Once the pilot gets his certificate, he takes his family and friends for rides, but within a month or so he runs out of excuses to fly, as well as the money to pay for it. Many months can go by without a flight, and our inexperienced pilot’s skills are rapidly deteriorating. Finally, 23 months after earning his private pilot certificate, he is planning a family vacation to a distant location and realizes this is a great opportunity to use his pilot’s license. All that pilot needs to do to be considered legally current and competent to fly his family on an extended cross-country is to go out to the airport on a clear, calm day and complete three takeoffs and landings. The odds of that pilot being challenged even in good weather would be high. Throw in the pressure to get to the destination, along with the usual crosswinds, unfamiliar airports and bad weather, and it is little wonder that the noncommercial accident rate is so high.