To those who have seen it before...a bit of a non story really...I have seen some excellent 14 yo solo pilots and plenty of rubbish older solo pilots...as gpn01 posted - it is all about individual skill and maturity...age is irrelevant,although obviously one has to have a minimum age !!
And as mechta posted
From what I have seen, the best way to make responsible youngsters is to give them responsibility.
And that is the shame about modern times - responsibility is not readily given to people...big shame -people usually respond well to it.
Pace, although a power plane crashing onto somebody's home or school may cause casualties, a glider crash is highly unlikely to injure anyone on the ground....the only two occasions I can recall in the UK that a glider has caused a fatality to a person on the ground the glider had not crashed.....but was being flown irresponsibly by a highly qualified adult.
Young car drivers, on the other hand, are more frequently lethal.
The can fly can't drive question is one I have considered and from my observations there are numerous possibilities for it being acceptable on safety grounds.
1) Flying attracts those with a greater level of maturity and is something the individual desires for themselves. It is done within a controlled environment and each flight is authorised and monitored.
2) Crucially flying is also done without the distraction and influence of back seat driver friends.
3) The training is more comprehensive than driver training.
4) Responsibility comes from the danger being much more apparent than in driving.
As much as I agree that at first sight it seems illogical I can't find any reason to stop 14 year olds gliding and interestingly I think it would be disastrous to allow them to drive. I may even go as far as to say 17 is too young to drive.
Mary I was once nearly decapitated by a radio controlled glider with a 12 foot wingspan ; ) No just an observation on how we refer to young people of that age as children when it suits and as responsible individuals when it doesn't! In law young people of that age are treated differently in courts of law and we all know the attitude to young drivers. My own son was flying with me at 12 years of age and was flying for Easy Jet at the age of 20 in the right seat of a 737! After going through a CTC selection and fast tracking! Nevertheless I think 16 is about right but find it all a bit double standards on considering 14 year olds as mature enough to fly solo in aircraft but not to be responsible for their actions in courts of law and many other things!
Pace, I'm surprised I thought you would have been in favour on 14 year olds flying.
I don't see any similarities with driving at all. Haven't thought about legal responsibilty though. I don't get your point re it being double standards, I think the errror is in somehow trying to equate the two?
Consider how 14 year olds fly in isolation of analogies and see if you still feel the same, I can't think of any good reason not to permit it.
Mmmm? BB dont really think I have strong feelings on it! More bewildered at the different attitudes in law to when someone is classified as legally responsible. Obviously one person at age 14 might be adult enough while another at 17 may be immature but laws are not created for individuals but masses.
its tough to hit someone with a remote control glider-dont underestimate the level of skill involved. There's no go-around and you have to watch the glider and keep an eye on the bloke you're trying to decapitate in case they are looking out for the model and jump out of the way. You need height, speed, stealth, timing.
I crashed one into a sheep on Ivinghoe Beacon once. The "baaa" it made sounded like "irresponsible baaaaastard".
mary, thats the first time anyone has referred to messing about in an airliner as a proper job. If there was a blow in the bag test for maturity, a maturityzer if you like, I would consistently be miles under the legal limit for flying as would the majority of other pilots. Send every kid solo in a glider - stop the little gits sniffing glue and tagging trains. Send them freefall parachuting by law. 14th birthday, push them out the back of a Herc and only the sensible ones will live.
The annoying thing about sending kids solo in gliders is that they are really good at it and have amazing coordination and learn fast and generally do things very well which is irritating for all us crusty old duffers. As a penalty we make them splice ropes and cut grass and sweep hangars. Its an envy tax.
I'm one of the ones based at Lasham and although it sounds like us young'uns are being let out into freedom and to fly where we want it's not the case.
Until 16 the minimum when we are able to apply and recieve the Bronze + XC Endorsement we have to stay within close gliding range of the airfield no matter if we have 100 solo hours whenever or more so there are still limitations. But certainly has worked wonders when otherwise I would be being P2 for the laws sake.
Hi, this solo at 14 rule came 40 years to late for me, I was in the ATC at the age of 13 and was told I could not fly gliders, even though I had swotted up on everything glider related, and could explain how the double pill Cosim variometer worked.
So not detered I left the ATC and took up ACU motor-cycle racing instead. Motor sport has long allowed junior competitors, and I am sure this new rule for gliding will be just the wake-up call that is needed for gliding and GA in the 21st centuary.