Utah744
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Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Wed Aug 31, 2011 10:18 pm

As per link below the grounded Captain for ASA contends that his grounding was because he cost the company money by having safety concerns about landing in what he calls severe weather in MKE. They say he had a psychotic episode and used the fact that he had seen a psychologist years ago while he was going through a divorce. I have flown with pilots going through a divorce and in almost all cases they should not have been flying. Something like this on a pilot's record would keep him from being hired by a major airline, and send a chilling message to the rest of the pilot group.

I wonder if any other ASA guys can shed more light on this.

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Lemond...elieved-prnews-3410696245.html?x=0
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Mir
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 3:44 am

I wonder what the next pilot who wants to divert due to weather will have running through his mind as he figures out whether the make the call or not.

Of course, it'll still be listed as pilot error on the accident report.  

-Mir
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fxramper
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 3:56 am

I've heard of plenty of guys not wanting to drive a bus across either ocean because of mechanical issues only to have their company send them home, pay them for the trip, but have another pilot fly the jet. Need to watch that MX budget, right?
 
Fly2HMO
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 3:58 am

I get the feeling there's more to it than the article suggests, but assuming the general jist of the article is correct, this really make my blood boil.

It's no secret that airlines, specially the regionals, put $$$ over safety, even if they may say so otherwise.
 
Mir
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 4:20 am

Quoting Fly2HMO (Reply 3):
I get the feeling there's more to it than the article suggests

Well, the real question is "how bad was the weather in MKE"?

But, let's say for the sake of argument that is was severe clear and calm winds, and he wanted to divert anyway. Would the company really have to resort to pulling up a psychological case from years past to get rid of him? I suspect not.

-Mir
7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
 
apodino
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 5:13 am

The article mentions that in the incident in question, there was a bad case of snow and ice at MKE. Being very familiar with MKE, I tend to believe the pilot here. MKE is one of the worst airports in the country (That are susceptible to regular winter weather) when it comes to snow removal, and they have had several incidents over the past years of planes off the runway in icy conditions.

I am not a medical expert, but I do believe that certain psychological problems can actually medically disqualify you, but someone can correct me if I am wrong.
 
flyorski
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 5:34 am

It is reasons like this that I would support a union for ASA.
"None are more hopelessly enslaved, than those who falsly believe they are free" -Goethe
 
cbphoto
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 5:34 am

Even if there is not more to the article, the captain still did the right thing. Going on to future interviews, it's slightly easier explaining why you got fired (in this case wrongly so) then why you skidded off the runway in the middle of a blizzard!

I am going to agree with fly2HMO, there is most likely more to this then meets the eye, or is reported in this article!
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Burkhard
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 6:37 am

If anything from this article is true, I cannot understand why all ASA pilots are not on strike until the responsible management is fired.

Management that puts pressure onto a pilot to take an action that from the information he has at the given moment he may consider as undafe should be fined for tried murder.
 
NBGSkyGod
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 10:23 am

Quoting Burkhard (Reply 8):
If anything from this article is true, I cannot understand why all ASA pilots are not on strike until the responsible management is fired.

Because if they went on strike, they would all be terminated and replaced and it would be perfectly legal for ASA to do so because they are non-union employees. Not a good plan when you are barely above the poverty line as it is.

If he as a case for wrongful termination (possibly under the whistle blower act), which is sounds like he does, he can take it up with the state employment commission and they will make a decision on weather or not he can be reinstated or compensated by ASA until he finds new employment.
Pilots are idots, who at any given moment will attempt to kill themselves or others.
 
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par13del
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 10:32 am

Quoting Fly2HMO (Reply 3):
It's no secret that airlines, specially the regionals, put $$$ over safety,

Since the majority of regionals are flying and exist because of legacy carriers, their demands for low price flying is a contributing factor, in my book they are just as complicit, it's an industry problem in general not a regional problem.
Legacy carriers are free to cater to one segment of the market, if international flying is profitable, abandon their domestic networks, pax then have to find their own way around the US.
 
leothedog
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 12:32 pm

I would fly with this guy everyday of the week and twice on Sundays.
I've got things to see and people to do.
 
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seabosdca
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 12:51 pm

On the one hand, we have to keep in mind that this is a press release by the guy's lawyer.

On the other hand, if it's true that they used information from an employee assistance program in deciding whether to terminate him, that is a horrendous breach of trust, and basically makes employee assistance programs useless. If the allegations are true, then ASA is going to be liable on several levels.
 
xdlx
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 1:14 pm

Quoting leothedog (Reply 11):

What ever happened to "Command Authority". I thought that the buck stopped there.
 
BoxBoy
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 1:41 pm

"Pilot pushing" happens all the time at the regionals. Sure it is all about the money. The regionals are competing against one another for the business of the legacy. It is a race to the bottom of the barrel.

Pilots beware. DO NOT go see a shrink. Pilots medical records are not private. Your employer and the FAA may request a copy of them. If you say any of the key words, for example "depressed, depression, stressed, etc", you must report that on your medical application FOREVER. The first time you experience any of those feelings you must report it to the FAA, surrender your medical until your case is reviewed. You are out of work for a minimum of 6 months while the FAA gets an independent psychiatric review. Typically speaking you'll be out of work for 12 months.

If this pilot did not report his emotional state to the FAA, he is in trouble. Not only will he lose his job, but the FAA may go after his ticket. Fair--no way, but reality here. If I remember correctly, I believe a couple of AA pilots went to prison for falsifying their FAA medical application (about 20 years ago).

In case anyone from the FAA is reading, I feel great. I have never felt anything but motivated, rested, focused, and happy. I do not recall a single moment in time that I didn't feel on top of my game.
 
Lufthansa411
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 1:47 pm

Quoting xdlx (Reply 13):
What ever happened to "Command Authority". I thought that the buck stopped there.

In most cases it does, but just because the final decision rests with the pilot does not mean that the company is not watching or tracking what decisions those pilots make. If you have a pilot that seems to divert/not fly/nitpick at several times the company average they may have a meeting with the pilot to figure out why. There are those kinds of captains at every airline- and the bean counters are not their best friends.

Not saying that was a motivation in this case as we do not have the full story, but it could be a factor.
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eldanno
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 2:26 pm

Quoting BoxBoy (Reply 14):
I feel great. I have never felt anything but motivated, rested, focused, and happy. I do not recall a single moment in time that I didn't feel on top of my game.

I'm picturing Eric Idle's character in European Vacation....
 
tp1040
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 2:28 pm

Please note that the linked item is NOT a news story. A reporter did not write or investigate any "story."

It is a press release from the plaintiff's law firm.
 
futureualpilot
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 2:28 pm

Quoting flyorski (Reply 6):

It is reasons like this that I would support a union for ASA.
Quoting Burkhard (Reply 8):
I cannot understand why all ASA pilots are not on strike until the responsible management is fired.
Quoting NBGSkyGod (Reply 9):
Because if they went on strike, they would all be terminated and replaced and it would be perfectly legal for ASA to do so because they are non-union employees.

ASA pilots are unionized under ALPA. Pilots cannot just up and strike because of the Railway labor Act in this country. If we could, you would likely see many more strikes than there have been.

Depending on the details, good for the Captain. I hope it works out. Regionals are a joke when it comes to safety.
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co38
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 2:37 pm

IMHO the company has no business second guessing the PICs operational decisions. As we all know, the pilots and PIC in particular are the final authority onboard an aircraft and also are the one that has to answer if anything goes wrong. Especially of theres an incident as a result of bad decision making or violation the Operation Manual or FARs.

But I am sure the company expects their pilots to be competent enough to handle the aircraft within the limits of the Operations Manual.
Nevertheless I think this sends a dangerous signal to other pilots (in ASA). Wether or not you have a job tomorrow as a result of your decision is the last thing you should worry about when you perform a go around or divert because of i.e weather.
 
saab2000
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 3:14 pm

Probably a lot more to this story than meets the eye.....

I am a captain at a similar company and have diverted a number of times due to weather. It surely cost the company money. Yet I have never been called to explain my actions and have felt no hostility because of these diversions and on one occasion I was praised by my manager for making proper decisions.

Unless anyone here knows what really happened it's all just speculation. There are likely a lot of things here we don't know about.
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NBGSkyGod
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 3:25 pm

Quoting futureualpilot (Reply 18):
ASA pilots are unionized under ALPA. Pilots cannot just up and strike because of the Railway labor Act in this country. If we could, you would likely see many more strikes than there have been.

Ah sorry I was under the impression that ASA was non-union, since they are unionized then yes you are correct.
Pilots are idots, who at any given moment will attempt to kill themselves or others.
 
Charlienoble
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 3:35 pm

Quoting BoxBoy (Reply 14):
Pilots beware. DO NOT go see a shrink. Pilots medical records are not private. Your employer and the FAA may request a copy of them. If you say any of the key words, for example "depressed, depression, stressed, etc", you must report that on your medical application FOREVER. The first time you experience any of those feelings you must report it to the FAA, surrender your medical until your case is reviewed. You are out of work for a minimum of 6 months while the FAA gets an independent psychiatric review. Typically speaking you'll be out of work for 12 months.

If this pilot did not report his emotional state to the FAA, he is in trouble. Not only will he lose his job, but the FAA may go after his ticket. Fair--no way, but reality here. If I remember correctly, I believe a couple of AA pilots went to prison for falsifying their FAA medical application (about 20 years ago).

In case anyone from the FAA is reading, I feel great. I have never felt anything but motivated, rested, focused, and happy. I do not recall a single moment in time that I didn't feel on top of my game.

Agree 100%.

If you are in any kind of competitive work environment the last thing you ever want to do is tell ANYONE that you are feeling anything other than on the top of your game. You may think you are reaching out for help but all you are doing is opening yourself up to get screwed. Which will make you feel even worse LOL.
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plateman
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 3:50 pm

Very important .. this is NOT an article, but a press release from a law firm. Huge difference.
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KAUST
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 4:01 pm

Quoting BoxBoy (Reply 14):
Pilots beware. DO NOT go see a shrink. Pilots medical records are not private. Your employer and the FAA may request a copy of them. If you say any of the key words, for example "depressed, depression, stressed, etc", you must report that on your medical application FOREVER. The first time you experience any of those feelings you must report it to the FAA, surrender your medical until your case is reviewed. You are out of work for a minimum of 6 months while the FAA gets an independent psychiatric review. Typically speaking you'll be out of work for 12 months.

If this pilot did not report his emotional state to the FAA, he is in trouble. Not only will he lose his job, but the FAA may go after his ticket. Fair--no way, but reality here. If I remember correctly, I believe a couple of AA pilots went to prison for falsifying their FAA medical application (about 20 years ago).

In case anyone from the FAA is reading, I feel great. I have never felt anything but motivated, rested, focused, and happy. I do not recall a single moment in time that I didn't feel on top of my game.

Agree 100%.


Disagree, somewhat. As a once "depressed, stressed" person, myself, I can say, it is not always about you, as a "motivated, rested, focused and happy" person. Seems to pretty much more or less demote us as people whenever someone compares us that way. We may not be prime for piloting, I suppose, no. But is there not other areas in which I myself would be "motivated, rested, focused, and happy", more than are yourself?


KAUST
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NW747-400
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 6:55 pm

I'm throwing the BS flag on this one. There is far more to this story than a press release from the pilot's lawyer.
 
Charlienoble
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 9:19 pm

Quoting KAUST (Reply 24):
Disagree, somewhat. As a once "depressed, stressed" person, myself, I can say, it is not always about you, as a "motivated, rested, focused and happy" person. Seems to pretty much more or less demote us as people whenever someone compares us that way. We may not be prime for piloting, I suppose, no. But is there not other areas in which I myself would be "motivated, rested, focused, and happy", more than are yourself?


KAUST


I think you might have missed the point of this. In order to maintain flight status (or succeed in other highly competitive environments) people are forced to maintain the facade that they are "motivated, rested, focused, and happy" at all times, even if it is a lie.

[Edited 2011-09-01 14:29:36]
"When I get sad, I stop being sad and be awesome instead. True Story."- Barney Stinson
 
Stabilator
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 9:34 pm

Quoting xdlx (Reply 13):

I dont think airline management could give a damn about what 91.3 says. It's about dollars (which is justified up to a certain point). However, if safety wasnt his primary concern for diverting, but rather he was "sticking it to the man", he needs to go. People like that give pilots a bad rap and only hinders what shaky relations pilot groups have with management.
So we beat on against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.
 
cbphoto
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 9:35 pm

Quoting CharlieNoble (Reply 26):
Not sure if this was directed toward me...I was trying to say that I would never TELL anyone that I was depressed or stressed. I made that mistake once and paid a pretty high penalty for it!

Better to lie and tell people everything is fine...very few would actually care anyway (and you already know who those people are).


Agree to a point! If your suicidal, then you need help, no matter how much it screws up your career! After all, if your dead, your career is pretty much gone with it! However, i can say going to see a shrink and especially getting anti-anxiety or anti-depression medication will impact your flying career and even disqualify you for a medical cert. If you are going through a rough patch, either work your way out of it, or try to talk to friends and family, before you seek professional help!

Back on topic, I still say there is something big missing from the story line! I am sure ALPA would be throwing a fit right now if this captain was fired with no just cause, what-so-ever!
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longhauler
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 10:01 pm

I am going to play Devil's Advocate here. This gentleman was not "grounded for being too safe".

He was fired for putting safety ahead of cost.

Unfortunately, this is a story heard time and time again among pilots. And it goes back almost to the beginning of commercial aviation. Pilots at smaller carriers are continuously pressured into flying operations that are knowingly less safe than optimum ... but cheaper.

Let's face it, safety is expensive, and in today's narrow margined airlines, competing using the only tool they have, low fares, no longer have the luxury of safety.

There is always a feeling among pilots, that once you get to the major airlines you no longer have to worry. You "survived" the smaller carriers, and bush operations that continuously risk your (and your passenger's) lives and for once, you can act safely without regard to what it will cost.

Some pilots don't make it that far, they are either fired for putting safety first, or they pushed the limits too far and did not survive.

I sincerely hope I am incorrect in my assessment of this story .. either way, this story is not new.
Just because I stopped arguing, doesn't mean I think you are right. It just means I gave up!
 
Goldenshield
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 10:26 pm

Quoting longhauler (Reply 29):
There is always a feeling among pilots, that once you get to the major airlines you no longer have to worry. You "survived" the smaller carriers, and bush operations that continuously risk your (and your passenger's) lives and for once, you can act safely without regard to what it will cost.

And that in and of itself is BS. Even at majors, things like this happen. Take a look at that captain that was suspending/fired/whatever for refusing to fly an airplane earlier this month when the company found it perfectly legal. I'm not favoring the pilot or the company here, but all in all, the PIC may have authority over his airplane, but the company has authority over the pilot's paycheck.
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longhauler
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 11:07 pm

Quoting Goldenshield (Reply 30):
Take a look at that captain that was suspending/fired/whatever for refusing to fly an airplane earlier this month when the company found it perfectly legal.

Which Captain was that?
Just because I stopped arguing, doesn't mean I think you are right. It just means I gave up!
 
Goldenshield
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 11:17 pm

Quoting longhauler (Reply 31):
Which Captain was that?

I've been trying to search for the thread on it, but the search function sucks.

Anyhow, it was a USAirways female captain, who refused an airplane that was due to fly to Europe. Hopefully, that rings a bell.
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flyorski
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Thu Sep 01, 2011 11:41 pm

Quoting Goldenshield (Reply 32):
Anyhow, it was a USAirways female captain, who refused an airplane that was due to fly to Europe. Hopefully, that rings a bell.

I remember reading that thread. Cannot find it right now either. Strangely, google seems to pull up a.net threads better than the terrible built in a.net search engine.
"None are more hopelessly enslaved, than those who falsly believe they are free" -Goethe
 
Mir
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Fri Sep 02, 2011 12:45 am

Quoting cbphoto (Reply 28):
If you are going through a rough patch, either work your way out of it, or try to talk to friends and family, before you seek professional help!

Which is complete BS. Millions of people see a psychologist for help coping with various things and it has no negative impact on their professional lives (in fact, it may have a very positive impact on their professional lives) - why should pilots be any different?

-Mir
7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
 
cbphoto
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Fri Sep 02, 2011 1:05 am

Quoting Mir (Reply 34):
Which is complete BS. Millions of people see a psychologist for help coping with various things and it has no negative impact on their professional lives (in fact, it may have a very positive impact on their professional lives) - why should pilots be any different?

I dunno, ask the FAA! They apparently think/have issues with pilots seeking help. If you have an issue or an incident come up in your flying career, you bet the meeting with the psychologist will come up! I knew a good friend of mine, who at a very young age got professional counseling and was briefly on anti-depression medications. For the past 8+ years, he is still struggling with the FAA, just to obtain a 3rd class medical to start flight training! This psychological stuff is pretty serious in the FAA's eyes! Just recently the FAA encouraged pilots who were "illegally" taking anti-depression medications to come forward to there AME and not get punished for it! The FAA really wants to know how mentally stable you are as a pilot, which I guess might not be a totally bad thing (Egypt Air comes to mind)
ETOPS: Engines Turning or Passengers Swimming
 
FlyHossD
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Fri Sep 02, 2011 1:09 am

Quoting longhauler (Reply 29):

I am going to play Devil's Advocate here. This gentleman was not "grounded for being too safe".

He was fired for putting safety ahead of cost.

Unfortunately, this is a story heard time and time again among pilots. And it goes back almost to the beginning of commercial aviation. Pilots at smaller carriers are continuously pressured into flying operations that are knowingly less safe than optimum ... but cheaper.

Let's face it, safety is expensive, and in today's narrow margined airlines, competing using the only tool they have, low fares, no longer have the luxury of safety.

Brilliantly stated.

I can't help but wonder if there was a recent airline management seminar recommending challenging "safety-calls." There's this story, the USAirways story and at least one other recent event.

I've checked F.A.R. 91.3(a) more than once recently and it places full responsibility on the "Pilot in Command" to ensure the safe operation of the flight. I'm beginning to suspect that some attorney somewhere has therefore decided it's legal to remove the P.I.C. (Captain) from that flight.

These type of actions will have a chilling affect on the safe operation of flights if they're allowed to stand, IMHO. And as I recall, these were the type of incidents that lead to the formation of ALPA. Where is ALPA or USAPA on this? Perhaps the unions are trying to address these issues internally.
My statements do not represent my former employer or my current employer and are my opinions only.
 
Goldenshield
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Fri Sep 02, 2011 1:42 am

Quoting flyhossd (Reply 36):
I've checked F.A.R. 91.3(a) more than once recently and it places full responsibility on the "Pilot in Command" to ensure the safe operation of the flight. I'm beginning to suspect that some attorney somewhere has therefore decided it's legal to remove the P.I.C. (Captain) from that flight.

Part 121 trumps part 91 in this instance.

Both the dispatcher and pilot share joint authority of the flight, but the PIC is in charge of the aircraft.
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FlyHossD
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Fri Sep 02, 2011 2:19 am

Quoting Goldenshield (Reply 37):
Part 121 trumps part 91 in this instance.

That's incorrect, Part 121 does not supercede Part 91. Rather it provides additional "requirements" such as a Dispatcher. Commercial pilots including those conducting Part 121 operations are often held in violation of 91.13 in an incident or accident.

I stand by my original assertion, 91.3 mentions only the "Pilot in Command" as having the "final authority":

Sec. 91.3

Responsibility and authority of the pilot in command.

(a) The pilot in command of an aircraft is directly responsible for, and is the final authority as to, the operation of that aircraft.
(b) In an in-flight emergency requiring immediate action, the pilot in command may deviate from any rule of this part to the extent required to meet that emergency.
(c) Each pilot in command who deviates from a rule under paragraph (b) of this section shall, upon the request of the Administrator, send a written report of that deviation to the Administrator.

[Edited 2011-09-01 19:23:44]
My statements do not represent my former employer or my current employer and are my opinions only.
 
Goldenshield
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Fri Sep 02, 2011 2:34 am

Quoting flyhossd (Reply 38):
That's incorrect, Part 121 does not supercede Part 91. Rather it provides additional "requirements" such as a Dispatcher. Commercial pilots including those conducting Part 121 operations are often held in violation of 91.13 in an incident or accident.

I stand by my original assertion, 91.3 mentions only the "Pilot in Command" as having the "final authority"

You forgot the "of the aircraft" part. Yes, the PIC CAN be violated with 91.3, but they only because they are in charge OF THE AIRCRAFT. Part 91 does not have "flights."

To reiterate, you said this:

Quoting flyhossd (Reply 36):
I've checked F.A.R. 91.3(a) more than once recently and it places full responsibility on the "Pilot in Command" to ensure the safe operation of the flight.


Bolding mine.

Which is wrong, because a part 121 flight is a joint operation, between a dispatcher and pilot.

[Edited 2011-09-01 19:37:06]
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FlyHossD
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Fri Sep 02, 2011 2:43 am

Quoting Goldenshield (Reply 39):
Which is wrong, because a part 121 flight is a joint operation, between a dispatcher and pilot.

Yes, Part 121 includes a Dispatcher (I noted as much - indeed Dispatching was my first airline job). However, the "final authority" rests with the "pilot in command" (91.3 doesn't even mention the Dispatcher's role):

Sec. 91.3

Responsibility and authority of the pilot in command.

(a) The pilot in command of an aircraft is directly responsible for, and is the final authority as to, the operation of that aircraft.
(b) In an in-flight emergency requiring immediate action, the pilot in command may deviate from any rule of this part to the extent required to meet that emergency.
(c) Each pilot in command who deviates from a rule under paragraph (b) of this section shall, upon the request of the Administrator, send a written report of that deviation to the Administrator.

I can recall some "Letters of Investigation" from the F.A.A. to Part 121 pilots that included alleged violations of 91.13. In other words, Part 91 does apply to 121 operations.

You're point about the "operation" of a flight is on target and that's what makes me wonder where the recent attacks on pilot in command authority originate. Did some attorney decide that if we remove the PIC from the operation of the flight, then that authority is moot?

In any case, I'm glad I retired when I did!

[Edited 2011-09-01 19:50:31]

[Edited 2011-09-01 20:03:05]
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Goldenshield
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Fri Sep 02, 2011 2:56 am

Quoting flyhossd (Reply 40):
However, the "final authority" rests with the "pilot in command" (91.3 doesn't even mention the Dispatcher's role):

Sec. 91.3

Responsibility and authority of the pilot in command.

(a) The pilot in command of an aircraft is directly responsible for, and is the final authority as to, the operation of that aircraft.
(b) In an in-flight emergency requiring immediate action, the pilot in command may deviate from any rule of this part to the extent required to meet that emergency.
(c) Each pilot in command who deviates from a rule under paragraph (b) of this section shall, upon the request of the Administrator, send a written report of that deviation to the Administrator.

Stop quoting it. I'm fully aware of 91.3. I'm also fully aware of that the PIC is in full command whether it's part 91, 135, or 121. It's not like I don't fly my own plane or anything.

What' I'm point pointing out here is the mistreatment of the word 'flight.' Not 'aircraft.' Flight. Flight is NOT an aircraft. In the 121 world, the pilot commands the AIRCRAFT, same as part 91 or 135; however, both he and the dispatcher jointly command the FLIGHT.

Anyhow, happy retirement. I'm not too sure where the industry is headed, but you can sit back, relax, and watch the bloodbath..

[Edited 2011-09-01 20:00:16]
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longhauler
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Fri Sep 02, 2011 3:17 am

Quoting Goldenshield (Reply 41):
What' I'm point pointing out here is the mistreatment of the word 'flight.' Not 'aircraft.' Flight. Flight is NOT an aircraft. In the 121 world, the pilot commands the AIRCRAFT, same as part 91 or 135; however, both he and the dispatcher jointly command the FLIGHT.

I am very curious to what you would think the distinction between commanding the aircraft vice commanding the flight might be? If airborne during the "flight", the Captain's and the Dispatcher's opinion differ, who has the final say? (we both know the answer to that).

In Canada (different rules, I understand) there is a "co-dispatch" system. Both the Captain and the Dispatcher have input on the flight. If their opinions differ, the most conservative approach is taken. However ... once the engines start, the Captain is in command and the Dispatcher becomes an "advisor".

I am reminded of the old adage about the bacon and eggs breakfast, and the input of the chicken and the pig. To paraphrase ... the Dispatcher is "involved" the Captain is "committed".

I look back over the decades of airline work I have done, and the dozens of accidents I have investigated and I am reminded of one very simple fact ... we haven't lost a Dispatcher yet.
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aa757first
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Fri Sep 02, 2011 3:24 am

Quoting cbphoto (Reply 35):
I dunno, ask the FAA! They apparently think/have issues with pilots seeking help. If you have an issue or an incident come up in your flying career, you bet the meeting with the psychologist will come up! I knew a good friend of mine, who at a very young age got professional counseling and was briefly on anti-depression medications. For the past 8+ years, he is still struggling with the FAA, just to obtain a 3rd class medical to start flight training! This psychological stuff is pretty serious in the FAA's eyes!

The FAA's draconian policy towards mental health really alarms me. The underlying philosophy seems to be if you're depressed to any extent, you must have suicidal tendencies. I'd much rather have a pilot who took early action to combat his depression than one that's been suffering for years, but too scared to talk to someone about it.

Just to throw something out there, a psychologist MAY be willing to treat you under a pseudonym if you explain why it is necessary. I'd explain the situation. I wouldn't be surprised if a pilot found at least one sympathetic therapist out there. Of course, that would rule out using insurance benefits.
 
Goldenshield
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Fri Sep 02, 2011 3:36 am

Quoting longhauler (Reply 42):
I am very curious to what you would think the distinction between commanding the aircraft vice commanding the flight might be? If airborne during the "flight", the Captain's and the Dispatcher's opinion differ, who has the final say? (we both know the answer to that).

While you are insinuating that PIC would be the one telling the aircraft where to go, which is correct, since the dispatcher isn't there in the plane, if the PIC decides to go against the dispatcher, then he better be on his emergency authority, and have a better reason than the dispatcher to USE that emergency authority.

Even though the majority of what a dispatcher does is an advisory role once the plane is airborne, he still has a say in what the PIC must decide, because it's his ass on the line, too. That's the whole reason behind amending the release: both agree that the flight can be completed SAFELY and WITHIN REGULATION.

Quoting longhauler (Reply 42):
I look back over the decades of airline work I have done, and the dozens of accidents I have investigated and I am reminded of one very simple fact ... we haven't lost a Dispatcher yet.

Perhaps not in Canada, but it has happened in the US, during their FAA required jumpseating.

[Edited 2011-09-01 20:38:34]
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longhauler
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Fri Sep 02, 2011 3:48 am

Quoting Goldenshield (Reply 44):
Perhaps not in Canada, but it has happened in the US, during their FAA required jumpseating.

That is interesting, as in Canada, no one other than a Pilot or Flight Attendant is allowed in a cockpit jumpseat one the engines are started. This is not a rule with which I agree. There are two other airline employee groups I would like to see in the jumpseat for first hand experience. That is Dispatchers and Mechanics.

However. Before September 11, when we did have Dispatchers in the jumpseat for in flight experience. They were not active in the planning of the flight, nor responsible for its operation. The first time they saw the flight plan was usually in Pilot Briefing after it has been printed and after the Captain and the actual Dispatcher working the flight have agreed on its operation.

So in reality, and legally, the Dispatcher observing in the jumpseat is just a passenger. And yes, over the years we have lost a few passengers.
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Goldenshield
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Fri Sep 02, 2011 3:56 am

Quoting longhauler (Reply 45):
So in reality, and legally, the Dispatcher observing in the jumpseat is just a passenger.

In the U.S., anyone riding jumpseat,even if sitting in a passenger seat, once accepted by the captain, they become a crew member and are subject to the same regulations, so no drinking.  

One of my co-workers got hired on at WestJet a while ago, so I'm pondering his take on things.

[Edited 2011-09-01 20:56:31]
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longhauler
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Fri Sep 02, 2011 4:01 am

Quoting Goldenshield (Reply 46):
In the U.S., anyone riding jumpseat,even if sitting in a passenger seat, once accepted by the captain, they become a crew member and are subject to the same regulations, so no drinking.

Absolutely. However, the Dispatcher that worked the flight with the Captain, is not the one riding on the jumpseat. That was the only point I was making.
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Goldenshield
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Fri Sep 02, 2011 4:05 am

Quoting longhauler (Reply 47):
Absolutely. However, the Dispatcher that worked the flight with the Captain, is not the one riding on the jumpseat. That was the only point I was making.

There have been times where I dispatched a flight, and then ended up in the jumpseat on it. Granted, I passed it down, but it's always fun to watch the captain's "Huh?" look. 


This thread needs to get back on track. I haven't had time to read the legal briefing yet, but I'm skeptical anyhow since they are usually one-sided.
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Mir
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RE: Pilot Grounded For Being Too Safe?

Fri Sep 02, 2011 5:29 am

Quoting cbphoto (Reply 35):
The FAA really wants to know how mentally stable you are as a pilot, which I guess might not be a totally bad thing (Egypt Air comes to mind)

Well, someone at the FAA needs to get their head out of the 1960s and realize that seeing a psychologist does not equate to mental instability.

Consider it a form of CRM - if a pilot doesn't know how to deal with a technical problem in flight, would the FAA not find it prudent for him to get a hold of the company's maintenance department on the radio and get the input of someone whose area of expertise is technical issues? So then why would they frown on a pilot going through a divorce (which is not uncommon for pilots) seeking input on how to deal with it from someone whose area of expertise is coping with divorce?

Quoting aa757first (Reply 43):
I'd much rather have a pilot who took early action to combat his depression than one that's been suffering for years, but too scared to talk to someone about it.

  

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