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As a corporate pilot, how important are passenger and aircraft safety at your destination? What would you suggest to improve safety based on your experience?

Safety video for your aircraft would be my suggestion. It would include topics such as how to operate doors, use of belts, exit strategies, how to help others, and where to go in case of evacuation. It could be made accessible through passenger cellphones.

Gary Garavaglia
ATP/CFII. Pilatus PC-12
Chief Pilot
Pierson Aviation
Statesville NC


Passenger and aircraft safety are a top priority. I would call ahead to look for any threats in the area.

Ted Bekkers
ATP. Citation XLS & Gulfstream G100
Blind River ON, Canada


Passenger and aircraft safety are very important to us. FBOs need to train their personnel. I’ve had 3 incidents over the past 5 months that involved new employees not grounding the aircraft during fueling. Pay them a decent salary and maybe they’ll stick around for a while.

Brady Stainback
ATP. Hawker 900XP
MSI Aviation
Orlando FL


When flying around in the USA, we don’t really have to think about passenger or aircraft safety. When traveling international, it depends on where we are going. If a location looks like it might pose a safety risk to passengers, we would let them know and possibly recommend they hire some personal safety. As for the aircraft, if the situation is that bad, we might reposition to a safer location when possible.

Ryan Johnson
ATP. Challenger 604
KMR Aviation
Denair CA


As professional pilots, safety is our main priority, especially at our home base. Passenger safety is part of every trip, from planning to execution, since passengers are the key reason for our work. Aircraft, being our work tools, are always part of our safety planning and operating considerations. When away from home, we look for a facility that provides safety to passengers and plane. Professional pilots always prioritize safety. And if improvements are needed, these will be based on destination facility flaws, and will be carried out immediately in order to correct them. All flights can teach us lessons, and we need to analyze and take them into consideration for future operations. There is no perfection in safety. We are humans, and airplanes are pieces of machinery made by humans. We always aim for the highest standards.

Jorge Lara
ATP. Falcon 7X
Dir of Flight Ops
Quito, Ecuador


I’ve noticed that we rate everything in the aviation industry. And I was wondering why we haven’t developed a security rating system based on features, access, training, staffing levels, and current threats.

Robert Creek
ATP/CFII. Falcon 7X/2000EASy/50, Gulfstream G550/G450, Hawker 900XP, Learjet 40XR & Citation CJ1
Chicago IL


In the first place, pax and aircraft safety are the reason we provide these services. If safety is not a consideration, we might as well close the business. My suggestion is to create a safety culture right from the start. Management staff and personnel must be sensitive to safety issues, no matter how insignificant they may look.

Wilfredo Rebibis
ATP. King Air 300/200
Flight Ops Officer
Pacific Global One Aviation
Parañaque, Philippines


We’re responsible for the safety of our passengers while loading and unloading, and while escorting them to and from the aircraft. In regard to improving safety, I’d suggest giving passengers a thorough briefing about any special concerns for that particular flight.

Michael Zangara
ATP/CFII/Helo. Sikorsky S-76
Dir of Ops
Flexjet Vertical Lift
Stratford CT


It’s very important to have passengers feel safe. I’d suggest to always assist them through the minefield of red tape, such as customs and immigration, and make sure they have transportation, hotels, and anything that they may need.

Gavin Watson
ATP. Global Express
Self Employed
Jeffreys Bay EC, South Africa


Safety at the destination starts before departure, with preparation and planning. There are a few  things that should be considered. First should be weather at destination, as taking passengers into potentially bad weather may not be a wise thing. Second is availability of airside egress points, which can be a big issue for VIPs who don’t expect to be met by cranky airport security staff. Third, security of the airport and its surroundings. Fourth, attitude of local residents to the passenger – for instance, local politics and environment. Be aware of potential egg-throwers when taking unpopular politicians to rural airports. On arrival, a review of everything mentioned prevents any security and safety issues.

John McGhie
ATP. Hawker 850, Citation Ultra & King Air 350
Instructor and Examiner
Mcgoo Aviation Services
Aspley QLD, Australia


Currently, I work as an airline first officer for Latam, at which safety is of the utmost importance. However, as a corporate pilot who operated a Gulfstream G450 and a Learjet 45, I was aware that passenger and aircraft safety were major concerns that we had to deal with directly. Sometimes our information was limited, and it came from peer pilot experiences, specialized publications, and embassy bulletins. It would be beneficial to the aviation world to have a ranking system to rate FBOs and airports in this specific subject, including safety of the transfer to and from the airport, even if it is user-based, as is Tripadvisor, for instance. Although much information of this nature is available, I am unaware of a service that would regroup it in a single location.

Roberto Mesquita Ribeiro
Comm-Multi-Inst. Airbus A320
First officer
São Paulo SP, Brazil


Escorting passengers to and from the aircraft and terminal is something I always do. Never let a weekend line crew move your aircraft without being present. Because of their inexperience, they can cause hundreds of thousands of dollars in damage.

Dan Miller
ATP. King Air 350 & Pilatus PC-12
Line Pilot
Sunnybrook Air Service
Wellington CO


Safety is the name of the game. Safety considerations don’t end once the aircraft reaches its destination without any problems. I strongly encourage the aircraft owner/pax to use a professional, previously vetted chauffeuring service instead of rideshare services “à la Uber.”

Louis-Gabriel Lavigne
ATP. Piper M600, Pilatus PC-12
Contract Pilot
Service Aérien du Quebec
Saint-Benoît-Labre QC, Canada


I get paid to provide a safe, smooth, and efficient ride – in that order. I always have that in mind. Usually, this all starts the night before and ends with the post-flight.

Jon Leineke
ATP. King Air 200/90 & Citation I
Pilot/Self Employed
Jackson CA


The ultimate goal for us is always safety! As difficult as it is, demanding strict compliance with seatbelt and other requirements of the passengers is a must.

Phillip Scheel
Comm-Multi-Inst. Legacy 500
Contract Pilot
Brooklyn MI


Both passenger and aircraft safety are very important to us. I’d have 24/7 security and on-site fire and rescue services available.

Ron Shintaku
ATP/CFI. King Air 200
State of California
La Verne CA


My passengers choose their destinations, and we usually stay in the same area while they are there. When potential safety issues are discovered, they are relayed to the passengers to ensure they’re aware and have mitigating strategies in place if needed.

Pete Howell
ATP. Citation CJ1
Quiet Pilot
Naples FL


Unfortunately, safety is not important for some people, and it’s barely a topic of discussion. I believe a firmly established safety culture that includes the expectation of operating in a safe manner from the beginning would improve safety tremendously.

Jacob Meinig
Comm-Multi-Inst/A&P. King Air 350/300/200 & Pilatus PC-12
Charter Pilot & Parts Coordinator
Reading PA


Of course! It’s absolutely important. The whole purpose of my job is to get my passengers to their destination safely. If the destination is not safe for some reason – weather, inadequate facilities, or any other problem – we don’t go there.   Since many of my destinations are offshore helidecks on oil platforms, some things that make the destination safer would be installation of more offshore AWOS stations and more offshore repeaters to facilitate better comms with ATC.

Michael O’Brien
ATP/CFII. AW139, DA20, S92.
PHI Aviation
Pensacola, FL


Passenger and aircraft safety are extremely important and top priorities besides arriving harmlessly to the destination.

Robert Fricke
ATP/CFI. Citation Latitude
High Point NC


Nearly all FBOs that we use are very safety conscious concerning passengers and aircraft. We’ve had passengers disembark and start walking across an active ramp. But policing passengers is more of a crew responsibility.

Fred Herron
ATP. Gulfstream G550
Brokerage and Management
Cecilton MD


Based on my experience, safety begins with readiness to offer the service, and continues through returning to the crew’s residence. Safety considerations at the destinations should include thorough preparation for the trip. Also, using trustworthy vendors is key. We prefer FBO-sourced transportation for our clients to a random ridesharing service. If we are catering, that should be through a trustworthy source, too. As part of our service, we use local knowledge at the destination for areas to avoid when away from the airport. Since we don’t provide lodging or meals at destination, we’d research safe sources on request.

Herman Ross
ATP. Cessna 182 Skylane
Chief Pilot & Flight Instructor
Let’s Go Fly
Hansville WA


Our job as pilots has to be done professionally. Passengers and aircraft safety will be topmost for an aircraft captain. Turn back, diversion, and alternates have to be considered during every phase of flight. Key points will be awareness of aircraft performance, weather patterns, and condition and situation at the destination. All these can help to formulate an alternative plan should a situation arise.

Tong Bee Ngak
ATP. Citation Sovereign, Gulfstream G150 & Learjet 60/45/35A
Seletar Jet Charter
Singapore, Singapore