Communication failures have been blamed for more than a thousand deaths in plane crashes, warns an Australian academic who has reviewed the language pilots and air traffic controllers use.
Dominique Estival, a Western Sydney University linguist, pilot and flight instructor has urged native English speakers to adjust their communication in the aviation industry to reduce the risk of misunderstanding by non-English speaking pilots. Given that radio communication is the main means of communication between air traffic controllers and pilots, effective communication “is crucial for aviation safety”.
“The study of aviation communication sheds light on our understanding of English, and differences between native English speakers and speakers of English as a second language in high risk situations,” Dr Estival said. “Effective communication is paramount in ensuring the success of the global aviation industry.”
by Anna Patty