Doug Toppin's Blog

My thoughts on technology and other stuff

Keep Your Work Area (and Cockpit) Clean

Interesting article on a rag causing damage to a flight control system at

This helps demonstrate the importance of pre and post flight checks for “stuff” that is unsecured or left behind which might later cause a control issue. I have read on a couple of occasions things like water bottles ending up behind a rudder pedal and a personal camera jamming a side stick. One interesting note in the article is that the rag was not one commonly used at the maintenance facility. Having common and potentially numbered parts seems like a beneficial part of the process for recognizing things that are unexpected when finishing maintenance activities. The value of noticing things like metal fragments that may indicate unexpected wear cannot be overstressed. All in all this is an interesting article about the real world of maintaining and using aircraft that are heavily used.