Flight Deck Procedures
The yellow shirt will signal the pilot when the aircraft is fully chocked and chained down.
- Apply the gust lock.
- Complete the postlanding checklist.
Shut down the engine only when signaled by the yellow shirt; a brown shirt (plane captain) will monitor
To ensure precise spotting on the catapult, you must follow the taxi directors signals. The following is a
list of visual signals for catapult operations.
NOTE: Ensure the takeoff checklist is completed and trim set to 3.5 degrees noseup with flaps/slats set to
full prior to passing the JBD. Roger the weight board.
Extend launch bar: director rests right elbow in left palm at waist level with right arm up at waist level
and then brings right hand down to horizontal position.
Engaging nose wheel steering: director points right index finger to his nose and presents a lateral wave
with open palm of the left hand at shoulder height.
Taxi: director extends arms forward at shoulder level with hands upraised at eye level, palms facing
toward each other and then moves hands horizontally back and forth across the front of chest, speed of
arm movement indicating desired speed.
Slight turn left/right: director will nod head in direction of turn while giving move ahead signal.
Brakes on (when in holdback): director extends arms above head with open palms toward aircraft and
then closes fists.
Tension: director extends arms overhead with fists closed and then opened with palms forward (indica-
tion to release brakes); then hand toward bow is swept down to a 45-degree position toward deck, while
other hand is swept up 45 degrees toward sky (it is mandatory for the pilot to go to MRT).
Retract launch bar: director rests right elbow in left palm with right arm extended horizontally at waist
level and then raised to vertical.
Engine runup: Catapult Officer/Catapult Safety Petty Officer (CSPO) makes circular motion with index
and middle finger at head level.
Acknowledge salute: Catapult Officer/CSPO returns salute.
Launch signal: Catapult Officer/CSPO extends arm overhead and sweeps upraised hand downward in
direction of the launch, touching the deck and returning the hand to horizontal in the direction of the
Hang fire: Catapult Officer/CSPO extends right-hand index finger overhead and points horizontally at
left palm extended vertically.
Suspend: Catapult Officer/CSPO raises arms above head with wrists crossed (indicating the launch is
to be suspended).