GOODFELLOW AIR FORCE BASE, Texas --
Honestly, have you ever had one of those days that were really, really bad? You figured you could park the plane with no problems on your own, but for some reason you forgot that the prop was still turning. As always, you were more concerned about ensuring you had just enough room on the driver’s side to ensure your door didn’t ding their door. So you just pulled ‘er on in at will. Result, “slice and dice.” Then after dealing with all the insurance agents, lawyers, the other plane owner and hangar manager, you actually have to drive home thinking about that impending lawsuit. Ask yourself, where would your mind be? Ask yourself, where is he going with this?
Well, your mind should be on defensive driving! Did you know that Air Force traffic fatalities hit a ten year low in fiscal year 2016? You can see in the graph above from the Air Force Occupational Safety SharePoint site: Air Force Traffic Safety and Outreach, that the Air Force is making progress, but hey, the really somber part about it is that 23 Airmen still lost their lives. One is too many!
So here’s the pitch - use driving skills to defend yourself against possible crashes caused by bad drivers, drivers texting, talking on phone, taking selfies, reading and eating while operating, drunk drivers, road hazards and bad weather. Keep eyes forward and constantly moving, to spot moving or stationary hazards. Once identified act immediately.
Some handy-dandy defensive driver tips:
- Always plan in advance for the unexpected.
- Stay in control of your speed.
- Be ready to react.
- Don’t think that the other driver can read your mind, always signal intent.
- Show respect to other drivers.
- Be aware of the road conditions including weather and surface.
- Remain alert, avoid distractions.
See bad driver information in the “main pitch” above.
So heed the pitch and give props to defensive driving because it can keep you safe. Airplane prop, pitch - get it?
17 TRW Wing Safety – “Stay safe my friends”