NOTE:  Video of the Safety Seminar may be found on the YouTube channel for the Omaha Soaring Club:  Annual Safety Seminar – 2023 – YouTube

The Omaha Soaring Club’s March membership meeting and annual safety seminar was held March 11, 2023 at the Centris Federal Credit Union headquarters.

Travis A from Omaha Tracon provided an overview of the services they provide when we inform them that we are flying. He emphasized that controllers try to keep traffic from BTA when we have operations, but do not guarantee a sterile environment for us. He indicated that this is much less of an issue when Eppley is using the 32s, but that when Eppley is using the 14s sequencing traffic around us is a greater issue. This situation becomes more problematic if we have operations above 6000 MSL.  He indicated that a Letter of Agreement with Omaha Tracon could be possible to provide a more clearly defined structure to their responses to our operations. He also indicated that equipping our gliders with transponders or ADS-B out would be very helpful.

Steve R. led a discussion of the annual safety quiz and potential areas of safety concerns.

Mark B. will be polling members for safety concerns in the upcoming season to add structure our collection of safety concerns and best responses to them.

Bob C. provided a summary of glider accidents nationwide in the past year.

Tom S. provided an overview of our operations in 2022 and plans for 2023.  He emphasized that it is not necessary for all to arrive at the published start time or stay the whole day. It is very helpful in planning our operations if everyone planning to fly the upcoming weekend will respond to the Wednesday night message polling for interest.

Jeff provided an overview of our financial status (see his e-mail to the club on 3/2/2023 for details). There was discussion about our tow fees having remained constant despite a significant increase in fuel costs in the past year. A motion was made to increase tow fees by $5; it passed with a clear majority of votes. This was followed by discussion of the role of CAP flights in our revenue stream. The general conclusion was that this is very beneficial to club financially and serves our mission of promoting soaring with minimal impact to club member flying opportunities. The question of how many CAP flights we can assume in our financial planning was a subject of further discussion.

Bud led a discussion of plans for adding a second single seat glider to our fleet. Bud has purchased a Grob 102 Astir CS, and is interested in leasing or selling it to the club. The PW-5 that was offered to us last fall is not yet airworthy, and it’s cost not determined. There was discussion of the need for a higher performance single-seat glider in our fleet and general consensus that this is a need. The Grob is expected to be at BTA in April, and further consideration can then happen.

Bill provided an overview of the status of the Pawnee. He believes the required maintenance to the fuselage and tail can be completed for approximately $6000 and then fabric repairs to the wings can be done for approximately $12000. He believes the Pawnee can be reliable for a significant time if these maintenance issues are made. He also added that he can provide a transponder the L-23 for $1200.

John led a discussion of the need for a liability release to be signed by anyone flying club aircraft. There was discussion of some of wording of the release, which John will research, but there is general agreement on that this is valuable to the Club.

Meeting adjourned.

David Leslie
Secretary, Omaha Soaring Club