The House of Rapp

Trust Us — We’re Professionals

Posted by in Opinion Leaders, Safety

The FAA has seen fit to ban all personal electronic devices from the airline cockpit, as well as strongly recommend a similar prohibition for Part 135 and 91K operators. As one who flies a fair number of overnight, long-haul flights, I think this is a bad idea and one which will hurt rather than help flight safety.

The Hacked Airplane

Posted by in Opinion Leaders, Technology

For better or worse, the relentless march of technology means we’re more connected than ever, in more places than ever. For the most part that’s good. We benefit from improving communication, situational awareness, and reduced pilot workload in the cockpit. But there’s a dark side to digital connectivity, and in an era of internet-connected refrigerators, toilets, and a/c systems, I predict it’s only a matter of time before we start to see it in our airborne lives.

The Contract Pilot

Posted by in Gulfstream, Opinion Leaders

As much as one may love flying, it can be a tough career choice. Many pilots struggle through the food chain only to end up discouraged, if not downright hating their job. We’re all aware of the reasons: low pay, long days, little respect, too much time away from home, difficult working conditions, commuting, regulatory hassles, bankruptcies, furloughs, and ruinously expensive training. Quite a list, isn’t it?

On the other hand, life is often what we make of it. From bush flying to firefighting, there are many different gigs out there for those willing to take Frost’s road-less-traveled. For the past three years, for example, I’ve been flying as a “contract pilot” and truly enjoy it.

The Journey of a Thousand Miles

Posted by in Opinion Leaders, Politics

AOPA and EAA suggested a slight expansion of the sport pilot medical exemption. Congress got a hold of that idea and took it to the next level, and is considering eliminating formal medical certification for most private pilots. Is this too good to be true? How did we get here? And what does it mean for GA’s future?

A True Story: Landing at the Wrong Airport

Posted by in Opinion Leaders, Safety

The news outlets have been buzzing about a recent spate of wrong-airport landings. Since those have been well-covered by the media, let me tell you about a very memorable wrong-airport landing I personally witnessed at a most unlikely location.