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Old 8th Sep 2011, 14:36
  #4 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 945
It's not just 737s either. In fact you probably couldn't name an airplane where something similar isn't possible or hasn't been done by someone somewhere at some time. Those old autopilot and yaw damper "paddle" switches located adjacent to each other on '70s and '80s era Collins A/P controllers? Many a PF who called for the Y/D on at 400' surprised by the suddenly engaged A/P that doesn't want to go the same direction as the pilot does. Fire bottle switches? I got plenty of work replacing discharged fire bottles when I was a mechanic. Ever throw the wrong switch during an abnormal drill in the sim? Yep, been there and done that too! (a better place to learn such a lesson than in the plane)

Some pilots (and mechanics) learn early on that you really must stop and think before flipping a switch, no matter how mundane the task might seem. Some learn later than others.

Oops indeed!

But the point that better thought out ergonomics can reduce errors in this area is well taken.
westhawk is offline