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3 Answers

Spin training and parachute requirements

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FAA Regulations

Hello all, According to CFR 14 91.307 parachutes are required for any maneuver which exceeds 60 degrees bank or 30 degrees pitch. The reg goes on to make an exception for when a CFI or ATP is giving instruction in a maneuver required for a certificate or rating. This obviously would allow for a CFI candidate to be trained in spins without a parachute. However, it becomes a little more gray when dealing with a private or commercial pilot certificate applicant. My personal take on the issue (until proven otherwise) is that you *must* have a parachute if you perform intentional spins with someone training for a private or commercial certificate. My reason is two-fold: 1) better safe than sorry; 2) because spins are not listed under part 61 as required areas of operation for a private or commercial certificate, whereas they are for CFI candidates. Yes, spins must be taught as an aeronautical knowledge area for private pilots -- but it is not required that they be demonstrated in an airplane. "Not required," I believe, is the key. So, what do you all think?

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3 Answers

  1. Matthew Waugh on Sep 06, 2010

    Well of your reasons, number 1 is an opinion, and you’re entitled to that opinion. In my opinion if you suited somebody up with a parachute in a C152, you started the spin at 5,000 feet and it all went horribly wrong, the only effect of the parachute would be for the investigators to take note of the existence of the parachute on the body of the pilot still seated in the aircraft – but the chances of anybody actually being able to make use of a parachute seem slim to me.
    For reason 2 however I refer you to AC 61-67C paragraph 301 which goes through it’s reasoning and ends up stating:

    “Because spin entry, spins, and spin recovery are required for a flight instructor certificate or rating, a person receiving instruction from a CFI (or an ATP instructing in accordance with section 61.167) need not wear an approved parachute while instruction is being provided in these maneuvers. This provision applies regardless of the certificate or rating for which the person is receiving training and also if the person is receiving instruction that is not being provided for the purpose of obtaining any additional certificate or rating. The instructor providing the training is also not required to wear an approved parachute while providing this flight training.”

    So it’s not really that grey, if you can find an instructor to ride along with you then you don’t need a parachute.

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  2. Matthew Hammer on Sep 06, 2010

    Excellent. Had a feeling the answer would be in an AC somewhere.

    Also, in regards to “better safe than sorry,” I was referring more to the possibility of busting a reg. If you think it might not be legal, play it safe and don’t do it.

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  3. Graeme Nichol on Sep 27, 2010

    Go and find yourself a Citabria, Pitts or something aerobatic, don a ‘chute and get some real experience and training in spins.
    You may find a new sport along the way!

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