Do you have a plan in place if things don’t go as planned? Aviation is an exciting and incredible career, but as we have all learned, it is a challenging industry. This last year, COVID-19 has changed the lives of many pilots, flight attendants and other aviation professionals.
All pilots train to handle emergencies.
What makes a skilled and experienced pilot? One who has superior airmanship, is cool under pressure and always ensures a safe flight.
How many of us take the same care with our personal lives and decisions? Did we read all the instructions before using the power saw? What about that tricky mountain biking trail you did last year? Did you see what healthcare is available before traveling overseas for work?
From minor events to major medical emergencies, our careers as pilots and flight attendants can change in the blink of an eye. In an industry in which passing a medical is a necessity in order to earn a living, we need a plan. Just like pilots who train for an engine failure, we need to plan for losing our medical certificate or worse.
Even if we feel young, strong, and invincible, our life could change tomorrow.
How can Mach8Zero help you?
“I wish I had made a plan…”Is there a feeling worse than when you are unprepared and find out at the very worst time? Like showing up to the spelling test in high school only looking at the words once before class? Or when the job interviewer asks you three greatest weaknesses, but you haven’t thought of even one?
What about when you have an unexpected stroke or heart attack one morning before a flying trip. What comes next?
Unfortunately, that is what happened to a colleague at my current airline.
John woke up, made coffee, and while trying to read the newspaper found he couldn’t focus on the words. He tried speaking to his wife. His brain was working, but his mouth wouldn’t move. Something was wrong.
She rushed him to the hospital. He was diagnosed with a minor stroke. Thankfully he will be fine, there was no permanent damage because the blood flow was quickly restored.
That’s the good news. However, the bad news is that John, who was previously healthy, never took out loss of licence insurance. The aviation medical examiner he is currently working with, says there will be a two-year waiting period to see whether he has another stroke before reinstating his medical certificate. In the meantime, he is grounded from flying.
What is he supposed to do?
He told me that he wished he had made a plan beforehand. He has life insurance, home insurance, and even pet insurance for his dog. Yet, he neglected to make a plan if he lost the ability to provide an income for his family due to a medical condition.
Would you be ready if the same thing happened to you tomorrow morning?
Most common reasons to lose your Licence?
“Yes, but I am healthy, young, and I probably won’t lose my medical.”Yes, this is true. You probably will not randomly lose your medical tomorrow. Or even in the next twenty years. I hope you never will. Yet, there are many disqualifying factors, some of which are more common than you may realise.
In the United States as an example, the mandatory retirement age for airline pilots is 65 years old. Not counting those who retire early, many pilots lose their medical before reaching 65. At some airlines, nearly half of all pilots lose their first-class medical before reaching 65.
The FAA lists 15 major conditions disqualifying conditions including:
- Angina pectoris
- Bipolar disease
- Cardiac valve replacement
- Coronary heart disease that has been treated or, if untreated, that has been symptomatic or clinically significant
- Diabetes mellitus requiring hypoglycemic medications
- Disturbance of consciousness without satisfactory explanation of the cause
- Heart replacement
- Myocardial infarction
- Permanent cardiac pacemaker
- A personality disorder that is severe enough to have repeatedly manifested itself by overt acts
- Substance abuse
- Substance dependence
- Transient loss of control of nervous system function(s) without satisfactory explanation of the cause.
What if I just started in Aviation?
You can also be protected! What if the same scenario happened to you during flight training? As a trainee pilot, you should be preparing yourself and taking care of the risk of losing your ability to fly.
Loss of training expenses insurance provides peace of mind during the flight training process. If your licence is suspended on medical grounds, loss of training expense insurance will pay for the completed flight training.
Flight training is expensive. The entire course to become a licensed commercial pilot can be over $100,000. The cost is a good investment assuming you can start earning an income as a professional pilot. If you lose your license, it will be challenging or impossible to pay off all that debt.
The most money earned by professional pilots will come many few years after finishing flight training. Low hour pilot jobs pay less and come with fewer benefits.
How could my life be different with the correct Insurance?
Aviation is incredibly unique compared to many other jobs and industries. Pilots and Flight Attendants receive training with a particular skill-set that does not translate into other jobs easily. It is difficult to find other work as a pilot and the years of training, experience and knowledge are hard to carry over to alternative careers.
Flying is simply the best way for crew to produce an income and provide for their families. If that is taken away by an unexpected accident or underlying heart condition, it can quickly become difficult to provide for your family.
Unlike office-oriented jobs, if someone has a medical event, even a major one, they can take short-term disability and be back to work at their desk in no time. That isn’t the case for flight crew. Depending on the condition, we may never step foot back in the aircraft again.
What if John, the pilot who experienced a mild stroke in his forties had loss of licence insurance? How would his life be different for the next few years?
John had one lucky break. The training department allowed him to take on an instructor role temporarily and help the newly hired pilots with their training. However, going from an experienced Captain’s pay and schedule to that of a part-time instructor was devastating for his finances.
Having a plan with loss of licence insurance would have given him more time to focus on his health without worrying when the next pay will come in. Paying his mortgage, taking care of his family, and not needing to go into financial emergency mode.
He will face more bills during the process of regaining his medical certificate. These include expensive medical procedures, tests and observations. These will be challenging to cover on his heavily reduced income.
How can Mach8Zero help me?
Just like it is the Captain’s job to identify hazards and make a plan to avoid them, it is now your job to be proactive and create a plan to secure your future and the future of your family.
Mach8zero offer complete insurance coverage. We operate a boutique aviation insurance broker specialising in pilot loss of licence, crew PA cover, loss of training expenses, life insurance, general aviation, plus hull and liability coverage.
Regardless of where you live, who you work for, your race, sex or nationality, Mach8zero have the tools and resources to get you covered and provide security in your aviation career.
The insurance coverage is provided by world-renowned insurance carriers including Lloyd’s of London. Our insurance partners have only the very best in claims paying ability all rated A or higher including Lloyds who have been providing exceptional service in the insurance industry for nearly 150 years. Paired with the aviation experience and knowledge from Mach8Zero you can be confident about insuring your future with us.
Crews often travel the world sometimes for months at a time. Learning a new culture, traditions, and language can be challenging. The medical insurance you have may not work in some other countries. Some people live in countries with free health care but work in countries that do not provide health care.
This could lead to a costly and challenging visit to the hospital abroad. International private medical insurance or IPMI eases the transition to living and working in a new country. It will help assist with leading a healthier lifestyle and provide protection if a medical event occurs.
As a global business with experienced international staff, the coverage provided by Mach8Zero is outstanding. You can trust our team to make sure you are covered wherever you travel for leisure or for work.
Make a Plan, Secure Your Aviation Future
Mach8Zero make it simple and easy to ensure you have a wonderful career in aviation. From new student pilots to experienced international pilots and flight attendants, it is your responsibility to protect your career.
The insurance offerings from Mach8zero include loss of training expense insurance, international private medical insurance, life insurance, loss of license insurance and global travel insurance.
If you find yourself in the position of needing coverage, then you are vulnerable. Schedule a call today to learn more about the low-cost ways you can protect your future with Mach8Zero.