Flat Tire.

On Tuesday I flew with an instructor and friend for my Biannual Flight Review. This flight review is required for private pilots that wish to continue flying. As suggested by the name of the event, it takes place every two years.

I can’t believe it’s been two years since I went on my checkride.

I was a bit apprehensive about flying this BFR because there are a couple of maneuvers that I haven’t practiced in a while, mainly stalls. I’m not a fan of stalling the airplane. My goal as a private pilot is to never stall the airplane. I want to keep the airplane flying. Honestly, stalls make me nervous and it is something that I need to get over. While I got through my BFR just fine, I need to go up with an instructor again and do some stalls. Lots of stalls. I need to stall the airplane until I laugh about it.

After we dropped the instructor off, my friend Ryan and I went flying for a short flight just for fun. There was some weather moving in and the wind was providing plenty of opportunity for a crosswind landing practice, so we headed back to the airport.

I have to say my landing was picture perfect. Ryan remarked on how great it was. I felt good for two seconds. Then the left main tire blew while the airplane was still moving at around 50 MPH. This made for an interesting challenge in keeping the airplane headed in a forward direction. I managed to get the airplane stopped and off the runway so that the airport could remain open.

Ryan took a photo of me being cheesy next to the flattened tire.

The club mechanic verified that my landing technique was not the culprit of the blowout but rather low tire pressure. Visually inspecting the tire pressure during pre-flight is not solid enough for the cold weather at this time of year. From now on we’ll be checking the pressure with a gauge.

This was my first incident during landing and while I didn’t get nervous as the events unfolded I did find it to be a good learning experience as I made my way through the challenge.

Now I just need to get up there and practice those stalls!