Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Photo of the week, July 27th

'I took this picture as I was looking out of the window of an Airbus as we prepared to land in Chicago, USA, seeing the working of the flaps, the spoilers, the ailerons and more made me so glad that I have trained in Aviation; that WAASPS and Medicine on the Move have trained me as a pilot and engineer, and now can build and fly light aircraft in Ghana.  I am going to Oshkosh this week to tell over half a million people what light aviation is doing to improve opportunities for young Ghanaians like me and the current and potential impact in health in rural communities.  Thank you B&FT and readers for your support!.  Patricia Mawuli Nyekodzi, volunteer Pilot/Engineer with Medicine on the Move '

Monday, July 25, 2011

July 25th, 2011

Fresh Air Matters... with Capt. Yaw

A visitor came excitedly to the airfield at Kpong last week.  ‘I heard girl on the radio…’ he exclaimed half-sprinting across the grass.  I raised my head, wondering what could be so amazing and, as he sat down, he continued ‘there is this young woman in hospital who wants to be a pilot!’.  He was so excited at the news; I am sure that my wry grin and un-surprise burst his bubble.  He went on ‘It was on BBC World Service, there is a Ghanaian Reconstructive Plastic Surgeon who just got some award in Scotland, and he has done surgery on a young lady called Lydia who says she wants to be a pilot.’ 

Lydia is a fifteen-year old, smiling, young and energetic somebody I know very well, and have spent over a year working with her towards her rehabilitation, preparation for surgery and flight training. 

The BBC reported that Mr Opoku-Ware-Ampomah has this month received investiture as a ‘Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh’ – which is fantastic.  For those who have not visited the Reconstructive Plastic Surgery and Burns unit at Korle Bu, you are unaware of a gemstone in our crown of medical care.  Although I openly admit that, despite the incredible support from ReSurge Africa, this unit is still in need of support – financial and practical - the work that they do there is outstanding. 

Lydia, a young student pilot, is disabled.  She suffers, or rather is recovering from, a right arm contracture.  As a small child she received an insect-bite on her right elbow.  That got infected, possibly picked up some Mycobacterium ulcerans infection (Buruli Ulcer), probably received lots of  inappropriate ‘local’ care, and finally, during ten years of bleeding, oozing and being held close to her body, the right arm skin bridged the gap between her upper-arm and forearm leaving it locked I position just under her chin, wrist deformation and limited use.  All of these outcomes avoidable with appropriate care early on in the wound cycle. 

Lydia came to the airfield and started learning to fly, sponsored by WAASPS and Medicine on the Move, and showed such a great spirit, determination and tenacity that it became clear that she had what it takes to undergo release of the contracture and reconstruction of her right arm.  Lydia quickly grasped the theory and practice of flying in an amazing manner, and also the techniques of working the tower radio.  Just prior to entering hospital, she would handle three aircraft in the circuit on the radio without hesitation!

Mr Ampomah is one of only a handful of reconstructive plastic surgeons in West Africa, and he is incredibly dedicated to what he does.  After assessment he agreed to undertake surgery that involved dissecting the contracture, releasing adhesions, finding the arteries and nerves and repositioning the arm at a ninety-degree angle.  In a second surgical operation the skill of the scalpel was used to separate and lift a section of the vertical muscle band from the right hand side of her back, retaining the blood vessels and structure of that tissue, then threading it underneath her armpit and wrapping it around her flesh devoid structure section of her arm.  Finally, skin was taken from the leg and placed over the fresh tissue, and all three sites dressed. 

Yes, this was done in Ghana – beautifully carried out.  Skill and attention to detail that many people are not aware is available within our territory.  Of course, it is team work, and the anaesthetists, surgeons, nurses, physiotherapists all work together. In much the same way aircraft operations are based on team work, it is also the surgery team’s essential mantra.

Aviation here has extra challenges with the environmental conditions, so does the RPS and Burns Unit at Korle Bu.  The heat, the atmospheric petri-dish we all breathe and the conditions that visitors and staff drive and walk through on their way to the hospital create increased risks of post-operative infection and complications.  With this there is a need for more attention to detail – something which Mr Ampomah is clearly working towards, support from those who ‘should-and-can’ permitting, elevating the standards of post-operative care massively.
Through this surgical miracle, giving increased independence, quality of life and manipulative potential to  Lydia, we hope to see her reach solo flight within a year, going on to become, we believe, the youngest person to train to become a pilot in Ghana and possible the first disabled person to achieve that target.

Today in the USA a documentary has been released at Oshkosh Air Venture, the largest General Aviation event in the world, and it not only ‘stars’ but it is also dedicated to ‘Lydia’.  In the footage Lydia can be seen flying Melissa Pemberton, world famous Aerobatic pilot, who visited Ghana recently, and is also interviewed on screen where she declares her desire to fly to rural communities and to tell them through health education how to avoid the challenges that she will live with for her whole life.  I saw the documentary on a pre-release showing in Atlanta this week and there was not a dry eye in the house. 

I am proud to be a supporter of Lydia and of Mr Ampomah, including the whole crew at the RPS and Burns Unit, and I have to say that Alberta, the resident Physio, is amazing in the way she supports the recovery and stretches the body and minds of those she works with – and look forward to seeing the end result of their efforts in the coming months and years. 

Lydia’s story is a credit to the team at Korle Bu, and it has only been possible through the support, financial, physical and emotional from a large team.  Support has come from Ghana, Germany, Switzerland, United Kingdom, Brazil, Mauritius, South Africa, Canada... and it was wonderful to also receive this week financial support from Ghana Civil Aviation Authority towards her surgery.

GCAA will get to know Lydia very well over the coming years, and I hope that you will too; she has already been involved in helping with the work on the runway at Kete Krachi, supported one hundred children on a ‘fly me’ day at Kpong, logged a good number of flight training hours, undertaken first aid training and shows no signs of letting her disability preventing her reaching the places that most able-bodied people consider too hard to get to!

Lydia has already been invited to speak at the Women in Aviation in Africa (WAFRIC) Aviation Conference, to be held in Accra, later this year, and, along with her classmates and mentors, will become another role model that will change the way people think, as well as taking positive change to the rural areas of Ghana. Much as these young people’s lives have been changed by aviation, they are ready to share and multiply the potential of that change within and way beyond the borders of Ghana.

Thank you Mr Ampomah, Alberta and the team, thank you for helping Lydia – and thank you Lydia for being who you are!

Capt. Yaw is Chief Flying Instructor and Chief Engineer at WAASPS, and lead Pilot with Medicine on the Move, Humanitarian Aviation Logistics ( e-mail

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Photo of the week, July 20th

The rapid changes and apparent increase in lack of predictability of our weather has added to the challenges for farmers, fishermen, sailors and pilots alike. Here we see a flight around the edge of a storm cell in the Western Region, by Medicine on the Move pilots used to navigating around such developments. Storms in West Africa can develop quickly and take us by surprise, even with the latest satellite images we can have a clear sat-image and yet experience sudden rain in reality. More studies need to be undertaken into the way our weather develops if we are to establish early warning systems that help to protect people and their property. Photo Courtesy WAASPS Ltd.

Monday, July 18, 2011

July 18, 2011

Fresh Air Matters... with Capt. Yaw

Newspapers and television carry some interesting aviation stories – some true, some exaggerated and some, well, more noise, smoke and mirrors, with fiction as a side dish than accurate. Sometimes, it is by misunderstanding, often by lack of effort towards understanding, and/or research. For example, a recent story used the brand name of Cessna spelt as Sesna as well as the stories carrying the plural of aircraft, which should still be aircraft mistakenly as aircrafts, which is a word that simply does not exist in the English language. I am sure that at times such announcements are more ‘well-meant misleading’ than fact. How often have we heard about the ‘new airport at…’ or the ‘international airport being built at …’ or ‘the new jet engine facility being introduced at…’. Frankly, I have reached the stage where I read, listen to or watch these announcements, smile, shrug my shoulders and then go flying!

Sometimes there are ‘mischief’ comments that sneak in. Of course not only in the papers and on TV but also in conversation – and we are all guilty of it to some extent. Sometimes that mischief is harmless, even humorous for those in the know, but at times it can be damaging – to an individual, an organisation, a sector or even the nation.

The recent news from the GNA “Accra, July 11, GNA – The Kotoka International Airport (KIA) has won the 2011 Best African Airport of the Year Award…” Caught my attention – since I am certain that I have flown through some very nice African airports with better facilities than ours. Then I read it again, and realized that it was all about routes. The award apparently “commended the KIA for distinguishing itself in service delivery, development of new routes and attracting four major airlines from the United States and Europe to Ghana in 2011 alone.”, which makes more sense and is an award well deserved – even if 2011 is not even 60% spent yet! Ayekoo!

It is abundantly clear that our skies are getting busier! It is also clear that a lot of efforts are going into making things more attractive at Kotoka, but there is also news that gets published that makes my shoulders oscillate with amusement! For example, the announcement in an article recently about GACL (Ghana Airports Company Ltd) that states ‘… the company, as part of its future plans, is expected to re-model the entire terminal building of the KIA to ease traffic as this will provide seven aerobridges to facilitate boarding of passengers.’ !

Of course, we all have our wish lists! At the same time, there is a need to start reporting on what is underway or achieved over what makes a publicity/political statement. Frankly, if the (I am still laughing) seven air-bridges were under construction, or even a genuine contract signed, then let us make noise about it, otherwise save it for the ‘blue-sky planning’ session! Perhaps, realistically in our economy, something more modest would be believable! However, when there is so much other really important work to be done, let us make efforts to ensure that press releases and headlines remain factual, realist and timely. For example the new fire station at Kotoka, seemingly delayed continuously over several years, is now sitting there ready to enter service. That is a news-worthy edifice, not that I like the look of it, but I do respect the work that has gone on there – and it is far more relevant than some far-off concept that will probably not see the light of day within two or three electoral cycles, if even within my lifetime.

Our aviation infrastructure lacks lustre, no question about it! However, we seem to have reduced the operating hours at certain regional airports, added certain administrative challenges and focused our attention on international routes, neglecting the need for domestic / General Aviation for the people. Don’t get me wrong, we NEED international aviation to fund the development of domestic developments. In fact it is absolutely marvellous that TAP-Air Portugal is now flying to Accra – interestingly that makes life easier for our Brazilian friends due to the multiple onward connections to their country!

The potential economic impact of increased, easier links to Brazil should not be understated – yet it is missed in the presentations and reporting! Of course, many have tried in the past to establish a direct link to Brazil (which is, by the way, the closest trans-Atlantic destination from Ghana), so this is a positive step in the right direction. The newest airline on the block even stated that Air links between Portugal and Africa are one of the company's "principal strategic objectives" – that is the sort of statement that makes sense!

If you go to Brazil, you will find a thriving international, domestic and General Aviation market. As discussed here a few weeks ago, Embraer, a Brazilian aircraft manufacturing company, is amongst the largest aircraft manufacturers in the world. But look at the country’s aviation infrastructure; they have over ten thousand (10,000) aircraft on their register – mainly small aircraft, plus, reportedly, over FOUR THOUSAND (4,000) airstrips of which only around SEVEN HUNDRED (700) have paved runways. The majority are remote strips, in many cases cleared and maintained by the people living in the area as a means of ready access to emergency services and simplicity of transportation in challenging conditions. Interestingly, I only found just over one hundred of them with ICAO designations, and less than fifty appear to be ‘commercial’ in the same sense as Kotoka, Kumasi or Tamale. One of those airports, Sao Paulo, peaks operations at a reported forty five movements per hour! Interestingly, their aircraft register has more than the usual single ‘unique country identifier’ – it has four! Whereas all Ghana aircraft start their registration with 9G, Brazilian aircraft may start with PP, PR, PT or PU.

It is fascinating that, Brazil, probably the leading developing nation, is the fifth largest country and eighth largest economy in the world – and, of course is the ‘B’ of BRIC (being the acronym for Brazil Russia India and China, for those in the economic development stage of ‘rapid growth potential’). From an aviation standpoint, Brazil has much to teach us, but we must also grow our aviation appropriately for our needs in line with our industry potential, without any misleading statements or ‘exaggerations’ that create mistrust and lack of confidence in where we are going. We need regulatory and practical enablement of our aviation sectors for rapid growth across the country and region.

This time next week, I will be at the opening of a week where around half a million people will be visiting an airfield in Wisconsin, USA, which is expecting 10,000 aircraft, the majority of which will be single engine piston aircraft, and I will be reporting back to you about the growth potential that I will be exploring directly. I assure you that I will be spending time with those from Brazil and asking more about how they go about their amazing growth and sustenance of the aviation industry there. I will share the experience with you all, without fabrication or ‘sensationalist exploitation’.

Facts are often more surprising than fiction, and so we should try to get the journalistic trend more towards developmental, factual journalism than sensationalistic ‘futures in the rune stones’ for apparent ‘point scoring’ that seems to have become a recent trend…
Have a great, fact filled, aviation and development aware week!

Capt. Yaw is Chief Flying Instructor and Chief Engineer at WAASPS, and lead Pilot with Medicine on the Move, HumanitarianAviation Logistics ( e-mail

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Photo of the week, July 13th

Agricultural practices can be challenging in the valleys and on the hillsides along the Akwapim-Togo range. Here, about 8km north of Yogoga, we see hand prepared and managed strip farming, topped by telecom and TV towers. Awareness of erosion from such practices and how to mitigate against it for long term sustainability, needs to be shared with those who earn their daily bread from the struggle on the slopes. Photo Courtesy Medicine on the Move

Monday, July 11, 2011

July 11, 2011

Fresh Air Matters... with Capt. Yaw

The expression ‘In Aviation, if you want to end up with a small fortune, you must start with a large one.’ is as true today as it was in the early days of aviation, unless you do not agree to play by the rules. Sadly, as in all industries there are those who find ‘quick and dirty’ ways to line their pockets – however, they quickly leave the industry and move on ‘to other pastures’, at times leaving corpses behind them. Others make a living out of the administration of aviation, and that seems to be quite lucrative these days too! However, look at the ‘super-aviation’ nations and see how much they support the bottom-end of their industry, subsidising it from the top-end of the aviation food-chain.

Real aviation is about passion, not lust, not greed and certainly not about ‘making it big’. It is for that reason that I love to share my passion for aviation, as does my wonderful team, and together we try to help grow the industry in a sustainable manner for all to enjoy. Sadly, it is hard, but not yet impossible, to find that passion in the halls of bureaucracy!

I get excited at fly-me days. The days when select children from rural communities come and see what aviation is all about – at the grass roots, tangible level. Sit them in a cockpit, take them in the air and bring them safely back to earth able to recount their story of ‘triumph-over-gravity’. I enjoy the part-time student pilots who struggle to fund a flying lesson once or twice per month, working towards their qualification over several years – realising the changes that learning about aviation makes to their approach to their work, their outlook and their life in general. Equally, we gain pleasure from training the middle-income enthusiasts, commercial-pilot-wannabes and ex-pats who come to fly, and together share the joyous task of encouraging one another and building that sustainable future together.

Moreover, and more importantly, I gain satisfaction, that others can only glimpse at, when we fly out and land on the lake and take health education to a remote village, or help to open a rural, community airfield. For me, that is what aviation is all about – changing lives, one flight at a time. Through appropriate light aviation, and the growing following from rural Ghanaians, and over one thousand who follow on-line from around the globe, the aviation growth at the bottom end in Ghana, a slow but sure change is working its way into the system – and can go a long way if allowed to, and are not hindered by bureaucratic, as well as financial, barriers coupled with paralysing non-interest from those in the seat of decision-making.

Lately, it seems that more of the ‘I’m alright Jack.’ approach has bled into administration, and frankly, those building the bottom end of the industry are getting tired of fighting against the paper-weight and financial-vacuum coming from above, but, fear not, we will not stop promoting and growing a sustainable entry level aviation for all, especially for the rural folks and youth who stand to benefit most from it all!

It seems to me that the lack of understanding of ‘Sankofa and looking at where we came from’ is now a plague that seems to be igniting more and more people in ‘high office’ and even in the lower ranks of middle-management of the Civil Service – and entry-level/humanitarian aviation is definitely suffering from it right now.

One of the joys that I get is to be present in really rural locations, and to make access to their home easier for health education and emergency purposes, and to stimulate aviation, as well as general, education in these areas. This is a challenge, opening the eyes of the people in the rural areas to the benefits – it takes time, dedication and input of both personal and community resources, as sweat capital, since cash is rarely needed for the development of a basic airfield facility.

Sadly, we have a current situation, where a community participated en-mass with children, adults and community leaders alike to work to re-open a facility, neglected and abandoned by the state (as shown in this paper a few weeks ago). I was privileged to lead a team of volunteers on two visits to the community (travel time over 60 hours for the two trips; about 100 minutes each way, by light plane). We encouraged them and prepared an application to re-activate the airfield, at no charge, knowing that this community has great need to improve its access in times of need and to act as a ‘stepping stone’ to other infrastructurally isolated communities – and it is not alone.

A letter explaining the details was sent to the authorities, showing pictures of the efforts of the community and requesting support in a task that should have been a maintenance job for the state, and had been undertaken, willingly and in the spirit of self-development by the local people, in an attempt to better themselves, under guidance of technically competent volunteers, who gave up their own time to assist.

So I was surprised, no I was extremely hurt, angry, and so bitterly disappointed when I was handed a letter this week in relation to the application from this community – a demand for over two thousand, five hundred Ghana cedis, from the same authority who, admittedly under a different leadership, had promised publically that such applications for humanitarian purposes would attract no charge. It is easily within the power of Ghana Civil Aviation Authority to allow development to go on at this and other sites at no cost, it happens in other countries, even in the UK you can open an airfield for use less than 28 days per year without paperwork or fees – you simply follow sensible safety and security guidelines. This is such a clear case of ‘self-help’ being ‘taxed’ and deterred, but why?

Sadly, the upper administration of our Aviation resources enjoy excellent salaries, swish cars, air-conditioning in their offices, allowances and perks that most in the developed world only dream of. What is more, they recently spent vast sums on ‘self-praising’ celebrations, for part of which I was a volunteer pilot, and helped to provide three aircraft and a total of ten hours flying, at ‘no-charge’, and provide free emergency services and discounted flying for their staff. It would appear that something is wrong. It appears that there is a need to fund the ‘lifestyle’ of the authorities, and to take advantage of the good nature of those who try to grow industry and build rural development, it seems that we may have mistaken a parasite for a symbiote – and need to start taking a prophylaxias!

Dear GCAA, please give the entry level and rural aviation, especially youth and humanitarian developments more support and encouragements; we are working to improve the lives of the future, struggling in conditions and places your other aviation sectors do not dream of supporting.

Dear Reader, would you like to support more rural aviation resources and young people/health projects? If so, please contact me, together we can make it happen and sway the trend in favour of positive development.

Capt. Yaw is Chief Flying Instructor and Chief Engineer at WAASPS, and lead Pilot with Medicine on the Move, Humanitarian Aviation Logistics ( e-mail

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Photo of the week, July 6th

The weather in our part of the world is hard to predict at the best of times. Here we see a recent storm front at the Yeji Ferry crossing station. The waters from the Black and the White Volta mix here and bring added dimensions to the micro-climatology around the confluence. This horseshoe of Nimbostratus bore down on the canoes and swirled around the skies as if were a pot of angry groundnut soup, being stirred from above. As our weather patterns are are less predictable than in more temperate climes, extra care is needed on the water, in the air and for those farming the lands as well. Photo Courtesy WAASPS Ltd.'/

Monday, July 4, 2011

July 4th, 2011

Fresh Air Matters... with Capt. Yaw

Pilots have a lot of idioms, acronyms and other little oddities that add flair and flavour to them, yet often providing confusion to others. Some are more amusing than functional, such as the E-check, used prior to boarding an aircraft as a pilot: Empty your bladder; Empty you pockets of loose items that may fall and block controls; Empty your mind of worries and thoughts that may affect safety; Empty your wallet to pay for the fuel! (this may apply more than I first thought to passengers too!)
More functional during a flight, and a phrase that works for me in everyday life, is Aviate-Navigate-Communicate. The meaning is simple;
  1. AVIATE: Fly the plane. Be ‘in-control’, know what is going on in relation to keeping what you are doing safe. Do not be distracted in the event of an emergency from remaining ‘in-control’ of the physical task in hand (i.e. flying the plane, driving the car, operating the machine, etc).
  2. NAVIGATE: Know where you are going, and where you have come from. Be aware of alternate routes, emergency landing areas and have in mind estimates for the times to the key landmarks or stages (waypoints) along the way.
  3. COMMUNICATE: Communication within the aircraft, between aircraft and with the Air Traffic Control units. The phraseology is important and you must be on the correct frequency, use the correct terminology and respect the rules of communication. (parallels outside of aviation are evident)Imagine that you are flying from Accra to Tamale, and about mid-way you have a control issue, your left aileron is not responding. No biggie, provided you Aviate-Navigate-Communicate! First, you change the way you fly the plane, remaining calm, use more rudder and take advantage of the secondary effect of roll that the aileron would have given. Establish which direction you can turn most easily and adapt to the conditions in order to remain flying safely. That is, you are being an Aviator.
Next, navigate, you must establish clearly where you are, where you are going. Are you going to continue to Tamale, turn back to Accra, divert to Kumasi, divert to Techiman or perhaps divert to Kete Krachi? Make some decisions and remain very conscious of where you are, where you can ‘re-navigate’ to in the event of additional challenges – get the plan sorted out in your head.

Now, you need to communicate. Which frequency should you use? Mid-country, your best chance is probably Accra Centre, or if it is tough going you may choose the emergency/distress frequency. Before you key that PTT (press to talk button) you need all the details ready to share with the Air Traffic Controller. Aircraft call sign, type, position, heading, altitude, estimates, options, etc. all should be shared concisely and appropriately.

One of my joys is that of training a particular Air Traffic Controller to fly. Theo Ago is an excellent controller based out of Kotoka, he is a clearly spoken, smart and bouncy chap with a real spring in his step, and he embraces the concept of teamwork, as one fully expects from a person in ATC. Theo came to me a while back and explained that although he had chosen to be a controller, he also wanted to better understand the concepts and challenges of ‘the other side of the microphone’ – that of the pilot.

We signed him up to learn, and on that first day sat him at the controls, and took him up where the birds fly! I remember his smile – it nearly cracked his ears off of the side of his head. His head spun in all directions looking at the landscape below, he held the controls in his hand and within thirty minutes was able to actually control the plane – not overly well, but safely enough to set a ‘sort of heading’ for a mountain, river or township. We flew till his smile looked like it would damage his mandible, and then set back towards the airfield.

Air Traffic Controllers have some wonderful phrases that they use in communicating with an aircraft under their care. One such phrase is ‘Next call, field in sight’. This means ‘let me know when you can see the airfield’. So, it was with delight that I said to Theo ‘tell me when you can see the airfield.’ So many times I have had a friendly ATC ask me to ‘call in sight’, and there I am searching for the field I have never seen from the air before. You sit in the cockpit, aircraft on heading, scanning and scanning – it is not easy. With practice it becomes easier, but first time out – it is like hunting a needle in a haystack –and we all struggle the first of doing this!

Theo was Aviate-ing (he could fly the plane, and it was taking up a fair bit of his concentration). I had the Navigation under control, and he was definitely flying towards the airfield. He could not see the field. He hunted for it intently. I smiled behind the boom mike and tried hard to avoid giving it all away. Then, as we passed over the airfield I asked him to look down. There, beneath the aircraft laid out like a tablecloth amidst the bush-lands, the thousand metre grass runway and safety areas with associated airfield buildings, stared back up at him. He laughed and laughed at his own inability to do a seemingly simple task. I explained to him that this was normal but also that he missed the opportunity to COMMUNICATE. We had a person in the tower, waiting for him to call to ask for help, but he over focused on the ‘aviate’ and although I had the ‘navigate’ in hand, he, of all people, missed the ‘communicate’.

Today, Theo is doing really well in his lessons and close to his first solo flight. I am proud to teach one of our highly valued controllers, and also to enhance their understanding of the ‘sky-tower difference’. I wish more controllers would learn to fly, as I wish more people would take the time to understand and respect the role of Air Traffic Controllers!

Air Traffic Controllers are vital to the safety of our skies, they are there monitoring, guiding and supporting aircraft movements over the Ghanaian territories, they are genuine professionals, to be held in the highest esteem. Aviation is a team effort, and we need to understand the roles of each person. Some roles are more challenging and demanding than others, and I have no difficulty in putting our pilots and Air Traffic Controllers in the same category – high-level professionals we put our lives in the hands of.

Just remember the next time you are flying, there is an angel in the tower, watching over you, communicating with the crew, safety and security clearly in their hands.

Let us celebrate all of our Air Traffic Controllers for the wonderful job that they do. The role of ATC is so important to the safety and security of our skies, these highly trained men and women, working shifts to keep us safe, need to be encouraged and supported.

Capt. Yaw is Chief Flying Instructor and Chief Engineer at WAASPS, and lead Pilot with Medicine on the Move, Humanitarian Aviation Logistics ( e-mail