If you have ever wondered how professional pilots keep their skills up-to-date and are evaluated on their skills, Tracy of the Around the Pattern blog has posted two detailed entries (Part 1 and Part 2) on his blog covering his four days of thorough recurrent training that he is required to undergo as a commercial airline pilot.
Day 1 was a series of computer-based training modules and tests on every conceivable subject from de-icing to handling dangerous goods while day 2 was started with a lecture about the use of handcuffs (a sign of the times…) followed by modules about aircraft systems and mechanics and finally flight simulator time and more tests. Day 3 of training was referred to as Maneuver Validation (MV) and consisted of a series of maneuvers on a flight simulator that pilots hope to never have to perform while actually flying while day 4 was referred to as the LOE or Line-Oriented Evaluation where a crew in a simulator had to deal with a series of semi-typical malfunctions.
The post is well worth a read and gives an appreciation of the amount of work required to stay up-to-date as a professional pilot.
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