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9 Common Mistakes Pilots Make During Taxi

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There's a lot that can go wrong on the ground. Don't make these mistakes as you taxi to the runway...

1) Failing To Clear All Intersections

Especially at busy airports, make sure to clear all intersecting taxiways ahead and to the sides of your aircraft.


2) Not Having Your Taxi Diagram Ready

Keep your taxi diagram out for situational awareness. It also makes things much easier if you're given a new taxi route.


3) Programming Your Route During Taxi

Avoid programming your route as you taxi, even if it's a re-route from what you originally programmed. Find a place to stop, then go heads-down.


4) Heads-Down Taxiing

Simply put, avoid being heads-down during taxi. It could be for almost anything: looking at your iPad, checking en-route conditions, or even just reaching for something out of your bag.


5) Forgetting To Brief Your Taxi Route

Before you move, brief your taxi route and all hotspots. Try tracing your taxi route with the "highlight" feature on your EFB.


6) Forgetting To Read Back All Hold-Short Or Crossing Instructions

When reading back taxi clearances, you must read back all hold-short or crossing restrictions. Do your best to copy down the instructions for busy airports and don't be afraid to ask for clarification if you're confused.

Swayne Martin

7) Not Inputting Wind Corrections

The application of elevator/aileron crosswind taxi corrections helps to minimize the weathervaning tendency, and ultimately results in making the airplane easier to maneuver on the ground.


8) Getting Lost

The last thing you want is to create a traffic conflict on the ground at a busy airport. If you get lost or confused, stop and ask for clarification. If you need a progressive taxi from ATC, request one.

Corey Komarec

9) Taxiing Too Fast

The FAA recommends taxiing at a speed similar to a "brisk walk." Take things slow in busy ramp areas and as you speed up on longer taxi routes, don't rush, especially at night and when taxiway lighting is poor. Slow down near runway crossings to verify it's clear in both directions.


What other mistakes should pilots avoid during taxi? Tell us in the comments below.

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