These are indeed the facts. The pilot was told to hold until emergency services arrived by tower. The pilot wanted to land straight away. Told it would be 30 mins wait. He did so and then ran out of fuel in the process.
He should have diverted direct to Perth where they have emergency services at the airport.
ALL GAAP should have at least 1 fire appliance on duty.
The lives of GA pilots and their pax are worth the same as Airline pilots and their pax too.
Sancho - can't argue with your sentiment that GA lives are as important as the majors, BUT - I have to disabuse the popular notion that placing RFF at GAAP or large regional ADs would make any difference to outcomes (ie lives saved).
Fact is, as tragically proved many times, when light aircraft prang at or near aerodromes, it is either outside the immediate environs so airport based RFF is no more useful than normal metro fire services; or it's 'all over red rover' within literally seconds of impact.
Unless you subcribe to the notion that we should have (and pay for) RFF at every decent sized AD, AND they should be sitting next to the threshold with the engines running 24/7, AND an EMS service +/- helicopter is on 24/7 standby at the AD, then provision of RFF is a moot issue.
In my opinion 30 min to respond from the nearest metro fire service centre to the AD is a pretty sad indictment on that service; however, running dry while holding for 30 min??? What happened to the 45min res + variable? Or was it longer that 30 min? Some more facts needed here I think.
As your from QLD I will let you in on the situation in JT WA.
We have the RFDS and St Johns Ambulance based at the AD. Also the new rescue helicopter service is based here as well. The only missing service is the Fire Service (except Police who are useless anyway).
I agree about the fuel reserve issue, but I repeat that if the delay was considerable I for one would have diverted to Perth where emergency services are in attendance.
I think you would agree that a GA pilot/pax life is worth just as much as an airline Pilot/Pax if YOU were the one concerned.
What happened to the 45min res + variable? Or was it longer that 30 min?
You seem to forget that fuel reserves are no longer mandated by CASA they are stipulated in the company operations manual which is merely "accepted" by CASA. Maybe their ops manual said 30 minutes? But I agree I would have headed for Perth Airport.
Flying is so much cheaper now GAAP don't have RFFS isn't it? All these services get removed but the costs still seem to escalate at the same rate.
The fact tha the tower told the pilot to hold until emergency services arrived is no excuse for running out of fuel. If the pilot was that low on fuel he should have told the tower of this and landed straight away.
The company in question has a fuel polocy of 45 min Fixed reserve at cruise fuel flow and 10% variable reserve. If the pilot was cutting it so fine he couldn't hold for 30 minutes at the holding fuel rate maybe he should be considering another career.
I don't know which organisation or crew were involved and am not interested either. Enough sh!t gets flung around JT as it is.
I hope that there is something in this for us all, SAFETY must come first, and working out the safest options is what we all need to do, for each individual set of circumstances.
After the last few weeks in aviation, its good to see one where the people had a good outcome.
The Wiz has been known to give good and bad reports about operators/schools and the rest at JT, there is no problem with that. But I make up my own mind, using my own background/training and judgment, just as I do about the people who, and what they post here.
We have the RFDS and St Johns Ambulance based at the AD.
interesting place to put an ambulance station, at an airport.....wonder what the decision making process was on that one.......facilitating aeromedical transfers perhaps?
RFDS is moot - they don't have doctors sitting there waiting for prangs, and in that light unless the ambulance is sitting there on instant response, and the helicopter on the pad turning and burning, then the end result is the same - no difference to outcomes.
I think you would agree that a GA pilot/pax life is worth just as much as an airline Pilot/Pax if YOU were the one concerned
I have already agreed, but if I were asked to pay more for GAAP or any other airport in order to base a dedicated RFFS there, my answer would be NO - because it makes no difference to outcomes. A less than 10 minute response time is entirely appropriate - if your local fire service is not acheiving that then some questions need to be asked.
When will pilots (PIC's) ever learn. When you have an emergency, you TELL atc what you are going to do. Do not allow them to tell you. There have been numerous accidents (some fatal) in Oz because the PIC has allowed himself to be coerced by this. This is definately NOT having a shot at atc. They do a very good job, but the PIC is the one in the hot-seat and knows the situation first hand. The PIC calls the terms in an emergency.
You have hit the nail on the head of that one my friend!!! As pilots in command of an aircraft you have the life or death choices to make, and YOU should make them, not be commanded to do something that will end in a big mess. It has been seen tooooo many times before. Good job of the pilot though and good to see he will fly again another day.
Will CASA be interested in the 30 min actual endurance ? Obviously the pilot thought he had much more than that or he wouldn't have agreed to hold. Most Barons have pretty crappy fuel gauges and even the sight gauges can leave you guessing a bit
If the only good thing that pilot did all day was to put the aircraft on the ground whilst he still had control, instead of ending up in a pile of burning fuselage like so many of these types of incedents, then he is one wise dood and a much wiser pilot for the experience.
As for the professional outfit that he was working for, have they 1) got this guy back into the air with the CP to get his confindence and moral back up, I doubt it!!! 2) paid him any income for that or any of the flights he may have done in the days prior to the incedent!!! 3) will he be rehired or told to look else where!!!
If they where a reputable company, they would have a internal investigation into the cause of the incident, if there was any deficiences in both the pilot and the companys training and checking system ( if they even had one) and make the required changes to the ops manual.
Like most small companies that only employ casual pilots, did he have a copy of the ops manual, my guess is that he did not. Also I bet that the MD & CP where running around like chooks with there heads cut of ensuring that all the CAO's and CAR's such as pilot files, ops manuals, pilot memos, and company documents where in place so that they looked squeaky clean when CASA poked there head in to investigate.
Finally, if this had happened in an airline enviroment, the pilot would have helped with the investigation, been given a promotion to another aircraft type so that the company can put him through a full training scenario and get him back on line.
Something that was said to me many years ago buy a old aviator, " We spend years flying the aircraft in the hope that oneday we will get it right every time, we have one emergency and where expected to get it completly right the first time !!!!!!!"