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Posts: 330
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 4:28 am

AA's Cockpit Cam?

Sat Mar 04, 2000 1:04 am

In my last post, called "Why is United the only one with", the second response, from DL_mech, quotes.... "Why did AA get rid of the Cockpit Cam? Was it the ORD DC-10 crash?" What does this mean? Did AA have a cockpit cam? Who watched it, the passengers? Thank you again!
Posts: 197
Joined: Wed Dec 08, 1999 12:48 pm

RE: AA's Cockpit Cam?

Sat Mar 04, 2000 1:10 am

The last time I remember watching the AA cockpit cam was on a DC10-30 from LGW to DFW in 1985.

I really miss listening to the radio conversations on the audio entertainment system on AA.
Posts: 12671
Joined: Thu May 27, 1999 3:30 am

RE: AA's Cockpit Cam?

Sat Mar 04, 2000 5:15 am

Yes, AA used to have a cockpit cam. From what I understand, it was on in the AA191 accident in Chicago, and all of the passengers were able to see the pilots struggling with the controls, and eventually the ground rushing up to meet them. Not a very pleasant though to anyone I would imagine. But, that was in 1979. You say you saw it in 1985? I thought they had rid themselves of the cockpit cam immediately after that accident.

RE: AA's Cockpit Cam?

Sat Mar 04, 2000 5:32 am

They were still using the cockpit cam into the early 1980's. I saw it on a flight to LAX in '82. The picture quality wasn't that good and frankly, I could understand why you wouldn't want passengers to see everything that goes on in there.

They should have cockpit cams that record to the flight data recorder, IMHO.
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Joined: Fri Jan 21, 2000 11:51 am

RE: AA's Cockpit Cam?

Sat Mar 04, 2000 11:50 am

AA DC10 cockpit cameras were operational as late as 1989. Officially they were discontinued to save maintenance costs and (officially) no longer effective marketing tool. Same story told for passenger access to radio transmissions.

Unofficially, I've been told AA simply got tired of the costs involved in being dragged into lawsuits simply because some lawyer heard or saw something on the radio or video. I once had to testify that I put my hat over the cockpit camera on a particular flight so what some lawyer claimed he saw he couldn't possibly have seen (Captain testified he always left the system turned off).

*NO CARRIER* -- A Naval Aviator's worst nightmare!
Posts: 2153
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 8:02 am

RE: AA's Cockpit Cam?

Sat Mar 04, 2000 11:57 am

I have seen the cockpit cameras in use after the ORD crash, but not recently. But it was very hard to see, because the picture was shown on the main cabin screens with all the window shades up. It was almost completely washed out. I haven't seen it used in the last ten years.

Bob Bradley
Richmond, VA
Fly Eastern's Golden Falcon DC-7B
Posts: 253
Joined: Sun Feb 27, 2000 1:34 am

RE: AA's Cockpit Cam?

Sun Mar 05, 2000 1:28 am

From what I heard, AA turned off the cockpit cam after they overran the runway at DFW some time in the mid-80s with a DC10.
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American 767
Posts: 4520
Joined: Wed May 19, 1999 7:27 am

RE: AA's Cockpit Cam?

Sun Mar 05, 2000 9:24 am

Yes I remember that. I had it when I flew on an American DC-10 from Dallas to Boston back in 1988, I could see the cockpit during take off and landing and I could hear live radio conversations like United has on some flights.
Heinz, you are saying that they turned off the cockpit cam after a DC-10 overran the runway in DFW...well, that is not true. The DC-10 aborted take off incident was in May'88 (my father was on that flight, I'm not kidding!!!), I flew from Dallas to Boston in Sep'88 and I still had it. But it its true that they removed the cokpit cameras in the late 80's. I flew in 1989 on a DC-10 from Dallas to Chicago, it was already removed.

Ben Soriano
Brussels Belgium
Ben Soriano

RE: AA's Cockpit Cam?

Sun Mar 05, 2000 2:41 pm

From what I have gotten from pilots is that if the camera was used for information only and could in now way be used against the crews then fine. The minute either the FAA or company start pulling the video to monitor and disciplining flight crews the breaker gets pulled. This would be an example of your boss putting a camera at your desk and recording your every move and then using that information against you (the personal phone calls, non business conversation with coworkers, etc) Remember that the more big brother is allowed to peak in on things the more complicated all our lives get

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