Sponsor Message:
Aviation Technical / Operations Forum
My Starred Topics | Profile | New Topic | Forum Index | Help | Search 
UPS/FedEx Flight Engineers  
User currently offlineDFWJIM From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 39 posts, RR: 0
Posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 8781 times:

I have a question about the flight engineer positions on UPS' DC-8s and 727s and Fedex 727s. In a previous thread about Fedex 737s, someone mentioned that the Fedex flight engineers are not professional flight engineers but pilots who will eventually be promoted to first officers. I assume that flight engineers for UPS are in the same position.

Do the flight engineers for these two airlines take turns with the first officers in actually taking off, flying and landing the aircraft? If not how do they keep their flying skills current besides time in the simulator?

6 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlineB747Skipper From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 8702 times:

Many F/Es with UPS and FedEx are not pilots. I do not know how their number compares to the F/Es that are actually pilots and waiting for an opening as first officer, by seniority as their company rules are.
Maintaining pilot proficiency when you are a F/E is rather difficult. The F/E is not legally permitted to occupy a pilot seat for takeoff, cruise or landing, if he is not qualified and current as such. A pilot trading seats with a F/E would have to meet same requirements to occupy the F/E station...
In the old days, airlines provided simulator practice for pilots who wanted to maintain proficiency, but cost saving measures have all but stopped that liberal attitude.
I have seen and heard extreme cases of pilots with some airlines, who were F/E for many years having completely lost their proficiency as pilot. For many it was their own fault. They continued to bid by choice a F/E position to bigger - better paying airplanes - rather than bidding a first officer position in more junior airplanes. Some pilots who were F/E for sometimes 10 or 15 years, were basically unable to be retrained to proficiency. They then did continue as F/E until the end of their careers. Regrettable.
Happy contrails  Smile
(s) Skipper

User currently offlineSWAbubba From United States of America, joined Mar 2002, 154 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 8690 times:

They don't keep their flying skills current, unless they do it outside of the airline on their own. When they become first officers they get enough time in the sim to brush up on their flying skills.

When I started at WN I hadn't flown in 1.5 years (thanks to 9/11). It only took a couple sims to get back into the swing of things.

User currently offlineFDXmech From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 3251 posts, RR: 30
Reply 3, posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 8641 times:

Fedex (and others) do not have F/E's, rather S/O's (Second Officers).

You're only as good as your last departure.
User currently offlineNightFlyer From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 95 posts, RR: 3
Reply 4, posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 8617 times:

FDXmech is correct, all the engineer's at FedEx are pilots. Some of them are over 60 guys that were former captains or first officers. As an S.O. it's up to you to maintain your currency if you choose. I was on the panel for two years before I upgraded to the right seat and I flew a little bit in a Cessna 152 for fun. Flying is like riding a bike so unless you are out of it for a really long time then it comes back to you pretty quick.


User currently offlineAmerican 767 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 4639 posts, RR: 12
Reply 5, posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 8488 times:

There are F/E's at Fed Ex and UPS who are not pilots, but they have been flying the line for many years as flight engineers. When they joined the airlines they didn't have to have pilot ratings, they just needed the Professional Flight Engineer FAA license, but that is no longer true of course.
Now all F/E's are S/O's, they have to take the F/E written exam to be considered for an interview but they need to have at least Commercial, IFR, Multi, and CFI ratings, and like in every airline there is a minimum number of flight hours a pilot applicant must have. You can't apply today at Fed Ex or UPS if you just want to fly as flight engineer all your life, all young flight engineers are pilots. They fly as S/O and two years after their date of hire they can move to the first officer's seat when there is a vacancy.

Two years ago when American was retirering the last 727's, there were still professional F/E's flying on those, they were over 60 and they had up to 40 years of experience in various aircraft types including the Electra, DC-6, B707, B747 and DC-10.
There was once in Airways an article about flying the IL-86, which requires besides the two pilots a flight engineer and a navigator. The F/E had been flying in the engineer's station all his life in several russian models and the DC-10. If I remember well what I read in the article, that's the rule in Russia contrary to what it is today in the United States. When you start as F/E you do that all your life.

B747Skipper, happy contrails to you too.  Smile

Ben Soriano

Ben Soriano
User currently offlineFoxHunter From United States of America, joined Dec 2001, 84 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 8488 times:

There is actually one guy that is currently a FDX FE, former Seaboard then Tigers that has never had a pilot license.

Top Of Page
Forum Index

Reply To This Topic UPS/FedEx Flight Engineers
No username? Sign up now!

Forgot Password? Be reminded.
Remember me on this computer (uses cookies)
  • Tech/Ops related posts only!
  • Not Tech/Ops related? Use the other forums
  • No adverts of any kind. This includes web pages.
  • No hostile language or criticizing of others.
  • Do not post copyright protected material.
  • Use relevant and describing topics.
  • Check if your post already been discussed.
  • Check your spelling!
Add Images Add SmiliesPosting Help

Please check your spelling (press "Check Spelling" above)

Similar topics:More similar topics...
UPS/Fedex Question posted Thu Oct 5 2006 04:15:07 by AirWillie6475
Flight Engineers, How Important Are They posted Fri Dec 23 2005 19:30:50 by Aileron11
Why 2 Flight Engineers? posted Sat Oct 22 2005 00:33:03 by Wrighbrothers
Are Flight Engineers "real" Pilots? posted Thu Apr 21 2005 19:21:12 by PADSpot
Flight Engineers posted Thu Mar 31 2005 02:56:09 by Jonty
Kudos For Flight Engineers posted Fri Jan 14 2005 20:10:45 by Duke
Flight Engineers On Piston Planes posted Sun Jul 18 2004 20:47:23 by EconoBoy
Flight Engineers posted Sun Mar 18 2001 22:31:11 by A/c train
Flight Engineers posted Mon Feb 12 2001 22:27:40 by LY744
FedEx Flight Sked? posted Mon Jan 1 2001 21:30:07 by NikonF100

Sponsor Message:
Printer friendly format