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Old 23rd Sep 2009, 06:57   #1 (permalink)
 
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Standard Operating Procedures

There are numerous posts littering Prune with dire warnings for not following SOP`s which is all good and well...Do we know what SOP`s are? In my experience no.

How do you check this? Are your "Company SOP`s different to the manufacturers? -it`s allowed if approved - are they different to the Aircraft Flight Manual -allowed as long as the AFM is changed via a supplement."

So go through your company SOP`s and compare them step for step with both the AFM and the manufacturers SOP`s - are they different? if so why? Lots of Operators think they can write up their own SOP`s which is true but comes with some serious repercussions. They have to be approved by "the relevant AUTHORITY" being your CAA FAA JAA - not the manufacturer - there is no Airbus or Boeing Authority. Is your authority competent to approve the change? ie do they have a flight test section? do they certify aircraft or rubber stamp FAA JAA?

Does the following apply to you or your company?

Many experts agree that implementation of any procedure as an SOP is most effective if:

(1) The procedure is appropriate to the situation.
(2) The procedure is practical to use.
(3) Crewmembers understand the reasons for the procedure.
(4) Pilot Flying (PF), Pilot Not Flying (PNF), and Flight Engineer duties are clearly delineated.
(5) Effective training is conducted.
(6) The attitudes shown by instructors, check airmen, and managers all reinforce the need for the procedure.


If all elements (above) are not consistently implemented, flightcrews too easily become participants in an undesirable double standard condoned by instructors, check airmen, and managers. Flightcrews may end up doing things one way to satisfy training requirements and checkrides, but doing them another way in “real life” during line operations. When a double standard does appear in this way, it should be considered a red flag that a published SOP may not be practical or effective for some reason. That SOP should be reviewed and perhaps changed
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Old 23rd Sep 2009, 08:17   #2 (permalink)
 
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groundfloor,

Quote:
Lots of Operators think they can write up their own SOP`s which is true but comes with some serious repercussions. They have to be approved by "the relevant AUTHORITY" being your CAA FAA JAA - not the manufacturer - there is no Airbus or Boeing Authority.
It seems that the UK CAA disagrees with you - see UK CAA CAP 676, Chapter 3, Step 1:

Quote:
If the procedure in the AFM requires amendment, this must be carried out by the manufacturer or other organisation approved to make such amendments prior to changing the checklist.
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Old 23rd Sep 2009, 09:19   #3 (permalink)
 
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Hi chainsaw, it would appear the UK CAA are aware of what they can and cannot do...So in the UK case (G reg a/c) the manufacturer will be approached by an operator to change the aircrafts flight manual.

The manufacturer will change it (for a suitable sum of course) and then most importantly submit it to the certifying authority for approval!! Only once the change has been approved will it flow back downhill via the manufacturer to the operator.

For example: A British Airbus operator would approach Airbus who would then approach EASA (European Aviation Safety Authority) or there might be a possibilty the operator could do this directly?

I therefore don`t think the UK CAA are different at all - they have made it clear what you have to do. Perhaps do not regard themselves as an appropriate authority?

Last edited by groundfloor; 23rd Sep 2009 at 09:32.
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Old 23rd Sep 2009, 09:46   #4 (permalink)
 
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The lack of proper documentation is one of the biggest problems that affect flight operations with small airplane/operators. Thus in normal and non-normal operations.

Small / medium airplanes have no FCOM / SOP issued by manufacturers , just AFM and POH and the check lists issued are just a small format copies of AFM.

This documentation has no consideration for local regulation requirements and "human factors priciples" for its use by pilots as it is intended as a "certification" and legal documentation.

Small operators have no resources / authority to issue own procedures/check list and Local Authority consider the manufacturer documentation as the "official one " to be followed.

So my Autority requires to me the use such "official" documentation (hawker 800XP) whereas :

-The AFM require a mandatory check, but gives no indications on "HOW" to accomplish it (expanded procedures are missing from AFM).

-The pubblished "normal check list" is not a "real check list" but is a mixing of checks , and procedures, note and warnings in a sequence inapplicable with the "done list " concept.

-The pubblished and approved "emergency check list" is missing of critical procedures as : pax evacuation, ditching and forced landing.

Manufacturer say that the local Authority must approve SOP and emergency Procedures , the Authority says the opposite.

Due to the lack of manufacturer informations each training organization (FSI and CAE) have developed their procedures which are different.

My Company has followed CAA -UK cap 676 raccomandations and issued SOPs and, regardless of any burocratic and formal requirements, has urgently issued some "appendix" to the manufacturer check list for the missing procedures.
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Old 23rd Sep 2009, 11:25   #5 (permalink)
 
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It's all pretty straight-forward really. If an operator, due to their own particular set of circumstances, environment etc., wishes to change an operating procedure from that laid down by the manufacturer, they must approach the manufacturer with the proposal.

If the manufacturer assesses that there is no problem with the implementation of the suggested amendment, they issue a NTO (No Technical Objection)........ Simple

If the manufacturer does not approve, they will say NO!

I know of one case (because I was the proposer) where the manufacturer changed the AFM for all of that aircraft type after pointing out a deficiency. There are many other such instances.

Regards,

Old Smokey
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Old 23rd Sep 2009, 12:15   #6 (permalink)
 
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groundfloor,

As Old Smokey said:

Quote:
It's all pretty straight-forward really. If an operator, due to their own particular set of circumstances, environment etc., wishes to change an operating procedure from that laid down by the manufacturer, they must approach the manufacturer with the proposal.
My bolding.

Which coincides with what I tried to tell you in my original post:

Quote:
If the procedure in the AFM requires amendment, this must be carried out by the manufacturer or other organisation approved to make such amendments prior to changing the checklist.
Is really is pretty straight-forward groundfloor, particularly if you follow this STANDARD way of doing things.
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Old 23rd Sep 2009, 21:30   #7 (permalink)
 
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A letter of no technical objection from a manufacturer is just that. You must still approach the appropriate authority letter in hand for the change to your AFM procedure to be approved...remember that manufacturer SOP`s are not certified - you must check that the SOP you are changing is not an AFM procedure, if it is your AFM will need changing.

The manufacturer writes the AFM and presents it for approval to the certifying authority - any subsequent changes must be approved as well

Absolutely agree that if we all followed the KISS method and forwarded requests and motivations for changes to the manufacturers things would be clear cut and simple. They know which procedures are AFM and which are not and will change AFM procedures and get the change approved as a matter of course. If you select to let them run your entire set of books the rest of your documentation will also be updated.

Last edited by groundfloor; 23rd Sep 2009 at 21:43.
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Old 23rd Sep 2009, 22:53   #8 (permalink)
 
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groundfloor,

I think you need to clear up in your mind the difference between ACCEPTANCE and APPROVAL (and 'yes', the two terms ARE used in certification and ongoing surveillance). A read of the old Joint Implementation Procedures should clear up any confusion that you seem to have in this regard.

I think you also need to look at where SOPs originate, and that if they originate from AFM procedures then they can't be simply changed as you suggest, because the AFM forms part of the aircraft certification.

As previously stated, if you want to change checklists then do it the way old Smokey and I are suggesting. If you still disagree, then go and have a chat to the UK CAA re CAP 676 and tell them why they've got it wrong.
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Old 24th Sep 2009, 02:46   #9 (permalink)
 
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One of the best operations I have ever noticed, and participated therein....

One small SE Asian airline (then, now very large) operating B707 equipment at the time.
All checklists/QRH etc were in complete comformity with the relevant Boeing procedures, and....the relevant Boeing documents had the company logo applied thereon, with instructions to....'fly the aeroplane this way, please, thank you'.
\
Worked like a charm.
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Old 24th Sep 2009, 03:44   #10 (permalink)
 
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Cool

411A,

Excellent point! And I agree..........all the Boeings that I've flown have had standard 'unaltered' Boeing checklists/QRHs, and they worked just fine the way they were (and the way they were originally intended too, I guess). The Boeing example of 'If it ain't broke, don't fix it' perhaps?

So after your words of wisdom I guess I should really change the last paragraph of my previous post to read:

Quote:
groundfloor...if you follow 411As advice, you can't go wrong. However, if you still want/feel the need to change checklists, then do it the way old Smokey and I are suggesting. In the likelihood that you still disagree with all of this, then so be it.

Last edited by chainsaw; 24th Sep 2009 at 10:02.
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Old 22nd Oct 2009, 13:47   #11 (permalink)
 
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Is it possible to get your company SOP to analyse and use for my company?
Thanks.
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Old 22nd Oct 2009, 14:03   #12 (permalink)
 
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Grrr

Look above. Do you honestly think someone will send you his/her company SOPs and manuals to "analyze"? The Boeing procedures are pretty exhaustive, use those as a guide.
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Old 22nd Oct 2009, 14:17   #13 (permalink)
 
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I think Boeing procedures is not exhaustive especially for russian pilot who never flew Boeing but very old russian aircrafts. And why you think nobody will sent? Is it such a secret?!
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Old 22nd Oct 2009, 19:59   #14 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
I think Boeing procedures is not exhaustive especially for russian pilot who never flew Boeing but very old russian aircrafts. And why you think nobody will sent? Is it such a secret?!
There is nothing wrong with boeing's procedures...you just need to READ them.

But something must be wrong with your employer. Especially since every topic you have started, you are always asking what you CAN and CANNOT do on your 757 and even how you should do it???????

And no there is nothing secretive about SOP, but like others have told you in the past:

Quote:
izrailev......

There is NO WAY that we can give you our procedures as in the event of an accident, the legal liability can be placed upon our employers!

Sorry, but you gotta work it out yourself or pay someone.
Scary!
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Old 22nd Oct 2009, 23:20   #15 (permalink)
 
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In many cases...

In many cases, if you look in the preamble of both the FCOMS and your company's SOP, there is a 'disclaimer'. In many cases, the airline is assuming liability for deviation in its SOPs from prescribed procedures set forth in the manufacturer's FCOMs.

However, in some cases the NTO exists.....Single-engine taxi might be one example of this.

In all cases, what we do and how/when we do it is specifically and explicitly approved by FAA. Example, a normal checklist: Our company had its own normal checklist, which was different from the manufacturer's.
At the bottom of our checklist was a signature of the POI (Principal Operations Inspector....or the specific FAA office charged with overseeing our operation) approving that checklist.

This practice is common in the U.S. Most large air carriers have their own way of doing things. Right, wrong, or indifferent....smart or stupid....that's the program.

In my case, I never cared one way or the other....just tell me what you what, and that's what I give you. Pay me at the end of the month, and life is good. I always looked at the SOPs as a security blanket. It's difficult to hang me in a court of law when I was following my company's SOPs (that were approved by the FAA).

In point of fact, legally, I would be in violation to not follow the SOPs.
Each air carrier, in order to obtain an air carrier operating certificate, must jump through many hoops as dictated by the regulating aurhority. One hoop is that the carrier must have prescribed, approved, operating procedures, some sort of flight operations manual, etc. Following those procedures is the basis of certification.


Fly safe,

PantLoad
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