ATC IssuesA place where pilots may enter the 'lions den' that is Air Traffic Control in complete safety and find out the answers to all those obscure topics which you always wanted to know the answer to but were afraid to ask.
I've just been a bit surprised. In the space of one hour I've witnessed two instances where pilots operating under a speed restriction and having been told to report speed to London on xxx.xx failed to do so. Maybe I'm naive, one attitude might be 'well these things happen' but the problem was in both cases that the speed control applied was being used to provide separation against other a/c. In one case the receiving controller mistakenly perceived a failure to ensure separation and issued avoiding action. My problem is not actually only with these two instances but with all the other times that I've told a/c to report their speeds and they haven't done it. (Sort of explains some of the strained relations between AC and TC that sometimes occur doesn't it). Nonetheless please pilots if you are instructed to report your speed to the next frequency, it's not 'just' a legal requirement, but actually it's important as well, your separation is probably based on it. Please report everything you're asked too.
For heavens' sake stop whingeing about how hard your job is and how hard pilots make your job unnecessarily. Whilst some may simply fail to report speed control through sheer laziness or lack of professionalism, such cases are, in my experience, extremely rare.
Yes, there are some pilots whose R/T is bad. There are some whose R/T is good, and whose airmanship good.
Similarly, there are competent ATCers and appalling ones everywhere.
Most of your job is based around communicating with us. Most of our job is NOT centred around communicating with you. Get used to it.
Our priotities are:-[list=1][*]Aviate[*]Navigate[*]Communicate[/list=a]So you come bottom of our list of priorities, along with talking to the other pilot, and just above talking to the cabin crew and then passengers. If you happen to catch us at a rather busy time (which descent and approach IS), then we can forget things. So you have to issue extra separation instructions. Whoopee. Better safe than sorry, certainly. And sorry for the extra workload. But it happens.
We're all working to the same aim. We're on the same team. So it doesn't do much good always to point the finger and blame others on your team. Appreciate that we have higher priorities than talking to you.
Aviate... doesn't the plane do that? Navigate... doesn't the Autopilot do that?
However, now I understand why pilots are so well paid. They have a very stressful job, all those buttons and screens, whereas ATCOs only have one screen, a big one though. ATCOs have many planes to deal with, waterlevel rising dangerously close to nose level, but this is nothing compared to what pilots have to put up with of course...
Only a couple? Hmmmm... that will really give you a good perspective!
How often for me? At least once at every airport I've been based, many airports I've merely visited, and for some units many times.
And since you chose to miss the point I made totally, I was pointing out that we have different priorities than you. It's not wrong, it's just the way things are. I know of no pilot who would either deliberately or carelessly omit a deyail he was asked to pass on to the next unit. But these things get missed. There's no point whingeing about it.
If you're still worried, you should know that, when flying as a line training captain, I and all other line trainers I have flown with keep an ear open to the R/T procedure of the pilot undergoing check. We're not perfect. We make no claim to be perfect. Nor are you. Get used to it.
Nice way to work with others. Sounds rather professional too about "get used to it."
I hate to say it, but if you hold us at a rather low priority, then you don't care much for your life. Do we both have jobs to do? Yup, sure do. Part of your job is to fly your aircraft. Part of that flying is to listen and "comply" with ATC instructions. The life you save could be your own.
We in the US have been having a very hard time the last couple of years with poor R/T from the pilot side. Wish that I had the reason as to why. But we see pilots NOT listening to the radio and then no using readbacks nor even call signs. This leads to incidents and more workload on both of our parts. I say both because if I don't get a read back, a call sign OR have to call you more than one time then I am going to have to do it again, and now your sequence may not have been what it was. Not stated as any sort of threat either. It just means that in 20 to 30 seconds the traffic picture changes and now what would work, doesn't anymore.
Before you go on, I have been on MANY jumpseats, I also help with the folks who teach jet drivers and also have some of my own jet time. You see, I too have a license to do what you do... It isn't that hard. For more complex and faster aircraft there are two or sometimes three folks up there. There are also systems that help you manage the aircraft. We normally have one or two of us downstairs and no systems to help us manage things. You also go by the procedure of pilot flying and pilot not flying. The person on the radio is the pilot NOT flying at most airlines and corporate shops. So please, when someone trys to point out a problem that we have take it as a professional and see if it applies to your flight deck. If not, wonderful... If it does, take it and learn from it...
Scott I have seen it from both sides, as a controller first and as an airline pilot now. I do heed what you and other controllers say, but you really don't know whats going on up there until you are doing the flying. In the JS means little. Systems management is alot of what we do, but don't think it simplifies things terribly much. I find its easier for me to kick off the autopilot and stay ahead of the plane/ATC/wx, etc. Mutual respect is what makes the system work, but lets not forget that you guys are down there because we are up here, not the other way around.
Oh dear. Let's try and find some common ground. The overiding priority for both Pilots and ATCO's is flight safety. This can only be achieved through co-operation and mutual respect from ALL parties involved. I am saddened by some of the arrogant and provocative comments on this thread made by those from either profession.
Leave Huggy alone!!! He is a pilot and therefore a member of the master race!!(yeah right)I have scarcley seen such arrogance from someone when a perfectly civilised request was made.Of course pilots are busy but so too are atco's.The oft made comment that we are here because you are there is not to appreciate that the business of moving people and freight around the sky is a TEAM game and realistically if the punters weren't there NONE of us would be required . We have a duty of care to the people who put their faith in the aircrew,engineers,atco's, support staff in fact all involved in getting them from A to B safely and expeditiously .If you are asked to report a speed it is part of that duty of care to comply .Atco's invariably know the big picture Huggys'invariably DON'T so do as you are asked and we will all be able to make the system run as it should for the benefit of the people who ultimately pay our salary!
Slightly off topic I know, but it has been mentioned in a couple of posts above. As far as I understand it, ALL fam flights were stopped in the aftermath of September 11 for obvious reasons. Does anybody know if and when such opportunities will be reopened? Sure, they don't prevent such differences of opinion as those above, but they are better than nothing!!!
spekesoftly - thanks for that. At last a rather more rational response.
As I have tried many times to point out, no pilots that I know deliberately fails to follow ATC instructions. We are (frequently painfully) aware that you guys are there to help us. As I have also said, we are not perfect, make no claim to be so, but most pilots take a pride in what they do, and make an effort continuously to improve.
Pointing out that when ATC ask for speed control, or heading, or whatever to be reported to the next sector on 1xx.xx means that we are required to do so is less than helpful.
As I said, and speke softly also says, we are all part of the same team, with the same aim - to get the aircraft to their destinations safely, legally and expeditiously. You have pressure on you which many pilots don't appreciate. We also have different ressures on us, which most ATCOs don't appreciate.
As soon as you start to think your job is getting us down, and that our job is to do what you say, teamwork is lost. That teamwork is also lost as soon as a pilot begins to think in terms of ATCOs being there only to give him the service he requires.
As Flight Safety Officer at my last company, I actively encouraged our pilots to visit ATC at our home base. I'm sorry to say I got a very poor response. I also extended an invitation to ATC to fly JS with us, and the respose was nil.
In my experience there is very little understanding generally between pilots and ATCOs of each others' jobs and pressures. Unfortunately there is not much encouragement to change that. Liaison and understanding will make the jobs of all of us a lot easier.
I think you arrogance is unbelievable. I bet you would be the first person to blame ATC if you went through the localiser or you where to high on the G/S because I had to repeat a TX because somebody wasn,t listening.If you are asked to report a restriction etc to the next sector it is to keep you alive not just an ATC whim.I would guarantee that if you where told to report a direct routing to the next sector,that would be the first thing that you would say.Therefore,when you are requested to do something by ATC just do it rather than ignore it.We are all in this together.
Wow, what a response, and not entirely what I had expected. I really was trying to point out to ATC that pilots don't always do what we ask, despite the ramifications of all that may follow. What I don't know is how often this is occuring. Trying to see the wood for the trees, I can see possible reasons why restrictions wouldn't be passed on by a pilot, but from the seat where I'm actually being able to observe the cascading consequences of what may seem a small omission, I also really wanted to stress to a small number of pilots that there will be a reason for the instruction and it could be important. Why gamble that it isn't?
We are all a team and we really do need to have dialogue and this is probably the best method I have at the moment, so I'm sorry if I ruffled a few feathers, but I hope that someone, somewhere, ATC or pilot thinks about this for a moment. This IS teamwork, isn't it?
For heavens' sake - how many of you are capable of reading? Not many of those who have replied so far.
How many times have I said above that pilots don't ignore instructions deliberately or "on a whim"? How many times have I said "We're all on the same team"? How can you tell when a pilot is not listening? Because he doesn't respond? There are many other reasons for that other than "not listening".
j17 it really is a bit rich of you to accuse me of arrogance, then go on to say "Therefore,when you are requested to do something by ATC just do it".
No. Shan't. At least, not necessarily. There may be very good reasons for not following ATC requests or instructions that you know nothing about. If we cannot accept instructions, it is obviously necessary that we tell you why. But do not expect us to follow your orders willy-nilly when it is OUR lives at stake, not yours.
j17, your attitude smacks of the hugest arrogance out. Your assumption appears to be that we are there to do your bidding; if something gets missed then the pilot was being lazy or "not listening". Your attitude stinks. Go and modify your attitude, because if you act like that when in front of the screen, you are DANGEROUS.
As I have said many times, we are all on the same team. We make mistakes. You make mistakes. It's human nature. We try not to repeat ours. You do the same. We don't always succeed. Get used to it. And grow up.
To reiterate:-[list=1][*]Pilots don't ignore ATC instructions deliberately[*]There may be very good reasons why any particular communication was missed[*]All pilots with whom I've flown make an effort to improve their performance in all respects[*]We're all on the same team[*]You're not perfect and nor are we[*]Any effort to increase the level of liaison and understanding will help the teamwork, including fam flights, visits to ATC units etc.[*]Anyone who ignores such opportunities is ignoring part of their job[/list=a]Anyone still got a problem with any of that?
I for one as an ATC apologise to the many professional aviators and aircrew that scan these forums. I think a great deal of mutual respect exists. (not necessarily btwn Centres )The topic of Fam Flights has been raised before but was there was no point as the typical ATC attitude..whats in it for me... (apart from maybe some interest and pride and the chance to better oneself) was evident.
I try and make an effort to visit the flight deck on any flight and have made many friends as well as learned quite alot about the capabilities of the various acft (dont mention the Concorde or you'll upset the LATCC blokes)
Never ever been caught speeding or gone through a red light Hugmonster?????
Asda..........I started this same topic a few months ago, and got exactly the same response from the self-same person.
It may be prudent for people to read up the number of incidents that are caused by wrong readbacks........and yes, we in ATC get blamed for not picking them up !
And might I just add something here......ATC instructions are mandatory, as stated in the Rules of the Air and Air Traffic Control Regulations.
I think the main thing we as ATCers are trying to say is, that any instructions on speed/heading that we ask you to pass to the next frequency are done so to provide an established separation. They are, therefore, VERY important and not done just for the hell of it.
Yes, we are all a team, trying our best to get things done safely......but really, Huggy, if you read your initial post you should be able to see the vehemence in it ? No wonder some in ATC have had their cages rattled !