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HeliTorque Forum Index » Ground School

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Metform 215
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ExmoorHeli
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 03, 2008 7:15 pm    Post subject: Metform 215 Reply with quote

I am working through a few sample papers for the PPL(H) met exam but I seem to have a mental block when it comes to reading Metform 215 and deciding on the best course of action out of the various options given.

I can understand the information given on the form (more or less) and make a reasonable guess at which zone on the forecast map the TAF applies to, but the last question is generally something along the lines of:

“You are planning a flight in N England flying at 2500 feet. You have a basic PPL so you must remain clear of cloud, in sight of the surface, visibility greater than 5km, and no icing. Select the best course of action out of the following four options.” The options are usually something like “Proceed”, “Proceed avoiding high ground”, “Delay the flight”, and “Cancel”, with various reasons given.

My problem is that all of the reasons seem to be consistent with the information given on the Form, to a greater or lesser extent, and most of the options look reasonable to me. I can’t work out why the “correct” answer is necessarily the best option. As far as I can see the safest option is always going to be “stay in and watch telly”.

Is there some rule of thumb which you can use to guide you towards the right answer? What are they trying to test you on exactly? All comments welcome.
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 03, 2008 11:00 pm    Post subject: Re: Metform 215 Reply with quote

ExmoorHeli wrote:
Is there some rule of thumb which you can use to guide you towards the right answer? What are they trying to test you on exactly? All comments welcome.


Most test questions are designed to determine your ability in knowledge, decision making, or combination of both.

You will often find that some questions have what appear to be "all correct" answers. This is done purposely. In cases such as these, you should pick the most correct answer which would occur most of the time.

Also, normally two are dead wrong, and one is close enough to confuse you as in your example.

You know that Cancel and Delay are silly. Proceed and avoid....., and Proceed are the ones to look at closely.

Simply based on the content of your example: Why would you avoid high ground (unless you were going to hit it, or feared icing), if all other criteria are met and you do not loose site of the ground? You wouldn't. Therefore, I would pick Proceed.

but then again, I fly in the US. Laughing
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 04, 2008 9:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Depends how high the high ground is. Did they specify this? If you've got at 2500' cloud base with 2200' terrain, it's not going to give you a lot of terrain clearance, which is not sensible, and you would also be breaking the 500' rule. So in that case I would avoid the high ground!!

You would have to post the exact question, along with all the other elements of the 215 really - it's too ambiguous to tell giving the limited information.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 04, 2008 11:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

WhirlyGirl wrote:
and you would also be breaking the 500' rule


And that depends what's on the high ground. If there's no person, vessel, vehicle or structure, then you're fine!

Quote:
The 500 feet rule

Except with the written permission of the CAA, an aircraft shall not be flown closer than 500 feet to any person, vessel, vehicle or structure.


(Not advocating flying at 50ft... you can't see the horse and rider behind the next hedge from there!)

Cool
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 04, 2008 2:38 pm    Post subject: Re: Metform 215 Reply with quote

ExmoorHeli wrote:
Is there some rule of thumb which you can use to guide you towards the right answer?.


I believe that ExmoorHeli wasn't looking for which answer was actually correct in his example, but rather a way of limiting the risk of picking the wrong one.

Here are some more hints:

We have demonstrated another facet of taking exams which should be avoided......never read into the question!

Whirlygirl added: "depends on how high the high ground is"
James added: "what s on the high ground?"

You MUST answer the question based solely on the information provided (and naturally regulations, etc.) If you start to "dress up" the question's information, the odds are you will not pick the correct answer.

Proven fact: Read all the answers completely, then pick one. The one you pick first is usually the right one. (referred to as subconscious action)

Be careful of the words "always, never, seldom".....These are "limiters" designed to confuse.

Finally, if all else fails........pick the longest answer.

(As you can see, my answers are long. I was also a test preparer in my day as well.) Laughing
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 04, 2008 8:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the helpful comments, particularly Afterburner.

As Afterburner says, I was only really looking for general guidance, but in retrospect it was probably a bit unfair to ask such a vague question. I didn’t post the full question as the test paper I bought carries a copyright notice, but I will try to summarise the example:

In the relevant zone the cloud base is generally above the planned flight level but with occasional rain showers and a lower cloud base in the region of the showers. The additional notes indicate cloud covering hills, and that a low pressure area outside the zone to the east will move away to the east. The options are:

a) proceed but divert around showers
b) bellow PPL minima, cancel the flight
c) everything will move east, delay the flight
d) the rain will not affect the flight, proceed avoiding high ground.

Option a) seems reasonable to me. Option b) seems a bit over-cautious and I would be inclined to discount it, but are they expecting you to always err on the cautions side? (This is where doubts start to set in!) Option c) also seems a bit over cautious as the low is not in your weather zone and there’s nothing to indicate what’s out to the west. Option d) seems a bit too casual so I would be inclined to discount it. I would probably go for a)

I won’t say which is the “right” answer just yet, but is my reasoning at fault?
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 04, 2008 9:40 pm    Post subject: Metform Reply with quote

ExxmoorHeli,

Um.....this is a good one. Your reasoning seems appropriate.

Here is my thinking:
A. Plausible
B. Silly, you are not below PPL minima. There was nothing in the question to indicate this. Don't read into the question.
C. This is a "trick" answer. "Everything" is not correct. Only the low pressure area will move east. The clouds and rain showers remain.
D. Don't rule this out.

Since the rain is occasional and only under the lower cloud bases, it can be avoided. The question does state that the high ground is obscured by clouds, and does not state that the showers are along your flight path. Therefore, you would not be near them.

If the question had something like "occasional rain showers lie along your route of flight with lower cloud bases......blah blah blah....., then maybe I would go with A.

A is a good course of action, but does not keep you away from the high ground. You must pick the MOST correct answer.

I would probably go with D since both statements contained within the answer are true. (Notice that it is also the longest answer!)

but that's just me. Laughing

Now if I read into the question and think, "Well if I am flying my 300, I shouldn't be near rain because it pits the leading edges of the rotors....maybe I should go back and take the 500 which I can't afford, and won't have money for lunch.....but the light bill is due..... Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Get the point. Go with the information provided.

This is a fun thread. Heli Boy Heli Boy
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 04, 2008 9:49 pm    Post subject: Re: Metform Reply with quote

afterburner wrote:

This is a fun thread. Heli Boy Heli Boy


AB you're such a heli geek Laughing Cool I love it.
i agree. Smile
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:03 pm    Post subject: Re: Metform Reply with quote

animalsticks wrote:
afterburner wrote:

This is a fun thread. Heli Boy Heli Boy


AB you're such a heli geek Laughing Cool I love it.
i agree. Smile


Yup. It just makes my rotors spin. Helicopter

but don't go entirely by my choice of answer. See what others think as well.
The only one who knows the right answer is the one who made up the question. Laughing Laughing Laughing
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2008 9:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

OK, according to the practice paper the correct answer is c), delay the flight until later.

Thinking about it carefully, I suppose the assumption must be that the rain showers will move away with the low pressure area, and if there was anything nasty out to the west it would probably be mentioned on the Form. I have no idea whether this was based on a "real" exam question.

I decided that the best approach is to take the information given on Metform 215 at its face value and try to select the most prudent decision based on the actual information provided. I took the met paper this afternoon, and I’m pleased to say I passed. I got all the questions relating to Metform 215 correct, although I did get a few other questions wrong. Still I passed, which is the main thing.

Only two more exam papers left to sit. It’s hard to believe I might actually become a qualified helicopter pilot next year!
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2008 9:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Congratulations!! I think the Met stuff will be fun to learn.
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2008 10:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ExmoorHeli wrote:
I decided that the best approach is to take the information given on Metform 215 at its face value and try to select the most prudent decision based on the actual information provided.


That is all you can do. As you saw, the question was based on the interpretation of the person who made up the question.

There was nothing in the information to indicate that the flight should be delayed, but that was not the answer the test designer wanted.
I'll bet their not even a pilot! Rolling Eyes

But, you passed and that is all that matters. Laughing
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