Ten Commandments of the Flight Deck
An old Chief Aviation Boatswain’s Mate named Mose led his people out upon the flight deck. He bade them wait patiently while he climbed the mountain known as the island to confer with the Gods. After forty minutes he returned with the Ten Commandments of the Flight Deck etched in a wheel book:
TEN COMMANDMENTS OF THE FLIGHT DECK
I. THOU SHALT NEVER VENTURE UPON THE ROOF DURING FLIGHT OPS UNLESS ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY, FOR THOU KNOWEST IT IS THE MOST DANGEROUS PLACE ON THE SEA.
II. THOU SHALT CARE FOR AND MONITOR DAILY THE STATUS OF THY FLIGHT DECK GEAR AS IF THY LIFE DEPENDED ON IT, FOR IT DOES.
III. THOU SHALT ALWAYS ENDEAVOR TO KEEP THY HEAD ON A SWIVEL, LEST THE TOMCAT’S TAIL OR THE CORSAIR’S MOUTH HURT THEE BADLY.
IV. THOU SHALT NEVER BE WITHOUT THY FLASHLIGHT AT NIGHT.
V. THOU SHALT NEVER WALK OR CRAWL UNDER AN UP TAILHOOK.
VI. THOU SHALT CARRY THE GOSPEL TO ALL ENDS OF THE SHIP THAT THE PORT CATWALK IS A NO-MAN’S-LAND DURING LAUNCHES AND RECOVERIES.
VII. THOU SHALT NOT ANGER THE HANDLER, NOR THE FLIGHT DECK OFFICER, NOR THE CATAPULT OFFICER, NOR THE ARRESTING GEAR OFFICER, NOR THE AIR BOS’N, NOR ANYONE THAT IS A SERVANT OF THE AIR BOSS.
VIII. THOU SHALT FOREVER RECOGNIZE THY RESPONSIBILITY, REGARDLESS OF PAY GRADE, TO DISPLAY COMMON SENSE AND A LITTLE INITIATIVE WHENEVER THOU OBSERVETH A SAFETY VIOLATION IN PROGRESS.
IX. THOU SHALT ALWAYS BE VIGILANT AGAINST THY INCESSANT ENEMIES: COMPLACENCY, EXPEDIENCY, IGNORANCE, FATIGUE, AND F.O.D.
X. THOU SHALT NEVER FORGET THAT THE BOTTOM LINE IS TO PROTECT THE NATIONAL INTERESTS OF OUR COUNTRY.
Carry out these commandments all your tour on the roof and thou shalt live a long and fruitful life.