Flying Tip: Turn off your taxi light

Airplanes taxiing in Boston

Airline pilots and charters operate in and out of some pretty busy airports, and taxiing around these places can pose a challenge. It’s not hard to adhere to a taxi clearance, but when you throw in the chaos of radio chatter and lots of other airplanes (wild cards) things do get interesting. For this reason, professional pilots have adopted the common courtesy of turning the taxi light off when giving way.

Here’s how it works. Whenever the airplane is stopped or giving way to another aircraft, we turn our taxi lights off. On the one hand, it’s just courteous not to blind the other guy before takeoff. But it’s also a great way too indicate to the other crew that yes, you are going to stop. We then turn the taxi lights back on before we start moving again.

Special thanks to Nick Ringrose at Epic Blue Flight Training in DXR who inspired this post.

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About the author
Pat Flannigan is a professional pilot and aviation blogger. He has been flying for fifteen years and is currently working as an airline pilot in the United States.

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