COPA Flights
As you will read in this month’s Chairman’s Perch, the success of our organization and
for us to fulfill our mission relies on a cohesive alignment of all of our parts. COPA Flights
(called “Clubs COPA” in Quebec) have been around for almost as long as the
association. Our COPA Flight #1 of Guelph Ontario was founded in 1964 and since then,
we have grown to close to two-hundred all across the country. Our Flights are a
significant asset of our association. Though some are extremely active and vibrant in
their community, others are just on the brink of closing and barely have any activities. As
I mentioned many times before, our Flights are the conduit to our members and the
communication tool to lead the way, spread the word and make us stronger across the
country. This is where you get your voices heard, this is where COPA members have
their say, this is where everyone is on equal footing. Carter and/or myself are again
going out this year to do Flights consultations to get the pulse and hear how we can
make our association better and make better use of our local foundations, our Flights.

406 ELTs:
While we are waiting new regulations, why not review your installation and oh… turn it
on!
Many studies have come out about the drastically poor record of 406MHz ELTs. We sort
of take that for granted, after all that we have seen over the years and as a push-back
campaign from many organizations and even us, COPA. We also know that Transport
Canada has been looking at mandating these ELTs for the last few years, but nothing
has come out yet in the regulations and if so, it should be a few years before we need to
comply. And there will be a race between newer technologies (ADS-B / solid-state gswitches/Transponders) and these antiquated mechanical g-switch gizmos. In the
meantime we know that, like myself, about 50% of our members have now equipped
themselves with these new 406 MHz ELTs “just in case”. This is for you.
A long-time COPA member and friend of mine who is an avionics specialist and purist in
all he does, has often tried to shed light on the fact that these 406 ELTs may not be so
bad, that their poor record is mainly caused by human factors. They are just not properly
installed by unknowledgeable individuals or not even turned on. In fact, when I got mine
installed, I compared the installation diagram with what I saw on my plane and I had a
hard time matching the two. Take a look at your ELT and the way it’s installed and ask
you AME how it corresponds to the TSO installation if you have any doubts, your
survival may depend on it. If you have read the TSB report about the mid-air in St-Hubert
near Montreal, both ELTs were actually in the OFF position! So go ahead and take a
good look at your installation, make sure it is on and test it via email as you should.