SAFETY SPOT INDEX 2013
January : A Cast of Thousands – A general discussion about the difference between learning, practicing and rehearsing; Items covered:
Titan T-51 Mustang - Wheels-up Landing. Exhaust Failure.
Jodel (all types) – Landing Lamp Failure – Polycarbonate-vs- Perspex.
February : Winter Wonderland – Initial discussion looking at the effects of snow on the visual senses; Items covered:
Vans RV-7 – Loss of Power – Carburettor icing and carburettor heater efficiencies.
Tipsy Trainer – Crankshaft Failure. Pitting Corrosion, use of multi-grade oil.
March : Piper Taildraggers – Cracking and corrosion demand tail structure inspection; Gull Wing Doors – A cluster of door openings in flight; Items covered:
Piper SAIB CE-13-14 – Advice from the US FAA about the need to carry out regular inspections in the tail area of Piper (and similar) types.
Wassmer WA52 – Door Opening In Flight – Emergency Landing at Middle Wallop.
Europa – Door Failure In Flight – Featuring failures of doors in Pioneer 400, Rutan Long- Ez and Zenair 601 aircraft and a Fatality in a Magni M42C Orion Autogiro.
April : Hidden Depths – A discussion as to the reasons why it is essential to build-in ‘deep’ inspections into your Tailored Maintenance Schedule. Items Covered:
CZAW – SportCruiser Nose Undercarriage Failure – Discussion about why LAA Engineering has withdrawn this component from service.
Auster J1 Autocrat – Serious Tailplane Corrosion.
Midget Mustang – Hidden Wing-Mounting cracks.
Zenair 601XL – Noseleg Attachment Cracks (poor quality build?).
May : ‘On Top Form’ – The arrival of the flying season means that it’s time for thorough checks …. and this includes the currency and health of the pilot. Items Covered:
CZAW SportCruiser – Nose Leg Spindles – Update, including replacement availability.
Pitts Special S1-S – Aileron Damage on Landing – Exploring the need for thorough checks after any unusual impact incident.
Luscombe 8E – Damage after Ground Loop – Serious structure damage found during rebuild that wasn’t spotted after a landing incident.
June : ‘Hot and Bothered’ – Whether it’s training to take on an airfield fire, practising an engine failure or caring for your aircraft … you can never be too careful. Items Covered:
Aeronca 7AC Champion – Propeller Failure – Exploring the reaction of the pilot when confronted with a sudden (and frightening) emergency.
Avions/Fairey Tipsy Nipper – Wing Failure – Discussing the recent discovery that the failure of a Tipsy Nipper wing was the result of a bird strike.
July : ‘Tailored Maintenance’ – Some aircraft are more complex than others; perhaps this is obvious but it’s important to consider this and the flying life of your aircraft when creating your Tailored Maintenance Programme. Other items covered:
Aeronca Champion – Propeller Failure (update) – A close look at the evidence in the failed components lead to a re-think about the initial cause of the failure.
Reality Escapade – Fuel Leak – A discussion about the need to keep a close eye on all components in the fuel system, regardless of their age.
Streak Shadow – Failed Fin Post – Finding this nasty crack emphasises the need for thorough pre-flight inspections.
August 2013 : ‘Learning day by day’ – Discussing the safety implications of not tackling known maintenance issues promptly. Other items covered:
RPM 2000 Autogiro, Warp Drive Propeller Hub Failure – Discussing the metallurgical similarities between a recent failure of this propeller hub and a similar event last year.
Pioneer 200M - Longitudinal Trim Failure - A failure of the pitch trim drive rod led to control difficulties for the pilot.
Flight Testing - “To test or not to test”? – An explanation about the LAA position with regard to flight testing after changes within the CAA C. of A. Flight Test rules.
September 2013 : Not written
October 2013 : ‘Following Advice’? – Discussing the technical responsibilities of the owner of an aircraft operating under an LAA administered Permit to Fly. Other items covered:
Jodel D150 Mascaret, Landing Lamp Failure – Airworthiness Information Leaflet and a Safety Alert Published.
Skullcap Spinners – Discussing the various reasons why there appears to be a high level of failure in this simple component.
Pioneer 200, Elevator Trim Rod – Further discussion, Airworthiness Information Leaflet and Safety Alert published.
Tailplane Attachment Inspection – Discussing the role of the De Havilland Support Ltd.’s Technical News Sheets within the LAA’s general
maintenance regime & a close look at the reasons for the latest TNS requiring checks to the tailplane attachment (DHSL TNS 209).
EV 97 Eurostar, Ignition Switch Failure - The dangers of a live ignition circuit and ‘How (not to) to Gurgle’ the Rotax nines.
Zenair CH601 UL, Woodcomp Varia Propeller Failure – Discussing a recent failure of a propeller blade which led to a forced landing.
November 2013: 'Following Advice' – Introducing LAA Airworthiness Alerts and offering a limited ‘route map’ for the LAA website; other items covered:
Rotax 912 & 914 Engines, Checking the Crankshaft Journal – Reviewing the latest Rotax Service Bulletin requiring regular checks to the crankshaft on some engines.
Vans RV-7 – Windscreen Failure – Looking at stress failures in polymeric materials.
Piper PA-17 Vagabond, Corrosion in rear fuselage – Discussing the limits of X-Ray technology after serious corrosion was missed during a radiographic NDT check.
December 2013 : ‘A Good Pre-Flight Routine?’ – Discussing the value of switching out of ‘Automatic’ when carrying out a routine pre-flight inspection.
Denney Kitfox II – Undercarriage Failure – Investigating the possible cause of a recent bungee failure and emphasising the need for thorough pre-flight inspections.
Pitts S-1S – Tailwheel Control Failure (1) – A ground loop after landing sent this aircraft into a fence; discussing the set-up of a tailwheel steerage system.
Pitts S-1S – Tailwheel Control Failure (2) – In this ground loop incident a main undercarriage leg collapsed.
CZAW SportCruiser – EFATO – This engine failure after take-off at Leeds/Bradford was found to have been caused by a fuel system over-pressure; the investigating LAA engineer established that a recent fuel pump change was the probable cause.