"If you need an accident to recognize a flight safety problem, you are part of the problem" Aviation Axioms of Oliver Ostrich

Rack 'em, stack 'em & pack 'em

You can't depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.- Mark Twain

Tell-Tale Docs

Our Discoveries  - Your Insights

John Q Citizen. This is your life.

"The documented facts by official governmental aviation safety agencies, and industry, that will provide you with a totally objective 'education' of 

what you don't know about aviation safety, yet have the right to know. "

IASA Chairman (Lyn Romano)

These documents are stand-alone testimony to the inability [of the industry and regulator] to admit to and cope with endemic aviation safety problems.  Read and judge for yourself. A mini-history or concise summary will accompany each.

 Aerial Progress: "Greasy side down and pointy end forward"  Special Maintenance / Safety Considerations

The same incident: with and without vital detail

 "The planes climbed high into the night, to light the sacrificial light, I saw Satan laughing with delight, the day the music died" Don McClean, American Pie  FAA Policy on Use of the Aircraft Materials Fire Test Handbook FAA Policy on Use of the Aircraft Materials Fire Test Handbook.
 "The planes climbed high into the night, to light the sacrificial light, I saw Satan laughing with delight, the day the music died" Don McClean, American Pie   The IWG's Executive Summary Herewith the Executive Summary. Is it a collection of Homespun Platitudes or a Prescription for Affirmative Action on Wiring? Your call.  See the Formation of IWG (below)
 Whom the gods would destroy they first blind with hubris.   The NTSB's Recommendations to the FAA on Wiring The NTSB, as a result of findings, make recommendations to the FAA for regulatory action to rectify identified safety-related deficiencies. Does the FAA always adopt the suggested course? Where wiring, fire and smoke are concerned you would think so, wouldn't you?
 He who controls the past, controls the future. He who controls the future, controls the past.George Orwell    IASA STUDY OF 270 


Because of the incomplete nature of their incident data-bases, which the FAA and NTSB admits, you have to trawl and sieve to surface all the wiring incidents. Even so it is continually being added to as more incidents are uncovered (and occur). If you know of one that's not here in this searchable file, drop us an email.
 Respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth. Albert Einstein   An FAA Policy on Resetting CB's (Aug 2000) This should take care of one important aspect of aviation electrical safety. Note well that the consensus on this is world-wide and reflects IASA's long-term preaching on the subject. It also answers the Feb 00 ALPA letter's concerns. But it's like telling the child not to play with matches. The child still has the match-box.
 Meetings are indispensable when you don't want to do anything.- J. K. Galbraith   The Formation of  IWG  (Jun 2000) Under the chairmanship of the ATA (Air Transport Association), ATSRAC (Aging Transport Systems Rulemaking Advisory Committee) had gone about as far as it could go. Its limitations were becoming evident. IASA appeals to the Executive Office of the President gave rise to a new, differently composed,  wiring oversight committee called IWG  (The Wire Systems Safety Interagency Working Group). It is designed (and was always destined) to take wiring insulation concerns in markedly different directions.
 Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it's faced.- James Baldwin   The Undercurrents in Wire

               -A chronology of Defective Oversight

This is the story of bad aircraft wiring insulation in the late 20th Century. As plagues go, it hasnít killed many. However it is a plague because it is everywhere, it wonít go away, much of it is dangerous and aging ungracefully. You cannot innoculate against it and you cannot isolate it like leprosy, but you can preach against ignoring its predations. Ed Block is one of the pre-eminent preachers and this is his story. It is actually also the story of a denial process that continues to this day.
 There is nothing quite so good as burial at sea. It is simple, tidy, and not very incriminating. -Alfred Hitchcock   The Long Beach MD-11 Bulletin About 10 months after SR111 the Boeing paralysis was broken by the release of a Supplementary Flight Ops Bulletin purporting to give electrical fire and smoke guidance to MD-11 aircrews. It admitted that a properly done drill would take up to 30 minutes to complete and that they'd decided not to issue amended guidance:

"Boeing is loathe to yet formally publish or actually propose this alternative course of action as it would make matters very complex for crews in deciding which is the most appropriate course."   Yes, keep it dead simple.

 Success is a Journey, Not a Destination   Advisory Circular 25-16 What has always been known about arc-tracking, aromatic polyimides, electrical failure and fire; and the other many hazards of deficient aircraft wiring in a casually informal circular. It should have become the bible of aviation wiring insulation. This Chapter is GENESIS.
 There is strong shadow where there is much light.- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe   Comments on the Advisory Circular If you were wondering about the relevance of the above document, here are some points to ponder.
 Only the wisest and the stupidest of men never change.- Confucius   RAF Kapton The FAA doesn't "know" about wire - but the USN does, and the RAAF, RAF, Canadian Armed Forces and now NASA's Shuttles have been shuttle-cocked. Wire is apparently going to great lengths to gain notoriety.
 Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist ought to have his head examined.  Oscar Wilde   Is Boeing Aware? To be a leader you have to demonstrate leadership qualities such as honesty, integrity, credibility, veracity, candidness, "quality first" specifications .....all quite commercially compatible virtues.

If, however, you hide safety concerns in internal memo's classified Commercial-in-Confidence or Proprietary Secret, you have something to hide. You've then given up any aspirations toward leadership and you're then just one of the "MADDING CROWD" - no matter what your stature or size.

 I used to be indecisive, now I'm not sure   Trapped in the Middle The FAA has a license to support the industry that it must also regulate. This dichotomy has led to an unwholesome alliance with the Air Transport Association (ATA) which is the Washington Lobby for the major US Airlines. How can it successfully walk any middle path? Is there a bias?
 It is better to have a permanent income than to be fascinating.- Oscar Wilde   The Wojnar Letter Ronald Wojnar still works for the FAA. He's in the big league. Back in 1992 he wrote a very interesting letter. He knew what he was talking about then. How about now?
 He lived his life to the end.   The Cahill Documents

Omissions and Deletions to FAA / NTSB Databases

A Fraudulent Contrivance?

 I marvel at the strength of human weakness   The Blake-Cahill Documents

Development and Growth of Inaccessible Aircraft Fires under Inflight Airflow Conditions

 If you're not on the edge, then you're taking up too much space   AD Cancelling the MD-11 STC for the IFEN

Commonsense prevailed and the illegality and hazardous nature of the MD-11 Inflight Enertainment System is eventually acknowledged by a mandatory Airworthiness Directive prohibiting the IFEN's reconnection. Another "own goal" for the Regulator.

 IF IT COULD HAVE BEEN PREVENTED, IT'S NO ACCIDENT. John Sampson   The McSweeny Testimony of Sept 99

Quote: "The team also believed that a systematic process to identify and address potential catastrophic failures caused by electrical faults of wiring systems was needed."  But what specifically was it that he forgot to mention here? It wasn't as if it was irrelevant and hadn't been brought to their attention repeatedly. See the next panel.

 Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow, it only saps today of its joy.- Leo Buscaglia   A Ground-Breaking Letter (Feb 00)

ALPA helps out. ATSRAC identifies a problem that has been ignored, yet may well be behind many of the catastrophic outcomes. The solution is simple and logical but the question remains: Can the FAA ever be pro-active? Or will it simply be contrary? Re-read the panel above - and predict the outcome.

Reserved for Your Contribution

   The FACTS are known but...........It takes evidence to make the case

Adventure is worthwhile in itself. - Amelia Earhart

I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work. - Thomas Edison

Cinncinnati pops to mind if a CB pops. Mike Murphy

I've sold more books on physics than Madonna has on sex.- Stephen Hawking


Is sloppiness in speech caused by ignorance or apathy? I don't know and I don't care.- William Safire