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"We are the protagonists of our stories called life, and there is no limit to how high we can fly."

PHD. MBA. MHS. Type rated on A350, A330, B777, B747-400, B747-200, B757, B767, B737, B727. International Airline Pilot / Author / Speaker. Dedicated to giving the gift of wings to anyone following their dreams. Supporting Aviation Safety through training, writing, and inspiration. Fighting for Aviation Safety and Airline Employee Advocacy. Safety Culture and SMS change agent.

Monday, March 31, 2014

My First Flight

Tomorrow we begin Blogging In Formation. The first week in April is all about the Solo flight. What a better way to begin than with a "first flight" encounter.


"To be sincere, I wanted to cry. For the first time I felt my soul was in connection with flight and all I knew is that I was born for this. For the first time, the hardest and most ambitious soul that lives in me became entirely satisfied with aviation. For the first time, I felt big and I felt I could do it. The best part: I thought it was a terribly difficult thing to perform, but actually it is much in the contrary."
Alex Wood

And then ... "I had my first 747 Flight!"

Blogging In Formation Line up:
Apr 1 Tues: Karlene and Andrew
Apr 2 Weds: Rob and Chip
Apr 3 Thur: Eric and Ron
Apr 4 Fri: Mark and Brent

Saturday I landed in China, the land of "illegal" blogging. Yes, I am banned until I return on April 2nd. It's times like this I so appreciate the freedoms we have. Thanks for your comments. I will post and reply as soon as I return. 

Enjoy the Journey! 
XOX Karlene

Friday, March 28, 2014

Tat Tatman

Friday's Fabulous Flyer


H.E. "Tat" Tatman, test pilot extraordinaire and loving husband passed away at the end of January at the age of 92.

Tat was not just any pilot. He was my dear friend Robin's husband. He was an aviation enthusiast who started flying before most of us reading this knew what aviation was. He passed away with a sharp mind and a quick wit, leaving behind an aviation world, family and friends who are all better off because of he presence on this earth. I am honored to have known him. With the greatest sorrow for his passing, he will be missed by all.

Where did it all begin? Tat was committed to following in his father's footsteps by becoming a Navy Pilot. However, after the attack on Pearl Harbor the Navy had thousands of more pilot recruits than it needed. The Army was a different story thus Tat joined the Army Aircorps in 1942.


After completing Basic and Advanced training he was assigned to Instructor status (a huge disappointment as everyone wanted combat assignments) and he taught Instrument and Multi-Engine courses. He joined the First Combat Cargo Squadron supplying forward fighter bases under General Stillwell and served in India and China flying the C-46 and C-47.


He returned home in 1945 looking to join the airlines. He was hired by United Airlines in November 1946. In the first 10 years he was furloughed 3 times. Eventually he was recommended to join United's Flight Test Engineering Department in San Francisco. 

While at United he flew every seat in every airplane United operated until he retired. His specialty airplane was the B-747. He attended the Boeing Pilot School, Boeing Mechanic School, and United Pilot training for the 747. He accepted more B-747-100 and 200 models than any other airline test pilot. 

Tat retired from United Airlines in 1981, and continued his long standing production flight test career in to experimental flight test, expert witness testimony, and post crash investigation in to his 70's. He continued flight instruction in general aviation aircraft well into his eighties.

Tat was married four times. He is survived by my friend Robin, his fourth wife, who according to Tat, "was not the first, but would be the last."  Robin is also a 747 pilot at Delta Air Lines.

 Robin and Tat

And just so you don't think he was careless with the ladies, he was married to each wife an average of 15 years, and Robin 25 years. He has 3 wonderful sons, several grandchildren and great-grandchildren all stemming from his first wife, Rosella.

He ordered his martini's dry, shaken, extra cold, and naked; and he drank anything that poured. He never let a lady sit without pulling a chair out, and always kissed their hand's on the first introduction. He also had a great sense of humor. During a toast on Robin's 50th birthday he said, "I never thought I'd be married to anyone this old ... or this long." Robin and Tat were an aviation team that were destined to be together to the very end. He will always be with her.

Tat was a consummate gentleman, loving partner and father, superior line pilot, outstanding test pilot, and excellent instructor. He positively influenced a current generation of airline and military pilots with his ferocious pursuit of excellence and integrity both in and out of the cockpit. His sharp wit and humor never left him.

Tat will be in our hearts always. 
Enjoy the Journey, 
Make every minute count
XOX Karlene 

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Flight Crews Wanted

While I am always looking for flying opportunities for those building hours or looking for a job in aviation, I often come across those opportunities for pilots who are retired, leaving their companies, and want to supplement their income. This is how I met the good people at Direct Personnel International.

Direct Personnel International offers industry leading contracts for experienced flight crew on all aircraft types. They have been in business since 1994, and now has offices in Europe, Asia and North America with a truly Global client list to match.

Is there a job for you?

Flight Crew Provision:

Our core business is placement of TRE, TRI, SFE, SFI, Captains, First Officers & Flight Engineers on all aircraft types.

Fixed Wing:

Boeing Family : B737-300/400/500, B737-600/700/800/900, B747-200/300/400, B757, B767, B777, DC-10 and MD11 aircraft.

Airbus Family : A320/A330/A340.

Embraer, ATR 42/72 , DA Falcon, Fokker, Gulfstream, Hawker, SAAB, CRJ.

Rotary – Augusta Westland, Eurocopter.

Executive Search & Selection Services

Type of candidates DPI can provide

  • Training and Safety Managers 
  • Revenue and Commercial Managers 
  • Operations and Engineering Managers
  • Flight/Ground Operations Managers 
  • Sales and Marketing Managers 
  • Airport Services Managers 
  • and many more…….

Ferry Flight Services:

We can arrange Demonstration Flights, Test Flights, Maintenance & Acceptance Flights and delivery to end customers. Service can include JAA & FAA License Types, Fuel Planning, Flight Planning, Overflight Clearances, Ground Handling, Landing, Airport & Navigation Fees, Crew Leasing, FAA DARs & Tech Reps.

If you are interested in joining our Ferry Flight pool and hearing about current requirements or looking for your next contract Register with us today.

Maintenance Personnel:

We also have dual rated B1 & B2 engineers available at short notice, they are experienced on ATR, Embraer, Boeing & Airbus aircraft family types.

Check our website for all our available positions and connect with us on social media for details on current contracts - we look forward to working with you!

Enjoy the Journey!
XO Karlene

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

CAT I Approach

Enjoy the Journey!
XO Karlene

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Pan Am Clipper

"Nostalgic - brings warm memories to the old generation!... and specially to people in aviation & travel."

A Friend Sent me the following photos and commentary. 

Pan Am had a unique service using it's clipper planes. A a trip around the world. Pan Am had the only scheduled flight that circled the globe. Later on, in the seventies they used the newer Jet planes for their flight circling the globe. If you thought air travel is luxurious, check out What It was like aboard the WW2-Era Boeing Clipper

Clipper passengers took their meals at real tables, not their seats.

For most travelers in the 21st century, flying is a dreary experience, full of inconvenience, indignity, and discomfort. That wasn't the case in the late 1930s, when those with the money to afford Trans-oceanic flight got to take the Boeing Model 314, better known as the Clipper.

Even Franklin Roosevelt used the plane, celebrating his 61st birthday on board. Between 1938 and 1941, Boeing built 12 of the jumbo planes for Pan American World Airways.

The 314 offered a range of 3,500 miles — enough to cross either the Atlantic or Pacific —and room for 74 passengers onboard. Of course, modern aviation offers an amazing first class experience (and it's a whole lot safer), but nothing in the air today matches the romanticism of crossing the ocean in the famed Clipper.

The Model 314's nickname Clipper came from an especially fast type of sailing ship, used in the 19th century.

The ship analogy was appropriate, as the Clipper landed on the water, not runways.

Here's a diagram of the different areas of the plane.

On Pan Am flights, passengers had access to dressing rooms and a dining salon that could be converted into a lounge or bridal suite.

The galley served up meals catered from four-star hotels.

If you want to sit at a table to eat with other people these days, you have to fly in a private jet.

There was room for a crew of 10 to serve as many as 74 passengers.

On overnight flights, the 74 seats could be turned into 40 bunks for comfortable sleeping.

The bunk beds came with curtains for privacy.

On the 24-hour flights across the Atlantic, crew members could conk out on these less luxurious cots.

Unlike some modern jets that come with joysticks, the Clipper had controls that resembled car steering wheels.

Navigating across the ocean used to require more manpower in the air.

The lavatory wasn't too fancy, but it did have a urinal — something you never see in today's commercial jets, where space is at a premium.

The ladies lounge had stools where female passengers could sit and do their makeup.

The Clipper made its maiden Trans-Atlantic voyage on June 28, 1939.

But once the US entered World WarII, the Clipper was pressed into service to transport materials and personnel. In 1943, President Franklin Roosevelt celebrated his 61st birthday on board.

Thanks to the Pan Am Historical Foundation for sharing its photos. The foundation is currently working on a documentary about Pan American World Airways and the adventure of the flying boat age. Find out more here.

Enjoy the journey!
XO Karlene

Monday, March 24, 2014

Break Your Fear!

"Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less."

- Marie Curie

There are many fearful these days, and rightfully so. There is nothing more frightening than the unknown. A few weeks ago I received the following email from Cameron Von St. James.

Cameron wrote:

"Eight years ago, my wife Heather was diagnosed with mesothelioma; a rare cancer that kills most people within 2 years of diagnosis. She had just given birth to our daughter Lily, and was only given 15 months to live. After a life saving surgery that included the removal of her left lung, LungLeavin’ Day was born. On February 2nd, we celebrated 8 years of Heather being cancer free.

The purpose of LungLeavin’ Day is to encourage others to face their fears! Each year, we gather around a fire in our backyard with our friends and family, write our biggest fears on a plate and smash them into the fire. We celebrate for those who are no longer with us, for those who continue to fight, for those who are currently going through a tough time in their life, and most importantly, we celebrate life!

This year, we asked bloggers to take part and spread the word about LungLeavin’ Day. We created an interactive page that tells the full story of our special day. Although the day has passed, we hope you will still check it out and share it on your blog. It would mean so much to Heather and I. Let me know what you think."

Cancer is a huge fear.  My friend Ryan Lock has been sitting bedside with his younger cousin, Ellis, age 15, who was diagnosed with Leukemia.  Not only did Ryan provide emotional support, but he took action and created a trust for teenage cancer patients. 

I mailed some of my favorite books to Ellis

Ryan says, 

"The trust is set up to fund activities, entertainment, TV's, games consoles, trips, tickets to see live concerts ryc for teenagers who are suffering. It is aimed to try help the teenage patient not lose out on any of his/her teenage years and try keep a sense of "normally" to their lives while they under go such treatment. It also helps the parents financially too for extra little bit of help for things that will be needed when the teenagers go home: public transport funds etc. It is also a cancer research charity, too, so donations go directly to help find a cure. It is a generic charity, so what I meant by that is that if anyone donates Ellis and his mum will not receive the money direct for them, but more so it will go to the charity that is helping him.

Basically all funding for health care is free anyway with out government, this charity fills in the gaps to accommodate for a teenagers life, if that makes sense.

They are so good, they take the teenagers to concerts of major music artists, they have a salon owner come in and set up each Wednesday to give free beautician, hypnosis and massage therapy to the kids and their family, they invite bands to play at the hospitals... and so on. It's amazing what they do."


Sometimes our fears get the best of us. But when we can face them head on, and survive, they give us the greatest strength, and we emerge into the world where nothing is impossible! 

Enjoy the journey!
XO Karlene

Friday, March 21, 2014

MH370 AvGeeks...

Friday's Fabulous Flyers

Did Captain Shah highjack his own plane?

For those of you who have read Flight For Control, you know that I addressed many issues facing pilots today. Something to the extent of, “Pilots are financially and emotionally bankrupt.”

We saw emotionally disturbed pilots with nothing to live for, as well as those on a mission to take control, willing to give their own life to make a statement for their cause. Then there was that far-reaching plan to take control of the industry with a personal agenda. But this is what fiction is based on—taking reality and pushing it to the next level.

The reality is, people break. It does not matter what walk of life they are in. The scary part is, what if they break while flying your plane? I do not know enough about Captain Shah’s mental state to know if this was the case. Time will tell on this. But I do not believe this for one reason only—he would have done this shortly after takeoff not fly for hours.

For all other reasons, I have my rational why I do not believe he was involved.


Put yourself into the head of your subject. If you were this captain and had plans to take your plane would you announce to the world that you had a simulator via YouTube? Would you openly share the simulator with your friends? I wouldn’t.

If they found his simulator in a dark room in the basement unbeknownst to his family and friends, I would be thinking differently. But he was open about his simulator and shared his love of flying with others.


I am friends with, and know hundreds of Avgeeks—people with a passion for flying—who have simulators. The only reason I don’t have mine set up is with seven grandkids, writing novels, hosting flying events, and a flying career, I have not found the time. But I plan on it.

This does not mean terrorists do not have simulators. But to come to the conclusion that he did this because he had a simulator is ludicrous.

Experience and Landing

If the captain wanted to take the plane, a pilot of his experience did not need a simulator to train for the event.

One theory was he used it to train others...

Train someone to hand fly a heavy jet through the mountains at night, to a remote strip and land safely without lights and an instrument landing system.

If this is a plot beyond our wildest imagination and a government was involved and aided the plane to land on an appropriate runway with an auto-landing, then the world is in trouble. Unless there is some reason to believe that...I’m not going there.

Even Asiana couldn’t make the runway in a 777 in VFR conditions—severe clear—with a check airman on board. Would it be possible to make a landing under these conditions? Yes, but not from anyone except a highly experienced pilot like Captain Shaw and then it would be a challenging task with a lot of ground support. But…


A highly experienced pilot would not have climbed to FL450. An experienced pilot would know that performance and structural integrity would be in question. Besides, why would an experienced pilot climb above the maximum service ceiling of the plane? The media tells us it was to make the passengers pass out.

Most airline pilots know that they can put their oxygen masks on and climb the cabin without actually climbing the plane. They can depressurize the cabin at their current altitude. So why would they climb? They wouldn’t if they knew what they were doing.
There is a possibility that the autopilot kicked off and the plane slowly climbed, stalled, dropped it's nose gained speed and then pitched back up, climbed, and continued in these phugoid oscillations, eventually leveling itself off. The real question is why.


The media continues to ask, “If someone tried to get into the flight deck, why didn’t the passengers attack?”

This is the same question that many people asked me on my initial speculation post. Remember, this event occurred in the middle of the night, 40 minutes into the flight. The cabin was dark. People were sleeping. The curtain is drawn between first class and coach. A flight attendant opens the door to take coffee to the crew.  Or there was already someone in the flight deck before takeoff. 

I am also not sure anyone would know what was happening at the time, or that the plane was turning. Not until the climb and descent would the passengers realize something was wrong.

Personality Profile

The question surfaced about the Captain attending the sentencing of his friend in a criminal case. I Googled that case to see what that was all about. Okay folks… Captain Shah was supporting his friend who was gay. The friend’s crime was sodomy. Now, do you think a man who was supporting the human rights of a friend would take away the rights of the passengers for the life they deserved to live? I don’t. 

Do You Think Captain Shah took his plane?
I don't! 

I've been wrong about many things, and nothing surprises me. But if he were to be involved, I would be very surprised.

Are you an AvGeek...who owns a simulator?

Fly Safe!
XO Karlene

Thursday, March 20, 2014

MH370 Fire? Fire? Fire?

I do not believe so!

Last night on CNN, the anticipated 20 minutes of discussion shifted to 2 minutes because of breaking news with the search in the Indian Ocean. Which has been updated to they have floating objects. Hopefully as you read this we have verification that the plane has been found.

One of the other guests on CNN stated there was a fire that took out all the radios and then our time was over. The power of blogs... I can respond here.

Burning Radios?

Despite what some think, a fire did not take out the radios, incapacitate the pilots and then the plane flew into the distance for 7 hours. 

When there is a fire in our automated electronic aircraft such as the A330, the pilots get a fire warning in the flight deck and the ECAM displays steps to shutdown various systems. If there is a fire in the equipment bay on the Airbus, we get an Avionics Vent Smoke message. I assumed the B777 had a similar warning system in their compartment. But someone commented and politely told there are no smoke sensors in equipment bay. Which I am surprised. I found a set of manuals and could not find reference to it. So I called my Boeing contact who said, "Yes, we have smoke detection in the equipment bay." But he did not bring home his computer and said he'll call me tomorrow and tell me what the ECAM message is.

However the smoke would be cycled through the air-conditioning system and the pilots would smell it. If they did... or we get a message...

The first thing we do: Don oxygen masks and establish communications. Then we remove power from the source if the fire is accessible.

Both pilots would put on their oxygen masks with a warning or an odor. One would fly the plane and turn to the nearest suitable airport for landing while declaring an emergency. The other pilot would perform the action items on the ECAM or in their Quick reference manual. There are only four items to shutdown with a smoke, fire, and fumes procedure: Turn off the recirculation fans, APU Bleed air, Gasper and the passenger seats.

This is not a daunting task that would overload the pilots. The image the experts paint by saying that we have to "put out the fire" and are too busy to talk brings to mind firefighters fighting a raging fire. This really is not what happens on a plane with smoke and fumes.

Captain Shah was an experienced pilot who would have donned his oxygen mask at the first sign of smoke. He would not have "pre-programmed" a waypoint. He would have programmed a new destination and flown direct to it notifying ATC.

A fire would not have made the plane climb to 45,000 feet then descend to 23,000. This plane will not fly away from its altitude dialed into the mode control panel. Someone had to make that happen, and it was certainly not incapacitated pilots.

Despite what someone thinks, there is no way a plane "on fire" will fly for 6 hours. This is why we put the plane on the ground when there is a fire. We don't have time in a burning plane.

Communications would have picked up oxygen flow from the mask microphone during the final comment. And... they would have told ATC where they were going and why.

The radios are not all on the same electrical bus. There are many buses for redundancy and to say they all went, might be a little far fetched. The probability of someone gaining access to the flight deck is far more likely without an explosion.

Besides... someone programmed that waypoint in the number three FMS. Why? 

Question to you pilots... wouldn't you either stay on course while you attempted to solve the problem, or if you knew you needed to land immediately, declare an emergency and head to an airport? Why would you put in a random waypoint and not notify anyone? The "all right good night" came after the programmed turn. I could buy the noxious fumes that were overwhelming and incapacitated the pilots if they continued on route and pressed on. If they smelled nothing...and it took them without being able to don their masks... why that turn?

Automated Aircraft Education... New Gen Planes

The B777, B787, A330 and A350 are different planes than what we use to fly. Major differences is the amount of help the plane gives the pilots during an emergency.

We don't need to figure out what the problem might be and search for a procedure, like we once did. We have a screen that names the emergency and provides steps to secure and deal with it.

We can fly, talk and navigate. The quick donning masks are not like the old planes, they can be pulled out with one hand and suck to your face.

This is a new world of aviation and dealing with emergencies is fast, easy, and efficient. A pilot with Captain Shaw's experience where flying comes second, would have dealt with any emergency. Think about this, if he couldn't do it... then who could?

CNN update! NEXT week after my trip.

Enjoy the Journey!
XO Karlene

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Pilot in The Jumpseat of MH370?

More Facts... Theory Shift...
But not far from the first...

I thought the flight deck was compromised. The timing, an hour into the flight, the flight attendants would have finished drink service to first class passengers and taken coffee to the pilots. This would have been a time the door was opened. I thought the terrorists turned the transponder off. They told the captain to fly the plane toward a different city with one mission in mind: Create another 911 event.

I thought that captain initially followed their directions and when he realized what was about to happen, he put the plane into the ocean to save thousands of lives on the ground. If I were in that seat and they decided they didn't need me anymore, I would click off the autopilot and push the nose over in descent during my final breath.

Updated Theory based on new information

I think someone was sitting in the cockpit, in the jumpseat during this departure. A young pilot, with associates in the back. The recent information told us that new position was programmed from "a computer between the pilots".

This would be the third FMS, something the jumpseater would have access to.

There is a history of one of the pilots, at least, allowing non-secure people in the flight deck. And Aviation Geeks like Captain Shaw are always willing to help a fellow pilot. Very probable they invited a pilot to sit with them during the takeoff.

Why my change from 'coming in' to already being there?

Based on an accurate timeline:

0041: Departed

0107: ACARs sent the last message. This was how they knew there was a position programmed that was not part of the original flight plan.

ATC passes them on to the next control agency...

0119: "All Right, Good Night." This could have been something one of the pilots would say, depending upon their clearance. Has anyone heard the ATC clearance to the aircraft? Have the families listened to the voice? Would this have been a proper response? It could, but it could also be something anyone may have said.

0121: Transponder off. Get rid of the crew and disappear before showing up with the next radar control. Turn the transponder off before the next control picks you up.

Initially I heard the timing of all the events started at the hour mark. However, now we know that at the 26 minute mark that position was programmed. I do not believe the Captain did this. More on that tomorrow.

But if the facts are accurate that a position was programmed via the third FMS... a jumpseater would have access to that FMS. Preflight complete, waypoints checked, and jumpseater inputs a new position. Programming via this FMS would also indicate the pilots did not program that turn.

Shutting Down Equipment

Anyone can Google and learn how to disable the passenger seats, turn off the transponder, and disable the ACARS. Anyone can learn to fly straight and level and turn. All of this can be accomplished by an experienced pilot too.

However, erratic flight maneuvers, climbing to FL450, above the max service ceiling, are all indicative of an inexperienced pilot. Not someone who knew what he was doing.

Could they land?

Hand fly a heavy jet through the mountains at night, to a remote strip and land safely without lights and an instrument landing system? I don't think so. Even Asiana couldn’t make the runway in a 777 in VFR conditions—severe clear—with a check airman on board. Would it be possible to make a landing under these conditions? Yes, but not from anyone except a highly experienced pilot. A climb above the service ceiling indicates anything but an experienced pilot.

I hope the pieces are found soon, so we can all put this puzzle together and lives can begin healing!

Join me tonight at 2100 ET on CNN on Piers Morgan's show, which may be hosted by Bill Weir. What... is Piers afraid to talk to me? And tomorrow I will Debunk the Myths of MH370.

May all your Journey's be safe.
XO Karlene

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

MH370 Did Not Fall From The Sky

March 7th/8th, 2014, MH370 disappeared from radar and has yet to be found. Speculation over the first weekend erroneously focused on the plane blowing up, possible equipment failure, and or an airworthiness directive causing fatigue and a rapid depressurization causing loss of control—I knew none of these situations were the case.

Frustrated that the search was being conducted in the wrong area I finally spoke out in MH370: Time to Speculate in hope that we could send the search crew in the correct direction.

It was not until days later that the authorities ruled out that initial speculation and came on board that this was not an accident and the plane did not fall out of the sky. As the days progress I am becoming equally frustrated as to what the media is saying. 

Is the media speculating
or jumping to conclusions?

There is a significant difference between speculation and jumping to conclusions. Speculation is taking the facts we know and using deductive reasoning to come to a possibility. Jumping to conclusions is saying the captain did this because he was Muslim, or that he did this because he had a simulator.

I may have been the first social media pilot to speak out speculating that the plane was hijacked and did not blow up, fall apart, and/or depressurize and fall from the sky. Many comments are now coming in saying I was right. I don't care if I'm right, as long as we learn what happened. I have also received many emails asking how I knew the plane was taken and there was not a catastrophic failure.

How did I know?

I used system knowledge and standard aviation procedures to deduce that it was not a catastrophic event and there was human intervention. But there is more. The reason could have something to do with the fact I was able to write an aviation thriller, Flight For Control, about pilot suicide and then two months after the novel was published a Jet Blue captain was locked out of the flight deck due to a mental breakdown. 

This event was not a prophecy, but pure speculation as to what could happen in our current world. I took the condition of the airline industry, human factors, and my education in human services and speculated ‘what if’.

I foresaw what “could” happen and wrote a very probable novel. Albeit fiction, I used my 34 years in the airline industry and combined it with psychology and wrote a book that we hope would stay fiction. But the truth is—pilot suicide can and did occur, and may again in the future. But in this case, I do not believe pilot suicide occurred on MH370.

Three weeks ago the sequel, Flight For Safety, came out about the challenges of automation with some very frightening truths—pilots losing their flying skills and not able to land and or fly their planes. This novel was in the hands of an Airbus A330 technical editor the day Asiana 777 crashed in San Francisco, with an exact scenario I had written a year prior.  How did I know? I saw it coming.

Book Three: Flight For Survival is outlined and the prologue features a plane that disappears over the Atlantic without contact. Yes, this was written before MH370 disappeared.

How am I writing these novels that are playing out in real life?

34 years flying, 8 airlines, 7 type ratings and twenty-three years instructing for major airlines on international aircraft, I have watched the history of automation increase in direct proportion of skill deterioration. Once again I speculated on what could happen and it came true—a major airliner crashed a perfectly good airplane.

I am not a prophet, I am an airline pilot with vast experience in flight training and human factors, and I saw the automation issues coming over twenty years ago. There is a reason experienced pilots are landing at the wrong airports and having mishaps with their planes.

I've lived through mergers, pension loss, and furloughs and see what it does to people. I took it upon myself to get a Masters in Human Services to help understand the human psyche.

Do I think someone landed MH370 in a remote strip? No.  Maybe this is wishful thinking on my part because if it is, our world would be in trouble, as Mark L. Berry outlines in his theory. Better safe than sorry?

My belief comes from deductive reasoning based on my automation and heavy jet experience, and what would have had to happen to make that landing a probability. I always say, never say never. But tomorrow I will share with you why I hold the beliefs that I do.

The Power of Speculation

Aviation control and regulation is reactionary. Speculation is about being proactive. Being proactive can prevent accidents from occurring and can keep terrorists off planes. Being proactive prevents people gaining access to an aircraft with stolen passports. It means not waiting five days to expand the search to passengers, crew, and a possible area outside the span of a plane falling out of the sky. There was no way what happened to AF447 could have happened to the Boeing.

If we can deduce and speculate what might happen from what we know, we can prevent it from happening in the future. We can also find this plane if we zero in on what might have happened by focusing on facts instead of jumping to conclusions which wastes valuable time. We lost at least five valuable days while heading down the wrong path.

The Time To Speculate post has had 118,000 views, and still counting, with hundreds of comments. (I am still planning on responding to everyone. Thank you for your patience if I haven't got to yours yet.) 

Some people have stated, “I hate to speculate.” I ask, “But why?”

Speculation done without blame, fear, and ignorance is nothing more than brainstorming. Our challenge is whether or not we have all the facts. Due to national security I can imagine the ‘classified’ information is being withheld. So we as viewers of this horrible movie can only speculate with what we know. Do we know everything? I'm not sure that we do.

Tomorrow, Wednesday March 19th, I will tell you why I do not believe the captain was to blame and why I do not believe the plane landed someplace to be used again in my post Debunking Myths of MH370.

We will find this plane and the answers. Until then, my heartfelt prayers go out to the families and friends of those on board MH flight 370.

Enjoy the journey and keep the faith!
XO Karlene

Karlene Petitt is an International Airline Pilot
Author of best selling Aviation Thrillers:

Monday, March 17, 2014

Where Dreams Come True...

And Smiles are Made...

Time to put the worlds troubles aside and runaway from reality to a place of imagination.

This weekend we flew to Florida for a fun-filled weekend with our youngest daughter, her husband, and two of our grandchildren.


May All Your Dreams Come True!

Enjoy the Journey!
XOX Karlene