Hazardous Attitudes

The Notorious Five

These attitudes were formulated by Embry Riddle Aeronautical University in response to a commission by FAA Federal Aviation Authority to develop and validate training programs to address the problem of poor pilot decision making.

All pilots must be fully aware of these attitudes and be able to avoid them as they have strong negative impact on decision making and judgment at the flight deck.

Hazardous Attitude 1: Resignation
'Whats the use? Forget it I give up!'
When operations at the flight deck don't go as planned or when confusion arises, it is human nature to blame it on fate. However, in aviation 'leaving it to fate' might and most probably compromise the safety of the flight. It is essential for all pilots to remain proactive and also reactive. The countless SOP's, rules, regulations that have been placed for flight operations were formulated to assist flight crew to tackle and troubleshoot every possible

Hazardous Attitude 2: Anti-Authority
'Why should I listen to you?'
This attitude usually surfaces upon people who have non conformist tendencies. Pilot that express such an attitude are usually resentful towards comments and/or advice from others, be it superiors or subordinates. The also tend to disregard operating procedures, rules and regulations. However, there is a fine line that lies between 'anti-authority' and the natural prerogative to question to authority especially when there is an error suspected. Many mistake anti-authority as a solution to balance out the 'power gradient' in the cockpit. Hence it is only wise for pilots to bring up issues that they feel go against protocol after checking and rechecking.

Hazardous Attitude 3: Impulsivity
'Do it QUICKLY!'
This occurs to pilots who feel the need to do anything, immediately. Such people who display such attitude work on the concept that 'doing something is better than doing nothing'. Such an example of impulsivity occurs particularly in the ab-initio stages of flight training. For example when facing unusual attitudes such as a descending turn, most pilots would pull back on the control column on impulse. Doing so would cause indicated airspeed to increase dangerously, hence proper procedure would be to throttle back before applying back pressure. Acting on impulse is dangerous as it usually involve uncalculated and irrational actions.

Hazardous Attitude 4: Invulnerability
'Nah I dont think it'll happen to me!'
Despite the fact that mishaps in aviation do have a rather low percentage probability, many still rest assured on this fact and oft take it for granted. Such attitudes would compromise vigilance and cause pilots to overlook certain issues that they feel are of less importance (going thru checklist twice, good lookout). Remember accidents can happen to ANYONE!

Hazardous Attitude 5: Macho
'Come on! I can do this!'
Pilots have a tendency to show how good they are. Many associate this attitude with males (especially those who display alpha male characteristics) but such an attitude can also happen in females. It occurs when pilots are trying to prove themselves in the wrong way, which often results in taking unnecessary risks.

Neutralizing Hazardous Attitudes

If hazardous attitudes are not corrected they contribute to poor judgement and have played a part in many aircraft accidents in the past. The first step is to positively identify the attitude. After a pilot recognizes a thought as hazardous and identifies it they should then state the correct antidote from the table below. Pilots should memorise the antidotes so that they come to mind when needed.

The Five Hazardous Attitudes Antidotes (image embedded from Pilotoutlook on 22 September 2009)

Hazardous Attitude Assessment

Find out if you have a hazardous attitude. Try the Hazardous Attitude Assessment [Here]

Contributors to this page

Authors / Editors

Kiwi FighterKiwi Fighter

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License