Weather Conditions

  • No matter where in the world a flight is taking place, weather is always an important consideration
  • Depending on the aircraft, some weather must be prioritized more

 

Warm weather does not inherently cause problems, however high air temperature affects both flight ability as well as engine power. The warmer the air is the thinner it gets, stifling the aircrafts effectiveness. In turn, climbing performance and maximum payload is decreased, requiring a longer runway distance.

When a flight is already in the air, fog can often be avoided since it will not be present at high altitudes. Also fog is not much of an issue during landings since numerous aircraft have automatic landing and the visibility of a pilot is not mandatory. However, when the aircraft is still on the ground, problems arise. Airports usually decreases the amount of flights on foggy days to avoid aircrafts crashing into one another.  

Like fog, rain poses the biggest problem when the aircraft are still on the ground. The biggest problem with rain is reducing visibility when taxiing. Just as they do on foggy days, the amount of flights at airports are reduced to minimize the chances of an accident. One the aircraft is in the air and it is not too windy, rain is easily cleared off the windshield. Additionally, snow and ice cause similar problems. However ice also creates the need for defrosting the aircraft, which adds time before being able to take off as well as additional costs.

Lastly, strong winds can pose issues for aircraft. Generally, pilots are not too worried about turbulence because they know the aircrafts are designed to counter wind. Pilots are also trained in how to deal with wind gusts as well. The issue that can arise is possible injury to the passengers. If they are not properly fastened or if items in the plane are loose, the turbulence can cause the people or said items to be thrown about the cabin. If it is known that it will be windy, it is best to stay seated at all times with luggage sufficiently stowed away.


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