Sun Dec 06, 1998 8:57 pm

There is alot of talk here in NY the last two days in the pilot community because of the latest "near" miss.
Seems that a NWA airliner cruising over albany, ny
received a TCAS warning from an aircraft that had just taken off from albany. What did the crew do?
They pulled what we call a "pop up" in response to the TCAS warning: climb climb climb.........
During his "pop up", he never realized that an Air Ontario
turbo-prop was above. They came within 100ft vertically and 1 mile laterally. Now one mile may sound like enough seperation but at jet speeds, one mile can close very rapidly.
My point being, TCAS is a great innovation but it must be used correctly. ATC MUST be informed of any maneuver you make in response to a TCAS warning.
I cant tell you how many times we have received false TCAS warnings.
If every crew acted on what TCAS advised, there would be havoc in the skies. TCAS is needed and it will save lives but it must be used correctly.
I can tell you that the crew will now be evaluated, and
their actions will be evaluated by a chief pilot at NWA.
I wouldnt be surprised to hear that they received an official warning or reprimand.


Sun Dec 06, 1998 9:02 pm

By the way, a "pop up" is a blind climb.
Its very dangerous and should only be used in a dire
Posts: 2145
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 8:02 am


Mon Dec 07, 1998 12:56 am

My knowledge of TCAS is limited, but if crews take the time to contact ATC before taking evasive action, couldn't that take too long? I thought you only got a TCAS alert if a collision was imminant, and you had to take action without delay. How long would it take to contact ATC and get clearance? I realize there may be other traffic around, but doesn't TCAS take this into consideration when it gives a command? I hope aviator_ua can answer my questions. To a cockpit crew member, these questions may sound dumb, but I am just an enthusiast who depends on people in the know to improve my aviation knowledge. I appreciate any information you can give me.
Fly Eastern's Golden Falcon DC-7B


Mon Dec 07, 1998 1:23 am

Are we talking about a Traffic Advisory or a Resolution Advisory here ? If it's the former then the crew indeed should have acted differently, since this is of advisory nature only. If however it was a Resolution Advisory (which is a command) the crew acted correctly, provided they did what the TCAS told them to do, eg climb, descent etc. I am under the impression as well that TCAS does take in acount all the proximate traffic and then comes up with a 'resolution' that clears all conflict. I agree that you should tell ATC, but after you have initiated the maneuvre.


Mon Dec 07, 1998 8:44 am

I agree cool cat but let me read from the bible of IFR, the AIM.......
TCAS 1 provides the pilot proximity warning only
no avoidance maneuvers should be taken as a result of a TCAS 1 warning

Tcas II provides advisories and resolution advisories,
any aviodance maneuvers taken in response to a TCAS II warning shall be in the climb and decend planes only.
now here is the killer:
My point being, I agree with all of you. Who the heck has the time to grab the mike when you are climbing for your life?
As pilots we live by the rule: never drop the plane to pick up the mike. FLY THE PLANE
Unfortunately, these rules were not written by pilots.
They were written by bureaucrats. lol



Mon Dec 07, 1998 8:51 am

The only thing that troubles me though Cool CattIIIc
is that had the climbing NWA plane colided with the commuter, tomorrow morning the entire pilot community would be saying: well, what do you want?
they never contacted ATC........
After all, there are 2 pilots. One should have flown the maneuver and one should have jumped on the radio.
Its a tough argument. Good points can be made for both sides.

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