For you pilots out there, how is your checklist discipline before each flight?
I know in my own experience, my instructor was absolutely relentless on that topic. Every item had to be inspected once, read aloud as I checked it off the list, and thoroughly examined a second time to make sure all was in perfect working order. I always thought he was a little over zealous, especially when checking behind the prop of our Cessna 172 for bird nests.
A bird’s nest? Seriously? In a plane that had flown only hours before? You’ve got to be $h!tting me, right?! Well, he wasn’t, and sure enough it wasn’t long before I detected signs of avian activity underneath the cowling. Thought I never saw a completed nest, I did often find grass, twigs, and other building materials–any of which could have caused me problems during flight.
So tonight we bring you another From The Cockpit clip, and I cannot help but shake my head in wonder at how this young pilot, Romain Jantot, managed to miss a feline stow-away inside the wing of his microlight aircraft.
I’m not kidding, meow!
But miss it he did and when the aircraft was several hundred feet off the ground, the cat made its way back toward the cockpit, stopping just short of tumbling out. The pilot’s face when he notices the animal is just priceless. Thankfully, he was able to land the aircraft without incident and the cat came out unharmed once the aircraft was stopped.
Lesson here? Check and recheck every nook and cranny in your aircraft prior to engine start–especially an airplane like this where it’s an open design and critters can make themselves at home between flights.
This isn’t funny, meow! This is serious!
(Featured photo courtesy of YouTube)