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Old 19th Oct 2012, 09:09   #21 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Essex, England
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The layout is not that unusual, a lot of airports have done the same reconstruction. Nice, for example, and they should be familiar with that one.
I assume you have not been there. I am sure many would disagree with your statement that it is not that unusual a layout. What has Nice got to do with it - comparing them is like comparing chalk and cheese? The taxiway in Nice is not TWICE the width of the runways, and neither is it between them.

Quote:
And why have NCE invested in the world's largest flashing 'X', that you can see from 20K'
Not of any relevance to the topic we are discussing. The larg flashing X at Nice is ONLY used when there is WIP on one of the runways. It is NEVER used to highlight a taxiway.

Quote:
The markings are quite clearly those of a taxiway and not a runway which, since it was CAVOK, makes you wonder what was going on in that FD? Amazing!
I guess as someone who never makes mistakes, you never amaze yourself!


Quote:
That said, the failure to verify visual cues (runway intersection holding point signage etc) is rather worrying.
Runway incursions and events like this happen almost every day somewhere on the globe, and yes it is rather worrying, but pointing accusing fingers at one crew, or suggesting that they were not attentive or didn't have (or follow) appropriate SOPS is not the way to prevent future occurrences.

Quote:
Potentially this type of incident could happen to any airline - as long as humans are involved there is a capacity for error. Fortunately in this case the error was picked up by ATC.

Of course we should continually seek ways to prevent future incidents such as lighting, signage etc and even better or more relevant training.

I would ask the question "Are you perfect?" - I suspect the honest answer would be "No" - then who are you to judge imperfection?

Am in no way making excuses for this crew. I am sure they are mortified by such an error.

I see this type of incident as a "system failure". Who are we to judge when we do not have any facts about what was going on at the time?

Rather than damning any airline or individuals we need to ask how we can prevent these incidents from ever occurring again?

= the most sensible post IMO

Last edited by sooty3694; 19th Oct 2012 at 09:21.
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Old 19th Oct 2012, 09:30   #22 (permalink)
 
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I guess as someone who never makes mistakes, you never amaze yourself!
Very defensive retort Sooty. Yes, I do amaze myself at times. Luckily not whilst in command of an airliner full of passengers. This could have been catastrophic. They are supposed to be highly trained professionals and whilst mistakes can occur due to sometimes understandable (though not acceptable) mitigating circumstances, on this occasion they must have been mightily distracted on this clear day with the actual runway clearly visible next to them. That they went as far as commencing the roll on a clearly identifyable taxiway is defenseless. Would you have felt the same if it had been catastrophic and your loved ones were on board?
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Old 19th Oct 2012, 09:35   #23 (permalink)
 
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Sooty and Firefly are onto it, probably two minutes before the incident that crew could never have believed they could make such a mistake and would also have been "amazed".
Now they know the reality. Stay humble.
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Old 19th Oct 2012, 09:43   #24 (permalink)
 
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I've seen one of these incidents in action. A 737 lined up on a big fat taxiway with a 777 rumbling towards it from the far end. Fortunately, ATC noticed and cleared the 777 off the taxiway and pointed out the error to the shocked crew.
Quote:
...probably two minutes before the incident that crew could never have believed they could make such a mistake and would also have been "amazed".
Now they know the reality. Stay humble.
Well said Framer. The reality is perfectly competent pilots make these errors. Therefore, in my view, it can happen to any other competent pilot.
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Old 19th Oct 2012, 10:01   #25 (permalink)
 
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The reality is perfectly competent pilots make these errors. Therefore, in my view, it can happen to any other competent pilot.
Well, if that's your standard of competency it's time for me to stop flying! In my book a COMPETENT pilot should not make such an INCOMPETENT mistake as this.

Last edited by Hotel Tango; 19th Oct 2012 at 10:02.
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Old 19th Oct 2012, 10:26   #26 (permalink)
 
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Well, if that's your standard of competency it's time for me to stop flying! In my book a COMPETENT pilot should not make such an INCOMPETENT mistake as this.
That's just it though HTango.....they do. It's often not the bottom dwellers who sneak through their sim checks by the skin of their teeth that make these cock ups. It's Jo Bloggs who has been perfectly competent for years. Accepting that you could make the same mistake is half the battle.
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Old 19th Oct 2012, 10:47   #27 (permalink)
 
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As this incident took place at 0356Z in mid-October that is surely before daylight, so the visual references are only going to be the lighting and illuminated signage, not any perception of concrete which "looks like" a runway.

Last edited by WHBM; 19th Oct 2012 at 10:49.
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Old 19th Oct 2012, 10:50   #28 (permalink)
 
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dawn was around 05:45 Zulu today in Sofia so yes - dark
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Old 19th Oct 2012, 11:46   #29 (permalink)
 
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Sooty

Quote:
I assume you have not been there. I am sure many would disagree with your statement that it is not that unusual a layout. What has Nice got to do with it - comparing them is like comparing chalk and cheese? The taxiway in Nice is not TWICE the width of the runways, and neither is it between them.
I fly to Sofia regularily. It has never occured to me, that it would be a difficult airport to taxi. I have been there in summer and winter, in sunshine, TS, snow, day and nighttime.

What does Nice have got to do with it? Well, maybe you haven't been flying for too long, but that southern runway is new, and the parallel taxiway used to be a runway...
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Old 19th Oct 2012, 12:13   #30 (permalink)
 
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taking off in an easterly direction, sunrise at rougly 5:00Z, so just before sunrise, but looking in an easterly direction into haze (vis 4k...), possibly after a nightduty... From a taxyway that used to be a runway... swiss chees, holes...
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Old 19th Oct 2012, 14:26   #31 (permalink)
 
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What does Nice have got to do with it? Well, maybe you haven't been flying for too long, but that southern runway is new, and the parallel taxiway used to be a runway...
Nice since 1979, but whether its layout is new or old I still do not see the relevance.

The old northern runway at Nice is indeed a taxiway now, but it is not twice the width of one of the present runways, and neither is it situated between the two active runways.
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Old 19th Oct 2012, 14:50   #32 (permalink)
 
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Well, if that's your standard of competency it's time for me to stop flying! In my book a COMPETENT pilot should not make such an INCOMPETENT mistake as this.
Hotel Tango, I am struggling to comprehend your post. Are you suggesting that because you have such a high level of competence you are you not going to make a mistake of this magnitude - or any mistake?

Or perhaps you are suggesting that there are competent mistakes and incompetent mistakes - and that the only mistakes you make fall into the competent category?

If you don't believe that you have the potential to succumb to any of the psychological factors that effect human performance, then I would suggest you haven't learned much about flying yet.
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Old 19th Oct 2012, 15:45   #33 (permalink)
 
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Honeywell's "Smart Runway" system would have prevented this and many other similar events (Comair Lexington comes to mind).
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Old 19th Oct 2012, 19:26   #34 (permalink)
 
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I thought AF had RAAS on their fleet? A rather loud 'on taxiway, on taxiway!' would get their attention. The sooner RAAS is mandatory the better.
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Old 19th Oct 2012, 20:24   #35 (permalink)
 
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I' m not saying you're wrong Jo, but can you give us some facts and figures on that or is it just your perception?
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Old 19th Oct 2012, 20:40   #36 (permalink)
 
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Maybe an understandable incident in isolation ... but how long must PC dictate that the elephant in the room be ignored? - The conspicuously disproportionate number of serious incidents that occur amongst French operators, notably AF.
Please provide data including which numerator and denominator you propose to use to justify such a wild claim

Ignore the data on PPRuNe since we tend to make elephants out of ants behind our keyboards.
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Old 20th Oct 2012, 01:34   #37 (permalink)
 
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Maybe time for s/e asian countries to 'ban' AF? ok that might be a bit harsh (at the moment) but lets be honest their safety record is not exactly great is it ?given a choice as a passenger i would certainly avoid them like the plague.
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Old 20th Oct 2012, 04:39   #38 (permalink)
 
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Our airline has added a runway verification line to the checklist just before departure (below the line on the taxi check). We verify the runway listed in the FMC and verify the actual runway outside the window.

The reason for the addition was the number of runway specific RNAV fixes that we fly to on departure. There were some incidents of ATC switching departure runways after pushback and the crews not entering the new runway and new SID transition. But the runway check also serves to capture this type of error.
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Old 20th Oct 2012, 04:55   #39 (permalink)
KAG
 
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Downin3greens:
Quote:
Fench says it all...one language in the cockpit
One language? So at least speak it correctly, French, not Fench.

Those kind of mistakes are happening everywhere in the world by any kind of crew.

I admit I myself once took off from my friend' backyard... I was flying an Ultra Light though...

A reminder: a taxi briefing should be done before the take off briefing, hope it helps...
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Old 20th Oct 2012, 05:27   #40 (permalink)
 
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Joe: but how long must PC dictate that the elephant in the room be ignored? - The conspicuously disproportionate number of serious incidents that occur amongst French operators, notably AF.

Incidents with non-AF? Which ones? Please explain!

Accidents and incidents with AF? Plenty :, Concorde in 2000, Toronto A340 (aircraft destroyed), Rio-Paris A330 in 2009 228 fatalities
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