Cessna Checklists

Take your safety standards to new heights

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Published 26 Nov 2021

What is a Cessna Checklist?

A Cessna checklist is a tool used to standardize flight safety measures before, during, and after flying Cessna airplanes (Cessna 172, Cessna 152, and Cessna 150). This checklist can be used by flight schools and aircraft fleets to identify issues or potential plane-crash risks and address them immediately. It can also act as a guidance tool for students and flight instructors to ensure that pre-flight checks are conducted regularly.

This article features:

Why are Cessna Checklists Important?

Before a Cessna plane leaves the runway, student pilots are trained to assess flight conditions using a detailed checklist. Cessna checklists are used throughout the whole flight to ensure that the pilot and crew are prepared for any issues that may arise. Missing a single item in the pre-flight, take-off, and landing checklist can turn a simple act of carelessness into a life-threatening emergency.

importance of cessna checklist

An investigation of the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) determined that the major contributing factors to the accident above were the flight crew’s failure to perform the flight control check before takeoff and their habitual noncompliance with checklists. A look at the plane’s previous 175 takeoffs also showed that this noncompliance occurred 98% of the time. This incident underscores the importance of Cessna checklists and how regular pre-flight checks help avoid plane crashes and other flight accidents.

How To Use Cessna Checklists Effectively

Completing Cessna 172 checklists effectively is a vital skill for every pilot and flight crew member. It trains them in diligently performing pre-flight tasks and other necessary steps that will avoid accidents in the air and on the tarmac. Here are 4 tips to help student pilots accomplish Cessna checklists effectively:

  1. Understand the systems and mechanisms thoroughly.
    Cessna checklists are structured and specific to the different phases of a flight, making it a great reference tool on a Cessna plane’s parts and their role during pre-flight and landing. Take the time to study every mechanism that makes your respective Cessna fly. This will help student pilots know the value of each item in the Cessna checklist.

  2. Assess yourself before every flight.
    Having an operational aircraft is one thing, being a healthy and stable pilot-in-command (PIC) is another. Mentally prepare yourself before each flight so you won’t miss any items in the C172 checklist. Use pre-flight time to assess yourself and see if you are fit to fly.

  3. Be observant of external factors.
    Apart from understanding the plane’s parts and assessing yourself, take into consideration external factors that can affect the flight, such as weather, turbulence, visual challenges, airfield traffic situation, and terrain. The PAVE check (PIC, Aircraft, enVironment, and External Pressures) can guide pilots before flights in reviewing these crucial external factors affecting overall flight safety.

  4. Be curious and analytical.
    If you see even the slightest of anomalies, report it immediately to your flight instructor. Be vigilant and take the initiative if you feel that there is something wrong. A Cessna 172 checklist is an opportunity to discover something new about your aircraft, not a mundane task to get over with.

Be in the Pilot’s Seat of your Aircraft’s Safety with a Cessna 172 Checklist App

A Cessna 172 Checklist app helps pilots and maintenance personnel perform crucial Cessna 172 safety inspections, such as pre-flight checks and annual inspections—minus the paperwork. The mobile app aids them to cover all key aircraft components, capture potential issues that can affect flight safety, and help them avoid human error in conducting inspections.

5 Tips on Conducting Efficient Inspections with iAuditor 

Completing inspection checklists has been part of a Cessna 172 pilot and maintenance technician’s everyday life. Pre-flight checks, post-flight checks, 100-hour inspections, annual inspections, preventative maintenance checks – these are just some of the many inspections performed by these professionals to ensure the safety of every Cessna 172 flight.

Simply put, they know the procedures by heart. However, this does not make them immune from the effects of human error. There are still many instances where checklist items have been missed during the inspection, leading to flight errors, and in the worst case, fatal accidents. Completing aircraft inspections efficiently is a vital skill for every Cessna 172 pilot and maintenance technician. It is crucial that they achieve this consistently to develop discipline and ensure good flight safety records.

With the help of the Cessna 172 checklist app, aviation professionals can leverage the power of technology to avoid human error and improve aircraft inspection procedures. Here are 5 tips on how pilots and maintenance technicians can maximize the iAuditor checklist app to perform efficient inspections:

  1. Make all checklist items “must-do.”

    Sometimes, overconfidence hinders comprehensive Cessna 172 checks. With the Cessna 172 checklist app, checklist items can be set as “must-do” to ensure that inspectors do not miss checking critical aircraft components. This helps lessen the chances of inspection checklist items being missed, which is often a cause of fatal Cessna 172 accidents.

  2. Provide reference notes to help inspectors remember procedures.

    Digital Cessna 172 checklists in the iAuditor app can be customized to include additional guides and notes to help assist during inspections. This is especially beneficial to Cessna 172 student pilots who are still learning how to properly perform inspections. On the other hand, maintenance technicians can utilize this feature to ensure that they complete maintenance checks according to standards.

  3. Perform a self-assessment before every flight with a checklist.

    Having an operational aircraft is one thing, being a healthy and stable pilot is another. Pilots can utilize the Cessna 172 checklist app to do a self-check, where they can use the pre-flight time to assess themselves and determine their fitness for flight.

  4. Always consider external flight safety factors.

    Apart from understanding the plane’s parts and assessing yourself, take into consideration external factors that can affect the flight, such as weather, turbulence, visual challenges, airfield traffic situation, and terrain. The PAVE check can guide pilots before flights in reviewing these crucial external factors affecting overall flight safety.

  5. Be curious and analytical.

    The iAuditor Cessna 172 checklist app enables inspectors to easily report the slightest of anomalies and report them immediately in-app. They can easily notify responsible personnel and/or assign corrective actions to ensure that the issue gets fixed as soon as possible.

The iAuditor Cessna 172 checklist app can serve as a powerful ally that can assist pilots and maintenance technicians in performing their inspection duties in the most efficient and beneficial way. This technology can be the answer in filling in the gaps caused by human errors during Cessna 172 inspections.

Cessna Inspection Checklist App

Complying with safety requirements using paper-based checklists can be tedious, and due to its routinary nature, critical pre-flight, take-off, and landing protocol might be overlooked or even skipped. Empower student pilots with a digital tool to efficiently benchmark performance and take your safety standards to new heights.

With the iAuditor Cessna 172 checklist app, you can eliminate the pitfalls of paper-based aircraft inspections and ensure the flight worthiness of your aircraft every time you fly. Flight school trainers and student pilots can do away with conventional pen-and-paper checklists and take advantage of the following benefits:

  • Customize C172 checklists according to your preference
  • Take photo evidence of aircraft defects and quickly alert technicians and/or flight instructors
  • Easily annotate and send completed checklists to flight instructors for review
  • Attach reference guides to complex checklist items
  • Easily access inspection records with iAuditor’s safe cloud backup
  • Encourage peer-to-peer learning by sharing Cessna checklists with co-students
  • Easily check history and identify recurring defects
  • Enable electronic signatures for inspection sign off

To help you get started, we have created free checklists for Cessna 172 and other Cessna models that you can download, customize, and share with your flight school peers.

SafetyCulture staff writer

Carlo Sheen Escano

Carlo Sheen Escano is a contributing writer for SafetyCulture based in Makati City, Philippines. Sheen has experience in digital marketing and has been writing for SafetyCulture since 2018. His articles mainly discuss risks in the workplace and well-known safety and quality processes used to mitigate them. Furthermore, Sheen is passionate about providing insights to global customers on how technology can help them to do the best work of their lives.

Carlo Sheen Escano is a contributing writer for SafetyCulture based in Makati City, Philippines. Sheen has experience in digital marketing and has been writing for SafetyCulture since 2018. His articles mainly discuss risks in the workplace and well-known safety and quality processes used to mitigate them. Furthermore, Sheen is passionate about providing insights to global customers on how technology can help them to do the best work of their lives.