Industry safety veteran Don Bateman has proposed a study of low-cost technology modifications to reduce loss-of-control accidents.

Speaking at a Flight Safety Foundation seminar in Istanbul, he suggested a hybrid version of the Western and Russian artificial horizon systems that would be more intuitive than either.

Bateman, who helped develop the enhanced ground proximity warning system (EGPWS), alternatively proposes a "recovery arrow" and spoken alert to counter excessive bank.

He also suggests using EGPWS terrain data to detect runway line-up, and warn pilots to check flaps, as well as alerts for low airspeed.

Bateman's research has also revealed that loss of control accidents are 10 times more likely to occur in non-fly-by-wire aircraft than their digitally flight-envelope-protected counterparts. He calculates that such accidents occur in non-fly-by-wire aircraft once every 3.7 million flights, whereas in FBW aircraft they occur once in 37 million departures.

Loss of control or lack of control accidents have become the biggest single killer accident category since EGPWS dramatically reduced the phenomenon of controlled flight into terrain, the previous biggest killer, hence his interest in reducing loss-of-control risk.

Source: Flight International