FES-equipped gliders are relatively new and unfamiliar to other airfield users who may not appreciate the dangers of the flush seated, self-deploying, fast turning and solid propeller blades on the nose of the glider. In addition to any precautions described in the aircraft flight manual, these points can be helpful:
- Whether or not you fly a FES equipped glider, always treat a FES propeller as ‘live’.
- Insist that helpers or onlookers always keep clear of the propeller.
- Tow out with the motor disarmed, eg the key removed if there is one, and any prop-guard in place.
- Don’t touch the FES switches when anyone is near the front of the glider.
- People are interested in new technology. Don’t allow them to ‘fiddle’ with the FES switches.
- If taking an aerotow or winch launch in an FES-equipped glider, make a point of advising those hooking of the FES installation and insist that they approach the hook from behind the cockpit to keep clear of the propeller and its potential arc of travel.
- If self-launching in a FES-equipped glider, keep the canopy open until you have completed your pre-flight checks and are ready to start, then loudly call “clear prop” before closing the canopy.
- If someone helps with ground handling after landing a FES-equipped glider, make a point of advising them of the FES installation and to remain clear of the propeller and its potential arc of travel.
- As a FES operator, consider how you can minimise the risk to others on the ground, including by disconnecting the batteries. Source: ‚British Gliding Association‚.