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Pilot Skills in Upset Recovery Need Overhaul at All Certification Levels

Contact: Tara Ransbury


MESA, ARIZONA USA: APS Emergency Maneuver Training, a division of Aviation Performance Solutions LLC (APS), announced today the release of research results on the status of pilot skill level in upset recovery, specifically a pilot’s ability to deal with Loss of Control In-Flight (LOC-I). APS research offers insight into contributing factors to LOC-I being the leading cause of fatalities in commercial aviation worldwide.

In the 2007 Boeing Aircraft Company report, Statistical Summary of Commercial Jet Airplane Accidents Worldwide – 1959 to 2006, LOC-I represents the most severe causal factor of crash-related fatalities from 1997 through 2006 – even more than the historic leader, Controlled Flight Into Terrain. According to the Commercial Aviation Safety Team, there has been recent industry emphasis on fatalities being a more accurate representation of the severity of an accident as opposed to hull-losses traditionally used as the indicator.

APS formally evaluated 115 licensed pilots, of varying experience and certification levels, in their ability to recover from extreme flight conditions representative of LOC-I scenarios. Overall performance varied somewhat within pilot certification levels with professional aviators showing the best results at a 42% success rate and private pilots flying small general aviation aircraft at 28%. In just three days of specialized APS training, these same pilots were able to consistently recover from 94% of the same loss of control situations. In addition to dramatic skill development, the research also demonstrated the ability of pilots graduating from an APS 3-day 5-flight upset recovery training program to retain over 75% of their skills 18 months after completing the course. So far, the research has been internally sponsored by APS to identify the need in the marketplace and to demonstrate the effectiveness of a specialized training solution. The company is actively seeking external funding to augment their research efforts to provide a worldwide solution to prevent LOC-I accidents. More detailed information is available on the APS Emergency Maneuver Training website ( by clicking on “Media”.

“Our Loss of Control In-Flight research was motivated by the recognition that without an ability to identify the need or implement an effective solution, aviation would continue to be affected by high rates of loss of control crashes and associated fatalities indefinitely.” says Paul BJ Ransbury, President of APS Emergency Maneuver Training, “As evidenced by our research results, pilots are ill-equipped to deal with loss of control scenarios beyond the accepted limitations of their training requirements during pilot certification and recurrent simulator training. Just as important as identifying this skill deficit in pilots is our demonstrated capability to dramatically improve a pilot’s ability to effectively resolve a wide variety of loss of control situations. The exciting part is that it takes only a few days to instill these life-saving piloting skills and the increased ability lasts for years.” Mr. Ransbury continues to explain that the extensive academic understanding imparted to pilot trainees participating in APS multi-day training courses, combined with proprietary building-block advanced flight training regiments, produces pilot graduates armed with the knowledge and practical skill to recognize, avoid and, if necessary, recover from in-flight upset situations.

ABOUT APS EMERGENCY MANEUVER TRAINING: APS Emergency Maneuver Training, an FAA-approved 141 Flight School specializing in Upset Recovery, Spin Training and Instrument Recovery courses, is the largest provider of dedicated upset recovery training services in North America. Offering what has been coined the “Master’s Degree Program in Upset Recovery Training”, APS continues to receive a growing influx of positive attention by pilots and safety organizations throughout the aviation industry. As a compliment to its industry-leading training facility in Arizona, APS uses the Extra 300L German-built aerobatic training aircraft. The Extra 300L provides the safest in-flight training environment possible, yet allows a pilot to explore any flight envelope or maneuver series desired. This aircraft is the highest performance certified aerobatic aircraft in the world and allows realistic training amidst a safe environment under the guidance of expert military-trained commercially experienced flight instructors. The company has the resources to train thousands of students each year and provides complimentary course evaluations to corporate flight departments, insurance companies and training organizations interested in mitigating the LOC-I threat.

For media inquiries, photos and flight information, visit: or contact the APS VP Business Development, Tara Ransbury, toll free at 1-866-359-4273 or via email at

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