News | April 10, 2024

Grampaw Pettibone

By Grampaw Pettibone

An instructor pilot was scheduled for three flights in one day in a T-34C. Upon completion of the first flight, the aircraft landed at home field as planned and was refueled. During the preflight inspection of the Turbo-Mentor for the next sortie, the instructor discovered fluid on the cowling. He asked maintenance to check for a possible leak. A mechanic looked over the engine area and stated there was no problem and the aircraft was ready for launch.
The pilot took off and flew the next flight to another air base. Upon landing, the pilot was advised to call his home air station regarding a possible problem. He did and was told the mechanic who had checked out the fluid on the cowling was missing his flashlight and that the instructor needed to examine the engine area for the missing item.
The pilot looked inside the engine compartment for the flashlight but was unable to locate it. The mechanic recommended the pilot check again and pay special attention to the area above the engine. The pilot returned to the aircraft and this time found the flashlight. It had become jammed against the overhead of the engine section. It was removed and the pilot continued with a safe flight.