sandbender
Posts: 44
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2016 2:05 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Sun Nov 11, 2018 11:04 pm

ual763 wrote:
sandbender wrote:
It's being reported that they were "incapacitated" and are on "administrative leave". That does not sound like hypoglycemia or a stroke.


Are you kidding? It was a medical issue. The ambulance was called. This “administrative leave” you speak of is disability leave.


The original articles I saw made no mention of a medical situation. Various articles are no reporting that medical personal were called to the scene. I was wrong.
 
trnswrld
Posts: 1369
Joined: Sat May 22, 1999 2:19 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Sun Nov 11, 2018 11:14 pm

Not sure if the FAA is gonna try and keep it quiet or what, but this woman is in big trouble....As I mentioned above it was not a stroke and that’s all I would prefer to say. Very sad that someone would put herself in this situation and more importantly the hundreds of life’s that were somewhat in her hands (pilots took it upon themselves to proceed with caution as we heard).
 
sandbender
Posts: 44
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2016 2:05 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Sun Nov 11, 2018 11:17 pm

Jouhou wrote:
sandbender wrote:
It's being reported that they were "incapacitated" and are on "administrative leave". That does not sound like hypoglycemia or a stroke.


Federal employee here, you get put on admin leave when there's an investigation, it's not a sign of actual guilt. If one has done something wrong, that admin leave gets changed to unpaid once the investigation is over.


I had made that assumption based on the fact that no news articles I had seen made any mention of medical personal responding. I see that several now do and my assumption may have been incorrect and premature.
 
Bradin
Posts: 295
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2016 5:12 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Sun Nov 11, 2018 11:28 pm

trnswrld wrote:
Not sure if the FAA is gonna try and keep it quiet or what, but this woman is in big trouble....As I mentioned above it was not a stroke and that’s all I would prefer to say. Very sad that someone would put herself in this situation and more importantly the hundreds of life’s that were somewhat in her hands (pilots took it upon themselves to proceed with caution as we heard).


Enlighten us please on why it wasn't a medical emergency?
 
Grrflyer
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Nov 11, 2018 4:29 pm

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Mon Nov 12, 2018 12:05 am

If you listen to the audio an hour or so before everything went downhill the controller sounded perfectly coherent and in control. You would think if this was an alcohol or drug situation the other controller on duty that was present at the start of her shift would have smelled or noticed something wasnt right well before he took his break.

Back in ''93 I was with my Dad the night he had a stroke. I can't help but see several similarities here as he want from perfectly normal to slightly slurred speech/rambling to something's not quite right to incapacitated over a stretch of about an hour.

Regardless I hope she makes a full recovery. That was tough to listen too.
 
FlyingColours
Posts: 2328
Joined: Fri Dec 26, 2003 3:13 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Mon Nov 12, 2018 6:50 am

I remember a while back seeing a youtube dashcam video where the driver and passenger were having a conversation in which the driver started to stop making sense, he was having a stroke and the passenger realised this and summoned help. I can't help but notice similarities between this and the full ATC audio.

Link it https://youtu.be/bsYJy63gFJc

Phil
FlyingColours
Lifes a train racing towards you, now you can either run away or grab a chair & a beer and watch it come - Phil
 
User avatar
Jouhou
Posts: 1969
Joined: Tue May 24, 2016 4:16 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Mon Nov 12, 2018 9:36 am

trnswrld wrote:
Not sure if the FAA is gonna try and keep it quiet or what, but this woman is in big trouble....As I mentioned above it was not a stroke and that’s all I would prefer to say. Very sad that someone would put herself in this situation and more importantly the hundreds of life’s that were somewhat in her hands (pilots took it upon themselves to proceed with caution as we heard).


The sudden onset would indicate opiates if that is true. I did have a co-worker go on break, come back perfectly fine, but suddenly became unintelligible and collapsed (he had some oxys on break I guess). This was when I worked at a grocery store more than a decade ago, no one's lives were at risk in this scenario!
 
WIederling
Posts: 8887
Joined: Sun Sep 13, 2015 2:15 pm

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Mon Nov 12, 2018 1:27 pm

musman9853 wrote:
sounds like a stroke


IMU symptoms from a stroke "develop".
No in and out as seems to be the case here.
?
Murphy is an optimist
 
National757
Posts: 484
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 3:05 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Mon Nov 12, 2018 7:47 pm

The Las Vegas ABC affiliate and NBC News are reporting separately the controller is no longer employed by the FAA.

-------------------------------------------------------------------
Las Vegas air traffic controller 'incapacitated' no longer employed by FAA
By: Katherine Jarvis, Mahsa Saeidi
Posted: 3:50 PM, Nov 9, 2018
Updated: 2 hours ago

UPDATE NOV. 12: The air traffic controller involved in last week's incident is no longer employed by the FAA, according to a government aviation official.


https://www.ktnv.com/news/mccarran-air- ... le-on-duty
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Officials Probe Why Las Vegas Airport Controller Went Silent
By Ken Ritter
Published Nov 12, 2018 at 7:55 AM | Updated at 8:28 AM EST on Nov 12, 2018

The controller involved in the Las Vegas incident is no longer employed by the FAA, the agency told NBC News Sunday.


https://www.nbcboston.com/news/national ... 70171.html
-------------------------------------------------------------------
 
777PHX
Posts: 962
Joined: Tue Oct 13, 2015 4:36 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Mon Nov 12, 2018 8:30 pm

Grrflyer wrote:
If you listen to the audio an hour or so before everything went downhill the controller sounded perfectly coherent and in control. You would think if this was an alcohol or drug situation the other controller on duty that was present at the start of her shift would have smelled or noticed something wasnt right well before he took his break.

Back in ''93 I was with my Dad the night he had a stroke. I can't help but see several similarities here as he want from perfectly normal to slightly slurred speech/rambling to something's not quite right to incapacitated over a stretch of about an hour.

Regardless I hope she makes a full recovery. That was tough to listen too.


I don't think you realize how quickly a professional alcoholic can get trashed. I have a close family member who is quickly killing herself through alcoholism, she can slam down a fifth of vodka in less than half an hour. She can drink two fifths in a night. These aren't normal social drinkers. And if you look at the facts, it only makes sense. Her coworker goes on break and what does she do? She breaks out the alcohol in the cab because no one else is there.

This isn't a stroke. She was wasted. BAC was .32.
 
User avatar
remcor
Posts: 366
Joined: Thu Feb 16, 2006 9:25 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Mon Nov 12, 2018 10:22 pm

Unfortunately doesn't seem like a medical issue based on this story:
https://www.reviewjournal.com/news/inca ... a-1525525/

I mean at least it seems she didn't suffer a stroke... so yay? :/
 
Arion640
Posts: 2527
Joined: Fri Mar 31, 2017 5:15 pm

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Mon Nov 12, 2018 10:41 pm

Sounds like it could be the same woman who handled the BA engine fire?

https://youtu.be/PU5lvyC4clQ
Lets get Brexit done.
 
spacecadet
Posts: 3490
Joined: Thu Sep 20, 2001 3:36 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Mon Nov 12, 2018 11:36 pm

remcor wrote:
Unfortunately doesn't seem like a medical issue based on this story:
https://www.reviewjournal.com/news/inca ... a-1525525/


Nothing in that story suggests anything one way or another. Some people seem to be taking the fact that she was on leave and now is no longer employed as a sign of guilt. I mentioned in my earlier comment and others have as well that as far as the FAA is concerned, it doesn't really matter why you became incapacitated in terms of whether or not you will be allowed to continue working.

As I said earlier, I don't know the specific rules for controllers but since the FAA regulates both pilots and controllers, I assume they're at least similar to the medical requirements for pilots. And I know that if a pilot suffered an episode like this, *whether or not* it was medical or something self-induced, that pilot would not be flying for the foreseeable future, and probably not ever again. At least not commercially. So it would have actually surprised me, regardless of cause, if this controller was allowed to keep her job given that she's employed directly by the FAA.

As far as I'm concerned, I'm going to assume it's medical until I hear otherwise, because I don't accuse people of being alcoholics or drug addicts without knowing a little more than we know (which is basically nothing).

(Also, FWIW, I enjoy a glass or three of wine every now and again and was also taking opioids for pain after lung surgery about 10 years ago. The way this controller is talking just does not sound like she's under the influence of either alcohol or opioids to me, at least.)
I'm tired of being a wanna-be league bowler. I wanna be a league bowler!
 
Miamiairport
Posts: 251
Joined: Tue Apr 10, 2018 8:14 pm

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Mon Nov 12, 2018 11:41 pm

She sounded very out of it towards the end. This was very scary and could have turned out horribly. I’m surprised it hasn’t become a news item.
 
User avatar
remcor
Posts: 366
Joined: Thu Feb 16, 2006 9:25 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Mon Nov 12, 2018 11:43 pm

777PHX wrote:
This isn't a stroke. She was wasted. BAC was .32.


That's some serious drink. You got that from an inside source?
 
dfwjim1
Posts: 2281
Joined: Fri Sep 09, 2011 8:46 pm

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Mon Nov 12, 2018 11:45 pm

ATCSuggester wrote:
32andBelow wrote:
FLLflyboy wrote:




One thing I will add to those commenting about it: LAS tower is NOT short staffed despite them only having around 30-40 controllers or so. It is one of the most desirable facilities in the FAA to transfer to and work at. They have a line of people waiting to go there that would show up tomorrow if they could. One person mids is a very common setup at most 24/7 facilities around the country excluding certain places (MEM, SDF, IND etc.) And it works very well 99.9% of the time. Unfortunately sometimes crap happens and this is the result.


Curious as to why the LAS tower facility is so popular with ATC folks...
 
User avatar
remcor
Posts: 366
Joined: Thu Feb 16, 2006 9:25 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Mon Nov 12, 2018 11:47 pm

spacecadet wrote:
Nothing in that story suggests anything one way or another. Some people seem to be taking the fact that she was on leave and now is no longer employed as a sign of guilt. I mentioned in my earlier comment and others have as well that as far as the FAA is concerned, it doesn't really matter why you became incapacitated in terms of whether or not you will be allowed to continue working.


Dude, I'm sorry, they wouldn't fire you like a day later if it was a medical problem. What was the exact diagnosis? could it be cured? Can it be treated so that it doesn't reoccur? Could she be put on another assignment, or work in a different part of the FAA, like a local FSDO or whatever. These take more than like 48 hours to answer and no organization would fire you that quick, let alone the federal government.

This was something bad. Sorry but if the news reports are correct and she was fired then I can't see what else other than alcohol/drugs.
 
777PHX
Posts: 962
Joined: Tue Oct 13, 2015 4:36 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 13, 2018 12:26 am

spacecadet wrote:
remcor wrote:
Unfortunately doesn't seem like a medical issue based on this story:
https://www.reviewjournal.com/news/inca ... a-1525525/


Nothing in that story suggests anything one way or another. Some people seem to be taking the fact that she was on leave and now is no longer employed as a sign of guilt. I mentioned in my earlier comment and others have as well that as far as the FAA is concerned, it doesn't really matter why you became incapacitated in terms of whether or not you will be allowed to continue working.

As I said earlier, I don't know the specific rules for controllers but since the FAA regulates both pilots and controllers, I assume they're at least similar to the medical requirements for pilots. And I know that if a pilot suffered an episode like this, *whether or not* it was medical or something self-induced, that pilot would not be flying for the foreseeable future, and probably not ever again. At least not commercially. So it would have actually surprised me, regardless of cause, if this controller was allowed to keep her job given that she's employed directly by the FAA.

As far as I'm concerned, I'm going to assume it's medical until I hear otherwise, because I don't accuse people of being alcoholics or drug addicts without knowing a little more than we know (which is basically nothing).

(Also, FWIW, I enjoy a glass or three of wine every now and again and was also taking opioids for pain after lung surgery about 10 years ago. The way this controller is talking just does not sound like she's under the influence of either alcohol or opioids to me, at least.)


Because of ADA and FMLA, it's damn near impossible to fire someone suffering a non-self inflicted medical condition, let alone terminate her in only a few days time without much time for due process.

She's not on opiates, she's not suffering a stroke, she was drunk off her ass. Why is this so difficult for some of you to believe?

remcor wrote:
This was something bad. Sorry but if the news reports are correct and she was fired then I can't see what else other than alcohol/drugs.


Yeah, again, you don't get fired in two business days' time for having a medical emergency that was outside of your control. She was already on some sort of corrective action plan/probation because of a DUI she had earlier in the year. I suspect that's why she was gone as quick as she was.

remcor wrote:
That's some serious drink. You got that from an inside source?


ATC is a small community, word travels fast.
 
BoeingGuy
Posts: 6313
Joined: Fri Dec 10, 2010 6:01 pm

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 13, 2018 1:03 am

777PHX wrote:
spacecadet wrote:
remcor wrote:
Unfortunately doesn't seem like a medical issue based on this story:
https://www.reviewjournal.com/news/inca ... a-1525525/


Nothing in that story suggests anything one way or another. Some people seem to be taking the fact that she was on leave and now is no longer employed as a sign of guilt. I mentioned in my earlier comment and others have as well that as far as the FAA is concerned, it doesn't really matter why you became incapacitated in terms of whether or not you will be allowed to continue working.

As I said earlier, I don't know the specific rules for controllers but since the FAA regulates both pilots and controllers, I assume they're at least similar to the medical requirements for pilots. And I know that if a pilot suffered an episode like this, *whether or not* it was medical or something self-induced, that pilot would not be flying for the foreseeable future, and probably not ever again. At least not commercially. So it would have actually surprised me, regardless of cause, if this controller was allowed to keep her job given that she's employed directly by the FAA.

As far as I'm concerned, I'm going to assume it's medical until I hear otherwise, because I don't accuse people of being alcoholics or drug addicts without knowing a little more than we know (which is basically nothing).

(Also, FWIW, I enjoy a glass or three of wine every now and again and was also taking opioids for pain after lung surgery about 10 years ago. The way this controller is talking just does not sound like she's under the influence of either alcohol or opioids to me, at least.)


Because of ADA and FMLA, it's damn near impossible to fire someone suffering a non-self inflicted medical condition, let alone terminate her in only a few days time without much time for due process.

She's not on opiates, she's not suffering a stroke, she was drunk off her ass. Why is this so difficult for some of you to believe?

remcor wrote:
This was something bad. Sorry but if the news reports are correct and she was fired then I can't see what else other than alcohol/drugs.


Yeah, again, you don't get fired in two business days' time for having a medical emergency that was outside of your control. She was already on some sort of corrective action plan/probation because of a DUI she had earlier in the year. I suspect that's why she was gone as quick as she was.

remcor wrote:
That's some serious drink. You got that from an inside source?


ATC is a small community, word travels fast.


If what you are saying is correct, then I was wrong in challenging you on it a few days ago. Anecdotal evidence does kind of support it, as others have noted too.

I couldn't imagine being .32 BAC. As much as enjoy a good microbrew, anything over about .08 (e.g. 2-3 beers) and I neither enjoy the feeling or feel well the next day. I don't think I could be conscious at .32.

It's very sad for this woman. If it's true, then she had an illness and threw a good career away.

AFAIK, at my company they'll give you one chance after an alcohol or drug addiction problem at work. Of course I've never tested this policy myself. I believe they give you some time off work; make some help available for you; and you have to take the initiative to follow through and fix the problem. Then you might have continued employment. Of course if the problem continues, then you'll get fired.
 
portcolumbus
Posts: 1659
Joined: Tue Nov 14, 2000 7:10 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 13, 2018 1:24 am

dfwjim1 wrote:
ATCSuggester wrote:
32andBelow wrote:


Curious as to why the LAS tower facility is so popular with ATC folks...



The tower is only 75% staffed, that's even less than the TRACON and we were practically mandatory OT there.
 
jetmatt777
Posts: 3985
Joined: Sun Jun 26, 2005 2:16 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 13, 2018 1:36 am

I was slammed in the other thread (since deleted) that I suggested this was a drug or alcohol problem.

Go figure.

Glad she’s off the scopes, she very well could have killed hundreds the other night.
Lighten up while you still can, don't even try to understand, just find a place to make your stand and take it easy
 
sandbender
Posts: 44
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2016 2:05 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 13, 2018 1:54 am

jetmatt777 wrote:
I was slammed in the other thread (since deleted) that I suggested this was a drug or alcohol problem.


I was as well but I get it to some degree. It was speculation without any hard facts about a potentially career ending incident that also put hundreds of people in danger. We're all curious but that does need to be handled with some degree of caution. There still isn't anything definitive (not knocking 777PHX, just nothing definitive in the media) but the documented circumstantial evidence seems to be pointing in one direction. Shame and I hope the employee gets the help they need no matter the cause.
 
jetmatt777
Posts: 3985
Joined: Sun Jun 26, 2005 2:16 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 13, 2018 2:10 am

sandbender wrote:
jetmatt777 wrote:
I was slammed in the other thread (since deleted) that I suggested this was a drug or alcohol problem.


I was as well but I get it to some degree. It was speculation without any hard facts about a potentially career ending incident that also put hundreds of people in danger. We're all curious but that does need to be handled with some degree of caution. There still isn't anything definitive (not knocking 777PHX, just nothing definitive in the media) but the documented circumstantial evidence seems to be pointing in one direction. Shame and I hope the employee gets the help they need no matter the cause.


Well it’s not like there was no evidence, prior. There’s a half hour of tape that was available to listen to, dealing with many drunk people in my life it sounded like some sort of inebriation to me. Maybe not to others, I get.

I also hope she seeks help, but that doesn’t cure who is at fault here (ultimately the FAA; they demand triple redundancy in aircraft design, and strict rules on air carrier crew requirements but don’t demand the same for their own controllers). At a minimum there should always be 3 people in the cab. 2 controllers and a supervisor.)
Lighten up while you still can, don't even try to understand, just find a place to make your stand and take it easy
 
ATCSuggester
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2013 6:24 pm

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 13, 2018 2:38 am

dfwjim1 wrote:
ATCSuggester wrote:
32andBelow wrote:


Curious as to why the LAS tower facility is so popular with ATC folks...


-Low cost of living/Desirable place to live
-High pay (level 11)
-New facility
-I don't know much about the facility but most high level standalone towers have good morale and are considered 'country club' places to work. Think places such as DFW, IAH, ATL etc.

portcolumbus wrote:
dfwjim1 wrote:
ATCSuggester wrote:


Curious as to why the LAS tower facility is so popular with ATC folks...



The tower is only 75% staffed, that's even less than the TRACON and we were practically mandatory OT there.


I wouldn't call that low staffing though. The national average is only a few percentage points higher. My facility is around ~70% and while having more people would be nice, we don't have to pull the OT list unless several people bang out.
 
portcolumbus
Posts: 1659
Joined: Tue Nov 14, 2000 7:10 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 13, 2018 3:46 am

ATCSuggester wrote:
I wouldn't call that low staffing though. The national average is only a few percentage points higher. My facility is around ~70% and while having more people would be nice, we don't have to pull the OT list unless several people bang out.


Not suggesting it's low, just that it's not the holy grail you think it is and the staffing reflects that. IAH, MSP, DFW, DEN, MCO, PHX to name a few would rank up there, though.

And a 70% facility that can absorb several sick hits before OT? I'm at one of your country club facilities with 94% staffing and spot leave is difficult.
 
ATCSuggester
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2013 6:24 pm

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:14 am

portcolumbus wrote:
ATCSuggester wrote:
I wouldn't call that low staffing though. The national average is only a few percentage points higher. My facility is around ~70% and while having more people would be nice, we don't have to pull the OT list unless several people bang out.


Not suggesting it's low, just that it's not the holy grail you think it is and the staffing reflects that. IAH, MSP, DFW, DEN, MCO, PHX to name a few would rank up there, though.

And a 70% facility that can absorb several sick hits before OT? I'm at one of your country club facilities with 94% staffing and spot leave is difficult.


I work at an up/down and while our staffing percentage is around 70% for CPC's, we count our trainees who are tower rated who have their CIC rating as staffing on the schedule which really helps out with leave etc. In fact, it brings our "staffing" (if you want to call it that with people who are at least somewhat useful) close to 100%.

Going back to the topic, she had to have been on some kind of drugs/alcohol. I mean she was fired right? If it was a stroke or a diabetic issue than her medical clearance would have undoubtedly been pulled but she would still get to keep her job until the condition was brought under control or she went out on a medical retirement, took a staff job etc. Everyone knows how hard it is to get fired in this career field but screwing up on position with drugs and alcohol is a surefire way to do it.

Edited to add: It will be interesting to see if she faces jail time.
 
D L X
Posts: 12515
Joined: Thu May 27, 1999 3:30 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:59 am

I've only seen it reported here on a.net that this was alcohol/drugs. How CERTAIN are we that this was substance abuse on the job?

No shade here. I mean, I don't know ANY of you fools in real life. ;) So, give me some reason to believe you! These are heavy allegations.
 
wjcandee
Posts: 8081
Joined: Mon Jun 05, 2000 12:50 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 13, 2018 6:29 am

D L X wrote:
I've only seen it reported here on a.net that this was alcohol/drugs. How CERTAIN are we that this was substance abuse on the job?

No shade here. I mean, I don't know ANY of you fools in real life. ;) So, give me some reason to believe you! These are heavy allegations.


I think this is as good as it's gonna get. Absent an arrest report in the local jurisdiction, having the media report that the person was terminated (and apparently it was more-immediate than you guys are assuming) means that this employer had to have had rock-solid, indisputable evidence of a self-inflicted disabling event that is an indisputable violation of the rules and policies. Any grey area whatsoever, and the union contract would cause them to go through a kabillion steps to accomplish a termination. Being on probation for a previous violation and then repeating the same type of violation in a massive way would qualify.

I also think that when a respected member who is in the ATC business at first posts that it was not alcohol/drug related, then posts a mea culpa a few days later retracting his earlier post and stating that it was unequivocally not a medical issue, you can take that to the bank.

Since you are not entitled to this employee's personnel records, and the FAA is subject to certain privacy restrictions, and addiction is to some extent an ADA issue, unless there is an arrest or a wrongful-termination suit, I doubt that you would be likely ever to get the official, public detailed confirmation that you seek.

I mean I guess the FAA could do a press release that says, "Our employee was alone in the tower and chose to consume enough alcohol to pump her BAC to .32 in the time it took for the other controller to use up only a portion of his/her break, and because we have no real procedure for pilots to cause someone to check on the controller, it took us a half-hour to finally get someone up there to find her passed out on the floor." But why would they?

It sounds like this is one of those very-rare circumstances in which the reality is so much worse than people's wildest imaginations, it's better off for the employer to just shut up about it.
 
D L X
Posts: 12515
Joined: Thu May 27, 1999 3:30 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 13, 2018 6:58 am

Wjcandee, that’s well and good, but it isn’t enough—not enough that I personally would tell others that this woman got pass-out drunk on the job. Not saying it’s not true, just that I personally don’t have sourceable knowledge of guilt here.

Now what she did is a crime, no? If a police report comes out (or a journalistic report with a named author), obviously that would be something I could feel comfortable repeating.
 
SoCalPilot
Posts: 69
Joined: Fri Mar 17, 2017 4:37 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 13, 2018 8:02 am

D L X wrote:
I've only seen it reported here on a.net that this was alcohol/drugs. How CERTAIN are we that this was substance abuse on the job?

No shade here. I mean, I don't know ANY of you fools in real life. ;) So, give me some reason to believe you! These are heavy allegations.

Saying that it's only been reported on here isnt true.

Theres been several reputable individuals on other aviation sites who work in ATC that have posted information about it being an alcohol issue and not a medical condition.

I'm not sure why people on this site are finding it so hard to believe that it could be alcohol.
 
NW747-400
Posts: 417
Joined: Tue Jun 08, 1999 4:42 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 13, 2018 8:53 am

SoCalPilot wrote:
D L X wrote:
I've only seen it reported here on a.net that this was alcohol/drugs. How CERTAIN are we that this was substance abuse on the job?

No shade here. I mean, I don't know ANY of you fools in real life. ;) So, give me some reason to believe you! These are heavy allegations.

Saying that it's only been reported on here isnt true.

Theres been several reputable individuals on other aviation sites who work in ATC that have posted information about it being an alcohol issue and not a medical condition.

I'm not sure why people on this site are finding it so hard to believe that it could be alcohol.


I don’t think anyone is finding alcohol abuse / dependency hard to believe in this case. In fact alcohol / substance abuse appears to be the most likely scenario. The issue is that no credible information has been made public to actually make that claim. Heresay and gossip from other controllers is not enough evidence to make such allegations.
 
wjcandee
Posts: 8081
Joined: Mon Jun 05, 2000 12:50 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 13, 2018 9:15 am

DLX and NW747: This isn't a court of law, and nobody here is in a position to charge anyone with anything. This is a forum in which information of various levels of probable reliability is shared. I don't know why you would be telling anybody material that "this woman got pass-out drunk on the job", and you are probably correct that you don't have sourceable material to make that accusation. But why would you make any accusation? You're not involved.

What is being discussed here is only what the general belief/understanding is in the controller community and elsewhere as to what happened, and what if anything can be gleaned from the public statements. In other words, as would be the case with any discussion among people who don't have personal knowledge, all you can get is what you got. If the New York Times repeated this same information ("Sources within the FAA say that blah-blah happened."), it wouldn't make it any more true or any more likely to have happened. Only an official statement from the FAA would rise to the level of authority that you are seeking, and I doubt such a statement ever will be forthcoming. Maybe the NTSB decides to take a look at this -- I don't know if it's within their authority to do so given that there was no accident -- but if they do, we're not going to get an official determination for a long time.
 
D L X
Posts: 12515
Joined: Thu May 27, 1999 3:30 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 13, 2018 12:59 pm

wjcandee wrote:
DLX and NW747: This isn't a court of law, and nobody here is in a position to charge anyone with anything. This is a forum in which information of various levels of probable reliability is shared. I don't know why you would be telling anybody material that "this woman got pass-out drunk on the job", and you are probably correct that you don't have sourceable material to make that accusation. But why would you make any accusation? You're not involved.

What is being discussed here is only what the general belief/understanding is in the controller community and elsewhere as to what happened, and what if anything can be gleaned from the public statements. In other words, as would be the case with any discussion among people who don't have personal knowledge, all you can get is what you got. If the New York Times repeated this same information ("Sources within the FAA say that blah-blah happened."), it wouldn't make it any more true or any more likely to have happened. Only an official statement from the FAA would rise to the level of authority that you are seeking, and I doubt such a statement ever will be forthcoming. Maybe the NTSB decides to take a look at this -- I don't know if it's within their authority to do so given that there was no accident -- but if they do, we're not going to get an official determination for a long time.

Wjcandee, it’s not that I find it hard to believe, it’s that a crime has been alleged, and so I personally don’t want to repeat it (outside of a.net) without a report from someone signing their name. Also, it is not true that I’d only accept an FAA statement. There are other sourceable entities, and the NYT citing sources within the FAA is one of them.

Anyway, I stress again that I am not trying to offend the posters here that have said she was drunk. (Unless you think not knowing me is offensive! ;) ) if anything, I was hoping one of these esteemed members was able to flesh out more about how they know.
 
aviationjunky
Posts: 391
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2016 10:27 pm

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 13, 2018 4:06 pm

https://www.reviewjournal.com/news/incapacitated-las-vegas-air-traffic-controller-no-longer-with-faa-1525525/

Didn't see where anyone posted the news that she is no longer with the FAA. Doesn't say if she was fired, or if she quit, but it does say medical was called to the tower.
LAS is Life
 
D L X
Posts: 12515
Joined: Thu May 27, 1999 3:30 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 13, 2018 4:25 pm

aviationjunky wrote:
https://www.reviewjournal.com/news/incapacitated-las-vegas-air-traffic-controller-no-longer-with-faa-1525525/

Didn't see where anyone posted the news that she is no longer with the FAA. Doesn't say if she was fired, or if she quit, but it does say medical was called to the tower.


It has been stated numerous times, and your article in particular has been discussed.
BoeingGuy wrote:
777PHX wrote:
spacecadet wrote:
remcor wrote:
Unfortunately doesn't seem like a medical issue based on this story:
https://www.reviewjournal.com/news/inca ... a-1525525/


Nothing in that story suggests anything one way or another. Some people seem to be taking the fact that she was on leave and now is no longer employed as a sign of guilt. I mentioned in my earlier comment and others have as well that as far as the FAA is concerned, it doesn't really matter why you became incapacitated in terms of whether or not you will be allowed to continue working.

As I said earlier, I don't know the specific rules for controllers but since the FAA regulates both pilots and controllers, I assume they're at least similar to the medical requirements for pilots. And I know that if a pilot suffered an episode like this, *whether or not* it was medical or something self-induced, that pilot would not be flying for the foreseeable future, and probably not ever again. At least not commercially. So it would have actually surprised me, regardless of cause, if this controller was allowed to keep her job given that she's employed directly by the FAA.

As far as I'm concerned, I'm going to assume it's medical until I hear otherwise, because I don't accuse people of being alcoholics or drug addicts without knowing a little more than we know (which is basically nothing).

(Also, FWIW, I enjoy a glass or three of wine every now and again and was also taking opioids for pain after lung surgery about 10 years ago. The way this controller is talking just does not sound like she's under the influence of either alcohol or opioids to me, at least.)


Because of ADA and FMLA, it's damn near impossible to fire someone suffering a non-self inflicted medical condition, let alone terminate her in only a few days time without much time for due process.

She's not on opiates, she's not suffering a stroke, she was drunk off her ass. Why is this so difficult for some of you to believe?

remcor wrote:
This was something bad. Sorry but if the news reports are correct and she was fired then I can't see what else other than alcohol/drugs.


Yeah, again, you don't get fired in two business days' time for having a medical emergency that was outside of your control. She was already on some sort of corrective action plan/probation because of a DUI she had earlier in the year. I suspect that's why she was gone as quick as she was.

remcor wrote:
That's some serious drink. You got that from an inside source?


ATC is a small community, word travels fast.


If what you are saying is correct, then I was wrong in challenging you on it a few days ago. Anecdotal evidence does kind of support it, as others have noted too.

I couldn't imagine being .32 BAC. As much as enjoy a good microbrew, anything over about .08 (e.g. 2-3 beers) and I neither enjoy the feeling or feel well the next day. I don't think I could be conscious at .32.
 
coairman
Posts: 156
Joined: Sun Dec 12, 2010 8:31 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 13, 2018 11:19 pm

I find it frightening that the FAA is not being transparent on the cause of her behavior. I think the flying public has a right to know the truth as thousands of lives were at risk under her guidance.

I also find it amazing as to how many commenters has dismissed her behavior as not related to drugs or alcohol. I listened to most of the tape, and she clearly sounded wasted. She actually sounded like my wife after drinking 1 and 1/2 bottles of wine. The same slurring and mumbling speech. We have a lot of drugs and alcoholism in our country, and she is based in LAS, the land of sin, lots a drinking.....lots of naive people out there. How hard is this scenario so hard to figure out?

I am also am disappointed that not one pilot took charge and called the authorities and or ambulance as soon as possible when they realized she was “out of service “ ....shows such lack of leadership. This is a very disturbing ATC audio indicating a very incoherent controller.
The views I express are of my own, and not the company I work for.
 
tsbooker
Posts: 9
Joined: Thu Jun 21, 2018 7:49 pm

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Wed Nov 14, 2018 12:36 am

Without passing any judgement on the controller, faa, or the pilots I do have one question that I have not seen addressed in this discussion. Why, when it was clearly obvious to the pilots on the frequency that the controller was "disabled", did any aircraft move? Specifically why would a pilot accept a takeoff clearance from her, why would an aircraft cross a runway, why would a pilot do anything besides move to the closest taxiway, stop, announce on frequency where they were, and await further instruction from ATC. Again, without passing judgement or assigning blame to anyone, it seems irresponsible for a PIC to move their aircraft, especially takeoff, knowing that there was clearly something wrong with the controller. Seems to me (armchair pilot) the prudent thing to do would be hold for further information once the situation was sorted out. Glad that all worked out with no one getting hurt, but if there was an incident/accident would a part of the investigation question why planes continued to move?
 
D L X
Posts: 12515
Joined: Thu May 27, 1999 3:30 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Wed Nov 14, 2018 12:42 am

coairman wrote:
I find it frightening that the FAA is not being transparent on the cause of her behavior. I think the flying public has a right to know the truth as thousands of lives were at risk under her guidance.

Per peeve: the public has a right to know very little. The public has a right to be interested though.

coairman wrote:
I also find it amazing as to how many commenters has dismissed her behavior as not related to drugs or alcohol. I listened to most of the tape, and she clearly sounded wasted. She actually sounded like my wife after drinking 1 and 1/2 bottles of wine. The same slurring and mumbling speech. We have a lot of drugs and alcoholism in our country, and she is based in LAS, the land of sin, lots a drinking.....lots of naive people out there. How hard is this scenario so hard to figure out?

Dismissed is the wrong word. And despite your deep knowledge of your wife’s drinking patterns, this woman isn’t your wife. She performed well in the hours before this episode, so if she was wasted, then she got wasted while she was in the tower. That many posters find that less likely to fit the facts than a stroke or a diabetic episode should not surprise.

coairman wrote:
I am also am disappointed that not one pilot took charge and called the authorities and or ambulance as soon as possible when they realized she was “out of service “ ....shows such lack of leadership. This is a very disturbing ATC audio indicating a very incoherent controller.

Not one pilot? How do you know that?
 
User avatar
usxguy
Posts: 1756
Joined: Wed Jan 25, 2006 1:28 pm

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Wed Nov 14, 2018 1:39 am

Its now being reported that she resigned.

https://www.reviewjournal.com/news/las- ... s-1526294/
xx
 
krsw757
Posts: 80
Joined: Mon Aug 08, 2005 12:22 pm

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Wed Nov 14, 2018 2:23 am

coairman wrote:
I find it frightening that the FAA is not being transparent on the cause of her behavior. I think the flying public has a right to know the truth as thousands of lives were at risk under her guidance.

I also find it amazing as to how many commenters has dismissed her behavior as not related to drugs or alcohol. I listened to most of the tape, and she clearly sounded wasted. She actually sounded like my wife after drinking 1 and 1/2 bottles of wine. The same slurring and mumbling speech. We have a lot of drugs and alcoholism in our country, and she is based in LAS, the land of sin, lots a drinking.....lots of naive people out there. How hard is this scenario so hard to figure out?

I am also am disappointed that not one pilot took charge and called the authorities and or ambulance as soon as possible when they realized she was “out of service “ ....shows such lack of leadership. This is a very disturbing ATC audio indicating a very incoherent controller.



I find it frightening/amazing that you’re pretty close to assuming everybody that’s based out of LAS as being drunks and drug abusers.
 
sandbender
Posts: 44
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2016 2:05 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Wed Nov 14, 2018 2:48 am

tsbooker wrote:
Without passing any judgement on the controller, faa, or the pilots I do have one question that I have not seen addressed in this discussion. Why, when it was clearly obvious to the pilots on the frequency that the controller was "disabled", did any aircraft move? Specifically why would a pilot accept a takeoff clearance from her, why would an aircraft cross a runway, why would a pilot do anything besides move to the closest taxiway, stop, announce on frequency where they were, and await further instruction from ATC. Again, without passing judgement or assigning blame to anyone, it seems irresponsible for a PIC to move their aircraft, especially takeoff, knowing that there was clearly something wrong with the controller. Seems to me (armchair pilot) the prudent thing to do would be hold for further information once the situation was sorted out. Glad that all worked out with no one getting hurt, but if there was an incident/accident would a part of the investigation question why planes continued to move?


IANAP but you're assuming that it was immediately clear to everyone. We're listening on computers and already primed to know there's a problem. We're not sitting in a cockpit managing an aircraft. It was obvious as it went on that the PICs started to realized there was a problem, but not all at once and that's important. It seemed to me that the aircraft on the ground clued in faster than the ones on approach (and started trying to alert inbound aircraft). But that presents the PIC with a difficult choice, if you choose to stop following directions and other aircraft continue to then you're an unaccounted for obstruction... with a ATC who is having problems keeping their own directions straight. If you're parked somewhere out of the way great, stay that way. But if you're taxiing or landing, deviating could be worse than trying to follow instructions. There's no clear solution here other than try to get outside help ASAP (which several of the PICs apparently did by radioing their company... we're not privy to when that started and what was exchanged).

The whole system (including communications) is setup to assume the person in the tower is the person in charge and the only person in charge. It does not account for free-lancing, nor should it.
 
User avatar
atcsundevil
Moderator
Posts: 3647
Joined: Sat Mar 20, 2010 12:22 pm

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Wed Nov 14, 2018 3:15 am

coairman wrote:
I find it frightening that the FAA is not being transparent on the cause of her behavior. I think the flying public has a right to know the truth as thousands of lives were at risk under her guidance.

I haven't chimed in on this yet given the lack of evidence and abundance of rumor, but this post of yours has quite a lot to unpack.

There will certainly be an investigation, but ultimately this is an administrative matter, so the controller has a right to privacy. This is the case in the public or private sector, so this should be no exception. Another user said that the public doesn't have the right to be fully informed, and I would agree. The public would have a right to know if a systemic safety issue existed, but this is most certainly an isolated incident. I'm not saying the public shouldn't know, but I am saying that the public shouldn't be informed until an investigation has been competed.

coairman wrote:
I also find it amazing as to how many commenters has dismissed her behavior as not related to drugs or alcohol. I listened to most of the tape, and she clearly sounded wasted. She actually sounded like my wife after drinking 1 and 1/2 bottles of wine. The same slurring and mumbling speech. We have a lot of drugs and alcoholism in our country, and she is based in LAS, the land of sin, lots a drinking.....lots of naive people out there. How hard is this scenario so hard to figure out?

I mean no offense by this, but are you medically qualified to distinguish the difference between someone who is intoxicated and someone having a CVA/TIA? I'm a former paramedic, and my first instinct from hearing the tapes was that she was having a stroke. I don't think most people without medical backgrounds could differentiate the two with such certainty. Whether that was the case or not, it's a pretty bold assertion to say that she "clearly sounded wasted" in the absence of publicly available evidence. Unless you have the medical background to speak from experience, I don't believe you should be accusing people of being naïve.

coairman wrote:
I am also am disappointed that not one pilot took charge and called the authorities and or ambulance as soon as possible when they realized she was “out of service “ ....shows such lack of leadership. This is a very disturbing ATC audio indicating a very incoherent controller.

Firstly, this was a very unusual situation. I'm not aware of any part of the FAR/AIM that recommends a course of action if a controller becomes incapacitated. Secondly, most of these aircraft were on the ground. Granted I don't work in a tower, but there isn't a huge level of urgency when it comes to taxiing. Yes, runway crossing clearances can be dangerous, but pilots always check to ensure the runway is clear before crossing. My point is that there are times when pilots fail, and there are times when controllers fail, but safeguards exist which nearly always prevent both from failing. It would appear that many of the pilots were attempting to contact company or the ramp to advise them of the situation, which is really all that could realistically be done. If your expectation of leadership would have been for one of them to step up and start issuing control instructions, that's not realistic.

usxguy wrote:
Its now being reported that she resigned.

https://www.reviewjournal.com/news/las- ... s-1526294/

Absolutely. The folks who thought she'd been terminated give way too much credit to the government, because things just don't move that fast! Presumably she was in a resign or eventually be fired situation, but being fired for cause is a very lengthy process.

I lament the fact that this situation has brought this woman's career to a very abrupt and public end. Regardless of whether the situation was of her own making or not, I don't think most people realize the effort and sacrifice that the career requires. Ultimately, this isn't the way that anyone wants or imagines their career coming to an end. I am not excusing her actions if this was of her own making, but it's still a sad situation nonetheless.
 
coairman
Posts: 156
Joined: Sun Dec 12, 2010 8:31 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Wed Nov 14, 2018 3:43 am

krsw757 wrote:
coairman wrote:
I find it frightening that the FAA is not being transparent on the cause of her behavior. I think the flying public has a right to know the truth as thousands of lives were at risk under her guidance.

I also find it amazing as to how many commenters has dismissed her behavior as not related to drugs or alcohol. I listened to most of the tape, and she clearly sounded wasted. She actually sounded like my wife after drinking 1 and 1/2 bottles of wine. The same slurring and mumbling speech. We have a lot of drugs and alcoholism in our country, and she is based in LAS, the land of sin, lots a drinking.....lots of naive people out there. How hard is this scenario so hard to figure out?

I am also am disappointed that not one pilot took charge and called the authorities and or ambulance as soon as possible when they realized she was “out of service “ ....shows such lack of leadership. This is a very disturbing ATC audio indicating a very incoherent controller.



I find it frightening/amazing that you’re pretty close to assuming everybody that’s based out of LAS as being drunks and drug abusers.


I really didn’t mean to imply that “everyone” in LAS is a gambler and drinker.....just implying that it’s the hedonism capital of the USA in terms of its gambling image and everything that goes along with the gambling industry like drinking. Gambling and drinking are very common traits that go hand in hand with many people from my observations with my gambling friends.
The views I express are of my own, and not the company I work for.
 
32andBelow
Posts: 4046
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2012 2:54 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Wed Nov 14, 2018 4:47 am

NW747-400 wrote:
SoCalPilot wrote:
D L X wrote:
I've only seen it reported here on a.net that this was alcohol/drugs. How CERTAIN are we that this was substance abuse on the job?

No shade here. I mean, I don't know ANY of you fools in real life. ;) So, give me some reason to believe you! These are heavy allegations.

Saying that it's only been reported on here isnt true.

Theres been several reputable individuals on other aviation sites who work in ATC that have posted information about it being an alcohol issue and not a medical condition.

I'm not sure why people on this site are finding it so hard to believe that it could be alcohol.


I don’t think anyone is finding alcohol abuse / dependency hard to believe in this case. In fact alcohol / substance abuse appears to be the most likely scenario. The issue is that no credible information has been made public to actually make that claim. Heresay and gossip from other controllers is not enough evidence to make such allegations.

It’s pretty hard to be immediately fired from a government job. Even if she got a dui she wouldn’t be fired by now.
 
estorilm
Posts: 743
Joined: Fri Jan 16, 2009 3:07 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Wed Nov 14, 2018 1:27 pm

32andBelow wrote:
NW747-400 wrote:
SoCalPilot wrote:
Saying that it's only been reported on here isnt true.

Theres been several reputable individuals on other aviation sites who work in ATC that have posted information about it being an alcohol issue and not a medical condition.

I'm not sure why people on this site are finding it so hard to believe that it could be alcohol.


I don’t think anyone is finding alcohol abuse / dependency hard to believe in this case. In fact alcohol / substance abuse appears to be the most likely scenario. The issue is that no credible information has been made public to actually make that claim. Heresay and gossip from other controllers is not enough evidence to make such allegations.

It’s pretty hard to be immediately fired from a government job. Even if she got a dui she wouldn’t be fired by now.

I heard stroke - again as others have mentioned, towards the end of the recording you can hear her coughing and struggling, and yeah it did get worse quickly.
 
AbigailWT
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Jun 10, 2018 11:23 pm

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Wed Nov 14, 2018 1:55 pm

tldr version of this thread:

bunch of people think she WAS drunk with zero evidence to substantiate it with

bunch of people think she WASN'T drunk with zero evidence to substantiate it with

mass speculation inclusive of personal anecdotes and "{insert someone of supposed prominence here} told me blahblahblah". infighting ensues.

Highlight reel goes to the arbitrary yet specific blood alcohol content thrown out of thin air. Classic.

A.net.... keepin' it klassy. with a k.
Last edited by AbigailWT on Wed Nov 14, 2018 2:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
User avatar
cougar15
Posts: 1417
Joined: Thu Sep 05, 2013 6:10 pm

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Wed Nov 14, 2018 2:10 pm

atcsundevil wrote:
coairman wrote:
I find it frightening that the FAA is not being transparent on the cause of her behavior. I think the flying public has a right to know the truth as thousands of lives were at risk under her guidance.

I haven't chimed in on this yet given the lack of evidence and abundance of rumor, but this post of yours has quite a lot to unpack.

There will certainly be an investigation, but ultimately this is an administrative matter, so the controller has a right to privacy. This is the case in the public or private sector, so this should be no exception. Another user said that the public doesn't have the right to be fully informed, and I would agree. The public would have a right to know if a systemic safety issue existed, but this is most certainly an isolated incident. I'm not saying the public shouldn't know, but I am saying that the public shouldn't be informed until an investigation has been competed.

coairman wrote:
I also find it amazing as to how many commenters has dismissed her behavior as not related to drugs or alcohol. I listened to most of the tape, and she clearly sounded wasted. She actually sounded like my wife after drinking 1 and 1/2 bottles of wine. The same slurring and mumbling speech. We have a lot of drugs and alcoholism in our country, and she is based in LAS, the land of sin, lots a drinking.....lots of naive people out there. How hard is this scenario so hard to figure out?

I mean no offense by this, but are you medically qualified to distinguish the difference between someone who is intoxicated and someone having a CVA/TIA? I'm a former paramedic, and my first instinct from hearing the tapes was that she was having a stroke. I don't think most people without medical backgrounds could differentiate the two with such certainty. Whether that was the case or not, it's a pretty bold assertion to say that she "clearly sounded wasted" in the absence of publicly available evidence. Unless you have the medical background to speak from experience, I don't believe you should be accusing people of being naïve.

coairman wrote:
I am also am disappointed that not one pilot took charge and called the authorities and or ambulance as soon as possible when they realized she was “out of service “ ....shows such lack of leadership. This is a very disturbing ATC audio indicating a very incoherent controller.

Firstly, this was a very unusual situation. I'm not aware of any part of the FAR/AIM that recommends a course of action if a controller becomes incapacitated. Secondly, most of these aircraft were on the ground. Granted I don't work in a tower, but there isn't a huge level of urgency when it comes to taxiing. Yes, runway crossing clearances can be dangerous, but pilots always check to ensure the runway is clear before crossing. My point is that there are times when pilots fail, and there are times when controllers fail, but safeguards exist which nearly always prevent both from failing. It would appear that many of the pilots were attempting to contact company or the ramp to advise them of the situation, which is really all that could realistically be done. If your expectation of leadership would have been for one of them to step up and start issuing control instructions, that's not realistic.

usxguy wrote:
Its now being reported that she resigned.

https://www.reviewjournal.com/news/las- ... s-1526294/

Absolutely. The folks who thought she'd been terminated give way too much credit to the government, because things just don't move that fast! Presumably she was in a resign or eventually be fired situation, but being fired for cause is a very lengthy process.

I lament the fact that this situation has brought this woman's career to a very abrupt and public end. Regardless of whether the situation was of her own making or not, I don't think most people realize the effort and sacrifice that the career requires. Ultimately, this isn't the way that anyone wants or imagines their career coming to an end. I am not excusing her actions if this was of her own making, but it's still a sad situation nonetheless.



Thank you, one of the few reasonable posts in this opinionated, impatient and know it all all armchair CEO environment! Sadly they may just know nothing...…...!
some you lose, others you can´t win!
 
SWADawg
Posts: 536
Joined: Tue Dec 03, 2013 6:43 pm

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Wed Nov 14, 2018 3:09 pm

IF she was drunk, I’d be interested to know if she could be facing jail time. In my mind, it’s no different than a pilot operating a flight while intoxicated and then being tested and arrested when the crew gets to their destination like the Northwest Airlines crew in the early 90’s that operated a flight with an FAA inspector onboard. In that case, the entire crew went to prison. There was also an America West crew that was prosecuted for operating a flight about ten years ago as well. Any of our controller friends know what FAA policy is about this?
My posts are my opinion only and do not reflect the views of Southwest Airlines
 
User avatar
atcsundevil
Moderator
Posts: 3647
Joined: Sat Mar 20, 2010 12:22 pm

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Wed Nov 14, 2018 6:21 pm

SWADawg wrote:
IF she was drunk, I’d be interested to know if she could be facing jail time. In my mind, it’s no different than a pilot operating a flight while intoxicated and then being tested and arrested when the crew gets to their destination like the Northwest Airlines crew in the early 90’s that operated a flight with an FAA inspector onboard. In that case, the entire crew went to prison. There was also an America West crew that was prosecuted for operating a flight about ten years ago as well. Any of our controller friends know what FAA policy is about this?

I know of controllers who have been disciplined and/or terminated, but I'm not aware of them ever having been prosecuted for it. Not to say it hasn't, I've just never heard of it. I would assume that there would generally only be a referral for prosecution if an incident or accident resulted. Termination or forced resignation is generally enough of a punishment.
 
User avatar
remcor
Posts: 366
Joined: Thu Feb 16, 2006 9:25 am

Re: FAA Makes Staffing Policy Changes After Vegas Controller Found Incapacitated

Tue Nov 20, 2018 5:03 am

One thing I would disagree with is that there is no evidence. There is not complete evidence but there is evidence. There’s the tape and there’s the important fact that only 2-3 days after the incident she is “no longer working at the FAA”.

We should be careful about speculation, but this thread initially was sure that she had suffered a stroke or a medical emergency. That is also speculation.

So if we’re going to speculate on a medical problem I think it’s also entirely reasonable to speculate that it was misconduct. And weighing the evidence, I would say there’s more evidence (though not at all conclusive) that this was due to misconduct. That evidence, namely, is the fact that she was either terminated or resigned 2 days after the incident - this does not make sense to me if one suffered a severe medical issue.
Last edited by remcor on Tue Nov 20, 2018 5:33 am, edited 1 time in total.

Popular Searches On Airliners.net

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos