View Full Version : NAS Reform? What planet are these fools on?!

Breaker Morant
1st Dec 2003, 10:52
Just had a 'courtesy' call from the 'Department' in response to my protest call last week at the implementation of our 'new, better, safer, cheaper' airspace system.

Reasonably polite chap but certainly didn't like what I had to say though regarding safety and the impact beancounters and enthusiastic amatuers have had on the world of aviation. Liked it even less when I asked would he apologise to the families of the victims of an accident that was a result of a lack of Air Traffic Services previously available until these so called 'improvements'. Of course that won' thappen, it will be: "Crew failure to maintain sufficient lookout" or "inappropriate radio frequency selected" or "Crew failed to manage cockpit workload sufficiently to provide adequate scan for traffic". It ceratinly won't be "the changes implemented to ATS were poorly thought out in the eagerness to slash spending"

This US system is predicated on RADAR coverage to almost ground level across most of the continental US. His answer: that 'new technology' would take care of this (he meant ADS-B when I prompted him as he didn't recall the name of it). This was obviously from someone knowing very little about how much such systems cost etc. Of course a C150 through the radome of a 737 will kill all aboard just as well as a DHC-8 or C402 passing through it but he didn't have an answer to that.

It will be with no joy that I will make a public issue of this call after the aluminium shower.

He also stated that he had flown into several small airstrips with one Mr S_ and it all seemed quite safe to him, but he didn't have any qualifications or flying experience of course so had no idea of the cockpit workload in say a Dash8 on descent or just how fast they go and how hard it is to see another aircraft when you don't know where to look after all .... it may not even be on your radio frequency!

He tells me that he fields about 60 calls a week regarding the NAS Reform and I am the only one opposed to it! Of course that is 10 a day.. lot of ppl to be ringing up to pat them on the back!Could this be true?.. If so ignore this post.

I gave up on PPRuNe some time ago as generally the signal:noise ratio was rather low but here is an issue worth speaking on. Maybe I am completey on the wrong track here. This is what PPRuNe excels at and was orininally intended to do. Have your say.

Suggest anyone interested give their little 'Airspace Reform Hotline' a tingle on 18 0000 7024 and state their point of view. Be prepared to give your name and ARN. No need to be rude just state you want a record of your protest call made for future use when, God forbid, Australia has to bury a lot of people because we had people running the show who were more interested in acconts and political expediency than the lives of those they are supposed to protect. And they just wouldn't listen.

Mooney Operator
1st Dec 2003, 10:59
There are only a handful that are apposed to NAS. If our old Airspace system is so safe and good why is not being used elsewhere in the world?

SM4 Pirate
1st Dec 2003, 11:44
Mooney boy, you just stick to your own area of expertise; show me one country in the world that has what we have right now...

Show me one country that uses IFR pick-up or VFR on Top like we have proposed (are using) here.

International harminisation; what a joke.

You and many like you are swallowing the line the US system; where in the US is it like this? Stepping stone; no it's not; will the end state have E above FL180, yes, does the US, NO.

Similar but not the same; as similar as their road system; it has cars, trucks and buses, stop signs, give way signs and even traffic lights, but is it the same?

Bottle of Rum

1st Dec 2003, 11:56
Mooney operator,
You are a fool. On what basis do you suggest a minority oppose NAS? Done some polling have you fool?
Oh, and heres a hint, if you morons are going to conduct a campaign here you might want to chose handles that don't expose you for what you are, pitiful amateurs.

1st Dec 2003, 12:55
I have just recently came from the States where I flew a scheduled cargo route, in a light aircraft (PA31) for 2 & a half years. The one big difference I found when comparing the 2 systems... is the ease at which it was to pick up IFR clearances on the go, and to get around to where you wanted to go easily & directly. This wasn't due to the popular belief that most of the country has radar coverage, in fact unlike Australia, they have quite a few mountains, which makes radar coverage impossible in a lot of built up areas. Not only that, I found that you actually had more say in where you wanted to go - even in the very densely populated areas. Although my experiences are from a light aircraft view point, I felt that the transitions from G to E to B class airspaces were really effortless. Traffic avoidance in class E airspace was routine and safe (with or without ATC help) - and most heavies had TCAS. The hardest part was after you landed, getting to your park. If these changes really do start to focus more ATC attention on runway incursions - and less on the air to air incidents, then it sounds like a good theory.

Chief galah
1st Dec 2003, 14:25
Unfortunately, even the best systems fail.....

The NTSB released its final report last week on the October 2002 midair crash of two Cessna 172s in Coral Springs, Fla., in which two people died.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:

The failure of the dual students and flight instructors on both N9840V and N6101F to see and avoid each other, which resulted in a midair collision.


Aussie Andy
1st Dec 2003, 16:07
Chief galah: One data point does not cut it mate. Unless you can show evidence of overall rates of accidents, fatalities, MAC, or whatever (per passenger/mile, hrs/flown, etc.) which illustrate that the current US system is less safe than the pre- 27 November Australian system, then the point you just made may not tend to persuade people.


p.s. Blair, Mooney: brace yourselves, as certain ATCs from Melbourne (like WWT) on here won't like it if what you say goes counter to their prejudice... they may call you "fool" and such like.

1st Dec 2003, 18:44
Speaking as someone who will be spending a large portion of their work time descending/climbing in and out of Tasmanian destinations, I can tell you that this NAS thingy gives me the screaming heebie jeebies. There is no radar coverage in Tas, and relying on TCAS as the final link in preventing an accident is farcical. (Note that 'See-and-avoid' was deliberately ignored here, a great principle, it has saved my @rse in the past, but it's just not up to being the basis for an airway system. Traffic's hard enough to pick up when ATC are telling you where to look!) No, I'm not convinced that operating in radar airspace will be much better, it's just that Tassie seem so much worse - Braille descents!

Safety has gradually increased over many years as a result of defences being placed to prevent recurrenced of painful lessons. Here, we are doing the opposite, change for changes sake - to suit the selfish/political motivations of a some peanut millionaire. For what it's worth, I'll certainly be making that 1800 call.

Andy, I know a number of ATC controllers quite well - they are very concerned, not about their careers, but about the safety of the travelling public. Your comments are insulting to an extremely professional body. Their 'prejudices' are probably aimed more in your direction - recreational, wrong hemisphere as well as full of shite.... To paraphrase Roy and HG, you need to find a room full of mirrors and have a good look around! (Buck palace might be a great place to start looking).

How (and could someone please provide details) is safety being improved here?

PS Mr Murphy knows that his Law is ultimately irrefutable. He's sitting back, relaxed, waiting, quietly chuckling. Time is on his side...

1st Dec 2003, 19:07
Andy. You wonder why the amatuer pilot is deemed to be mostly retarded and best left at the bottom of a bucket.

1st Dec 2003, 19:33
I'm pretty sure that the biggest risk of an accident/incident occuring is in & around the immediate area or an aerodrome...? Taking away some class C airspace & replacing it with E in areas not in the immediate vivinity of aerodromes, to free up ATC to monitor GND & TWR frequecies sound logical. As far as getting in and out of E... it's more "hands on"... but it is safe. The main issue should be the main risk factor.... that just makes sense.

1st Dec 2003, 19:47
Mooney Pilot,

There are only a handful that are apposed to NAS. If our old Airspace system is so safe and good why is not being used elsewhere in the world?

There you go AGAIN!

If the NAS is so much better and SAFER, why don't you explain it to the rest of us morons - we obviously have missed something....

Howard Hughes
1st Dec 2003, 19:50
Well I took my first flight under the new airspace system today. (just back off holidays). I fly a regional turboprop fitted with TCAS.

I must say everything went very smoothly on both sectors. However there seemed to be a distinct lack of traffic flying, we encountered no traffic VFR or IFR until we reached 30 miles from a capital city airport.

This has me a bit worried, it was a great sunny afternoon, were there people out flying? Were they listening out on the frequency that I was on? Or are they not flying for fear of the new airspace changes?

I flew through class G (with no radar coverage till about FL 135), and then class E, and finally into class C.

I would like to address some of the previous remarks with my own personal point of view.

I think FBF has made some good points, I certainly feel for the pilots flying into airports with overlying class E and no radar, relying on see and avoid as the primary separation tool.

Our country has many climactic and natural extremes, here are just a few that can affect your ability to see other aircraft even when you know where they are. Smog, smoke, sunglare at dawn and dusk (most RPT services run at these critical times), insect plagues and many more.
Now imagine descending to the west, late in the afternoon, into non radar controlled class D airport, during fire season, looking for aircraft (through bug splatter), that you dont even know are there. Does this sound safe or logical even?
Now this may sound extreme but it occurs every day at airports all over this great country.

Aussie Andy you are right, you cant make comparisons unless you take in all available data. I see a problem there in that Australia is unique and there is no other country with suitable data with which to compare.

Blair, I too have flown in the US, albeit a long time ago. Whilst I was there I was told By ATC's that the US excluding Alaska and Hawaii is 97% covered by radar to below 1000 ft (approx). This is approximately 67% more tha Australia and that is promulgated on 30,000 feet not 1000.

As far as aerodromes being the place where traffic is most concentrated, this is true, but as we approach an aerodrome we are more aware of which direction to look for traffic. ie: upwind, crosswind, downwind, base, final or a 5 mile final. On the open airways traffic could be coming, from virtually any direction as well as above or below!!

Now I have always been a forward thinker and have embraced change. I do like the new airspace system but with some reservations.

I think that:

1/ Class E should not overly Class D at Non radar airports.

2/ See and avoid should not be the primary seperation tool in Class E & G airspaces (non-radar). What is wrong with letting people know where you are?

I wish you all safe and enjoyable flying.

Cheers, HH.


1st Dec 2003, 20:16
dittos what blair said.... the US system is 100% less dramatic. Clearances into class C airport don't require flightplans and almost always get approved, and we regularly pick up IFR clearances in the air. I'm not sure why the aussie system can't work like this.

1st Dec 2003, 20:30
You may be interested to know that controllers have been given a sheet to record "inappropriate" transmissions from VFR aircraft on the former area frequencies and the info will be handed to CASA so they can send them a "please explain"

Gunner B12
1st Dec 2003, 21:48
How many of you saw this on the weekend?


The thing which worries me is that if what I've read elsewhere is right about safety assessments then the bit towards the end is either a mis quotation or an outright lie. The thing is as things stand I'm more inclined to believe it is a lie which is sad testament on the current situation. Can someone please put me right?

2nd Dec 2003, 03:33
the US system is 100% less dramatic Very valid point, which I think is the basis for some pilots being pro-NAS (including the big Dick).
I'll attempt an answer, and hope that some others more current can jump in and (politely) help.
The U.S. has a shiteload more infrastructure. I liken it to a full service petrol station, with mechanic attached. In oz, we have a fully automated self serve, with a console operator taking your money. They have a lot more traffic, but 20 times the number of controllers, plus FS, full radar, briefing etc etc. Their system is a lot more labour intensive and less automated. This is a double-edged sword in oz, because TAAATS, a big shiny computer that can do things amazing, requires a lot of prompting. Once your details are in there, it's great. But for you to just pop-up, a controller (who is also controlling, doing Flight Service, and the asistant job) has to basically do a flight plan on his console and enter it into the system for you. As a one-off, that might be OK, but it is very time and attention consuming, and he cannot regulate his workload. If it's a nice day, any number of guys might pop-up in a 10 minute period, and he still has to wear all his other hats, some of which are a higher priority (such as seperating). U.S. controllers don't wear various hats, they are specialised because of the volumes they are working, and have that huge infrastructure to do the other jobs.Clearances into class C airport don't require flightplans and almost always get approved Is this now clearer why? The U.S. controller just jots your details on a strip, his co-ordinator starts co-ord, his flight data (assistant) enters data and your in. Some of these tasks are made easier in oz by TAAATS, but you have the hurdle that is step 1 (many-hat-wearing controller manually entering plan) as previously mentioned.I'm not sure why the aussie system can't work like this The oz system has been stripped down to save money (FS gone, Data's gone, computerised briefing etc). The controller cannot just jot details on a piece of paper anymore. In addition (and this is a key point), the U.S. charges differently. Their system is payed for out of consolidated revenue. In oz AsA is run as a "business" which pays a dividend to the govt. This is a crucial factor in much of how the airspace is run. It is essentially a large billing system. This is an aspect of airspace that no-one high up wants mentioned. If they were serious about solving the "GA malaise", this is the aspect they would address.

2nd Dec 2003, 04:44

But for you to just pop-up, a controller (who is also controlling, doing Flight Service, and the asistant job) has to basically do a flight plan on his console and enter it into the system for you.

OK, so I take it a plan makes things easier. So why are plans so darned complicated???

If all I had to do was give you type, time, where from and altitude I could lodge a plan in 1 minute. By phone even.

But we still seem to be stuck with a form demanding detail all the way up to a rivet count.

Why is that.


2nd Dec 2003, 05:04
That is all you need to give us


YBCG 2200 A090DCT

Goes in in that order pretty much as well (cept the G is at the bottom and we need the rego at the end to make sure you pay for your service). Many operators do it by phone. There is even a special number for it!

Here to Help
2nd Dec 2003, 05:26
Aussie Andy,

One data point does not cut it mate
That "data point" is two people dead.

What that accident shows is that see and avoid is not 100% successful. The next line of defence in our new airspace in Class E is TCAS/Controller alerts, and unfortunately that comes down to whether the transponder is working or on. With no radar it is just down to TCAS (if fitted). Because radio frequencies are not denoted or delineated, listening out or making broadcasts will probably not be a factor.

Everyone knows that see and avoid is not 100% successful - it is a human limitation.

Everyone knows that transponders are not 100% reliable - it is a human and mechanical limitation.

Everyone knows that IFR and VFR traffic can cross paths on climb and descent to hemispherical levels - it is probability.

These are the three holes that need to line up for a collision in Class E Airspace. As an ATC I see the last two happen nearly every day. I also get pilots never sighting an aircraft I've given a radar position on. All it takes is for these three to line up. And, outside of radar coverage with no TCAS, there is only one line of defence.

In Class C airspace, a VFR aircraft will be known to the system, it will be radar or procedurally separated from other traffic. It is only when the ATC system fails (multiple layers of defence), and when the VFR enters without a clearance, that we get to the same level of protection in Class E.

There is less risk of collision in Class C than in Class E. NAS2b replaced some Class C with E. NAS2b, in that airspace, is less safe. A comparison with the US is not required to establish this fact.

2nd Dec 2003, 05:39
Tobzalp do you see how complex that can be for a private owner. Clearly this is the cause of the downturn in the GA sector.

We need to "simplify" those complex processes to make them more "accessible" this will invigorate GA once more. In concert with the NAS "reforms" of course.

2nd Dec 2003, 05:47
How many of you saw this on the weekend?

link broken :confused:

Col. Walter E. Kurtz
2nd Dec 2003, 05:50
I have a GREAT way to rejuvenate GA.

Plenty of work in RETRAINING, if the posts by PPL's on these forums are anything to go by.

Can't flight plan, can't talk on radio, can't monitor more than one radio frequency.......:ugh:

2nd Dec 2003, 06:00
Snarek & Icarus2001,

Why do we have the flight notification form? It's called "International harmonisation"! Heard that term before?

We once had a form that allowed you to lodge details and it was actually useful during flight. The same ill informed amateur that has given us NAS is the same one who pushed us down the path of "that's the way they do it at ICAO" [email protected] when it comes to everything we do.

Start asking yourselves a few pertinent questions in regards to the following:

Who pushed the "user pays" argument?
Who is behind the blind following of ICAO airspace regardless of it's suitability?
Who was at the helm when AOPA began it's slipperry slope to irrelevance?
Who was behind the numerous failed airspace reforms that have cost the industry (you, user payer, you) millions of dollars?

But you just keep comin" back for more!
Tell me where are the savings in NAS? The question keeps getting asked and the silence is deafening.

Chief galah
2nd Dec 2003, 06:01
Whenever we get a change to instructions, or new instructions, no matter how minor, we have to sign it off as read and understood. It's a CASA requirement.

All ATC's will have to sign off 2b one way or another.

A big change like 2b should ensure all pilots that use the system acknowledge the education package and sign it off as understood. If CASA are serious about it's implementation, this should be a minimum requirement.

We do it, it's not too much to expect the other side to do it as well, especially those who are supposed to benefit by it.


2nd Dec 2003, 10:25
Andy, one point I neglected to raise earlier...

You seem keen for 'Chief Galah' to justify his post with relevant statistics whilst simultaneously ignoring the fact that 'Mooney' provides no empirical backup re his statement that only a 'handful' are opposed to NAS'.

Doesn't that strike you as odd? Further suggestion - find a dictionary and check the relevant definitions of 'subjective' and 'objective'. Just to help you along, I'd suggest you're the first option!

To the ATC guys - thanks for contributing on this topic (this and other threads also) Very impressed with the logical way you present your views, without resorting to the poisonous bitchings common to this forum! Love your work, please keep pushing to ditch this oxymoron of a system.

PS Don't forget to wish us luck!

Mooney Operator
2nd Dec 2003, 11:33
Plenty of work in RETRAINING, if the posts by PPL's on these forums are anything to go by.

Who do you think trained a lot of these PPL's, who needed to get their hours up to get into the airlines? :)

Col. Walter E. Kurtz
2nd Dec 2003, 12:29
You can lead a horse to water...........

Mooney Operator
2nd Dec 2003, 13:15
You can lead a horse to water...........

True, but this all depends on if they where being lead in the first place by their leader (instructor). They only follow, as good as the leader leads, through example. :)

Col. Walter E. Kurtz
2nd Dec 2003, 14:27
Mooney Driver, that's got to be one of the funniest things I have read on these posts for a long time!:ok:

The reality is something more like, some people shouldn't be flying - period.

Aussie Andy
2nd Dec 2003, 14:37
some people shouldn't be flying - period Ah, bitter and twisted I see...

2nd Dec 2003, 16:03
willadvise Question ,would you dob me in if I happened to give an all stations call on 125.2 as I was abeam Millawa tracking WGT Myrtleford at 9500 after I happen to hear a Dash or whatever cleared to descend FL135 and 50 from AY on track from ML with no known traffic? I know I will be in that area of his track when he passes my altitude.

Would this be prudent for me to be listening out on ML-CEN 125.2? even though I am not expected to. Funny thing How do YOU know which frequency I am monitoring if you wish to tell me that I have mutual traffic? This is the only bit of NAS I dislike. How the hell can I be doing my job if I have to dig around to find the correct freq for the area I'm in. I care not that we cannot converse anymore. BUT I do care that I am on the same freq at the same time as you guys!

Question is, do you realy care?(Thats a silly question...I KNOW you do!) I know I care and I WILL be listening out on the appropriate ATS freq for the area (once I can find it:ok: )



PS BEWARE I have got my licence:E

Gunner B12
2nd Dec 2003, 17:03
I'll try that link again

try this (http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,5744,8004159%255E23349,00.html)

Col. Walter E. Kurtz
2nd Dec 2003, 18:30
Where is the documentation that supports this?

Anderson maintains that the new system is both safe and proven. "It has been subjected to rigorous safety analysis by Airservices Australia and the Civil Aviation Safety Authority, with both of these agencies satisfied that the changes are safe," he says.

And this?

The Government says this means air travel in Australia has never been safer.

2nd Dec 2003, 19:09
CVR transcript PSA182, San Diego California

Captain (radio): Lindbergh, PSA182 downwind.
Tower: PSA182, Lindbergh tower, ah, traffic twelve o'clock one mile a Cessna.
F/O: Flaps five.
Captain: Is that the one we're looking at?
F/O: Yeah, but I don't see him now.
Captain (radio): Okay, we had it there a minute ago.
Tower: One eighty two, roger.
Captain (radio): I think he's passed to our right.
Tower: Yeah.
Captain: He was right over here a minute ago.
Tower: How far are you going to take your downwind? Company traffic is waiting for departure.
Captain (radio): Ah, probably about 3 to 4 miles.
Tower: Okay, PSA182, cleared to land.
Captain (radio): One eighty-two's cleared to land.
F/O: Are we clear of that Cessna?
F/E: Suppose to be.
Captain: I guess.
Jumpseat: I hope.
Captain: Oh yeah, before we turned downwind, I saw him about one o'clock, probably behind us now.
F/O: There's one underneath. I was looking at that inbound there!
Captain: Whoop!
F/O: Argghh!
Cabin: [sound of impact with the Cessna in mid-air]
Captain: Easy baby, easy baby. What have we got here?
F/O: Its bad. We're hit man, we are hit.
Captain (radio): Tower, we are going down, this is PSA...
Tower: Okay, we'll call the equipment for you.
Cabin: [sound of stall warning]


After collision with the Cessna, the PSA plummeted to the ground in a residential area of San Diego. All 135 passengers and crew of the PSA died, along with the pilot of the Cessna and 9 people on the ground.

Cause of the accident: the crew of PSA182 failed to adequately See and Avoid the Cessna..............

2nd Dec 2003, 20:08
If you are going to start quoting mid-air collisions - then you are going to have to start quoting the more pertanent runway incursion accidents that seem to be the major risk in aviation today. They are a lot scarier - and when they happen - it's on a bigger scale (eg - Tenerife). This is relevant because the new airspace changes are supposed to be taking the focus away from airspace not within the immediate vicinity of major aerodromes - so that controllers may monitor busy aerodromes more closely (in theory anyway).

2nd Dec 2003, 20:20
thanks for that detailed response. I'm sorry I've been thinking less of the aussie controllers until now, glad to see it's the system and not the people. While I got ya, do you know if the separation standards are different for aircraft in the two countries for class C/B airspace?

2nd Dec 2003, 21:18
...... is exactly what we are trying to avoid.

The PSA182 accident occurred after the crew had received “DIRECTED Traffic information” and reported sighting the Cessna. AusNAS gives you less than that!

In E:- NAS won’t give you DTI (RIS) outside radar coverage!. Eyes and TCAS (If you are lucky enough to have it?) are all you got!.

In C:- You had full separation!. Eyes and TCAS were the second tier safety net, a fall back!. (Rarely needed!).

To the few NAS supporters and those at AOPA who bought this pup!

If reading the CVR transcript does not sharpen your focus and raise a hair or two on the back of your neck, then perhaps this infamous photo might:- :( PSA182 (http://www.airdisaster.com/photos/psa182/photo.shtml) :(
NOT A SCARE CAMPAIGN!:mad: ............A SAD REALITY!:ugh:

3rd Dec 2003, 04:05
Blair - Runway incidents do have a huge potential for disaster and they are an issue that demands attention (and get it). NAS will increase this potential with the new CTAFs because with reduced or nil R/T there will probably be a few tractors/cars and work-people getting clobbered on runways by aircraft landing or taking off.

I appreciate that we may be considering Apples and Bananas here but the greatest hazard is (was) Violation of Controlled (restricted) Airspace (VCA). This is the largest ICEBERG by far.

These are, statistically, the most reported incidents and are the most under-reported. What that means is that there are so many of them that they are either not reported due to ATC/pilots having the time or inclination to do so or are not reported because of complacency from an ineffective, historical, response to fix up the problem.

NAS will drastically reduce the incidence of VCA's because it takes out one significant factor - VFR and increases another - E airspace. The result is a cosmetic reduction in the problem of (especially) VFR aircraft straying into airspace that provides protection from other airspace users.

NAS will increase the statistics of air safety because it fiddles, quite effectiveley, with the status of airspace, rules and procedures to change the issue from what is safe or not safe to what is legal or normal. This effect will increase with further stages of NAS with the changes of status of resticted airspace and danger areas.

Heck when this is complete we probably will have solved the VCA problem completely and safety statistics will be accordingly improved.

Y' all be careful out there now!!!!!!!!!!!

3rd Dec 2003, 05:13
Druglord, you should not be sorry for thinking that way. Aussie controllers have been bludging for so long, that even a slight increase in their exceedingly light workload, is percieved to be "an overload" :rolleyes: Friggin bone please..:zzz: Several mistakes were made by the controllers that contributed to the PSA 182 collision: ATC did not restrict PSA 182 to 4000 ft over Montgomery as required, ATC radar seperation was not used when it was available, ATC conflict alert was not conveyed to pilots, ATC were not proactive to evident loss of visual on traffic by PSA 182.

3rd Dec 2003, 05:49

Standards applied in C/B airspace in US the same as here, except between VFR and IFR where they have the concept of "target resolution". I understand this means they pass traffic and don't let the radar symbols overlap. It was to be implemented here on 27NOV, but is now in stage 3. Don't know why.

Everybody picking on Tobzalp about ICAO FPL, including that [email protected] Winstun:

How much simpler can it be? We have a standard ICAO flight plan system, like US & Europe. By this definition we CAN'T make it any simpler, formwise. Regardless of this, when somebody gives me a FPL in the air, (and it happens, and I take them unless I really am doing something else that a reasonable set of workload priorities says should take precedence,) and doesn't give me all I need or gives me stuff that's obviously wrong I just ask for what I need. It's what I did when I used to work breifing also. The ONLY pilot I can recall that ever "arced up" when prompted for more detail was DICK SMITH, "I designed this system so I don't have to tell you that," was his farcical response...


If it was such a crime for the ATC in that incident to use visual separation why are you such an ardent supporter of NAS? The project has already introduced procedures that give PILOTS the opportunity to abandon current separation standards if they believe in the power of windows, and will introduce more IN ALL CLASSES OF AIRSPACE in later stages.

Nobody here in the big white box is frightened of more workload. Bring it on. Even a pea-brain like yourself must understand that more workload means more ATC sectors. But, hang on, NAS is supposed to REDUCE workload and SAVE money isn't it. Maybe if you tone down the sarcasm we could find out what it is you want out of life:rolleyes:

What you are saying is that because VFR continue to blunder through airspace they shouldn't we will adopt that as the system? Because kiddies won't use the school crossing and run across the road, we'll retire the Lollipop-Lady and encourage kiddies to run across the road anywhere, dramatically reducing the fatalities at school crossings...

3rd Dec 2003, 06:58
My favourite part was when Whingestun said something stupid.

3rd Dec 2003, 07:24

I am sorry that my message was misunderstood by you (and possibly others).

The point I am making is that NAS masks the problem of violations of airspace. The reason for this is that NAS provides for more e airspace and less c airspace and in the future will see reductions in R and D areas.

NAS authorises flight in E and R areas that will be warning areas in the future, by VFR (by intent or otherwise) without airways clearance and therefore the statistics of VCA's will decrease. This will be used by the supporters of NAS to indicate a safer system by default.

Smoke and mirrors mate!

3rd Dec 2003, 12:04
I think RTB RFN has made a very interesting point. Nothing better than decreased VCA statistics to prove their point!


taking the focus away from airspace not within the immediate vicinity of major aerodromes - so that controllers may monitor busy aerodromes more closely (in theory anyway).

You have got to be kidding! Think carefully about the nonsense statement you have been fed here. The aerodromes with a tower still have a tower, nothing has changed. How will the controllers monitor busy aerodromes more closely? It is nonsense. The sort of hyperbole dished out in press releases to an apathetic (understandably) public who have no idea of the issues involved. For goodness sake most of the posters on here do not seem to understand the issues that well.

It all sounds great to focus on the circuit area coms and the idea that more people will be on right frequency but the climb and descent is where the problem lies for the higher performance aircraft. Think about it, long and hard.

Aussie Andy
3rd Dec 2003, 14:46
How will the controllers monitor busy aerodromes more closely?This has been suggested in the context of E over D where the TWR was responsible for the rpeviously overlying C (e.g. YBAS).but the climb and descent is where the problem lies for the higher performance aircraftThe suggestion is that the risks are increasingly greater the closer you get to the airfield, where the D airspace is.

Andy :ok:

Islander Jock
3rd Dec 2003, 15:01
Is it just me or is Winstun p1ssiing everyone else off with his inane windup posts. :ugh:

This is a serious debate which is affecting different types of ops in different ways. The last thing we need is this frigging fool piping up to do nothing else but drop the occasional inflamatory, uninformed and unnecessary comment.

Woomera, please consider red carding this pr1ck.

3rd Dec 2003, 17:14
Trawling the NTSB database..........

The following intends to highlight the lack of efficacy in the “See and Avoid” principal.

If you are interested in a look, click on this link:-

NTSB Database search (http://www.ntsb.gov/ntsb/query.asp#query_start)

- Click on "database query"
- Scroll down and where it says (Enter your word string below: (This option will slow the query performance)) type in

midair collision and then submit!

Reading some of them made my blood run cold (58 records for 98-2003):uhoh: :sad:
Apparently the FAA has a much bigger data base of the same as the NTSB does not investigate all incidents.
These 3 are bad enough!!!

NTSB Identification: ANC00IA088. The docket is stored in the (offline) NTSB Imaging System.
Scheduled 14 CFR Part 121: Air Carrier (D.B.A. ALASKA AIRLINES)
Incident occurred Tuesday, July 11, 2000 in ANCHORAGE, AK
Probable Cause Approval Date: 2/20/02
Aircraft: McDonnell Douglas MD-82, registration: N935AS
Injuries: 107 Uninjured.


On July 11, 2000, about 1138 Alaska daylight time, the crew of N935AS, a McDonnell Douglas MD-82 airplane, reported a near midair collision, about 15 miles north of the Ted Stevens International Airport, Anchorage, Alaska. The flight was being conducted under Title 14, CFR Part 121, as a scheduled domestic passenger flight, operated by Alaska Airlines as Flight 131. There were no injuries to the two pilots, three flight attendants, or the 102 passengers aboard. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the Ted Stevens International Airport, and an instrument flight plan had been filed. The flight originated about 0900 Pacific daylight time from the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, Seattle, Washington.

During a telephone conversation with the National Transportation Safety Board investigator-in-charge on July 17, the captain of the MD-82 stated that during approach to the Ted Stevens International Airport, approach control was providing radar vectors in order to intercept the localizer for runway 14. He said that during the initial part of the approach, while descending through 4,000 feet msl, instrument meteorological conditions (IMC) prevailed. The captain stated that approach control cleared him to descend to 3,000 feet msl, on a heading of 160 degrees, and reported that there was traffic about 1 mile to the southwest, with an indicated altitude of 2,500 feet msl. The captain said that as he started to level the airplane at 3,000 feet msl, and as the airplane descended below the clouds, he immediately saw a twin-engine airplane climbing from 2,500 feet toward his airplane. He said that he had very little time to react before the twin-engine airplane passed to the left and below of his airplane, about 500 feet horizontally, and 200 feet vertically. At the time of the incident both airplanes were operating in Class E airspace.

The captain added that his airplane's traffic alert and collision avoidance system (TCAS) was inoperative at the time of the incident. Subsequently, no collision avoidance alert was provided to the crew of the MD-82.

A review of approach control records revealed that the twin engine Piper Seneca, N39522, was not in contact with approach control, nor was it required to be.

During a telephone conversation with the National Transportation Safety Board investigator-in-charge on July 14, the designated FAA pilot examiner aboard the second airplane involved in the near midair collision incident, reported that he was conducting a multi-engine check ride at the time of the incident. He said that cloud conditions in the area were scattered, with higher clouds to the north of his location. He added that he was able to use a large open area that was clear of clouds. He said that just after completing one of the required maneuvers, about 3,000 msl, and about one-half mile away from the cloud bank, an Alaska Airline MD-82 suddenly appeared from out of the clouds on the right side of his airplane. He added that the MD-82 was about 800 feet above his airplane as it passed from the right to the left.

A review of air-ground radio communications tapes maintained by the FAA at the Anchorage TRACON revealed that the controller advised the MD-82 pilot that there was conflicting traffic, about one mile southwest of his location, headed in a northwesterly direction, and that the altitude was indicating 2,500 feet. About 20 seconds later the pilot of the MD-82 reported to the controller, in part: "...ha, that was pretty close on that traffic."

NTSB Identification: NYC99IA036 . The docket is stored in the (offline) NTSB Imaging System.
Scheduled 14 CFR Part 129: Foreign CANADIAN AIRLINES
Incident occurred Tuesday, December 08, 1998 in NEW YORK, NY
Probable Cause Approval Date: 4/20/00
Aircraft: Boeing 737, registration: GCPX
Injuries: 52 Uninjured.

On December 8, 1998, about 1725 eastern standard time, a Boeing 737, C-GCPX, operated by Canadian Airlines International Ltd. as Flight 528, experienced a near midair collision while maneuvering to land at La Guardia Airport, New York, New York. The airplane was not damaged, and the 2 flight crewmembers, 4 flight attendants, and 46 passengers were not injured. Instrument meteorological conditions prevailed and an Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) flight plan had been filed for the scheduled passenger flight that was conducted under 14 CFR Part 129.

According to the duty chief dispatcher for Canadian Airlines, the Boeing 737 was on downwind for La Guardia's runway 4, at 4,000 feet msl, when the crew caught a glimpse of three lights. The lights were red, white, green, and aligned vertically with the red light on the bottom.

The duty chief dispatcher added that the first officer saw the other airplane and had enough time to realize they were not going to collide, but not enough time to execute an evasive maneuver. In addition, the airplane's traffic alert collision avoidance system went from "TRAFFIC" to "MONITOR VERTICAL SPEED" to "CLEAR OF CONFLICT" in approximately 2 seconds.

According to the Federal Aviation Administration's Preliminary Pilot Deviation Report, the other airplane was a Cessna 172, IFR, at 5,000 feet msl. The pilot of that airplane apparently saw the Boeing 737 at his 12 O'clock position and perceived it to be at the same altitude. To avoid a perceived collision, the Cessna pilot executed a descent, and at 4,000 feet MSL, the two airplanes passed 0 feet vertically and 500 feet horizontally from one another.

NTSB Identification: LAX98FA086A. The docket is stored in the (offline) NTSB Imaging System.
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Wednesday, February 11, 1998 in MORGAN HILL, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 4/20/00
Aircraft: Beech J35, registration: N8343D
Injuries: 1 Fatal, 4 Uninjured.

A flight of two military helicopters was on a northerly heading while N8343D was on a converging northwesterly heading at the same altitude. There were no indications that the occupants of either aircraft saw each other prior to colliding in midair. The crew of the second helicopter saw the airplane approaching, but did not have time to radio a warning. After the collision, the airplane entered an uncontrolled descent. The helicopter pilot made a precautionary, run-on landing, and made an emergency shutdown. The 5 feet 2 inch airplane pilot used a pillow, placed on the seat bottom to increase his seated height. The seat did not have a vertical adjustment. The sun was in the southwest quadrant, with scattered clouds and 20 miles visibility. The top and bottom rotating beacons, as well as landing lights of both helicopters were illuminated. The helicopter pilot was flight following, but had not received any conflicting traffic advisories. The airplane pilot was not communicating with ATC. The transponder in the airplane was squawking 1200 but the altitude was reported as erratic and unreliable. The unreliable altitude returns from the airplane disabled the automatic intruder program. The controller did not see the airplane as a primary target because he was busy handling other traffic.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:

The pilot's failure to maintain visual separation from the flight of military helicopters approaching from his left. The pilot's failure to request VFR traffic advisories, to maintain an adequate visual lookout, an erratic transponder, and glare from the sun were factors.

Yup, Safety will be improved:hmm: :hmm:

3rd Dec 2003, 18:40
I'm going to do what I said I would never again do, and that is respond to Winstun the Pooh. He is wrong, wrong, wrong when he says that the controller shouldn't have done what he did, and that he should have been more proactive in separating the aircraft. If you read the full transcript, the controller went to great lengths to explain where the relevant traffic was and only once PSA advised that they had the traffic visual did he, advise the PSA to maintain visual separation from the traffic. You hear from the cockpit voice recorder that subsequent to this, PSA in fact wasn't in visual contact with the traffic and should have advised ATC straight away of this fact. Instead they continued to descend while looking for the traffic. It was the unfortunate pilots who should have been proactive and told ATC of their difficulties and the ATC could have gone to plan B and level off the PSA.

Winstun has always slagged out controllers but from his post he obviously doesn't understand the job and certainly could not do the job. I have in the past suggested he sit with a controller during a morning burst in one of the ATC centres and see whether he still feels the same way about the ATC workload and pressures. Not surprisingly he would prefer to wallow in his ignorance. It should be the other pilots who respect and appreciate what ATC does that set him straight, before he causes a rift between two very proffesional and mutually respecting proffessions.

By the way from working overseas, I can say that yes while Australia is not the busiest place in the world to work as an ATC, the standards of controlling are some of the best in the world, and is only undone at times by unsafe changes to their working conditions, and the resulting constant state of apprehension they find themselves in while trying to keep the skys safe.

3rd Dec 2003, 19:03
Originally posted in D & G General Aviation

I have a CPL, SE\CIR, and around 3000TT. I have a S\E Aircraft fitted with 2 x VHF, 2 x NAV (1 ILS), 1 x ADF, 1 x TXPR, 1 x HF and a Garmin 295. I also have all the other stuff, jackets, ELT x 2, rations, MED kit etc... and I try to be as professional as possible.

I flew VFR into Horn Island from Cairns several times this year. My customer liked me to arrive at 0000z, the same time as the Dash 8, ex Cairns is scheduled to arrive. I used the same tracking points as the IFR guys, and I used the same frequencies as they did. I self separated with the Dash 8 / Metro RPT services on many occasions, both on arrival and departure. A couple of times I even called them first, or included their callsign in my BROADCAST, because I knew they were in the area. On more than a few occasions there may have been separation conflicts had we not been aware of each other. Usually separation was enabled using GPS distances.

This all seemed to work quite nicely! :cool:

I like to fly IFR when I can for several reasons, recency, more service, not being treated like a hick etc. I had planned on flying IFR as often as possible after 27/11, if only so everyone else knows I'm there. But what can I do when conducting passenger charters in my single engine aeroplane?

Should I tell my pax that our Government doesn't consider them IMPORTANT enough to be included in the system, or me COMPETENT enough? :mad:

Two Dogs


3rd Dec 2003, 20:15
Good God, Two Dogs! Haven't you got it yet?

You have committed the cardinal sin - that of trying or expecting to operate in our airspace as part of an inclusive system.

Remember the sixties - Tune in, turn on and drop out? Well this is the oughties - Tune out, turn off and dumb down. With potentially spectacular results, of course.

But why do you ask....?

(I covet your handle - how much booze would it cost to buy it?)

Edited for clothhanded typing skills )twice :) )

3rd Dec 2003, 21:03
Thanks again for the insightful replies from the controllers. How about flight following? Any of you familiar with the american flight following system? I think it's superb for VFR pilots and it gives them someone to talk to in emergencies and traffic that they wouldn't get otherwise, or is this what RAS currently does?

3rd Dec 2003, 21:18
Druglord. Flight following? That would be something that they have in America. Oh hang on we have the American system complete with flight following don't we. Don't we?

4th Dec 2003, 05:45
ANS, ATC did not level off PSA 182 at 4000 ft over Montgomery, it was the correct procedure, should be plan A.
CVR transcript after PSA 182 had reported traffic in sight to approach and switched over:
Captain (radio): Lindbergh, PSA182 downwind.
Tower: PSA182, Lindbergh tower, ah, traffic twelve o'clock one mile a Cessna.
Captain (radio): Okay, we had it there a minute ago.
Tower: One eighty two, roger.

I have nothing against controllers at all, and have visited ATC centers and towers on 6 continents. the standards of controlling are some of the best in the world..:ooh:
In the wise words of a now famous retiring United captain...try:second best in the world..the best?....the rest of the world..:p

4th Dec 2003, 05:45
Druglord: Flight following is in stage 3 mate. Personally I don't understand it, we have a form on the console we have to fill out if a VFR talks on "our" frequencies (and, OZBUSDRIVER, I have no intention of putting anything on ours, but somebody has already indicated an aircraft called MGC has been politically whinging & whining, but this may be apocryphal.) Yet at some time in the future when the VFR have been weaned off talking on the radio they will be cordially invited to come back and get the sort of service they lost in 1991 (in radar coverage anyhow) :confused: :confused: :confused:

27. An on-request radar flight following service for VFR aircraft will be available on a sector specific and workload-permitting basis.

34. An on-request radar flight following service for VFR aircraft will be available on a sector specific and workload permitting basis.

What seems even stranger is that at the same time we are supposed to start offering the services we have denied VFR for over a decade we will WITHDRAW the same service to IFR:confused: :confused: :confused:

30. Directed traffic information services for en-route IFR aircraft will be withdrawn.

The history of NAS so far is that anything that is deemed unworkable or unimplementable even by the NASIG is deferred to a later NAS stage or reinterpreted repeatedly untill "somebody" is happy. Sooner or later they'll run out of stages....

Piper Arrow
4th Dec 2003, 13:13

Union scaremongering with near miss reports: Anderson December 4, 2003 - 11:36AM

A union was today accused of scaremongering over claims a plane was within 20 seconds of a mid-air disaster near Melbourne.

Transport Minister John Anderson said the claim was horrendous.

He said it was simply one of more than 60 incidents from the past week since new airspace rules took effect that would be reported to the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB).

Ted Lang, president of the air traffic controllers union Civil Air, claimed Virgin flight DJ980 from the Gold Coast to Melbourne was believed to be 20 seconds from colliding with a twin-engine Cessna yesterday when an alarm was triggered yesterday as it was descending north-west of Melbourne.

Mr Anderson said he could not guarantee there would never be a mid-air crash but said the government would not have implemented the new system if it did not believe it was safe.

"Can I guarantee there will never be an incident? No I can't, of course I can't," he said.

"You can't guarantee wherever human beings are involved, wherever mechanical contrivances are involved, total and absolute safety, you can't."

He described claims of a near miss by the union representing air traffic controllers and Mr Lang, as outrageous. :(

"I hear all of this irresponsible talk about close collisions and 20 seconds and so forth," Mr Anderson said.

"The ATSB has a responsibility now to investigate it.

"This happened in controlled airspace , :ok: all the scaremongering that Ted Lang's been engaging in has been about uncontrolled airspace. :ok:

"The aircraft, both of them were in contact with the tower."

Mr Anderson said he believed the new airspace system would enhance safety.

"A lot of this centres on so called incidents and it is horrendous to describe something as a near miss when a responsible person knows full well that an incident does not constitute a near miss."

Mr Anderson said there were around 50 incidents reported each week and this had risen to more than 60 in the week since the new rules were introduced.

Earlier, Virgin Blue spokesman David Huttner said the airline would consider in its investigation whether the new National Airspace System was to blame. But he said anyone speculating on the possible cause of the incident "would be doing so without all the facts".

Mr Huttner cast doubt the claim that the aircraft were only 20 seconds from crashing. "Certainly at this point in time nobody has all the facts to make such a statement. It's speculative at best."


4th Dec 2003, 15:13
I have a colour brochure from the FAA re their program to redesign their NAS. The brochure says (capitals are my emphasis):The basic structure of the airspace has not changed appreciably for many years. During the time that airspace has remained essentially static, aircraft and technology have advanced several generations. These advances create the need and the opportunity to RESTRUCTURE the airspace to meet the EVOLVING NEEDS OF A DIVERSE POPULATION OF CUSTOMERS andWe are focused and committed to MODERNIZING the nation's airspace. The FAA now has, within a single organisation, all the elements necessary to manage the national airspace effectively and efficiently. Through a major modernisation and beyond, we are COMMITTED TO WORKING WITH ALL ELEMENTS OF OUR DIVERSE CUSTOMER COMMUNITY to create the airspace of our future. But wait, there's more from http://www1.faa.gov/ats/ata/index.html:
The FAA’s Office of Air Traffic Airspace Management (ATA) IS WORKING WITH NAS users and service providers, using available airspace, facilities and equipment, and calculating future use of these resources to improve efficiency and reduce delays. and Each of the ATA divisional functions, working together as an integrated team, ALONG WITH OTHER ORGANIZATIONS, AGENCIES AND USERS, will ensure the logical and efficient use of the national airspace. These quote raise 2 questions in my mind:

1. Uncle Dick told us that the US of A had the world's BEST and most MODERN airspace system. Clearly, that's not the case as many of the FAA's proposed airspace restructuring initiatives have been a feature of Australian airspace design for over 10 years; and

2. If the FAA considers it necessary to consult with agencies and users, why hasn't the Australian ARG/NASIG done the same (Don't bother replying, as I already know the answer)? If we are to have a complete replica of the US airspace model, then that also entails the establishment of the appropriate procedural and consultation framework, the provision of enhanced radar and communications coverage and THE RETURN OF Flight Service!

What have you got to say Minister Anderson and Dick?