Personal Limitations Checklist (PLC)

The Personal Limitations checklist (PLC) was developed in order to help new pilots increase their situational awareness by reading about other pilot incidents and thereafter fly more safely. The PLC will help you to become a very safe pilot if you and your CFI commit to developing your own customized set of limitations. Once created, you must then make a pledge to continually update your PLC and adhere to the limitations you and your CFI have set. The numbers in parenthesis are suggested for the new pilot.

Created by Louis Mancuso 1992         

Your limitations will increase & decrease depending on currency, total time and experience.



  1. Avoid collisions with other aircraft by:
    • Keeping my head on a swivel in the traffic pattern, especially on final approach
    • Maintaining a sterile cockpit when in the vicinity of an airport.
  1. Have at least _________ ( 1 ½ ) hrs of fuel on board at the end of every flight.
  2. Switch tanks immediately if the engine quits even if there is fuel remaining –
    there could be tank contamination or a blockage preventing proper fuel flow.
  3. Apply carburetor heat immediately when the engine does not sound or feel right.
  4. Never change my flap setting or initiate a slip or mush within 300 feet AGL,
    unless it is an emergency landing and maintain 60 KIAS +5 -0 until round out.
  5. Go around if not established in a stabilized approach within 200 feet AGL. (DFGAP)
  6. Always land within 400 feet of the desired touch down spot (at least 50’ past the numbers).
  7. Always land on the main wheels and on the centerline with no side drift.
  8. Use go-around technique (Throttle, flaps, carburetor heat) when practicing touch and goes and initiate the GO portion early enough to obtain 500’ AGL by the end of the runway.
  9. Land at airports with runways that are ________(3500’) paved useable.
  10. Have respect for the surface winds and use lower limits in an LSA:
    • Fly only when steady surface winds are forecast to remain below ____(23 kts)
    • Make a powered approach on gusty days, adding 5 knots to my approach speed.
    • Use an approach speed of 1.3 x Vso but never less than 60 knots.
    • On gusty days, fly only when the peak gusts are less than ____ (6kts)
    • When there is a crosswind, limit myself to ____(12 kts with 30 degree x-wind, 7 kts with 60 degree x-wind and 6 kts with 90 degree x-wind.  Use lower limits for narrow 75’ runways.
    • Do GPA (Ground Proximity Awareness) training with a direct crosswind during my   Always slip into the crosswind.
  11. When flying LSAs on calm days, slow to 55 KIAS on short final.
  12. Use extra caution when the aircraft has just come out of the maintenance shop.
  13.  To fly into large airports with full services, even if it requires a slightly longer drive.
  14. Always shut the engine when loading and unloading passengers.
  15. Plan my flights so as not to be landing into the sun.
  16. Fly only when the temperature-dew point spread is greater
    than_____( 5) degrees F, ________(10) degrees F at dusk.
  17. Use extra caution at night.
    • I will only fly on bright moonlight nights when the visibility exceeds_____(10) miles and the temperature dew point spread exceeds ____________(12) degrees.
    • I will always keep ground lights in sight.
    • I will never takeoff on an overcast night towards the open sea or rural farmland.
    • I will fly into airports I have recently flown into during the day time.
    • I will always use the VASI to assist my night landings.
    • I will only fly into airports with____ (4000’) runways that are___( 100’) wide.
    • I will reduce my wind limits by ______ (5) knots at night.
    • I will carry _____(2) two accessible flashlights.
  18. Avoid thunderstorms by 10 to 30 miles, depending on intensity of storms.
  19. Practice slow flight regularly and only practice Departure Stalls with a CFI on board.
  20. Before each flight:
    • Be mentally and physically alert.
    • Verify that the visibility will exceed _______ (5) miles ________ (4) miles with GPS.
    • Assure my flight can be made with a minimum obstacle clearance of
      ______ (1000’) for the entire route.
    • Look at satellite weather photos and observe isobar spacing in order to properly determine current and forecast winds.
    • Have a good night’s sleep whenever I am flying the next day. To limit myself to one social drink the night before a flight and honor the 8 hours from bottle to throttle rule.
  21. Continually to ask myself: “Should I be here?” “Do I have a solid Gold Out?”
  22. Limit myself to ______(2) different makes and model aircraft that I have read the POH from cover to cover.
  23. I will not attempt over-night flights until I have made ______ (25) one day x-c trips.
  24. I will never become airborne at a speed of less than 45 knots.
  25. I will always wear a shirt with at least one pocket.
  26. Never to allow my passengers to cause me to violate my PLC.


Signed ________________________________

Date ________­­_______    CFI ______________


Revised FEB 2016

Leave a Reply