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AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Tue Mar 20, 2007 11:42 pm

 
PanAm747
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Tue Mar 20, 2007 11:48 pm

As I recall, several times Delta pilots flying ATL-NRT or ATL-ICN (I can't remember) stopped in PDX because they felt unable to properly fly the airplane. IIRC, this is one of the reasons the rest rule became important with Delta pilots.

As for the other airlines, I am all for them trying to save money, but one area that should NEVER be touched is crew fatigue. To me, this is a safety issue that should be discussed - try and find the balance between economics and ensuring a rested and therefore more alert flight crew.
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EWRCabincrew
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Tue Mar 20, 2007 11:52 pm

I may be wrong here, but it is not about the flight time and crew rest, but the rest once you get there and when you get back to base (at least with CO).
You can't cure stupid
 
lowrider
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Tue Mar 20, 2007 11:55 pm

It has been well proven that fatgued pilots are not safe. We don't need to reinvent the wheel here. The only cure for fatigue is rest. The 121 rest rules need to be re-written with consideration given to circadian rhythms and the effects of crossing 5+ timezones in the space of a single flight.
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panamair
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Tue Mar 20, 2007 11:55 pm

Quoting EWRCabincrew (Reply 2):
I may be wrong here, but it is not about the flight time and crew rest, but the rest once you get there and when you get back to base (at least with CO).

No, you're right..it's about the length of the layover. DL agreed to the FAA rules for its JFK-BOM flight and hence the 4 pilots per flight get a 48 hour layover in BOM; FAs get 24 hours.

Don't know about the pilots, but the DL FAs are also not allowed (more of an internal DL rule I believe) to work any flight for 50+ hours after a JFK-BOM roundtrip.

[Edited 2007-03-20 17:06:59]

[Edited 2007-03-20 17:07:59]
 
ikramerica
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 12:01 am

If the FAA also mandates that the pilots must stay in their rooms and actually rest, I'm all for it.

But if it just means a longer time in the destination which leaves time for drinking and staying out all night, I can see how the "counterproductive" argument might hold some weight.

So for you pilots: if you had 48 hours, how would you spend it? Resting or filled with activity...
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
 
Cory6188
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 12:03 am

I read the article, and it noted how one of the possible additional requirements might be to give crews an extra day off after a long international flight. Apparently, AA and CO have claimed that this would be "counterproductive". What's their rationale on this one? Do crews get more out of whack with time zones the longer that they stay at their destination? Does this hinder them in flight?
 
highflyer9790
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 12:04 am

Crunching the rest time is not good....pilots need to be alert at all periods of the flight. will nay other airlines besides AA and CO oppose this?
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 12:05 am

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 5):
If the FAA also mandates that the pilots must stay in their rooms and actually rest, I'm all for it.

Great point.

Aren't most of these long flights such as NYC-CHINA flown with 2 sets of pilots anyway? I don't see how flying 8 hours and then spending the other half in the crew rest would warrant a 48 hour layover.

Safety is paramount though.
 
EWRCabincrew
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 12:15 am

Quoting Cory6188 (Reply 6):
Apparently, AA and CO have claimed that this would be "counterproductive". What's their rationale on this one?

It makes the trip less productive because of the down day at the destination. Example: our flight attendants get a 4 or 5 day trip to HKG (it goes a 4 day this summer because it will go daily (right now it operates 6 days a week)). Our pilots have a 14 hour (or so) layover. The 3 day or more productive than a 4 or 5 day trip.

Quoting Cory6188 (Reply 6):
Do crews get more out of whack with time zones the longer that they stay at their destination? Does this hinder them in flight?

The same questions also apply to cabin crew, but we aren't as strictly governed by FAA rules as pilots are. To answer your question it is a person by person difference. The latter question deals with longer crew rest periods since the flights would be generally longer.
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CALMSP
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 12:24 am

i've been on a flight that had a duty day upwards of 24 hours back in 2005........but we had 4 pilots, so each pilot had ample rest time in the bunks.

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 5):

I couldnt agree more. everyone knows you wont sit in your hotel room and rest for such a long period, everyone wants to go out and explore some, have some drinks, nice dinner some place...
 
ikramerica
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 12:39 am

Quoting CALMSP (Reply 10):
I couldnt agree more. everyone knows you wont sit in your hotel room and rest for such a long period, everyone wants to go out and explore some, have some drinks, nice dinner some place...

I'm not great with jetlag, but I know that that first day, I'm dead. I sleep when I have to, not when the sun sets, etc. So I would assume that if you only had 24 hours, you'd basically get a lot of sleep and not adjust much, and then go back on duty.

But if you had 48 hours, you'd try to adjust, and see things, and screw up your clock, and then get back on the plane and fly and be off balance back in the USA. There is a strong argument for counterproductivity here.

I think it really needs to be studied which is better. But so far, AA and CO have had no accidents on any of these flights, right? So unless someone thinks it's a "ticking time bomb" or something, why make the change? Just because DL voluntarily did so?
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
 
bingo
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 1:23 am

Quoting Cory6188 (Reply 6):
Do crews get more out of whack with time zones the longer that they stay at their destination?

My experience has been the least amount of time on the ground to adjust the less trouble I had. I was flying DCA-EWR-MAD-AGP on a Saturday afternoon (arrive Sunday about noon) Return Monday at about 430pm in time to catch the train home. I stayed awake til about midnight sunday (their time). I'd wake up about 4am to catch my flight. By the time I got stateside, I was pretty much still on EST. Of course I guess this depends on the person. With my line of work, I'm use to going long stretches without sleep.
 
flydreamliner
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 1:33 am

It is important to remember that the airlines care about safety too.... nothing hurts their bottom line like a crash blamed on the airline. My guess is that CO and AA aren't just thinking of cost savings, and that there is validity to their notion that spending too much time at the destination is counterproductive... I can completely the see the argument that a 48 hour turn around messes up your internal clock far more than a 24 hour.
"Let the world change you, and you can change the world"
 
AJMIA
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 3:48 am

On another thread last month there was a discussion that AA might pull off ORD-DEL.

I have heard that currently the route is OK, but if pilot rest time has to be increased to two days that might change the economics of the route and cause it to be cancelled.

AJMIA
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worldtraveler
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 4:37 am

The primary direct increased costs are in hotel and per diem costs but it does mean that airlines will have to have more 777 pilots which does increase costs some.

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 5):
So for you pilots: if you had 48 hours, how would you spend it? Resting or filled with activity...

Keep in mind that pilots flying these routes are probably in their upper 50s for captains and upper 40s for co-pilots. I suspect many pilots would just as soon not have the extra time but many will probably use it for studying… or they will bring their significant other along.

Quoting Cory6188 (Reply 6):
Do crews get more out of whack with time zones the longer that they stay at their destination?



There IS some evidence that people do react less to time zone differences if they return to their original time zone fairly quickly; adding 24 hrs to a 10 time zone difference doesn’t provide enough time for real adjustment. Also, pilots on these flights for all US airlines, I believe, do get lie-flat crew rest accommodations.

DL had some crew issues as it transitioned to a full lie flat crew rest cabin which it did not provide for the first few years of its 777 operation. It had them on the MD-11 but they took up so much cabin space that the company tried to shrink the space which the pilots did not like.

The issue does need to be studied but it is pretty doubtful that the FAA will accept the status quo as acceptable given that the 777 and the 787 are/will be capable of flights approaching or exceeding 18 hrs. Whether 24 hrs of extra rest really helps will remain to be studied but the risk of fatigue certainly does grow as flight lengths increase and because flights of this length operate across nighttime in both directions.
 
Curmudgeon
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 4:37 am

I personally find 24 hours off to be counter to common sense. 48 hrs off is even worse. When you arrive tired, 12 hours or so allows a cocktail, a snack, then sleep. What's the point of hanging around getting adjusted to the strange time zone, then going to the airport tired 12 hours after waking up?

The problem of course is that almost all ultra long haul carriers will have at best one flight a day, so its going to be 24 hours off. 24 off means arriving beat, but staying up for a long time (usually drinking), then trying to get 12 hours in the cot, waking up a few hours before flight, arriving at the airport to fly at your normal bed time.

None of this applies in Paris, Rome or New York where typically 6 or 7 days off is needed for complete safety.  Smile
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worldtraveler
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 6:36 am

those who say there is no need for a change in rules because AA and CO have had no accidents are using the same logic that people accuse the Fes of using when it comes to transportation safety.

there is plenty of evidence that crew fatigue occurs on long haul flights. if adding extra layover time isn't the answer then these airlines that are objecting best come up w/ a proposal rather quickly to address crew fatigue issues.
 
MCOflyer
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 6:44 am

I think its good to have rest, but is 5 days needed for HKG?

MCOflyer
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ikramerica
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 9:12 am

Quoting WorldTraveler (Reply 17):
there is plenty of evidence that crew fatigue occurs on long haul flights. if adding extra layover time isn't the answer then these airlines that are objecting best come up w/ a proposal rather quickly to address crew fatigue issues.

Spoken like a true advocate of the airline who changed their rest and thus it must be the right thing to do.

Your points are fine, but you don't provide any evidence that 48 hours is the answer, only that "fatigue is a problem" that must be solved.

Very true. On the longest flights, put on 5 pilots? Then again, we know the planes can basically fly with zero pilots anyway, so why exactly do we even need 4? Are 5 somewhat tired pilots better than 4 somewhat tired pilots when the need for even 2 is in case one dies?
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 10:00 am

Well spoken Ikramerica.

Can Delta do no wrong when it comes to WorldTraveler?  biggrin 
 
VHXLR8
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 10:21 am

Quoting MCOflyer (Reply 18):
I think its good to have rest, but is 5 days needed for HKG?

5 days would be the TOTAL trip duration. From leaving your home, to gettin back there. So after you include 1 day for the westbound flight (thanks to time differences) and 2 days for the return sector; that only leavs two days actually in HKG.

Similarly, most of QF's LAX trips from Australia are 4 day duties; although that only includes ONE actual night in LAX.

Quoting Curmudgeon (Reply 16):
I personally find 24 hours off to be counter to common sense. 48 hrs off is even worse. When you arrive tired, 12 hours or so allows a cocktail, a snack, then sleep. What's the point of hanging around getting adjusted to the strange time zone, then going to the airport tired 12 hours after waking up?

The problem of course is that almost all ultra long haul carriers will have at best one flight a day, so its going to be 24 hours off. 24 off means arriving beat, but staying up for a long time (usually drinking), then trying to get 12 hours in the cot, waking up a few hours before flight, arriving at the airport to fly at your normal bed time.

12 hours rest for long haul international flying is out of the question. That's less rest than what most people get (considering a 9-5 style regime). 24 hours is acceptable for medium haul international flights. Whilst, for ultra long haul (AUS-USA etc), 36 hours is the minimum. Remembering also that a lot of time can also be taken getting to-from airports and hotels; 24 or 36 hours gives a suitable amount of time to perhaps socialise with others, eat, relax, sleep, possibly exercise of some sort; and finally prepare for, and then return to the airport refreshed and ready to fly home.
 
trex8
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 10:25 am

there was a letter in AWST recently about cruise pilots being used on long haul flights, IIRC it seemed like a CO pilot moaning about the concept. I have heard of some airlines having cruise captains. what do they do, monitor the controls and "captain the ship" during the cruise but they are only FO when its time to land???
 
VEEREF
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 10:25 am

48 hours is alot better than 24. In fact, 24 hours is probably the worst possible amount of time.

That means my next duty period will be exactly on the opposite side of the clock as the previous period.

I can't believe some of the posts I am reading here. Alot of folks have got "sleep" majorly confused with "rest".
To even suggest confining a crew to their hotel rooms during rest periods is idiotic, at best. We are people, not animals.
Those who have never walked in those shoes have made yourselves obvious.

Not a single aircraft has ever crashed due to it's crew getting plenty of rest. The opposite is well documented.
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SansVGs
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 10:29 am

There have been several NASA studies concluding pilot fatigue is extremely dangerous. Fatigue is cited in many NTSB investigations. One study found that a pilot is 25 times more likely to make a major mistake when on duty for more than 12 hours.

Solutions for long haul are debated. Many think a 36 hour RON is actually worse than a 24 hour RON. But ask any pilot, and they will tell you more rest time equals better / safer. Also rest is not just lounging in bed snoozing or flipping channels. Rest can be taking a walk through a local park, or getting a good work-out, or having an actual sit down / respectable meal--Anything away from the flight deck that returns the body to "normal."
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VEEREF
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 10:30 am

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 5):
So for you pilots: if you had 48 hours, how would you spend it? Resting or filled with activity...



Quoting Style (Reply 8):
Great point.

Aren't most of these long flights such as NYC-CHINA flown with 2 sets of pilots anyway? I don't see how flying 8 hours and then spending the other half in the crew rest would warrant a 48 hour layover.

Safety is paramount though.

And in both of your extensive years of experience in crewing international flights, you are certainly qualified to decide how much rest crews get, and what they do with it.

Oh, wait........
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artsyman
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 10:35 am

This potential change is also less productive for the pilots, not just the airlines. The pilot who is forced to sit an extra days in a foreign city is not being paid to sit there, he only gets paid for his taxi and flight time. These things are a balance, and despite the comments on a few on here, the few pilots I mentioned this to today (all longhaul at CO) were not pro the longer rest period based mainly on the pay issue. They commented that sometimes a few hours longer would be nice, but that an extra 24 etc seems excessive
 
SansVGs
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 10:43 am

Artsyman, You make a good point about the pilot pay. I think people incorrectly assume that pilots are getting paid to be tourists. May I suggest that you expand your survey outside of CO, and you may get very different data / opinions.
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VHXLR8
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 10:43 am

Quoting Artsyman (Reply 26):
The pilot who is forced to sit an extra days in a foreign city is not being paid to sit there, he only gets paid for his taxi and flight time

Aircrew get paid allowances whilst on layovers.
 
SansVGs
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 10:50 am

Quoting VHXLR8 (Reply 28):
Aircrew get paid allowances whilst on layovers.

Long Haul pilots getting paid 200000 plus USD per year do not view the 70 to 80 USD per Diem and a "free" night in some hotel as reasonable compensation for a day of their time in another country away from their families. The money is usually easily spent in a couple of meals in expensive hotels in expensive cities. If they are asking for more rest they are willing to lose cash to get it.
Winglets on a Falcon are "over-painting" a great work of art.
 
worldtraveler
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 10:52 am

I always love it when the experts show up and start debunking the childish thoughts of the amateurs on here. Of course fatigue is a problem. It's a problem for airlines and its a problem for the trucking industry and it's a problem for railroads. DO we just stick our heads in the sand and say that because we don't understand everything about it, we just leave things alone and let accidents happen (on trucks and railroads) while convincing ourselves that it will never happen on airliners? NO WAY. History shows that business rarely embraces safety unless outside forces make it necessary for them to do so.

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 19):
On the longest flights, put on 5 pilots?

you're the one that thinks 5 pilots is the answer. common sense and the experts will tell you that it isn't necessary to continue to throw bodies at the problem if you instead provide the resources necessary for the current workforce to safely and productively do their job.

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 19):
you don't provide any evidence that 48 hours is the answer, only that "fatigue is a problem" that must be solved.

but you haven't shown that 24 hrs is acceptable... and lots of evidence DOES exist that fatigue is a MAJOR issue on long-haul aircraft, esp. when night flying is involved.

thankfully, people like you don't have any say-so in the flight safety process and there are people with good common sense that do. The fact that DL happened to be the first to do it simply says that they were willing to agree that there is the potential for a problem and take conservative approach. Denying that there is a problem or refusing to work with the safety regulators who are there to advance the industry only invites disaster and leaves the company vulnerable in the event something did happen. The fact that DL puts restrictions on its FAs despite no requirements from the FAA says that they would rather be safe than sorry.
 
VEEREF
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 10:55 am

36 hours for me is ideal. 12 hours is not enough because the time spent in customs, travel to the hotel, back to the airport and through security, quite often you are left with 7-8 hours at the hotel. Not enough for adequate rest.
24 hours is a bad number becasue it puts your duty periods exactly opposite sides of the clock from the previous flight.
36 is optimal for me as it allows for transit to the hotel, exercise, a decent meal and adequate opportunity for sleep when PHYSIOLOGY dictates it, not some clock on crew scheduling's office wall 6 thousand miles away.
48 hours + might get expensive, as you are making only per diem at this point, but any physiological effects at this point are now controllable.

[Edited 2007-03-21 04:04:41]
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VHXLR8
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 10:59 am

Quoting SansVGs (Reply 29):
Long Haul pilots getting paid 200000 plus USD per year do not view the 70 to 80 USD per Diem and a "free" night in some hotel as reasonable compensation for a day of their time in another country away from their families.

I wasn't commenting on what certain pilots might or might not view as reasonable compensation, but rather merely pointing out that they DO get some form of allowance whilst on layovers. As for exactly what different airlines offer, I'm not sure; but I know that some airlines do in fact give very generous allowances that make up for time away. But it's always going to be different for different individuals with varying priorities.
 
SansVGs
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 11:12 am

VHXLR8,

Thanks for the clarification. I didn't mean to sound snippy. I was just trying to get a point across to previous posters that you obviously understand.

VEEREF,

Amusing description of scheduling. I see it is the same everywhere.
Winglets on a Falcon are "over-painting" a great work of art.
 
VHXLR8
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 11:35 am

Quoting SansVGs (Reply 33):
Thanks for the clarification. I didn't mean to sound snippy. I was just trying to get a point across to previous posters that you obviously understand.

Hey, it's all good mate. It can be difficult sometimes getting points across in a forum where you have people who know the industry and people who don't. Cheers mate  Smile
 
PhilSquares
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 11:50 am

Sorry, but I just couldn't bite my tongue any longer.

As usual, this board is full of "experts" who's only experience with any form of long haul flying is a trip longer than 1 hour our perhaps a mid-contintnet to the coast flight where two time zone difference gives them a real taste of jet lag.

Having flown long haul for the majority of my commercial career, I can say it's the worst part of the job! There's nothing like flying from Asia to LHR where you're off your normal time zone by 8 hours and then trying to get some sleep when your body is fighting to stay awake.

Anyone who is of the opinion that one can simply get to the hotel, go to bed and get a restful 6-8 hours of sleep doesn't know what they're talking about. The FARs are just simply out dated and don't really deal with ULH flying. They deal with double crew flights well enough, since they mandate the rest period after you get back to base, but they don't handle the enroute rest requirements very well.

Personally, 24 hours doesn't really do it. By the time you add transport time to and from the hotel, post flight duties, CIQ (outbound and inbound), reporting time, you have at the most 21 hours off duty. You need time to unwind and relax, grab a decent meal, do some exercise and then try to sleep. Of course everyone knows that the crews are always put on "quiet" floors where they/re not disturbed by housekeeping during the day.......(if you believe that, I have a deal for you). So during the day, when the rest of the world is up, trying to get some quality rest can be difficult. I wish I had a dollar (insert currency unit) for every time housekeeping knocked or opened my door when the "Do Not Disturb" sign was on the door. Quite simply in a 36-48 hour layover, I'm lucky if I get a quality 6-7 hours of sleep. It's just an occupational hazard and you learn to cope. However, that doesn't t mean I shouldn't be given the opportunity to rest.

NASA has done countless studies of fatigue on long haul flights and the results are scary. My own airline has pioneered the ULH flying and crew rest, not only at the layover but mandated breaks in flight, and they have made considerable efforts to ensure the crew are rested.

As someone pointed out earlier, companies don't realistically make significant safety improvements unless they're required to do so. Now, this can be through regulatory means or through collective bargaining agreements. It really makes no difference, the fact remains, it does take some prodding to get things changed.
Fly fast, live slow
 
style
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 12:10 pm

Quoting VEEREF (Reply 25):
And in both of your extensive years of experience in crewing international flights, you are certainly qualified to decide how much rest crews get, and what they do with it.

Oh, wait........

This is a DISCUSSION FORUM. Obviously when you signed up you must have mistaken it for something else. Again, a 15 hour flight with 2 different sets of pilots for 7.5 hours of flying each along with crew rest on the plane and a 24 hour crew rest time seems adequate to me. I agree with CO and AA on this one. Thats my opinion and if you wish to disagree by all means do so, doesn't mean you have to parade around with sarcastic comments.

Quoting WorldTraveler (Reply 30):
The fact that DL puts restrictions on its FAs despite no requirements from the FAA says that they would rather be safe than sorry.

WT, you seem to be the go to person on DL. What restrictions does DL have for theirs FA's?
 
wjcandee
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 12:29 pm

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 5):
So for you pilots: if you had 48 hours, how would you spend it? Resting or filled with activity...

Hmmmm....drop by Spondivits by the ATL airport any night of the week at 3:45 a.m. and you'll have your answer to the question of how at least some laying-over pilots will be spending their time. (Of course, there are plenty of "slam-clickers" in the ranks, but the mere fact that that term is a perceived as a little derogatory is itself revealing.)  Wink
 
itsnotfinals
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 12:30 pm

Quoting Style (Reply 36):
This is a DISCUSSION FORUM. Obviously when you signed up you must have mistaken it for something else. Again, a 15 hour flight with 2 different sets of pilots for 7.5 hours of flying each along with crew rest on the plane and a 24 hour crew rest time seems adequate to me.

Thank goodness you are just "discussing" and not setting the rules.

When I read Airliners.net it is to learn from others who have "been there done that".


Phil Squares is a long haul pilot, so are a few others on here. expert. Period.

cheers

[Edited 2007-03-21 05:35:09]
Speedbird 178 Heavy, FINAL runway 27L
 
PhilSquares
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 12:38 pm

Quoting Style (Reply 36):
This is a DISCUSSION FORUM. Obviously when you signed up you must have mistaken it for something else. Again, a 15 hour flight with 2 different sets of pilots for 7.5 hours of flying each along with crew rest on the plane and a 24 hour crew rest time seems adequate to me. I agree with CO and AA on this one. Thats my opinion and if you wish to disagree by all means do so, doesn't mean you have to parade around with sarcastic comments.

Again, as you point out this is a discussion forum (and you don't have to shout by using upper case!), you oversimplify the issue. You make it sound as if the pilots get a full 7+ hours of rest. Well, generally speaking, one if not are in the cockpit for takeoff through about level off or so, there's about 30 minutes used. The CO flight EWR-DEL departs EWR at 2045 so, depending on how CO does it's double crew flights, the off duty or the augmenting crew will get some fairly decent rest for a period of about 6-6.5 hours. Then the other crew gets into the bunk but they will generally try to unwind a little by having a meal or watching a movie first. But then, they'll be out of the bunk at the top of descent, so there's another 30 minutes off the rest. To say you consider the rest adequate, is indicative of your experience with the problem.

Now we're in DEL. Arrival is at 2015L or 1445Z or 0935L EST. By the time you're at the hotel and in your room, it's now 2115L but your body is on east coast time and it's time to wake up. Your chances of getting any meaningful rest is somewhere between slim and none! I don't know how many times I've done but watch CNN for several hours just hoping to fall asleep.

I'm sorry but unless you've done a trip like this, remember this isn't a really long trip only 14 hours block EWR-DEL, you just don't understand the issues. Your statement really underscores the misunderstandings and oversimplifications most people make while discussing long haul flying.

[Edited 2007-03-21 05:44:28]
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SansVGs
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 12:44 pm

Quoting Style (Reply 36):
Again, a 15 hour flight with 2 different sets of pilots for 7.5 hours of flying each along with crew rest on the plane and a 24 hour crew rest time seems adequate to me. I agree with CO and AA on this one.

Style,

Respectfully, you are suggesting that you would wish to be in the back of a plane making an approach (at a congested airport in bad weather) with a pilot who has been in the air 30 of the last 54 hours?

I hope the next time I have to commute back from "the other end" I have VEEREF or Phil Squares driving.

Best
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panamair
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 1:03 pm

Quoting Style (Reply 36):

WT, you seem to be the go to person on DL. What restrictions does DL have for theirs FA's?

I'm not WT but see Reply 4; DL FAs get a 24 hour layover but cannot fly for 50+ hours after returning from an ULH like BOM-JFK.

Quoting Artsyman (Reply 26):
They commented that sometimes a few hours longer would be nice, but that an extra 24 etc seems excessive



Quoting VEEREF (Reply 31):
36 hours for me is ideal. 12 hours is not enough because the time spent in customs, travel to the hotel, back to the airport and through security, quite often you are left with 7-8 hours at the hotel. Not enough for adequate rest.
24 hours is a bad number becasue it puts your duty periods exactly opposite sides of the clock from the previous flight.
36 is optimal for me as it allows for transit to the hotel, exercise, a decent meal and adequate opportunity for sleep when PHYSIOLOGY dictates it, not some clock on crew scheduling's office wall 6 thousand miles away.
48 hours + might get expensive, as you are making only per diem at this point, but any physiological effects at this point are now controllable.

Problem is, on many of these routes/flights, there isn't much of a choice here as the flights affected (like CO's EWR-HKG/DEL/BOM or DL's JFK-BOM) are either daily or almost daily - so the return is either in 24 or 48 hours....
 
DCrawley
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 2:17 pm

Quoting Style (Reply 36):

This is a DISCUSSION FORUM. Obviously when you signed up you must have mistaken it for something else. Again, a 15 hour flight with 2 different sets of pilots for 7.5 hours of flying each along with crew rest on the plane and a 24 hour crew rest time seems adequate to me. I agree with CO and AA on this one. Thats my opinion and if you wish to disagree by all means do so, doesn't mean you have to parade around with sarcastic comments.

You are correct it is a discussion forum. Feel free to have an opinion about whatever you like, I will respect it. However, PLEASE make sure that you have an informed opinion.

To help you out on this, I suggest you read up on this topic:

http://human-factors.arc.nasa.gov/zteam/

http://asrs.arc.nasa.gov/report_sets_nf.htm

http://human-factors.arc.nasa.gov/zteam/fcp/FCP.pubs.html

If you need any help, people here would be more than happy.

Safe flying.
"Weather at our destination is 50 degrees with some broken clouds, but they'll try to have them fixed before we arrive."
 
VEEREF
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 8:03 pm

Quoting Panamair (Reply 41):
Problem is, on many of these routes/flights, there isn't much of a choice here as the flights affected (like CO's EWR-HKG/DEL/BOM or DL's JFK-BOM) are either daily or almost daily - so the return is either in 24 or 48 hours....

This is true. That being the case, the 48 hour downtime would be the only truly safe option, if a physiologically well rested crew is the goal for the return trip.
Airplanes are cool. Aviation sucks.
 
MCOflyer
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 8:20 pm

Forgive my previous post. Longer layovers are better.

Philsquares and VEEREF,

Glad to see your points of view as you guys are pilots and what you're talking about.

MCOflyer
Never be afraid to stand up for who you are.
 
VEEREF
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 8:26 pm

Quoting Style (Reply 36):
This is a DISCUSSION FORUM. Obviously when you signed up you must have mistaken it for something else. Again, a 15 hour flight with 2 different sets of pilots for 7.5 hours of flying each along with crew rest on the plane and a 24 hour crew rest time seems adequate to me. I agree with CO and AA on this one. Thats my opinion and if you wish to disagree by all means do so, doesn't mean you have to parade around with sarcastic comments.
You are right, this is a discussion forum. My quotes in that post should have been more specific. Everyone is entitled to opinion.
But to suggest an FAA regulation to require crews to remain in a hotel room for the duration of a layover is absurd.
If I arrive at the hotel on the other side of the world from my own time zone, and am wide awake, what good will it do me to toss and turn in my bed if I'm not physiologically ready for sleep?
If I want to go down to the restaurant and have a drink and a snack when I arrive, as long as I am in compliance with FAR's and my company's policy, why shouldn't I be able to? Or if I want to go get a workout or walk around the area?
I personally don't drink on the road, but a good workout or walk helps to unwind and makes it easier to get quality sleep when the time comes.

Sleeping in a closet on the airplane might seem like acceptable rest, but really all it does is satisfy a page in a book in an office in downtown Washington DC. I have done it a few times and usually end up tossing and turning or getting broken sleep, and arrive at the destination as tired as I would had I stayed in the seat.


As I and others who do this on a regular basis have pointed out, there is a difference between "sleep" and "rest".

[Edited 2007-03-21 13:29:11]
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Starlionblue
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 8:57 pm

Quoting Style (Reply 36):
Again, a 15 hour flight with 2 different sets of pilots for 7.5 hours of flying each along with crew rest on the plane and a 24 hour crew rest time seems adequate to me. I agree with CO and AA on this one.

I may not be a pilot, but I have done dozens of transatlantic trips, often four days long, sometimes 2 days long, sometimes followed directly by a US transcon trip. So even if I don't have to fly the plane, I do have some inkling of what pilots go through.

- People react differently to jetlag. Personally, I am most tired on the second day. My wife hardly feels jetlag at all, even 8-9 hours of time difference. Your results may vary and so will those of pilots.
- Some people are able to use mild sedatives like Melatonin. I am one of these. Some people get nightmares from them. In any case I think employers should respect the unwillingness of some people to ingest something like that. So that's out.
- A crew rest on the plane does offer rest, but from experience flying F I imagine that it's not even close to a quiet hotel room. And a quiet hotel room is not my own bed.
- Jetlag induced fatigue is often hard to self-diagnose. That is, one might not even be aware of it until colleagues remark that one is both snippy and slow. This is not a huge deal for me, but for a pilot operating an aircraft I can imagine it would be an issue.
- The quickest way to get over jetlag is to adapt to local time as soon as possible. I do this even if I am only in a location for a couple of days.

In my humble opinion, 48 hours after something like ORD-DEL is probably the minimum. 24 hours is not enough.



On a related note, I believe the UK CAA allows micronaps in cruise. I think that sounds like a grand idea. I would rather the pilots on my plane get a quick 20 minute nap in their seat during cruise than fall asleep on approach. But that's just my opinion.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
757Driver
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 10:15 pm

Quoting Style (Reply 8):

"Aren't most of these long flights such as NYC-CHINA flown with 2 sets of pilots anyway? I don't see how flying 8 hours and then spending the other half in the crew rest would warrant a 48 hour layover."

It's not about an 8 hour flying day...It's more about a 16 hours flying day. You can not shift your circadian rhythm in just 24 hours once at the destination. Sleep deprivation is cumulative. If you do not get enough rest to recover from the flight over, you will be rest deprived for the return flight, hence the Delta crew stopping in PDX. When you return, It takes more than 24 hours to regain the lost rest and to return your circadian rhythm to normal.

I understand the airlines hesitance to the new rule. It would increase the required crew per aircraft. Ultimately, I think the airlines and crews need to work together to find a solution that upholds safety and keep added cost to a minimum.
 
MaverickM11
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 10:31 pm

Quoting FlyDreamliner (Reply 13):
It is important to remember that the airlines care about safety too.... nothing hurts their bottom line like a crash blamed on the airline

Exactly, airlines can't afford to be even perceived as unsafe. And I've long lost faith in unions to actually support "safety"; it seems that at least 50% of the time when something is demanded in the name of "safety", it's just a cover for something else that has nothing to do with safety. Same goes for "national security/terrorism", and "the children". This is not to say that fatigue isn't a problem--it's a huge problem not just in cockpits but everywhere. Americans simply don't sleep enough or properly, but I'm skeptical that increasing the rest time will have beneficial effects.
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FlyHoss
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RE: AA And CO Remain Firm On Pilot Rest Rules

Wed Mar 21, 2007 10:46 pm

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 19):
Then again, we know the planes can basically fly with zero pilots anyway, so why exactly do we even need 4? Are 5 somewhat tired pilots better than 4 somewhat tired pilots when the need for even 2 is in case one dies?

Have you seen this thread?

CO 777 Aborts Takeoff At EWR (by ABQ757 Mar 20 2007 in Civil Aviation)

"...we know the planes can basically fly with zero pilots anyway..."

So, this was an "auto-abort," eh?


Granted, modern airliners are more automated than ever before, but I have yet to see the computer that can make all the decisions necessary for a safe flight.

One more thing, the automation sometimes fails, too. Usually, it's a software problem or conflict and not a hardware issue, but again, I have yet to see a perfect computer. In other words, you want - and need - an experienced, qualified, alert crew at the helm.

[Edited 2007-03-21 15:53:01]
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