Bombardier claims high demand for the new pilot safety training package it provides with its products. Take-up for the safety refresher training course - dubbed "Leading Edge" by the manufacturer when it launched the idea in February - is running at 85% among buyers of its business jets, the company says.

The course is human-factors based, designed to make pilots aware of error-inducing situations like fatigue, hypoxia and flight upset, and to provide them with the ability to recognise and recover from them. These additional modules "supplement simulator training and actual flight training", according to Bombardier Business Aircraft director of flight operations Bob Agostino.

"Our customers have demonstrated overwhelmingly that they appreciate the added value Leading Edge brings," adds the company's vice-president James Hoblyn.

The concept was developed from experience gained in Bombardier's annual "Safety Standdown", a three-day human factors training session aimed at all business aircraft pilots that has been running now for 10 years.

The training has been endorsed by the US National Business Aircraft Association, the Federal Aviation Administration and Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, and in the 2-5 October session at Bombardier's Wichita base this year it includes new training modules on runway incursions, weather radar use and icing awareness.

The concept of packaging pilot training - beyond a simple type rating course - with the purchase of new business aircraft is gaining ground, having been embraced in varying degrees by the very light jet manufacturers. Eclipse, for example, makes the all-embracing course compulsory except for pilots with current airline transport licences.

Source: Flight International