What's New

2013 Updates 

09/28/2013 The FITS SBT Facilitator training of 34 Leading Edge Aviation CFI's was successful to include both CFI-RH, CFI-A, CFI-ME & the third DPE in the US. Also trained was the LEA Dir. of Admissions, LEA Curriculum Developer and a CFI/instructor from Central Oregon Community College.

2014 Updates

04/09-16/2014 Visited Upper Limit Aviations' -2 Utah facilities and trained 46 CFI-RH, 3 CFI-A staff, 1 SUU adjunct professor and one marketing director as FITS SBT Facilitators as ULA has chosen to modernize their flight training curriculums.

Fall/2014 HAI's Rotor magazine featured the value of HelicopterSBT in the Real-World SMS article beginning on page 42.

2015 Updates

January/2015 The January issue of Rotor and Wing magazine featured the value of HelicopterSBT to small operators in implementing a SMS and maintaining a growing and evolving Safety Culture.

April 21/2015 FITS SBT Facilitator Course at Leading Edge Aviation in Bend, Oregon for new CFIs.

April 22/2015 Upgrade & Development of existing Leading Edge FITS SBT curriculums and Facilitator workshops.

April 23-27/2015 Onsite at Colorado Heli-Ops for 141 Maintenance training, SMS & FRAMT review and Facilitator staff interactions.

August 11, 2015. Training at the Robinson Helicopter Co. factory all Robinson Instructors and production test pilots to be qualified FITS SBT Facilitators. Also attending the Facilitator course are FAA and USHST members.

August 12 & 13, 2015 At the Robinson Factory to attend a USHST JHSIT twg. face to face semi-annual workshop.

2016 Updates

Planning for the HAI Safety Symposium at Heli Expo on Feb. 29th. On the planning committee for the USHST presentation, "Safety as the Bottom Line". 8AM to 10AM

Mar. 01, 2016 Co-presenting at Heli Expo for the HAI Training Committe, CFI Mentoring, 8AM-11AM.

May 28 & 29, 2016 Worked with a UAS operator creating a General Operations Manual and training programs for PICs and VOs.

May 30, 2016 Trained a FITS SBT Fcilitator for employment requirements.

August 08-14, 2016 On site at Colorado Heli-Ops.

August 10&11, 2016 USHST JHSIT training work group semi annual Face to Face meeting sponsored at Colorado Heli-Ops, Broomfield, Colorado.

August 12, 2016 FITS SBT Facilitator course offered at Colorado Heli-Ops.

August 13, 2016 Clarification and Enhancement of Aeronautical Knowledge for Helicopter Pilots (C&E) Course offered at Colorado Heli-Ops

Mike's Page

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HelicopterSBT was founded in 2011 by Mike Franz with the recognition that airplane & helicopter flight training was antiquated, evolving and needed to be modernized. This awareness prompted him to develop initiatives for accident reduction by accepting and promoting the FAA Industry Training Standards (FITS) modern training methodology.                            

As most industries change a need is created to formulate modern education and training programs. Individual performance requirements change with technology and customer demands. So I ask, why do flight schools still train pilots to learn to fly like the Wright Brothers? Pilots are taught skill sets to control the aircraft in various maneuvers, tested and given a pilot certificate and are expected to face the challenges of flying in a non training, unprotected environment. They are not taught about Aeronautical Decision Making or continued Risk Management and many people are surprised when they learn that 80% of General Aviation accidents are caused by poor decision making? Many of these accidents cause fatalities.

HelicopterSBT exists to promote accident reduction & modern flight training. The accident rate attributed to the short comings in our current training system need to be addressed. The antiquated maneuvers based system develops a pilot that can control the aircraft but does not develop their Higher Order Thinking Skills. Methods exist to teach pilots both flying and head work skill sets concurrently. This can easily be accomplished by trained FITS Facilitators. HelicopterSBT provides awareness and training of the modern methodolgy to produce pilots that can fly and make sound decisions. Bringing this knowledge of the FAA Industry Training Standards group to flight schools and instructors will address the causal factors of accidents. Flight schools with modern FITS SBT curriculums will produce pilots with both flying and thinking skill sets! More info on the modern FITS SBT Methodology can be found on the "Intro" page. 

Mike has been a helicopter pilot for over 47+ years. His age surprises many that call on him for assistance in changing to modern curriculums and training methodologies. Most older pilots are set in their ways and very resistant to change. Mike has researched training methods, techniques and requirements and accepts being the industry lead in modernizing flight training. Mike is an active member of the USHST(JHSIT-twg), USHST SMS & Safety Committee, HAI, PHPA, SAFE, NAFI, AOPA, IAFTP and the FAASTeam. These entities are working on training reform as they recognize the need to upgrade to meet the demands of increasingly complex flight operations and technically advanced aircraft.

HelicopterSBT staff members offer Seminars & Courses to bring the modern flight training methodology to aviation for both helicopters and airplanes. Please view the Courses & Services page for more information and also the "Intro to FITS SBT Methodology" page for a description of the modern concepts and elements.