Posts Tagged ‘faa’

POINT / COUNTERPOINT: TechCrunch on “AirPooler is Lyft for Private Airplanes”

Thursday, April 3rd, 2014

AirPooler is Lyft for Private Airplanes

“Law prohibits private pilots from profiting from passengers so you only pay for your share of the cost of the flight plus a 20 percent fee to AirPooler”

UH, THE PILOTS _ARE_ PROFITING FROM PASSENGERS, ARGUABLY.

The Federal Aviation Administration also bars private plane pilots from advertising flights, which is why AirPooler is careful to never promote any specific flights.

THIS IS STARTING TO READ LIKE A PRESS RELEASE, TECH-CRUNCH!

It’s hired as its general council the former assistant chief council of regulation of the FAA to make sure it doesn’t break the law.

ALTHOUGH OF COURSE IT’S ENTIRELY POSSIBLE THAT AIRPOOLER WILL BE FOUND TO BE OUTSIDE OF THE REGULATIONS – OF COURSE HIRING ANY PARTICULAR PERSON DOESN’T CHANGE THIS FACT. ALSO, “assistant chief council” SHOULD BE “COUNSEL,” AS THE DUDE COUNSELS PEOPLE – THAT’S HOW YOU REMEMBER THE DIFFERENCE

So why the hell would you want to get in a stranger’s airplane? Because the alternatives, namely driving and commercial air travel, can be a nightmare.

OF COURSE CRASHING AND BURNING CAN BE A GENERAL AVIATION “NIGHTMARE” AS WELL, RIGHT?

It says to fly from Palo Alto to Tahoe using AirPooler it would take about an hour and cost $50.

ABOUT AN HOUR _AND SOMETHING_, MORE CORRECTLY, RIGHT?

Fifty-five percent of pilots in a small survey in Boston said they’d even add additional flights to take AirPooler passengers.

UH, THIS IS STARTING TO SOUND LIKE AN AIR TAXI TO ME

Lewis admits the core challenge will be gaining consumer mind share and convincing them AirPooler is safe and simple, which it might not be.

WELL, HOW REFRESHING. YES, GENERAL AVIATION ISN’T ALL THAT SAFE, INDEED. PLUS FIVE FOR GRYFFINDOR!

Luckily, prop planes are relatively safe compared to other transportation methods, and the planes can glide back to the ground in case of an engine failure.

WTF? MINUS 20 FOR GRYFFINDOR HOUSE! PROP PLANES ARE ABSOLUTELY NOT SAFE COMPARED WITH OTHER TRANSPORTATION METHODS. IN MOST GA MISHAPS, THE AIRPLANE AINT “GLIDING” WHEN IT TOUCHES GROUND. GENERAL AVIATION IS AT LEAST AN ORDER OF MAGNITUDE _LESS_ SAFE THAN DRIVING ON THE FREEWAY*

Still, accidents are most common with pilots with fewer than 100 hours of experience.

WRONG! IRL, ACCIDENTS ARE MORE COMMON WITH PILOTS WITH _MORE_ THAN 100 HOURS OF EXPERIENCE.

As more of our formerly prized possessions like albums and photos get digitized, society is putting a higher and higher value on experiences.

WHAT?

ALL RIGHT, THAT’S MOST OF IT.

*OF LOVE, IN A PINK CADILLAC.

SFO Update: Old Air Traffic Control Tower, New Air Traffic Control Tower, Under Construction, Telephoto

Thursday, March 6th, 2014

In my day, ATC towers were symmetrical, AND THAT WAS THE WAY WE LIKED IT!

These days, IJDK, IJDK:

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SFO Construction Update: New Traffic Control Tower, Tower Crane, Old Traffic Control Tower

Wednesday, February 5th, 2014

They’ve made some progress the past five months:

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What SFO Needs are Longer Runways that are Farther Apart, What SFO is Getting are $7000 Fritz Hansen “Egg” Chairs

Thursday, January 16th, 2014

Look what UAL has in store for you at SFO:

“Comfortable seating options that include the iconic Fritz Hansen “egg” chairs and swivel lounge chairs”

All is forgiven, United, ’cause I’m sitting on one of your “iconic” egg chairs.*

And of course the rest of Terminal 3 will soon be loaded up with every other flavor of the month airport accessory.

But the citizens of San Francisco don’t owe the flying public an assortment of googaws, no no. What the citizens of San Francisco  owe the flying public are longer, better runways that are farther apart from each other, you know, runways that don’t need a special dispensation from the FAA. To wit:

Damn the torpedo fish (or whatever else is down there), full speed ahead (with longer and better runways farther apart)

OK then.

And oh, the concomitant Egg™ Footstool costs thousands of dollars  as well.

Happy Flying!

*If United sprang for leather, then the retail price is $16k each, srsly.

Ever more deets after the jump.

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The Floating Helicopters of San Francisco – How Inflatable Airbags Help When Crash Landing in the Bay

Thursday, November 21st, 2013

These tourist choppers sometimes conk out near the Golden Gate Bridge and when that happens then only thing for the pilot to do is pop open the compressed gas container you can see there in order to inflate the six airbags you can also see there.

Then a call to the Coast Guard, which will give you a friendly tow to land, hurray!

It happens sometimes

FAA Launches Five Year Plan to Improve Training – Addresses Pilot Errors in Recent Air France, Comair, and Air Colgan Crashes

Wednesday, November 6th, 2013

Here’s the news of the day:

Stall Recovery, Simulator Improvements In New FAA Training Rule”
By John Croft john.croft@aviationweek.com
Source: AWIN First

Well this certainly covers the gamut of the ways that commercial pilots have killed their passengers the past decade or so. The last major crashes we’ve had in America were in 2001 (caused by terrorism and, in one case, by some odd rudder inputs) and it would appear that those issues have already been addressed.

And here’s something to ponder:

“The agency says the costs of implementing the rule, in part due to the simulator upgrades, will be as much as $354 million, while the benefits of accidents averted will be $689 million.”

It seems that the feds have assigned a dollar figure to the value of your life. Maybe it’s $10,000,000 or so.

How do you feel about that?

Anyway, I feel pretty good about this push from the FAA

Coming & Going at Crowded SFO – Yeah, We Could Separate the Runways to Meet Current Standards, But We Don’t Wanna

Wednesday, October 16th, 2013

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SFO experiences delays (known as flow control) in overcast weather when only two of the airport’s four runways can be used at a time because the centerlines of the parallel runways are only 750 feet (230 m) apart. Airport planners have floated proposals to extend the airport’s runways into San Francisco Bay to accommodate arrivals and departures during low visibility. To expand into the bay the airport would be required by law to restore bay land elsewhere in the Bay Area to offset the fill. Such proposals have met resistance from environmental groups, fearing damage to the habitat of animals near the airport, recreational degradation (such as windsurfing) and bay water quality. Such delays (among other reasons) caused some airlines, especially low-cost carriers, to shift service to Oakland and San Jose

Here It Is, Your “Dramatic” New Airport Control Tower at SFO, About Halfway Finished

Wednesday, September 25th, 2013

September 2013:

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It’ll have a torch-like air, they say.

The Joys of Buzzing Market Street in Your Aging Cessna 310 Twin – What’s the “Minimum Safe Altitude” Over SF?

Wednesday, February 27th, 2013

This is a Cessna 310, or something similar, just after it buzzed the Financial at well under Minimum Safe Altitude, which in this case is 1000-something feet above ground level.

Escaping to the northeast:

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Now, do I have your tail number? No I don’t. So you win this round, Flyboy.

Regardless, I cry foul.

Until next time…

(And try to not kill yourself or your  passengers or any ground-dwellers before then.)

 

 

Know Your Jerk Helicopter Pilots of San Francisco: Flying Under the Golden Gate Bridge for Fun

Tuesday, September 27th, 2011

I don’t know, the FAA doesn’t seem to mind this kind of hot dogging so who am I to complain:

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Here’s what it looks like from inside.

Sometimes these birds land in the water due to engine trouble and then the Coast Guard tows them to shore.

It’s a living, I s’pose…