artsyman
Posts: 4516
Joined: Wed Feb 28, 2001 12:35 pm

No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Tue Jun 18, 2002 4:46 pm

This was on aol this morning, basically an air traffic controller is saying that pilots from one of the no frills carriers are ignoring routing and levels in a bid to land on time.
I have enclosed a few excerps and the link

http://www.ananova.com/business/story/sm_609765.html

BUDGET AIRLINES 'RISKING PASSENGERS' LIVES'

PILOTS from at least one budget airline are being accused of putting passengers' lives at risk.

They are accused of ignoring orders from air traffic controllers as they bid to meet tight deadlines.

They are also accused of ignoring longer flight paths set up to cut down on noise disturbance and instead taking shorter routes over nearby houses.

The air traffic controller says pilots are cutting corners because they are working under "extreme pressure on the flight deck to achieve programmed sector times", the newspaper said.

The controller complains of "overly aggressive responses" from pilots, who frequently challenge the order in which jets take off and land.

He commented: "It is occurring with increasing frequency and, in my judgment, is due in part to the aggressively commercial ethos that exists within some airline companies."
 
David_itl
Posts: 5961
Joined: Wed Jun 27, 2001 7:39 am

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Tue Jun 18, 2002 6:01 pm

In this follow-up story three of the no frills airlines have made these comments:

'A spokeswoman for Ryanair said: "We operate to the highest standards of international safety and like all airlines we are regulated by the aviation authorities."

A spokeswoman for KLM's budget airline Buzz said: "All our pilots are KLM-trained. I am very surprised by this allegation."

Officials at Go says safety is "non-negotiable". The airline would launch an immediate investigation if any pilot disregarded air control instructions.'

Where is the statement from easyJet?

David
 
Guest

An Ideal Time For Employment?

Tue Jun 18, 2002 6:02 pm

Just wait till the ATC is privatised then you will have Chaos, ATC Making pilots fly longer routes so ATC can increase their capacity and the pilots ignoring them. And who says the skies are getting safer
 
Kirstey
Posts: 102
Joined: Fri Nov 16, 2001 8:56 pm

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Tue Jun 18, 2002 6:13 pm

Nice one Kaddy!

Of course ATC is already privatised and now owned by the airlines!! and unlike us pilots ATCOs aren't concerned about company profits etc etc. Their jobs are more secure therefore they are concerned with doing the jobs safely and to the best of their ability!

 
Guest

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Tue Jun 18, 2002 6:15 pm

I'd be careful with what you read; from what I understand of a friend who works at West Drayton, this accusation should be addressed to ALL airlines, not just the no-frills operators.

Just as an example, one airline whose pilots consistently question ATC instructions is a full-service carrier based in mainland Europe.

Every airline has its morons; as far as I have seen, from sitting on the jumpseat for landing/takeoff with previous flights with Ryanair, the communications have been pleasant and even jolly!

Regards
 
Guest

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Tue Jun 18, 2002 6:16 pm

Sorry, should have added that the guy above has since retired....

Cheers
 
Guest

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Tue Jun 18, 2002 6:46 pm

Plenty of video reports on this story on bbc.co.uk/news

As I understand from David Learmount, the problem is not so much that budget airlines have actually contravened any safety regulations, but that their pilots are alleged to have become very aggressive and snappy with controllers, questioning the need for speed restrictions, altitudes, headings, go arounds etc.

Incidentally, the fact that Easyjet have not yet offocially replied to these raised concerns does not in my opinion prove anything either way.

Let's hope that if true, this problem gets resolved, whatever the airline or airlines involved.

Cheers!

 
Kirstey
Posts: 102
Joined: Fri Nov 16, 2001 8:56 pm

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Tue Jun 18, 2002 6:51 pm

Easyjet having nothing to answer for. The Times suggests that a certain irish no-frill airline is responsible. The accusations is not just that they are getting aggressive, but that they are ignoring speed restrictions during their approach, which has lead to a few go-arounds as they lose seperation with the plane in front.

Aviation related journalism stinks at the best of times, but as I've said before, walkarounds, slow taxying etc etc are not part of the Ryan Training policy!
 
Guest

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Tue Jun 18, 2002 7:10 pm

Kirstey,

With all respect, I think it unfair that you single out Ryanair for criticism of its training policies. Do you fly for Ryanair? How can you make such a statement knowingly? (especially with the abbreviation 'etc.' and all that it implies...)

As for taxying...I've flown with Ryanair more than 12 times now, as well as having watched their a/c movements on the ground (along with those of other airlines) at Stansted. They don't taxy any faster/slower than other airlines; and that's having flown with many other airlines too.

As for walkarounds, as I don't have the required knowledge/experience, I can't comment other than to say that that is indeed true that at least on one of my jumpseat flights with them, no walkaround inspection was made. However, I don't know what the possibilities/legalities are in this area, so I'm not necessarily going to draw a bad conclusion from this.

Regards
 
Kirstey
Posts: 102
Joined: Fri Nov 16, 2001 8:56 pm

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Tue Jun 18, 2002 7:19 pm

I don't fly for ryanair, I fly for BA. And I was not intending to single them out. I only named them because I know from my 2nd hand experience from ATCOs (married to one) that they draw their share of critisim. There is no legal requirement to perform an A check (full walkaround) apart from the 1st first flight of the day. however it is standard practice to at least kick the tyres before each flight. Ultimatly the p1 has a legal responsibility for his PAX and not the airline (well of course the airline is financially responsible).

Safety reports have been filed by ATCOs relating to their speed on the ground and much more importantly their speed in the air.

Anyway, wasn't just intended as a Ryanair bash so apologies.

Suggest you freecall PPRUNE for a more informed debate on Ryanair than I can give you.
 
SInGAPORE_AIR
Posts: 11619
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Tue Jun 18, 2002 7:28 pm

Well I think it's quite shocking... but it seems untrue because of my feelings  Laugh out loud

EasyJet plc, has actually responded live on BBC NEWS 24 and the head of Corporate Affairs was actually sounding quite angry that the presenter kept implying that Easyjet is one of the airlines involved. He said blah blah safety blah. When asked if EZY would launch an enquiry, the man said that EZY is not involved in this and if so, then the pilots would be disciplined.

I personally think the story has been blown all out of proportion because of some speculation. Firstly, the airline is anonymous. Seconldy, there is no evidence of this really. Thirdly, it could have been anyone putting this report in. But we'll see.
Anyone can fly, only the best Soar.
 
VC-10
Posts: 3546
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Tue Jun 18, 2002 7:32 pm

This story is about 2 month old and this is the source (http://www.chirp.co.uk/):-

Inappropriate Interpersonal Relations

A human factors problem that I believe to be on the increase is a growing tendency observed primarily, with some of the ‘low cost’ airline operators, of flight crew reacting inappropriately to air traffic control clearances and instructions received.

These inappropriate reactions, perhaps more accurately described as inappropriate ‘behaviour’, usually take the form of overly-aggressive responses to what are perceived by flight crew as either unnecessary or unhelpful air traffic control instructions or clearances that are believed to inhibit the planned operation of the flight. Only on rare occasions do such reactions constitute a legitimate questioning of a clearance or instruction on the grounds of flight safety, something of which I would not only understand, but would entirely support on the basis of it being a valuable flight deck/ATC CRM/TRM interactive process.

Examples which have occurred recently include:

• Questioning on the R/T of the chosen traffic approach sequencing combined with an accusation that the aircraft in question was positioned ‘number two’ in the sequence because the crew were not UK nationals

• Failure to comply with assigned intermediate and final approach speeds prior to reaching 4 nm from touchdown (no adverse weather or unusual operating circumstances), resulting in a go-around by the aircraft involved

• Accusation that the Localiser Sensitive Area (LSA) was infringed during a Cat. 3 landing because of the observed position of the previous landed aircraft being allegedly within the LSA and a refusal by the flight crew involved to accept the explanation given, which confirmed that the LSA was not infringed and that the previous landed aircraft was holding in an approved position

• Frequent querying of the push-and-start order chosen by Ground Movement Control (usually, on the basis of Central Flow Management Unit-allocated Take Off times) and an aggressive attitude on the R/T when given the explanation by GMC, even when the tactical situation involves only aircraft of the same company.

• Accusation that the IRVR values passed by ATC during periods of shallow fog, are “dangerously inaccurate” (notwithstanding that the IRVR system is fully calibrated and flight checked, thereby meeting all CAA operating criteria)

• Failing to fully comply with arrival noise abatement procedures combined with a dismissive response when the error is (as required) drawn to the attention of the flight crews involved.

I would not wish to give the impression that anarchy has broken out or that this problem is occurring more often than not; at the present time, it remains the exception rather than the rule. However, it is occurring with increasing frequency and in my judgment, is due in part to the aggressively commercial ethos that exists within some airline companies and which probably translates into extreme pressure on the flight deck to achieve programmed sector flight times. In consequence, flight crew frustration with anything that interferes with their ability to maintain the schedule, clearly, will occur; this frustration will manifest itself in different ways depending on the flight crew involved.



And before this get's deleted for copyright violation :-

Reproduction of FEEDBACK

CHIRP® reports are published as a contribution to safety in the aviation industry. Extracts may be published without specific permission, providing that the source is duly acknowledged.

 
Skymonster
Posts: 3428
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2001 7:53 pm

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Tue Jun 18, 2002 7:35 pm

Having in the past worked in the airline industry for eleven years and during that period made hundreds and hundreds of flights, many on the flight deck, I am well aware that both flight crews and airline ops departments sometimes push the boundaries in order to achieve what the travelling public want - a reliable, on time air service.

The types of things that I have seen done, both on the ground and in the air, are too numerous to mention. The sort of things mentioned in todays reports may be more prevalent now, but are certainly nothing new.

However, there is a world of difference between "using the system" to your own advantage, and not operating safely. In my experience, using the system stops well before safety is compromised.

Andy
There are old pilots and there are bold pilots, but there are no old bold pilots
 
erasmus
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Kirstey?

Tue Jun 18, 2002 7:36 pm

Kirstey,

Could you please post or email me the links to this particular discussion about Ryanair on PPRUNE.
Thanks.

Regards,
Erasmus
 
SInGAPORE_AIR
Posts: 11619
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Tue Jun 18, 2002 7:42 pm

Another thing, why is it just the UK that is implicated? Do the pilots not do this in €urope if it is true?

Buzz: No press release

Easyjet: EZY pilots adhere to the very highest standards of training and monitoring - reflected in unblemished safety record to date. Passengers to be reassured. Low cost airlines make money by turnover times on the ground and Easyjets spend the same amount of time in the air as BAW planes. For the week ending 16 June, 81% of flights were on time and 98% of flights arrived within 1 hour.

Ryanair: No press release.

Go: No press release.
Anyone can fly, only the best Soar.
 
voodoo
Posts: 1959
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Tue Jun 18, 2002 7:44 pm

Isn't this old news? Even if the allegations were true, the noise made on PPRUNE a few months ago should have put an end to any risky practice.
Emphasis on `should'.
` Yeaah! Baade 152! Trabi of the Sky! '
 
Kirstey
Posts: 102
Joined: Fri Nov 16, 2001 8:56 pm

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Tue Jun 18, 2002 8:20 pm

http://www.pprune.org/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=56852 is the most recent (today). I suggest a search on Ryanair will give you a better picture of the last year (including Ryanair flight deck crew responses)

enjoy
 
Guest

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Tue Jun 18, 2002 9:31 pm

No worries Kirstey, I just don't like seeing 1 airline being bullied all the time-especially if the criticism is based on rumours and not facts!

I hope to join you one day on the FD, who knows which airline though!

Regarding pprune, take care everyone, because not everything written on those boards is necessarily true; take into account sour grapes, agendas, whinge-factor, jealousy and simply outright provocation!

I don't claim to be an expert in aviation, I'm only 20, but you don't have to be a genius to work out what is probably true and what most likely isn't.

In any case, pprune proves to be a good laugh on most occasions!  Big thumbs up

Regards
 
airblue
Posts: 1785
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Tue Jun 18, 2002 11:26 pm

It's really hard to believe FR (or any other low-cost carriers) risks its passengers lives to save few minutes ingnoring ATC.
They save and try to cut everything, but not the safety of their passengers.
The Valujet story was a school for every LCC managers.
Especially for FR that it's still flying some 20 years old B737/200.
The impact on the public opinion for a disaster could destroy also a so profitable and established airline like Ryanair:
 
VC-10
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Joined: Tue Oct 26, 1999 11:34 am

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Wed Jun 19, 2002 1:47 am

Singapore_Air,

If you read my earlier post you will note no particular nationality is implicated, it is just the press guilding the lily for a more sensationalist story
 
artsyman
Posts: 4516
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Wed Jun 19, 2002 2:44 am

I am posting this to two threads as it is relevent.

While I have to admit before I post this that I am favouring BA over the no frills, I find (for right or for wrong) that they offer a better service, and in recent times offer better fares in many cases than the no frills.

I think it is interesting that today the slur against the no frills safety comes out on the same day that BA announced fares that are going to severely challenge the no frills....coincedence ? ...you decide

Jeremy
 
Arsenal@LHR
Posts: 7510
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Wed Jun 19, 2002 2:52 am

Funny that Easyjet is the one being singled out, anyone hear EZY chairman Stelio's comments regarding Ryanair's safety?

Arsenal@LHR
In Arsene we trust!!
 
BlueShamu330s
Posts: 2565
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Wed Jun 19, 2002 3:27 am

Singapore_Air's QUOTE: I personally think the story has been blown all out of proportion because of some speculation. Firstly, the airline is anonymous. Seconldy, there is no evidence of this really. Thirdly, it could have been anyone putting this report in. But we'll see.

Hmm, well, being an ATPL and married to an ATCO, I can say quite categorically that comment is rubbish and it shows clearly that comments made by people not in the trade are as dangerous as some of the comments one finds in the gutter press.

1. The story has not been blown out of proportion at all.
2. There is plenty of evidence. Chirp's evidence and contributors' identities are kept completely confidential for obvious reasons. If there was no fact behind the report, Chirp would not have published it. That is FACT.
3. Commercial pilots, ATCOs and aircraft Engineers ONLY are allowed to submit Chirp reports. It is not open to "anyone putting a report in."

People who lack professional knowledge should not use forums like this to promulgate their own ill-informed opinions whilst making them sound like fact. Such comment is dangerous and does the industry no favours whatsoever.  Pissed

Shamu

So I drive a 4x4. So what?! Tax the a$$ off me for it...oh, you already have... :-(
 
SInGAPORE_AIR
Posts: 11619
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Wed Jun 19, 2002 6:00 am

Well I think it has been blown out of all proportion. It even made headline news at one point. I think before some people take it for actual fact, it surprises me that nothing has been noted in mainland €urope.

Your point number 3 'Shamu' is misintepreted as my implication was that any ATC person or pilot etc.. could have put that in, it doesn't mean that it's totally true. My mistake though.

Your last comment is quite condescending and I advise caution on such language in the future.
Anyone can fly, only the best Soar.
 
SInGAPORE_AIR
Posts: 11619
Joined: Mon Nov 13, 2000 4:06 am

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Wed Jun 19, 2002 6:09 am

Go has now issued a press release like merger-partner EasyJet.

----
Go pilots fly to the highest standards - 18 June

With regard to reports in the media, Go would like to reassure all passengers that our pilots fly to the highest standards.

Safety is non-negotiable. Flights are monitored by an onboard flight data recording system to check that aircraft are flown within the strict parameters laid down by Go and Boeing.

If there was ever a suggestion that flight crew had disregarded air traffic control instructions we would launch an investigation immediately.
----

Go website
Anyone can fly, only the best Soar.
 
BlueShamu330s
Posts: 2565
Joined: Sun Sep 23, 2001 3:11 am

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Wed Jun 19, 2002 9:23 pm

Condescending ??

I'm loathe to respond to the post of a juvenile who's comments really are occassionally condescending and startlingly patronising against anyone who dares to disagree or correct his misinformed opinions.

However, I'm not going to have my informed comments rebuked by someone who is clearly ill-informed.

As such, I stand by my previous post and its factual content, be it condescending or otherwise.

Your own comments were not based on any fact, and I advise caution on such speculation in the future.
So I drive a 4x4. So what?! Tax the a$$ off me for it...oh, you already have... :-(
 
Skymonster
Posts: 3428
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2001 7:53 pm

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Wed Jun 19, 2002 11:19 pm

The story has not been blown out of proportion at all

Indeed blueshamu330s... much as I said earlier.

However, having worked for a certain airline for nine years and had many many flight deck trips in that time, as well has having spent more hours in their ops room than most, I think that there's been as much trouble in your back yard as anywhere else in the past. Please note I'm not singling you out, but the full service airlines pointing the finger at the low cost carriers is a bit like the pot calling the kettle black if my REAL WORLD experience is anything to go by.

Andy
There are old pilots and there are bold pilots, but there are no old bold pilots
 
BlueShamu330s
Posts: 2565
Joined: Sun Sep 23, 2001 3:11 am

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 12:35 am

Andy

Couldn't agree more with you !

However, I'm not sure it's fair to say that the full cost carriers per se are pointing the finger; infact, I think they've all been deafeningly silent with their views.

I will be the first to admit that sometimes the system has been used to expedite or facilitate a short cut or save time, such as a "Direct to XXX would keep us clear of the worst weather." We've all done it.

However, there is a difference between the occassional instance and the perceived repeated attempts by other carriers to always get the short cut or high speed descent.

I'm not going to name and shame, but there is one operator operating into a north west airport who's crew repeatedly report visual with the field, always ask for high speed, always ask for non-standard circuits, and constantly report "approaching flightlevel....", which not only surely aggravates ATC but also clogs up the RT for ATC and other aircraft.

I can think of one particular instance, but please allow for my oldtimers disease if it's not 100% word for word:
Pilot: xxx approaching FL200 towards Rexam, visual with the filed.
ATC; roger, descend FL 170, speed 270kts.
Pilot: FL170, we need high speed if we're going to get a left base for 27.
ATC: negative, standard right hand pattern due traffic, speed 270kts.
Pilot: ok, but we're visual
ATC: and you're also number 3
Pilot: Where's the traffic?
ATC: Ahead of you!
Pilot: Approaching FL 170 for lower
ATC: Are you TCAS equipped ?
Pilot: Affirm
ATC: Well, you'd better snag it 'cos it hasn't seen the Beluga into Hawarden, 1,000 ft below you !
Pilot: So is it his fault we're going the long way ?
ATC: Partly, plus you're number 3 to land at Liverpool.
Pilot: Can't he go down quicker ? We're high now.
ATC What's your speed ?
Pilot: 310 reducing
ATC: The speed restriction was to stream you behind the Beluga. Turn left 20 degrees, radar heading, speed now 250, descent when I have 5 miles.
Pilot: Left 20? You do know our destination's Liverpool ?
ATC: Affirm

And so it went on. We laughed at the time, because it was clear the pilot was getting more and more wound up over the fact he wasn't going to get his direct route.

What this example and the Chirp report should make us ask is whether this "pushy pushy can we" ethos is down to individual characters on the flightdeck or whether it stems from a company's ops. department, especially one which often pastes its ontime performance against its rivals efforts on huge advertising billboards.

The fact is that low cost operators need their airplanes in the air for more hours per day than full service carriers. Whilst the paying public continue to expect something for nothing, that pressure will always be there.

I'm glad Chirp had the courage to print the report, and after the media frenzy and speculation has calmed down, I hope some good might come out of it.

Regards

Shamu
So I drive a 4x4. So what?! Tax the a$$ off me for it...oh, you already have... :-(
 
Kirstey
Posts: 102
Joined: Fri Nov 16, 2001 8:56 pm

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 1:27 am

Shamu ,

The report wasn't about pilots being pushy. Nothing wrong with that at all, we all ask for what we can! However, this report is concerned with pilots ignoring cleared speeds not bartering for them.

I've only flown in to liverpool a couple of times - Diversions from MAN. I take it your dialog was from some time ago. The visual circuit is nearly always left hand at Liverpool, and the somewhat convoluted ILS/DME/NDB proceedure onto 27 means that IFR traffic is generally kept below the transition altitude (5,000ft??) from a long way out to stop conflict with outbounds from Manchester climbing into the Manchester TMA from 26L/R.

Although the quality of RTF in your dialog stands up to Liverpool standards!

 
BlueShamu330s
Posts: 2565
Joined: Sun Sep 23, 2001 3:11 am

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 2:04 am

Hi Kirstey

Since MAN introduced runway 2 and its new SIDS, left base for IFR inbounds is now a non-standard and rare procedure.
MAN outbounds to the south carry out a tortuous (try it at max weight and on speed !) detour around Knutsford, thus coming into conflivtion with anything on left base for 27 at LPL unless at 2500ft or below.

IFR inbounds are all now tailored to a MIRSI arrival (until new procedures come into effect this autumn), including through Rexam and WHI. Unless holding, traffic is now vectored to pass to the west of the field (normally 010 off Rexam or 310 off WHI), dropping to 3500 QNH for a downwind right hand pattern.

Reading the report again, I do think the general gist is that some of us are pushing it too far. Of course we all try to get whatever we can by way of direct routes etc. However, and I agree with the contributor to Chirp, procedures are there for a reason, not just to inconvenience and delay us.

Regards

Shamu
So I drive a 4x4. So what?! Tax the a$$ off me for it...oh, you already have... :-(
 
Emile
Posts: 194
Joined: Mon Nov 27, 2000 10:42 pm

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 2:48 am

ITS THE BABY bmi????????????
 
donder10
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Joined: Sun Oct 21, 2001 5:29 am

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 2:51 am

LOL Shamu,
EZY are usually good when on 127.95, going into Luton so it must be a Northern thing  Big thumbs up
 
BlueShamu330s
Posts: 2565
Joined: Sun Sep 23, 2001 3:11 am

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 3:23 am

 Wow!

Donder, who said it was EZY ???? ROFL  Big thumbs up  Big thumbs up  Big thumbs up  Big thumbs up

Damn, I must be more careful in future  Big grin

I can empathise with them a little bit though, as going "over the top" for an approach is more of a norm on the continent and more the exception in the UK.

Having said that, it's rare in the UK to have traffic orientation similar to the MAN (24L/R) and LPL (27), just 22 miles between the 06 FAF and 27 FAF with the addition of what can best be described as a radar monitored uncontrolled free lane for VFRs slap bang inbetween (can't think of a better way to describe it !!).

It's a mess at the best of times, but when LPL suffer on-shore winds and MAN is on westerlies, then it becomes a nightmare.....climbers head on to each other.

But that's another thread altogether !!!!!!

Regards

Shamu

ps Kirstey, were you on SHT3G today ??
So I drive a 4x4. So what?! Tax the a$$ off me for it...oh, you already have... :-(
 
David_itl
Posts: 5961
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 3:33 am


"But that's another thread"

(With apologies to Airplane)

David
 
donder10
Posts: 6944
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 5:03 am

I didnt even see the ''I'm not going to name and shame, but there is one operator operating into a north west airport who's crew repeatedly report visual with the field, always ask for high speed, always ask for non-standard circuits, and constantly report "approaching flightlevel....", which not only surely aggravates ATC but also clogs up the RT for ATC and other aircraft.''c  Big grin
Emile,bmi baby arent low cost  Big thumbs up!


 
prebennorholm
Posts: 6419
Joined: Tue Mar 21, 2000 6:25 am

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 6:42 am

When rules are not obeyed to, then there is a discipline system to deal with it. Not in general terms, not even mentioning a specific flight, much less the airline. It makes it all very strange. Why does ATC controllers go to the press instead of using the discipline system?

What does the British CAA tell about this? When they have issued an official bulletin, then let us relate to that. Until then, it can all just as well be pure B***S***.

It is no secret that the mainline airlines don't like competition from the no frills. Could it be some mainline airline company which paid an ATC controller to "leak" such information to a hungry press in order to give a cheap shot at their competitors? We will most likely never know. Such things happen in almost every sort of business, why should airlines be much better? Hopefully most airlines are better than that, but it is too romantic to assume that ALL of them are.

A few years ago a new hair shampoo was introduced here and became quite successful. Until a competing shampoo company "leaked" to the press that if you washed your hair with the new shampoo, then your hair would fall off. Independent laboratory tests showed much too late that it was all BS. But then the new shampoo had almost disappeared from the super market shelves, and not much later the brand had to be withdrawn from the market.

Such things happen.

Let us trust the British CAA and their reports. And nothing else.
Always keep your number of landings equal to your number of take-offs
 
David_itl
Posts: 5961
Joined: Wed Jun 27, 2001 7:39 am

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 6:50 am

Don't ask me why the lines below appeared in this story which is about the ATC strikes. What's the standard working pattern for a pilot - two days on/three days off?

"A pilot sacked by ******* is claiming he was put under extreme pressure and unfairly dismissed by the no frills carrier after he made a procedural error because he was exhausted after flying for five consecutive days."

Find out for yourself which airline is named!

David

 
Rick767
Posts: 2613
Joined: Sun Jan 30, 2000 8:11 pm

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 6:56 am

Prebennorholm,

"Why does ATC controllers go to the press instead of using the discipline system?"

The air traffic controller who made this report did so through the Confidential Human Incidents Reporting Programme (CHIRP). He/she did not go to the press. The programme is designed for Pilots, Air Traffic Controllers, Engineers, etc... to voice their concerns over safety issued which have arisen during their operation, whilst remaining anonymous.

The report made in this case was published in the April 2002 "Feedback" issue of the CHIRP organisation, available free for all to view (including the press). You may download a copy yourself if you wish, from http://www.chirp.co.uk

The final comment of the group written at the bottom of this report was:

"As the reporter notes, the problems are infrequent. Raising awareness at this early stage might be helpful in reversing the trend. A copy of this report has been forwarded to the CAA Safety Regulation Group"

In my view the only thing the publicity of this report has done is discourage me from filing such reports myself in the future with the fear of mass media coverage. I have seen much worse things published in these reports in my time, not least a flight crew falling asleep on a transatlantic flight, only to be awoken by the Mach Warning bell, and a 737 approaching a UK airfield without either pilot or autopilot in control due to a misunderstanding between the crew. Never saw those in the papers.
I used to love the smell of Jet-A in the morning...
 
BlueShamu330s
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 6:58 am

Prebennorholm

I think you misunderstand the purpose of Chirp. It is not 'The Press.' It is a confidential (ie identity is protected) way for Commercial Pilots, ATCOs and engineers in the UK to report incidents, occurrences and factors which may not be suitable for an official report or which may be of use to other people in the industry.
The process now is that the report is sent to operators, airport managers and ATC units for them to digest and respond to.
I would be bold enough to say it would be impossible for a major carrier to bribe an ATCO to submit such a report, as Chirp investigates all reports before deciding whether to pulish it or not.
Chirp is a hugely respected organisation, respected not least by all the airlines, NATS and the CAA.
I doubt they would be rash enough to publish a report without good grounds and evidence at the risk of tarnishing their impartial and respected position.

Shamu
So I drive a 4x4. So what?! Tax the a$$ off me for it...oh, you already have... :-(
 
BlueShamu330s
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 7:03 am

LOL, we're typing at the same time !!!!

Do you have a slot ??  Big thumbs up
So I drive a 4x4. So what?! Tax the a$$ off me for it...oh, you already have... :-(
 
Rick767
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 7:16 am

Do we ever?!  Smile/happy/getting dizzy

Is it ORD or IAH 2moro?
I used to love the smell of Jet-A in the morning...
 
Skymonster
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 7:46 am

BlueShamu330s,

Sorry to return to this a bit late, but yes you're right of course in that the full fares are not those really pointing the finger. All I was trying to say was that some of the sort of sharp practices referred to in the press and that we know go on are not confined to the budgets. Loved your dialog and I can assure you - been there, seen that (or at least similar). I'll freely admit that what the low-cost syndrome might have done is increase the number of occasions when such "incidents" occur. Of course, as I said in my first input to this topic, nothing I was involved in or was aware of arguably ever really compromised safety (very couched terms there, eh?).

The reports in the papers mentioned a number of concerns, including sometimes heated "negotiations" with controllers (which we all know happens and you already highlighted with your dialog), and ignoring instructions. But like I think you inferred with your dialog, there's "ignoring" and "ignoring" - how long does it take to bleed off speed, eh? So when does "using the system" become ignoring instructions? Yes, when you don't make the speed by a specified waypoint, but otherwise???


I think that most pilots (certainly most of the ones I know) want to do right by their company, and if that means "using the system" on the odd occasion then they do that whether company ops specifically ask or not. What of course becomes a concern is when company ops (or rules) start requiring pilots to do that as an everyday matter of course to keep a continually stretched program running - yes it happens occasionally, but regularly...? What's of even more concern is when pilots feel pressured to "use the system" in order to keep their jobs. However, and finally, I don't think I know of any who would seriously compromise the safety of their command, their passengers or themselves in order to keep their jobs.

Andy
There are old pilots and there are bold pilots, but there are no old bold pilots
 
prebennorholm
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 7:59 am

Thanks a lot to Rick767 and BlueShamu330s for telling us foreign laymen about the CHRIP and how it works. The report has of course also been copied here in the Danish press, and I can guarantee that far more than 99% of the Danish readers (and British readers too) do not have the educated view on this sort of reports as you do - and have enlightened all of us with.

Certainly the message delivered by the press was: Buzz, Easy, Ryan and GO are unsafe, period. That's quite natural when the report is British and mentions only the phrase "Budget Airlines".

But what are budget airlines? I live in Copenhagen. If I go to London for instance, then my real "budget airlines" are SAS and BA who are competing with round trips at well below 100 dollars including taxes these days.

I agree especially with Rick767 when he writes: "In my view the only thing the publicity of this report has done is discourage me from filing such reports myself in the future with the fear of mass media coverage."

When such reports cannot be kept "inside", then the otherwise great CHRIP system has to a large degree failed its mission.

Let the press deal with documented facts alone. Otherwise the great CHRIP system has no chance to work properly as the add on "safety vent" which otherwise might be a great tool to monitor, optimise and improve airline and ATC procedures.
Always keep your number of landings equal to your number of take-offs
 
Skymonster
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 8:13 am

In my view the only thing the publicity of this report has done is discourage me from filing such reports myself in the future with the fear of mass media coverage.

Rick767,

Why? As has already been highlighted, CHIRP is in the public domain, at least in terms of its results. If CHIRP exposes things that are of genuine safety concern why should the media and the wider public not be made aware of them?

If you are put off from using the system in future, then the system has failed. The problem is not related to the system, or to the people using it, but more to how the media deals with its output. With respect, it is not your fault for using the system, but rather it is the fault of those running the system that they do not adequately manage the media's interpretation of its results.

Andy
There are old pilots and there are bold pilots, but there are no old bold pilots
 
Rick767
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 8:23 am

Prebennorholm,

I agree with you. I truly hope that the CHIRP reports will not now simply become a source of "news" for the tabloid press. It is a really important safety organisation. Whilst I have never used it and obviously hope to never have to, it is the assurance that there is a place I can go to report any safety-related issues which I feel it would be beneficial to share with flight crew across the counrty, whilst maintaining my anonymity.

I would also hope that other aircrew, ATCOs, etc would take the same stance and this gives us all the opportunity to learn from others mistakes / errors / bad luck. That is the name of this game.

I question whether this controller would have made this report if he/she could have predicted these international publicity conseuqences.

The fact of this matter is quite simple, the airlines in question are perfectly safe. Some pilots are putting undue pressure on air traffic controllers, which this controller thinks is due to tight turnaround / scheduling requirements. I do not disupute this. We have all done it, we have all asked for ATC to help us out and given less than thankful replies when they can't accommodate us. I would frown upon pilots continously making such demands of ATC.

But the fact of the matter is this, safety is not in question here. The only safety issue is that aircraft are ignoring approach speed limitations requested by ATC on approach and that only serves to disadvantage the operating aircraft by causing a go-around.

Let CHIRP do it's work, I say, but giving millions misleading headlines about air safety is really not the way.
I used to love the smell of Jet-A in the morning...
 
Rick767
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 8:31 am

"but rather it is the fault of those running the system that they do not adequately manage the media's interpretation of its results"

Do you really think the media are influenced by what these organisations tell them? Take the G-MONX A320 "Most jinxed jet in Britain" story. What a load of cr*p it was, which the CAA Safety Regulation Group and Monarch Airlines seriously recommended was not published as it was misleading, inaccurate and plain false. Did that stop the Sunday Times?

Never let a little white lie get in the way of a good story, that's the media's opinion.

I agree that these reports should be continued to be published in a public fashion, I disagree with the media picking up on things they no little or nothing about (more often the latter) and inflating it into headline news on a day when little else is going on. "Oh yeay, here's another aviation scare story, been a while since the last one!!"
I used to love the smell of Jet-A in the morning...
 
prebennorholm
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 8:33 am

Skymonster, of course you are right. In principle.

But we only have the press which we have. And what they need is sensation, disasters and blood. Day by day. It's tough business for them.

Nobody can blame Rick767 for reacting as he does. This type of "sensitive feelings" rather than hard facts are difficult to deliver properly to the ordinary, infrequent airline passengers like me, and the press we have is totally incapable to do so, my Danish press for sure and certainly the British press too.

I'm pretty sure that the CHIRP system (sorry for misspelling it before) would work better if it was not public domain. Or if it released facts only to public domain.
Always keep your number of landings equal to your number of take-offs
 
Skymonster
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 8:42 am

Rick767,

Well yes, you're right. The media's adverse interpretation of such matters is not confined to aviation, but nor should the media's interpretation of such be allowed to influence the reporting of issues as promoted by CHIRPS. In today's world, media and public reaction to programs such as CHIRPS is something that has to be lived with and managed, rather than it being a motivator for burying these issues in closed industry processes which if exposed would heap yet more public suspicion and even scorn on the industry.

Andy
There are old pilots and there are bold pilots, but there are no old bold pilots
 
Rick767
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RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 8:56 am

Skymonster,

Quite agree.

Perhaps I over-reacted a little before. I would still have no hesitation to file a report to CHIRP in the event of a serious safety issue arising, which would otherwise go unreported.

My point is that if a small issue arose, which could potentially have led to a more serious issue but didn't, I would now consider the implication that if the report I made were published the media could blow it out of all proportion and scare the public. At times like this when the industry is still recovering from loss of public confidence in flying, that would be a tough choice. In that sense, the media could destroy the system.

I read with interest every issue of "FEEDBACK" and attempt to apply every relevant topic to the operations I am involved in, no matter how significant the issue appears. It would be sad if the system which has become so strong over the years was defeated by those not even interested in improving safety. That was my point.

Rick.
I used to love the smell of Jet-A in the morning...
 
Skymonster
Posts: 3428
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2001 7:53 pm

RE: No Frills Pilots Ignoring ATC In The UK

Thu Jun 20, 2002 9:14 am

Well then Rick767, in that case we agree to agree! Big grin

Now I'm going to bed!!! Important meeting with Iberia later today!

Andy
There are old pilots and there are bold pilots, but there are no old bold pilots

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