Military AircrewA forum for the professionals who fly the non-civilian hardware, and the backroom boys and girls without whom nothing would leave the ground. Army, Navy and Airforces of the World, all equally welcome here.
One of the main driving factors behind the 'main base' policy was consumption of airframe hours. Also, returning loads from theatre(s) and delivering to outlying bases often requires a crew change at Lyneham, using 2 crews for 1 task. Not very efficient, from 2 Gp or the Stn's point of view.
With regards to the rugby team, you'll most likely find that the task used MCT hours - giving up our own (scarce) training time - incurring costs that would have occurred anyway. Not that I agree with using our precious trg hours in this fashion, but that's another issue.
Location: Quite near 'An aerodrome somewhere in England'
I once went flying on a Fri afternoon; the idea being to do some AAR in the North Sea, then pop into Waddo on the way home to pick up the Stn Cdr and some Air Marshal he was brown-nosing at a meeting before carrying on to the Covert Oxonian aerodrome. All went swimmingly until we lost an engine in the climb.... Sorted that, dumped, RTBd.
"Looks like Kelvin and his chum will have to come back in their car then, Boss"
"Err, no. Sorry, but he's insisting on being picked up by air"
So, as well as having to start the engone change, the groundies also had to generate an a/c from cold. We got a scratch crew together and eventually headed off in the direction of Waddo. Land, taxy round, pick the git up, fly home.
It must have been an urgent reason indeed for such a private taxi service? Was it hell - he went straight to Happy Hour.
Meanwhile, the driver drove the car back empty. Now, the meeting had actually been at Cranwell. So, had they driven back direct from Cranwell - rather than being driven north to Waddo to wait for us - they'd probably have got back earlier.
And the groundies worked long into the night to A/F our jet as well as doing the engine change on the other one.
An efficient and reasonable use of resources.......?
Let's face it, the reason PPRuNe is so popular is because you can have a whinge......but then you can still be dragged down to HQ like a naughty schoolboy (another story) Once you've had a whinge, then actually find out 'why' - and make sure that the reason they gave you is countered for the next time you go Crab Air. When you realise that some civvy bean-counter, who knows the cost of everything but the value of nothing, actually holds the purse strings and your reasoning/rational amounts to the square root of f all, then either live with it or leave. I made my decision at Christmas - I'm off mate, don't forget to turn the lights off!!
You still haven't told us the important bit......who won? Don't tell me you're one of those overweight gits who actually moans about everything, including the price of fish..........
PS It would not have surprised me if Gp missed a trick with your flight but find the reason out first, then whinge:-)b
You are quite right about it being up to the host airfield whether they open or not, to allow you or the shinys to drop us off where we live, and Waddo is as bad as the rest of the air farce for saving money by not opening at weekends etc.
However, what is annoying is when one budget holder (the man who decides whether or not to open the airfield), decides to keep it closed (on a Monday & Tuesday, not even a weekend). This ensures that another budget holder (Sqn), has to pay an extra 2 days subsistence to 60+ people so that they can stay away from home for longer.
I would also be most grateful if someone could explain, in simple terms, what the role of DTMA is? The one and only time, that I am aware of, recently where they have been involved, it was DTMA's decision to send a jet back to BZN when there were in the region of 180 Wadd persons on board, along with many other FJ personnel. It was a sight indeed to see about 8 MT coaches outside the terminal at 7am.
I would also be most grateful if someone could explain, in simple terms, what the role of DTMA is?
If the military want to move something, the Defence Transport Movements Agency is responsible for making it happen. That's anything to be moved, whether by land, sea or air; whether on military means or through a civilian carrier. This extends as far as the Pickfords van that moves you on posting (DTMA pick up the bill!) They even own their own port for all the shipping moves they conduct. As far as the AT fleet is concerned, DTMA are the strategic tasking authority, meaning that they have the say on what is carried by AT where to and when. In new-fangled weasle-management speak, 2 Gp is a service provider and the pax are DTMA's customers... in an over-arching, proactive, paradigm sort of way.
Location: Quite near 'An aerodrome somewhere in England'
Back in the days when the AAR element of the AT/AAR world had a bit more autonomy, it was quite common to bring back some of the trail-support personnel in the back of a VC10K without too much interference from movers, watchers or any other no-you-can't-ists. But rarely did the Gp planners think about planning the jet into anywhere other than Brize.
But it didn't take very much effort to check whether there was sufficient fuel/CDT to take the FJ mates where they actually wanted to go. Having once been on the $hitty end of the stick myself waiting for MT from Wattisham to brave the Cotswolds, this was a particular bugbear of mine and I invariably tried to secure approval to land at the customers' own base. This was invariably accepted if it was do-able; in those days we had a reputation of being a 'can-do, will-do' outfit not under the leaden hand of the truckie world. We just used to tell them "You get the crash cover and customs sorted, we'll drop you off!". As well as suggesting that "We don't want to hear the actual crash cover when we call up on arrival.....so have a quiet word with the Air Traffickers, please, if you get my drift "
Sadly, these days there just doesn't seem to be the flex as the inbound jet might be needed for another task very soon after arrival - something which an intermediate landing elsewhere simply wouldn't permit.
Mind you, our independence of spirit was occasionally a bit much for some. On landing at Gutersludge once, the co-pilot mate who was looking after the cabin (before the jobsworths banned such things) was interested to see someone in KD coming up the steps.
"Yes, what do you want?" he enquired.
"I'm Fg Off xxxx, the DAMO"
"The DAMO - what's that then?"
"Duty Air Movements Officer. Now, where are your pax, the manifests, the ALM....."
"Listen mate, we're tankers. So just f*** off, will you!"
At the risk of a little thread-creep....ol' 'erc chum of mine (Roger, loved yachts, surname rhymes with Ed*nbr*w) spends a night in Goose en route to Germany to take back the obligatory RB199 and assorted air experience ground power units to FJ base. Over beers in the Mess he gets completely fed up with the constant whining from the Tonka boys over truckies always going u/s about 30W and diverting into Lye, hopping off the jet with a cheery wave and disappearing into the mist. Funnily enough, at about 30W, Roge is monitoring the co from the comfiest bed in NATO when the prop low oil light comes on. After a precautionary engine shut down, he now has the perfect excuse to follow the banter-rich scenario painted by his steely-eyed pax. NOT A BIT OF IT. Bravely eschewing the ire of station and Grope, he soldiers on to Bruggers and goes u/s.
You see, AT are really a helpful bunch who would rather see the job done, but often get hamstrung by the taskers et al.
By the way, Roge got a massive rocket up his jet pipe for his trouble and was invited to fly baby navs around at FL390 soon after....which just goes to show....something.
Location: Quite near 'An aerodrome somewhere in England'
Good bloke, Rog. I went through 99 Entry at RAFC with him, then ULAS.
In 1982 he was the 'sweeper' Herc following our F4s out to Akronelli via a pit-stop in Brindisi, there being no tankers at the time. After shutting down at Brindisi we wandered over to the Herc - to find RE with the bunk mattress on the tarmac by the jet blissfully sunbathing whilst listening to his walkman. A somewhat cool and colourful image which surprised even the fighter mini-wheels on our wave!
Ar$eCoat must be the only 'airline' which dumps its passengers even further from their final destinations than even Ryanair....
Yes, it was a frame that had planned to go north for training but had cancelled part of the sortie due to wx.
By the way, we don't look after our own down here..... Crews trying to get out to BSR could just jump on the fortnightly frame change from Lyneham with all our clobber and thence into a minibus at BSR straight to the tent. Or.......we could be denied this method and instead be made to bus to BZN for the great shiny dick dance. No point in making life easy.
Your point making shows some immaturity and perhaps a lack of understanding.
For me, I happily recall a return indulgence from Calgary in 1992 with 2 tired teens in company. Having arrived at check-in, we were informed that the flight was full with an Army move back to Germany from that Albertan Prairie place where they play tank battles. Desparate to get back to UK (and not wanting to pay full whack) we waited and waited while the Movers told us that they had never failed to get indulgees home! Eventually, the Tristar Captain informed us all (indulgees and troops alike) that he planned to make an unscheduled stop at Keflavik at 0300 to pick up gas so that he could guarantee getting all of us and our bags out & home via Hannover (to dump the Army off) before flying back to BZN.
So, I think the truckies are marvellous and pragmatic, sympathetic and damn fine chaps!! Let it be said!
What was the Rugby Score? Which is surely more to the point, Lossie guys!
Recently after bending into Seeb on our way back from 6 weeks away on Ex we found 20 Canberra grouncrew who had been left by their aircrew with no planned AT to pick them up. We took them back to their home base without any second thoughts of weather they were OUR OWN or not!! Must just be you
Lyneham won, excellent!!!!! Now, let's see if the next opposition actually have a runway at their 'airfield'..............
Remember a similar 80bob feeling coming home in Albert when we were picked up from Leuchars.........I think Lyneham lost that time....
Although we won the time Albert took us to Conningsby, kicked their sweet, sorry, ar5es. Wanted to fly in myself but skipper wouldn't allow it (in case co got injured), Conningsby's FJ execs turn up to cheer but were nowhere to be seen at the final whistle.......
Got my own back against the Sport Prevention Brigade when a slip pattern through Akronelli happened to coincide with the 10s comp. Captain this time, so end result was crew only just able to climb the steps following morning.
Hell, "when I'ing" already and I have not even bought my sand bags yet.
As the title of this thread suggests, it is 2 Gp and your own TLB holders that stop this happening. Often, it is just the lazy git on the ASCOT ops desk who can't be ar**d to change the itinerary.
Your profile says: 3500TT, 1000 PIC C-130J Captain, but you've obviously learnt bugger all about things outside the flight deck in that time. I'm on the phone to the ITOC lots. If you like, I could chat to Obi and either Kev/Al and see about getting you inserted at ASCOT for a month or so in order that you could show them just how it should be done. After all it would give you a nice easy break for a while and you'd help improve the system soo much for everyone else. Coughsser.
Alternatively have a chat with your policy man. With your vast amount of knowledge and experience about "...the lazy git on the ASCOT ops desk who can't be ar**d...". I'm sure that he would be sympathetic to your thoughts...
Three or four years ago I managed to persuade the Ascot Ops controller to revitin us through Colt on the way back from Incirlik (ahh ...happy days ) to drop off some Jag boys. Their exec sorted the crash cat/customs, just like Beags mentioned earlier. Offloaded them on the ORP with half the engines still running and was away towards in Oxon in no time. Everybody happy.
Found out later the poor guy at Ascot had a roasting for letting me do it. Whoever that was - Soz mate!
Anyway, back to swanning round the world, on tasking made up by me, for my own convenience, at everyone elses expense.