 18:30 (6:30 PM). Systems review and any new “events” to discuss. The remaining two days are spent in the “box”. A simulator with full motion and visual that is pretty darn close to the real thing. It is intense and your license not to mention your livelihood is on the line. A two hour brief where the crews are quizzed on emergency procedures and system knowledge precedes each sim-session. Then it is 4 fun filled hours of emergency after emergency. I won’t bore you with the details but suffice it to say we fly around most of the 4 hours with an engine shut down or on fire. And that is not enough for our training department they want to see you handle these problems at the toughest airports, normally in the mountains with weather down to minimums.

It is a workout, a good workout, and it is why the major airlines of the world are as safe as they are. The recent string of crashes drives this home. It is also why an Airline Pilot is a Professional; if you can’t handle the stress of a check ride, then consider another occupation.

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