Monday, April 30, 2012

Air France 447

Someone posted a link to an article on the Air France 447 crash over the Atlantic a couple years ago and it is both fascinating and terrifying reading. I’m uneasy when I fly. Not scare, but uneasy, and I’m definitely a little more concerned after reading this. In fact, my stomach was clenching while reading it.

It does seem like there is some problem with the design, to me. The fact that a stick can slip back into neutral, and hold the previous command, while convenient, isn’t something I like. I hate the shifter sticks on modern cars that would require me to look to find the gear. I like having my manual shifter that I can feel what gear I’m in by the placement. I’d have to defer to pilots that have flown both of these types of aircraft.

A horrible crash, and for sure we can’t predict how people will react in crisis. I do know that we have to give people a chance to learn. Without that, we’ll never get better pilots, or new ones. I do hope that the threat of lawsuits doesn’t prevent Air France, Airbus, or even Boeing, from going forward with better designs and ideas that make things work better. Not just sound better.

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