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Yet Another "great" Piece Of Aviation Journalism  
User currently offlineFLY2HMO From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (5 years 2 months 3 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 7361 times:

So apparently pilots talking about random stuff in the cockpit are dangerous and a hazard to pax safety  Yeah sure

http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2009-10-01-pilot-speak_N.htm

I love how they mention the Colgan Buffalo crash. I read the transcript myself. Yes they were talking, but once they were established on the approach they were pretty much all business by then.

I'm gonna go on a limb here and say the sterile cockpit rule is violated on 90% of all flights.

Sounds like another slow news day to me...

18 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineForce13 From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 229 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (5 years 2 months 3 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 7325 times:

I have to agree USA Today is pushing it a little.

But then again why not? It's not like USA Today is reputable journalism anyway.



Do not taunt. Do not shake. Do not pander. Add coffee. Subject should be slightly human within an hour.
User currently offlineUAL747DEN From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 2392 posts, RR: 11
Reply 2, posted (5 years 2 months 3 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 7178 times:



Quoting FLY2HMO (Thread starter):
So apparently pilots talking about random stuff in the cockpit are dangerous and a hazard to pax safety Yeah sure

It is very dangerous and it violates the law. Below 10,000 feet there is to be only flight related communication in the cockpit. The FAA and NTSB has found that this has contributed to at least six crashes and that to me is a VERY big deal.

Quoting FLY2HMO (Thread starter):
I'm gonna go on a limb here and say the sterile cockpit rule is violated on 90% of all flights.

Apparently that limb broke and you hit your head because you are completely wrong. Most pilots follow the FAR's and respect the law. This is not a suggestion or recommendation, it is a demand and it is the law. If pilots are found to be violating this law they can be fired and lose their license. Being able to talk about useless crap for a few minuets is really not worth all that to most professional pilots.



/// UNITED AIRLINES
User currently offlineAcey559 From United States of America, joined Jan 2007, 1544 posts, RR: 2
Reply 3, posted (5 years 2 months 3 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 7122 times:

I was just thinking about this the other day. I was watching an airline DVD and in every one of them that I own the pilot is talking to the cameraman throughout taxi. Technically this is illegal and it is blatantly obviously since it is 'caught on tape'. Of course, they get all of their required items done and perform checklists, etc. Once they are cleared for takeoff they are all business until cruise, but while taxiing they are chatting away. I don't have a problem with it because I've gotten used to multitasking while flying. Granted, I limit my conversation but I still talk to passengers and I know Part 91 rules are different than 121 and 135, but I don't see a huge problem with it as others may.

User currently offlineThegreatRDU From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 2311 posts, RR: 4
Reply 4, posted (5 years 2 months 3 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 7048 times:



Quoting Force13 (Reply 1):

But then again why not? It's not like USA Today is reputable journalism anyway.

Agreed, bunch of sensationalists....this happens in every cockpit



Our Returning Champion
User currently offline413X3 From United States of America, joined Jul 2008, 1983 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (5 years 2 months 3 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 6991 times:

I don't see anything sensationalist in here, the reporter is stating facts that the FAA and NTSB found in crashes. Whether it happens often or not, it is still against the FARs right?

User currently offlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21864 posts, RR: 55
Reply 6, posted (5 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 6856 times:



Quoting FLY2HMO (Thread starter):
So apparently pilots talking about random stuff in the cockpit are dangerous and a hazard to pax safety

It's not necessarily dangerous (though it can be), but it is evidence of a willingness to disregard established regulations and SOPs (signifying a lack of professionalism), and that is definitely something to be concerned about.

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently offlineUAL747DEN From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 2392 posts, RR: 11
Reply 7, posted (5 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 6848 times:

I will also add that airlines will not tolerate this or any rule violation. It appears that the FAA is going to start to crack down on this and you can be sure airlines will do the same. Pilots breaking FAR's open airlines up to all kinds of liability and that just will not be tolerated.


/// UNITED AIRLINES
User currently offlineTharanga From United States of America, joined Apr 2009, 1867 posts, RR: 1
Reply 8, posted (5 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 6806 times:



Quoting 413X3 (Reply 5):
I don't see anything sensationalist in here, the reporter is stating facts that the FAA and NTSB found in crashes. Whether it happens often or not, it is still against the FARs right?

I agree. There's a knee-jerk defensiveness around here, that any media report that isn't glowingly positive about the industry is being 'sensationalist'. Are they accurately describing what the FAA and NTSB found? Maybe some people don't think sterile cockpit is important, and that cockpit chit-chat did not contribute to those incidents in any way, but in that case, your complaint is not with USA Today.


User currently offlineNorCal From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 2459 posts, RR: 5
Reply 9, posted (5 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 6718 times:



Quoting UAL747DEN (Reply 2):
It is very dangerous and it violates the law. Below 10,000 feet there is to be only flight related communication in the cockpit. The FAA and NTSB has found that this has contributed to at least six crashes and that to me is a VERY big deal.

Sully broke sterile cockpit.....

The NTSB has found that sterile cockpit violations have contributed to but not caused six crashes. What about all the other crashes? They have also found that lack or improper training and fatigue have contributed to crashes too. Reworking of the rest rules would be much better for safety than conducting a witch hunt for sterile cockpit violations.

While violations of sterile cockpit shouldn't happen, USA Today is barking up the wrong tree if they want to improve airline safety. Better investigations would include such things as managment pushing pilots to fly fatigued and sick, outdated rest rules, improper or minimum training, and poor pay.


User currently offlineLoggat From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 666 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (5 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 6569 times:



Quoting UAL747DEN (Reply 2):
Apparently that limb broke and you hit your head because you are completely wrong.

Yep, he is wrong, It's closer to 99%. In my experience, the flights that are less likely to have sterile cockpit broken are the ones towards the end of a duty period when both pilots are tiring and have already used up all the normal conversation starters. IMO, a tired pilot is more a danger than one who is alert and makes a quick one-liner.

I think that sterile cockpit is a fantastic concept, but when it gets enforced in such a judicial and punitive fashion, it detracts from the underlying target of safe operation.



There are 3 types of people in this world, those that can count, and those that can't.
User currently offlineFlyingfox27 From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2007, 424 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (5 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 6150 times:

Its a bit like my boss said the other day to me, its ok to have a little bit of banter as long as its safe and the work is all done properly and on time. I wouldnt like workers to just work and no play that would be awful.

So yes its a slow news day for that paper.


User currently offlineFaro From Egypt, joined Aug 2007, 1613 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (5 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 4860 times:

Sterile cockpit cannot be and is not observed mechanically as if people were robots. Talkative pilots will tend to break it once in a while, the less chatty guys will perhaps not break it or break it much less often. You want zero tolerance sterile cockpit, you replace them pilots with computers...

Faro



The chalice not my son
User currently offline7673mech From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 744 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (5 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 9 hours ago) and read 4801 times:
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Quoting FLY2HMO (Thread starter):
I'm gonna go on a limb here and say the sterile cockpit rule is violated on 90% of all flights.

Maybe you do ... but as a vet of a lot of maintenance test flights and jump seating I can tell you most professionals don't violate the sterile cockpit rule. At least not with the two carriers I have been associated with.


[Edited 2009-10-02 05:35:12]

[Edited 2009-10-02 05:36:15]

User currently offlineAndrewUber From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 2528 posts, RR: 40
Reply 14, posted (5 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 3785 times:

Good CRM is knowing when you can have a conversation in the cockpit, and knowing when to FTFA. When I'm in the flight deck - it's all business - and it always is with every other pilot I've flown with.

This is media sensationalism at it's best. I'm surprised they didn't mention the aircraft type of the Buffalo crash, a "Boeing A320 Super Jumbo".  sarcastic 



I'd rather shoot BAD_MOTIVE
User currently offlineKukkudrill From Malta, joined Dec 2004, 1123 posts, RR: 4
Reply 15, posted (5 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 3683 times:

Looking at this with an outsider's point of view, I see it as quite reasonable. The critical bit is this:

Quote:
No flight crewmember may engage in, nor may any pilot in command permit, any activity during a critical phase of flight which could distract any flight crewmember from the performance of his or her duties or which could interfere in any way with the proper conduct of those duties.

The rest of 121.542(b) is simply an illustration:

Quote:
Activities such as eating meals, engaging in nonessential conversations within the cockpit and nonessential communications between the cabin and cockpit crews, and reading publications not related to the proper conduct of the flight are not required for the safe operation of the aircraft.

As I read this, it's ok to make a quick remark so long as the pilots keep their attention on the job. The rule is only actually broken if the pilots get distracted. It's actually quite cleverly worded.



Make the most of the available light ... a lesson of photography that applies to life
User currently offlineBlueFlyer From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 4179 posts, RR: 2
Reply 16, posted (5 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days ago) and read 2510 times:
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I got to ride the jumpseat quite a bit before 9/11 (a lot less nowadays, less need, more paperwork) and my overall conclusion would be that the sterile cockpit rule is, like most rules, applied as needed by professionals who happen to know what they're doing (just like good drivers know when it is and isn't safe to speed). I quickly developed a simple rule: if they talk, I can talk, if they don't, I keep quie. Over the times I eventually figured out how to read body languages and I could tell when it would be ok to... ignore the rule but I always let the guys with the hands on the controls make the call.

A pilot actually shared with me his belief that it was very much akin to speed limit regulations in as much as few cops would issue a ticket for someone going 5 miles over the speed limit in a clear day on a straight road with no traffic, but a big deal would be made of the same 5 miles over the speed limit if the driver had caused or failed to avoid an avoidable accident.

[Edited 2009-10-02 15:27:29]


I've got $h*t to do
User currently offlineNIKV69 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (5 years 2 months 2 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 2139 times:



Quoting FLY2HMO (Thread starter):
I love how they mention the Colgan Buffalo crash. I read the transcript myself. Yes they were talking, but once they were established on the approach they were pretty much all business by then.

Yea which is why they never saw the ice building up before all that and by the time they decided to get to business it was too late and now they are all dead. Yea it's a dumb rule alright.  sarcastic 

Quoting Force13 (Reply 1):
But then again why not? It's not like USA Today is reputable journalism anyway.

I guess you could say that about any publication that writes something negative against the airline industry huh?


User currently offlineBarney Captain From United States of America, joined Nov 2001, 998 posts, RR: 12
Reply 18, posted (5 years 2 months 2 weeks 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 1941 times:



Quoting NIKV69 (Reply 17):
Yea which is why they never saw the ice building up before all that and by the time they decided to get to business it was too late and now they are all dead. Yea it's a dumb rule alright.

Really?

From the NTSB;


"The de-icing system was turned on 11 minutes into the flight by the crew, who discussed significant ice buildup on the aircraft's wings and windscreen shortly before the crash."

"On March 25, 2009, NTSB investigators said that icing probably did not contribute greatly to the accident."

Not only did they "see the ice building up", they had discussed it and had activated the deice equipment shortly after take-off.

I don't believe for a second that extraneous conversation contributed in any meaningful way to this horrible accident. Notice I wrote in any meaningful way because ultimately everything contributed to it - hence the end result. I suspect far more of a factor was fatigue and crew training.

As previously posted, Sully violated the reg in the same way that these two did. Does that make him unprofessional and unsafe?



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