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The human operator, the least reliable element of an aerodyne, but the most essential...!
Frank Caron (1991)

Last update:
26 September 2016

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Nice to know - Icarus oath

Icarus legend

Icarus was the son of the inventor Daedalus and a slave named Naucrate. King Minos of Crete imprisoned Daedalus and Icarus in the Labyrinth to punish Daedalus for helping the hero Theseus to kill the monster called the Minotaur and to escape with Minos' daughter, Ariadne.

Daedalus knew that Minos controlled any escape routes by land or sea, but Minos could not prevent an escape by flight. So Daedalus used his skills to build wings for himself and Icarus. He used wax and string to fasten feathers to reeds of varying lengths to imitate the curves of birds' wings.

When their wings were ready, Daedalus warned Icarus to fly at medium altitude. If he flew too high, the sun could melt the wax of his wings, and the sea could dampen the feathers if he flew too low.

Once they had escaped Crete, Icarus became exhilarated by flight. Ignoring his father's warning, he flew higher and higher. The sun melted the wax holding his wings together, and the boy fell into the water and drowned. Daedalus looked down to see feathers floating in the waves, and realized what had happened.

He buried his son on an island which would be called Icaria, and the sea into which Icarus had fallen would ever after be called the Icarian Sea (between the Cyclades and Asia Minor).

Icarus oath

Conscious of the privilege that the joys of the flight constitute:

I will never forget the responsibilities which result from this, to ensure the safety of my possible passengers and people on the ground.
I will rigorously respect the regulations and the principles of deontology applicable to my flying activity, from the preparation to the execution of flight.
I will endeavour to maintain and improve my theoretical and technical training.
I will know the limits of my competences and those of the material, and will take care not to exceed them.
I will prepare a possible flight of demonstration with meticulousness while endeavouring not to approach the limits of the machine.
Being given the extent of the consequences of a failure of my share, I will supervise my physical and moral health particularly, and will abstain from in particular drinking alcohol before flying.
If I take along a passenger, I will not omit to clarify the situation with respect to the insurances. I will never seek to dazzle it and even less to frighten him or her.
I will announce any breakdown or deterioration, repaired or not, to the person in charge for the material, like any incident likely to interest safety.
I will always respect the principles of courtesy and solidarity which animate the life of the aeronautical community and ensure its reputation.
I will make benefit from my experience the least experienced and I will attentively listen to those which are more.
I will have thus contributed to reinforce the safety of the aeronautical sports and to improve the image that the public make of it.

quick links

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Why air safety improvement is too slow (organisation)?

Why air safety improvement is too slow (culture)?

Why training is the main solution to human factors issues

Human factors still the current challenge of the industry

No limits for the understanding of human factors

Suggestions for a discipline committee

Too long briefings

Current CRM have reach its limits

Aviation safety international legal definitions

Two statements about fatigue every manager must know