November 1999 Issue

Ditch Proofing

Some fateful day, a water landing may be unavoidable. SST can train you to survive the experience.

A fighter jock can be forgiven for sniffing at the shallow inadequacies of general aviation pilot training: It takes but 60 to 80 hours to graduate from witless passenger to certified aviator, the briefest flash of time that necessarily ignores much of what a pilot should—or would like—to know.

One aspect of training that gets short shrift—okay, no shrift—is crash survival, specifically ditching. Military aviators endure a grueling, soggy dose of this training, both in dunker tanks and occasionally in live water exercises. GA pilots, on the other hand, are referred to section 6 of the Aeronautical Information Manual and told to have a nice day.

Recognizing this, several companies o...

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