Weather Hazards© Course offers specialized training for professional pilots

Weather Hazards© Course offers specialized training for professional pilots

27-Jul-2012 Source: Pilot Weather Training

While National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) reports most commonly find human error to be the direct cause of aviation accidents, weather is a primary contributing factor in 23 percent of all aviation accidents.

The total weather impact is an estimated national cost of $3 billion for accident damage and injuries, delays, and unexpected operating costs.

Michael Wittman is all too familiar with these facts.

The founder of Pilot Weather Training, Wittman has developed the Weather Hazards© Course for professional pilots. This is a departure from most other programs on the market, which are simply repeats or refresher courses on the ground school weather training that pilots received when they began their training.

The Weather Hazards© Course includes four modules on the hazards that are most likely to cause dangers or delays to commercial flights at higher altitudes – turbulence, thunderstorms, icing, and frontal systems.

The Federal Aviation Regulation (FAR) Part 135-55 requires two hours of annual meteorological training. This also requires expanded training for high altitude safe weather flying for high performance equipment.

The online course is priced at $79 per pilot, making it the most affordable alternative to meet the regulatory requirements.  Regional airlines and charter companies that are still recovering from the recent recession will be able to ensure their pilots are well-prepared to assess, avoid, and respond to weather issues and remain in legal compliance.

The interactive course includes graphics, animations and photographs to illustrate very relevant concepts as they appear to professional pilots in the industry; and students report the explanations are very thorough, but a thread of good humor makes the two-hour course quite enjoyable, and most importantly, memorable.

Pilots may register, log in, and interact with the program at any time over a two-week period.  Upon successful completion of the program (all of the questions must be answered correctly) the pilot is awarded a printable Certificate of Completion to show that he is in compliance with the training requirements.

Wittman is a veteran of aviation weather and of founding businesses in the aviation industry. He was the founder of Pacific Coast Forecasting Inc., which became AvPlan Trip Support (a division of AvFuel) in 2010.

Benefits of the The Weather Hazards© Course

  • Completely online course suits the schedule of professional pilots.
  • Flexible format allows pilots to stop and resume the training as needed.
  • Course covers topics most likely to impact high-altitude, commercial flights, including in-flight icing, turbulence, thunderstorms and frontal systems.
  • Since the course was written by an Aviation Meteorologist and experts in flight planning, the weather information is combined with practical advice that commercial pilots can use. As an example, a dangerous icing condition can usually be alleviated by simply changing altitude by 300 feet or less.
  • At $79, the course is the least expensive method of complying with FAA regulations requiring current weather training each year for pilots.

Future courses are planned that will allow pilots to continue their education and remain in compliance.

In addition, Pilot Weather Training Inc. offers weekly weather training tips for pilots free of charge via email.  The weekly tips are a helpful supplement and refresher that easily fits into the schedule of the busiest professional.  Pilots may register at

About Pilot Weather Training

The Pilot Weather Training company is focused on providing the flying community a unique, convenient method to understand all aspects of weather and its relationship to flight operations.  Weather is still the number one killer in aviation.  Pilot Weather Training does not accept lack of knowledge as an excuse for endangering personnel and equipment.

There are many sources for flight crews to acquire weather data.  Many of these are free and available over the internet.  One of the goals of Pilot Weather Training is to establish a competence in individuals, so they can recognize dangers and create alternatives by flight planning safely, and efficiently.  Pre-planning is a key ingredient for staying safe.  Avoiding a dangerous situation without an encounter is much easier than trying to figure out where to go now after an unexpected encounter because of a misunderstanding of the weather.   In these training courses, pilots will acquire new skills and abilities they need and will use through a better understanding of aviation weather.

This company and the courses have been developed by professional meteorologists, pilots, and other aviation experts with many years of experience.  While they take a scientific approach to the explanation of theory, they also deliver facts related directly to operations.  This relationship makes it possible for pilots to enjoy a new understanding, both practical and accurate.  The intent is to educate through example and instill knowledge that will allow practical application for the future.

About Michael Wittman

Mike Wittman is the aviation and weather expert behind Pilot Weather Training and the Weather Hazards© Course.

The founder of Pilot Weather Training and of Pacific Coast Forecasting Inc.  Mike has started and led organizations dealing with aviation and weather.  At the time of its sale to AvPlan (a division of AvFuel) in March of 2010, Pacific Coast Forecasting Inc was eleven years old and had annual sales exceeding $10 million.

Mike began his weather training in the United States Navy, as a Meteorologist/Aerographers mate, as a certified weather observer and certified flight forecaster. He obtained a bachelor of Geography from California State University at Long Beach with an emphasis on meteorology and climatology.  He has completed about half of the coursework toward an MBA from the University of Phoenix Graduate School.

Mike enjoys working with aviation operators worldwide to make their pilots, dispatchers, and entire operation safer and more efficient by working with, rather than against, weather phenomena.

Other Presentations and Accomplishments

  • At the 2011 NBAA annual conference of Schedulers and Dispatchers, presented the training course “Aviation Weather and Computer Flight Planning”.
  • Co-chairman of the NBAA annual meeting and convention, 1986.  Guest speaker for various dispatcher organizations delivering presentations on International Flight Operations, Computer Flight Planning, and United States Customs requirements.
  • Led the Van Nuys and Burbank business aviation group to secure US Customs at these airports.  This was a process lasting several years.  Took the program from introducing to CBA to clearing aircraft.  Program was discontinued due to budget constraints.
  • In October of 2008, presented “Aviating through Weather” to the Southern California “99’s”, a general aviation private flyers group.  The course consisted of two hours of live slide presentation of aviation related weather phenomena and self-briefing techniques for the light aircraft pilot operating at lower altitudes.  Course was a paid presentation.

Mike is available for speaking engagements and custom training consulting. He has made entertaining and informative presentations about aviation weather, weather forecasting, ADDS weather, and interpreting weather briefings to aviation groups such as the NBAA Schedulers & Dispatchers Conference and various corporate groups.

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