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Old 2nd Nov 2015, 10:52
  #3381 (permalink)  
 
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sarah19981

And the point of your comment is????
Monty Gordo is offline  
Old 2nd Nov 2015, 11:06
  #3382 (permalink)  
 
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Decisions are made by people who are far closer to the coalface than the contributors to this thread.
Likewise the ops teams at almost every other major UK airport who opt to accept what diversions they can on a reasoned case-by-case basis. BTW, many contributors here are quite familiar with the coalface.

They are in constant dialogue with the myriad of agencies and partners that make up the operation of the airport and hence are acting with all of the facts in front of them.
So this is not the case at every other major airport in the UK?

Perhaps time to respect those decisions and the people that make them.
MAN is indeed fortunate to have the only airport ops team in the country with such inspired decision-making skills in a mass-diversion scenario!

You may have noticed that many of flybe's early arrivals of non-based a/c were cancelled, so presumably T3 was able to cope.
Good point. Consider a situation when MAN's own FlyBe inbounds from Scottish airports were all cancelled due to snow up there. Meanwhile, the SOU-EDI and SOU-GLA flights, already en-route, request MAN. The 'NO DIVS' NOTAM takes care of that ... refused. Two Eastern JS41's refused by default as well. The T3 gates remain unoccupied and the handling staff twiddle their thumbs. FlyBe unhappy, MAN loses money twice by rejecting the chance to offset the effect of their own flights already cancelled. Yes, maybe MAN can't accept a B747/A380 div on that day ... hence the appeal for a common-sense case-by-case policy (not a free-for-all).

So in a way, taking it your response on above questions would be MAN is nearly full with that lot alone, I can understand the blanket "go elsewhere" in a way.
The 'NO DIVS' NOTAM bans everything! In your scenario, why not specify no air transport diversions (if that is really necessary - see the FlyBe scenario). Why by default exclude Citations, Learjets and the like which can park with Landmark?

All we are advocating is a common-sense case-by-case solution. The "our ops team knows best" argument only stands up if their counterparts at all other major UK airports are inept. And by the way, the convenience of Manchester Airport's ops managers is not the only consideration here ... spare a thought for the airlines whose airborne flights need a dynamic resolution, and to ATC who need cooperation in finding safe-harbour for the backlog of flights holding in the air. And from the point of view of the ATC system, the ability to offload three Citations or three ATR's is just as valuable as offloading three A380's from the worst-affected sectors.

Maybe we should all just accept the wisdom of those who argue that because MAN can't accommodate A380-divs, we should allow the ATC-system to become overloaded with holding executive jets and commuter types. Ever spared a thought for that coalface, dear handling agency experts?
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Old 2nd Nov 2015, 11:21
  #3383 (permalink)  
 
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I read every post and we have this conversation every year and for some reason I come to the same conclusion.
So, due to the fact we have the audacity to question why MAN is seemingly unable to handle ANY diversion last night while other airports were seemingly able to handle multiple diverts means we are nothing but spotters wanting diverts to log?

For me, it was nothing to do with 'spotting', I haven't been 'spotting' in years. It was a genuine question as to why diverts could not have been evaluated on a case by case basis rather than a blanket ban on any divert except emergencies. I've said before, diverts are not the be all and end all, and you have to stay within your handling capability, but, some good does come from diverts and, as said, I fully understand that MAN couldn't handle 10-20 diverts, but, not even one E-Jet, come on!

I notice that, my question funnily enough remains unanswered as people are quick to come out with the 'effing spotters' remarks rather than reasonable answers.
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Old 2nd Nov 2015, 11:46
  #3384 (permalink)  
 
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I notice that, my question funnily enough remains unanswered as people are quick to come out with the 'effing spotters' remarks rather than reasonable answers.
Absolutely right, LAX. And may I remind these contributors that ATC staff located in en-route ACC's a couple of hundred miles away are not concerned about logging reggies at MAN either. They're just tearing their hair out trying to persuade certain airports to help clear backlogged holding traffic with finite fuel reserves by accepting a reasonable share of the burden. And earning some revenue into the bargain. Some airports have a reputation for being really helpful in these high-stress situations, and some ... well, don't!
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Old 2nd Nov 2015, 12:05
  #3385 (permalink)  
 
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Shed, you seem quite knowledgeable on ATC issues so do you know why MAN often has such huge gaps between approaches when in LVPs? We've just lost a RYR by the looks of it because of the delays and there only appeared to be 4 or 5 a/c on approach or in the hold.

I was watching the situation at LGW yesterday when even in LVPs with departures on their single runway to get away, there were often 4 a/c on approach and the gaps looked shorter than often occurs at MAN. Here we often see 2 a/c on approach including one on short finals, and perhaps a 3rd just coming out of a hold.

I realise that LVPs means single runway ops at MAN and that there may be a backlog of departures to get away (to free stands?) and that the mix of traffic can affect spacing, but is priority given to arrivals to try and avoid a/c having to divert in that situation?
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Old 2nd Nov 2015, 12:06
  #3386 (permalink)  
 
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So do you think MAN are just being difficult? Do you not accept there is probably good reason not to accept diverts? And if you don't, what qualifies you to make that call?
Would you not accept that MAN, regardless of what other airfields are doing, is simply making decisions based on MAN and to protect the MAN operation? It's also worthwhile mentioning that MAN too was suffering its own disruption and whilst this may have meant reduced movements on the airfield, the handling agents were probably maxed out in the terminal.
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Old 2nd Nov 2015, 12:36
  #3387 (permalink)  
 
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Easyflyer,

I do hope that MAN has some good reasoning, but, to ban any diverts to protect their operation at MAN was a tad over the top.

If a single E-jet divert could impact the operation at MAN so much, then serious questions have to be asked at what the hell is going on for that to happen.

The thing is, people are being quick to defend, but, the main point seems to be constantly side stepped. Im Not sayin MAN should have opened its doors to anyone and everyone, but, to blanket ban without even looking into diverts on a simple case by case basis was a tad extreme. By all means, say no to the 2 B777's that diverted, but, to say no to an jungle jet for fear of impacting your operation, seriously?!

I'm also not saying MAN had bags of space and myriads of staff sat around doing nothing, but, what I am saying is that when you have to refuse a simple e-jet through lack of whatever, then serious questions need to be asked why there is absolutely no flexibility on the system at all. Where is your buffer space? Where is your contingency?
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Old 2nd Nov 2015, 12:48
  #3388 (permalink)  
 
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How's this for a bit of spin? From a M.E.N article today.

A Manchester Airport spokesperson said: “Like much of the UK, Manchester Airport has been affected by the fog and low visibility over the past couple of days.
"There have been periods where conditions have improved, flights have landed as normal and we have been able to accept diverted flights from other airports experiencing the same issues.

Were they counting the 2 LBA diverts Sat. night before the notam went up, or have we missed something? Don't think so somehow.

Oops, nearly forgot. Did we actually have a solitary Hawarden divert yesterday afternoon?
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Old 2nd Nov 2015, 12:50
  #3389 (permalink)  
 
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So do you think MAN are just being difficult? Do you not accept there is probably good reason not to accept diverts? And if you don't, what qualifies you to make that call?
'Making a call' is what happens when all parties concerned consider each individual case on its own merits. A 'NO DIVS' ban-everything NOTAM prevents sensible calls from being made. A Learjet and an A380 do not have identical effects on an airport's operation. There may well be a case for accepting the one and not the other. Either is equally helpful to an ATC sector. Note that I don't claim to be qualified to make the call. But those who are in a position to do so seem to prefer not to consider making any calls.

Would you not accept that MAN, regardless of what other airfields are doing, is simply making decisions based on MAN and to protect the MAN operation?
MAN does not operate in isolation. It is one element amongst a complex network of airports and the airspace sectors which link them. It is part of a system. Those aircraft which are holding to divert need to go somewhere - if any one airport in the system resolutely refuses to play any part in resolving the issues, it really heaps unwarranted pressure on the rest of the system. Do you think that is OK? Even when they could make a valuable contribution, however limited?

the handling agents were probably maxed out in the terminal.
Yes, God forbid that a handling agent is busy shuffling paper at the gate. Better overload live ATC sectors with holding aircraft burning time-sensitive precious fuel reserves to prevent that problem from arising.
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Old 2nd Nov 2015, 13:15
  #3390 (permalink)  
 
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MANFOD - I am not well-briefed on the operation at LGW so it is difficult to offer an objective response. However, looking at their aerodrome charts I suspect that the answer lies in the layout of their runway exits. In each direction they have three fast turn-offs [RET's] to aim for (plus other exits). Of course, some of their exits may be forbidden for use during LVP's as is the case at MAN (I don't know). What I can tell you is that whilst ops during LVP's at MAN do appear to be painfully slow to an outside observer, the gaps deemed necessary are the outcome of a very carefully examined safety case. Safety overrides every other consideration.

Certainly, an aircraft diverting away represents far more loading from an ATC perspective than one which is able to land normally at its planned destination. It is in everybody's interests to accommodate as many arrivals as possible within the bounds of safety.

Last edited by Shed-on-a-Pole; 2nd Nov 2015 at 13:32.
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Old 2nd Nov 2015, 13:28
  #3391 (permalink)  
 
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Thanks for your comments Shed.

A good example of what I meant just now on FR24. A Monarch on short finals with a flybe turning over Oldham on his approach. Nothing else except 4 a/c still in the hold at Dayne.

I do appreciate safety has to be paramount. Ironically, the wx is better than it's been all day with an RVR of 1,300m on the last actual but still LVPs of course.
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Old 2nd Nov 2015, 13:34
  #3392 (permalink)  
 
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And for anybody still interested, the usual notam is back until midnight.
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Old 2nd Nov 2015, 15:24
  #3393 (permalink)  
 
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Change of ownership structure affecting diversions?

Fifty years ago the airport was solely owned by Manchester Corporation. In the 1970s the ownership was transferred to the GMC so that that body and its constituent councils' ratepayers benefitted, as had the city's, from profits at the airport. Diversions, sometimes in vast numbers, were commonplace and the MEN, then a proper newspaper, was only to pleased to trumpet the benefits of diversions to the populace.

Had today's blanket ban been in place then both the paper and councillors, in open committee and full council meetings, would have been making some very strong representations to lay at the airport CEO's door.

After Thatcher got rid of the GMC, the management changed and a substantial amount of external funding has, over the years, changed the makeup of the company. Now, as a plc, it is responsible to the shareholders and whilst the councils are still shareholders, the direct connection to the ratepayers has gone, and the public nature of the deliberations no longer exists. Management now operates as any other plc and the whole ethos has changed. The money men are in control where previously aviation people ran the show.

The bottom line dictates as little overtime as possible should be paid for, ground handlers bid for contracts on minimum prices meaning their overtime and staffing levels are cut to the bone and the commercial success of the airport, without any major increase in stands, has led to a situation where a controlled handling of diversions is necessary, but not a blanket ban, which almost looks as if management are taking the easiest route to the bottom line knowing the shareholders have little interest other than in maintaining their dividend.
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Old 2nd Nov 2015, 15:44
  #3394 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by MANFOD View Post
Thanks for your comments Shed.

A good example of what I meant just now on FR24. A Monarch on short finals with a flybe turning over Oldham on his approach. Nothing else except 4 a/c still in the hold at Dayne.
Whilst it's a fascinating app, FR24 isn't a very good tool to use in such an analysis. Not everything shows up on it (though I grant you a lot more does than used to be the case) so apparent gaps may not actually be there. You also get the phenomenon sometimes of Embraers and Dashes seemingly coming to a halt after passing Stockport and being overtaken by an Airbus or Boeing!

Phil - to add to your last paragraph, apart from the push for profits/dividends by shareholders, there is also the desire from us, the paying public to fly for peanuts, which also drives the push minimize costs.

What would be truly revealing would be for someone 'in the know' to breakdown the costs of a diversion, and whether an airport really does make any money from it. I suspect that in these days of contract penalties the benefit of making a few hundred quid (if that) from a diversion is outweighed by the risk of the cost of making a scheduled inbound wait for a service that that diversion has taken for longer than expected.
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Old 2nd Nov 2015, 16:07
  #3395 (permalink)  
 
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Whilst it's a fascinating app, FR24 isn't a very good tool to use in such an analysis. Not everything shows up on it (though I grant you a lot more does than used to be the case) so apparent gaps may not actually be there. You also get the phenomenon sometimes of Embraers and Dashes seemingly coming to a halt after passing Stockport and being overtaken by an Airbus or Boeing!
Good points Curious Pax, although I was aware of those issues. I sometimes manage to keep an ear on the RT as well as an eye on FR24!

Interesting list of diversions from LBA today which includes EDI, PIK and about 5 to NCL. The latest look to be off to LPL and EMA.

Again, the points made by you and Phil about costs being cut to the bone to keep shareholders happy and provide cheap fares for pax, I'm sure are right.
What some of us are questioning though is why such a stringent diversion policy only seems to be applied by MAN and all too frequently. Other airports such as LGW and BHX also have profits to make, dividends to pay etc. yet both these airports accepted diversions yesterday - LGW from LCY despite its own problems, and BHX a multitude from various airports.

If the answer is solely down to lack of stands, (which seems unlikely on a Monday afternoon), wouldn't that raise a separate question as to why MAN struggles for parking space for aircraft on a regular basis at peak times? They know how many a/c are likely to be based in peak summer, and in winter the extent to which Jet2 and the like want to park up a/c.
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Old 2nd Nov 2015, 16:28
  #3396 (permalink)  
 
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MAN does struggle for stands at peak times, we know it, and they know it, hence maybe why a 1 billion pound redevelopment is around the corner !

Until it's done it's always going to like this...maybe even worse during construction if any stands are temporarily lost.
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Old 2nd Nov 2015, 17:45
  #3397 (permalink)  
 
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Well if my sources are correct, there were AT LEAST 8 remote stands that were not used at all from 1945 until 1015 this morning, with the number peaking at 11 by 1020........

Lack of stands is obviously a fallacy!
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Old 2nd Nov 2015, 17:51
  #3398 (permalink)  
 
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For those who may not realise, Olly was an adopted cat at the airport for several years before moving to a new home. He has since passed away, but his spirit lives on as Shed's post testifies.
Olly, invoke one of your nine lives and come back, your airport needs you!
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Old 2nd Nov 2015, 17:51
  #3399 (permalink)  
 
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Diversion policy

Whilst I don't agree with all of the posts with regards to the No Diversion policy, I did have a quick thought, taking into account MANFOD's comments with regards to inbound delays.

If Ops at Manchester are taking weather into consideration then maybe the No Diversion NOTAM would ensure that no 'fuel shortage' calls were made by inbound diversions, thus causing additional delays to our own traffic.

I will now go back to more important thoughts.
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Old 2nd Nov 2015, 17:56
  #3400 (permalink)  
 
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Whilst I don't agree with all of the posts with regards to the No Diversion policy, I did have a quick thought, taking into account MANFOD's comments with regards to inbound delays.

If Ops at Manchester are taking weather into consideration then maybe the No Diversion NOTAM would ensure that no 'fuel shortage' calls were made by inbound diversions, thus causing additional delays to our own traffic.

I will now go back to more important thoughts.
Come on clutching at straws here, delays happened irrespective of diversions and it's not as if MAN was been asked to taken hundreds of them and operating at 100% capacity.

Well if my sources are correct, there were AT LEAST 8 remote stands that were not used at all from 1945 until 1015 this morning, with the number peaking at 11 by 1020........

Lack of stands is obviously a fallacy!
That's a lot should of taken a max of 5 diverts really and get a few free for un expected problems.
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