Motion Induced Blindness

Crazy Eyes
I received a forwarded email from my good friend Archie Philips in Harvest Alabama. It says in part:

“You may find this interesting, it explains how drivers pull in front of motorcycles and say ” I didn’t see him”. Lack of motion Induced Blindness (pilots and drivers too)

Good info and demo. Lack of motion Induced Blindness was presented as a flying issue, but one can also miss things (pedestrians, motorcycles, other cars) while driving, so, keep your heads and eyes moving. The below link is a great illustration of what was taught about scanning outside the cockpit when military pilots went through training they were told to scan the horizon for a short distance, stop momentarily, and repeat the process.

This was the most effective technique to locate other aircraft. It was emphasized repeatedly to not fix one’s gaze for more than a couple of seconds on any single object. The instructors, some of whom were combat veterans with years of experience, instructed pilots to continually “keep your eyes moving and head on a swivel” because this was the best way to survive, not only in combat, but from peacetime hazards (like a midair collision) as well.”

Actual author unknown

Here is the link to the visual demonstration of this effect:
Montion Induced Blindness”

As an RC pilot, I am wondering how many pilots who fly into trees, flagpoles, barns and other objects are suffering from the same effect. I’m not suggesting you should “swivel” your eyes away from your aircraft, just be aware of what can happen. Your gaze if fixed on your aircraft may cause the stationary things in your view (things near you) to disapear or become less aware to you with the background zipping around behind your aircraft. Just a thought. Dave, Radical RC

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