There are a lot of things you do (or don’t do) that can put your flight at risk. Here are 9 of the most common ones that cause accidents:
1) You skip your weather briefing
Weather related accidents account for over 25% of all general aviation fatalities. It’s worth spending a few minutes to get a briefing online or over the phone. Not to mention it’s required by the FARs.
2) You forget to check NOTAMs and TFRs
NOTAMs, and especially TFRs, are more common than they’ve ever been. Check them, or risk getting escorted by an F-16. (we have an app to help you read them too!)
3) You don’t calculate your weight and balance
Just because your airplane can take off overweight, doesn’t mean you should. Maximum gross weight is a structural limitation, and there have been countless in-flight breakups that resulted from overweight aircraft encountering turbulence.
4) You forget to calculate your performance
This video pretty much sums it up.
5) You don’t plan your fuel
According to the NTSB, fuel starvation is the #7 reason for fatal accidents. .
6) You don’t plan a diversion airport
Weather can change in a hurry no matter where you are. Make sure you have enough gas, and a reasonable alternate, before you go.