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Topic: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: eksath
Posted 2013-07-10 06:45:28 and read 22567 times.

The first Op Ed on Airliners.net is up!

We welcome feedback and review. It will probably be a dogfight but that is what an Op-Ed piece does. It also is to promote exchange of ideas and to be thought provoking.

This Op-Ed expressing personal viewpoints of the writer who is unaffiliated with the Airliners.net editorial board in any shape or form. The work is presented here in its unedited form. Opposing and/or contrasting viewpoints are welcome and will be presented on this site with the same prominence. - Suresh A.Atapattu-Article Editor/Airliners.net [eksath@airliners.net]

"My Flight Training Experience in Korea"

http://www.airliners.net/aviation-articles/read.main?id=161

Your thoughts/comments are welcome. You can either email me or post here. Standard forum/site rules apply.

[Edited 2013-07-10 13:56:22 by moderators]

[Edited 2013-07-10 16:46:41 by SA7700]

[Edited 2013-07-11 13:57:22 by moderators]

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: AeroWesty
Posted 2013-07-10 06:58:28 and read 22514 times.

While I'm happy to see new material placed in the forum for information and discussion, the protocol for an Op-Ed is to have the name and qualifications of the author disclosed, which doesn't appear to be the case in this example.

What was posted at your link was the same as what appeared in reply 117 of the below thread, but without the name of the author masked as it is in the Op-Ed:

OZ 777 Crash At SFO Part 7 (by moderators Jul 9 2013 in Civil Aviation)

If Op-Eds on a.net are going to be nothing other than unattributed material, then the standards aren't very high.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: eksath
Posted 2013-07-10 07:16:28 and read 22350 times.

Quoting AeroWesty (Reply 1):
While I'm happy to see new material placed in the forum for information and discussion, the protocol for an Op-Ed is to have the name and qualifications of the author disclosed, which doesn't appear to be the case in this example.

Indeed. We tested the information in this with a number of veteran pilots to ascertain veracity. It was a judgement call to proceed based upon the available information rather than wait. We would like to attribute it directly. We have prominently displayed our willingness to have an opposing or contrasting piece. Point taken and accepted.

Quoting AeroWesty (Reply 1):
What was posted at your link was the same as what appeared in reply 117 of the below thread, but without the name of the author masked as it is in the Op-Ed:

We received the information a lot earlier but sat on it as we tried to ascertain veracity and figure out how to present it. In the meantime, it started circulating online and you will probably find it popping up in other sources as well.

However, this would mean that it is not hidden as post #107 on thread #7 on this site.

Quoting AeroWesty (Reply 1):
If Op-Eds on a.net are going to be nothing other than unattributed material, then the standards aren't very high.

This is a start and I have tried to address these issue above. As i said before, you point is taken. Thanks for your feedback.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: zeke
Posted 2013-07-10 07:24:53 and read 22253 times.

I commented on this a little in the crash thread where it first appeared.

"It is not a normal situation with normal progression from new hire, right seat, left seat taking a decade or two. One big difference is that ex-Military pilots are given super-seniority and progress to the left seat much faster. Compared to the US, they also upgrade fairly rapidly because of the phenomenal growth by all Asian air carriers."

Fast progression to being Captain is prevalent in many areas, not just Asia. It even happens in the US with new airlines like Virgin, jetblue, very common in Europe with Ryanair, Easyjet. Common in the middle east where it is not unusual for a FO to spend 4 years in the right seat before being promoted as Captain at Emirates.

It is true that in legacy carriers in the USA it takes a long time to get a command, however a lot other smaller feeder airlines it is not uncommon to see very young Captains of commercial jet liners. The FAA also now wants pilots to have 1500 hrs is commercially trained, or 750 hours if trained in the military for airline operations. Even in the USA they give their military pilots a leg up. The flight crew in this accident had a lot of experience, I would dare say a lot more than a lot of flights operating in the USA. Experience means nothing unless you are proficient and current, as a captain doing his initial line training on the 777, and the training captain new to the role, neither were proficient and current in their roles.

To suggest a pilot with 10,000 hours is under experienced, when already having been a Captain for many years is baseless.

"One of the first things I learned was that the pilots kept a web-site and reported on every training session. I don’t think this was officially sanctioned by the company, but after one or two simulator periods, a database was building on me (and everyone else) that told them exactly how I ran the sessions, what to expect on checks, and what to look out for."

Every pilot I know of talks and gets information from other pilots, it is how we learn. We share operating techniques, study material, port notes, and even talk about others we get trained by or fly with.

To suggest this sort of thing is something unique to Korea, have a look at http://www.airbusdriver.net/ where the current notes on the US Airways A320 checkride is available under "Checkrides".

The FAA publishes all their exam questions, anyone can buy an iPad app or computer program that will help them pass the FAA written, it is possible to pass the FAA written just using this software to learn the questions, and never opening the actual regulations (and I suspect by not even operating an aircraft, just rote earning). Organisations like ALL ATPs do nothing but prep people for ATP check rides, with specific check pilots, on a specific aircraft, and specific routes. The inference that what is happening at OZ is unique to Korea is far from true, it is happening every day in the USA.

"By the way, KAL dictated the profiles for all sessions and we just administered them."

Yes airlines do dictate the profiles and conditions used in checks, this is normally due to the training matrix that is used on the recurrent program, certain items need to be done say every 6 months (engine failure), others maybe every 2 years (TCAS, GPWS, Windshear). The profiles make sure that every pilot therefore meets their airlines AOC requirements and covers all of the regulators items during the entire cycle. The profiles are provided to the regulator as proof that they will meet the required training profile for all pilots.

Boeing in this case is just a service provider, they should be doing exactly what the airlines contract them to do, it is the airline that holds the AOC and responsible for training, not Boeing.

Some airlines like Emirates use the same check profile, at the same airport for every check. The checks is, and should be a box ticking exercise, the pilot should be able to do everything required (passengers expect this of them every flight). The remainder of the simulator session can then be used then as training, where they would expose pilots to things that they would hopefully never see during line operations (like a diversion due to a cargo fire).

Caprain B's approach in given new ways to to trigger an RTO is good, you want to see that in the simulator. The parts about the hold and radar vectors I think is setting someone up. For no good reason pilots put themselves under a lot of pressure for these checks, and they fail themselves. It is true that the instructors are not allowed to intervene in the test, they can however give an adequate briefing. A lot of times these sessions are very fake, as we do not have many of the normal cues that we would see online, for example during a flight a crew will have the chance during the cruise to pull the charts out and review the approach. Often in these sort of test the simulator is positioned between approaches so they can get different types of approaches done during the session, people get out of sync with what they would normally do.

"So, when I hear that a 10,000 hour Korean captain was vectored in for a 17-mile final at SFO and cleared for a visual approach in CAVOK weather, it raises the hair on the back of my neck. "

There have been a lot more fatal accidents in the USA than South Korea, the generalizations in the article about poor skills are not reflected in the accident statistics.

http://aviation-safety.net/database/country/country.php?id=N

United States of America
Capital: Washington DC
Continent: North America
Fatal accidents in United States of America: 1344
Accidents fatalities in United States of America: 14212

http://aviation-safety.net/database/country/country.php?id=HL

South Korea
Capital: Seoul
Continent: Asia
Fatal accidents in South Korea: 24
Accidents fatalities in South Korea: 532

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: aaexecplat
Posted 2013-07-10 07:44:20 and read 22080 times.

Quoting zeke (Reply 3):
There have been a lot more fatal accidents in the USA than South Korea, the generalizations in the article about poor skills are not reflected in the accident statistics.

http://aviation-safety.net/database/country/country.php?id=N

United States of America
Capital: Washington DC
Continent: North America
Fatal accidents in United States of America: 1344
Accidents fatalities in United States of America: 14212

http://aviation-safety.net/database/country/country.php?id=HL

South Korea
Capital: Seoul
Continent: Asia
Fatal accidents in South Korea: 24
Accidents fatalities in South Korea: 532

Zeke.

I highly respect you, but you can do better than that...Looking at these statistics doesn't mean anything unless one calculates an accident or fatalities PERCENTAGE which requires that one know the number of flight movements. And I would also pick a timeframe that is more recent...what happened 30 years ago in Korea or the US is irrelevant by today's standards. Let's pick 10 years for argument's sake...

The question I would ask is: "What is the accident and fatalities percentage per 1k/1m flights (takeoff/landings) in the last 10 years in the US vs South Korea."

The results of such a query would be interesting and somewhat valid. But to compare the USA and Liechtenstein based on total accident/fatality numbers seems silly.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: aaexecplat
Posted 2013-07-10 07:46:16 and read 22054 times.

BTW...I have not calculated the numbers I just advocated. But I am willing to bet that the number of flights operated in the US was MORE than 28x the flights operated in South Korea in the timeframe the ICAO uses, which would mean the US is a safer general aviation environment.

But I am prepared to be proven wrong.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: Flighty
Posted 2013-07-10 07:50:21 and read 22002 times.

Quoting zeke (Reply 3):
There have been a lot more fatal accidents in the USA than South Korea, the generalizations in the article about poor skills are not reflected in the accident statistics.

Purely talking about statistics, we would have to scale those numbers by the all-time RPMs in both countries, in each decade in question (i.e. it is not fair to count USA deaths in the 1950s against Korean deaths in the 1990s - because it doesn't prove who is safer then, or now).

Once we do that, it would be shocking if South Korea matches US accidents per RPM or per departure during any recent decade -- especially per departure.

Edit: The article was interesting for 2 reasons. One, SK is a different country with different flying. The point about 10,000 hr logbooks is very thought provoking.

Secondly, Korean culture comments were interesting - (1) totally well studied; (2) didn't 'learn by doing' and never felt free to make mistakes; (3) share everything with colleagues to pass the test, which is called 'cheating' in the West but quite normal in Asia.

These all reflect different standards of success -- excellence, vs. passing a test that was designed to detect excellence. Those are different goals.

[Edited 2013-07-10 08:16:35]

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: Aaron747
Posted 2013-07-10 08:12:43 and read 21833 times.

With respect to the Op-Ed writer, there is always more to the story. Aside from the fact that I've working on this side of the world long enough to know certain Western Type A personalities usually get shown the door, whether they are training specialists or not, there are significant facts he left out of the piece.

One that stands out would be that in the case of KE and OZ, the ROK is a tiny country with a lot of air service domestically. While there may certainly be canned sim checks (as Zeke points out, these exist all over the place, not just Asia) and a tendency to promote military veterans, this has nothing to do with the fact that these guys do indeed know how to fly.

Look at a map of Korea, pick some airports, and take a close look at any of the many navigational websites that are out there. With the exception of patches of the west coast, the entire country is mountainous. For the pilots who cut their teeth in the domestic system, there is plenty of challenging flying to be done. Summer in Asia is full of squall lines, winter is snowy with a strong Mongolian jet that brings incredible winds, and so on - and that's what these guys operate with all the time.

Tell me anything you want about the company culture, the obstacles to challenging management in that society, or the punitive standards that are imposed on pilots who show up on the wrong side of FOQA data - I think there's something to that all. But don't tell me these guys don't know how to fly airplanes - because they damn well do.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: AeroWesty
Posted 2013-07-10 08:34:55 and read 21688 times.

I hope folks will be posting their rebuttals to the Op-Ed to the actual article:

http://www.airliners.net/aviation-articles/read.main?id=160

(Link reposted without the admin stuff on it.)

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: zeke
Posted 2013-07-10 08:41:17 and read 21628 times.

Quoting aaexecplat (Reply 4):
Let's pick 10 years for argument's sake...

Before this incident, the only hull loss or fatal accident in the past 10 years involving a Korean carrier was the 744F that went into the sea on the way to PVG as a result of a cargo fire. Not that different to the UPS 744F hull loss in DXB.

Quoting aaexecplat (Reply 4):
The question I would ask is: "What is the accident and fatalities percentage per 1k/1m flights (takeoff/landings) in the last 10 years in the US vs South Korea."

Before this incident, the stats would have said that Korea was safer using your 10 year time frame. There has been no passenger fatalities with Korean carriers in the past 10 years until this accident. We are also waiting to hear from the coroner to see if the two passengers died as a result of this accident or otherwise.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: cschleic
Posted 2013-07-10 09:01:12 and read 21479 times.

Quoting zeke (Reply 3):

http://aviation-safety.net/database/country/country.php?id=N

United States of America
Capital: Washington DC
Continent: North America
Fatal accidents in United States of America: 1344
Accidents fatalities in United States of America: 14212

http://aviation-safety.net/database/country/country.php?id=HL

South Korea
Capital: Seoul
Continent: Asia
Fatal accidents in South Korea: 24
Accidents fatalities in South Korea: 532

Any such statistics, for a Korean-based airline or anywhere else, would have to look at the accident rate as a percentage of total flights, as noted above, but also at those airlines' flight outside the home country, not just in, as they fly all over the world. The same goes for U.S. airlines operating in foreign countries. Other than in countries that are geographically very large, there's probably a good chance that any given accident happens to an airline operating outside its home country.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: EASTERN747
Posted 2013-07-10 09:12:23 and read 21386 times.

If the writer of the OP is correct, I think there is no reason to think it isn't, then remember this fact. FOUR seasoned pilots were sitting in the cockpit all watching the landing, NO ONE said anything until the last seconds. If the first officer had said something about no clearance for takeoff, KLM and Pan Am would have never happened. I don't care who is PIC, if my rear end is in the cockpit and I see or feel something is wrong, I'm going to say something. Like "I like to point out we are 30 knots slower and way too low"

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: DTWPurserBoy
Posted 2013-07-10 09:15:41 and read 21365 times.

During the 90's and early 2000's, KAL had a serious issue with hull loses. I remember how we speculated on how much they must have had to pay for insurance. But finally, DL performed a full safety audit, just as they did with AF after the A330 disaster. Sometimes you are too close to the problem and it takes an outsider to come in and point out the weak spots. You also run into that "we have always done it that way" argument. As far as I know KE is now a safe and reliable partner and I am sure the same can be said about Asiana.

As has been pointed out on other threads, airline accidents do not occur as a result of one mistake. It is the culmination of a litany of errors. Hopefully, we will all learn a lot as a result of this tragedy. You can be assured that it will be extensively covered in annual training, especially after the NTSB report is finally published.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: Klaus
Posted 2013-07-10 09:16:39 and read 21343 times.

Quoting EASTERN747 (Reply 11):
FOUR seasoned pilots were sitting in the cockpit all watching the landing

No, just three. The relief captain was back in the cabin. Only the relief FO was in a cockpit jumpseat as well.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: DTWPurserBoy
Posted 2013-07-10 09:25:02 and read 21253 times.

BTW, I found the OpEd piece to be fascinating. It is really great to hear from an insider what goes on behind the scenes at KE and OZ training. Sounds like he had quite a challenge but at the end of the day if you tell your employer that he is doing things wrong, you are putting your job on the line but in the best interests of the passengers and crews it had to be done. Constructive criticism is not always welcome.

I look forward to more such articles.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: tommytoyz
Posted 2013-07-10 10:51:07 and read 20901 times.

I have no doubt as to the veracity of the article. Stating the truth may hurt some - or even insult some feelings, but the truth is the truth - failure to deal with it is being in denial of the truth. Being truthful and accepting it, is the best course of action for all.

In any case, I don't think it is wise to just lump this accident into a statistic or into the accident rates, without looking at it in context as to what type of accident it was. This was an accident where a large airliner with zero known material defects, was flown into the ground on a CAVOK day due to very basic and simple errors on the part of the pilot crew.

If anyone wants to defend the Korean pilots and crew and Korean pilot culture, they should point out how many similar accidents have occurred in other countries. Korea has had similar accidents with large airliners, like the one in Guam with the 747 - a perfectly good large airliner where the pilots flew into the ground on approach. I can only think of the American Airlines B757 flight into terrain in Colombia at night as being a similar accident to the Guam KAL accident.

However, on a CAVOK day with a large airliner flying into the ground on landing due to pilot error? I can't think of one in the USA in the past 10 years or more. If there is one, maybe someone here can mention it.

The accident RATE needs to be compared, not just the number of accidents, to get a more accurate assessment, IMHO. And even better would be comparing the accident RATE of similar accidents to each.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: shufflemoomin
Posted 2013-07-10 11:22:13 and read 20689 times.

Can I just request that someone please proofread these articles in the future?

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: aluminumtubing
Posted 2013-07-10 11:40:32 and read 20587 times.

This Op Ed was echoed by one of my best friends who worked for Boeing's training subsidiary.



Quoting zeke (Reply 3):
There have been a lot more fatal accidents in the USA than South Korea, the generalizations in the article about poor skills are not reflected in the accident statistics

There is no comparison, as the air transport industry in the US is many, many times larger than that of Korea.

The info coming out from the NTSB, is absolutely amazing. So far, I can't fathom what appeared to happen in this situation.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: WNbob
Posted 2013-07-10 12:03:31 and read 20448 times.

I agree with one thing the author says, when they quote you flying hours, that's not nearly enough, as what 90%+ of those hours one is coasting on autopilot? A new yardstick is long overdue.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: canoecarrier
Posted 2013-07-10 12:36:53 and read 20180 times.

Quoting zeke (Reply 3):
Fast progression to being Captain is prevalent in many areas, not just Asia. It even happens in the US with new airlines like Virgin, jetblue, very common in Europe with Ryanair, Easyjet. Common in the middle east where it is not unusual for a FO to spend 4 years in the right seat before being promoted as Captain at Emirates.

I'd probably say it's a "relatively" fast progression. I know pilots at both Virgin and B6. All of them had quite a bit of time working for other airlines before they were hired there. Even some of the early hires at B6 had lots of commuter or FO at a major time before they were hired there.

However, military pilots here, just like elsewhere seem to get preference. I've seen that everywhere I've worked.

Quoting zeke (Reply 3):

It is true that in legacy carriers in the USA it takes a long time to get a command, however a lot other smaller feeder airlines it is not uncommon to see very young Captains of commercial jet liners.

This is what interests me really. I've got probably around 10 years airport ops experience. When I was working the GA side I saw flight instructors living off left over business jet catering just trying to get the 500 or so hours to get a commuter FO spot. Where they would get $20K a year to fly. It doesn't seem like that's the experience others have around the world. As others have mentioned, that doesn't always mean we do it the right way over here, but it gives the impression that in some parts of the world commercial flying really means managing automation.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: silentbob
Posted 2013-07-10 12:54:14 and read 19799 times.

Quoting WNbob (Reply 18):

I agree with one thing the author says, when they quote you flying hours, that's not nearly enough, as what 90%+ of those hours one is coasting on autopilot? A new yardstick is long overdue.

The FAA has stated concerns with the decline of stick and rudder skills among major airline pilots.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: airdfw
Posted 2013-07-10 13:51:34 and read 18785 times.

Thanks for the op-ed. I think from the history (KL hiring DL for audit and the fact that it is well known that Korean pilots have problems with contradicting based on seniority) this op-ed is very timely and I appreciate it.

I do not understand now why US pilots association is criticizing NTSB for communicating the information from accident (about the auto-throttles not being engaged). Could the auto throttles switch can turned on at the last minute?

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/10/us...-failure-had-role-in-crash.html?hp

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: MCOflyer
Posted 2013-07-10 15:07:48 and read 17548 times.

Quoting DTWPurserBoy (Reply 14):
BTW, I found the OpEd piece to be fascinating. It is really great to hear from an insider what goes on behind the scenes at KE and OZ training. Sounds like he had quite a challenge but at the end of the day if you tell your employer that he is doing things wrong, you are putting your job on the line but in the best interests of the passengers and crews it had to be done. Constructive criticism is not always welcome.

I look forward to more such articles.

I agree 100%. It would be very interesting to see more articles like this. In all types of training, people do build profiles on the instructors on what to expect. I would imagine that the instructors would try to change it up to prevent this.

KH

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: DTWPurserBoy
Posted 2013-07-10 15:31:36 and read 17197 times.

Quoting airdfw (Reply 21):
Thanks for the op-ed. I think from the history (KL hiring DL for audit and the fact that it is well known that Korean pilots have problems with contradicting based on seniority) this op-ed is very timely and I appreciate it.
Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 15):
If anyone wants to defend the Korean pilots and crew and Korean pilot culture, they should point out how many similar accidents have occurred in other countries. Korea has had similar accidents with large airliners, like the one in Guam with the 747 - a perfectly good large airliner where the pilots flew into the ground on approach.

Yesterday I started a thread regarding what I perceived as cultural differences in Korea and was hung out to dry. My remarks were based on my own personal experiences and have now been echoed by many others. The moderators elected to delete the thread but I found it interesting today that if you go to CNN's main page you will see a clip regarding this very subject.

I am sure the moderators felt that it was just too controversial a subject and I will, of course, accept their judgment. Some seemed to feel that I was singling out an ancient people for criticism which was never my intention. I cited the KE accident history and the corrective methods taken that have resulted in a much safer carrier which, at the end of the day, is our goal.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: mandala499
Posted 2013-07-10 16:26:25 and read 16421 times.

Quoting eksath (Reply 2):
We tested the information in this with a number of veteran pilots to ascertain veracity.

Veteran pilots of what nationality? I have spoken with veteran pilots (expats of different nationalities to the author of the article) with time in Korea (at coincidentally roughly the same time period as the author of the article) at both Asiana and Korean Airlines before this accident took place and, sorry, their recollections are very different. Sure it ain't perfect, but it does make me question the merits of the "nightmares" expressed in the article.

I agree with the viewpoints expressed by Zeke in reply 3.
Fast progression happens in many parts of the world.

If you look at http://www.jacdec.de/jacdec_safety_ranking_2012.htm
You'll see airlines who have fast progression, and have narrowbody first officers starting their line flying on those narrowbodies with less than 500 hours total time, and rank higher than the "former airline" of the person writing that Op-Ed article.

United is ranked #31...
Let's see...
Cathay (ranked #3) has freshies flying as relief FO on widebodies, and then flying as full first officers on widebodies... we don't see CX crashing planes more often per revenue seat kilometers there do we?
British Airways, put youngsters fresh out of flying school on the right seat of A320s, and they had if I recall correctly, the youngest A320 captain in the whole world... well, they're ranked #10, unsafe? Well we don't see them crashing more often than United do we?
Same with Lufthansa at #11, Easyjet, Thomas Cook, Air Berlin, Air Asia... all are ranked higher than United.

And that ranking, uses "hull loss accidents and serious incidents in the last 30 years of operations divided by revenue passenger kilometers performed in the same time", taking also into account IOSA audits, USOAP, and also discriminates against more recent accidents... Yet, these so called "younger" airlines using the criticized fast progression, and hiring guys fresh out of flying schools into narrowbody aircraft, are deemed safer...

However, as that statistics show, Asiana does have slightly over triple risk index number than United. With US Airways only ranking slightly better than Asiana, I wonder why we don't hear nightmare safety stories about US Airways?

Quoting DTWPurserBoy (Reply 23):
I cited the KE accident history and the corrective methods taken that have resulted in a much safer carrier which, at the end of the day, is our goal.

The author stated 2003-2008 period. Interestingly, my sources are also expats from the same period, yet the stories are very different. However, make the period 5 years earlier, then I would not be surprised if it's worse than what the author wrote.

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 7):
Tell me anything you want about the company culture, the obstacles to challenging management in that society, or the punitive standards that are imposed on pilots who show up on the wrong side of FOQA data - I think there's something to that all. But don't tell me these guys don't know how to fly airplanes - because they damn well do.

Oh yeah, talking to the FOQA and Flight Safety guys at those airlines do show there's more to the story than just what was written in the article. What repercussions do a pilot imposing his seniority over his colleague and resulted in a FOQA event? The other side of safety (operations quality assurance) does sound more assuring. Perhaps the author of the article never knew what went on over there outside the simulator training...

I don't think the author is lying, but one must also take the article with caution. There are limits to its validity

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: wjcandee
Posted 2013-07-10 17:09:37 and read 16326 times.

Quoting zeke (Reply 3):
To suggest a pilot with 10,000 hours is under experienced, when already having been a Captain for many years is baseless.

Except when he lets the aircraft speed decay more than 20kts below Vref, doesn't halt the unstabilized approach, only realizes that they are low because of the PAPI, and only after that realizes that the autopilot ain't doing what he anticipated. All those hours don't seem to have taught either pilot very much: the PF who obviously didn't have his hand on the throttles (vis Bucharest) and the Training Captain who did no training or at least no monitoring.

What a joke.

When you plant it through inattention, you're subject to criticism. When it seems systemic, it's a valid concern.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: wjcandee
Posted 2013-07-10 17:18:37 and read 16228 times.

Quoting mandala499 (Reply 24):
we don't see CX crashing planes more often per revenue seat kilometers there do we?

Ugh. Where to start. Hull losses are so infrequent that NASA repeatedly says that they offer nothing statistically about "safety". Operational incidents, on the other hand, can reveal a lot. So if I were making your argument, I would evaluate those.

Second, revenue seat kilometers is a stupid measure because it factors in aircraft size. Don't think that's valid. You would be better off using a unitary measure like departures (because each one presumably has a landing) or cycles. As time in flight or miles flown tend to be predominantly spent in automated cruise, it doesn't say much about piloting skill or practices. Down in traffic, where changes need to be made quickly and the workload is high, is where the rubber meets the road. So I think a measure like "per thousand departures" would be a much more revealing measure. Otherwise, you are putting your thumb on the scale in favor of carriers with significant long haul routes and calling them "safer". They aren't.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: PITrules
Posted 2013-07-10 17:22:12 and read 16338 times.

Quoting zeke (Reply 3):
The FAA publishes all their exam questions, anyone can buy an iPad app or computer program that will help them pass the FAA written, it is possible to pass the FAA written just using this software to learn the questions, and never opening the actual regulations (and I suspect by not even operating an aircraft, just rote earning).

The FAA written exam covers material that is learned on a ROTE basis. Things such as reading aviation weather reports, airspace classifications, weight and balance procedures, regulations, etc.

Of the four levels of learning (rote, understanding, application, correlation), the 'rote' level in an FAA curriculum pretty much ends at the written exam, and the other levels of learning are incorporated with the actual flight training (yes, even at ALL ATPs).

Contrast this to what the O-P stated:

"The Koreans are very very bright and smart so I was puzzled by their inability to fly an airplane well. They would show up on Day 1 of training (an hour before the scheduled briefing time, in a 3-piece suit, and shined shoes) with the entire contents of the FCOM and Flight Manual totally memorized. But, putting that information to actual use was many times impossible. Crosswind landings are also an unsolvable puzzle for most of them. I never did figure it out completely, but I think I did uncover a few clues. Here is my best guess. First off, their educational system emphasizes ROTE memorization from the first day of school as little kids. As you know, that is the lowest form of learning and they act like robots. They are also taught to NEVER challenge authority and in spite of the flight training heavily emphasizing CRM/CLR, it still exists either on the surface or very subtly."

The entire training seems to end at the basic rote level without incorporating the higher levels of learning. That is the heart of the matter.

Quoting zeke (Reply 3):
Organisations like ALL ATPs do nothing but prep people for ATP check rides, with specific check pilots, on a specific aircraft, and specific routes.

Being trained in only one type of aircraft in one geographic area is nothing unusual, whether it is ALL ATPs, the local flying club, or prestigious universities such as Embry-Riddle. That's why there is differences or transition training when moving on to a new type. I don't see what point is trying to be made?.

Quoting cschleic (Reply 10):
Any such statistics, for a Korean-based airline or anywhere else, would have to look at the accident rate as a percentage of total flights, as noted above, but also at those airlines' flight outside the home country, not just in, as they fly all over the world. The same goes for U.S. airlines operating in foreign countries. Other than in countries that are geographically very large, there's probably a good chance that any given accident happens to an airline operating outside its home country.

Absolutely correct

Quoting mandala499 (Reply 24):

And that ranking, uses "hull loss accidents and serious incidents in the last 30 years of operations divided by revenue passenger kilometers performed in the same time"

This alone makes me take the data with a grain of salt. Reason being is most accidents occur during the takeoff and landing phases. Airlines with mostly long haul networks will have fewer takeoffs and landings. I would like to see a ranking of accidents related to takeoffs & landings.

Quoting mandala499 (Reply 24):
With US Airways only ranking slightly better than Asiana, I wonder why we don't hear nightmare safety stories about US Airways?

Not too long ago, we heard about USAir all the time. I vividly remember "Five accidents in five years" in the media regularly during the 1990's, although their accidents at PIT and LAX were not their fault IIRC. Delta Air Lines had much media attention in the 1980s as well, when they kept landing at the wrong airports. Delta had institutional issues at the time that needed changing, and change was done. So if you are suggesting that ONLY Asiana and Korean Air have been under this kind of scrutiny, then I respectfully disagree.




A couple other points. For those that are "offended" by this Op-Ed because it focuses on cultural and/or institutional issues, there should be no place for political correctness in a crash investigation. The issues the O-P brings up will be studied by the investigation, and rightfully so.

Furthermore, it is astounding that highly experienced check airman have been fired for failing trainees that he deems should not pass, or for not passing a certain quota.

[Edited 2013-07-10 17:25:37]

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-07-10 17:35:34 and read 16240 times.

Quoting wjcandee (Reply 26):
revenue seat kilometers is a stupid measure because it factors in aircraft size. Don't think that's valid. You would be better off using a unitary measure like departures (because each one presumably has a landing) or cycles.

Fully agree.

Regarding CX... one could argue that at least some of the reason its safety record is so much better than some other Asian carriers is indeed cultural -- CX is much more a Western airline in terms of its management and operational culture than an Asian airline.

[Edited 2013-07-10 17:51:07]

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: aviateur
Posted 2013-07-10 17:47:35 and read 16067 times.

Some of these observations are very intriguing, but it's also true that Korea spent a great deal of time and money overhauling its entire civil aviation system after that spate of accidents in the 1980s and 1990s.

In 2008, ICAO determined that Korea had the safest civil aviation system in the entire world, placing ahead of a hundred other countries. Pilot training, maintenance, ATC and airport infrastructure were all part of the criterion. I brought this up in a story I wrote for Slate magazine, here:

http://www.slate.com/articles/news_a...unways_and_korea_s_pilots_for.html

There's a pretty big disconnect between such a lofty honor and some of the things people are saying. So I'm not certain who or what to believe.


PS

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: wjcandee
Posted 2013-07-10 17:50:00 and read 16063 times.

I assume that you all have seen this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jZDjkIjuHGE

He could have been talking about this very accident. 16 years ago at the AA Flight Academy. Captain Warren Vanderburgh, the lecturer in the video, won a Flight Safety Foundation award for his Advanced Aircraft Maneuvering Program, of which the video is one part. I wonder whether now, with Cecil retired, the curriculum continues to reflect these opinions, or, like Captain Dave's "Schoolhouse" at Cactus, they also teach that the stick, throttle and rudder are the "Emergency Flight Controls" (gotta love Captain Dave).

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: wjcandee
Posted 2013-07-10 18:06:37 and read 15838 times.

Quoting aviateur (Reply 29):
There's a pretty big disconnect between such a lofty honor and some of the things people are saying. So I'm not certain who or what to believe.

You have in your face evidence of a guy with 10,000 hours flying an essentially-unstabilized final approach through the MDA, pretty-evidently without his hand on the throttles or at least totally unaware of what that throttle setting means, hopelessly-situationally-unaware of the relative energy in the aircraft, 20 kts below Vref. That's the left seat.

The right seat, unlike any Training Captain at any American carrier that I am aware of, is so disconnected from what the guy is doing that he is supposed to be riding the ass of that he doesn't notice the rapid deterioration of the airspeed (and quite possibly that A/T is not engaged), doesn't notice what the airspeed is (apparently because, "Hey, it's on autothrottle so I don't need to be checking that Junior is maintaining the proper airspeed), first notices that they are low because he happens to notice the PAPI, and then, and only then, does he notice the aircraft's energy state.

I don't think it's hard to know who to believe.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: tommytoyz
Posted 2013-07-10 18:07:59 and read 15827 times.

Quoting aviateur (Reply 29):
In 2008, ICAO determined that Korea had the safest civil aviation system in the entire world,

1. Korea has no general aviation to contend with and handle in it's system
2. A large portion of airliners operating in and out of Korea are not even Korean
3. Korea is a very small country surrounded by wide open ocean on 3 sides and no traffic from the north
4. Many captains in Korea are expats
5. Statistically speaking, there are almost no other countries with these attributes making a comparison misleading

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: AApilot2b
Posted 2013-07-10 18:14:10 and read 15678 times.

I simply remember the string of KAL accidents in the 90s that lead to scrutiny of their training practices, bad pilotage, etc.... I thought that the issues had been resolved until Asiana destroyed a perfectly good 777 on a wonderful weather summer day. Enough said....

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: Arabear
Posted 2013-07-10 18:17:16 and read 15614 times.

Quoting eksath (Reply 2):
There have been a lot more fatal accidents in the USA than South Korea, the generalizations in the article about poor skills are not reflected in the accident statistics.

http://aviation-safety.net/database/country/country.php?id=N

United States of America
Capital: Washington DC
Continent: North America
Fatal accidents in United States of America: 1344
Accidents fatalities in United States of America: 14212

http://aviation-safety.net/database/country/country.php?id=HL

South Korea
Capital: Seoul
Continent: Asia
Fatal accidents in South Korea: 24
Accidents fatalities in South Korea: 532

In addition to echoing the idea that these figures should be equivalized in some way (e.g., per 1MM take-offs and landings), the US also has a much larger GA sector that accounts for many of the accidents, if I'm not mistaken.

Also, not sure if this was mentioned, but the Asiana flight counts against the US, not Korea. Korea as a nation also doesn't get tagged for the 2 shoot-downs over the old USSR. So, the statistics don't actually refer to country of origin but location of crash. And what we're discussing here is pilot training in the country of origin.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: TheRedBaron
Posted 2013-07-10 18:26:06 and read 15529 times.

Quoting DTWPurserBoy (Reply 14):
I look forward to more such articles.

Same here !

Quoting shufflemoomin (Reply 16):
Can I just request that someone please proofread these articles in the future?

It stated that it was unedited as is (sic).

Quoting DTWPurserBoy (Reply 23):
Some seemed to feel that I was singling out an ancient people for criticism which was never my intention.

Same her on part 7 I was even called racist, but I did not respond since I think its low to call someone racist and even lower to answer those claims with flame.

In my view I can give you two incidents I was involved with or had first hand knowledge, to put in perspective as how important is culture and training on these events.

1) Flying Mexicana 722, (in the mid 80´s) on a very stormy night with no visibility and medium (moderate) turbulence I was siting on the Jumpseat, they entered the Mexico city Valley in a pattern to runway 5L, the controller told the crew to lower to 225 knots and go to 10500 feet, the pilot put 225 on the dial and kept the 13500 feet as altitude.... moments assed and they kept going through the checklist, the view outside was none, lots of lightning, bouncing and darkness rain.... so after a minute or so, I opened my mouth and said, "Cappy, I think the controller said 10500 feet and we are still at 13500", he turned back and said firmly " Son, we see nothing, this is bouncing like carzy and this aproach is full of 12500 feet high mountains, the guy down there is not here and I am not flying into a mountain, we will go down when we clear all the obstacles"..... So they did, even the controller after anothe rminute said " Mexicana 305 you are still at 13500, did you copy?"...

2) A friend of mine who worked at AM told me that after 9-11 there was this MD-88 pilot who was really bad at speaking english, he could not speak it very well and understood even worse, so he flew most of the time domestically, then one day he had to Fly to LAX, and to make matters worse the FO was a newbie and did not want to question his "BOSS", so they went to LAX and basically ignored ATC commands and landed on the pattern they though they heard they were given, jets were even scrambled to intercept the MD, they landed, and a huge deal was made of it. The hole ordeal caused a lot of disruption on the traffic and LAX.

The point here is that, as a Mexican I know our culture and when I experienced this events or knew about them, I just nod and think typical macho attitude....

All nationalities have their ways of handling errors, hierarchy, maturity, work, ethics..you name it , in this case 3 trained pilots crashed a 777 in good weather in a simple landing ( no crosswind, traffic, rain etc)... I am not saying all Koreans are bad pilots, but their culture make some aspects of CRM more complicated and can lead to this needless accidents.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: zeke
Posted 2013-07-11 00:29:55 and read 12626 times.

Quoting Klaus (Reply 13):
No, just three. The relief captain was back in the cabin. Only the relief FO was in a cockpit jumpseat as well.

On a long haul flight, it is "normal" for the relief crew to be "burnt out", i.e. be the most fatigued for the approach phase. This is done on purpose to have the operating crew most alert for the approach. Some flights I do the relief crew do not get a rest during the flight. The relief crew are technically out of hours before top of descent, often they go back for a rest after they duty is complete. This is foreign to a lot of people who do not operate long haul flights requiring augmented crew.

You will hear things like DL require all pilots to be on the flight deck, or FAA rules say this, they do not apply here. The rules that apply in this cockpit as those dictated by their regulator, and by their company SOPs. I would not be surprised to learn that the relief FO was not required to be on the flight deck for landing, he chose to do so. On our 777s the seats in the crew bunk are certified for takeoff and landing.

Quoting DTWPurserBoy (Reply 14):

BTW, I found the OpEd piece to be fascinating. It is really great to hear from an insider what goes on behind the scenes at KE and OZ training. Sounds like he had quite a challenge but at the end of the day if you tell your employer that he is doing things wrong, you are putting your job on the line but in the best interests of the passengers and crews it had to be done. Constructive criticism is not always welcome.


Being a check captain at a US major does not automatically translate into being a good instructor. It is possible to be a check captain at a major in the US having never actually taught a student pilot in a small aircraft how to fly a cross wind landing, or even doing the initial jet training for a new hire never flown any turbine aircraft before. Typically airline checks are more about aircraft specific technical knowledge, and company procedures, not basic stick and rudder skills or converting cadets from a 250 hr course into their first jet transition. To be able to TEACH students at this level in a modern complex cockpit is hard work, the trick is to keep things as simple as possible.

Being employed as a simulator instructor for an organisation that is a service provider to an airline means they are paid to perform the duties that service provider has been contracted to do, it is not an opportunity to prove how good a pilot they are and trip students up, it is to either teach the practical application of what is in the FCOMs, or to check against the profile laid down by the airline.

I have seen many expat instructors "fight" against the system they are training in internally as it is not being done the way they did it in their previous airline, and that naturally was the best way. I would wager that airlines in Korea would follow manufacturers procedures to the letter (esp as the manufacturer is doing the training), where airlines in the US offer some latitude to amend the FCOMs to suit their operation and do the training in house.

If his students turned up knowing the FCOMs backwards, his job was easy then, all he needed to do then was to TEACH the practical application of those procedures, that is no easy task.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 15):
Korea has had similar accidents with large airliners, like the one in Guam with the 747 - a perfectly good large airliner where the pilots flew into the ground on approach. I can only think of the American Airlines B757 flight into terrain in Colombia at night as being a similar accident to the Guam KAL accident.

The accidents you refer to in Korea are talking about a long time ago, they last passenger fatality was around 15 years ago. They have changed things a lot, and what yourself and others have failed to recognize the level of investment they have made. Very few carriers have the manufacturers do their pilot training and checking, I know of no carrier in the US that does that.

I would also point out the Guam accident accident also occurred when the ILS was out of service.

Quoting tommytoyz (Reply 15):
The accident RATE needs to be compared, not just the number of accidents, to get a more accurate assessment, IMHO. And even better would be comparing the accident RATE of similar accidents to each.

The rate in Korea is very low, so low that ICAO deemed them the safest in the world.

Quoting aluminumtubing (Reply 17):
There is no comparison, as the air transport industry in the US is many, many times larger than that of Korea.

There is a comparison, and I am afraid ICAO thinks Korea is safer than the USA.

Quoting canoecarrier (Reply 19):
As others have mentioned, that doesn't always mean we do it the right way over here, but it gives the impression that in some parts of the world commercial flying really means managing automation.

Welcome to the real world, flying an airliner if you like it or not today involves applying the correct level of automation for the task at hand. We NEVER turn automation off, NEVER have I heard of a carrier in the US say we will turn the FBW off on a 777 just to see if we can hand fly it with passengers on board. There is always automation there.

Quoting airdfw (Reply 21):

Thanks for the op-ed. I think from the history (KL hiring DL for audit and the fact that it is well known that Korean pilots have problems with contradicting based on seniority) this op-ed is very timely and I appreciate it.

I do not agree, the two pilots up the front were very much equals, both very experienced captains, both with similar levels of experience.

Quoting mandala499 (Reply 24):
Sure it ain't perfect, but it does make me question the merits of the "nightmares" expressed in the article.

No where is perfect, that is why incidents happen everywhere.

Quoting mandala499 (Reply 24):
If you look at http://www.jacdec.de/jacdec_safety_ranking_2012.htm
You'll see airlines who have fast progression, and have narrowbody first officers starting their line flying on those narrowbodies with less than 500 hours total time, and rank higher than the "former airline" of the person writing that Op-Ed article.

Yes, only one US carrier in the top 20, that being jetblue.

Quoting mandala499 (Reply 24):
athay (ranked #3) has freshies flying as relief FO on widebodies, and then flying as full first officers on widebodies... we don't see CX crashing planes more often per revenue seat kilometers there do we?

CX hire people with a lot of different backgrounds, in the past 5 years new hires have come in with anything between 0 and 20,000+ hours (some of the ex-Oasis crew).

Quoting mandala499 (Reply 24):
And that ranking, uses "hull loss accidents and serious incidents in the last 30 years of operations divided by revenue passenger kilometers performed in the same time", taking also into account IOSA audits, USOAP, and also discriminates against more recent accidents... Yet, these so called "younger" airlines using the criticized fast progression, and hiring guys fresh out of flying schools into narrowbody aircraft, are deemed safer...

I think IOSA audits are the best indicator of an airlines real safety standards, like it or not, most carriers in Asia fly in environments which are deemed by IOSA to have far greater risk than what is seen domestically in the USA.

Quoting wjcandee (Reply 25):
Except when he lets the aircraft speed decay more than 20kts below Vref, doesn't halt the unstabilized approach, only realizes that they are low because of the PAPI, and only after that realizes that the autopilot ain't doing what he anticipated. All those hours don't seem to have taught either pilot very much: the PF who obviously didn't have his hand on the throttles (vis Bucharest) and the Training Captain who did no training or at least no monitoring.

What a joke.

When you plant it through inattention, you're subject to criticism. When it seems systemic, it's a valid concern.

All this happened not so long ago on another training trip into AMS with a 737. Three person crew in the cockpit did not notice the speed decay while flying an ILS. Aircraft landed short again.

We saw southwest airlines have three runway excursions in a 5 year period, in those cases if I am not mistaken were attributed to not monitoring the aircraft energy, having too much in those cases.

I do not see the joke in either of them.

Quoting PITrules (Reply 27):
The FAA written exam covers material that is learned on a ROTE basis. Things such as reading aviation weather reports, airspace classifications, weight and balance procedures, regulations, etc.

Of the four levels of learning (rote, understanding, application, correlation), the 'rote' level in an FAA curriculum pretty much ends at the written exam, and the other levels of learning are incorporated with the actual flight training (yes, even at ALL ATPs).

What the article as referring to was student knowing the FCOMs etc by rote, which is what is required in every airline before the practical application of that knowledge in the simulator. Before the simulator sessions start, all pilots are required to pass a written exam on the aircraft limits, systems, and procedures. This is just recalling rote knowledge.

To repeat myself, ALL airlines require this of new pilots, it not something that is unique to Korea.

Quoting PITrules (Reply 27):
The entire training seems to end at the basic rote level without incorporating the higher levels of learning. That is the heart of the matter.

No, his job as a simulator instructor is to TEACH the student the practical application of the theory. If the students could learn this by reading a book, he would not have had a job, and we could do without simulators.

Seems to me he was expecting the students to turn up knowing how to fly the aircraft based upon what they read in the FCOM. That would be like expecting medical students know how to do a procedure after only ever reading a textbook.

Quoting PITrules (Reply 27):
I don't see what point is trying to be made?.

The point is he is making out that the system in Korea is somewhat corrupt or cheating is involved, and I have given clear examples to which you agree occurs in the US of the exact same thing. Pilots passing on tips to each other occours everywhere, we learn from others mistakes.

At the end of the day, each individual pilot needs to pass a skills test. If pilot fails a test, normally what happens is they are retrained back to standard, and then retested. His observation that pilots he failed are back on the line is what I would expect if they have been retrained and retested.

What he does not mention is that pass AND fail results go to the regulator, and a pilot cannot be back on the line unless they have passed. The fact that some pilots are failing, and then seen back online in my view is a sign of a healthy training and checking system. It means they have been retrained and passed a subsequent test. The regulator keeps an eye on this.

He does not also mention that the regulator makes spot inspections of the training and checking in the simulator, and that simulator instructors also have to pass their checks. No one in the system goes without being checked.

Quoting PITrules (Reply 27):
Furthermore, it is astounding that highly experienced check airman have been fired for failing trainees that he deems should not pass, or for not passing a certain quota

I have seen countless number of expats come to Asia and not have their contracts renewed, when you dig deep there is a lot more to it. I know of people not getting renewed because they misappropriated company property, falling asleep during simulator training, smelling of alcohol when being the instructor, calling in sick too often, abusing housing or travel allowances, personality conflicts, failing their own checks, failing to adhere to the specific profile etc.

Quoting aviateur (Reply 29):

Some of these observations are very intriguing, but it's also true that Korea spent a great deal of time and money overhauling its entire civil aviation system after that spate of accidents in the 1980s and 1990s

That is very true. The terrain and weather in Korea can be very unforgiving, for example doing a circling approach into 18R into Busan is not easy at all, usually with a strong tailwind on base. It is bread and butter for these pilots.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=srB3J8DRpnc

What is not in the animation is the hill on base that an Air China 767 hit doing the approach which prevents a normal straight in approach.

Quoting aviateur (Reply 29):
There's a pretty big disconnect between such a lofty honor and some of the things people are saying. So I'm not certain who or what to believe

I think your article is fairly accurate, it is up to the NTSB to determine what actually happened. In any case, audits performed by international organisations show the airlines in Korea as being as safe, or safer than a lot of western airlines.

Quoting Arabear (Reply 34):
In addition to echoing the idea that these figures should be equivalized in some way (e.g., per 1MM take-offs and landings), the US also has a much larger GA sector that accounts for many of the accidents, if I'm not mistaken.

Fact remains that in the past 10 years, the only incidents in that involve Korean carriers worldwide were a couple of tailstrikes and a hull loss on a freighter due to a cargo fire.

US carriers in the same period have had more accidents, and if the system is so much better, and the pilots so much better, the accident rates should be zero. We never saw this level of criticism leveled at US carriers when similar poor judgement was displayed, examples would be the MD11 crash in Narita, or the 3 runway excursions Southwest had in 5 years, where the probable cause in all three related to crew judgement.

This industry is very unforgiving for any one event, those pontificating that their system is better in my view should not be throwing stones in a glass house. The next accident is just around the corner.

Quoting Arabear (Reply 34):
Also, not sure if this was mentioned, but the Asiana flight counts against the US, not Korea. Korea as a nation also doesn't get tagged for the 2 shoot-downs over the old USSR. So, the statistics don't actually refer to country of origin but location of crash. And what we're discussing here is pilot training in the country of origin.

It is not really fair to say we will include some parts of the industry, and exclude others, that is ignoring events to fit an agenda.

I think the NTSB will find the airport and the FAA to have contributed to this. The statement by ALPA the other day was rather critical that an airport such as SFO could offer approaches without any electronic glide path. Some countries like Australia, where ATC are not allowed to offer VFR approaches to foreign carriers, if the ILS is out, another approach is offered, normally an RNAV. The capacity is reduced, not safety. Local carriers are still given visuals. DXB is planning on some runway works, the way to mitigate the risk is to already tell carriers that they will have to reduce flight frequency.

Quoting TheRedBaron (Reply 35):

I appreciate the perception that CRM is non existent in Korea, I would just like to point out that a cockpit is not a democracy, the captain is the person in charge. We are not talking about a very senior Captain and a very young FO, we are looking at two very experienced Captains. I do not think the traditional cockpit gradient was there, the two Captains were pretty much equals.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: mandala499
Posted 2013-07-11 00:38:53 and read 12502 times.

Quoting PITrules (Reply 27):
there should be no place for political correctness in a crash investigation. The issues the O-P brings up will be studied by the investigation, and rightfully so.

Correct, there shouldn't be any place for political correctness. However, when the so called "cultural issues" alleged don't show up or don't get covered as much as one likes to see, would then someone accuse the investigators of complicity? We've seen it done to a certain extent in past investigations.

Quoting PITrules (Reply 27):
Airlines with mostly long haul networks will have fewer takeoffs and landings. I would like to see a ranking of accidents related to takeoffs & landings.

I recall seeing one of those in the list mentioned, which hires newbies into the right seat of shiny 180 seater jets, in a country reportedly with a lot of "cultural issues", has a lower incident rate per 10,000 departures than United, unfortunately I don't have it with me so take what I say with less than a grain of salt...   

Quoting wjcandee (Reply 31):
The right seat, unlike any Training Captain at any American carrier that I am aware of, is so disconnected from what the guy is doing that he is supposed to be riding the ass of that he doesn't notice the rapid deterioration of the airspeed (and quite possibly that A/T is not engaged),

So I guess we were wrong when we fired an American training captain a couple of years back for doing exactly just that (no crash though)? Or would he simply be dismissed as "oh you must have hired an outcast."

In another case, an American captain (training captain) and F/O from flying schedules (basically asked them to leave) for flying dangerously in mountainous area (after getting lost), by trying to do a slam dunk approach. This was reported by an off duty captain deadheading in the observer seat... I guess he was an outcast too, or the local who reported it got it wrong? Sorry, to say that "unlike any Training Captain at any American carrier", is a total joke... if it's "unlike many..." then I'd agree.

So I guess those who ex OZ expats who informed me a different (opposite) picture to what the Op-Ed article writer wrote, are incorrect too then?

Quoting TheRedBaron (Reply 35):
All nationalities have their ways of handling errors, hierarchy, maturity, work, ethics..you name it , in this case 3 trained pilots crashed a 777 in good weather in a simple landing ( no crosswind, traffic, rain etc)...

I think this is obvious to many. What's interesting in this case is that the discussion of culture seems to have been on steep authority curve, which in my eyes seems a bit funny as the guy they're not too far off from each other in terms of age and experience. There is no doubt the training captain took his eyes off the ball. There is no doubt

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: Aaron747
Posted 2013-07-11 03:32:24 and read 11300 times.

Quoting zeke (Reply 36):
No where is perfect, that is why incidents happen everywhere.

Hear, hear   

Quoting zeke (Reply 36):
US carriers in the same period have had more accidents, and if the system is so much better, and the pilots so much better, the accident rates should be zero. We never saw this level of criticism leveled at US carriers when similar poor judgement was displayed, examples would be the MD11 crash in Narita, or the 3 runway excursions Southwest had in 5 years, where the probable cause in all three related to crew judgement.

This industry is very unforgiving for any one event, those pontificating that their system is better in my view should not be throwing stones in a glass house. The next accident is just around the corner.

Could NOT agree more. As an American living abroad, it is this kind of holier-than-thou attitude that I find both self-defeating and grating. The purpose of an investigation is to determine why something happened. If those elements that are uncovered are actionable, the next step is to make practical recommendations the operator or possibly entire industry can benefit from.

Stone-throwing and chest-thumping nationalism have no place in this venue, period. Human factors apply to all. In the US, look no further than the aforementioned runway excursions, checklist lapses that resulted in takeoff accidents with no survivors, and attempts to land with thunderstorms on the field while pushing the limits of the duty time clock. Aviators are a brotherhood, and a lot of comments so far about the OZ crew have smeared that notion.

Quoting mandala499 (Reply 37):
There is no doubt the training captain took his eyes off the ball. There is no doubt

Agreed. And the sole focus should be why, and what contributing factors may have led to that outcome. Not pedantic commentary about airmanship within national borders.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: tharanga
Posted 2013-07-11 04:12:59 and read 10919 times.

Quoting aviateur (Reply 29):

There's a pretty big disconnect between such a lofty honor and some of the things people are saying. So I'm not certain who or what to believe.

I agree. There are two contradictory narratives here. There are probably elements of truth to both stories - that Korean aviation safety is much improved over 20 years ago, and that there are gaps in airmanship. What will be complicated is seeing how these interact, and what the full story really is.

Quoting wjcandee (Reply 31):
I don't think it's hard to know who to believe.

I don't think that's fair - that response is based on a sample size of one. We aren't going to paint american aviation by the brush of the Colgan incident, are we? (though some tried to do so for the regionals).

that's why the op/ed here is important - it lays out information that there are systemic weaknesses in a way that is worse than elsewhere. But it's still one person's observations, not carefully collected statistics.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: AirPacific747
Posted 2013-07-11 06:22:46 and read 9656 times.

I often hear from friends in the industry and on the internet that South Korea is a bad place to go as an expat FO because of the culture in the cockpit. I've been told it's only worth it to go there as an expat captain. Something is wrong with the way they communicate and teach.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: zeke
Posted 2013-07-11 06:29:08 and read 9595 times.

Quoting AirPacific747 (Reply 40):

The main reason not to go to Korea as an FO is that you will never get promoted. That is very common in most contract jobs. The major players in China, Taiwan, Korea, and Japan that hire expat contract pilots demand very high medical, flying, and SOP adherence.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: AirPacific747
Posted 2013-07-11 06:37:35 and read 9456 times.

Quoting zeke (Reply 41):

Yes, that is another reason. Personally I would like to try it out but I am not sure if I should after what I am being told.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: Aaron747
Posted 2013-07-11 06:41:01 and read 9398 times.

Quoting AirPacific747 (Reply 40):
Something is wrong with the way they communicate and teach.

That's a pretty strong statement. Everyone sees things through their own cultural filter, of course, but that doesn't mean the 'right' way is an absolute. I certainly have frustrations as a manager in a Japanese firm, but I have a conciliatory attitude that allows me to get ideas across the American way without stepping on people's toes. In some situations one culture's way is beneficial, and in others, another way is better. People talk about this stuff like it's black and white, and it ain't.

Quoting zeke (Reply 41):
The major players in China, Taiwan, Korea, and Japan that hire expat contract pilots demand very high medical, flying, and SOP adherence.

As well they should - they have learned from experience that some who come for those jobs don't intend to try very hard to keep them. It's their country, either way.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: wjcandee
Posted 2013-07-11 07:01:44 and read 9152 times.

Quoting tharanga (Reply 39):
don't think that's fair - that response is based on a sample size of one. We aren't going to paint american aviation by the brush of the Colgan incident, are we? (though some tried to do so for the regionals).

One aairline's maintenance once got the biggest fine for a single violation in the history of the FAA -- based on one incident.

Why? Because it was apparent from the incident that there was a systemic problem.

Short story, from memory: Said airline was very interested in being on-time. Instituted programs to improve that. So far, so good. FAA supervisor is standing on ground at hub with maintenance supervisor. Supervisor tells FAA supervisor proudly about how he got that (pointing) jumbo jet off the gate on time. He did so by using a spring on the elevator transducer from a nearby store because he didn't have any from the manufacturer, which he knew was identical to the spring supplied by the manufacturer. He said this proudly. Of course the rule is that if it doesn't have the right tag, it doesn't go on the airframe. FAA grounds the aircraft immediately.

The FAA then fined the crap out of the airline because the big problem wasn't that the guy did it, it was that he didn't think it was wrong. That's a systemic problem.

Sometimes, a single incident can tell you a lot.

I think the single incident here, where you have two randomly-paired guys, with a zillion hours, displaying hideous airmanship. The more we learn, including the fact that these guys were making a lot of autopilot inputs in the last minute or so, says a lot -- like that they are afraid to hand fly.

This at least strongly suggests systemic issues. Good news is that I am confident that the NTSB will identify what they are. And the traffic that is rebooking on other airlines right now will convince these companies that they need to fix this problem once and for all.

[Edited 2013-07-11 07:36:01]

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: SeJoWa
Posted 2013-07-11 07:09:05 and read 9105 times.

Quoting zeke (Reply 3):
There have been a lot more fatal accidents in the USA than South Korea, the generalizations in the article about poor skills are not reflected in the accident statistics.

http://aviation-safety.net/database/country/country.php?id=N

United States of America
Capital:Washington DC
Continent:North America
Fatal accidents in United States of America:1344
Accidents fatalities in United States of America:14212

http://aviation-safety.net/database/country/country.php?id=HL

South Korea
Capital:Seoul
Continent:Asia
Fatal accidents in South Korea:24
Accidents fatalities in South Korea:532

I am compelled to take issue with this flinging about of data with intent to deceive,
although I don't understand how any but the most deluded person would fall for it.

But I can do that too!

AIRPORTS - WITH PAVED RUNWAYS

Source: https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/fields/2030.html

United States total: 5,194
over 3,047 m: 189
2,438 to 3,047 m: 235
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1,479
914 to 1,523 m: 2,316
under 914 m: 975 (2010)

Korea, South total: 71
over 3,047 m: 4
2,438 to 3,047 m: 20
1,524 to 2,437 m: 12
914 to 1,523 m: 13
under 914 m: 22 (2012)


The idea here is not to hop up and down in righteousness, but simply point out the fact that a discussion's potential to be constructive needs more than a unilateral attack mode.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: DTWPurserBoy
Posted 2013-07-11 07:50:21 and read 8937 times.

Quoting MCOflyer (Reply 22):
I would imagine that the instructors would try to change it up to prevent this.

A great concept and relatively easy to do for written tests. Many colleges do this now--create a data base on each subject with a large number of questions. Each student sits down at a computer and it randomly selects 25 or 50 or however many questions you want. No two students get the same test so it cannot be compromised unless someone went to a lot of effort.

A check ride is a check ride and can be largely subjective. Word tends to get out about so-and-so and what are his/her pet peeves. Not much that you can do about that.

Looking back I can laugh at the days that within 2-3 days of starting the new recurrent training cycle, copies of the written exam were being circulated on the line.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: Flighty
Posted 2013-07-11 08:18:17 and read 8852 times.

Quoting wjcandee (Reply 26):
Otherwise, you are putting your thumb on the scale in favor of carriers with significant long haul routes and calling them "safer". They aren't.

  
On the order of 10+ times more dangerous AFAIK, per departure.

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 38):
Stone-throwing and chest-thumping nationalism have no place in this venue, period. Human factors apply to all. In the US, look no further than the aforementioned runway excursions, checklist lapses that resulted in takeoff accidents with no survivors

The OP was actually there & is gave a professional opinion of what he encountered. Maybe the tone becomes objectionable. Countries have their own philosophy and so do pilots.

But philosophy goes to professionalism and reducing the rate of fatal crashes. That's a science discussion. He could (should) have left the cultural references out. The US rate of mainline crashes due to pilot errors is very low, knock on wood. On the order of 1 per 30-50 million departures. There is something there.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: silentbob
Posted 2013-07-11 08:20:09 and read 8838 times.

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 43):
That's a pretty strong statement. Everyone sees things through their own cultural filter, of course, but that doesn't mean the 'right' way is an absolute. I certainly have frustrations as a manager in a Japanese firm, but I have a conciliatory attitude that allows me to get ideas across the American way without stepping on people's toes. In some situations one culture's way is beneficial, and in others, another way is better. People talk about this stuff like it's black and white, and it ain't.

If the captain is about to crash the aircraft, you should not have to be worried about "stepping on toes". Being excessively deferential is not an acceptable culture when lives are on the line.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: PITrules
Posted 2013-07-11 08:29:02 and read 8788 times.

Quoting zeke (Reply 36):

What the article as referring to was student knowing the FCOMs etc by rote, which is what is required in every airline before the practical application of that knowledge in the simulator.

I think what the article was referring to is that knowing the FCOM by rote, without the ability to apply that knowledge, is all what some or even many students know - not only at the start of training but throughout the simulator portion and beyond.

Quoting zeke (Reply 36):
No, his job as a simulator instructor is to TEACH the student the practical application of the theory. If the students could learn this by reading a book, he would not have had a job, and we could do without simulators.

Seems to me he was expecting the students to turn up knowing how to fly the aircraft based upon what they read in the FCOM.

I interpreted it as he expected students to turn up knowing how to fly "an" aircraft (stick and rudder, basic decision making skills, etc). It's not an unrealistic expectation at that stage. His point was students were having trouble taking that rote material and applying it to the understanding, application, and correlation levels, which is needed when a wrench is thrown in the works such as what we've seen at SFO.

You said it yourself, students should have the basics by this point....

Quoting zeke (Reply 36):
Typically airline checks are more about aircraft specific technical knowledge, and company procedures, not basic stick and rudder skills or converting cadets from a 250 hr course into their first jet transition.

If they don't, they should at least have the ability to learn beyond the rote level.

[Edited 2013-07-11 08:50:06]

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: DTW2HYD
Posted 2013-07-11 09:28:14 and read 8638 times.

It is nice narrative of a personal experience. We don't know instructor's state of mind, probably he is not happy with his job. A good pilot doesn't mean a good instructor, not every professional has skill or patience to be a successful instructor.

What about cases where an expert expat captain ignored local co-pilot's request and caused 158 fatalities.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Air_India_Express_Flight_812

[Edited 2013-07-11 10:20:10]

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: canoecarrier
Posted 2013-07-11 12:10:13 and read 8303 times.

Quoting zeke (Reply 36):
Welcome to the real world, flying an airliner if you like it or not today involves applying the correct level of automation for the task at hand. We NEVER turn automation off, NEVER have I heard of a carrier in the US say we will turn the FBW off on a 777 just to see if we can hand fly it with passengers on board. There is always automation there.

Perhaps I wasn't clear. My point was that several people have discussed that flight training overall is much different in other parts of the world then it is here in the States. Home grown pilots here get more stick and rudder time as instructors or charter pilots than they do in other parts of the world. I never meant to insinuate that automation isn't used by everyone, it's obvious that it is for many reasons including safety.

That doesn't mean other countries don't produce good pilots, but maybe the suggestion that commercial pilots be required to hand fly an approach once a month should be considered.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: eksath
Posted 2013-07-11 18:24:07 and read 7513 times.

Quoting eksath (Thread starter):
We welcome feedback and review. It will probably be a dogfight but that is what an Op-Ed piece does. It also is to promote exchange of ideas and to be thought provoking.

There has been a great deal of thought provoking discussion and exchange of ideas on this thread. I think it has been a great start for the series and probably better than expected. Thanks to all who participated! We hope to build on this start!

Our purpose is not to sensationalize or provide "detrimental" information. As we mentioned from the start, we encourage contrasting points of view and will continue publish opinion pieces that are in the best interests of our readership and aviation/aerospace. In this particular case, we were respectful of the wishes of the writer to remove the material at this juncture. As we indicated before, this material has been available online at other corners of the web prior to our posting and most likely remain afterwards. It will probably circulate in its email form for awhile.


We encourage any reader who wishes to post an Op Ed piece to contact us.

[Edited 2013-07-11 18:27:33]

[Edited 2013-07-11 18:28:10]

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: RayChuang
Posted 2013-07-12 05:22:39 and read 6432 times.

In the end, it all comes down to this: cockpit resource management (CRM).

The worse disaster in aviation history--the collision between two 747's on the island of Tenerife--was a classic case of where the inability of the other flight crew members to counteract the actions of the captain hugely contributed to the accident. Airlines around the world should have heeded the warning from the report on that accident and trained the flight crew so the other flight crew members could counter the actions of the captain if the captain appears to have guided the plane into a dangerous situation. If airlines in Asia had heeded that warning, a large number of accidents in eastern Asia might actually have been avoided, in my humble opinion!

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: Klaus
Posted 2013-07-12 05:44:34 and read 6376 times.

Quoting zeke (Reply 36):
Quoting Klaus (Reply 13):
No, just three. The relief captain was back in the cabin. Only the relief FO was in a cockpit jumpseat as well.

On a long haul flight, it is "normal" for the relief crew to be "burnt out", i.e. be the most fatigued for the approach phase. This is done on purpose to have the operating crew most alert for the approach. Some flights I do the relief crew do not get a rest during the flight. The relief crew are technically out of hours before top of descent, often they go back for a rest after they duty is complete. This is foreign to a lot of people who do not operate long haul flights requiring augmented crew.

I wasn't implying any judgment above – the NTSB had just provided that (preliminary) information.

If it took more than three pilots in the cockpit to manage a safe approach and landing, you'd have to shut down all commercial aviation anyway.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: Aaron747
Posted 2013-07-12 06:42:40 and read 6248 times.

Quoting RayChuang (Reply 57):
Airlines around the world should have heeded the warning from the report on that accident and trained the flight crew so the other flight crew members could counter the actions of the captain if the captain appears to have guided the plane into a dangerous situation.

How many 707s did Pan Am have to wreck before it became obvious they had a cockpit culture that let a few too many idiot Captains muck things up?

Humans are fallible. This happened time and again, it gets discussed, and still the issue comes up later.

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: canoecarrier
Posted 2013-07-12 10:54:12 and read 5863 times.

Quoting eksath (Reply 52):
Our purpose is not to sensationalize or provide "detrimental" information. As we mentioned from the start, we encourage contrasting points of view and will continue publish opinion pieces that are in the best interests of our readership and aviation/aerospace. In this particular case, we were respectful of the wishes of the writer to remove the material at this juncture. As we indicated before, this material has been available online at other corners of the web prior to our posting and most likely remain afterwards. It will probably circulate in its email form for awhile.

I'm a little confused about this. Maybe the mods can open a thread in the Site Related forum to better explain what just happened here. I can't think of anytime in the going on 10 years I've been on a-net that the site bowed to a request from a commercial aircraft manufacturer and deleted parts of a thread. There may be valid reasons, but it seems completely out of the ordinary and a more complete explanation somewhere less frequented like SR might be the place to do that?

Topic: RE: Op-Ed: "My Flight Training Experience In Korea"
Username: eksath
Posted 2013-07-12 11:10:09 and read 5850 times.

Quoting canoecarrier (Reply 56):
I'm a little confused about this. Maybe the mods can open a thread in the Site Related forum to better explain what just happened here. I can't think of anytime in the going on 10 years I've been on a-net that the site bowed to a request from a commercial aircraft manufacturer and deleted parts of a thread. There may be valid reasons, but it seems completely out of the ordinary and a more complete explanation somewhere less frequented like SR might be the place to do that?

There is no conspiracy here or bowing. If the writer wants to it off, it is off. Simple as that. It was requested by the writer and it was removed. Nothing beyond that.

[Edited 2013-07-12 11:11:41]


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