Aviation in itself is not inherently dangerous...

I don’t think there’s a pilot who hasn’t heard that quote. But who said it? It’s always ‘Anonymous’.

I was going to post that in General Questions, but I googled it first. One page I found says that the originator was Captain A. G. Lamplugh, British Aviation Insurance Group, London, in the early-1930s. The person who posted that information said he’d been in touch with R. E. G. Davis, curator of air transport history at the Smithsonian Institution. Googling part of the quote and ‘Lamplugh’ turns up a couple of (unreferenced) articles that agree. (Well, they would since I searched on the name.)

Just thought I’d share.

Aviation in itself is not inherently dangerous. It’s only when you stop aviating and the ground comes up to smack you in the face that’s dangerous.

Air transportation, Volume 8; Volume 10 (1932), page 28.

Yes, it’s the landing, always the landing, and in particular, how abruptly you do it.

See, the trick is to throw yourself at the ground… and miss.

Pretty dangerous before you get that concept, and while practicing. But once you have it, no sweat.

That would explain my problem as a student with flaring too high.

Outside the cockpit, I always try to have just a little flare. It makes me look quite devonaire.

I always thought the trick was to crash gently, in a slow and gradual manner, so as not to damage oneself or anything else.

Of course, if an indelicate crash becomes unavoidable one should endeavor to hit the softest, least expensive object(s) available.

don’t neglect midair collisions as a hazard.

What’s that other saying? ‘It is better to hit a far thing slow, than a near thing fast.’ Or something like that.

Or, as I heard during a flight safety lecture:

Hours and hours of mind-numbing boredom punctuated by seconds of sheer terror.

Any landing you can walk away from is a good landing. Any landing whereby you can use the airplane again is an excellent landing.

I use that one with my students. I finish it with: “And you’ll know you’ve landed gear up if it takes full power to taxi.”

Speaking of landings, when I was first learning to fly we were shooting touch-and-goes. After one landing my instructor said he’d take over to demonstrate what he wanted. After we got airborne I asked him (genuinely curious), ‘Is there a reason we took off with full (40º) flaps?’ He’d forgotten to raise them. :stuck_out_tongue: