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Pilot's Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge
Aeronautical Decision-Making
Situational Awareness

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Pilot's Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge



Table of Contents

Chapter 1, Introduction To Flying
Chapter 2, Aircraft Structure
Chapter 3, Principles of Flight
Chapter 4, Aerodynamics of Flight
Chapter 5, Flight Controls
Chapter 6, Aircraft Systems
Chapter 7, Flight Instruments
Chapter 8, Flight Manuals and Other Documents
Chapter 9, Weight and Balance
Chapter 10, Aircraft Performance
Chapter 11, Weather Theory
Chapter 12, Aviation Weather Services
Chapter 13, Airport Operation
Chapter 14, Airspace
Chapter 15, Navigation
Chapter 16, Aeromedical Factors
Chapter 17, Aeronautical Decision Making




Balancing workloads can be a difficult task.
Figure 17-16. Balancing workloads can be a difficult task.

Recognizing a work overload situation is also an important
component of managing workload. The first effect of
high workload is that the pilot may be working harder but
accomplishing less. As workload increases, attention cannot
be devoted to several tasks at one time, and the pilot may
begin to focus on one item. When a pilot becomes task
saturated, there is no awareness of input from various sources,
so decisions may be made on incomplete information and the
possibility of error increases. [Figure 17-17]

When a work overload situation exists, a pilot needs to stop,
think, slow down, and prioritize. It is important to understand
how to decrease workload. For example, in the case of the
cabin door that opened in VFR flight, the impact on workload
should be insignificant. If the cabin door opens under IFR
different conditions, its impact on workload will change.
Therefore, placing a situation in the proper perspective,
remaining calm, and thinking rationally are key elements in
reducing stress and increasing the capacity to fly safely. This
ability depends upon experience, discipline, and training.

Managing Risks
The ability to manage risk begins with preparation. Here are
some things a pilot can do to manage overall risk:
• Assess the flight's risk based upon experience.
Use some form of risk assessment. For example, if
the weather is marginal and the pilot has low IMC
training, it is probably a good idea to cancel the

The pilot has a certain capacity of doing work and handling tasks.
Figure 17-17. The pilot has a certain capacity of doing work and handling tasks. However, there is a point where the tasking exceeds the
pilot's capability. When this happens, tasks are either not done properly or some are not done at all.