The Single Engine Take Off Brief

Climbing straight ahead to 500 feet may not be the best option at every airfield-Pre flight planning should involve the take off path too!

The take off briefing is a briefing you give yourself before take off in a single pilot aircraft but when flying dual it can be given verbally to the instructor who may of course as commander override your briefing by adding, “ Should there be an emergency at any time during the flight I will take control”.

One of the largest differences between the professional approach to flying and the GA leisure approach is the poor attention to abnormal and emergency drills. The tick in the box approach is very convenient especially to the lazy instructor but it doesn’t produce pilots who are very capable of dealing with abnormal and emergency operation in a slick and efficient manner. As the 37 year old captain of a Ryan Air 737 said after a successful abandoned take off at Dublin which resulted after a Monarch Airbus entered the runway without clearance, “

THE TRAINING PAYS OFF”  (they stopped 300 metres short of the Monarch)

Ask yourself if you had an emergency on take off would you have rather have practised the drill a couple of minutes ago or 5 years ago. Professional pilots do this before every take off and they are in regular flying practice, the PPL holder is seriously disadvantaged by low experience and recency. However if you disagree or not one thing is certain if you cannot go through the motions in the relaxed environment of the taxiway you are very unlikely to be able get it right at 300 feet if the engine stops for real!

Here is a recent very sad engine failure after take off accident that occurred at Manchester Barton which highlights the need for timely practiced and rehearsed emergency drills.

It would seem that when the engine stopped the pilot did not take any action at all apart from making a mayday call before the aircraft stalled and control was lost.

This was an experienced pilot as PPLs go, he had a PPL(A) since 1988 and had flown

426 hours. Before gaining his PPL he had flown 460 launches in gliders.

Unfortunately the report doesn’t make it clear that if you are making an obstacle take off as opposed to a normal take off, where you just accelerate to the best rate of climb speed, the attitude is higher and the margin above the stall can be considerably lower. with an engine failure in this attitude it is vital the you push the nose over’ immediately to preserve the speed. Later tests conducted by the AIIB while investigating this accident showed that the pilot would have had only around 3 seconds to react before the aircraft stalled.

I also understand from unofficial sources that the pilot was wearing a high visibility vest. My understanding is that most of these vests are made from synthetic flammable material which makes the unesecarry wearing of these jackets inside the cabin pointless and risky in the event of an incident like this.


This will be a flaps zero take off on runway 34 (don’t say, “flaps up”-that can mean any position)

For a left hand circuit

If there is a problem before rotate which prevents the aircraft from flying I will close the throttle and apply max braking effort and advise ATC

In the event of an engine failure after take off I will immediately push the nose over and attempt to find the best clear area either ahead or to the sides of the aircraft, The best glide speed is xxx

I will then (touch drill) close the throttle, mixture ICO, fuel off, mayday call, tell pax brace brace(unlatch/open door)

In the event of a problem that requires an immediate return I will turn xx  fly a low level circuit not below xxxx for runway xx advising atc


On stating flap setting confirm visually the setting

Leaving the circuit-climbing above  500 feet before turning

On the Warrior the student will have to turn the fuel off-ensure he/she has practiced doing this as a stopping lock has also to be operated.

This a dire emergency procedure that you need to react immeadiately to and fly the aircraft very close to its limit and at times aggressively to get the aircraft onto a clear piece of ground. Dont waste time looking for an ideal field as its unlikely it will presnt itself


The commander of an aircraft is required by law to ensure that each passenger has received a safety briefing before departure. This can be through a personal brief or a laptop or even a card

PASSENGER BRIEFING-Factors to consider

Stay well away from the arc of the propeller at all times

Children must be under direct supervision at all times

The top surface of the wing can be slippery take care when boarding and disembarking the a/c

The C152 doors need slamming tight otherwise they can pop open on take off, Should a door open-if the doors Should doors come open on take off dont be alarmed it will not affect the aircrafts flight in anyway

Fasten your seat belts but also take the time to unfasten them so you can be sure you know how to operate them quickly

If I lift my hand at anytime please remain silent because I am either talking to ATC or listening out.

Please do not talk during the take off, climb out or on the descent and landing phase.

In the event of an unlikely emergency off airfield landing I will call BRACE BRACE if you are removing false teeth remove them, tighten your belt very tight

If you feel unwell or anxious at anytime tell me immediately

It is important that you know how to unlatch the door-like this

In the event of an emergency

Belts very tight for take off and at anytime I call BRACE BRACE

This is the brace brace position – picture

Please point out any aircraft in te air that you feel ate close to our aircraft co

Do not inflate your lifejacket until you are outside of the aircraft

The order of evacuation in the Warrior will normall be front right hand side pax first followed by rear seat passengers than left hand seat front occupant last

If the door becomes jammed for any reason kick out the perpex side windows to escape the aircraft in an emergency

MIB <>

10:55 PM (0 minutes ago)

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