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An overview of spatial disorientation as a factor in aviation accidents and inci
3 December 2007

The Australian Transportation Safety Board (ATSB) released a research report examining the problem of spatial disorientation.
The report explains that the chances of a spatial disorientation event occurring in flight can be reduced by a series of simple preventive measures, many of which can be attended to before flight. These include flying when fit and well to do so, not flying under the influence of alcohol or medications, avoiding visual flight rules into instrument meteorological conditions, increasing awareness of spatial disorientation illusions and planning for their possible appearance at different stages of flight in the pre-flight planning process.
The ATSB report encourages pilots who have had a spatial disorientation event to share their experiences with their aviation colleagues, either informally, or through magazines, journals and web-based forums.
A more open approach to acknowledging and discussing spatial disorientation and its various causes will make a valuable contribution to a better understanding of this common human factor. (ATSB)