Several decades ago FAA removed spin training from the private pilot curriculum. Instead of teaching backs, FAA focused on stall recognition and prevention. This paradox favors the theory that without the stall there would be no rotation. The problem is that people continue to die as a result of crush-related accidents.
Today, only pilot instructor candidates are required to do spins. Surprisingly, the majority CFIToday, they are only required to “sign up” for a spin – an endorsement in the logbook – and often lack the thorough academic or flight training required to learn to spin properly.
Industry professionals engage in training for disorder prevention and recovery (UPRT) programs recognize that a chronic risk in spin training is a poorly trained instructor.
Aviation solutions General director Paul “BJ” Ransbury said that “teaching spin as it is done today usually misses out on basic knowledge, skills and awareness development, going from a docile coordinated stall straight to a fully developed spin without comprehensively addressing the stall/spin escalation stages in between those extremes. For example, the dangerous nature of cross stalling when skidding is often forgotten.”
The stats back Ransbury up. According to an AOPA A study by the Aviation Safety Foundation (Nala Report) shows that cross-controlled stalls/turns are responsible for nearly 60 percent of all approach and landing accidents and are almost always fatal.
Additionally, only aerobatic or service aircraft approved for intentional spins are certified to recover from severe spins of more than one revolution. This complicates the task of conducting reliable spin training in today’s flight training environment.
“This is a critical moment,” Ransbury said. “If a pilot gets into an advanced spin that exceeds the standard for a normal category aircraft by one revolution, then he is a test pilot – there is no guarantee of recovery. The one-turn reserve in normal-category aircraft is mainly built in for a delayed response to stall recovery, not for a deliberate one-turn spin.’
Part of the problem is how pilots are trained today. Traditional preparation for a dump involves slowly decelerating the airspeed with ever-increasing nose lift and angle of attack toward the dump. Most pilots never experience nose down dump.
A cross stall—a skid or skid—often involves nose down in an uncoordinated turn that has significantly different characteristics after the stall. According to Ransbury, “the glide is resistant to rotation, tends to maintain an energetic state, resulting in increased descent speed, and when stalling occurs, the glide tends to roll into a vertical position—a favorable response to support recovery.
“Skidding is a nasty beast; it tends to de-energize, stall/spin, and when it stalls it rolls towards the inverted side, with the pilot’s natural reactions further worsening the flight conditions in the direction of the developed spin.’
This scenario plays out over and over again in cross-steer/steer accidents involving a stall, where the pilot tries to use the inboard rudder to correct the “race” from the wind to the base or from the base to the final turn. It’s a killer.
Accident data supports changes in how pilots are trained—or not trained—to understand, recognize, avoid, and recover from a scenario involving an unintended stall and spin. There are too many fatal traffic accidents near the ground.
Because of the low altitude, early stall recognition and avoidance may be the only way to survive a stall encounter. In particular, cross-steering control in a turn can result in insufficient time and/or height to avoid the ground even with a perfectly executed recovery.
The identified dangers of changing the curriculum for elementary students are personnel CFIwhich have not been properly trained for spin training, and a fleet of training aircraft that provide a small margin of safety when the spin exceeds one full revolution. The risk of combining today’s instructor pilots and training aircraft to train future generations of pilots would be catastrophic – the number of stall/turn training accidents would be unacceptable.
APSRansbury believes that “a complete training program for spin awareness, prevention and recovery would involve several hours of training and at least two flights. The flights will meet regulatory requirements while comprehensively training intervention techniques throughout a stall escalation, inadvertent slow flight, stall approach, leveling and turning, sliding, stalling, initial spins, single-turn spins and full spins in an approved training aircraft for rotation.
“The goal should be to increase pilot awareness of the threat and the knowledge, skills and discipline to stop the development of the failure/condition as early as possible in the escalation process. Moreover, UPRT is important – and by design should combine comprehensive stall/spin awareness and recovery training – but there is also a lack of competent instructors to teach it as intended ICAO doc. 10011.”
Ransbury said that “one of two things could happen if FAA should have required spin teaching for elementary students: FAA insert themselves and require much more reliable rotation training CFI candidates, or there may be an increase in the number of fatal accidents during flight training from the very beginning.’
Presumably, current spin training often fails to address the reality of most stall/spin accidents. One solution would be to avoid the decades-old “back vs. back” argument and adopt a new “back training differently” approach. This will involve training pilots with highly trained instructors in aircraft (at altitude) that provide sufficient safety margin to simulate scenarios that have proven lethal in aviation, such as cross-steer control. final
https://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news/blogs/ainsight-spin-cycle AINsight: spin cycle | General Aviation: International Aviation News