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accident with no violation & employment

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Well-known member
Aug 27, 2002
I was recently involved in an aircraft accident while flying 135 in a twin. I was investigated by the FAA and no violation was cited. I do have to take a 709 ride. My question is, do I have any chance of flying for a large corporate outfit or airline? What are my odds seeing how I didn't get violated? I do not want to do the type of flying that I was doing for the rest of my career(cancelled checks).

Thanks for your insight
It depends on whether your dad is a captain at that airline. I new a guy who got hired on at American Airlines with 2 accidents on his record.....turns out his dad was a captain over there.
No, my dad is not an airline pilot, but I did stay in a Holiday Inn last night!! HAHA Thanks I appreciate the response. I have heard of the same thing happening. This is where, who you are is not as important as who you know. Once again thanks for the response.

More information is needed. The nature of the accident, and y oru involvement and responsibilties are important issues. Lack of a violation isn't necessarily validation that nothing was done wrong on your part. If you received a violation, it's not necessariyl validation of the fact that you did do something wrong, either. One needs to look at mitigating circumstances.

When the official reports become available, get them and review them carefully for the facts. Make sure that any input you have or have had is accurate, and gather all the data you can on the event. Keep a file; it may be of use to you later.

The way you present this event has a big bearing on it's impact on you in the future. Weather you are responsible or not, you need to portray this in a way which is favorable to you. If you were responsible, show what you've learned and how you've grown, and why it will never happen again. Show how it's made you more continetious. If you weren't responsible, show the same things, convincingly.

Pass your 709 ride with flying colors, and be sure to retain a report from this, too. Did your employer retain you, or were you let go? If you can show that the event was no fault of your own, and that your employer kept you aboard, this is stronger validation of your integrity in the event than lack of a violation from the FAA. Even better, be sure to obtain a letter of recomendation from the employer, if you can, which is dated AFTER the accident.

Save insurance reports, which are just as important as any FAA or NTSB documentation. This may also be more difficult to obtain.

Is your career over? Probably not. How you deal with things now is the deciding factor. Good luck!
What Avbug said!!
When you do have interviews, be very forthright and honest about what happened. Don't hide anything, even if you were to blame or let go from the company. Tell 'em what happened and what you learned, like Avbug said. Don't BLAME anybody or act like someone screwed you over. This is what airlines want to see: honesty, integrity, and how you've grown from an experience like that.
Remember, if you don't tell them, and they find it on your background check (which they will), you're done...outta there.

A guy in my class didn't disclose something that involved a lawsuit where he was found not guilty and the charges dismissed. He didn't disclose it because he thought that since the charges were dropped, it didn't matter...WRONG!!! He was terminated after ground school & IOE (that's how long it took for it to come back on the background check) on the basis that he wasn't completely honest and forthright on his application & interview.

good luck!!
Accidents and 709 (609) Rides

You have to disclose the complete story. You have to answer "yes" if the app asks if you've ever been involved in any accidents or incidents. You will be asked about it at an interview, and you have to be prepared to put a happy face on it. That means that you explain the incident dispassionately, take responsibility for the incident, and state that you have learned from it.

Not only do you have to disclose the complete story, you have to know the complete story. After the dust clears order your airman file from the FAA and download a copy of any NTSB report. You have a right to these documents and need them to know what others have said about you. You need the same information that others can get about you to ensure a level playing field. Review the information and construct a statement that is congruent with it.

The airlines want saints and there are plenty out there. On the other hand, most people have erred once or twice in their lives. You haven't lived much if you haven't made a mistake or done something wrong. All anyone can do is do his best.

Best of luck to you.
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I want to thank everyone who has responded. I agree with everyone-disclose everything. I though just because I didn't get violated that I would be ok-not true. Yes, they can and will find all info. Their are companies they hire to do the searching and that is their only job. What happened to me could happen to anyone. I hit some low lying fog 60' off the deck, initiated a go-around, but by the time I got it going my gear had clipped a 45' powerline. This all happened 3/10 of a mile from the rnwy. I had no reason to believe I could not land safely. It all happened so quick. I came away from the accident wandering what the heck had happened. When you fly for a living and do it everyday, you do run the risk of having something happen. Does it mean I am not a competent pilot-no, just means I got handed something off the crazy rack. I accept responsibiltiy and do want to continue flying. Some people will say it's over, others who have experienced ,say it isn't. Once again I appreciate the feedback.
Thank You.
I know of one gentleman that ran a Piper out of fuel, parked it in several pieces in a field. Later lost an engine on a twin Cessna in LIFR, and wrapped it into a ball as well. 8 or so interviews later got hired, now an RJ captain. Anything's possible.
You can also request the "docket" from the NTSB Public Relations Office. I'm still waiting on my whole docket, but the lady I talked to helped me out by providing me a table of contents (TOC) and in it it listed the NTSB report (which anyone can get off the web) as well as the FAA report (about 2 pgs for me) and the State Police report.

I'm not sure of the correct NTSB Public Inquiry number, but PM me if you need it.

You can also have an accident removed from your records after several years, if there was no violation and I believe no injuries. The accident will still be in the database, but your pilot certificate number will be removed and any searches initiated via your certificate number will yield no data. If someone really wanted to dig, they could find your name under a Freedom of Information Act search, but it is rather unlikely that any employer would go through that hassle.

Here is the address to initiate the removal:

Aviation Data Systems Branch
PO Box 25082
Oklahoma City, OK 73125

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