Many helicopter accidents involve pilots who allow themselves to be influenced by hazardous attitudes that cause them to take unnecessary chances. As a pilot, the less often you allow yourself to act upon a hazardous attitude, the safer your flying will become. It should be remembered that every pilot probably has had or will have hazardous thoughts to some degree at some time. Problems arise when these types of thoughts occur regularly and in the extreme. If pilots learn to recognize them for what they are, they can deal with them accordingly and operate safely.
“No one can tell me what to do.” – This attitude is found in people who do not like anyone giving them orders or advice. They may either be resentful of having someone tell him or her what to do or may just regard rules, regulations, and procedures as silly or unnecessary. However, it is always your prerogative to question authority if you feel it is in error.
”Do something – anything – quickly!” – This is the attitude of people who frequently feel the need to do something immediately. They do not stop to think about what they are about to do; they do not select the best alternative. They do the first thing that comes to mind.
”It won’t happen to me.” – Many people feel that accidents happen to others, but never to them. They know accidents can happen, and they know that anyone can be affected, but they never really feel or believe that they will be involved. Pilots who think this way are more likely to take chances and run unwise risks.
”Of course I can do it.” – People who are always trying to prove that they are better than anyone else tend to think, “I can do it!” They “prove” themselves by taking risks and by trying to impress others. While this pattern is thought to be a male characteristic, women are equally susceptible.
”Whatever happens, happens.” – People who think, “What’s the use?” do not see themselves as making a great deal of difference in what happens to them. When things go well, they think, “That’s good luck.” When things go badly, they attribute it to bad luck or feel that someone is “out to get them.” They leave the action to others–for better or worse. Sometimes, such individuals will even go along with unreasonable requests just to be a “nice person.”