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Aviation Learning Center Document Meet Your Aircraft P-8740-29
Author: FAA Date: 1995
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We have used the word "memorized" in this article several times. However, when it comes to checklists, they are not to be memorized. A checklist is for checking that an item isn't forgotten. This brings up the rather controversial subject of how to use a checklist. This subject is especially controversial if a multi-pilot crew is involved and the pilots have different ways of doing a procedure. This potential conflict is why the aviation industry and FAA have spent so much time and money on teaching crews how to work together. Whether you are a single pilot, or part of a multi-crew cockpit, the important thing to remember is to use a checklist in a way that ensures that you don't inadvertently skip an item.

We said that checklists are not to be memorized. This is true for normal procedures. It is not necessarily true for all aircraft when it comes to emergency procedures. In many aircraft manuals, in the Emergency Procedures Section, there are immediate action items that must be done if certain emergencies occur. These immediate action items obviously must be memorized and then followed up later with the checklist when circumstances permit. Some checklists are nice to memorize. Using the example of a night instrument approach when the gear doesn't indicate down and you need to lower it manually, it would be nice to know what the proper procedure is before you have to do it for real without ever having read the manual. This is why it is important for all pilots to periodically review their aircraft's operating and emergency procedures. Better yet, hire a CFI for some recurrent training. Remember to always use your checklist.

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