OVER­COM­ING THE FEAR OF FLY­ING

Hospitality 9ja - - Content -

Aac­cu­mu­lated s a Cap­tain of an Air­line with over 16,000 hours of ying hours logged to date and 29 years of ying ex­pe­ri­ence I guess I am like many of my col­leagues and feel very safe and at home in the air. It is hard for us to con­ceive that there are some peo­ple in the back of our planes that are lit­er­ally scared out of their minds of ying.

We take for granted that fly­ing is the safest form of trans­porta­tion in to­day's so­ci­ety and have seen the sta­tis­tics that prove it.

This as­sump­tion on our be­half that there is no rea­son at all to be afraid of ying can numb us to the con­trary. There are and there will al­ways be those that are scared to death to y. Per­son­ally I be­lieve that there are sev­eral fac­tors that con­trib­ute to this fear and will take my time to ex­plain some of them : Hol­ly­wood and the me­dia must take some of the blame for this and in an ef­fort to sell movies and news­pa­pers they have played on peo­ple's fears to gain prot. Drama­ti­za­tion in the movies and mas­sive head­lines in the pa­pers of even the small­est air­plane crashes has drawn fo­cus on the safety of ying, where as in com­par­i­son the thou­sands of peo­ple dy­ing in car ac­ci­dents on the roads around the world every sin­gle day does not even have the slight­est at­ten­tion as this has be­come nor­mal­ized. Not un­der­stand­ing the physics of ying and how air­planes ac­tu­ally y. This con­trib­utes to enor­mous fear of the un­known Whereas in sim­ple laws of uid dy­nam­ics it can eas­ily be ex­plained how a wing cre­ates lift from mov­ing for­ward in the air by the shape and de­sign of the wing. The up­per side of a wing is curved and the lower side is at and this makes the dis­tance that the air mol­e­cules have to travel fur­ther, when trav­el­ing over the up­per side of the wing ver­sus the lower side of the wing. The cur­va­ture on the up­per side cre­at­ing a longer dis­tance. This means that the air trav­el­ing on the up­per side has to speed up much more to catch their friend air mol­e­cule who de­cided to travel on the un­der­side of the wing so that they can meet on the other side at the trail­ing end at the same time. When the air speeds up it cre­ates a lower

HOW CAN SOME­THING SO HEAVY STAY IN THE AIR

pres­sure on top of the wing and this again means the wing is seek­ing up­wards to equal out the higher pres­sure air that is much higher above the undis­turbed sur­face of the up­per side. This cre­ates an up­wards lift force and is what keeps the air­plane in the air. A good ex­per­i­ment is hold­ing a spoon from the tip of the han­dle lightly and then plac­ing it into a stream of run­ning wa­ter where the spoon with its curved pro­file is the up­per side of the wing and the wa­ter is the air. The curved side of the spoon will be pulled into the stream of wa­ter due to the ex­act same ef­fect the wing gets pulled up from air pass­ing over the wing cur­va­ture while in the mov­ing air. Un­der­stand­ing some of these very ba­sic phys­i­cal laws of aero­dy­nam­ics can solve the fear of not know­ing. An­other big mis­un­der­stand­ing is that if all the engines on a plane stop work­ing the air­plane will sim­ply drop out of the sky and crash. This noth­ing close to real­ity and must also be de­bunked.

Air­planes are all glid­ers just like birds and can eas­ily glide for very long dis­tances with no engines and reach the air­port or a suit­able land­ing area.

An­other huge fac­tor is that we can­not see the air mol­e­cules that we are ying through and the nat­u­ral waves that can be up in the air. Com­par­i­son to a boat on the ocean the pas­sen­gers can see the waves that nat­u­rally move the boat up and down in the wa­ter and in been able to see the waves we are able to an­tic­i­pate and see the ef­fects it has on the boat and pre­pare our­selves in ad­vance. A car driv­ing on a bumpy road is also true in the same sense as we can see the bumps ahead and can an­tic­i­pate that the car will have a bumpy ride know­ing this we un­der­stand and ac­cept this. In air­planes ying in the air we do not see these nat­u­ral air waves and or bumps in the road ahead and can ex­pe­ri­ence tur­bu­lence and even though it is as nat­u­ral as a boat on a wavy ocean or a bus driv­ing on a bumpy road peo­ple tend to get very scared and think that some­thing is very wrong and that the plane is go­ing to crash, when in fact it is a very nor­mal thing as the air­plane moves through the nat­u­ral waves of the air. As for the pi­lots sit­ting up front there are few ca­reers out there that de­mand so much rig­or­ous train­ing and ex­ams that have to be passed every six months through­out a Pilot's ca­reer. This on top of thor­ough med­i­cal ex­ams every six months to prove both phys­i­cal good health and men­tal health. You can be as­sured that the Pi­lots up front have demon­strated their skills and med­i­cal health over and over again and earned their priv­i­lege be al­lowed to sit up front in the cock­pit and y you safely to your des­ti­na­tion.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Nigeria

© PressReader. All rights reserved.