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Chapter 6. Emergency Procedures

Section 1. General

6−1−1. Pilot Responsibility and Authority

a. The pilot−in−command of an aircraft is directly

responsible for and is the final authority as to the

operation of that aircraft. In an emergency requiring

immediate action, the pilot−in−command may

deviate from any rule in 14 CFR Part 91, Subpart A,

General, and Subpart B, Flight Rules, to the extent

required to meet that emergency.


14 CFR Section 91.3(b).

b. If the emergency authority of 14 CFR

Section 91.3(b) is used to deviate from the provisions

of an ATC clearance, the pilot−in−command must

notify ATC as soon as possible and obtain an

amended clearance.

c. Unless deviation is necessary under the

emergency authority of 14 CFR Section 91.3, pilots

of IFR flights experiencing two-way radio commu-

nications failure are expected to adhere to the

procedures prescribed under “IFR operations,

two-way radio communications failure.”


14 CFR Section 91.185.

6−1−2. Emergency Condition− Request

Assistance Immediately

a. An emergency can be either a distress or

urgency condition as defined in the Pilot/Controller

Glossary. Pilots do not hesitate to declare an

emergency when they are faced with distress

conditions such as fire, mechanical failure, or

structural damage. However, some are reluctant to

report an urgency condition when they encounter

situations which may not be immediately perilous,

but are potentially catastrophic. An aircraft is in at

least an urgency condition the moment the pilot

becomes doubtful about position, fuel endurance,

weather, or any other condition that could adversely

affect flight safety. This is the time to ask for help, not

after the situation has developed into a distress


b. Pilots who become apprehensive for their safety

for any reason should request assistance immediately.

Ready and willing help is available in the form of

radio, radar, direction finding stations and other

aircraft. Delay has caused accidents and cost lives.

Safety is not a luxury! Take action!