Never Trust a Student

At the heart of every flying Instructor lies a pesimist who always assumes that the student is out to get him.

The Royal Air Force (RAF) has a very enlightened view to Instructors getting "hands on" experience and this is reflected in the requirement for them to do regular Staff Continuation Training (SCT). Sometimes this is very formal and on other occasions more of a "Jolly".

In the 1980's, at a certain RAF training establishment, things were a little relaxed. SCT was primarily in the form of a Wednesday afternoon triangular cross country by a two Instructors in a Jet Provost. Flight planning became a little informal and the habit arose of using an old flight plan that had been flown recently by a student and to this end, students were required to deposit their old  flight plans in a draw in the briefing room. The Instructors would rummage through the draw, select an interesting flight plan and then proceed to fly it.

Eventually the students noticed this habit and decided that a little fun was called for. They carefully seeded in amongst the real flight plans several bogus flight plans, which on the face of it were valid, but required just a little more fuel than carried by the Jet Provost. Several Instructors got most of the way round before they realised that they didn't have enough fuel to get home...


Last updated: 22 April, 2003 19:34