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What Helicopters of America Did

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The following is a letter from the Director of Operations at Helicopters of America, following a staff consensus. Pilots and others will make their individual postings as they desire.

 

Helicopters of America is known to have an excellent safety record because we only hire good pilots. These are pilots that can demonstrate they are capable of making quick, effective and safe decisions in the air, as well as demonstrate an aptitude that comports them well in the operation of a helicopter. We also tend to hire pilots who demonstrate an ability to work well with others, as well as accept guidance and criticism.

 

We are flying helicopters, and that requires the utmost attention to detail. We are not flipping burgers, where a missed slice of pickle on the final assembly results in no consequence. This is serious business, and a missed anything in a helicopter can kill you – as well as any innocent person depending on your skills.

 

Rob Schapiro was never asked to work at Helicopters of America. He was asked to come to our offices for an interview; following a successful interview and check ride, we would be likely to hire him.

 

What should have required only a single check ride to prove one’s capabilities became two, three and four. After four check rides, Rob offered to pay for additional check rides … two of them … which brought the total number to six. He showed little control over the aircraft, and demonstrated poor decision-making skills.

 

Most flight training academies will not continue to offer a potential hire continued check rides. I, personally, took a liking to Rob, and wanted to extend the best opportunity I could, and that’s not typical. I even told him each time what he was going to be doing, exactly what was expected for each check ride, to the point.

 

Then there were the written exams … we him gave three written exams. We graded the first CFI exam, and Rob scored 61.2%. He answered 37 out of 60 questions correctly. On the second and third-stage exams he scored 78% and 83%, respectively. We kept giving Rob a break, because he was showing improvement in some areas.

 

On auto rotations, Rob was given four autos to perform, and he overshot the landing area, each time, by 350 feet. In one scenario he was asked to make a judgment about making an emergency landing. His first decision was to land in a small back-yard, adjacent to a lake and an open field. The yard was large enough to accommodate an R/C helicopter, but not a real ship.

 

Any competent pilot considering safety first would have landed in the field, or barring any time to make such a maneuver, would have ditched the helicopter in the lake behind the house. Based on his inconsistencies, it was my suggestion to Craig – the instructor with Rob – that he throttle-chop on his next flight, even warning Rob about this. There’s nothing like giving an unwrapped present.

 

As for sitting around the office – that was Rob’s choice. Everyone in this industry knows you get paid when you fly or do ground lessons. This was explained to Mr. Schapiro. Nobody pays $20 per hour to be graced with another man’s presence, unless there is another agenda.

 

We are a busy school, and our flight instructors are not here to hold anyone’s hand. Self-motivating individuals go a long way in this industry; those who have limitations requiring additional training can take the initiative and ask questions, utilize our simulator to practice specific scenarios, make themselves available to texts and online material, use our CATS testing room to challenge their skill level, all while our other pilots are busy teaching their students. Rob knew these things, but he chose to listen to streaming music and videos, instead.

 

Rob told us he taught eight students, and tutored many others in ground instruction. How this is accomplished after accumulating only 340 flight hours is baffling to us. His résumé lists his previous employment with Northern Helicopters; and when we contacted his former employer, we learned Rob had only four students.

 

All four of these students, we were told, walked out after their first lesson. We were told these prospects were afraid to fly with Rob. Two of these students never returned to the school; two others did return on the promise they be assigned new instructors. The staff at the school told us Rob was let go because of his poor decision-making abilities. We only learned of this following his arrival.

 

He also had told us he had been an officer in the Marines. His résumé shows he was in officer candidate school; our background check showed he washed out. That sounds like a Semper Fi ass-kicking waiting to happen.

 

Here is a subject requiring clarification: HOA is not related to Pompano Helicopters. Where that idea originated, we have no conception. Our CEO, Darlene, has been the head of this company since it was conceived; the Director of Operations is not the owner; he never was.

 

What we can tell you, in the years that we’ve all been here, is that safety comes first. We have not had any problems because we do not hire people like Rob Schapiro.

 

You talk about how you called for nine days, after you departed, and nobody took your phone call. To this date, our logs show no calls from you. Our PBX would have kept a record. If you want, you may post a record of your cell phone bill; we recommend cross-referencing the dates to make certain you select the correct one – and no using Photoshop or Acrobat Pro to make changes to the image.

 

We were always taught, it’s a coin: We’re heads, you’re tails; but it’s still a coin.

 

You are unable to control the aircraft; you’re unable to make good judgment calls. You’re unable to communicate, although you do write very well. We suggest using the same energy you apply to the pen, in a herculean effort, to become a better pilot.

 

You’re just an accident waiting to happen. This is a small community, and you will encounter these pilots again. Many men working FBO’s have been surprised to encounter their own demons down the line; don’t create demons you don’t want haunting you. I promise you that.

 

Also, be careful what you say online, and what you print. From what we’ve seen in this posting, HOA is pretty certain to have a slander suit; particularly when a person with only 340 flight hours decides he knows more than me, who has over 18,563 flight hours in helicopters. I have been PIC in 19 aircraft, and have over 3,200 flight hours in the Robinson R-22, alone. And trust me, I learn new things every day, but not from someone like you.

 

As chief pilot and director of operations, one should not challenge me openly, unless they are on equal footing regarding experience and training. Rob, you did this, running to the book each time. The book is a guide; it is not a real-life situation. But even after these tirades, I gave you two additional chances at check rides, per your own request and your offer pay for those check rides.

 

We had already given four check rides, and Rob said he was nervous each time.

 

Just one additional point: We do not fly helicopters with the doors on the aircraft. The hinges on the doors are usually not put in place while the helicopters are on the ramp, because we only cover the helicopter while it’s on the ground, in the event of inclement weather. If you had taken the time to learn this, to brush up, instead of jumping to conclusions, you might still be here.

 

Anyone who is aware of weather in South Florida knows the climate changes at the drop of a dime, hence the old expression, “If you don’t like the weather in Florida, wait a few minutes.”

 

You said our mechanics were great guys, but you bashed them regarding oil leaks, and fuel gauge problems. We have squawk sheets.

 

I am a pilot first, and I would not request any of the pilots to fly an aircraft that was unsafe; nor would I make them fly a ship I would not fly. You’re totally off-base. We are a Factory Authorized Robinson Service Center, and we have four outstanding mechanics.

 

As far as the comment on the aircraft having only the push-to-talk switches, versus your VOX, your total flight hours show 238 hours in an R22. I don’t know whether you know the difference between a Beta and a Beta II, but only the Beta II’s have a VOX. We operate both, but you were never in a Beta II. Any pilot worth his salt knows this. Your posting only serves to underscore what we are telling you: You lack experience, judgment and the ability to take direction. You are confrontational and incapable of exercising restraint.

 

At your present level of skill, and with the attitude you possess, we recommend nobody hire you until you have matured, and your skill levels are sufficient to warrant that hire.

 

Director of Ops

Helicopters of America

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Robert-

This is just my two cents and you certainly have the right to express the fact that you feel wronged by the situation. However, I dont think you're doing yourself any favors. There are plenty of flight school owners, cfi's, chiefs, and students on this site. You still need a job. How do you think an owner or cheif is going to read your resume after following this thread? They know that you apparently didnt pass a flight interview once, you threatened legal action afterwards, and you generally defamed the reputation of the school(waranted or not). Will they be willing to give you a second shot over someone else? I would not and I suspect others reading this may not either. I just googled your name and this came up...expect your future students to do the same. How will they react to this? It is very hard to remove this kind of thing from the internet and while it may seem like a good idea now out of righteous indignation it may follow you after you've moved on from this experience. I am not making a judgement as to whether you are right or wrong about your indignation. It is very difficult for anyone to make a fair judgement based on an internet posting, especially when both sides make a compelling argument. Perhaps a milder and anonymous rebuke of HoA would have been more prudent. Again, I'm sypathetic to your situation and I do think you probably were wronged by being strung out like that and not told you were being tested, but I dont think its wise to follow the course of action you're currently on for the sake of your career.

Good Luck.

 

 

Good advice and well said.

 

Kelly

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I discussed this issue with John Amber. He didn't advise me that I wouldn't be paid for desk time until the Monday before I was "let go". However, I still gave 4.7 hours of ground instruction to a student for which Helicopters of America refuses to pay for. Also, and maybe this is just my opinion, but I believe that if they weren't going to pay me for desk time, they should not require me to come in on days that there was nothing for me to do.

 

 

It doesn't sound like Helicopters of America did this to you. It sounds like you did this to yourself.

 

Welcome to the world of the Flight Instructor. You will spend many more hours sitting at your desk at the school, than you will teaching. This is part of teaching, all types of teaching not just flight instruction. Most instructors are not paid unless they are actively teaching (ground or flight). If you didn't realize this or take the time to clarify your pay and benefit details BEFORE you moved across the country, and rented an apartment, then you are at fault. Did you really think that you were just going to show up and they would toss you a few students and put you behind the controls of an aircraft, without checking you out?

 

Remember this, "No one cares about your career as much as you do." Always find out the details BEFORE you commit yourself to a potential situation like this.

 

Unfortunately "Common Sense" isn't all that common.

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Robert-

This is just my two cents and you certainly have the right to express the fact that you feel wronged by the situation. However, I dont think you're doing yourself any favors. There are plenty of flight school owners, cfi's, chiefs, and students on this site. You still need a job. How do you think an owner or cheif is going to read your resume after following this thread? They know that you apparently didnt pass a flight interview once, you threatened legal action afterwards, and you generally defamed the reputation of the school(waranted or not). Will they be willing to give you a second shot over someone else? I would not and I suspect others reading this may not either. I just googled your name and this came up...expect your future students to do the same. How will they react to this? It is very hard to remove this kind of thing from the internet and while it may seem like a good idea now out of righteous indignation it may follow you after you've moved on from this experience. I am not making a judgement as to whether you are right or wrong about your indignation. It is very difficult for anyone to make a fair judgement based on an internet posting, especially when both sides make a compelling argument. Perhaps a milder and anonymous rebuke of HoA would have been more prudent. Again, I'm sypathetic to your situation and I do think you probably were wronged by being strung out like that and not told you were being tested, but I dont think its wise to follow the course of action you're currently on for the sake of your career.

Good Luck.

 

Thank you for the advice. (I do mean this sincerely.) I realized, prior to my posting, that I was taking a career risk which could destroy my chances of getting a job in the helicopter industry. Throughout my life on this planet, I've tried to take something out of every experience in my life. During my time in the Marine Corps I learned that sometimes it is more important to sacrifice yourself for the greater good of the group. If I am never able to get another helicopter job for the rest of my life, but at least I am able to prevent one flight instructor from making the same mistake I did, I feel that my actions were worthwhile.

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Did you really think that you were just going to show up and they would toss you a few students and put you behind the controls of an aircraft, without checking you out?

 

I did expect a checkride, however I didn't expect that (1) I would have to pay for it and (2) that I would be told that it wasn't "good enough". I had worked as a flight instructor for three months with students. I was also offered a job as a flight instructor by the very DPE who tested me for my CFI and CFII. The only reason that I didn't take it (against my better judgment) was because John Amber called me first and I don't believe in stringing people (or companies) along to hold out for something better.

Edited by Robert Schapiro

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I think Mr. Schapiro didn't do him a favour by his post. As everybody should know there are always two sides of the story. And now the whole helicopter industrie knows a part of it. And a lot of people know about it. It is a good thing to stand up for his rights and fight but sometimes it is just smarter to shut up for example in this case. No everybody who reads this knows something is wrong with that guy.

 

Who would I choose the guy with a big negative post on vertical called Robert Schapiro or the guy I just have a resume from???

 

Well I know some people down there at pompano and I will find out what really happened.

 

 

My advise to Robert is: think about what you are doing in future way more carefully it is a small industrie and everybody knows everybody and things like this spread around very fast.

 

This Forum is like a resume at least when you use your real name. In my opinion not always a smart choice either.

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I did expect a checkride, however I didn't expect that (1) I would have to pay for it and (2) that I would be told that it wasn't "good enough". I had worked as a flight instructor for three months with students. I was also offered a job as a flight instructor by the very DPE who tested me for my CFI and CFII. The only reason that I didn't take it (against my better judgment) was because John Amber called me first and I don't believe in stringing people (or companies) along to hold out for something better.

 

I believe you stated you only paid $352 for the flight time and you took six total checkrides correct? The company paid for all the other checkrides correct? From your post, HOA paid for the first 5 checkrides out of their pocket.

 

And as far as Slavery, you were not held and made to work against your will, so that doesn't apply. CFI work in general is extremely low paying. CFI's hang out at the FBO as required all day, and are lucky to get 2.3 billable hours as others have stated. The benefit of the CFI is you are getting flight time that someone else is paying for, and you get paid at the same time to risk your life with a new student pilot. God bless you CFI's!

 

I'm not beating a dead horse here, but what happened to your other job offer? Is it still available? I understand that you are frustrated, but I think you might be better suited using your energy trying to get that job, or look elsewhere.

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I believe you stated you only paid $352 for the flight time and you took six total checkrides correct? The company paid for all the other checkrides correct? From your post, HOA paid for the first 5 checkrides out of their pocket.

 

And as far as Slavery, you were not held and made to work against your will, so that doesn't apply. CFI work in general is extremely low paying. CFI's hang out at the FBO as required all day, and are lucky to get 2.3 billable hours as others have stated. The benefit of the CFI is you are getting flight time that someone else is paying for, and you get paid at the same time to risk your life with a new student pilot. God bless you CFI's!

 

I'm not beating a dead horse here, but what happened to your other job offer? Is it still available? I understand that you are frustrated, but I think you might be better suited using your energy trying to get that job, or look elsewhere.

 

Yes, let me clarify, as I do not want to compromise my integrity over a dead horse. I did not pay for all of the checkrides out of pocket, however, after I was told that my flying was good and that I was prepared to start flying with students, I was still charged for another checkride to "learn the airspace". I was also led to believe that if I spent another 10 hours working on autos with their instructors that they would reconsider me.

 

As for the "slavery" issue, maybe I am using an extreme word to describe how I feel. I don't want to blow this out of proportion. I merely am trying to express that I was told to come in every day, all day, and made believe that my job depended on it. I was not told until very late on that I was not being paid for time that I was not with students, and even the time that I was with students - I was not compensated for.

 

The other job offers that I received have already been filled. I am still visiting local flight schools and handing out resumes, however with the recent closing of Silver State and 200-some instructors hitting the market, there don't seem to be any openings for low-time flight instructors.

Edited by Robert Schapiro

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First off HoA should have never made a promise to hire over the phone. What they should have offered was an opportunity for Robert to inteview with them and perform a checkride BEFORE making an offer. When you apply for any other type of job they don't promise you the position over the phone without an interview or multiple ones at that FIRST. HoA should have never got this guy pumped up for this postition and have him move down there on a phone call without the proper interview / checkride process.

 

Just my take..

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I feel for ya bro I've worked a commission based job for 15 years, I'm REQUIRED to be at work from 8 - 5 however I'm only compensated if I'm "working" much like a CFI job. If you consult with the Wage and Labor laws it definetly is an illegal practice but only if the amount of hours worked divided by the amount you made is less then minimum wage. I once made a call to the wage and labor board and an unscrupulous former employer put my last paycheck in the mail that day. They can't not pay you it is illegal. Its really simple.... they can give you what they owe you or have the wage and labor board investigate them. I don't care what any of ya'll have said, when something ain't right it ain't right and tucking your tail between your legs and taking it up the poop chute shouldn't be a prerequisite to getting hired in this business. It sounds as though they carefully chose their words to lead you to believe that there was hope for a job, it also sounds as though they gave you more then one chance that however does not preclude them for paying you what you are owed!!! but beware some industries like trucking are loopholed outta of stuff like overtime and whatnot, I dunno about the aviation industry.

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The following is a letter from the Director of Operations at Helicopters of America, following a staff consensus. Pilots and others will make their individual postings as they desire.

 

Helicopters of America is known to have an excellent safety record because we only hire good pilots. These are pilots that can demonstrate they are capable of making quick, effective and safe decisions in the air, as well as demonstrate an aptitude that comports them well in the operation of a helicopter. We also tend to hire pilots who demonstrate an ability to work well with others, as well as accept guidance and criticism.

 

We are flying helicopters, and that requires the utmost attention to detail. We are not flipping burgers, where a missed slice of pickle on the final assembly results in no consequence. This is serious business, and a missed anything in a helicopter can kill you – as well as any innocent person depending on your skills.

 

Rob Schapiro was never asked to work at Helicopters of America. He was asked to come to our offices for an interview; following a successful interview and check ride, we would be likely to hire him.

 

What should have required only a single check ride to prove one’s capabilities became two, three and four. After four check rides, Rob offered to pay for additional check rides … two of them … which brought the total number to six. He showed little control over the aircraft, and demonstrated poor decision-making skills.

 

Most flight training academies will not continue to offer a potential hire continued check rides. I, personally, took a liking to Rob, and wanted to extend the best opportunity I could, and that’s not typical. I even told him each time what he was going to be doing, exactly what was expected for each check ride, to the point.

 

Then there were the written exams … we him gave three written exams. We graded the first CFI exam, and Rob scored 61.2%. He answered 37 out of 60 questions correctly. On the second and third-stage exams he scored 78% and 83%, respectively. We kept giving Rob a break, because he was showing improvement in some areas.

 

On auto rotations, Rob was given four autos to perform, and he overshot the landing area, each time, by 350 feet. In one scenario he was asked to make a judgment about making an emergency landing. His first decision was to land in a small back-yard, adjacent to a lake and an open field. The yard was large enough to accommodate an R/C helicopter, but not a real ship.

 

Any competent pilot considering safety first would have landed in the field, or barring any time to make such a maneuver, would have ditched the helicopter in the lake behind the house. Based on his inconsistencies, it was my suggestion to Craig – the instructor with Rob – that he throttle-chop on his next flight, even warning Rob about this. There’s nothing like giving an unwrapped present.

 

As for sitting around the office – that was Rob’s choice. Everyone in this industry knows you get paid when you fly or do ground lessons. This was explained to Mr. Schapiro. Nobody pays $20 per hour to be graced with another man’s presence, unless there is another agenda.

 

We are a busy school, and our flight instructors are not here to hold anyone’s hand. Self-motivating individuals go a long way in this industry; those who have limitations requiring additional training can take the initiative and ask questions, utilize our simulator to practice specific scenarios, make themselves available to texts and online material, use our CATS testing room to challenge their skill level, all while our other pilots are busy teaching their students. Rob knew these things, but he chose to listen to streaming music and videos, instead.

 

Rob told us he taught eight students, and tutored many others in ground instruction. How this is accomplished after accumulating only 340 flight hours is baffling to us. His résumé lists his previous employment with Northern Helicopters; and when we contacted his former employer, we learned Rob had only four students.

 

All four of these students, we were told, walked out after their first lesson. We were told these prospects were afraid to fly with Rob. Two of these students never returned to the school; two others did return on the promise they be assigned new instructors. The staff at the school told us Rob was let go because of his poor decision-making abilities. We only learned of this following his arrival.

 

He also had told us he had been an officer in the Marines. His résumé shows he was in officer candidate school; our background check showed he washed out. That sounds like a Semper Fi ass-kicking waiting to happen.

 

Here is a subject requiring clarification: HOA is not related to Pompano Helicopters. Where that idea originated, we have no conception. Our CEO, Darlene, has been the head of this company since it was conceived; the Director of Operations is not the owner; he never was.

 

What we can tell you, in the years that we’ve all been here, is that safety comes first. We have not had any problems because we do not hire people like Rob Schapiro.

 

You talk about how you called for nine days, after you departed, and nobody took your phone call. To this date, our logs show no calls from you. Our PBX would have kept a record. If you want, you may post a record of your cell phone bill; we recommend cross-referencing the dates to make certain you select the correct one – and no using Photoshop or Acrobat Pro to make changes to the image.

 

We were always taught, it’s a coin: We’re heads, you’re tails; but it’s still a coin.

 

You are unable to control the aircraft; you’re unable to make good judgment calls. You’re unable to communicate, although you do write very well. We suggest using the same energy you apply to the pen, in a herculean effort, to become a better pilot.

 

You’re just an accident waiting to happen. This is a small community, and you will encounter these pilots again. Many men working FBO’s have been surprised to encounter their own demons down the line; don’t create demons you don’t want haunting you. I promise you that.

 

Also, be careful what you say online, and what you print. From what we’ve seen in this posting, HOA is pretty certain to have a slander suit; particularly when a person with only 340 flight hours decides he knows more than me, who has over 18,563 flight hours in helicopters. I have been PIC in 19 aircraft, and have over 3,200 flight hours in the Robinson R-22, alone. And trust me, I learn new things every day, but not from someone like you.

 

As chief pilot and director of operations, one should not challenge me openly, unless they are on equal footing regarding experience and training. Rob, you did this, running to the book each time. The book is a guide; it is not a real-life situation. But even after these tirades, I gave you two additional chances at check rides, per your own request and your offer pay for those check rides.

 

We had already given four check rides, and Rob said he was nervous each time.

 

Just one additional point: We do not fly helicopters with the doors on the aircraft. The hinges on the doors are usually not put in place while the helicopters are on the ramp, because we only cover the helicopter while it’s on the ground, in the event of inclement weather. If you had taken the time to learn this, to brush up, instead of jumping to conclusions, you might still be here.

 

Anyone who is aware of weather in South Florida knows the climate changes at the drop of a dime, hence the old expression, “If you don’t like the weather in Florida, wait a few minutes.”

 

You said our mechanics were great guys, but you bashed them regarding oil leaks, and fuel gauge problems. We have squawk sheets.

 

I am a pilot first, and I would not request any of the pilots to fly an aircraft that was unsafe; nor would I make them fly a ship I would not fly. You’re totally off-base. We are a Factory Authorized Robinson Service Center, and we have four outstanding mechanics.

 

As far as the comment on the aircraft having only the push-to-talk switches, versus your VOX, your total flight hours show 238 hours in an R22. I don’t know whether you know the difference between a Beta and a Beta II, but only the Beta II’s have a VOX. We operate both, but you were never in a Beta II. Any pilot worth his salt knows this. Your posting only serves to underscore what we are telling you: You lack experience, judgment and the ability to take direction. You are confrontational and incapable of exercising restraint.

 

At your present level of skill, and with the attitude you possess, we recommend nobody hire you until you have matured, and your skill levels are sufficient to warrant that hire.

 

Director of Ops

Helicopters of America

 

Rob, maybe you should think about what happend during the last couple of days/ weeks and how that might have influenced your reputation in the helicopter industry....but maybe this is not the right job for you.

 

 

Good luck for your future

 

Falko

Edited by Falko

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The following is a letter from the Director of Operations at Helicopters of America, following a staff consensus. Pilots and others will make their individual postings as they desire.

 

Director of Ops

Helicopters of America

 

Guess this post had to be approved, hence that's why many missed it earlier today.

 

Pretty much says it all.

 

And like I said before in other posts, even based upon what Shapiro had written, it was obvious that HOA spent considerable time and expense trying to get him through.

 

john

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I agree, looks settled to me

 

 

Just my .02; Robert- I would let this go, it could get worse....

Edited by DEMO

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As for flying over the water or land in a single engine helo, unless the aircraft is specifically fitted for overwater flights (i.e. floats, etc), I would remain within autorotational distance of the shoreline. I'd rather land on the sand then the waves crashing off the Florida coast. For autos into the trees letting the tail rotor and boom absorb the shock, that sounds just plain stupid. As once your tail rotor hits you will lose tail rotor authority. I'd aim for a 0 speed auto just above the trees and settle straight down and let the fuselage and main rotors absorb the energy as you settle through the branches. That is just my take, any other suggestions out there?

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The following is a letter from the Director of Operations at Helicopters of America, following a staff consensus. Pilots and others will make their individual postings as they desire....

 

Director of Ops

Helicopters of America

 

 

I'm still on the "flare the tail into the ground" thing. Did Rob just make that up? I mean, I don't have 18,563 flight hours but if you asked me if I had ever heard of that technique I wouldn't argue with you. I would just say "Uhh...No?" and consider you crazy from now on.

 

Edit....

Damn man, if you ever want to get a job lose that web site quick. If I get a resume the first thing I do is Google the person to see if there is any dirt on them.

Edited by tvman345

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Thank you for the advice. (I do mean this sincerely.) I realized, prior to my posting, that I was taking a career risk which could destroy my chances of getting a job in the helicopter industry. Throughout my life on this planet, I've tried to take something out of every experience in my life. During my time in the Marine Corps I learned that sometimes it is more important to sacrifice yourself for the greater good of the group. If I am never able to get another helicopter job for the rest of my life, but at least I am able to prevent one flight instructor from making the same mistake I did, I feel that my actions were worthwhile.

Dude, regardless of what's been said in this thread, I respect you for having become a professional flight instructor, something I never got to do, partly due to my own lack of skill: I too flunked a check ride because I hadn't flown in a couple of months, was rusty, and flew too fast (I was kind of taught to keep my speed up in Robbies!); I regret losing that job because it led me down the path to SIC tragedy, but I learned a lot from that check ride. No one had to tell me I needed more flight time, but hey, if I had that kind of money, I wouldn't have been looking for a job;). I have learned a lot from this thread, as I'm sure all those just starting out in the industry have. Please don't give up on becoming a Marine officer; that was probably the smartest thing I ever did that I can solely take credit for. The first time you give an order and a bunch of hard charging Marines take off to get it done, you realize that those young men and women would face death to accomplish the mission that you gave them. It's truly humbling. I bet getting your first student to solo would be pretty close. At the risk of sounding patronizing, though, I will leave you with one of the only Marine officer's principles that I remember and live by: know yourself and seek self improvement. I'm hoping it will pay off for me eventually.

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Here is a subject requiring clarification: HOA is not related to Pompano Helicopters. Where that idea originated, we have no conception. Our CEO, Darlene, has been the head of this company since it was conceived; the Director of Operations is not the owner; he never was.

 

Director of Ops

Helicopters of America

 

According to these sources (and more, go ahead and google it), the above statement is a blatant lie. They would probably say that HOA was formed under Darlene and Pompano Helicopters was formed under Jim. I dunno, it's pretty shady any way you look at it.

 

These links are tempermental. I recommend you google "Pompano Helicopters". The manta.com article is particularly good.

 

http://www.aero-news.net/Community/Discuss...9&Refresh=1

 

http://news.manta.com/press/description/20...85558300_1-0304

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jim_Howard,_Jr.

 

All of you people throwing Robert under the bus are pretty pathetic. I would think that some of you would have learned something from the SSH fiasco. For a few years now people have been coming on here and posting warnings about SSH, and like a bunch of lemmings the students and instructors kept pouring in. Robert gets on here and attempts to warn people about a school that he believes runs in the same vein and he gets hammered. Many of you are acting as though this scenario is just too unbelievable. Don't you all realize that about 95% of the helicopter flight schools in this country are a complete scam or a rip off at best? The reason the flight training industry is in such bad shape is because none of you want to unite and call BS. Good grief, take a stand, support each other, demand something better and with any luck these types of schools will go the way of the Dodo. Don't any of you think it's completely unprofessional for the school to respond on a public forum? Not only did they respond here, but they released private information (accurate or not) about Robert's military career. That doesn't set off anyone else's alarm??

 

I interviewed there a few years back, was offered the job and decided against it. I instructed the Chief Pilot there, and I personally believe Robert. I could care less if they post a rebuttal to this (as far as I'm concerned the above links pretty much remove any credibility they may have), I'm going to preflight, brief my med crew, and do what I do best.

 

Robert, this won't hurt your career one bit. To be honest, if I was an employer, I'd avoid hiring one of the disloyal, self righteous tools that constantly post on here. Keep sending resumes and you'll find a job. If you want my help, PM or email me, I'll do whatever I can for you.

 

67 November, you're a complete prick for posting his website on here, public or not. That's seriously bad form.

 

The rest of you people casting stones better get an idea quick. This IS a small industry, we need to come together and make it better for all of us, or ALL of us are going to be sucking down the road.

Edited by nsdqjr

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Interesting story. I feel for you and I am sure you have learned an expensive lesson. Not sure if they were going to cover your moving cost? Did they say they would pay to get your R44 training? It sounds like you might have jumped the gun a little just to take the first job that came along.

 

Now I do think that you should get paid for any labor (ground school or office work you did). Unless you were doing it for free just to get your foot in the door. Once again not sure what you worked out before you got down there.

 

I am sure they don't have the newest helicopters out there but would think that they wouldn't put themselves out to hang by the FAA by flying unsafe aircraft. I have have flown some R22's that by first look you would think it can't be airworthy, but after looking at logs and preflight it was safe and airworthy, hec even flew better than some of the new R22s.

 

I don't think it would have taken that many flights to see what your flying skills are like but they did pay for the flying so log it towards your total time. I am sure you flew to the CFI standards or else you would'nt have your ticket.

 

Take the experience from this and move on. There is a reason you didn't get the job (not because of you) and something better will come along. The aviation business is a small world, keep that in mind

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According to these sources (and more, go ahead and google it), the above statement is a blatant lie. They would probably say that HOA was formed under Darlene and Pompano Helicopters was formed under Jim. I dunno, it's pretty shady any way you look at it.

 

These links are tempermental. I recommend you google "Pompano Helicopters". The manta.com article is particularly good.

 

http://www.aero-news.net/Community/Discuss...9&Refresh=1

 

http://news.manta.com/press/description/20...85558300_1-0304

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jim_Howard,_Jr.

 

All of you people throwing Robert under the bus are pretty pathetic. I would think that some of you would have learned something from the SSH fiasco. For a few years now people have been coming on here and posting warnings about SSH, and like a bunch of lemmings the students and instructors kept pouring in. Robert gets on here and attempts to warn people about a school that he believes runs in the same vein and he gets hammered. Many of you are acting as though this scenario is just too unbelievable. Don't you all realize that about 95% of the helicopter flight schools in this country are a complete scam or a rip off at best? The reason the flight training industry is in such bad shape is because none of you want to unite and call BS. Good grief, take a stand, support each other, demand something better and with any luck these types of schools will go the way of the Dodo. Don't any of you think it's completely unprofessional for the school to respond on a public forum? Not only did they respond here, but they released private information (accurate or not) about Robert's military career. That doesn't set off anyone else's alarm??

 

I interviewed there a few years back, was offered the job and decided against it. I instructed the Chief Pilot there, and I personally believe Robert. I could care less if they post a rebuttal to this (as far as I'm concerned the above links pretty much remove any credibility they may have), I'm going to preflight, brief my med crew, and do what I do best.

 

Robert, this won't hurt your career one bit. To be honest, if I was an employer, I'd avoid hiring one of the disloyal, self righteous tools that constantly post on here. Keep sending resumes and you'll find a job. If you want my help, PM or email me, I'll do whatever I can for you.

 

67 November, you're a complete prick for posting his website on here, public or not. That's seriously bad form.

 

The rest of you people casting stones better get an idea quick. This IS a small industry, we need to come together and make it better for all of us, or ALL of us are going to be sucking down the road.

 

I have get plenty of potential students who want to fly for a living. I tell them straight up what it takes and the long road to get there. When they ask about schools such as SSH I tell them to never trust anyone who guarantees you a job. Always talk to as many professional pilots in the area (medical, news, pipeline pilots etc...) and ask them how they got to were they are today.

 

Fixed wing training is the same. Ask questions.

 

I don't talk them out of wanting to be a pilot, just warn them up front it takes money and time. I'm a small school here and do my best to get them flying.

 

It is a small industry and you have to be honest with your clients. There are a few bad training schools out there that are filling BS into the heads of people who know nothing about aviation. They just want to fly and not research or take the time to talk with people in the industry.

 

Never give up on the dream, just don't get fooled into beleiving the lies of guarantee of a job.

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All of you people throwing Robert under the bus are pretty pathetic. ........

Many of you are acting as though this scenario is just too unbelievable. Don't you all realize that about 95% of the helicopter flight schools in this country are a complete scam or a rip off at best?

 

Wow, where did you train? Were you lucky enough to pick a school in the 5% range? Why not share that with everyone else, so no up-and-coming pilots make a mistake. Now you're throwing all of the good school owners under the bus!

 

As far as throwing Robert under the bus...who's done that? The thread has all kinds of comments supporting him, supporting the school, and/or taking neither side. Robert has been very articulate in his comments, and HOA has rebutted them. This is a forum thread and nothing more. And shouldn't the school have a right to defend themselves? And your military discharge status is public information.

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