mozart
Topic Author
Posts: 2094
Joined: Thu Aug 14, 2003 12:21 am

Why Is London ATC Said To Be "among The Best"?

Wed Dec 17, 2003 8:10 pm

I often hear that London ATC is among the best in the world. I read it on this forum, but also heard a Lufthansa pilot say that in-flight (when he told us that we were going to hold for some time but that ATC in London is among the best in the world so there would be a chance of this not lasting long).

I imagine that it can be quite a headache handling all that Heathrow traffic on just two runways, but what exactly are the aspects that make people say that London is so good?
 
willo
Posts: 1331
Joined: Fri Dec 12, 2003 10:21 pm

RE: Why Is London ATC Said To Be "among The Best"?

Wed Dec 17, 2003 8:37 pm

Not sure of all the technical reasons, but bear in mind London Terminal Control also looks after flights for LGW, STN, LCY in addition to LHR, all within a fairly small geographical area. It takes some doing.
 
Arsenal@LHR
Posts: 7510
Joined: Tue Mar 20, 2001 2:55 am

RE: Why Is London ATC Said To Be "among The Best"?

Wed Dec 17, 2003 11:24 pm

The skies above London and the south east of England are one of the busiest in the world. If you've ever flown in or out of LHR you will see the amount of aircraft on hold or in stack. It's one hell of a job juggling all that traffic in a pre-defined geographical area.
In Arsene we trust!!
 
mozart
Topic Author
Posts: 2094
Joined: Thu Aug 14, 2003 12:21 am

RE: Why Is London ATC Said To Be "among The Best"?

Wed Dec 17, 2003 11:50 pm

Hmmm, I knew all of that, but then London is a bit like NYC or LAX, plenty of airports, lots of traffic. Still somehow the guys from Southcal or NYC have never been mentioned as being as great as the ones from London. So what is it that makes them so great? Calm? Control? Trying to cut corners? Smart ways to organise traffic?
 
411A
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Joined: Mon Nov 12, 2001 10:34 am

RE: Why Is London ATC Said To Be "among The Best"?

Thu Dec 18, 2003 1:14 am

Having flown into LHR and LGW since 1974, and listened to these guys a LOT, can personally say that they absolutely are NO better than others that control in busy TMA's...AMS and FRA, come to mind in Europe, LAX and DFW in the USA.
You ask the Brits, and they will say LHR is the best.
Consider the source. Insane
 
willo
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Joined: Fri Dec 12, 2003 10:21 pm

RE: Why Is London ATC Said To Be "among The Best"?

Thu Dec 18, 2003 1:31 am

what, the lufthansa pilot?
 
Ejazz
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Joined: Wed May 22, 2002 10:26 am

RE: Why Is London ATC Said To Be "among The Best"?

Thu Dec 18, 2003 1:48 am

I'd put London Heathrow at the top of the best of the ATC league.

Why, because they are so professional, always cool under pressure, use proper RT techniques, appear to understand the capabilities of an aircraft and its crew, and instill confidence in all who come under their control. They are superb and justify their excellent reputation.
Etihad Girl, You're a great way to fly.
 
Arch89U
Posts: 183
Joined: Mon May 28, 2001 11:30 am

RE: Why Is London ATC Said To Be "among The Best"?

Thu Dec 18, 2003 5:52 am

New York Approach has a reputation for being very demanding and not very polite...however, I have always been treated politely by them.

 
Arsenal@LHR
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Joined: Tue Mar 20, 2001 2:55 am

RE: Why Is London ATC Said To Be "among The Best"?

Thu Dec 18, 2003 6:49 am

So what is it that makes them so great? Calm? Control? Trying to cut corners? Smart ways to organise traffic?

Probably all of that, but you'll have to ask pilot's who have flown in and out of London to get a clearer response as to why they're the best.
In Arsene we trust!!
 
Guest

RE: Why Is London ATC Said To Be "among The Best"?

Thu Dec 18, 2003 7:29 am

Just an experience that I had a few years ago with London ATC...

We were preparing to depart from the west coast of the US to fly to Farnsborough. We were given a two-hour ground hold because they didn't want us to arrive during a shift change - they were afraid that one of their controllers might not show up because of the flu. Among the best? I wasn't impressed. Of the many other times that I have flown into the London area they were competent - good, but not outstanding. Personally, I believe that outstanding controllers are where you find them.

Jetguy
 
ba299
Posts: 182
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 9:18 pm

RE: Why Is London ATC Said To Be "among The Best"?

Thu Dec 18, 2003 8:13 am

I fly from-to LHR and LGW all the days. The difference are that they are always calm also during bad weather condition. Very important they say exactly what you have to do. And you don't heard all that noise that you can heard flying to EWR or DFW.
 
bravo45
Posts: 2072
Joined: Sat Sep 22, 2001 5:34 pm

RE: Why Is London ATC Said To Be "among The Best"?

Thu Dec 18, 2003 3:21 pm

Personally, I believe that outstanding controllers are where you find them.
While I would agree to Jetguy completely, I have heard that the German controllers are the best. Don't remember the source but I do believe that the source is a big factor.
 
VSGirl
Posts: 316
Joined: Tue Dec 23, 2003 2:18 am

RE: Why Is London ATC Said To Be "among The Best"?

Sat Dec 27, 2003 6:33 am

I have found and heard that London ATC is one of the best in the world, but I would hope that there is not that much differance for safety sake  Smile

Happy New Year

Kimberly.
 
Air1727
Posts: 318
Joined: Mon Aug 25, 2003 10:57 am

RE: Why Is London ATC Said To Be "among The Best"?

Tue Dec 30, 2003 3:10 am

As always, I agree with 411A completely.
In the Alaska bush I'd rather have a two hour bladder and three hours of gas than vice versa.
 
Santhosh
Posts: 543
Joined: Sun Sep 16, 2001 5:14 am

RE: Why Is London ATC Said To Be "among The Best"?

Tue Dec 30, 2003 3:54 am

They have got Arrivals and Departures every minute of certain periods of the day.So to keep up with the oncomming traffic the ATC must be very very effeciant,to keep the sky safe.So EGLL ATC is one of the best ATC's in the world.

S.K.George
Happy Landings :)
 
EMBQA
Posts: 7800
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 3:52 am

RE: Why Is London ATC Said To Be "among The Best"?

Tue Dec 30, 2003 8:49 am

If you want to see the 'Best in the World', look no further the the North East corridor of the US. BOS-LGA-JFK-EWR.
"It's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog"
 
geotrash
Posts: 293
Joined: Sun Jun 17, 2001 1:25 am

RE: Why Is London ATC Said To Be "among The Best"?

Tue Dec 30, 2003 10:56 am

I think there's something to be said for controllers at a busy GA airport as well, especially on a Saturday afternoon. Juggling 20 or more planes in the Class Delta and on the ground- some singles, some twins, some jets. Touch and gos, full stop landings, practice ILS approaches; it's amazing there aren't more midairs in that environment. Most I've worked with are very good at harnessing the chaos and keeping things flowing, while being courteous. A bad controller really sticks out in such an environment.

The large centers such as London and New York do have the benefit that most of the traffic is comparably well organized IFR. I'm not suggesting that there is an accurate comparison here- it's apples to oranges. I'm simply saying that GA airport controllers also deserve a round of applause for managing mayhem.

Dave

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