Squawk 7700 is a first-hand account of author Peter Buffington s experiences as a commercial airline pilot and the journey he took to reach his childhood dream. Buckle your seatbelt and prepare for an eye-opening, turbulent ride into the world of aviation from the pilot's seat. From student pilot at age 15, to flight instructor, to nighttime cargo pilot, and finally as first officer aboard the ATR 72 turboprop airliners island hopping the Caribbean, Squawk 7700 is a riveting aviation adventure.
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There is much more to a career in the aviation industry than just flying airplanes. Some of the pitfalls, shortcuts, and life stresses I experienced are contained in this memoir. These events offer a unique perspective for those interested in aviation's day-to-day operations. One of the intents of sharing these events is to reach youngsters before they make a significant sacrifice to the aviation industry. Youngsters will receive a frank presentation of what an aviation career is about after reading my experiences. They will learn facts about a pilot's career; facts that I didn't receive before I made a commitment to the industry. These events shed light on the unglamorous side of a pilot's career. If I had a chance to read these events before making a commitment to the industry, I may have chosen a much different path in aviation than what I reflect upon now.
What I learned about life during 10 years as a pilot is more than what some people learn in a lifetime. I had very intense emotions and vivid flashbacks while recalling, not all, but some of the experiences that helped compile this autobiography. This memoir might surprise those currently active in the industry because of what it reveals. Airline passengers curious about flight crew lifestyles and the daily stresses they face will find this story fascinating. I offer a glimpse from behind-the-scenes in the aviation industry and tell it from the inside looking out.
I describe the experience of flying poorly maintained equipment in horrendous weather conditions, all while earning food-stamp qualifying wages to reach a personal goal of flying for the major airlines. I share the emotions of not seeing a spouse or family for six months because of demanding schedules, frequent moves, and company control. I tell of the events leading up to the tragic loss of a co-worker because of an arrogant boss and describe day-to-day cost cutting measures taken by many aviation companies to help make money in an industry with very narrow profit margins. These shortcuts are rarely spoken of, and many pilots fail to acknowledge these business practices for fear of losing their flying careers permanently. I unveil the thoughts of flight crew members moments before they board a flight and the focus that is required to get the job done safely.
This book is dedicated to friends and family. A full comprehension of what I experienced as a career pilot is difficult to explain in a single novel; the stories presented here offer a view of the hardships and joyful moments of pursing a childhood goal of becoming a career airline pilot. Upon completion, readers should understand how I have achieved happiness in life by letting go of a childhood dream. After my experiences in the aviation industry, people will have a better understanding of who I am, where I am headed, and why.
Squawk 7700 is a timely, eye opening, must read aviation autobiography. The author, Pete Buffington, tells us of the not so glamorous side of aviation and what it takes to become an airline pilot. Growing up in the Midwest and learning to fly at a countryside Iowa airport, Buffington describes the sacrifices, focus, and emotions of being a young aviator. After several grueling years working as a flying instructor and flying airfreight, Buffington ends up flying for a regional airline after being sent to San Juan, Puerto Rico as a flight crew base. Immediately Buffington discovers the challenges of the regional airline industry and provides a descriptive, harrowing experience from inside the cockpit of an ATR42 as a First Officer.
Buffington returns to the Midwest to rediscover his love of aviation as a pilot. His life story brings him full-circle to discover deeper meaning to life while exposing the aviation industry from the inside. His personal experiences provide insight to a deeper understanding of why recent accidents like Colgan Air Flight 3407 and Comair Flight 5191 can occur.
My personal experiences as an airline pilot and as acting first officer aboard US Airways Flight 1549 that ditched into the Hudson River, I recommend Squawk 7700 for anyone interested in an aviation career, and mandatory reading for those who fly on our national airline system.
- Jeff Skiles, First Officer US Airways Flight 1549
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Book Description Peter M Buffington, 2010. Perfect Paperback. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110971208417
Book Description Peter M Buffington, 2010. Perfect Paperback. Book Condition: New. Brand New!. Bookseller Inventory # VIB0971208417