View Full Version : Departure without cabin crew - true?
16th Sep 2009, 19:31
in his book "Human factors in flight" Frank Hawkings mentions an incident on a revenue flight where, after reaching cruising altitude, "... the pilot discovered that he had left his cabin crew behind at the airport." He gives the Flight Safety Foundation as a source (FSF (1984) Preflight crew briefings: a step towards improved communication. FSF, Cabin Crew Safety Bulletin, 19, 3).
Unfortunately, I am unable to locate that document. Does anyone know whether this story is actually true - it sounds incredible! And is anyone in posession of this bulletin, as it is generally a very interesting topic?
17th Sep 2009, 00:27
One is bound to wonder who gave the captain the " all doors closed" and "cabin secure" information then, (they both appear on checklists).:confused:
(Not to mention how the pilots went from boarding to TOC without at least two teas/coffees;)).
17th Sep 2009, 03:32
I was thinking exactly the same. If it wasn't quoted from a well known aviation safety organization's publication by a well-known human factors expert, I wouldn't even start to believe it. But, as things are ...
18th Sep 2009, 12:43
This edition of the Cabin Crew Safety Bulletin is not available on the FSF homepage, but maybe you could the FSF for a copy.
Query mentions case from mid-1980's, and asks for verification:
"... the pilot discovered that he had left his cabin crew behind at the airport."
This case was taught regularly during recurrent training. Since FSF publications mostly avoided mention of operator (airline), it would be difficult to now find specific airline/date. Unless a passenger reported the case to the press, there might be no newspaper story available (online-newspaper search yield NO press stories on this case).
During the '80's there were various reporting systems aside from ASRS (eg, BASIS, and other company-based compilations of incident-reports). The current ASRS online-report library does NOT include any such case from 1982-1985. The old ASRS hardcopy "report-sets" (eg, Cabin Safety ASRS reports, or ASRS' CRM pilot-reports) covering the years '83 & '84, might include the specific ASRS report (details-deleted to protect the reporter/airline).
Another tactic might be to search for the origin of the CHECKLIST's "Cabin Ready" report from the "A"-Stew' (or Purser or Lead FA) to the pilots. This requirement was added sometime about the '80s or '90's. Also, there was an added requirement for FA's to be onboard an airliner PRIOR to boarding pax.
I suspect there were multiple such incidents of a narrowbody airliner departing with no FA's -- picture a hub, late-flights, pilots rushing to next outbound aircraft, agents (dressed-up to appear similar to FAs) pressed by manager to complete "boarding" and then the AGENT closes the L-1 Door as usual, maybe an OAL uniformed FA riding as passenger, rushed pilots finish Before Start Check and look back to see all passengers seated and Overhead Bins CLOSED, pilots check for all DOORs CLOSED indication, then pilots pull the Cockpit Door CLOSED and request PUSHBACK clearance.
18th Sep 2009, 20:41
One is bound to wonder who gave the captain the " all doors closed" and "cabin secure" information then, (they both appear on checklists).http://images.ibsrv.net/ibsrv/res/src:www.pprune.org/get/images/smilies/confused.gif
Careful, Pb, that's a very specific statement and one that is just plain wrong!
It may be so in your airline...but that doesn't make it a universal fact.
I've never seen either in a checklist pre-takeoff in any of the 5 airlines I've worked for.
19th Sep 2009, 03:11
Well I have flown four types of Boeing and one BAC and it was definitely in all of them! (and saying "they both appear on checklists" isn't very specific at all, is it?).
I recall a 'story' about a flight that taxied off stand without c/crew and went back to pick them up, but I have not heard about anyone getting airborne - sounds most unlikely.
Never mind 'checklists' - what about commonsense, or is that now a dead topic?
22nd Sep 2009, 11:39
I recall a 'story' of an aircraft that started its pushback with a ground handler still on board. The guy panicked and pushed open a passenger door - which by that time had already been armed... :ouch:
3rd Oct 2009, 08:13
That's tame stuff really.
Try this on for size.
A ME "flag carrier" crew were due to depart on an internal flight. The f/o asked the Captain for the weather brief. The Capt declined the request and there was a resulting punch up in the galley in full view of the pax. The aircraft departed for it's destination, minus the f/o who had been thrown off by the Captain. Just to clarify, there was one pilot in the cockpit for the duration flight.
That airline is now part of star alliance. :}
3rd Oct 2009, 08:51
Back in the mid-80s was it even common practice to confirm cabin secure?
I have direct knowledge of ac when the pilots have not called 'seats for landing' and cabin crew have still been standing on touchdown - so no 'cabin secure' check there then.
I read an ASRS report where the aircraft returned to the gate for a tech problem. Captain told everyone to stay on board. One of the cabin crew stepped off to make a phone call and when she got back the aircraft had departed. Even her fellow cabin crew did not notice her missing until TOC.
At least 2 UK aircraft have taxied with baggage handlers still in the hold. First was spotted when cabin crew reported banging coming from under the cabin floor during taxi. On the second occasion, ATC called up and suggested that the aircraft return to stand - ground handling company reported 2 handlers missing.