Aviation Law Monitor

Insight and Commentary on aviation accidents and the law

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Instrument approach procedures are pre-determined paths and maneuvers that, if followed, will guide an aircraft to a runway in reduced visibility.  The last leg of an instrument approach procedure is typically a straight line (more or less) to the end of the runway.  The straight line minimizes the turns the pilot must make to land the aircraft.

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On October 2, 2019, a World War II-era B-17 flying fortress bomber departed Bradley International Airport in Connecticut for a local sightseeing flight with 10 paying tourists on board.  Shortly after takeoff  the pilot radioed that he was returning to the airport because of an engine problem.  A witness reported an engine was sputtering and smoking. Ultimately, the pilot reported