Exercise 2 - Preparation for Flight

Preparatory Instruction


To introduce the student to the preparation necessary before commencing a flight.


Stress the fundamental part that proper preparation for flight plays in flight safety. Explain that a high percentage of aircraft accidents and incidents are due to poor preparation and inadequate planning.

Teaching Points

  1. Explain that the sequent of events leading up to the take-off and departure can be conveniently considered in 3 phases:
    1. Flight planning.
    2. Checking of aircraft documents.
    3. Inspection of the aircraft and completion of checks and procedures.
  2. Point out that during the initial stages of training, the flight planning phase will be covered by the instructor during Pre-Flight Briefings. As the course progresses, the student will be required to take an increasing part in all the aspects of preparation for flight.
  3. Explain that it is the pilot-in-command's responsibility to ensure that an aircraft is safe and fit in all respects for the intended flight.
  4. Explain the need to wear or have on board the aircraft, proper survival equipment, clothing and footwear for existing or anticipated weather conditions in case of an unscheduled landing away from base.
  5. Explain the procedures for the student to follow, should he discover a snag or unserviecability in the training aircraft, during the inspection or pre-take-off phase. Stress that he should not fly the aircraft if he has any doubts about it's airworthiness.
  6. Documents - show the student all the documents required by Air Regulations to be on board the aircraft in flight. Explain the significance of each and its bearing on airworthiness.
  7. Inspections and Checks
    1. While walking to the helicopter, point out that the student should always note:
      1. W/V; and
      2. the presence of any aircraft or obstacle that might affect starting the rotors or the departure procedure.
    2. Demonstrate the external inspection and the checks and procedures to be carried out prior to take-off, as appropriate to type.
  8. Demonstrate shut-down checks and procedures appropriate to type.

Tips for Instructors

  1. Relate this exercise to the student's background. For example, paragraphs 1 - 4 of the Presentation are primarily for the benefit of ab-initio students rather than those with previous flying experience.
  2. Although treated here as a separate exercise, it may be more convenient to combine the introduction to Preparation for Flight with Exercise 3. (See Lesson Plan No. 2).
  3. Student practice of the external inspection, and pre-take-off procedures, should be carefully monitored until reliable proficiency is attained, and checked at regular intervals thereafter.