Dear All,

The Return to Two Seater Instructing

Following the recent government relaxation of the Covid-19 Restrictions, subsequently confirmed by the Dept. of Transport (DfT), we will be able to recommence Instructional Flying in CGC Two Seaters from Saturday 4th July.

There are a number of conditions around how we go about this, revolving around items such as: Face Coverings, Social Distancing, Temperature checks etc. These are noted further down in this mail.

We are restarting Instructional flying with reduced capacity, a few factors have led us to do this: We are operating with a reduced Pool of Instructors – those who feel that the personal risk of Instructional flying is sufficiently low enough to allow them to do so. Instructors, student pilots and ground crew are also all ‘rusty’ and less than fully current. Taking these factors into account it seems sensible to start off slowly and ramp up to our full capability in the weeks ahead.

With reduced Instructor availability, we have decided to immediately bring Stephen Rae back online as one of our Professional Instructors. Stephen is considerably more current than a number of our instructors (me included) as whilst we were suffering from UK winter conditions and a waterlogged airfield, Stephen was flying out in Australia. Unfortunately we can’t guarantee that Stephen has brought the good conditions back with him to the UK. Stephen will be instructing most weekends during the season as well as midweek, and is staying on site in one of the newly refurbished bedrooms.

You can book two seater instruction online on our booking system at https://members.camgliding.uk/ops/twoseatbookings.aspx

Changes to the Pilot Categorisation Requirements

With access to ‘real’ aircraft it seems sensible to modify what we have been doing regarding the promotion of members from one pilot category to another. Effectively where pilots were originally required to demonstrate observed take-offs for a particular launch method: Aerotow or Winch, these will now also entail one or more check rides in a two seater prior to their first solo flight. The modified Pilot Categorisations are listed below – Changes to previously published conditions are underlined.

  • Green: Pilots who are current and / or have the experience to allow them to fly solo immediately with minimal intervention.
  • Yellow: Members whose experience allows them to fly solo after receiving full ‘Refresher’ type briefing from a Senior Instructor followed by an observed take-off (for the particular Launch Method) and subsequent landing. Pilots who would have previously progressed to ‘Yellow’ from the ‘Orange’ Category without a check flight will be required to take one or more check flights with an Instructor before attempting the observed flight.
  • Orange: Pilots requiring ‘checks’ in the Simulator and the full ‘Refresher’ type briefing from a Senior Instructor followed one or more check flights with an Instructor in a CGC Two Seater before being promoted to ‘Yellow’
  • Red: Pilots who are either early solo or are yet to go solo require training flights in a two-seater aircraft. With Instructional flights now being possible these pilots will be able to continue their training with CGC instructors in either ‘real’ aircraft or in the Simulator.

These conditions will apply from Saturday 4th July.

Bio -Security

The Bio-Security measures that have been put in place (see mail to CGC-News sent 19th June) will continue with a few additions / modifications …

  • Instructors and Student pilots will be expected to wear face coverings whilst within the confines of a two seater aircraft cockpit. Consideration should be given to the possibility that this may cause glasses to mist up during the flight and measures taken to avoid this becoming a problem: ensure adequate ventilation, clean lens, adjust face coverings etc. It is important to understand that wearing of face coverings must not interfere with the operation of the aircraft and whilst they should normally keep their face covering in place they should be this only if it is safe to do so.
  • Cockpits of gliders should be cleaned down before and after each pilot change over, with the rear cockpit being  similarly cleaned when Instructors change and / or finish for the day. This should include cleaning of all possible touchpoints, controls, canopy mechanisms, parachute buckles (but not fabric elements), instrument panel and radio controls. A new piece of Clingfilm should be used to cover the Radio Microphone – this should be removed by the departing pilot when cleaning down the cockpit after use.
  • Where possible parachutes should only be used be a single pilot on any one day. At the end of the day, buckles should be cleaned and the parachutes returned to their storage location as normal. And not used until the following day.
  • As during the normal operation, aircraft will likely be handled by multiple individuals, the cockpit and all touch points should be cleared at the end of the day: wingtips, the fuselage behind the cockpit before it is returned the hangar.
  • Prior to flying a two seater aircraft, and preferably as soon as possible after arriving on site, members will have their temperature checked using an Infrared forehead thermometer.  Anyone with a recorded temperature of 37.8 °C or above will not be able to fly and will be asked to return home immediately.

Health Status Checklist

EASA has issued COVID19 guidance for GA flying and all CGC members will be asked to check if any of the statements are true. If so, that member should not fly and should return home immediately.

GA crew members, passengers or other participants should make the following Health Status Check prior to every flight.

If any of these statements apply to you, you should not fly:-

  • I have been diagnosed with COVID-19 at any time during the 14 days prior to my flight
  • I have had COVID-19 symptoms (fever, newly developed cough, loss of taste or smell, shortness of breath) at any time during the 8 days prior to my flight
  • I have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19 (face-to-face contact within 1 meter for more than 15 minutes or direct physical contact) in the 14 days prior to my flight
  • I am required by local or national regulations to be in quarantine for reasons related to COVID-19 for a period that includes the date of the flight

We will continue to monitor the situation, and make the necessary changes to ensure that we maintain a safe and enjoyable return to flying.

Kind regards,

Colin Cownden

CFI, Cambridge Gliding Centre