Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM), page 419

Index   418 -- Page 419 -- 420

Chapter 6. Emergency Procedures
Section 1. General

6-1-1. Pilot Responsibility and Authority

a. The pilot-in-command of an aircraft is directly
responsible for and is the final authority as to the
operation of that aircraft. In an emergency requiring
immediate action, the pilot-in-command may
deviate from any rule in 14 CFR Part 91, Subpart A,
General, and Subpart B, Flight Rules, to the extent
required to meet that emergency.
14 CFR Section 91.3(b).
b. If the emergency authority of 14 CFR
Section 91.3(b) is used to deviate from the provisions
of an ATC clearance, the pilot-in-command must
notify ATC as soon as possible and obtain an
amended clearance.

c. Unless deviation is necessary under the
emergency authority of 14 CFR Section 91.3, pilots
of IFR flights experiencing two-way radio commu-
nications failure are expected to adhere to the
procedures prescribed under "IFR operations,
two-way radio communications failure."

14 CFR Section 91.185.

6-1-2. Emergency Condition- Request
Assistance Immediately

a. An emergency can be either a distress or
urgency condition as defined in the Pilot/Controller
Glossary. Pilots do not hesitate to declare an
emergency when they are faced with distress
conditions such as fire, mechanical failure, or
structural damage. However, some are reluctant to
report an urgency condition when they encounter
situations which may not be immediately perilous,
but are potentially catastrophic. An aircraft is in at
least an urgency condition the moment the pilot
becomes doubtful about position, fuel endurance,
weather, or any other condition that could adversely
affect flight safety. This is the time to ask for help, not
after the situation has developed into a distress

b. Pilots who become apprehensive for their safety
for any reason should request assistance immediately.
Ready and willing help is available in the form of
radio, radar, direction finding stations and other

aircraft. Delay has caused accidents and cost lives.
Safety is not a luxury! Take action!

General 6-1-1

Page 419 of the Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM.pdf)
AIM: Official Guide to Basic Flight Information and ATC Procedures

Index   418 -- Page 419 -- 420