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Old 1st Apr 2011, 09:01   #1 (permalink)
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BALPA and SEPLA Partnership and Fatigue

How are BALPA and SEPLA going to be dealing with the outsourcing of work as management looks to reduce costs and fatten their bonuses? This is a necessary partnership for them. Any thoughts ?

It will be necessary such partnerships to fight against the upcoming changes on duty time and rest at the European level. Any rumours of action against the proposed changes increasing the flight duty period and reducing rest at the European level ?


"Talks at strengthening the links between associations of airline pilots have been held in London.

The top level talks between BALPA (the British Airline Pilots' Association, representing more than 9.000 airline pilots in 25 airlines) and the national pilots' association in Spain, SEPLA (the Sindicato Espanol de Pilotos de Lineas Aereas, representing over 5.000 pilots in 27 airlines) started in Madrid in September against a background of growing trans-national operations and a changing regulatory framework in the industry.

Talks between the pilots in BA and Iberia have already been taking place and protocols agreed as to how they will deal with the expansion of the new merged airline. And pilots in easyJet already have a European agreement.

But the SEPLA/BALPA partnership talks are looking at how the respective national associations can work together.

BALPA Chairman Captain Mark Searle said 'The two unions believe that whilst there is free movement of capital, employment laws are in the main domestically constrained, leading to airlines playing employees off against each other. We will do all we can to prevent this.'

SEPLA President Captain Javier Martinez de Velasco said 'By working together in partnership we can more effectively deal with regulation which is increasingly being decided at European level.'

Both SEPLA and BALPA recognise that national pilot associations dotted across Europe may not be the best way of protecting and promoting the profession's interests or of safeguarding the travelling public.

Under the umbrella of the European Cockpit Association (ECA) cross border discussions already take place between pilot associations leading to collective influence at the EU and in the European Parliament. SEPLA and BALPA have recommitted to full participation in ECA.
But this week's talks identified that whilst airlines have been developing through cross-border mergers the way pilots organise themselves remains nationally based and slow to respond to the changing nature of aviation.

The talks have identified a range of activity where an early start can be made at developing a new model. These include developing common policies on issues such as the increasing threat of fatigue amongst pilots, shared research facilities, reciprocal legal support, an initiative to benchmark salaries across both country's carriers, aligning our training courses for representatives, synergies to reduce costs, looking at how we can harness increased buying power with suppliers to make members' subscriptions go further and partnering on some of SEPLA's international charity work.

SEPLA and BALPA are also gearing up to challenge today's threats to the pilot profession such as the use of casual employment and the outsourcing of jobs to subsidiary companies with possible impacts on flight safety. This growing trend has symptoms of uncertainty of employment and taxation status and unpredictability of working pattern and location.

Under casual contracts pilots will not know where they will be working or in which country they will sleep from day to day and week by week. The associations are also concerned that young pilots are being exploited by not only having to find 80,000 to get his or her basic licence but then having to pay over 30,000 to an airline for the 'privilege' of co-piloting one of their aircraft.

Captain Javier Martinez de Velasco and Captain Mark Searle said 'We believe in solidarity between pilots and to preserve that core value in the new world requires us to rethink how we organise. We are each proud of our traditions and heritage, but we will not become prisoners to it. By working together we can achieve anything and make sure that every flight is a safe flight."

Lets see how effective this partnership shall become, I wonder..?

Last edited by Hannibalpower; 1st Apr 2011 at 09:23.
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Old 1st Apr 2011, 09:47   #2 (permalink)
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When BALPA & IALPA attempted to cooperate to achieve union recognition in Ryanair, BALPA was the "sleepy" partner of the two , and due to inertia and dithering on their part , the best opportunity for recognition went to waste. Despite IALPA's exortations to "get the finger out" they wouldn't take the bull by the horns.
Given BA and Iberia both have recognition this won't be a problem. The (I assume) reasonably militant Spanish Prince should take care who he gets into bed with, she ain't no nymphomaniac, fairly frigid in fact from what I have seen
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Old 1st Apr 2011, 10:19   #3 (permalink)
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Anti Ryanair Day


It would be great to organize an Anti Ryanair pow wow in Barcelona

Have a demonstration at the Barcelona and Madrid Airports, with press and whatnot.

Get the brits and Spanish pilots and cabin crew together in Barcelona and Madrid.

Barcelona the latest airport under seige by the Ryanair Virus

Then have a party afterwards.
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Old 1st Apr 2011, 11:41   #4 (permalink)
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I am not anti-Ryanair, what they do is in fact is what they should, which is to take care of their business, and is why they make a huge profit instead of a huge loss, like Spanair/Vueling et al.

The ones I am against are the self serving sheep who refuse to grow a pair and join together to protect their already seriously eroded T's & C's.
What happens there comes to us all, no matter what company we are working for.
Their total inability to see beyond the end of their nose in the trough, as they seek little titbits for themselves, eventually screws us all.
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Old 1st Apr 2011, 14:23   #5 (permalink)
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Totally agree with about the self serving sheep. How true !

Nothing wrong making money just the way they do it.
Like the case of firing a captain for handing out a union pamphlet.
Ryanair should be boycotted for that.

If its just about just making money might as wellget into the toxic waste disposal business. I dont like organizations that treat people so badly.

Vueling just made a 47 million euro profit.2nd year of profits
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Old 1st Apr 2011, 15:23   #6 (permalink)
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Ladies and Gentlemen:

The subject of this thread is:

"BALPA and SEPLA Partnership and Fatigue"

So, how is that within five posts it has become an instant attack on Ryanair?

I have a LOT of friends in Ryanair and the one thing that they love beyond all is the fact that their rosters are very stable, they work 5/4 and that, in actual fact, they are very unlikely to hit 900 hours per annum (unlike BA).

Not only that, they are home every night.

So how exactly has this thread been hi-jacked by those who know nothing of what they speak and how have they managed to divert the main topic?
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Old 1st Apr 2011, 15:27   #7 (permalink)
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Thinking about the above:

How long are BALPA going to be able to defend the Virgin limit of 750 hours per year when they have already given up on BA doing 900 years per year?

There is nothing like being united in your approach.
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Old 2nd Apr 2011, 07:26   #8 (permalink)
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It's been said many times but the 750 hours at Virgin does NOT include positioning. That can easily add 50 to 100 hours a year. In any event it is quite possible to be working flat out and not hit 750 in year.
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Old 4th Apr 2011, 11:26   #9 (permalink)
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Exclamation Proposed change in flight time limitations

Have a look at the proposed changes by EASA to flight and duty time and rest requirements.

Reducing our rest period-not acceptable.

Any thought on this document because as they say we better wake up

See the link below

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Old 4th Apr 2011, 23:54   #10 (permalink)
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conflict at iberia

looks like conflict at iberia been going on over outsourcing, and negotiations and a pilot dying of malaria.

airplanes taxiing at 5 knots, flights cancelled, iberia covering it up to the passengers, delays,etc,
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Old 5th Apr 2011, 20:47   #11 (permalink)
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Can you just let everyone know here what conditions are set for the reduced rest you mention?
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Old 5th Apr 2011, 22:24   #12 (permalink)
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One of the former head SEPLA men at Futura is now an FR CP in BCN = maybe he can lead a charge.

BCN base pilots at Ryanair just got 5.4 roster for the summer - so I think they are unlikely to want to rock the boat.
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Old 6th Apr 2011, 16:30   #13 (permalink)
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One in five pilots 'suffer cockpit fatigue'

BBC News - One in five pilots 'suffer cockpit fatigue'
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Old 6th Apr 2011, 20:07   #14 (permalink)
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You might not want to bother to read that.

"The problem with fatigue is that it slows your reactions down. When you are travelling towards the ground at 200mph and you have to make a decision within one or two seconds, if you don't make that right decision, that can lead to disaster," said Dave Smith from Balpa.
Where are the schools, and the convents?


"The landing can be 16 hours after the take-off and while the passengers have been asleep, we have to stay awake and we have to be at our alertest at the end of those 16 hours. That's a big task."
Probably tired when he said that.
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Old 7th Apr 2011, 17:38   #15 (permalink)

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What's your point, loose rivets?

Dave Smith is retired, so not likely to be 'tired when he said that'

BALPA is campaigning to raise public awareness about EASA's FTL proposals. Dave Smith is assisting the campaign. Convents and schools?

Which side of the fence are you on, old chap?
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Old 8th Apr 2011, 21:40   #16 (permalink)
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Inmates running the Asylum

I have just skimmed through the NPA and am now more worried than ever.

I am a native English speaker, grammar school educated with 'O' Level passes in English Language and Engish Literature.

The 244 pages of gobbledygook including references make little sense.

I would have hoped for a simple side-by-side presentation of the current management orientated proposals versus the FAA rules, the exotically named "SubParaQ" rules and our own now alas woefully inadequate and much abused CAP371 regs.

Instead I am forced to trawl through a mass of acronyms and the occasional Latin phrase to find bits and pieces of various FTL schemes placed adjacent to each other presumably orientated to place the commercially driven NPA by our thieveing Brussels Louts in a more favourable light.

A pathetically low sample of surveyed aircrew and accidents have been quoted in support of this numbing turgid prose, some of which is plainly ungrammatical and a disgrace to the compilers.

Compared to the number of professional licence holders in the EU I am surprised they can use such limited data with the obvious arrogance and complacency we have come to tolerate from our rulemakers.

10 years of accident and ASR data excludes the numerous cries for help from the flight crew, cabin crew, engineers and ATC personnel voiced in such publications as "CHIRP" and through the medium of this forum.

I am glad I shall soon be hanging up my headset for good, but will board my flight as SLF with some more trepidation after 2012, unless we as a professional group can highlight this issue before the travelling public and maybe force our EU lords and masters into a rethink.

Does anyone know how many experienced Commercial Air Travel professionals were employed in the drafting of this ghastly publication? I hope they can sleep easy after the next fatigue-induced smoking hole!!!
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Old 13th Apr 2011, 07:19   #17 (permalink)
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Exclamation Reduced rest 7 and a half hours

Look at the following proposed changes by these clowns.
Time for action to make sure these changes do not occur

In NPA 2010-14c the proposed changes to subpart Q are

7 days free of duty per calendar month.
The Home base may be a multiple airport location. Recommends operators not
to change the home base more than 4 times in any given period of 12 calendar
Limitation to 11:45 when the extension starts in the period 22:00 to 4:59 was
Extension of flight duty period due to in-flight rest: extensions beyond 18 hours
could be addressed by a specific Appendix to OR.OPS.100.FTL if the need
1000 flight hours in any 12 consecutive calendar months.
Reduced rest to a minimum of 7h30.

Ryanair STN
All the Ryanair pilots have to do is call SEPLA and they can have an SEPLA assembly in Barcelona. Also theres is an agreement with BALPA and SEPLA as well for Easyjet.

Last edited by Hannibalpower; 13th Apr 2011 at 07:30.
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Old 13th Apr 2011, 07:28   #18 (permalink)
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It's been said many times but the 750 hours at Virgin does NOT include positioning. That can easily add 50 to 100 hours a year. In any event it is quite possible to be working flat out and not hit 750 in year.
The 900 hours limit at BA does NOT include positioning too.
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Old 19th Apr 2011, 06:02   #19 (permalink)
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Rt Eng

I stand corrected. Anecdotally, ie chatting to BA guys/gals they seem to work pretty much as hard/less as those in VS in terms of days off. Bidline, it seems, works pretty and respects seniority. As for carmen rosters at VS......well I've seen a pilot with a seniority number in single figures not getting their bid!!
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Old 19th Apr 2011, 06:29   #20 (permalink)
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T&Cs at virtually all operators has been constantly on the demise, and i think a pan European Union for pilots would be a great thing. There are some things we do very well in the UK, sticking up for ourselves(reasonably of course) isn't one of them.

About 5 years ago i flew with a French contractor(who all the girls loved) and he admired the UK aviation community as probably the best in the world. But on the subject of pay etc he questioned how a people that had fought so hard for their freedoms, could really be the same people who just bend over and always take it time and time again.
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