QF108
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Tue May 15, 2007 10:57 am

Did a search and didn't find anything on this, the article is from todays Sydney Morning Herald,

http://www.smh.com.au/news/national/...avoc/2007/05/14/1178995079800.html

It was really foggy yesterday morning, I believe that it only caused one go-around which was a DJ737 unsure which flight. All other flights that attempted to land got in safely. This was a bit of a no-win situation for UA, im sure QF can call upon 744 crews based in BNE to fly the BNE-SYD sector, whereas UA has two flights a day to SYD, thus it seems the only available were the UA839/840 SYD-MEL-SYD crew.
Still it seems that westbound flight from the US seems to take forever to get here flying direct, let alone going to via BNE and have to wait for the pilots to fly from SYD-BNE twice !

This diversion from the 9th may not have helped when looking for crews either,

http://www.vpmag.com/yssy/viewtopic.php?t=19118

[Edited 2007-05-15 04:01:25]
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LAXintl
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Tue May 15, 2007 11:05 am

For a little more balanced reporting, the fog also caused problems for Qantas not only United in addition to the good citizens of Sydney which saw public transport disrupted as well.


http://www.smh.com.au/news/national/...dney/2007/05/14/1178995029309.html

Transport turmoil as fog engulfs Sydney

Sydney transport services are back to normal after a heavy fog caused delays to ferries, planes and cars this morning.

The fog caused six international flights to be diverted, Sydney Airport said in a statement.

Five flights - QF74, QF12, QF108, UA839 and UA864 went to Brisbane and one flight, QF22, flew to Melbourne.
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VHVXB
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Tue May 15, 2007 11:20 am

Quoting Laxintl (Reply 1):
Five flights - QF74, QF12, QF108, UA839 and UA864 went to Brisbane and one flight, QF22, flew to Melbourne.

It was 7 including QF22
QF12 - VH-OEG - LAX-(BNE)-SYD
QF74 - VH-OJN - SFO-(BNE)-SYD
QF108 - VH-OEF - JFK-LAX-(BNE)-SYD
QF94 - VH-OEI - LAX-(BNE)-MEL
UA839 - N127UA - JFK-LAX-(BNE)-SYD
UA863 - N178UA - ORD-SFO-(BNE)-SYD
 
QF108
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Tue May 15, 2007 11:26 am

Quoting Laxintl (Reply 1):
For a little more balanced reporting, the fog also caused problems for Qantas not only United in addition to the good citizens of Sydney which saw public transport disrupted as well

Don't get me wrong this wasn't meant to be a UA bashing, have flown them several times and would be happy to fly them again, in fact I fly UA especially domestically in the US Ch.9 is the best IFE around ! They were just the main focus of this story, it would have been nice if the article mentioned that UA don't have extra crews on standy for the one or two days a year this happens. But the headline passengers horrendous 27 hour ordeal is going to sell more newspapers !
Blessed are the Cheesemakers !
 
Ryanair!!!
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Tue May 15, 2007 11:29 am

I have been in this Sydney foggy situation before and was in a BA 747 which did a go-around after attepmtping to land in the fog but to no avail. We eventually diverted to BNE and saw a whole line of strange widebodies when we landed, including a UA 747, QF747-400 etc... which are not normally found in BNE on a normal day. I have attached the report below...

I guess this annual occurence is a norm.

http://www.airliners.net/discussions/trip_reports/read.main/33200
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sunrisevalley
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Tue May 15, 2007 8:33 pm

Doesn't SYD have CAT III ILS ?
 
Ryanair!!!
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Tue May 15, 2007 8:49 pm

Quoting SunriseValley (Reply 5):

Apparently not because when the BA 747 that I was on did the go-around, the pilot mentioned that although the aircraft was able to land in zero-visibility, the airport wasn't equipped to handle such an approach.
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Curmudgeon
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Tue May 15, 2007 8:49 pm

SYD does not even have CAT II ILS. In fact there are no ILS installations in all of Australia better than CAT I. The weather here just doesn't warrant it, or at least that's the official story. On the other hand, when you need it, you really need it. The expectation is that RNP approaches will eventually have very low limits, but that's some time away yet.
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RDUDDJI
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Wed May 16, 2007 4:00 am

Quoting Curmudgeon (Reply 7):
SYD does not even have CAT II ILS. In fact there are no ILS installations in all of Australia better than CAT I. The weather here just doesn't warrant it, or at least that's the official story.

That's surprising and quasi embarrassing. You'd think they'd equip at least one RWY at each major jetport with CAT III? Wow.
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HAL
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Wed May 16, 2007 5:08 am

Quoting Curmudgeon (Reply 7):
The expectation is that RNP approaches will eventually have very low limits, but that's some time away yet.

RNP approaches will have lower minimums than current RNAV and GPS approaches, and in some cases they will match Cat I ILS mins, but they won't go lower than that. They are a means to get ILS-like minimums to airports and runways that lack ILS's, or for curved approaches where ILS type approaches are impossible. They won't however allow approaches to Cat II or III levels.

HAL
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787EWR
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Wed May 16, 2007 5:31 am

Quoting RDUDDJI (Reply 8):
That's surprising and quasi embarrassing. You'd think they'd equip at least one RWY at each major jetport with CAT III? Wow.

I would agree. Kingsford sits right on the bay. I would imagine they have inclement weather some time.

BNE is an international airport however, they have customs(i've gone through it). I don't understand why they could not let the passengers off and keep them in the arrivals lounge until the new crew came in from SYD
 
Curmudgeon
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Wed May 16, 2007 5:35 am

Yeah, I got a little ahead of myself on that one. The ILS is still the required approach aid to get low limits...I was thinking of HGS displays on CAT II rwys allowing CAT III minima.

Australia might only need CAT III once a year if that, and then only for a couple of hours. The obvious problem are the oceanic flights arriving t the margins of the curfew...0601 and 2300, right in peak fog time.

As far as embarrassing goes...no, not so much. I don't think that anyone here is embarrassed to only need low limits for a few hours a year. Sunscreen on the other hand....

Cur.
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fuffla
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Wed May 16, 2007 6:17 am

Just a question, why would this flight:

QF94 - VH-OEI - LAX-(BNE)-MEL

have to go via Brisbane? Its final destination is Melbourne, and that is supposibly clear given that another flight also landed there.
 
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eta unknown
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Wed May 16, 2007 7:13 am

Re QF094- I would imagine SYD is that flight's diversion airport and with SYD closed, the crew elected to put down in BNE in case something unexpected happened a little further south.
 
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EK413
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Wed May 16, 2007 8:07 am

Quoting Fuffla (Reply 12):
QF94 - VH-OEI - LAX-(BNE)-MEL

have to go via Brisbane? Its final destination is Melbourne, and that is supposibly clear given that another flight also landed there.

The flight terminates in SYD and then operates a International/domestic sector QF074 and returning in the evening forming the QF073...

EK413
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VHXLR8
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Wed May 16, 2007 9:25 am

Quoting 787EWR (Reply 10):
BNE is an international airport however, they have customs(i've gone through it). I don't understand why they could not let the passengers off and keep them in the arrivals lounge until the new crew came in from SYD

This part doesn't sound right to me either. I don't see why the pax just weren't kept in the airside part of the terminal while they waited. Furthermore, it seems a gross safety/security violation to have pax on an aircraft without crew!! Transit requirements require at least 7 crew onboard a 747 whilst on the ground.
 
AJ
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Wed May 16, 2007 9:40 am

One issue that the passengers had is their precious duty free alcohol purchases. Every transit flight at Australian International Terminals must be screened to the new LAGs rules, even if operating a domestic sector. The United passengers were not impressed that they would have to surrender their bottles of booze so a deal was struck to have them hold stowed!
 
SFORunner
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Wed May 16, 2007 9:57 am

Quoting VHVXB (Reply 2):
It was 7 including QF22

7 x 747s = a lot of pax. Let's be conservative and say roughly 200 per aircraft.

1400: that's a high number of "unexpected" pax to show up at your door.

Quoting 787EWR (Reply 10):
BNE is an international airport however, they have customs(i've gone through it). I don't understand why they could not let the passengers off and keep them in the arrivals lounge until the new crew came in from SYD

How much space is in the arrivals lounge area?

If illegal crews required all pax disembark, how many immigration and custom agents are there to handle them? What about ramp crew to unload their baggage?

How many 747 movements does BNE see on a "normal" day?

Not to slight BNE ... but if there aren't folks and space on the ground to process pax, it's easier to leave pax on the aircraft (from the airport's perspective) as long as necessary/possible.
 
VHVXB
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Wed May 16, 2007 6:28 pm

Quoting SFORunner (Reply 17):
7 x 747s = a lot of pax. Let's be conservative and say roughly 200 per aircraft.

6 flights to be correct. QF22 is operated by the A333
 
Boeing7E7
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Wed May 16, 2007 6:53 pm

Quoting RDUDDJI (Reply 8):
That's surprising and quasi embarrassing. You'd think they'd equip at least one RWY at each major jetport with CAT III? Wow.

If it has an ILS then its the lack of the right approach lights/runway lights that prohibits the CAT II/III. ILS is the same regardless the approach category and it should have a fail safe generator standard. If not, then it's embarasing and somone should spend the $3 million to get it up to par, at least at Sydney.
 
qfflyer
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Wed May 16, 2007 7:04 pm

Quoting EK413 (Reply 14):
Quoting Fuffla (Reply 12):
QF94 - VH-OEI - LAX-(BNE)-MEL

have to go via Brisbane? Its final destination is Melbourne, and that is supposibly clear given that another flight also landed there.

The flight terminates in SYD and then operates a International/domestic sector QF074 and returning in the evening forming the QF073...

I was under the impression that this [QF 94] was a LAX-MEL direct fight at all times [diversions excepted], and that QF 26 formed the QF 73 MEL-SYD international/domestic sector, before becoming QF 5 to FRA.

Cheers
 
Curmudgeon
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Wed May 16, 2007 8:12 pm

Quoting Boeing7E7 (Reply 19):
ILS is the same regardless the approach category and it should have a fail safe generator standard. If not, then it's embarasing and somone should spend the $3 million to get it up to par, at least at Sydney.

Not ll ILS installations are created equal. The shielding, calibration and and maintenance requirements are different. The approach/runway lighting issue would take more than 3 million to cure. Maybe as much as 10 times that.
Jets are for kids
 
trent1000
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Wed May 16, 2007 8:50 pm

http://www.news.com.au/travel/story/...3519-27977,00.html?from=public_rss

FOG and duty-free liquor caused what was described as a near-riot among passengers on a United Airlines flight which diverted to Brisbane yesterday because Sydney was closed.
"something akin to a riot occurred," according to one airport worker. "Those passengers simply did not want to stay on board."

Quoting SFORunner (Reply 17):
How many 747 movements does BNE see on a "normal" day?

According to flightstats.com BNE today has four 744 arrivals/departures - QF, JL, NZ, MH.
(from a total of 30 international arrivals)
 
Boeing7E7
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Wed May 16, 2007 10:58 pm

Quoting Curmudgeon (Reply 21):
Not ll ILS installations are created equal. The shielding, calibration and and maintenance requirements are different. The approach/runway lighting issue would take more than 3 million to cure. Maybe as much as 10 times that.

There is a single ILS accuracy standard with varied localizer antenna arrays, the largest glidelsope and antenna array is about $500k-$750k installed. The cost of an ALSF-II lighting system installed is $1.5 million per runway. For $2-2.5 million you get CAT III to the primary runway end. For $3.5-4 million you get both ends of one runway. Even if you need to update all of the runway lighting, regulators and controllers, you're still only looking at about $7-10 million per runway depending on what needs to be replaced. This is a very low cost project.
 
Curmudgeon
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Thu May 17, 2007 3:15 am

Thanks for the information on the prices for the electronics. I still dont think that the airport would or could do anything for only 3 million. Also, SYD is privately owned by an investment bank, the same one that was spearheading the recent failed attempt to buy QF. They are not in the business of spending money for aviation. The landing fees generated by a CAT II approach aid would not provide an RoI. (The airplane arrives anyway eventually).
Jets are for kids
 
Sydscott
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Thu May 17, 2007 6:41 am

If you think the Fog was bad today, wait until you see it this morning. I'm sitting here in Chifley Tower and from Hunter and Elizabeth Street I can barely see down to the old courthouse. I can't see Hyde Park at all!! This is way thicker than it was yesterday.
 
EddieDude
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Thu May 17, 2007 7:12 am

It seems that some flights are being diverted now to other airports, including CBR.
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sparklehorse12
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Thu May 17, 2007 7:21 am

Quoting Curmudgeon (Reply 24):
Thanks for the information on the prices for the electronics. I still dont think that the airport would or could do anything for only 3 million. Also, SYD is privately owned by an investment bank, the same one that was spearheading the recent failed attempt to buy QF. They are not in the business of spending money for aviation. The landing fees generated by a CAT II approach aid would not provide an RoI. (The airplane arrives anyway eventually).

I can't see McBank doing anything out of grace for the good of aviation. If you are not QF you are a pain in the butt because you might actually challenge their arrogance."If there's fog, there's fog, not our fault you stupid other airlines" " QF come and land ahead of everyone else" As Curmudgeon says "The airplane arrives anyway eventually"

Curmudgeon - you really crack me up!
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QF108
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Thu May 17, 2007 8:03 am

Quoting Sydscott (Reply 25):
If you think the Fog was bad today, wait until you see it this morning

Just released from the Sydney Morning Herald
http://www.smh.com.au/news/national/...gain/2007/05/17/1178995269666.html

A total of 25 international flights diverted according to the arcticle,

"Flights from the US, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Singapore, Germany, Britain, the United Arab Emirates, Japan, New Zealand and Thailand were affected."

If you are in either BNE or MEL or as eddiedude said even Canberra it looks as though your in for an even bigger treat than Tuesday.
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VHVXB
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Thu May 17, 2007 9:32 am

Ok here are the following flight which were diverted this morning
MEL
QF6
EK412
CX111
EY450
TG995
UA863
VS200
GA714
QF136
QF40

BNE
BA15
BA9
KE811
OZ601
QF22
QF108
JL771
QF128
MH123
JQ18

And AC33 was cancelled
 
deltagator
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Thu May 17, 2007 9:45 am

Quoting SFORunner (Reply 17):
How much space is in the arrivals lounge area?

Not a whole heck of a lot. Most definitely not enough to handle a bunch of 747s within an hour or so of each other.
"If you can't delight in the misery of others then you don't deserve to be a college football fan."
 
RDUDDJI
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Thu May 17, 2007 11:05 am

Quoting Curmudgeon (Reply 24):
The landing fees generated by a CAT II approach aid would not provide an RoI. (The airplane arrives anyway eventually).

I have to respectfully disagree. At the nation's primary airport, it's really unfathomable that they don't have at least one CAT III approach. Yes, planes will arrive eventually, but look at UA (and other Int'ls), they are international carriers whose crews are based at least 14 hours away. To me, it's embarrassing that you invite Int'l carriers to your country but cannot accommodate them in fog? The investment is well worth the return if you want to run an International operation. Some could argue there is also a safety concern here too...

Quoting Boeing7E7 (Reply 19):
If it has an ILS then its the lack of the right approach lights/runway lights that prohibits the CAT II/III. ILS is the same regardless the approach category and it should have a fail safe generator standard. If not, then it's embarasing and somone should spend the $3 million to get it up to par, at least at Sydney.

Actually, I'd say the biggest hurdle might be getting it certified by ICAO (or whomever oversees that).
Sometimes we don't realize the good times when we're in them
 
Stealthz
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Thu May 17, 2007 11:24 am

Quoting Curmudgeon (Reply 24):
Also, SYD is privately owned by an investment bank, the same one that was spearheading the recent failed attempt to buy QF. They are not in the business of spending money for aviation. The landing fees generated by a CAT II approach aid would not provide an RoI. (The airplane arrives anyway eventually).

I was under the impression that air navigation infrastructure was provided by and funded by Air Services Australia not the airport operator.
Not attempting to imply funding for such improvements will be easier to get, just thought it was via different channels.

Fo those that think this is unacceptable for a major airport, if the improvements talked about were made they would have to be payed for, increased landing fees, levies taxes whatever, maybe the customers (the airlines and their passengers) are content to put up with this disruption a few times a year rather than pay for the changes everyday.
Don't forget it costs just as much to "fog proof" an airport that is affected 3-4 times a year as it does one that is fog bound 1-200 days a year.

Cheers
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sparklehorse12
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Thu May 17, 2007 11:56 am

Quoting RDUDDJI (Reply 31):
I have to respectfully disagree. At the nation's primary airport, it's really unfathomable that they don't have at least one CAT III approach. Yes, planes will arrive eventually, but look at UA (and other Int'ls), they are international carriers whose crews are based at least 14 hours away. To me, it's embarrassing that you invite Int'l carriers to your country but cannot accommodate them in fog? The investment is well worth the return if you want to run an International operation. Some could argue there is also a safety concern here too...

Talk to Max Moore Wilton or the Australian Government. The two tighest asses in Australia.
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Sydscott
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Thu May 17, 2007 12:48 pm

Quoting Curmudgeon (Reply 24):
Also, SYD is privately owned by an investment bank, the same one that was spearheading the recent failed attempt to buy QF. They are not in the business of spending money for aviation. The landing fees generated by a CAT II approach aid would not provide an RoI.

I think you'll find that Air Traffic Control etc is managed by Air Services Australia which is a government organisation. So it really has nothing to do with Sydney Airport. If the Government wanted to do upgrades to Air Traffic Control systems then they could at any time.

Quoting RDUDDJI (Reply 31):
At the nation's primary airport, it's really unfathomable that they don't have at least one CAT III approach. Yes, planes will arrive eventually, but look at UA (and other Int'ls), they are international carriers whose crews are based at least 14 hours away.

Two points;

1) I don't think it is unfathomable because Sydney Airport is only effected for what 3 or 4 mornings per year. I think that Air Services Australia has better things to spend their money on quite frankly than upgrading to something that will rarely be used.
2) In Uniteds case their diversions were poorly handled by THEM. As you point out they are an international carrier and they have flown into Sydney for some years now. They would know that the airport can be foggy on a remote occassion and yet from the reports in the media of what happened to their passengers, their planning for that eventuality was appalling.

Quoting Sparklehorse12 (Reply 33):
or the Australian Government. The two tighest asses in Australia

Would you not expect the government to be tight arsed??
 
aussie_
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Thu May 17, 2007 4:06 pm

To add to the list from VH-VXB, the following internationals ended up in Canberra today:

Emirates 777-300ER from BKK/DXB (A6-EBN)
Atlas Air (for QF) 747-400F from HKG (N412MC)
Qantas 767-300ER from AKL (VH-OGF)
 
monteycarlos
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Thu May 17, 2007 5:27 pm

Quoting Ryanair!!! (Reply 4):
We eventually diverted to BNE and saw a whole line of strange widebodies when we landed, including a UA 747, QF747-400 etc... which are not normally found in BNE on a normal day. I have attached the report below...

You should have seen MEL at 0800 this morning. One of the UA flights was sitting off the gates, engines running for at least an hour.

Quoting VHVXB (Reply 29):
And AC33 was cancelled

Hmmmm, not sure about that. I definately saw an AC 763 at MEL this morning. It was one of the four aircraft that parked on Sierra taxiway due to the congestion.
It's a beautiful night to fly like a phoenix...
 
VH-KCT*
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Thu May 17, 2007 5:56 pm

Quoting RDUDDJI (Reply 31):
To me, it's embarrassing that you invite Int'l carriers to your country but cannot accommodate them in fog?

Well actually, I think you'll find that we can accomodate them in our country. Believe it or not, Melbourne, Brisbane and Canberra are a part of Australia.

Quoting RDUDDJI (Reply 31):
The investment is well worth the return if you want to run an International operation.

How do we get a return? You're asking us (Australian taxpayers) to foot the bill of perhaps $10m of so that once or twice a year, companies from overseas don't incur costs at just one of the aerodromes they serve.

Quoting RDUDDJI (Reply 31):
Some could argue there is also a safety concern here too...

They'd be hard pressed. When conditions are below minima like they were today, aircraft are diverted like they were today. How is that unsafe?

If you want to feel embarassed for us, go ahead. I'm just sitting back and enjoying the very rare sight of diverted traffic in MEL!  

[Edited 2007-05-17 11:12:42]
I am The Stig
 
VHVXB
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Thu May 17, 2007 6:06 pm

Quoting Monteycarlos (Reply 36):
Hmmmm, not sure about that. I definately saw an AC 763 at MEL this morning. It was one of the four aircraft that parked on Sierra taxiway due to the congestion.

my mistaken then Sydney Airport boards were showing it was cancelled
 
monteycarlos
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Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Thu May 17, 2007 6:25 pm

Quoting VHVXB (Reply 38):
my mistaken then Sydney Airport boards were showing it was cancelled

The departure may have been. Not too sure.

As for SYD and the CAT III issue, I think you'll find that there are only about 3 airports in the world equipped to deal with the kind of fog at SYD today. (Cat IIIc systems I believe?) If we're going to be embarassed about that well, I guess the rest of the world will have to be red faced as well.
It's a beautiful night to fly like a phoenix...
 
Curmudgeon
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RE: Fog In SYD Yesterday=Problems For UA Passengers

Thu May 17, 2007 8:07 pm

For what it's worth, I personally think that the local ILS installations should be at CAT II standards. I remain sanguine about the prospects of that occurring in my lifetime however. Australia's premiere gateway is SYD, and there should be at least some prospect of a landing after a long flight. But I'm not going to pay for it.

I am under the impression that airport specific approach aids are funded by the airport in question, as are runways and taxiways. Air traffic control is provided by the federal agency concerned, but that is tangential to the question of the ILS.

As to real or perceived embarrassment about the level of service...Nah. If it was that big of a deal the airlines would lobby hard for it, and they'd spend the money for crew training (Oz based carriers).

On safety: It is the autumn here in the southern hemisphere, and at this time of year everywhere there is the occasional fog. Anybody who has spent much time in long pants knows this, and plans alternate fuel accordingly. Hell, the regulations even require it. I'm not sure where safety is compromised.

Paris (Orly? CDG?) used to have an array of jet engines that would be fired up to burn off the fog and provide schedule reliability. The airlines refused to pay for that too, but I don't think the French got too embarrassed about it. Then again, they invented "c'est la vie".

This is part of the ebb and flow of airline operations. Next time JFK or YYZ has a blizzard, or a line of TRW goes through ORD or DTW or STL please let me know how "all weather" the operations were that day.

Curmudgeon. (Missed approach veteran at LHR, ZRH, LIN, LGA, DTW, DFW, and many many more
Jets are for kids
 
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EK413
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RE: Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Thu May 17, 2007 10:21 pm

Quoting EK413 (Reply 14):

The flight terminates in SYD and then operates a International/domestic sector QF074 and returning in the evening forming the QF073...

EK413



Quoting QFFlyer (Reply 20):

I was under the impression that this [QF 94] was a LAX-MEL direct fight at all times [diversions excepted], and that QF 26 formed the QF 73 MEL-SYD international/domestic sector, before becoming QF 5 to FRA.

Cheers

Sorry, I have requested my post be deleted due to the fact my information was refering to another flight / information...

EK413
Good evening, ladies and gentlemen. We are tonight’s entertainment!
 
RDUDDJI
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RE: Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Fri May 18, 2007 12:30 am

So it appears most of the Australians who responded think CAT III ILS is a wasted investment at the nation's largest airport. That's exactly the reason I think it should be a mandate if you have an airport that handles a large amount of Int'l traffic. I wrote to the SMH after I read the article originally, and someone actually wrote back to me and said that they would look into that angle of the story. I doubt I hear anything further, but thought that was nice.

Quoting VH-KCT* (Reply 37):
How do we get a return? You're asking us (Australian taxpayers) to foot the bill of perhaps $10m of so that once or twice a year, companies from overseas don't incur costs at just one of the aerodromes they serve.

How the airports pay for it doesn't really matter. The cost is low compared to the budget. They could tax the passengers, it would pay for itself quickly. (heck $1AUD/pax would pay for it at SYD in under a year). The return is a more efficient operation for your citizens and your visitors. And at last count, most of the diversions were QF's.

Quoting VH-KCT* (Reply 37):
Well actually, I think you'll find that we can accomodate them in our country. Believe it or not, Melbourne, Brisbane and Canberra are a part of Australia.

Appreciated. But the thread is about SYD.

Quoting Monteycarlos (Reply 39):
As for SYD and the CAT III issue, I think you'll find that there are only about 3 airports in the world equipped to deal with the kind of fog at SYD today. (Cat IIIc systems I believe?) If we're going to be embarassed about that well, I guess the rest of the world will have to be red faced as well.

Ummm, CAT IIIc is auto-land, no visibility required. So you were worse than no-visibility? Every Catergory X, and nearly all Cat I airports in the U.S. have this capability. I can't speak for the rest of the World, but most major International Airports have this (or similar) ability.

Quoting Sydscott (Reply 34):
In Uniteds case their diversions were poorly handled by THEM. As you point out they are an international carrier and they have flown into Sydney for some years now. They would know that the airport can be foggy on a remote occassion and yet from the reports in the media of what happened to their passengers, their planning for that eventuality was appalling.

So your solution is UA should base crews at BNE, in the event there "happens" to be fog in SYD or MEL? Not a good solution. Other than that, they could have canceled the flight when they saw a forecast with a possibility of fog? As for the bad situation at BNE...well if they hadn't had 10+ other Int'l wide body diversions for the same reason, it wouldn't have been a major problem.

Quoting Curmudgeon (Reply 40):
On safety: It is the autumn here in the southern hemisphere, and at this time of year everywhere there is the occasional fog. Anybody who has spent much time in long pants knows this, and plans alternate fuel accordingly. Hell, the regulations even require it. I'm not sure where safety is compromised.

What about that mechanical, or medical emergency that occurs while your burning your Contingency fuel circling hoping conditions will improve so you don't disservice 300 pax.
Sometimes we don't realize the good times when we're in them
 
Sydscott
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RE: Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Fri May 18, 2007 7:31 am

Quoting RDUDDJI (Reply 42):
So your solution is UA should base crews at BNE, in the event there "happens" to be fog in SYD or MEL? Not a good solution. Other than that, they could have canceled the flight when they saw a forecast with a possibility of fog? As for the bad situation at BNE...well if they hadn't had 10+ other Int'l wide body diversions for the same reason, it wouldn't have been a major problem.

No UAL has 2 daily flights into Sydney and, presumably, has at least two lots of crew here waiting to meet those flights. UAL schedulers would have seen the weather reports for Sydney and would have known before the aircraft arrived that Sydney was fogged in but that fog only lasted for a couple of hours. Certainly for no-where near the time that pax were stuck on their aircraft in Brisbane. UAL surely would have a backup crew in Sydney given the scale of their operation here that they could rotate out as part of normal operations. You can't tell me that if a flight crew of theirs was taken out by sickness or something in Sydney that they would have to fly a replacement crew in from the US. If they did have to do something like that then that would be extremely poor planning.

As for cancelling the flight, there is no point in that. Thats what diversions are for and BNE isn't all that far away when you're talking about a 14 hour flight to get here.

Quoting RDUDDJI (Reply 42):
What about that mechanical, or medical emergency that occurs while your burning your Contingency fuel circling hoping conditions will improve so you don't disservice 300 pax.

Um if there was a mechanical or medical emergency then the plane would divert en route. If a plane was travelling in from the US and was over the Tasman AND Syd was fogged in AND it had an emergency on board then they could divert to Brisbane or Auckland depending on who was closer. Either way they would have to be within ETOPS regulations so it would be a matter of diverting to the nearest airport. Certainly a plane with an emergency on board wouldn't circle waiting for fog to clear.
 
monteycarlos
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RE: Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Fri May 18, 2007 7:52 am

Quoting RDUDDJI (Reply 42):
They could tax the passengers, it would pay for itself quickly. (heck $1AUD/pax would pay for it at SYD in under a year). The return is a more efficient operation for your citizens and your visitors. And at last count, most of the diversions were QF's.

You're living in a dream world if you think thats the way it works. The costs would be passed directly to the airlines. I'd know because its been proposed to us before. No airline is willing to pay and hence the system is not in place. The justification: why do we need it? You've yet to answer that. I can personally say that for the fog that was experienced at its worst point yesterday, the RVR was below 200m which is at least a CAT IIIB system.

Quoting RDUDDJI (Reply 42):
Every Catergory X, and nearly all Cat I airports in the U.S. have this capability. I can't speak for the rest of the World, but most major International Airports have this (or similar) ability.

Category X? Now you've lost me. I don't know of many airports around the world that can accomodate less than 200m RVR. Besides, you're talking about out-dated systems anyway. Much more emphasis is being employed on the development of augmented GPS landing systems and other options. I recall a Qantas aircraft which landed under pilot supervision only at MEL under a new system developed through ACARS inputs.

In any case, these such events are rare at SYD. Once a year if that. How is it that this is embarassing? I'd be more worried about capacity issues rather than anything else.
It's a beautiful night to fly like a phoenix...
 
aussie_
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RE: Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Fri May 18, 2007 9:12 am

Once a year? It's already the second time this week!!

I'd be very surprised if not 2-3 more occurences before this winter is over, but every year, of course, is different!!
 
monteycarlos
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RE: Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Fri May 18, 2007 9:52 am

Quoting Aussie_ (Reply 45):
Once a year? It's already the second time this week!!

Actually, just read an article that said events like the fog yesterday happen on average twice a year in SYD and are invariably more common in May.
It's a beautiful night to fly like a phoenix...
 
RDUDDJI
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RE: Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Fri May 18, 2007 10:35 am

I agree, fog doesn't happen often at SYD...I never stipulated otherwise. It doesn't happen often at LAX either, but they have CAT III capabilities on two RWYs. Actually they probably see smoke more than fog...

Quoting Monteycarlos (Reply 44):
The justification: why do we need it? You've yet to answer that.

You need it because you can't land in heavy fog without it? Have you not been reading this thread?

Quoting Monteycarlos (Reply 44):
You're living in a dream world if you think thats the way it works. The costs would be passed directly to the airlines. I'd know because its been proposed to us before.

Again, as I said before, it's not up to me how you pay for it, I was merely presenting a logical example of how it *could* be done. I've never heard of an airport that must get permission from airlines before it does any upgrades. If that's how it's done down under, then that's how it is and there's no reason to beat a dead kangaroo.


Quoting Monteycarlos (Reply 44):
Category X?

The U.S. classifies it's airports into one of the following categories (basically based on volume)
Cat X (largest, and must have a significant amount of Int'l pax. There are about 20 of these in the U.S., I believe EWR was the last one added to the list a few years ago)
Cat I (Places like PIT, SAN, MSY, RDU, etc.)
Cat 2
Cat 3
Cat 4 (smallest)

Quoting Monteycarlos (Reply 44):
In any case, these such events are rare at SYD. Once a year if that. How is it that this is embarassing? I'd be more worried about capacity issues rather than anything else.

Because it made the news, and hence we're talking about it! If it wasn't a big deal, it wouldn't be newsworthy. Capacity issues are even more important IMO, but that's not what the thread was aboot.

Quoting Sydscott (Reply 43):
Um if there was a mechanical or medical emergency then the plane would divert en route. If a plane was travelling in from the US and was over the Tasman AND Syd was fogged in AND it had an emergency on board then they could divert to Brisbane or Auckland depending on who was closer. Either way they would have to be within ETOPS regulations so it would be a matter of diverting to the nearest airport. Certainly a plane with an emergency on board wouldn't circle waiting for fog to clear.

We are way off the original point here, but medical emergencies and some severe mechanical emergencies have nothing to do with ETOPS.
Sometimes we don't realize the good times when we're in them
 
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eta unknown
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RE: Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Fri May 18, 2007 11:50 am

I lived in Sydney for over 10 years. Those fog affected mornings happened 2- maybe 3 times a year tops. No airport management company in their right mind would install the equipment descibed above- it's financial stupidity. As correctly previously stated, United's station manager in SYD really stuffed this one up.
 
monteycarlos
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RE: Fog In SYD = Problems For UA Passengers

Fri May 18, 2007 12:54 pm

Quoting RDUDDJI (Reply 47):
You need it because you can't land in heavy fog without it? Have you not been reading this thread?

Ok, this is just getting ridiculous. I've read the thread. I am commenting that you have provided no evidence as to the financial viability of installing a CATIII system that will be used only 3 times a year. You're making it out like SYD is the only worldwide airport without CATIII. As stated previously (I've read the thread - have you?), that's what alternates are for? In your ideal world, aircraft would never divert would they?

As I said, RVR was less that 200m... How many worldwide airports have CATIIIB or CATIIIC systems? Not many. Address the points I raise, but don't accuse me of not reading the thread.

Quoting RDUDDJI (Reply 47):
I've never heard of an airport that must get permission from airlines before it does any upgrades. If that's how it's done down under, then that's how it is and there's no reason to beat a dead kangaroo.

Again, read the comment. The only way AirservicesAustralia will install a better system is if the airlines pay for it. Not give their permission... actually pay for it. They are not willing to do so. Can I spell it out any better?

And if you think that airports don't consult with and get approval from airlines before major upgrades, then I can only think you've never had any experience in the matter. It happens every single time there are airport works.

Quoting RDUDDJI (Reply 47):
Because it made the news, and hence we're talking about it! If it wasn't a big deal, it wouldn't be newsworthy.

I suspect the same thing would happen if there were a snowstorm in ORD, or a volcanic erruption in HNL. Diverted flights make news. So do many other things on this planet. The point of this thread was to discuss UA's problems in dealing with the issue. You've tried to turn that around onto Sydney Airport because obviously you have an affiliation with UA and wish to project that they are not at fault with the way they handled the situation. Yet you've provided nothing to suggest otherwise. I'll await your next crafty method of dodging your way around addressing any of these points.
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