Mode Awareness and Automation

mode awareness

The strength of automation is also its weakness. In offloading pilot workload, automation causes pilots’ skills to perish. When these skills are most needed (due to automation failure or misinterpretation) they are found lacking, because the very automation that had so ably assisted them for so long has also dulled their abilities. Relating this to flight 140, one of the key skills essential for proper autopilot management (which seemed to have perished just in time for it to be needed the most) was the skill of mode awareness.

This article was written for CASA’s flight safety magazine and can be found by clicking here or on the picture. 

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