2021 TO DATE:

Happy upcoming holidays to everyone; I hope Santa Claus is good to you, your family, and your airplane!   Below please find the latest NTSB data on fatal crashes here in Arizona.  So far, up thru the end of November of this year, the record still stands at 7 fatal accidents, with 8 fatalities (6 pilots and 2 passengers), with 2 accidents listed as info not available, as listed below from the NTSB web site. A summary of the fatal accidents will be compiled for the year and published in the January issue, and with any luck, the NTSB might have more information for us on the two accidents currently listed as N/A.   I am not sure of its accuracy…

gaarms december 2021 natsb data fatal crashes arizona




Fred’s Perspective –

gaarms december with 2021 drawing to a close

With 2021 drawing to a close shortly, I sit here reflecting on the past year’s events and activities. Hmmm, doing a quick estimate, I reckon this is somewhere around my one hundredth GAARMS article.  Just looking back at 2021, and despite the Covid pandemic, I have done 4 weekend Mooney Aircraft and Pilots Association Safety Foundation clinics all across the country and participated in and did presentations at two different conferences. So far this year I have sent 8 students for check rides, did 13 BFR’s, 8 IPC’s and 8 C172 checkouts, flown 3 Flights for Life missions and 5 food delivery runs to the Navajo nation.  In my spare time I did over 500 hours of flight instruction up here in Flagstaff at the Wiseman flight School plus two 40-hour ground schools.  And somehow, I still found some time to actually fly my own airplane, although not nearly as much as I would like to.

Scary as it may sound, at a young and spry age of 78 with almost 50 years of flying, retirement keeps creeping into many conversations.  My mind is still sharp – instructing does that – and my quest for knowledge is still there (I read A LOT!!).  But this old body is having more aches and pains as time marches on!  I joke a lot about the problem of climbing into and out of my Corvette – especially with the roof still on – but I manage, and thusly I keep the roof off a LOT!  I guess I am a throwback to the old days, me and my Corvette toolin’ across Route 66 (actually through town on Route 66).  I love my Corvette, but I gotta admit, it don’t do good in the snow here in Flag. But so what?  I drive it all through the winter, albeit carefully, bundled up in my heavy flight jacket and my Top Gun sunglasses with the top still down.  I like the fresh air, the sun and the wind blowing in what hair I got left!!  Some people look at me like I’m nuts, but that freedom is great. 

gaarms december 2021 tough duty but someone has to do it cheers

However, as a concession to the other, smarter and better-lookin’ half (AKA the Boss), I do put the top on for road trips, like when we went to the NWS’s  Southwest Aviation Weather Symposium over in Albuquerque in November.  340 miles at 80 – 85 MPH in an open cockpit Vette is very noisy; the wind noise makes it very hard to hear the 60’s radio channel.   So, with top on, A/C on and the 60’s music playing, it is quite a comfy ride and quite a good road car.  Now you might be thinking “Why did he not fly over to ABQ?”, and that is a valid question.  Cost, my dear Friends, Cost!  Since we had to pay our own expenses to attend and participate in the conference, one cost saving effort was to drive - $75.00 on gas for the Vette vs $375.00 for the airplane, and then either cab or rental car expenses there were the deciding factors.  In case you haven’t noticed, Avgas (and everything else) is really getting expensive!!!  Go check out the fuel prices on…

gaarms december 2021 not a wiseman flghtschool airplane

On a different note, there seems to be a lot of interest in learning to fly.  Our flight school is really busy, and we even brought on another flight instructor, one I trained all the way from his first day as a student pilot up through his CFII.  He is a welcome and great addition.  Our workload is high, with our two C172’s on the go every day, and we even have a program with Northern Arizona University’s USAF ROTC program. The US Air Force is giving the ROTC pilot candidates scholarships for up to 20 hours instruction to enhance their background prior to being selected for pilot training. There are many young women in that program, and when they are included in our overall count of student pilots, we are proud to say we have a very large percentage of female student pilots. 

As a sign that things are starting to normalize, albeit slowly, I am also starting up our quarterly safety programs here in Flagstaff, with a winter safety program on Saturday, DEC. 11 here at Wiseman Aviation.  Registration is via FAASAFETY.GOV, or you can simply show up.  However, if you do decide to fly up to Flag, be doubly sure to check weather.  Remember, December is winter-time, and the weather up here can be significantly different from the Phoenix area!!!  It does snow, and temperatures have been known to go down to ZERO overnight!!

And remember,dress warm!  (note picture!)

gaarms december 2021 overkill not even close


Safety Programs

There are NOT a lot of FAASTeam safety programs on the schedule over the next couple of months all around the state, so go to WWW.FAASAFETY.GOV , click on “Seminars” and check them out for any Webinars you might be interested in. You might find one that really is right up your alley!! Should you desire a particular safety or educational program at your local airport or pilot meeting in the future (post COVID-19), like the BasicMed program or our “Winter Wonderland” snow season special, simply contact me directly at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or call me at 410-206-3753. The Arizona Pilots Association provides the safety programs at no charge. We can also help you organize a program of your choice, and we can recommend programs that your pilot community might really like.

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