User avatar
eksath
Crew
Posts: 1301
Joined: Tue Aug 03, 2004 6:19 am

$25 Mil. Award Vs ATC For Midair. Ouch!

Fri Mar 31, 2006 2:38 am

Boca pilot's family awarded $25 million in fatal mid-air collision near Deerfield

A Broward jury awarded $25.2 million Wednesday to the family of a pilot killed in a collision of two planes near Deerfield Beach almost three years ago.

http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/loc...37760.story?coll=sfla-news-broward


http://www.ntsb.gov/ntsb/brief.asp?ev_id=20030625X00951&key=19
NTSB conclusion
"The failure of the pilot of N4903F, the Cessna 172, and the pilot of N759XA , the Cessna 182, to see and avoid each other while operating in Class E airspace, resulting in a midair collision. Contributing to the accident was the lack of traffic information being provided to the pilot of the Cessna 182 about known traffic in the vicinity, due to the controller forgetting about the Cessna 172's reported path and altitude."
World Wide Aerospace Photography
 
IAHFLYR
Posts: 3943
Joined: Sat Jun 25, 2005 12:56 am

RE: $25 Mil. Award Vs ATC For Midair. Ouch!

Fri Mar 31, 2006 2:57 am

Incredible, just incredible in Class E airspace!
Any views shared are strictly my own and do not a represent those of any former employer.
 
echster
Posts: 393
Joined: Thu Sep 02, 2004 4:01 pm

RE: $25 Mil. Award Vs ATC For Midair. Ouch!

Fri Mar 31, 2006 4:01 am

Well, the controller was partially at fault. It was, nonetheless, an award higher than should have been given, IMHO. If you read the NTSB report, you'll get this info:

1. Contract tower staffed with 1 controller (well, that's not verbatim in the report but it's what happened). Said controller was working Local, Ground, Flight Data, and Clearance Delivery. It was a one-man show.

2. Although both aircraft were VFR and should be "seeing and avoiding", the ATCer should have known both aircraft were in (leaving or inbound) his airspace. He should have issued traffic advisories.

3. He didn't because he was issuing an IFR clearance for a departing aircraft on the Ground frequency.

4. He told aircraft #1 on initial contact to report east (in other words, when he was out of his airspace). When aircraft #2 was inbound for landing, he didn't catch the call sign because he was listening to the pilot readback his IFR clearance. He then says maintain VFR and freq change approved. He assumed it was aircraft #1 reporting clear of the airspace when it was actually the inbound aircraft.

5. Aircraft #2 then calls back for landing instructions and the controller has him enter the pattern.

6. Controller failed to use aircraft call sign when he assumed the 1st aircraft was clear. Had he used the call sign, aircraft #2 could have said they were the aircraft calling, or aircraft #1 could have said they were clear. This assumption and subsequent mix-up was a fairly big error.

I've said before and I'll say again this is how the companies that run contract towers make their money. They bid on the towers then staff them with the fewest controllers possible. Roughly 90-95% of contract towers in the US are manned with 1 controller per shift. It is the FAA's dirty little secret. If you've ever seen dollar figures on what an FAA tower costs to run versus a contract tower, staffing - or lack thereof - is the main reason.
 
IAHFLYR
Posts: 3943
Joined: Sat Jun 25, 2005 12:56 am

RE: $25 Mil. Award Vs ATC For Midair. Ouch!

Tue Apr 04, 2006 12:46 am

Quoting Echster (Reply 2):
(well, that's not verbatim in the report but it's what happened)

Don't make that assumption unless you heard the tape or were in the cab!

Quoting Echster (Reply 2):
Roughly 90-95% of contract towers in the US are manned with 1 controller per shift

That number seems mighty high, you may want to verify that before posting that! Do you consider the manager of the tower that is checked out and assigned a shift in that percentage??
Any views shared are strictly my own and do not a represent those of any former employer.
 
speedbird128
Posts: 1562
Joined: Tue Oct 28, 2003 2:30 am

RE: $25 Mil. Award Vs ATC For Midair. Ouch!

Tue Apr 04, 2006 3:44 am

Quoting Echster (Reply 2):
staffing - or lack thereof - is the main reason

This is an issue at many aiports around the world - not only 'contract towers'.

Aviation movements are on an upward increasing trend - and the number of ATC's is not growing at the same rate.

Managements are always trying to find ways to squeeze the 'atc tube' a little more. ie pay-cuts, staff-cuts...

Good luck to the guys and gals out there! We have to keep at it to make sure it stays safe...
A306, A313, A319, A320, A321, A332, A343, A345, A346 A388, AC90, B06, B722, B732, B733, B735, B738, B744, B762, B772, B7

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: A330freak, Baidu [Spider], BreninTW, Cassi, Channex757, debonair, Heavierthanair, Mumrik, PanHAM, redroo, seahawk and 202 guests