multi rwy airport in CAVOK with an ALTN less than the minimum diversion fuel
Much like LHR when BAW38 landed short. Suddenly you do not have multi-runway airport, you have a closed airport with fire Cat 0 and more diversions than the nearby diversions can take or Japan in 2011 when a whole country closed. Where do you go then? It is thoroughly unpleasant to be able to give no special handling to the diversion Pans and Maydays because there are so many of them. I expect it is even less pleasant to be one of them. One day an event will leave us with less available landing runway than aircraft needing them.
That would be planning in anticipation of multiple failures with the whole operation. If you follow that line of thinking you could end up off-loading pax to accommodate all the fuel to cover all the possibilities. You have to stop somewhere.
At minute 34:00 one of the interviewed pilots tell this:
Pilot: "If I take off and seconds after take off I get a message on my computer that I do not have enough fuel on arrival. If I get that message already at take off than I starts to wonder something must be wrong here " Reporter: did that happened to you? Pilot: it happened last week
How is this possible? What I understand this could caused by a bad programming of the FMC by the crew or not taking into account winds enroute. Any comments?
Nor does an A340 stuck at the end of a 3215m single runway airfield prevent an emergency landing... a 737 can land within 2000m easily.
However I have seen MXP close, because of a suspected fire either onboard an aircraft parked at the gate or even in the terminal itself. Never found out exactly. No blocked runways whatsoever! Simple fire category downgrade and ATC closing the airport.
MXP = fire 9
Sorry but flying around northern europe and especially london airfields is an entirely different ATC perspective then southern europe. Especially spain and especially madrid. The extra fuel those Ryr aircraft took are less then what I take on a cavok day into Madrid! I have never had to think hey maybe I shouldn't have taken it cause I didn't use it. MAD atc is piss poor on a cavok day and completely unreliable. They once sent me around from 7nm to threshold. After the G/A I queried the reason... Previous aircraft had not reported runway vacated, eventhough they have groundradar, us flying at final approach speed and thus having 2-3 minutes to go. Landing 20 minutes after the G/A. They are useless and can't space aircraft into a decent sequence. And groundcontrol is even worse. Don't get me starter on their meteorologists either...
Anyone going with plog fuel into MAD on a regular basis is bound to encounter problems. Anybody waiting to reach minimum fuel before diverting in spain is likely to encounter problems. My reason on the plog... MAD/spanish ATC... Never queried by management or trainers.
Some places require planning for multiple contingencies certainly if bad ATC is one of them. And even in northern europe simply busy airspace requires some thinking ahead.
Do I feel any pressure from my management (not FR btw)... No...
Any pilot who feels pressured to take less fuel than what he wants is one too many! And it is up to management to create an environment where this doesn't happen. Publishing fuel league tables is not a good way to promote this imho.
The valencia incident has equal blame between pilots and atc. ATC for not being up to standard on even a normal day and the Pilots for not realising this!
Yes fuel is expensive, try having a crash. Although I suspect the beancounters in aviation statistically inferred that you can have one every 7 years or so, I don't want to be that statistic. Nor get my company or my head all over the news.
FR2054 landed with 1029kgs final reserve 1104kgs. FR5998 landed with 1160kgs final reserve 1119kgs. FR5389 landed with 1228kgs final reserve 1090kgs.
FR2054 plog was 5887kgs they took 6500kgs. 600kg extra. Diverted at 2900kgs. FR5998 plog was 8917kgs they took 9200kgs. 300kg extra. Diverted at 2900kgs with minimum 2664kgs. FR5389 plog was 11,828kgs they took 12,720kgs. 800kg extra. Diverted at 2600kgs with minimum 2588kgs.
Apart from FR2054 all aircraft landed with the legal minimum. And they all took extra. Only FR5389 diverted at the minimum, because he declared mayday early he landed 138kg above final reserve. The other 2 show that our diversion routings are not realistic when everybody needs to divert.
What more evidence is needed that the reserves our plogs prescribe are not sufficient for MAD? In fact I believe our legal reserves are a very bare minimum for most destinations! Not allowing any time to overthink or execute a mildly complicated QRH checklist once those minimums are reached. Those 30 minutes are only 30 minutes if you don't have to go-around from fully configured.
Two KLM skippers were criticising Fr's fuel policy whilst on that 26th of July one of the many aircraft not having extra fuel was... KLM... I was in the hold over MAD when KLM checked in: "MAD app the KLM XXX level YYY position ZZZ, whe have 10 min extra fuel request expected approach time". When ATC was unable to give them an answer they diverted to, J think, BCN. If that night there would have been any holding at BCN they would have been in exactly the same situation as the Ryans in VLC
You don't know that. They had 10 minutes of extra fuel, that's all you know. Extra on top of what? Bare final reserve plus altn fuel? Or final reserve plus altn plus a margin to cover a holding at destination? In fact, we know when they arrived at BCN (I am assuming the flight to the possible holdng at BCN) they had at least 10 minutes to spare, since they went for BCN with 10 minutes extra. We do know at least one FR landed with less then 30 minutes left.
My point is that our legal reserves are not that safe at all! Ryanairs planned diversion routes were not realistic in terms of fuel, I doubt my company's are any better. Nor for that matter KLM's, BA, LH, AF or any other carrier.
My point is that our minimum plog fuel on a nice day can very quickly turn into scraping the bottem of the barrel.
ATC can cause a lot of problems and creating emergency aircraft by downgrading the fire cat from 9 to 0 in an instant when there is 1 small fire somewhere on the airport. Brave man who waits around for emergency fuel status before diverting to another airport btw. Which is where the problem (the alternate) will be. Not that multiple runway cavok destination. Or did you drop the alternate as it was such a nice day with multiple non crossing runways and seperate approach aids.
Sorry but when someone starts mixing statistics into plog fuel, KLM does this for instance, I start doubting. My company stopped with planning for longest SID and STAR, instead a computer determines likely arrival based on rwy configuration. Every slack is cut from minimum plog fuel by commercial drive. Maybe its time for the authorities to increase the legal minima and thus provide a level playing field.
And soon we can add EASA ftl into the mix of minimum fuel ops and possibly inexperienced crew.
Yes all this could happen to any airline, but when pilots feel pressured regarding their fuel decision something is wrong. Fuel league tables are wrong. Just saying that these 4 pilots are weak and can take the fuel they want is not the answer to the problem. Nor that they are lying. There is a cultural problem in FR it seems.
Location: A Whilom nimble brain. With 31 million posts.
Do you know what I'd do under these circumstances - a rhetorical question.
I would start a database logging just who did the pressuring. Most of the crew of that airline would have to agree. It would be database held privately, but all relevant flight details recorded. Possibly, a copy of the plog and fuel receipts.
Boxes to tick. Is the bloke qualified? In addition to this, do they, or did they, hold ALTP / ATPL / ATP, and were they ever fully operational aircrew?
I would guess there are not may people that can tell the skipper what to do and it would be interesting to see any spikes in a graph pointing towards individuals who are company-minded to the point of obsession.
Before you go into hyper-spuffle, I can tell you, I've met a few of these.
Yes, worth a look, but remember the 'pressurising' will not be documented unless you take a 'prisoner's friend' into the 'no coffee no biscuits' chat.
We had one little weasel at BA LGW (ex ground engineer I think) who took on a flight management post and staring walking around with the fuel league table folder obvious under his arm until it was suggested he might want to fold it VERY SMALL to avoid too much pain..
Ryanair bashing? Where do I bash ryanair? As I said this could have happened to any airline.
What I am saying is that somethimg is wrong when (even only one) pilots feel pressured into taking minimum plog fuel. Or are taking less extra fuel then they feel comfortable with. I am saying that publishing fuel league tables is wrong. And that if pilots feel pressured its up to management to make sure they don't feel pressured. Instead of stating that the pilots saying they feel pressured are lying or trying to identify them through flight numbers and names. Clearly these pilots feel they have no where internally to go to. For me that is enougn evidence for me that there is a cultural problem within ryanair.
As long as you take plog fuel you are legal, as long as you land with final reserve you are legal. Legal does not equal safe imho.
You seem to completely miss the point of
Brave man who waits around for emergency fuel status before diverting to another airport btw.
This was in relation to your:
By the way, ATC cannot 'close' an airport to any aircraft in an emergency.
How don't u understand level playing field? If the rules are equal for all companies to take more fuel then it's a level playing field in terms of competition.
You seem to just be talking about what is legal and what is not BOAC. I'm talking about what is safe in todays busy european airspace. Maybe the legalities regarding fuel reserves are a bit outdated.
There is NO requirement in aviation to carry any 'holding' fuel if you are not going to hold. Simple!
Maybe holding fuel should be dictated even if you are not going to hold.
does it work? If not, you need to take extra and annotate the plog accordingly. If it does, either stop complaining or leave for another airline that does.
That would actually be pressuring now wouldn't it? I can luckily take what I want without fear of represailles or a manager asking me if the system doesn't work or if I would like to seek employment elsewhere...
Does it work! Do I get direct routings throughout europe, yes! I can't answer if it works, because daily routings do not reflect planned routings. But what I can see is that the planned alternate routes for ryanair did not work on that day.
But at least we know from which direction you are coming BOAC, thanks for making it clear.
So now I need to be accountable for what other people write on this topic BOAC, or what the program reports?
Ryanair was given opportunity to respond to the program, they didn't! If you read the emails Mcnamera sent to the program, well... I think it's like they just run away from the fact that 4 pilots out of 3000 feel pressured. That is not normal and 4 out of 3000 is too much. 1 out of 3000 is too much. Clearly you think they should go to another airline, I think ryanair should reconsider their internal policies.
I can't help it that you don't understand... just believe me that it wasn't related to the valencia incident. I'm not going to spell it out for you. Hey ho!