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MY 2 CENTS


into comfortable routines that do not take advantage of lessons learned by others. Poor training can be even worse than no training if you are being taught the wrong things. In either case, the pilot becomes too embarrassed to expose him or herself to further training. This is an easy trap to fall into when flying as an amateur because there is little or no oversight, outside of a biennial review. When exposed to SOPs, these pilots are likely to react negatively: ‘I’ve been doing fine without them!’”


The article argues that an expert’s path to deviance is different from a new pilot, because the expert should know better.


“With each pilot there are likely to be a combination of issues leading toward the normalization of deviance,” the article concludes. “These issues form a disease, which impacts the pilot’s professional health.”


Pilots risk professional stagnation when they feel they have “seen and done that,” which can serve to weaken motivation to revisit the books or keep up with the latest techniques and procedures. The best


way to cure pilot stagnation is to always have a goal in sight. Even those pilots without the next rating or helicopter type on the horizon can motivate themselves to mentor the next generation of pilots.


With experience comes confidence, but that may often lead to overconfidence. It’s important to realize that even the best pilots make mistakes, a fact supported in accident investigations. Those pilots did not set out to crash their aircraft, but they were met by circumstances that you may one day have to confront. It’s important to realize that your actions set the tone for others. Less experienced pilots may be tempted to mimic your actions without the same base of experience to fall back on.


An individual is unlikely to realize he


or she has been infected by deviant, unsafe behavior because it has become normal. So ask yourself, “Is there any normalization of deviance occurring in my organization?”


If so, identify it, and then cut it out for the deadly cancer it is.


Randy Mains is an author, public speaker, and AMRM consultant who works in the helicopter industry after a long career of aviation adventure. He currently serves as chief CRM/AMRM instructor for Oregon Aero.


He may be contacted at: info@randymains.com


rotorcraftpro.com


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