View Full Version : Trouble Brewing at CitiExpress

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Sheikh Zabik
29th Sep 2004, 07:01
Following recent rejection by an overwhelming majority of 2.5% pay offer (first pay rise in 4 years for many) CX management are trying to reassert their authority by bully boy tactics.

Having lost the goodwill of his workforce latest antic of TDF is the suspension of a Captain for refusing to go into discretion to complete a duty.

Anyone else come across this?

As for CX.................Obviously situation normal.

29th Sep 2004, 07:13
Suspension for refusing to go into discretion.............................the CAA will be pleased about that one.

I do hope someone has told them, very clearly.

29th Sep 2004, 07:49
Suspension for refusing to go into discretion.............................the CAA will be pleased about that one
Flaps and Sheikh - unfortunately the CAA may not be as 'helpful' as you expect, depending on circumstance. It is, no doubt, probably over-simplifying the issue here, but a captain cannot 'refuse' to operate into discretion. Having taken ALL the circumstances and condition of the crew into account, he may consider it unsafe to exercise his discretionary powers, but a straightforward 'refusal' WILL lead to tears :( . No member of crew can simply 'refuse' to extend duty - they would have to be 'unfit' to operate safely, and that is the captain's call. This also applies to operations INSIDE FDP. This is why 'discretion' after reduced rest is NOT a good idea. Any company is entitled to a REASONABLE expectation that a properly rested crew will be able to extend. When I have 'been there' I have always made it clear to my crew that they are expected to extend UNLESS THEY ARE UNFIT TO DO SO - and that is obviously something any company will want to examine later.

How the CAA see it will depend on the circumstances. In my former experience there was a 'story' about a CP who sent a telex to an outstation ordering the captain to extend. That they SHOULD leap onto!

Good luck to the captain. Suggest he reads this?

Stan Woolley
29th Sep 2004, 08:04
Sorry BOAC but that is absolute rubbish.

It is commanders discretion, not ops, fleet captain or anyone else. They may disagree with the decision but the authority is solely in the hands of the commander on the day.

29th Sep 2004, 08:04

Whilst that may have been the case when flying boats were around you are wrong now.

Your comments re not fit etc are correct but no-one can force you to extend your duty past Scheme limits and you can "refuse".

Indeed in BA if you chose to limit your duty to Industrial (BLR's), as the cabin crew do every time, then you would be within your rights. Sure you would be in for tea and biscuits but along with your friendly BALPA rep they couldn't touch you.

This is even more important now as they are regularly rostering Scarebus to max FTL limits with terminal changes etc. You are looking at discretion before your first push of the day.
Discretion is just that. Yours.
1.Tired or
2.just can't be bothered or
3.you want to make a point.

In BA 1 is possible 2 improbable and 3 becoming more common.

However the right to refuse is just that.

Good luck to the guy involved. I hope he's a BALPA member and not a "I've given myself a 1% rise" merchant.
If you are a member Dental Flosse has got a problem.

I bet he hasn't done it to a BA secondee. He wouldn't dare.


29th Sep 2004, 08:27
I do not think either of you have read my post properly. I am trying to help the captain. I would have hoped you can both understand that.

N_N, just be very careful with your reasons 2 and 3, or I think your wonderful career (and pension prospects :D ) will be threatened. I think you fail to see that in the days of Imperial Airways the captain WAS a respected person, and a 'refusal' would not have been questioned. Now with the help of certain parts of our community our status has been somewhat reduced, and covering of the nether regions becomes vital. The issue of BA LHR cabin crew and FDP etc is so bizarre as to render sensible discussion of the subject pointless, and illustrates this point precisely. It is the BA pilot force that have 'accepted' it, too, remember.

PS: N_N, the closest I have been to flying boats is a Lake Buccaneer:D

29th Sep 2004, 08:53
We need more information. Broadly I support BOAC's point that the word refuse is likely to get you in trouble with an employer because it smacks of unreasonable behaviour and that is tied up in basic expectations of a contract.

To decline to extend a duty because it is not safe is very different and should be supported by the CAA and BALPA.

More Info anyone? Rgds BP

Stan Woolley
29th Sep 2004, 08:58

It is, no doubt, probably over-simplifying the issue here, but a captain cannot 'refuse' to operate into discretion.

N_N, just be very careful with your reasons 2 and 3, or I think your wonderful career (and pension prospects ) will be threatened.

Sorry old bean but I did read your post very carefully.

You say you are probably over simplifying the issue - on the contrary you are over complicating it.

The whole point with reference to the second quote above is that you don't have to give anybody any reason for refusing, just say politely.......' I'm sorry but I am not prepared to exercise my discretion to extend the duty'

If they persist just ask them to show you where is says you have to explain your decision - quite simply you don't!

You may read this as an unreasonable attitude, but believe me I have worked for a company which rapidly lost me my health as a result of appalling rostering. We have precious few weapons with which to defend ourselves as it is, so I feel very strongly about defending the few rights we still have.

Put it this way if Balpa can't kick this quickly into touch I ask you what can they defend?

29th Sep 2004, 08:59

I have read your post and fully undertand it. However I disagree with it.

Obviously if you choose not to go into discretion then the easiest way is to cite fatigue/not fit etc etc.

However my point is I can refuse to go into discretion for whatever reason and there is sweet FA they can do about it.

It happened recently on an Airbus. The captain was rostered to max scheme and went over before first push.He informed the company he would not be operating sector 3 about 5 hours before he was due to. The service was cancelled. He was invited for a chat which came to nothing and BA have been informed by BALPA in no uncertain terms as to what will happen if anyone gets penalised for this sort of action.

The erosion of our status (particularly in BA) is evident.
We do generally keep the show on the road unlike our work-shy collegues down the back, but occasionally we remind the company just who is in charge.


29th Sep 2004, 09:03
Just to put this whole thing in perspective:

I, and a number of my colleagues have, on more than one occasion, declined to exercise commander's discretion to extend an FDP. I have never been so much as questioned over my decision. BACX is a very professional outfit, and I would expect no less.

Had I been asked for my reasons, I hope I would have some valid points to make. Neither accepting, nor refusing, discretion should be taken lightly!

I have however overheard some captains (perhaps like N_N) who have said words to the effect of "I don't 'do' discretion"

I have no knowledge whatever of this incident, however if it falls into the second category, which almost amounts to a unilateral 'work to rule', then in my humble opinion the individual would deserve a reality check. I can't imagine any responsible manager in any airline accepting such a situation, nor many of the inconvenienced passengers!

As I say, I may be barking up the wrong tree, but this isn't the first time discretion has been declined in BACX, so I wonder why this one is different?

If it WAS a unilateral work to rule, the guy just has to wind his neck in, and change his story!


If I am able to accept or decline commander's discretion, does that give you any clues as to whether I hold a licence?

Why do you swear so much?

Do let us know what LCG says when you turn down discretion saying you "want to make a point"

29th Sep 2004, 09:13
I'm 100% in agreement with "BOAC" on this one. The reason for having this clause in the regulations is simply to put into place a structure to prevent companies from forcing fatigued or unfit crews to fly or work unreasonably long hours. It is also there to permit duties and rotations to be completed, following unforeseen delays or extensions. The spirit of the rule needs to be applied and anyone using it to rush home to make the party in time is simply abusing the system. In my airline, anyone refusing to extend under unforeseeable circumstances is given the opportunity to consult the company doctor. Most of our crews do appear to interpret the rule this way however, I have noticed on occasion that our British crews do appear to do a lot more complaining with regards duty extension than anyone else.

Stan Woolley
29th Sep 2004, 09:18
Well guys as you can see from DEOnes post the '.....spirit of the rule.....' is alive and well ........when it applies to crews behaving reasonably!!:rolleyes: :rolleyes: :mad:

29th Sep 2004, 09:20
Actually DEOne, as far as "anyone using it to rush home to make the party in time" is concerned, I'm sure important social engagements are accepted as a valid reason for refusing discretion.

29th Sep 2004, 09:22
I have however overheard some captains (perhaps like N_N)

I've come across you and your pomposity before.

As it happens I have never refused to go into discretion and have endevoured to keep the operation going in contrast to the fodder I have to put up with behind the flight deck door.

I'm not sure about your licence position and couldn't really care.

LCG can say what he wants. We have a contract and industrial muscle to back it up.
Also if you have the ability to process information after your eyes have seen it you will recall that an Airbus captain did just that. He refused discretion 5 hours or so before he got near it. To make a point about stupid rostering.

As for swearing if you want I can send you a personal message without the.

Now run along and let the big boys discuss this sensibly, theres a good boy.


Edit: N_N - you have not, apparently, bothered to read PPRuNe's new edict on swearing. We don't allow it anymore - disguised or otherwise. You can send any amount of PM's with as much swearing as you like. But please refrain from using it on PPRuNe.

29th Sep 2004, 09:26
n my airline, anyone refusing to extend under unforeseeable circumstances is given the opportunity to consult the company doctor.

Good grief where do you work ? I want to make sure I never to go anywhere near it.

Sheikh Zabik
29th Sep 2004, 09:51
It seems to me that all anyone has to do is to say "I am not exercising my discretion to extend a duty as I am feeling tired".....and that is then the end of the matter. That is a completely subjective statement and it is a commander's right to be the sole arbiter of that. What Mr DF and his ilk are doing is to introduce an objective test which puts anyone considering refusing to go into discretion in fear of a disciplinary if he refuses.

With Companies like CX fighting losing battles to sqeeze quarts into pint pots as pilots vote with their feet and rostering become more creative in extracting the legal (?) maximum out of those who remain this sort of pressure is a logical consequence of a regime which has lost the respect of its workforce.

It is mercifully a long time since there has been an incident involving major loss of life in UK airspace. The public have become complacent and take forgranted the very highest standards of safety. Sooner or later there will be an incident. That is inevitable. CX is not alone in trying to extract more and more out of its pilots but fatigue is becoming more and more part of life and those who are trying to push the boundaries forward in order to secure their performance bonuses ought to do some serious soul searching...................

Balpa had better jump on this PDQ................

29th Sep 2004, 10:21
To exercise Commander's discretion requires a reason.

To refuse it, requires no explanation at all.

29th Sep 2004, 10:39
Is N_N an example of a Captain - presumably he is one - these days. Such arrogance from one who swears as well.

You should learn a thing or two, or should have, as the case may be, that you drive a BIG company's aeroplane. They have a job as it is to survive in the current climate as do all airlines but they need people like you like they need a hole in the head.

Discretion is discretion. "The freedom and authority to act as one see's fit" just as MJ points out in CAP 371. But I do not believe that it means a commander should slap the face of an employer with it. To make life difficult, if that is all you are out to do. If you are dog tired and feel that it is unsafe to operate your aeroplane no one can blame you. But if you are exercising 'your right' to prove a point you might just as well go tell the CP to stuff his job - but, naturally, you wouldn't dare. I am not, of course, saying that you do, simply taking up your point that you could do it. After all, you did say "but occasionally we remind the company just who is in charge."

I should control your snide remarks, which are directed at three on here who work for the same company you do. Don't worry, you won't have to operate with them. ;)

But......you never know who might be listening.

Oh btw! Be THANKFUL for the "fodder" at the back!? How very very :sad:

29th Sep 2004, 10:42
There is little point in (my) continuing this discussion since yet again N_N has proved unable to conduct a discussion in 'normal' ways.

Sheikh - I just hope 'your' captain thinks this through carefully. Management have teeth and BALPA are noted for occasionally only supporting cases that they think will succeed. Ask the DanAirs who got 5 figure settlements from BA when BALPA said there was no case, if you are in doubt.

to change a route schedule drastically (enforced by CAA) as the flights were always going into discretion, i.e. could be seen to be "planned" to operate into discretion. - for MJ - you may be thinking about BA LGW and the TLV out-and-back. The CAA said 30% DRs or more and it has to change. It did:D . I have a letter which was 'supported' by the CAA declaring that discretion is to be considered a normal and expected part of FDP. Don't have it to hand, sadly. It is always how the company 'expect' it that is the rub.

let the big boys discuss this sensibly - let's hope, eh?

29th Sep 2004, 10:45
It's very interesting that in all these messages there's barely a mention of the most important element in the whole debate - the passenger. It's he or she that pays our wages - no-one else! Doesn't anybody realise this. or is everyone so narrow-minded!

Everything is me, me, me, me......

29th Sep 2004, 10:52
Thats not fair we at BA and BACX in general always put ourselves and conditions before we consider our passengers. We have many examples of the sucess of this policy.

29th Sep 2004, 11:38
Doesn't anybody realise this.
The day crew realise that, cabin or flight, the weather in Hell will be experiencing a cold snap!


Stan Woolley
29th Sep 2004, 12:01

Well next time I'll be sure to ask the pax if I should continue the flight or not because they are obviously in a better position to know how I feel than I am.

I recently operated a 15hr 40 min two sector duty to get pax home, including just under ten hours flying. Thats on a two pilot wide bodied jet , continuous duty without a break.

Don't even begin to tell me about me,me,me .....you :mad: 's

The ability to unilaterally refuse discretion is there to protect the passengers!!!!!

If half you people are pro pilots it's no wonder the industry is in the pathetic state it is!

29th Sep 2004, 12:04
FlapsOne has it exactly right.

The important words in CAP371 are "may" and "at his discretion". I have never felt unable to continue into discretion (yet), but members of my crew have, and I always choose not to exercise my discretion in those cases.

When faced with the inevitable phone call/tea and biscuits, I just say that I "chose not to exercise my discretion, having taken into account the circumstances of my crew", and decline to discuss those circumstances.

They may rant and threaten, but in the end there is nothing they can do.

29th Sep 2004, 12:26
Jordan, you've obviously posted on the wrong topic, if you read carefully you'd see that all we are talking about is our pax. How capable the crew of the a/c feel they are to safely continue the flight/s. You should remember that just because there may be only one sector left that doesn't mean the crew are lazy, making a point etc. Once that gear comes up over the runway NOBODY knows how long it'll be before you land again. The crew need to be prepared for the worst and most of all need to be able to cope with it, there's only one person who can tell if they are, themselves. I would hope everyone agrees with that?
Somebody close to me always used to say, "I rather be down here wishing i was up there, that up there wishing i was down here". Are you telling me that most passengers would be ok to be at 40,000' with a crew that were not on the ball, happy to be up there?! For the love of the industry, surely not!

29th Sep 2004, 12:41
Captain Fillosan (rtd)

I am an example of a Captain who has never once refused to go into discretion. Who feels an overwhelming responsibility to get my passengers to where they should be and not have their lives disrupted. Who always is prepared to "go the extra mile".

Our cabin crew, in general, do not share this ethos. They may have done in your day but the world has changed. No more salutes on board any more. Sorry Old Bean.

As for one swear word with ***. Stop sqealing like a bunch of up-tight Amish.

BOAC. People are allowed to disagree with you. Times have moved on from the 707


29th Sep 2004, 13:10
In my book, and any English-speaking person's book, the word 'may' is understood to mean that the subject of the verb with which it is used (ie I may exercise..., she may say yes.., he may say no...etc) has an option to do or not to do. End of story.

If you always exercise discretion to do something then I am pleased for you; I and others working with me do not lead perfect lives and have other influences that will affect us on a day-to-day, or hour-to-hour basis.

Unfortunately people who swear usually lack vocabulary and if they resort to typing in swear words on a forum they should be encouraged to use another forum.

29th Sep 2004, 13:34
Stan Wooley, does the phrase "tongue in cheek" have any meaning to you?? Smiley not enough of a clue, I apologise.

But as for the implication, may I suggest reading the Cabin Crew forum once in a while, just as an example.

Oh and call me a tad cynical but:
I recently operated a 15hr 40 min two sector duty to get pax home, including just under ten hours flying. Thats on a two pilot wide bodied jet , continuous duty without a break.
Is this not what you are paid to do? Just curious you understand, as I assume all was legal regarding crew duty time and you were operating a scheduled service!


29th Sep 2004, 13:55
I am embarrassed to even admit being party to the same industry as you lot of whinging, self-righteous adolescents. None of you seem to have a clue of what it means to be a professional pilot. I'm even more embarrassed to think that true professionals from other industries are reading this load of childish nonsense posted here by immature individuals masquerading as airline pilots.

Stan Woolley
29th Sep 2004, 13:56

Apology accepted but I would suggest you read the CAP371 FTL scheme if you don't understand the legalities involved.

In this case you assume correctly.

;) :rolleyes:

29th Sep 2004, 13:59
Thanks Stan.

No offence was intended.

29th Sep 2004, 13:59
:D from one of the engineering support team, I for one support the crews who refuse to be stretched any further. Has the company annonced the ballot result I thought the 2.5% was a joke when big BA were offered an extra £1000 as a bribe to come to work

29th Sep 2004, 15:23
Surely the point here is not whether you will or will not but the fact that crewing or some management pilot is trying to make your mind up for you, before the last sector has even been encountered.

At a certain loco out of EMA and MAN you are quite literally told before you start on the the first of four sectors that YOU WILL extend duty into discretion. When you politely decline you are then phoned by the most senior of pilots, ranted at in no uncertain manner and told what you "will do". At no time are you expected to have an opinion.

What is clearly obvious is that Pilots dicretion is being subsituted
for extending FDP at crewing's dicretion.
I always thought that you could not plan to go into discretion at the beginning of your FDP, end of story..or not as the case may be!

Sheikh Zabik
29th Sep 2004, 17:39
Sorry FC I completely fail to see your argument. If you are correct on the facts then that makes the behaviour of the Company the worse. If you are right, then what was BA CX doing dispatching an aircraft with a crew who were likely to run out of hours? Reckless I suggest (more likely desperate because they had no standby cover.)

You seem to be suggesting that discretion is OK so long as it is not down the line and results in a crew and Pax along with AC getting stranded. Again you have lost me.

As to dragging the Company through the mud. I made this post deliberately on a public forum because it concerns an apparent blatant infringment of the right of a Commander to determine his own fitness to continue a flight beyond the duty limits set by the CAA as custodians of theinterests of the fare paying public.

I believe that sort of action is against the public interest and significantly increases the odds of a fatigue related disaster. No management bonus can justify that. One is therefor entitled to question the motivation and competence of the individual who authorised the suspension presumably as an example "pour encourager les autres" to push themselves and their crew beyond safe limits.

29th Sep 2004, 18:30
I am an example of a Captain who has never once refused to go into discretion. Who feels an overwhelming responsibility to get my passengers... blah blah blah

Wow, you sound like an example of a captain who I would refuse to go into discretion with (and get off the plane) If your "overwhelming responsibility" is to go when your crew may be knackered from slogging up and down the aisle and bringing you your coffee fo 12.5 hours. Would you listen to your F/Os opinions? Why would you though? You seem marvellous enough to be able to fly the plane, service the cabin etc all by your own wonderful self.

If your priority is not the welfare of your passengers AND crew then I for one don't believe you are safe to operate. All I can say is that I'm glad you aren't on longhaul aircraft. I'd hate to see you trying to cope with a 15 crew walkoff when you try and push a crew to go on the 4th sector of a back to back or the last sector of a SIN/BKK-MEL/SYD in a delay situation.

Perhaps you ought to come down off the pedestal that you have put yourself on and learn a bit of CRM (and common sense). I'm glad that the vast majority of your colleagues on the flight deck are aware that they aren't the only people who are working on board the aircraft and take that into account. Perhaps BA ought to start screening for megalomania in it's flight crew.

Hand Solo
29th Sep 2004, 20:20
Fortunately ABird747s nightmare scenario would never occur as BA cabin crew would walk off the aircraft leaving passengers stranded the moment they went beyond their industrial limits, which usually fall well short of CAP371. The issue of discretion with them is a total non-issue. It just ain't happening!

Two add my 2ps worth, IMHO discretion should only ever be used for unforeseeable events. If the company has done their best, something beyond their control has messed things up and you feel it is safe for yourself and the rest of the crew to extend your duty period then discretion is a possibility. It should not be used simply to paper over the cracks in the companys poor planning. If it is patently obvious from the outset that things are not going to work (unrealistic planned block times, unrealistic turnaround times) then it's not my job to start aligning the holes in the swiss cheese for them by going into discretion. I have previously been asked if I would be prepared to go into discretion that duty on sector 1 of a 5 sector day. My answer was that they find a new pilot for sector 5 or sectors 3 and 4.

29th Sep 2004, 21:31
An awful lot of people seem to be getting very hot under the collar here about a situation about which they evidently know very little. BACX are a large and well connected operation; they are hardly likely to suspend a captain for simply declining to work into discretion. These situations are rarely as simple as they seem, or as they are reported.

Consider a hypothetical situation where a series of flights are running late, for whatever reason. Captain X makes it quite clear before the final couple of sectors that (s)he will NOT work into discretion should it become necessary, even though it is made clear to him/her that that will result in the cancellation of the flight and the resultant inconvenience to a large number of passengers.

Consider then the situation where the final sector is running considerably late, but will still get said captain home without going into discretion. When the flight plan is then delayed to reflect a realistic departure time, it results in a further considerable slot delay, say up to an hour, which will definitely put the crew into discretion time. At that point the captain opts to exercise his/her discretion and says ‘No go.’ Soon after the crew depart the aircraft, for whatever reason, the slot comes forward to, effectively, the realistic delayed departure time, which would still allow said crew to arrive back at base without going into discretion. By now it is too late of course, the crew have already gone and the flight has been cancelled.

Anyone who flies in Europe, especially at jet captain level, should have some understanding of the CFMU slot system. They should therefore be aware that slots can and do come forward, as well as get later. There are even staff whose job it is to try and improve slot times by various means. To take the decision to effectively abandon the flight well in advance due to a poor slot could be seen to be irresponsible and unprofessional. Take a moment to consider the additional costs in money and loss of reputation for the carrier of that precipitate decision.

Only hypothetical of course……………..and No, I am not BACX management!

Hand Solo
29th Sep 2004, 22:24
I think we're all well aware of the vagaries of slot times GWYN. I think most crews would prefer to operate into discretion if possible to get the aircraft home on the last sector. We all know slot times can go forward as well as back. What people are less willing to do is depart main base already knowing they will have to use an amount of discretion for the return leg, then being subject to even more delay on the return leg which would require to use more discretion than you had previously planned on and considered reasonable given the preceeding events. The decision on whether to operate into discretion is not one of commercial expedience or customer convenience, it is one of safety. Nobody will thank you when your discretionary flight goes off the end of the runway because you wanted to save the company some money by not cancelling. I recently had a fairly gruelling 12hr, 3 sector duty in atrocious weather during which we both decided we were unwilling to use discretion for the last sector, even though it would be a ballache not just for the company but us personally. 90 minutes later, approaching midnight, when we found ourselves 90 miles south of track, still heading south, bouncing around the tops of CBs at FL380 and working out whether we could make destination or would have to divert into an unfamiliar airfield at night we were glad not to have an extra 2 hours of tiredness to contend with.

29th Sep 2004, 23:34
H solo
If the company has done their best, something beyond their control has messed things up and you feel it is safe for yourself and the rest of the crew to extend your duty period then discretion is a possibility. It should not be used simply to paper over the cracks in the companys poor planning. If it is patently obvious from the outset that things are not going to work (unrealistic planned block times, unrealistic turnaround times) then it's not my job to start aligning the holes in the swiss cheese for them by going into discretion. Well said. A certain loco's winter schedule includes a six sector day rostered to within 5 minutes of max FDP and with totally silly flight and turn round times. That is NOT what it's for

Mr Angry from Purley
30th Sep 2004, 02:45
Any crew member should set off on any day expecting to use
discretion - thats what it is for. Was it this Guys first day, if so there would be a higher expectancy that it could be used.

Was it 5 minutes or 2 hours - was he/she on a 55 hour week
Was the original schedule unrealistic from the planning stage.

I dont see any issue with a Pilot Manager being able to speak to his Captain to discuss the reasons for declining to use discretion,
even if its a straight no.

The only sad fact is that in the old days flights rostered to max duty where few and far between,TLV and BJL maybe nowdays its the norm to go multisector and up to the limit. Some Loco's and CX likely to be on fixed weeks still rather than rolling accumulators to make the situ worse.


Sheikh Zabik
30th Sep 2004, 08:05
Quite so Mr Angry.

Within BA CX you have to look at this latest affront to the pilot community against a background of:

Apalling roster instability

Very high levels of disruption

Crew shortages due to lack of forward planning

Morale sub zero

To make matters worse the company seriously proposed that any wage increase should be paid for by cutting disruption payments and Mr DF has been on the phone to just about every available pilot to try to pursuade him/her to give up leave!!

An operation in crisis is hardly going to be helped by resorting to intimidation of pilots to fly beyond prescribed hours of safety.

30th Sep 2004, 08:21
Sheikh - thought it worth 'popping back in' to the discussion as it is beginning to appear that the 'refusal' of discretion might have had more to do with industrial issues than actual safety. Even more important that the captain concerned is extremely careful as I tried to indicate earlier. Please do NOT get the impression that I do not sympathise with what you describe as your work patterns - there are cautions, however, which need to be heeded.

I suspect the CAA will have little interest if this is the case. BALPA may also 'disappoint'.

An old ploy when telephoned by management to be 'pressured' into extending is to have terrible trouble with the phone line and to say " I don't know if you can still hear me, but can you send me a telex message as I cannot hear you". You will not hear much more.

30th Sep 2004, 08:51
What makes this situation galling is that I believe Mr DF has not been very active flying wise for some years.

Could someone give us some idea of how many flying hours TDF has achieved over the last 3 years? Perhaps more interesting would be his total command experience on any airliner!

For someone with so little experience to be suspending a skipper for apparently refusing discretion is poor. Had he been forced to work the rosters and cope with recent disruption he might better appreciate the current attitudes and lack of morale.

30th Sep 2004, 09:27
Discretion is (should be) simply there in order to be able to fly home after say the 3rd sector downroute, having suffered a delay for whatever reason.

If it seems like that the arrival into destination (4th sector) will have to be under discretion, then that's what the crew should be deciding upon before leaving for the 4th sector from downroute.
I think in most cases we would all be wanting to bring the flight home.

However, to leave base (3rd sector) knowing that discretion will definitely have to be used and it is because of poor rostering, perhaps right up to max FDP, then I would not be doing it. Why???

Because no one knows how badly I may have slept the night before, because no one can measure my accumulative fatigue over the last few days, because I may consider operating beyond the legal limit UNSAFE.

Sure, they may say to me: fly your 3rd sector and then stay downroute, or set off home (4th sector) and land half way, or similar nonsense, which can not be refused, but then DO IT, do just that.
Stay there or land somewhere, thereby teaching the bully department that you have rights which you will stand up for!
You have a life, you ARE life. It's YOUR life.

30th Sep 2004, 12:44
Fortunately ABird747s nightmare scenario would never occur as BA cabin crew would walk off the aircraft leaving passengers stranded the moment they went beyond their industrial limits, which usually fall well short of CAP371. The issue of discretion with them is a total non-issue. It just ain't happening!


Never a truer word spoken. I have never come across a bunch of people so intent on getting off a service the second they can as this lot at BA.

Except of course if they are going home or going to a premium destination.

By the way did peple on here know that BA's beloved cabin crew get extra money (to stop them going sick) for going to "unpopular" destinations such as Miami?

And we wonder why we have problems making money!!


30th Sep 2004, 17:20
This thread is becoming highly personalised in a completely unnecessary manner! I know from personal experience that, in BACX, any reasonable refusal to work into discretion is accepted without question.

However, please re-read GWYN's hypothetical situation!

Let us say, hypothetically speaking, a Captain cancelled a service on the basis of his FTL limits, having previously indicated his refusal to utilise any discretion, and entirely on the basis of a slot delay!

Wouldn't his passengers, and on their behalf his management, be entitled to ask why the service was cancelled, if it subsequently transpired that, due to slot improvement, the service could have operated within the crew's normal FDP?

Some might say, this captain could be accused of letting down his customers, his airline, AND his colleagues!

Perhaps he needs a reality check!

Hypothetically speaking of course!

Sheikh Zabik;

I assume you know the full story, and can clear this up for us?

30th Sep 2004, 17:51
Thanks TR

It's pleasing to know that at least one person is able to read and understand what I believed to be a quite clear outline of a hypothetical scenario, and comment upon it.

Perhaps those who know what really happened would care to enlighten the rest of us, and maybe the discussion might then be restricted to the real issues.

30th Sep 2004, 18:09
By the way did peple on here know that BA's beloved cabin crew get extra money (to stop them going sick) for going to "unpopular" destinations such as Miami?

And did anyone else know that this money is not "extra" but money that was left over from savings that we were asked to make during BEP? Did anyone else know that this money is put into a pot and shared out amongst crew as an extra allowance for certain trips to avoid tax (if it was included in basic salary).

Perhaps you ought to get your facts right before casting a jealous eye over your colleagues remuneration package.

<Steps down off soap box>

30th Sep 2004, 18:38
If its from savings from BEP why is it still being paid? How can it be saved if they bare paying it?

Its a bribe to make the seagulls come to work.

As if they need it with CSD's basic running at circa £35k pa with 20 grand allowances on top.

Sorry for the thread creep. Can't help it when these over paid prima donnas, Windsor Witches and precious "boys", go on about their money.

£50 grand a year to serve the tea.

Also going back to the original thread.
Q.If the cabin crew refuse to extend past their industrial agreement(usually lees tha scheme) then do they have to justify it?

Ans. Absolutely not. Indeed there is a letter from BA advising cc that they should work to Industrial or scheme whichever is limiting.

It would seem that if a captain refuses to operate into discretion (way more than industrial) they he/she has to justify themselves to their manager, and,according to BOAC, have a limited career span.

One rule for one and one for BASSA who control the operation anyway.


30th Sep 2004, 19:12
Not all of us are on £50k pa. I for one am on a basic of 11k +allowances.

The reason that the payment came about was that BA asked cabin services (as it was then) to save X amount. Through union negotiation and the usual hand wringing the desired amount of savings were indentified. On top of these an unavoidable amount of say £2m (not the actual amount for argument's sake) extra was saved.

BA as a thank you for the savings said that they'd give it back to the crew. The best way of doing it and avoiding a higher tax burden on BA was the Destination Payment.

True, it has been put on certain less popular routes but only as a way of "softening" the blow of a long sector out to SEA for only a nightstop for example.

I cannot defend the bahviour of the small minority of crew who abuse the sickness system. Thankfully it seems to be on the decline with the attrition of said Windsor Witches (good one!) et al. One thing though, us tray slingers may go on about our money (especially at the lower end of the pay scale -- trying to make ends meet) but pilots are also known to go on about their pensions, bidline and pay package; people in glass houses shouldn't throw stones.

I recognise why pilots who work very hard for their licences are pi$$ed off when they find that some lazy, old, leather winged CSD is earning more than them for doing diddly-squat. Trust me, it's not nice for us the other side of the door working with them either.

30th Sep 2004, 19:24
according to BOAC, have a limited career span - how's that for a misquote?

30th Sep 2004, 19:26

Ok. You make some good points.

Maybe we shouldn't have hijacked this thread but we all have a soapbox.

I agree that it must be unpleasant working with some of these "WW's" and agree that this type don't help anyone, least out wage payers. However nor do the self righteous pompous flight crew types (of which you'll find a few on here).

God we're almost in agreement.

Will you go out with me?

BOAC. Poetic licence from your reply to Nigel.


30th Sep 2004, 19:54
Shucks BTSM..... you'll make a boy blush!:O

30th Sep 2004, 19:56
Well, BTSM, if that is 'poetic licence', I suggest you don't give up the day job to be a poet.

Tandemrotor has hit this particular nail on the head. No-one has given us enough FACTS to make comment on the detail of this case, just on the general topic. Based on what we have, without further information (from the Sheikh?), it is beginning to look like an 'industrial' refusal.

I would say to all who 'rely' on BALPA riding to their rescue if they petulantly refuse to extend when all are really fit to do so, purely for 'industrial' issues, then their 1% would have been much better spent having BALPA ride to their rescue over what they claim is unreasonable rostering and other 'practices'.

1st Oct 2004, 05:59
I can assure the community that at LHR anarchy riegns and is never likely to go away. We are still masters at over paying and under working enjoying customs and practices that go back 29 years. I am in awe of the fact we still make money and it is the likes of BACX staff that will make the main commitments to cost savings followed by the regions whlist the fat continues to grow. I am sure that at some point in the future the party will have to stop.

1st Oct 2004, 07:26
So when is discretion not discretion? When it is "Industrial". Is that what you are saying BOAC? Surely not!

CAP 371 is quite clear and makes the presumption in favour of limiting the duty to the permitted FDP. It is the exercise of discretion to extend a duty which requires justification possibly, not the lack of will to extend beyond permitted FDP. In my submission no justification is required and a Commander is entirely within his rights to refuse to "go into discretion" (which is a misleading phrase anyway) without assigning any reason whatsoever.

There can be no such distinction as between an "Industrial" reason or indeed any other for failing to agree to extend a duty period.

In the particular case the subject Commander is a well respected individual who has a number of issues with the company. Having elected to accept a 75% roster (A few months ago when CX was shedding pilots!) she found herself in a situation where she had almost as much FDP as a 100% roster due to some highly creative work by crewing. She was being rostered to the limit virtually every day. When she complained it is alleged that she was treated inappropriately and subsequently has been discriminated against on a number of grounds. This treatment is and was the subject of formal complaint which may or may not lead to Legal proceedings.

Against this background she found herself in a situation where a duty would extend beyond prescribed FDP, warned the company that she would not be prepared to extend before the duty (which they did not heed) and, surprise, surprise, when down the line FDP was to run out, packed her bags and went to a hotel for the night.

So BOAC, by your estimation, you would say this was an "Industrial" refusal. Here is someone who alleges that she is being abused by the Company on a number of fronts, with zero tolerance and goodwill as a result. The response of the manager concerned is of no surprise to those of us who are familiar with him. I suspect he will come to regret it.

What is needed is a clear statement either from the CAA or a judicial interpretation of what otherwise seems quite clear in plain english. Otherwise it appears that the word "discretion" will have been hijacked by inept management who, having lost the good will of their workforce, are seeking to beat yet more work out of an already tired and demoralised community.

1st Oct 2004, 08:04
Thank you TT - at last we have some useful background. Please accept that I am not on 'managements' side' - my only 'management' experience was being CP of a one-man AOC where the discretionary decision was easy and unchallenged:D

I think where 'she' will have the problem (and I HAVE seen this happen before) is that the company will need to know how 'she' knew before departure 'she' (or the crew) would not be fit for the subsequent sector. Their argument could well be "Well, how did you know you would not be fit to return? Were you fit to operate the outbound sector, then?" I HAVE seen colleagues suffer at management's hands with such actions.So BOAC, by your estimation, you would say this was an "Industrial" refusal - no, I am not able to make that analysis. All I am saying is
1) be careful with this one or there could be 'tears'
2) it appears there are big 'industrial' issues in the company, so there is a possibility of this.

The fact that the company was advised before departure is to 'her' advantage.

As I have said before, and I know the CAA will support a company who press this - if you don't believe me, write to your ops inspector and ask him to put it in writing - captain's 'discretion' is normally 'expected' to be used to recover a situation PROVIDING THE CAPTAIN JUDGES THE FLIGHT CAN SAFELY BE MADE (my Italics). This is what I suspect TDLF will be promoting - ie 'Why could you not operate the sector safely?". That is solely the captain's call, but WILL NEED to be justified if challenged. C'est la Vie as my French 'friends' say.

Why don't you get that 'clear statement' from the CAA yourself? I suspect you will not like the answer. Read MJ's post on page 1 again - it is from CAP 371 - the only restriction in the CAA's eye's is "provided 'he' is satisfied that the flight can be made safely". 'Discretion' has been a problem for a long time, and this situation is not new - and I suspect will not go away.

1st Oct 2004, 08:28
From BA bidline rules

BLR 10.1 "British Airways will plan Trips within Section 10 limits; these are the limits of
the Pilot's contractual obligation." (industrial)

It then says

British Airways may request and anticipate that the crew member will be prepared to extend to the relevant Flight Time Limitations of the British Airways Scheme. BA crew management recognises and accepts that there will be wholly proper reasons why, on occasion, an individual crew member will be unable to accede to this request. Such reasons would include (but need not be restricted to) the pre-flight rest obtained, previous fatiguing Duties, the displacement of the next Trip or social commitments of an important nature."

ie any reason you can think of.

Therefore you can refuse to extend Industrial limits up to even FLTs(never mind discretion on that) and BALPA have publicly stated that they will fully support any pilot who refuses for whatever reason. Can't be any clearer than that.

Thankfully for BA this rarely happens.


1st Oct 2004, 10:40

Thank you for the few more details you have provided.

You said, "when down the line FDP was to run out, packed her bags and went to a hotel for the night."

As did her passengers presumably.

Can you confirm, or deny that this decision was taken on the basis of a slot delay, and that, had the slot come forward (as of course we know they can) the duty may have been completed with minimal extension, if any 'extension' at all?

1st Oct 2004, 10:47
BTSM - repeating - introducing the 'comfy' BLR protection to this discussion is STILL a red herring! This is not BA Mainline. Remember BLR did not apply (as of July 5th) at LGW. Consider yourself lucky.

1st Oct 2004, 12:41
I just cannot believe I am reading some of this! Here is a damsel in distress. Some folks are trying to offer sensible advice, while the Nigels seem to want her to know what she is mising by not having "BA bidline rules" whatever they are.

Why don't all the CityExpress folk send Private Messages to this 'behind' guy (who obviously has VAST experience of airlines) and ask him to tell them which bit of their agreement this BLR is in? Oh, and while doing it, perhaps letting this TDLF whoever he/she is, know that these rules CANNOT be broken.

I watch in wonder!

Sadly Cynical
1st Oct 2004, 13:14
I have read this post from start to finish. Some of the views expressed have been frankly appalling. There seems to be a section that feel discretion should be used whenever it is needed, and another section that feel using it as an "industrial tool" is acceptable. Both of these views do not reflect those of a professional pilot.

To my mind it is all very simple and the crux of the matter lies in the words "may" and "safely". If I am faced with a situation where discretion becomes an issue I will assess whether, in my opinion and taking note of the circumstances of other members of the crew, it is safe to do so. If it is then the use of discretion is appropriate, if not then we will stay where we are. It is that simple. That is your duty as the Commander of an aircraft.

If you have a management team that thinks otherwise and puts pressure on you to go into discretion, stand firm. It happened once in the company I work for and the Captain remained resolute. They were met at the aircraft steps by BALPA reps on their return and ultimately the manager concerned was forced to apologise. I have not heard of such behavoir recurring.

If this particular Captain decided not to use her discretion to extend the Duty, then I am sure she had very good reasons for doing so and I am equally sure that if she is a member of BALPA then she has no worries. On the other hand, if she was doing this to make a point then that is a reflection on how this management has lost the goodwill of the pilots. I won't condone it, but I can understand it.

I would suggest that if the company you work for routinely puts pressure on Commanders to excercise their discretion then it is time to find another employer.

You splitter
1st Oct 2004, 13:25
Well said SC! Some sense is all that needs to be applied here but sadly it is often lacking on both sides of the fence.

1st Oct 2004, 13:57
In my experience, BACX do not put pressure on pilots (routinely or otherwise) to exercise discretion. BACX is a very professional outfit. The management are sophisticated enough to realise that 'discretion' is in the personal gift of their senior manager on scene (the Captain!) This is not MOL we are dealing with!

However, if the hypothetical situation described on this thread were to occur, the question wouldn't be about 'discretion' AT ALL!

It may however, be about an individual, with an 'axe to grind', making a premature (and expensive) decision, and subsequently finding themselves with a little explaining to do!

If it's an 'honest' mistake, then - No big deal!

Apologies to the travelling customers on the day though.

1st Oct 2004, 14:13
Tandem I believe that in the particular case a slot delay was a factor. What is relevant under Articles 72 and 73 of the ANO (which have to be read with Cap 371) is the interpretation of facts as they appear at the time any decision was made.

"Art 72 - Fatigue of crew - operators responsibilities

(2) The operator of an aircraft to which this article applies shall not cause or permit any person to fly therein as a member of its crew if he knows or has reason to believe that the person is suffering form, or, having regard tot he circumstances of the flight to be undertaken, is likely to suffer from, such fatigue while he is so flying as may endanger the safety of the aircraft or of its occupants.

Art 73 - Fatigue of crew - operators responsibilities

(1) A person shall not act as a member of the crew of an aircraft to which this article applies if he knows or suspects that he is suffering from, or, having regard to the circumstance of the flight to be undertaken, is likely to suffer from, such fatigue as may endanger the safety of the aircraft or of its occupants."

This lady was obviously feeling beaten up and demoralised by her treatment by the company and what might have been taken in the stride of someone who did not have such issues very probably weighed with her in coming to the decision she did.

Doubtless it will all come out in the wash as to exactly what did happen but I observe with considerable alarm that the manager concerned has now gone public on his right to determine whether or not one of "his" pilots has exercised his discretion not to extend a duty for good and proper reasons......

The stakes just appeared to get higher.....................

Sadly Cynical
1st Oct 2004, 14:17
There is a worrying trend developing in this thread. Some contributors seem to think that if a Captain decides not to use his/her discretion to extend the duty period, then the resultant and inevitable disruption to the passengers is that Captains fault. Please bear in mind that there will have been a number of reasons why they have reached their decision. Poor rostering, poor scheduling, aircraft changes, ATC delays, strikes, weather, crew transport, disruptive passengers...the list goes on and on. All these things contribute to fatigue and pilots can rarely influence any of them.

In my experience, we pilots want what is best for the company and passengers alike. However, we are the ones that have to make the difficult decision, where necessary, to call things a day before all the holes line up.

1st Oct 2004, 18:43
In my experience, BACX do not put pressure on pilots (routinely or otherwise) to exercise discretion. BACX is a very professional outfit. The management are sophisticated enough to realise that 'discretion' is in the personal gift of their senior manager on scene (the Captain!) This is not MOL we are dealing with!

Tandem, just so that we can be quite clear as to where your perspective comes from, let us be quite clear about the slope of the playing field at BACX and where you are on it.

You are without doubt a senior secondee on a BA contract on the RJ. Correct?

As such, you get for starters another £12000 per annum more than your CX colleagues doing exactly the same job. Correct?

Additionally you have a special scheduling agreement deal which gives you a further £7000 per annum in comparison with said colleauge (due to a happy cock up by one of the managers you laud). Correct?

So you are getting £19000 per annum more, enjoy special mainline priviledges like final salary pensions, (some CX pilots will leave with a pension of £8000 per annum) health care, enhanced loss of licence cover, blah, blah blah............

Not surprising really that you think all is rosy with BACX management, the main man of which of course enjoys exactly the same as you before his management package is even considered.

Your experience and views are I am sorry to say very far from typical from a workforce who has not had a pay rise in over three years and is now effectively offered a pay cut and is now being harassed into working beyond safe FTL limits.

Professional.........................??!!! Dont make us laugh.

1st Oct 2004, 19:31
In my experience, BACX do not put pressure on pilots (routinely or otherwise) to exercise discretion. BACX is a very professional outfit.

My mate is a secondee captain at CX and he reckons its the biggest shower he's ever seen.

Claims the RJ fleet training has been taken over by a bunch of "flying school GA amatuers" from the J41 who are imposing GA principles to jet flyng.

He was even less complmentary about the management.

"Small time with small brains" and no end of crap rostering and unreasonable demands.

Not my opinion. Just the messenger. My only view of CX is half a sandwich masquerading as "full service" is taking the urine.


1st Oct 2004, 19:36
I wouldn't work for this lot if they paid me. I'm waiting for my number to come up in Ryanair and no matter what people say, they are a brilliant company to work for. :yuk:

1st Oct 2004, 21:19
This thread is digressing in a depressingly predictable way!

Tinytim, hi;

The overwhelming majority of your last post is wrong.
I'm not even entirely sure why it would be relevent even if true!

There are obviously 2 sides to every story. I have clearly only heard one. However, it has been suggested that discretion MAY not have been required to complete this duty.

Do you know different?

I can sympathise with the individual concerned, but perhaps they made a mistake??

I just disagree with the idea that BACX put pressure on people to work into discretion. That has NOT been my experience.


Tell your mate to bid back to LHR! No problem. I'm sure he'll be much happier there!! Why didn't he bid back last year if he is so unhappy?

Sheikh Zabik
1st Oct 2004, 21:21
Claims the RJ fleet training has been taken over by a bunch of "flying school GA amatuers" from the J41 who are imposing GA principles to jet flyng.

Right on the money BTSM.

Philosophy of Chief trainer is that once a trainer always a trainer.

Result. Boyo who was a trainer on the J41 and has never flown a jet before gets instant promotion on demise of that fleet to jet trainer on RJ100, thereby leaping over the heads of more experienced better qualified and more senior individuals.

A strange philosophy which has its roots "on the Island" and the need at all costs to look after your mates.

The buck stops with Mr DF and for this and many other reasons like this "discretion" fiasco many of us have no confidence in him or his judgement and cant wait to see him return to BA to join his recently departed and sorely unmissed colleague.

2nd Oct 2004, 07:17
Apparently one of their new procedures is to have the "local" QNH on the standby above TA. How flyng school is that.?
What are you supposed to do ask for, every regional QNH from here to Rome?


He won't go back to LHR right now because dispite it being a "tin pot operation", post pay deal he wouldn't get command for another year or two. I suspect then he'll be off.

Also they threatened a secondee captain with suspension if he didn't break an industrial agreement to operate recently. His FM told him off the record if he didn't operate he was under instruction to suspend him. I'd like to have seen try.

BA would have bown a gasket not to mention BALPA.

I still maintain half a sandwich isn't full service. Says a lot about the company to me.


Sheikh Zabik
2nd Oct 2004, 09:42
He won't go back to LHR right now because dispite it being a "tin pot operation", post pay deal he wouldn't get command for another year or two. I suspect then he'll be off.

A pal at BA reckons that he's got enough seniority for a Long haul command now if he cant get a big desk somwhere in Waterworld.

Cx is in desperate need of some changes and by that I dont mean more of the same in the shape of Mr Df's chosen succesor.

IMHO BA should either get rid of Cx along with its dreadful management or fully integrate it. This discretion thing is a desperate man trying to reassert his authority as pilots head for the door. At least you know exactly where you stand with O'Leary!

2nd Oct 2004, 16:18
Sorry for the 'off-topic', but not forgetting, of course, that you do not need 'seniority' for things like 747 commands in BA as a manager.

Sheikh Zabik
2nd Oct 2004, 16:58
U sure of that BOAC?

One of Mr DF's first antics as GMFO at CX was to promote a junior FO with low hours and zilch seniority (Loads claimed as flight engineer) to be a fleet manager with a command thrown in. He did of course have the right handshake.

It has been down hill since then and morale has headed so far south that most people dont give a damn anymore.

Ghengis Cant
2nd Oct 2004, 17:14
I just CANNOT BELIEVE what I have read on this thread.

This Guy DF is a BA manager..............right?

If all this is true then he appears to be acting like an unaccountable dictator with little regard for the interests of his pilots or the fare paying public.

Someone like to tell me how or why he's keeping his job???

Yeager's Lovechild
2nd Oct 2004, 17:29

You just answered your own question.

2nd Oct 2004, 18:01

You'd better believe it! There can be few examples in recent airline history where the morale of in excess of 500 pilots has plummeted to the absolute hard deck in so short a time - and all at the hand of DF. Then you need to look at the grasping ex BRAL (cos' with the exception of the ex-Brymon flight engineer there aren't any Brymon guys left) wunderkinds who DF has working for him.

Past form and the treatment of the pilots which DF has forced out of bases suggests that he has NO regard for his pilots.

But you need to look past him at the failed BAR manager who runs the whole shabang.

Ghengis Cant
2nd Oct 2004, 18:25
Sorry. I just don't get it.

This is a BA Company which prides itself on service to the public and a well motivated and well paid workforce which sets the standard to which others aspire.....including Industrial relations.

I know pprune is tongue in cheek and not to be taken too seriously but what is being described here is a third world operation with managers who shouldn't be let loose in a corner shop (If even half of what is being alleged is fact).

Does Mr Eddington know about this? He is many things but certainly not stupid.

What the ££$$!! is going on with BA CitiExpress?

2nd Oct 2004, 22:34
Tandem, where have you gone?

You recently said:-
Tinytim, hi;
The overwhelming majority of your last post is wrong.
I'm not even entirely sure why it would be relevent even if true!

Maybe you have now taken a look at the official BACX pilot's scheduling agreement and discovered that Tiny is right. Thanks to some monumental cock up by BA management, you have a different arrangement for overtime (see secondment agreement) which with this years flying rates, is likely to make you better off than your fellow CX contract pilot to the tune of 6 to 8k (depending on your basic salary).

It took months to thrash out this agreement and six months on, one or two BA managers appear to have completely trashed it.

3rd Oct 2004, 07:22
Yes Kirkwall. I thought Tandem's denial was a bit hollow! If you are not a BA pilot seconded to CX then I am a monkey's uncle Tandem. Your posting history gives it away!!

As a seconded BA pilot you have a package of sweeteners for working at CX way over and above what your CX chums get for doing EXACTLY the same job. In fact, if you add up your "special payment" of £12000, extra scheduling payments and all the other extra bits and pieces you get...............consider this before making another posting about how rosy and professional life is in CX.

You get in allowances more than the basic pay of some CX pilots. Or, put another way you are grossing at least FOUR TIMES what some of your CX colleagues get.

That is your good fortune, but you do not live in the real CX world. Neither of course does our GMFO or CEO both of whom have tenaciously hung on to their BA contracts and lead from the rear.

Small wonder that morale is through the floor and few if any genuine CX pilots feel that anyone in mangement is rooting for them.

Beating pilots up over not exercising their free will to go into discretion just depresses and dejects a community already punched to a standstill by three years plus of inspired BA rule.

The Little Prince
3rd Oct 2004, 09:29
I'm not sure why my last posts on this subject were removed - I was endeavouring to show that the likes of Tandem ARE in fact partly responsible via Big BALPA's shameful take on the situation via scope and refusal to encourage BA to offer mainline Ts and Cs to BACX like they did to CityFlyer. No excuses will do, compare their grasping and selfish behaviour to that of Britannia who are at least trying to get the Thomson operatio Ts and Cs up to the 'mainline Brit level. Why? Maybe because they see it better to haul everyone up than to selfishly do people down. BA management I can understand, but as I said, and was deleted before, it's the actions of the BA mainline pilots I can't understand.

Carnage Matey!
3rd Oct 2004, 11:01
As I'm sure has been pointed out before, CityFlyer merged with BA, bringing all their routes and about 24 aircrafts worth of new opportunities at one of our main bases. They completely ceased to be a seperate company. Thats why they went on the seniority list. BACX have brought NOTHING to the party with mainline but the loss of 16 aircraft, two bases, lots of routes and lots of career opportunity for mainline pilots. They were, and remain to all intents and purposes, a separate company. Thats why you don't get automatic inclusion in the seniority list. Whilst were on the subject of selfishly doing people down I seem to remember mucg crowing on these forums from CX pilots, yourself included, about how you were so much better than mainline pilots because you'd do the same job for less money. Hardly helping your case there were you.

3rd Oct 2004, 11:08
You know what? It is astonishing reading this and other similar threads by you so called 'professionals' (this does not apply to everyone, you will know yourself if it does).

Whinge, moan, complain.......if you don't like your job then resign and work on the checkout in Tescos.

I fly Single Pilot IFR in the worst of the weather (not above it) at all hours of the night and day. Rain, Wind, Icing and occasionally turbulance so bad the instruments are a blur with just me to deal with it. Often urgent Ambulance/Donor flights where you have to go if it at all possible to get there, (safety first obviously) working to max FTL/FDP. It so happens that I enjoy it, if I didn't I would do something else.
We work hard to keep the company going, what is the point of fighting against it..... you end up out of a job.

Those of you who have done this on your way up the ladder understand and my point is not aimed at you.
However, It is not hard work sitting at FL350 drinking coffee, ranting on about 'the company'; whichever one was gracious enough to give you a job over and above the thousands of other pilots that are desperate to do it.

All industries have management that is crap in the opinion of the workforce....(and they may be) but they have a responsibility too..... to keep you in a job....

As I said this does not apply to everyone....

3rd Oct 2004, 14:48
Some good points there pilotbear, many would agree. However, this is a quite specific thread - or it was, ha ha .

Let's remember the point, about the Captain and discretion. However, let's also consider the very relevant comments from our mainline friends.
Someone said something to the effect that 'they' (management)wouldn't dare do it (suspension) to a mainline pilot if he exercised discretion in a similar fashion. There were subsequent other posts rearing their heads about the whole BA/BACX relationship.
For heaven's sake, lets move on. Maybe things have been said and done on both sides which were less than clever; but surely, surely mainline pilots have nothing to lose by ACTIVELY SUPPORTING the move by BACX onto mainline Ts and Cs, or at the very least, the bottom of the seniority list with the same rights that apparently the mainliners have.

How could it possibly hurt? If BACX guys are incompetent - they'll be chopped on their first go at a conversion. If not, then where is the problem? Are mainline pilots, so quick to point out their strengths in dealing with management, likely to be disadvantaged - if so, how?

I'm very much afraid it is the arrogant elitism, similar to that displayed with GSS that is part of the problem. When, and only when, BA pilots are able to behave like most of the rest of the UK pilot workforce, and be SUPPORTIVE, and INCLUSIVE, will they be able to be taken as anything other than selfish, protectionist and probably terminally shortsighted. By their actions they allow the TDLFs of this world to thrive and grow in number. They do themselves no favours.
One expects a management to take a polarised position when considering its workforce, their aims and ambitions are rarely aligned. However, it is unusual to put it mildly, to see one section of the said workforce being deliberately and selfishly punitive to the aspirations of another section, identical in all but name.

I fly with BA secondees, sad to say there is a huge difference between the BA guys who came from CityFlyer and the mainliners.
You can always tell a genuine mainliner - but you can't tell him much!:yuk:

Carnage Matey!
3rd Oct 2004, 15:19
Interesting points there Yog and in a way you've partly answered your own question. I don't think BA mainline pilots do have anything to lose by actively supporting BACX joining the seniority list. BUT, management on both sides don't want it because it means more rights for you, more cost for them. So where do we go from there? Too many of your colleagues grossly over-estimate the influence BACC has within BA. They believe that BACC will wave a magic wand and you'll be on the list. The truth is that management resist almost any initiative from BACC, even zero cost ones, so the only way to force BACX pilots onto the list would be industrial action. I don't actually think that would be legal as you're a seperate company, but even if it was there are a lot of things more important to BA pilots than that which they're not prepared to strike over.

The next factor is that when the last negotiation take place your company council was actively seeking to give our guys the boot out of the regions. Even you must admit that you can't negotiate for a position on a seniority list when you're simultaneously trying to negotiate the removal of someone from a regional position who would be higher on that list.

A final and rather more personal factor is that we're all getting rather sick and tired of the mud-slinging from you and your colleagues. We've had our fill of the lazy, underworked, overpaid Nigel stereotype. We're also particularly fed up of the allegations of arrogance and elitism, selfishness and protectionism which you yourself just levelled. Most BA pilots are at worst ambivalent about BACX, it's no skin off my nose whether you join the list or not. But I'm not going to bang the drum for you when all we get is crap in return.

3rd Oct 2004, 15:39
Not much change there then, mainliners demonstrably not interested in anything resembling outreach. Turkeys and Xmas spring to mind, because inevitably, as seen with Cathay, once management starts effectively eroding Ts and Cs and gets away with it, they will do more. Roll on the 'C' scale.
You chaps seem determined to only be interested in protecting your own six - makes sense for us to do the same I suppose, to paraphrase you, if you won't bang the drum, then expect a lot more of the other! I note with interest mainline couldn't even be bothered to protect future MAINLINE joiners ref the pension scheme - nope, business as usual, a sort of "as long as it doesn't affect US" mentality.
I doubt there will be any action on the coming schism. I believe it inevitable that a much much greater regionalisation will take place, and while Fortress LHR will survive initially, even that will change in the long term. Maybe BEA will be effectively born again, but probably subsidised by Waterside because it couldn't survive against the low costs out there. Hence, whether you guys realise it or not, BACX and BA may be separate (check your spellcheck, Carnage old sport) Companies, but they are bound together with too many chains. Names may change, but the bottom line has become such that should one entity stumble, it will drag the other to its knees, and bloody both in the process.
I suppose as long as you guys are enjoying your crystallised pensions you won't care....(what was the size of that deficit again......)

A great pity, so needless. Of course, since BACC allegedly has so little influence, it will be unable to prevent it....319s to BACX at MAN do I hear??? Presumably the long haul barons won't be interested in leaving their French Ivory Towers to vote against that either? And then of course, how much longer has Rodders got before he inevitably retires? I wonder what the new broom will want to do to make his mark? Start by sorting out the Flight Deck....or the Cabin. I know which one (by your own admission) is the easier duck to shoot.

Team Spirit:mad: CRM:mad: Company Loyalty:yuk:

Now, back to the thread, how is our lady doing with her discretion/suspension situation? Our guys may not be BACC, but they are very very effective, they have made TDLF and PH look very silly on a number of occasions (though it has to be said, t'aint that difficult!)

Anyway, how is she, and where is the situation up to? Good luck sweetums!

3rd Oct 2004, 19:21
Otherwise the remnants of British Regional, Manx (part), Brymon etc etc.. well I am suprised that anyone is suprised at this.

I left British Regional 7 years ago before I suffered a nervous breakdown. The management was to say the least "appalling" the only sane person was Catpain Nigel Moll, the Chief Pilot, at least tried his best to do things correctly and by the regulations. As for the rest, the Director of Ops and all his henchmen, they ruled by fear and the old game of Divide and Rule!!

I went to USA for a few years to regain my sanity, worked for several small companies who actually appreciated what I was doing for them and NEVER forced the issue when faced with this kind of issue. Discretion is the Commanders Discretion !! but the rub is as always, if you cross the Powers that Be - beware because they WILL GET YOU BACK one way or another. Remember a large number of our immediate bosses are not in the job because they are good managers or llikeable people, many of them have trodden on others to get where they are and they intend to stay there.

My advice to a young person clever enough to be a pilot, DON'T - if you are clever enough to be a pilot then become a Lawyer or a IT Specialist, earn big bucks and have your own Citation or Lear but whatever you do, steer clear of aviation - it SUX!! Not the flying - that is just HEAVEN but all the baggage that goes with it!!

Captain Jumbo
3rd Oct 2004, 19:25
It DOES seem a bit short sighted that mainline won't assist. Easily bruised egos perhaps.

Nothing to lose, lots of goodwill to gain, potential for opening up the regions for those mainline guys who want to go there in greater numbers, opening up better career opportunities for BACX guys who are young enough to benefit from a chance at heavier metal, it even saves money for BA as a whole because the training of ab-initios will be on smaller metal. It goes without saying that a guy trained and flown on smaller stuff in the Regions / Europe SH is a more rounded product than a cadet going straight to the 'bus or bigger.

BA management don't want it of course because they want to keep open the flexibility option should they continue to lose money with BACX and do a Deutsche BA with it all; and also to be able to pick off the mainline perks one at a time rather than have to argue against giving those perks to a wider workforce. Mind you, BA staff travel is not worth a dingo's scut these days if you have a family and need to travel at any normal date/time combination.

Anyway, good luck to all, especially to the Discreet Captain whoever she is!:ok:

Essex Girl
3rd Oct 2004, 21:46
:confused: :ugh: Well that's at least two of you boys complaining about censorship. Don't believe in it myself (if you've seen the videos of me you'll know what I mean ;) ) but think the mean censor should say what he is up to.

After all I know from (very) personal experience what some of these nasty CX managers are getting up to (on the 11th floor :p ). Discretion - I wasn't shown any :O

3rd Oct 2004, 23:39
Well ! There you have it guys! Just so long as we have people like Pilotbear who are willing to prostitute themselves and still expect to be treated like a professional this kind of thing will continue. Where ever did you get the idea that airlines were doing pilots a favour by "giving" them a job? Why don't you return your pay each month on payday Pilotbear, you quite obviously love to fly so much you would do it for nothing! It is guys like you that make it so damned difficult to get management to treat pilots like the professionals they deserve to be treated as. My my! am I glad I am towards the last years of my flying career and not the early years! I always said pilots are their own worst enemy and now I know I am right!

Ghengis Cant
4th Oct 2004, 13:50
interesting to see how this thread is running and running.

Clearly this discretion malarky is just the tip of the iceberg at CX.

Sheikh Zabik
4th Oct 2004, 14:18
Sure thing Gengis.

I would say that the top is about to blow at CX.

You have gross pay apartheid.........Two people doing exactly the same job, flying the same AC etc..........yet one takes a fraction of what the other does.

You have three plus years of disruption, fleet and base changes with a management who have only ever been involved with loss making companies.

There is no apparent respect or trust that these managers have the slightest clue what they are doing.

Now with the workforce beaten to the floor DF comes along and puts the boot in by suspending a pilot for exercising her free will not to bail out a creaking operation by flying beyond prescribed safe limits.

with more than a whiff of industrial trouble brewing following the massive rejection of the latest pay offer I'd say DF is trying to head of a work to rule by intimidating his pilots into believing that if they "work to rule" then they will be suspended.

Despite the fact that Balpa has a recognition agreement with CX and is therefore the sole body authorised to negotiate on behalf of all pilots Mr DF still wrote to all pilots asking them to signify their acceptance of his pay offer direct to him.

He just makes it up as he goes along does this BA manager.

5th Oct 2004, 19:06
Interesting discussion.

Recent roster: On standby called out to operate from an airport that required a positioning flt as pax, then 4 hours wait before departure for 2 sectors. Legal yes (Just) but the person concered had been up for 20 hours prior to the etd. (why? afternoon standby) with positioning sector no oportunity to get some rest, apart from the 4 hours which were in an airport terminal. Yep company said you should be rested refuse at your peril. CAA comment NONE!:mad: Flt safety whats that!= what cost?

5th Oct 2004, 19:30
This sort of thing has been going on in British Regional (wot aint no more!) part of BACX since I was there in 1994 !! Nobody dared to argue with rostering/crewing and one of them was a 19 year old "work experience" person!

I am happy to be out of that mess!!

Sheikh Zabik
6th Oct 2004, 18:23
Dislike British Regional as one might (and many did)

The fact is that Company:-

1. Was focussed

2. Made good profit.

3. Provided good career progression and opportunity

4. Served its customers well.

6th Oct 2004, 21:14
Sheik Zabik:

- Much like British Airways Regional (BAR) then.

And from your previous post:

"with a management who have only ever been involved with loss making companies."

Yeah right! Think you should check your facts!

Could somebody remind me, what was the original point of this thread?

7th Oct 2004, 06:37
I am sure Dental Floss is just misunderstood, that he is a caring, understanding manager with a history of success behind him, that former colleagues have nothing but deep respect and admiration for him.

But there again I still believe in copper bracelets for rheumatism, the tooth fairy, the Loch Ness monster, the Yeti and Santa Claus.

Perhaps a dose of not answering the phone when not required to, not working when not fit so to do, not going that extra mile to prop up a badly organised operation will perhaps lead to a sea-change in attitude from TDF and higher??

Good luck to all the good guys that I know are getting shafted.


7th Oct 2004, 07:14
What about refusing to "go into discretion"?:D

7th Oct 2004, 08:45
Perhaps that was the extra mile that I was refering to, alledgedly.

7th Oct 2004, 11:32

Are you suggesting that some kind of unilateral work to rule might be effective in advancing your aims?

Is it possible the individual mentioned right at the beginning of this topic, may now be bearing the personal consequences of engineering just such 'difficulties' for the company?

You may need to look a little more carefully at the consequences, actions designed to affect the financial performance of BACX, may have.

As an example, how do you think the BA Board of Directors would view such unlawful action, when considering further investment?

Would they consider it poor management? Or would they consider it an obstructive workforce, who they would be better off without?

It's your call!

7th Oct 2004, 16:19
I can't believe what I've been reading. What a pathetic lot of moaning and whingeing people. I always thought flight deck crew were supposed to be reasonably intelligent - anyone would think that you were being forced to work for BACX; that you were being held hostage and forced to fly aircraft.

If it's so bad why on earth are you still with the company? You're perfectly free to leave if you don't like it - but I guess you'd have nothing to moan about then!

7th Oct 2004, 18:42
As ever, ignorance is not only bliss, but reveals that it doesn't know what it is talking about!

1. jordan (an appropriate name for ignorance) - it is precisely because no-one is FORCED to work for BACX that they are in fact leaving. Our managers told us of overmanning, and the potential for redundancysome twelve months ago. This to an already demoralised and fed-up work force. Surprise surprise, people started leaving, and have continued to do so. The point is that we were NOT overmanned, and are now critically UNDERMANNED!!! Just ask any CX employee how many flights are cancelled on a daily basis. Cabin crew shortages as well as Flight Deck, and for the same reasons. BALPA told them their crewing figures were rubbish, but of course...they knew better. Thus, the situation was brought about entirely by inept management. I applaud my ex colleagues who have left for greener pastures, but it does mean longer days for the rest of us, and hence the discretion element, and the total absence of the morale thing.

2. As for tandem rotor, what bilge! It is quite quite impossible for any BA mainline employee from the comfort of his subsidised and extra-over-paid position, secure in the knowledge that whatever happens, he has a safe golden parachute to either comment, or even UNDERSTAND what it is like from the point of view of a BACX pilot. Rotor and his friends are in a state of denial-contradiction.
They refuse to recognise any aspiration to mainline subsumption, and at least some level of security, yet they contradict themselves by effectively SUPPORTING de la Fosse's methods when they know full well they would never tolerate these things back in mainline. Conclusion can only ever be they are happy to take the extra money and Ts and Cs over their CX Flight Deck colleagues, and now even have the sheer gall to criticise those 'colleagues' for daring to object to practices their parent Company and Union would down tools for! How there is any CRM at all these days astonishes me, but not as much as the slimy, self-serving, pompous, unctuous self-righteous CANT expressed by TR and his colleagues on these pages. I am ashamed to belong to the same hemisphere as these creatures!

I expect my mangement to try and use an ungreased baseball bat, to get it from one's so-called colleagues is more than I can express.

brain fade
7th Oct 2004, 19:03
I always thought 'discretion' was originally created so that a crew, finding itself down route and with insufficient duty time to return home without breaching FTL's, could elect to continue as long as they all felt ok to do the last sector (to get HOME). In other words it's for the benefit of crew, and for the sole purpose of allowing them to legally do the LAST sector despite the FTL's. Or have i got it wrong (again!).

7th Oct 2004, 19:23

When you start getting personal and downright abusive on these pages it just succeeds in undermining your arguement.

7th Oct 2004, 19:43

Don't tar everyone with the same brush.

My pal in CX (secondee) that I mentioned earlier is anything but what you describe above, except of course he does have a ay out.

However he thinks the management in CX a disgrace and the treatment of ALL crew and the manning levels etc a disgrace.

Whilst many BA mainline employees are totally oblivious to life in CX (doesn't really concern a 45 year old 747 copilot living in Chamonix) many would be(are) sympathetic to being pushed around by inept management. We are well versed in it.

As for TR.....it would seem you get more sense out of Normal N.

TR, are you ex Navy by any chance?

If so it would explain a lot.


Sheikh Zabik
7th Oct 2004, 21:00
Cornflake you marr some absolutely spot on points by having too much of a go at Tandem.

He is clearly unrepresentative of Cx pilots being a highly privileged BA secondee doing the same job but on much better terms.

If his colleagues in big BA had one fraction the rubbish that Cx pilots have thrown at them by the ineptitude of Mr Df and his pals then they would be down tools as quick as blink.

As Cornflake pointed out, Mr DF was trying to get pilots to leave a few months ago. Now people are leaving in such numbers because they are so sick of him and the company that CX is recruiting fit to bust and everyone left is taking the strain.

How stupid is it, against this background to petulantly go and suspend a pilot for refusing to go into discretion............thereby reducing further the ability of CX to operate and massively boosting the profits of the likes of Titon whose subcharters are propping up the operation to the tune of hundreds of thousands a month.

This mangement style absolutely characterises the man and his regime which has existed for the past three plus years in CX and some of us hear with great amusement the woes of one recently departed and very sorely unmissed erstwhile colleague of his who returned to Mainline BA................

Anyone in BA on the Airbus fleet like to comment?...................Something to do with CRM I think

:ok: :ok: :D

Ghengis Cant
7th Oct 2004, 21:08
How stupid is it, against this background to petulantly go and suspend a pilot for refusing to go into discretion............thereby reducing further the ability of CX to operate and massively boosting the profits of the likes of Titon whose subcharters are propping up the operation to the tune of hundreds of thousands a month.


The guy sounds as if he deserves a special award.

A P45 perhaps?

8th Oct 2004, 00:10
If anybody would care to start a new thread, regarding the reasons for the existence of mainline secondees in BACX,
then I would welcome the opportunity to respond.

However, that is not the point of this topic.

This thread is either about a captain declining to exercise discretion, OR about a captain deliberately punishing customers for their grievance with the company.

Depending on the precise detail.

That, presumably, is what any investigation will seek to determine.

And for those of you envious of mainline T & Cs, I have great news!

As of Monday, you can all apply to 'big' BA, (just like most of the secondees did!) and your applications will be considered ahead of ALL other similarly qualified applicants!

Good luck.

8th Oct 2004, 03:15
What part of my post do you interprete as inciting ,in your words, "unlawful action". ??
Not illegal to not answer the phone when not required to.
Not illegal to refuse to fly if you are unfit.
Not illegal to refuse to exercise commanders discretion.

I await your full and public apology for your slur on my character.


8th Oct 2004, 03:52
Come on Tandemrotor , can you at least mention how BAR was the only profitable part of BA , pleeeaasssee. It's always worth a laugh........:mad: :mad:

8th Oct 2004, 07:31
If anybody would care to start a new thread, regarding the reasons for the existence of mainline secondees in BACX,....then I would welcome the opportunity to respond.

For Goodness sake Tandem! How about showing a little initiative yourself?

One minute you want to play this game, the next you say you "have lost interest in the thread" (because your privileged and unrepresentative status has been rumbled).

Now you invite someone else to start a thread so that you can respond to it so that you can defend your fat cat package and the big trough of Gravy that you along with a few other BA contract holders have your snouts in to the detriment of the majority of CX pilots who are being asked to accept a wage cut in the form of a pay rise less than half the value of relevant inflation.

Envious...................? Of course the rest of us are!

If I were you, I'd keep my head down, count my blessings,shut up and go back to planning my retirment in a tax haven in the sun.

You are right that there is thread creep here, so lets get it back on course. This is about the abuse of a female pilot who exercised her free will not to work into discretion and a manager who thinks that he has a monopoly on the free will of his pilots.

8th Oct 2004, 09:09
Damn those pesky nigels!

Fancy handing over their aircraft, their route network, and their plush new terminals, and then expecting a few of their pilots to carry on flying there!

Have they no shame!!

And if that's not all, they expect to be paid the same as they were, before us cheap pilots came along!

And we signed up to it, just to get our sticky mits on the work!


8th Oct 2004, 09:28
Sheikh What do you mean? That other manager is doing just fine well sort of. Apparently against the advice of his "co" he did decline to uplift an extra tonne of gas in August when inbound to LHR during those nasty Thunderstorms. Good to see a manager abiding by CIRRUS.

I am sure the passengers did not mind spending 3 hours at Stansted as a result of that decision. I believe the co was less than amused when our management friend suggested leaving Stansted for LHR with min fuel (CIRRUS) but then BA pilot managers are very company orientated.
Rgds BP

Human Factor
8th Oct 2004, 10:07
4468, well done! Rearrange this well known phrase or saying:

Nail on the head, hit.


give me an axe
8th Oct 2004, 11:33
As of Monday, you can all apply to 'big' BA, (just like most of the secondees did!) and your applications will be considered ahead of ALL other similarly qualified applicants!

Well how many BACX pilots do you know that are qualified ie have an A320 / B737 / B777 / B747 rating ???

not too many !!!

Sheikh Zabik
8th Oct 2004, 11:59
Bigpants............I also hear a cheeky little rumour that the man had a wee problem with a line check and then tried to pull rank on his trainer cos he was a bit cross!!!!!!!!

Could never be true............

The point is that this is an insight into the mentality of BA managers passed and present at CX who second safety and the welfare of passengers and their staff to pursuit of their own goals (which presumably have nice bonuses pegged to them)

As to any secondee whose platinum tail feathers have been ruffled:-

Get used to these facts:-

The opinion which you hold of yourselves is not shared by most CX pilots.

Through your own good fortune you are being paid shed loads more money than CX guys to do exactly the same job and your package of benefits is out of all proportion to what your counterparts get. (some will be retiring on pensions of £8000 per annum.....................think about it)

What would you be prepared to do to support better conditions for your colleagues at CX????

Answer. Not a lot

What sort of a mangement is it that thinks this situation will not depress morale and cause huge resentment?

Answer. One that has its trotters in the trough also and has the same Ts and Cs. Mr DF and his mates could have lead from the front and torn up their BA contracts. Instead they kept them and now bawl instructions like some armchair generals from the safety of their bunkers.

Small wonder morale is through the floor and pilots are not interested in going an extra mile for a company that discriminates so apallingly against them.

8th Oct 2004, 12:12

check your PM's

rhythm method
8th Oct 2004, 13:38
4468 and Human Factor,

As you've already got away from the real topic, and as a fairly impartial observer to all this nonsense..

The 'pesky nigels' who operated BAR routes previously are all contracted to what is commonly referred to as Mainline BA. They flew in the regions as a secondment to BAR, but were not employed by BAR. Now here's where I have to admit my confusion. I am under the impression that BAR either no longer exists at all, or is now wholly integrated into the new BA CitiExpress. So surely they should have to return to their own employer and leave the ex-BAR flying to the staff of the merged Brymon/Manx/BRAL/BAR/BACX company?

Another thing mentioned earlier in the thread was that there was a different situation to the CityFlyer merger. CityFlyer 'brought loads of aircraft to the party' whereas BACX have brought nothing...

..again correct me if I am wrong but surely these companies brought 18 Emb145's, 5 BAe 146's, 13 BAe ATP's, 13 BAe J41's, and 12 or so Dash 8's (The actual figures may be different, but I think it gets the point across). The Mainline aircraft that were transferred to BACX (16 RJ's I believe) replaced 2 fleets that have been gifted to other airlines or grounded for no good reason. Had they not been transferred to BACX, they too would probably have been grounded.

NOW... back to the real topic that a captain has been disciplined for refusing to utilise discretion. What particular day/tour was at fault. Having seen some Emb145 rosters which have 4 or 5 sector days rostered within 5 minutes of FTL, why should she or any crewmember feel pressured into helping out an inadequately run organisation. Again, not the fault really of the rostering department, they have only a limited number of resources to work with to try to achieve the schedules.

Finally, the word DISCRETION should have some meaning otherwise, next time ATC ask you to "descend FL150 at pilot's discretion", it really means "descend NOW at expeditious rate to clear all my intermediate levels cos I can't forward plan!".

My tuppence worth.

8th Oct 2004, 18:59
Well said!

Points to ponder:

1. This is a thread about the mistreatment of a well liked and respected female Captain who as has been said, did no more than exercise her legal right NOT to exercise discretion.

2. Part of the problem leading (possibly) to arguments about this use of discretion as an industrial tool is the BA mainliners. Not as human beings, but as overpaid (in CX terms), insensitive and arrogant individuals. Hypocrisy, in stating what would be allowed in mainline but not in CX and vice versa is key to this whole question.

3. The real bit that sticks in my throat, and is often overlooked is the deliberate short sightedness and frank untruths of mainline. To say BACX brought nothing to the table or Company when compared to CityFlyer is specious and incorrect. (Quite apart from theoretically confirming the BA Board as a shower of incompetents were that indeed the case).
CityFlyer were bought mainly to prevent the Wooly Pully from buying them, and secondly because their efficient management (like BACX's) had demonstrated a most un - BA like ability to make a profit in the regions. (How many of the CityFlyer routes are still operated now, and how many profitably?????)
Be that as it may, BACX brough FAR FAR more to the table, like just over ONE THOUSAND HEATHROW SLOTS - as well as those a/c and then profitable routes and aircraft. Yep, count em, three prime time LHR slots every day of the year.
Every year.

For ever!!!!!

Not that we were allowed to keep them for long - I wonder what jumbo wonder jet currently uses them now? This, boys and girls, ladies, gentlement and BA pilots is called ASSET STRIPPING! Just like what you did to DAN AIR.
If any of you platinum wonders think we brought nothing to the table, then think again. Yes we may have been royally shafted, spoken to and treated like children by management and with disdain by you spoilt pack of pseuds, but remember the words of the man -
.... the loser now may be later to win ...... for the times, they are a changin'....... and they certainly are. By dumping on us, you bring your own end that much closer. However, in the words of another immortal, please call a spade a spade, and asset stripping asset stripping, or more appropriately
" Don't p##s down my back and tell me it's raining!!!!!"

BA :yuk: :yuk: :yuk: :mad: :yuk:

Hand Solo
8th Oct 2004, 20:46
The 'pesky nigels' who operated BAR routes previously are all contracted to what is commonly referred to as Mainline BA. They flew in the regions as a secondment to BAR, but were not employed by BAR
BAR was wholly owned by mainline, the ex-BAR cabin crew who are still there are employed by mainline and the handover of the flying positions cost 200 pilot jobs in mainline. Naturally mainline demanded a say, particularly as the mainline pilots, like all BAR crew, had been keeping BAR afloat out of their own pockets by working on substantially poorer conditions from LHR to pay for the operation.

correct me if I am wrong but surely these companies brought 18 Emb145's, 5 BAe 146's, 13 BAe ATP's, 13 BAe J41's, and 12 or so Dash 8's (The actual figures may be different, but I think it gets the point across).

You are wrong. I will correct you. When CFE merged all their aircraft were available to mainline pilots who wished to bid onto them. None of the aircraft you mentioned above were available to BA pilots, only the RJs mainline were handing over. These mostly went to people wanting to keep their jobs in the regions. As BA pilots were going to fly the RJs in BACX it seemed only fair that BACX RJ pilots should have reciprocal access to mainline and that was offered. BACXs BALPA reps turned this down on behalf of all their pilots in preference for.........nothing.

The Mainline aircraft that were transferred to BACX (16 RJ's I believe) replaced 2 fleets that have been gifted to other airlines or grounded for no good reason

So? If BACX choose to give away aircraft thats not the fault of BA mainline, nor is it the responsibility of BA mainline pilots to give up their positions to replace those fleets. Take it up with your management, not our workforce.

Had they not been transferred to BACX, they too would probably have been grounded.

Probably not. The leases are too expensive and they would still be needed to cover the LGW routes now operated by the 737s relased from BAR at MAN.

And one for PoodleVelour

a most un - BA like ability to make a profit in the regions.
Once again, BAR made profits. Read those words carefully. Yourself and some of your colleagues seem to have a problem when it comes to reading and understanding that statement.

Captain Jumbo
8th Oct 2004, 21:35
............"You are wrong. I will correct you. When CFE merged all their aircraft were available to mainline pilots who wished to bid onto them. None of the aircraft you mentioned above were available to BA pilots".................

As you well know, those opportunities were available only because CFE was merged, not kept out in the cold. Had BACX been MERGED, then the same would have been true for the BACX Fleets.

As to BAR profitability...........your management says you made a loss.....who are we mere second raters to disbelieve them? Gosh you poor things, keeping BA afloat out of your own pockets, we shall have to weep. Not making half so great a sacrifice as the BACX guys eh?
Hand Solo - yep, the usual suspect, the usual garbage, the usual BA attitude. No comment I notice about the slots, the contribution, the ethics, the morality - just the same old BA garbage. :}

rhythm method
8th Oct 2004, 21:40
Hand Solo.

Usual innaccurate ramblings of half-truths.

What constitutes the make-up of BACX? The merging of BAR/BRAL/BRYMON/MANX. NONE of these companies exist anymore. The remaining entity BA CitiExpress is also a wholly owned part of the BA group. Therefore, as I posted earlier, as BAR do not exist, there is no need for the secondment arrangement to have been perpetuated. Furthermore, your assertion that the ex-BAR cabin crew are employed by mainline is only half true. They are employed by BACX !!(which is owned by mainline).

You state that BA offered RJ pilots jobs within Mainline. WRONG! No agreement nor arrangement was EVER formally put before the staff (or more crucially BALPA!) to offer such a move. A management led innaccuracy to be as polite as possible. If you can post ANYTHING which shows this offer was ACTUALLY made, and is not another rambling of surreal daydreams floating around in your head, I will apologise, but I don't think I need worry about that.

If the same process as the CFE merger was utilised, rather than the steamroller process which was experienced, it would be a different story. Even if the process was open to 'seconded' pilots only who wished to remain in the regions, it would have been a little fairer. Unfortunately, it was open to anyone to bid BEFORE any BACX pilots would be considered. People getting their first command, while BACX captains were demoted. The process could have been similar to the good old days of Highlands + Islands, getting commands in the regions before bidding back onto the heavy metal in LHR. Unfortunately, this was a one-way only process.

As for your logic that you don't care if BACX gives away or grounds fleets. It has nothing to do with Mainline. WRONG!!!
Mainline 'management' (and I use that word very loosely here) made the decision to ground these aircraft. We had no say in the matter. BALPA were told of the decision, and left to try to come up with a solution to impending base closures, relocations, demotions, etc.

You state that the RJ's would probably not be grounded due to the high lease costs. Oh what Nirvana like planet are you living on. The BAe ATP's and J41's had high lease costs, so some bright spark in Mainline management :hmm: came up with the idea of offloading them to other operators while also giving a £29m incentive to Eastern! Oh, and by the way, who do you think is still responsible for upgrading to EGPWS and TCAS? Yup, BACX will cover that expense as well! Just what school of management do they find these plonkers at?

Finally, cos I'm bored already with the usual "I'm alright Jack" attitude (our pensions are safe so stuff all the new BA DEP's etc!!). You said in one breath that BAR cabin crew and the 'seconded' pilots were keeping BAR afloat, yet in the final paragraph "BAR made profits", pick one line and stick with it!

Au Revoir!

Hand Solo
8th Oct 2004, 23:35
I'm afraid it's the BACX camp peddling most of the half-truths here. It never ceases to amaze me that one minute you're pouring vitriol on the BACX management yet the next you believe every word they say as long as it's bad about BAR.

Firstly, BAR cabin crew ARE employed by mainline. Their contracts say BA. They have not signed contracts that say BACX. They remain in the mainline cabin crew NSP with the right to transfer to mainline.

You state that BA offered RJ pilots jobs within Mainline. WRONG! No agreement nor arrangement was EVER formally put before the staff (or more crucially BALPA!) to offer such a move

No I did not say that. I said they'd have reciprocal access to mainline. That would be by way of a BA seniority number and the right to bid onto mainline fleets after completion of the engagement freeze, exactly like every other BA pilot. The offer was never formally put before the staff because your company council turned it down as they thought it unfair on the non-RJ flyers. I believe they even said as much in a letter to you all, it was common knowledge amongst the BACX posters on this forum at the time.

As for your logic that you don't care if BACX gives away or grounds fleets. It has nothing to do with Mainline. WRONG!!!
Mainline 'management' (and I use that word very loosely here) made the decision to ground these aircraft. We had no say in the matter. BALPA were told of the decision, and left to try to come up with a solution to impending base closures, relocations, demotions, etc.

It has nothing to do with mainline pilots. We have as little control over the beancounters as you. When BAR was closed BA BALPA were were told of the decision, and left to try to come up with a solution to impending base closures, relocations, demotions. The difference was our reps were rather more skilled negotiators and managed to get a reasonable deal out of BA. Which is why we elect them.

You state that the RJ's would probably not be grounded due to the high lease costs
.......and because we still needed them because the B735s wouldn't be released.

You said in one breath that BAR cabin crew and the 'seconded' pilots were keeping BAR afloat, yet in the final paragraph "BAR made profits", pick one line and stick with it!
All BAR staff take a substantial hit on working agreements, pay and lifestyle to fund new aircraft, customers come back happy, BAR makes profit. It's a consistent line if you engage a thought process.

As to BAR profitability...........your management says you made a loss.....who are we mere second raters to disbelieve them?
But you just said they were all liars. Pick one line and stick with it. Or just go through the accounts or dig out some back issues of BA News.

our pensions are safe so stuff all the new BA DEP's etc
I think you'll find it was actually 'work get the best DEPs the best DC scheme in the UK', taking the rather sensible outlook that FSS's are dead in the water and no amount of striking is going to magically make the multi-billion pound pension deficit disappear. Perhaps you should try adopting a realistic stance sometimes.

Ghengis Cant
9th Oct 2004, 06:35
What dreadful thread creep!

What started as a simple topic about discretion seems to have lifted the lid on an absolute can of festering worms..........and more is the worry, CX is a wholly owned subsidiary of BA and "flies the flag"

Not only are unacceptable mangement attitudes revealed.

Industrial relations appear to belong in the dark ages and two groups of pilots working for the same company are hell bent on ripping each others throats out.

The buck stops with Mr Eddington.................yet he appears to have done absolutely nothing about it whilst this abomination apparently bleeds money and, now we hear, pilots (apart from those who have a rather "special" deal).

9th Oct 2004, 08:48
Tragedy really, and very avoidable.

The strength of feeling of and in BACX about all this is still not understood by BA pilots. It is understood by management, but no managements have ever really cared - different basic objectives I suppose.
No-one from BA has yet replied to the case for the asset stripping as described by an earlier post. On those grounds alone, which I confess to not having thought of, BACX brought plenty to the party, but just had it all removed. The tragedy is that BA BALPA worked with BA management to deliberately exclude BACX pilots. I think BA management looked at the mess they had quickly made of City Flyer, and decided the reason for their failure to continue that airline's success was solely due to its new cost base after integration. Hence at once a cast iron reason for addressing BACX in a different fashion, and keeping it separate whatever happens. Now, although a few senior guys in City Flyer were disadvantaged, it was not by much, and BALPA had worked a good deal for most. BACX however NEVER had any support from BA BALPA. Mr Solo and Mr Rotor are being disingenuous at best to pretend otherwise. Worse, when you look at the career progression of top BA BALPA officials into BA management, well.....if it swims like a duck and quacks like a duck, it's usually a duck.
The sad bit is that BA pilots had nothing to lose by supporting a seniority list merger, NOTHING!!! One has to ask oneself, why? A combination, as has been suggested by many others of a majority of disinterest leavened by gross and greedy self-interest.
Now, the squeals to defend their corner are confined to a vocal minority, and the world has moved on. I don't believe it will happen anytime soon, but Eddington will retire, and his replacement will no doubt wish to have a 'big idea'. There's nothing new in aviation, so it will either be 'big is good' and everything will be amalgamated and become even more centralised; or 'small is good' and there will be further sell-offs, franchises, regionalisation or whatever. What BA BALPA appear hell bent on ignoring is that the world has changed, and continues to change for them too. The LCs are not going away and will undoubtedly progress to longer and longer haul; Branson thrives, and BA continue to sing the same old song. Market share will continue to decline, and one day it will be obvious that the business plan is obsolete. What then? Methinks selling 'GO' was a strategic blunder of the galactic nature!

Anyway, I'm sorry to have continued the thread creep, but Solo and his colleagues are just such easy targets, a bit like BA itself. I suppose if you're huddled inside the tent looking out, you can never see the view enjoyed by those outside looking in......

In any event, my heart goes out to you Captain, we have flown together often, I like many know you (and TDLF!) well enough to be quite sure there was nothing dubious about any of your decisions. I look forward to being among the first to congratulate you when the Company apology comes through!

9th Oct 2004, 09:05
Any news regarding the original topic?

9th Oct 2004, 11:09
<<The tragedy is that BA BALPA worked with BA management to deliberately exclude BACX pilots. >>

The very opposite in fact took place so the rest of your comments did not merit further reading.

The BA Balpa pilots persuaded BA management ("over my dead body" was a remark from a BA manager) to offer BACX pilots an opportunity to join the BA seniority list on achievment of an RJ command. This was rejected by the BACX pilots.

If BACX pilots want access to the BA seniority list and opportunities, does anyone have any constructive and realisitc ideas on how to achieve it?

rhythm method
9th Oct 2004, 11:37
Unfortunately, Shaman, this never happened. No offer was ever forthcoming. Perhaps what you say is true; perhaps BA Balpa did manage to convince management to offer positions to BACX pilots, however, it never got to that stage for one reason or another. The "over my dead body" comment may have subsequently caused Mainline management to revert to their previous stance, but I can assure you that no offer EVER was formally made. Anyway, the real point of the thread here should be returned to..

What have the CAA said about this situation?
Which level of manager was responsible for initiating the disciplinary action (I don't believe it is as high as TDLF)?

Let's try to return to and stick to the main thread and allow Solo and TR to return their heads up managerial orifices. They are alright Jack so lets leave them to it. No point lowering ourselves to their cheap jibes and innaccuracies.

9th Oct 2004, 12:26
In reply to Guzzler,

The case is ongoing. The company disciplinary procedure is being followed and 3 1/2 weeks after the event, the Captain is still suspended on full pay whilst the investigating manager interviews witnesses and collect evidence. At some point in the near future, the evidence will be reviewed by a second "Case to answer manager". At that point, a decision will be made as to whether there is no case to be answered, or whether there will be a disciplinary hearing.
As would be expected, the Captain is recieving regular advice and information from BALPA reps and full time Officials. Until the Company indicates what they intend to do, there will be little information.
She is however grateful for all the phone calls and messages of support from fellow pilots during this long waiting period.

9th Oct 2004, 21:31
rhythm method

"No point lowering ourselves to their cheap jibes and innaccuracies."

Review this thread. You will find precious little of either from me, but plenty of both from those spewing bile in my direction for having the temerity of a different viewpoint!

You do neither yourselves, nor BACX (if you care!) any favours at all.

10th Oct 2004, 02:46

However, plenty of arrogance , smugness and disregard for legitimate grievances from your fellow professionals and colleagues.

You are a credit to your company.


The Little Prince
10th Oct 2004, 10:19
Quite right Ken, and unfortunately, they are sadly very representative of their kind.:(

10th Oct 2004, 11:58
As a note of balance to Little Prince, kenfoggo

Tandemrotor is undoubtedly smug and tiresome - empathy is not a quality at which he shines. In general however, I find his irritating attitude not representative of the mainliners in the regions. More proactive support from them would of course be welcome but most have considerable sympathy for our ongoing plight and the subject of this thread.

10th Oct 2004, 13:24
Game, Set and Match!

I rest my case!

Many of you have yet to learn that personalising issues in the way you do, is almost certain to result in you NOT getting whatever it is you want!

Bon chance.

10th Oct 2004, 14:49
The probability is that it would be impossible for any Company, even a large multi-national, to have more more than a very small percentage of the likes of Rotor, Rhythm and Solo within their ranks. The trouble is that like most minorities, they are exceptionally vocal and irritatingly divisive, and hence provoke far more disharmony than they are worth. Can you imagine having to fly with these blokes on a regular basis??
The most notable thing about them is their inability to make any CONSTRUCTIVE comment. They are divisive and negative throughout, they distort, obscure, obfuscate and hinder the aspirations of BACX. A great friend, instructor, (and superior) of mine once defined a good pilot as being primarily one who found reasons for making things happen, for finding ways to complete the mission, rather than for finding reasons why they couldn't. Rotor and Solo are the archetypal opposite. They are keen to make up their own versions of the past, but not content with that, only interested in ignoring suggestions for the way forward, and only ever replying in the negative. They would be as well to say what they mean, which is that they represent a sufficiently large proportion of BA, and hence BALPA to ensure there will never be any proper assistance in progressing things.

It's a bloody good job that the RAF, from 1940 through to today, did not employ their likes. But then, oops, have I strayed into yet another thread?

Back to the real thread, does anyone know if there is a definite time limit set by when our so-called management have to put up or shut up? All very best wishes to ###, I hope she and her family come through this unnecessary strain, and like YS above, I would look forward to the apology - but my money goes on a quiet "We don't intend to pursue the matter in this particular case, but reserve the right to do so at any time in the future..."

We shall see, good luck babe! :ok:

rhythm method
10th Oct 2004, 15:37

you are quite correct that I had unwittingly included you in the 'cheap jibes' bracket (I wouldn't go quite as far as 'game, set and match though). Having re-read your posts on this topic I will admit you have been refrained this time (Call it environmental capture if you will, expecting what wasn't there! :O ). However in the same breath, I still do not agree that you can be entitled to comment that management do not force the issue of discretion, as you are (correct me if I'm wrong again!) on a Mainline contract, and cannot ever have been in the same situation as the unfortunate captain in this incident. It is true that you still have much better T+C's than us lowlife in BACX, so you will not have had to endure the daily slog on an Embraer roster (for instance).

Poodle, as for whether or not you think I am over-vocal, I actually was getting fed up with jibes that BRAL/Brymon/Manx had brought nothing to the table and were therefore not entitled to comment. That is why I decided to shout out in support of my colleagues and try to dispel some of the management myths which have been aired here. If you are CX, then I would have thought the opportunity to level the playing field would be appreciated. Go and chat to any of the Balpa reps if you think I have an unjust slant on the argument. If you were aware of managerial tactics right from the creation of BACX, you would perhaps shout out alongside!.

Finally, I would return to the topic of discretion. Discretion should mean just that.. It is up to your discretion to decide if you feel fit enough to contine a duty beyond FTL's. You should have to justify the use of discretion, not have to justify why you don't use it.

Are we back on thread yet?

Dash-7 lover
10th Oct 2004, 17:19
As usual people have the wrong end of the stick.........2.5% pay offer wasn't rejected. 59% voted in favour and the monies will be in pay packets the end of October. The tally from the union members wasn't positive...

As far as the Captain In MAN being suspended for allegedly 'refusing to go into discretion'... there are two sides to every story..........nuff said!

you lot thrive on bad news....

10th Oct 2004, 21:43
As usual people have the wrong end of the stick.........2.5% pay offer wasn't rejected. 59% voted in favour and the monies will be in pay packets the end of October. The tally from the union members wasn't positive...

Interesting post Dash but somewhat lacking in accuracy on any account.

91 percent voted to reject the pay offer. Only 9 percent accepted. Those are Balpa figures.

So far as "two sides to the story" are concerned. If someone chooses not to exercise their free will choice to extend a flight duty then that is the end of the matter.

Simple really.....................unless you are management who are trying to bend the rules by forcing unsafe work practices.

10th Oct 2004, 21:48
Dash 7 - This is a flight crew forum...we are not interested in the secretary in marketing voting to accept a "real terms" pay cut.

More than 90 % of pilots balloted voted not to accept an offer below RPI...OK

There are two sides to every story but the real story has not appeared anywhere here

I have spoken to this lady and she did not set out to screw the company.

A few facts

1 This is one of the longest BACX four sector days and has caused problems in the past.

2 Operations decided to put her No 1 CC on a different flight and she had to wait for a positioning NO 1 en route from BHX.

3 She did suggest to the company that there may be a problem down route, she knew her own sleep deprivation status (not helped by having a young child and working more than 100% of hours on a 75% roster). Most captains / managers are expected to forward plan and proactively assess situations!

4 The wx in Italy was awful and there are other issues (which it would be unfair to record here) which made a return to Manch a bad idea.

I understand the "is there a case to answer" decision will be made this week.

Back to you Dash 7 it is clear from your post that you are management so understand this.

i - Every pilot I have spoken to has been outraged by the company position.

ii - We are not in the military and will not be bullied / ordered about by the likes of you.

iii - She is one of the most liked / respected and conscientious skippers at Manch.

iv - At the moment BALPA are dealing with the situation...if ,however , they fail there will be industrial action at manch and both it and the reasons for it will find there way into the media and to the travelling public.

nuff said

11th Oct 2004, 06:30
I dont think you will find that the Industrial action is limited to Manchester.

Even the usual head-down merchants have been absolutely rocked by the revelation that management can even attempt to behave like this...................The rest of us have just had enough.

So far as Dash 7 is concerned, his credentials speak for themselves. ("Fraggle Rock" to those of you who dont know is the Isle of Man from whence most of current management eminate and their mangement skills were honed at the academy of bullies. The BA management parachutees apparently felt an affinity to these techniques and subsequently nurtured and adopted them)

11th Oct 2004, 09:05
Dash 7 Lover.

I think you are confusing the pilots with some other staff. So far, the pilots have clearly rejected the 2.5% offer. I guess you are one of the managers who were frantically running around telling everyone that “management never said there wouldn’t be a pay rise” followed by claims that the company was actually offering more than BALPA was asking for. Yea right!

As for Tiny’s comments about the bully boys from Craggy Island:- all true.

The head prefect has long presided over a training system which allocates grading scores over an above the usual pass / fail. For far too long, senior managers and trainers have completely discredited their own system by awarding themselves and their mates grossly over the top scores. Line pilots struggle to get a row off C’s (average), FO’s see their promotion and career dashed by a D, whilst the mob pair themselves up with their usual simulator chum an despite flying very little miraculously pull off a row of Bs with a smattering of perfect A’s. Not only are they undermining the good work of the majority of conscientious hard working dedicated trainers, they are abusing the power and authority vested in them by the CAA.

When trainers are actually teamed up with FO’s in the simulator or for a line check, time and time again, the FO witness the understandably rusty trainer making the same mistakes (retake errors) that the rest of us humans make, only to see the trainer awarded the usual above average row of B’s. Many trainers are embarrassed about this, but this is the culture, they know how they are expected to behave and what is required if they are to keep their position or achieve TRE status.
At the end of the day, most line pilots accept that trainers and managers don’t do much flying and are therefore with the odd exception, they are likely to be a little rusty and only produce an average performance. No one would laugh just because they could only pull of an average performance.

So, Dash, I could be wrong, we could be extremely lucky, our management selection system could have been so good that without exception, all senior managers and trainers also happen to be pure dead brilliant pilots as well as top leaders. It could happen, just as I could win the lottery next week. Sadly, this is unlikely to be the case.

Training should be a full time dedicated post and not something that managers dip into from time to time just to improve their status, title, pay and CV.

11th Oct 2004, 18:48
Rhythm method

Thank you.

I am not here to simply wind people up, and if you looked to my posting history, you would see I am both supportive, and sympathetic to many issues currently ongoing in BACX. I simply have no personal experience of any pressure whatever being put on me to work into discretion. I hope, and believe the management are too sophisticated for that. I say again, this is not MOL we are dealing with!

Which is why I wonder, is this case different?

I am however staggered by the level of personal abuse dished out by people who apparently work for BACX.


'give me an axe'

You may wish to check out www.britishairwaysjobs.com!

It would seem if you have 500hrs, or 100 sectors, on a turbojet, or turboprop, of over 10 tonnes, your 'ship' just came in!

Exactly as I said on the 8th Oct, on this thread!

Good luck!

Sheikh Zabik
12th Oct 2004, 06:23
I simply have no personal experience of any pressure whatever being put on me to work into discretion. I hope, and believe the management are too sophisticated for that. I say again, this is not MOL we are dealing with!

So, just because you haven't experienced it, you "hope and believe" that management are too sophisticated for that!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Your naievety is breathtaking TR.

Once again you demonstrate that you are on a different planet from the rest of us CX pilots.

So far as trumpetting that "Our ship has come in" over access to BA. Again your desire to take the mangement line hook line and sinker (well you would wouldn't you as you are one of TDF's special secondee boys whom he looks after so very well).

The reality is somewhat different.

The " offer " is actualy a totaly cynical smokescreen to give the illusion that some status attaches to being a BACX pilot, when in reality it does not.

There is a body of violently anti BACX pilots in mangement of BA one senior one of whom is on record as saying "over my dead body will CX pilots have access to BA"

The offer confers no material advantage whatsoever.

It is not based on seniority.(thereby extremely divisive.........here we go again the BA preferred device of "divide and rule")

All the BA psychometric tests have to be done.

THe BA sim assessment has to be done.

There is the interview to check that you are the "right stuff"

So even if you are a trainer who has trained your many BA cadets who we looked after, you still have to go through all the above.

Oh yes, get this..................If you are accepted by BA and fail to subsequently make the grade then CX will not have you back!

Open your eyes Tandem Rotor. You are no friend to CX pilots.

Hopefully this discretion malarky is coming to a head soon.
Doubtless management will try to slip out the backdoor with a "no case to answer"..................well TDF and co, dont think you are going to get away with it.

Nothing less than a full retraction and apology with compensation for the victim will satisfy us.

12th Oct 2004, 06:35
As a mere observer I must point out that at LHR BA is big on 'Equality and Diversity'. Sadly it does not seem to be the case for yourselves in one or two of these threads. Surely it should be the same for both.

12th Oct 2004, 10:16
It would be better to start a new thread if the issue is more one of CitiExpress versus mainline flight crew and previous history. But just a word of caution the presence of mainline pilots is really a sideshow to the main event.

Specifically can your managment run CitiExpress effectively? TDLF's performance suggests otherwise and the suspension of this Captain appears typically heavy handed.

There are two dangers. First, CRM and general team work appear to be strained between the two communities. Don't let this end in a serious incident. Second while all of this arguing is going on the management at LHR might quietly be arranging to hand over work/aircraft to someone else.

If you want to make a go of CitiExpress deal with the management issues/mistakes etc. Get this Captain back on duty and try and speak to Head Office not TDLF.
Good Luck BP

Norman Goering
12th Oct 2004, 12:41
Just for the record (and original thread lead....) can someone clarify the point of "planned" discretion?

i.e. 4 sector day, starting and finishing at home base. By leaving home base to complete sector 3 you know you may/will need to use discretion to complete sector 4 to return home.

Is this "planned" or not?

Long Pilot
12th Oct 2004, 13:56
Divide and Conquer!

Please dont swallow it folks!!

Ghengis Cant
12th Oct 2004, 17:04
There are two dangers. First, CRM and general team work appear to be strained between the two communities. Don't let this end in a serious incident

With all the dissaffection revealed by this thread I'd say that flying CX should carry a serious health warning.

12th Oct 2004, 19:43
:D Completely OT, I know, but more morale boosting news today with the arrival of the 'Bid' letter; 2 Dash 8s gets the chop at SOU (tho' the lucky few get a jet salary), the 146 fleet might go and of course everybody will flock to the 145 going into BRS which might last 6 months or until the next management team brainfart, whichever is the sooner. The whole letter was littered with the get outs 'latest plans' and 'things could change at short notice' - and these buffoons are expecting the guys and girls to make potentially life changing decisions based on nothing more than the latest 'good idea'.

The shambles continues and this debacle over 'discretion' is simply symptomatic of the base levels to which the company has sunk in such a short period of time.

Mark Lewis
12th Oct 2004, 20:59
With the Dash 8s leaving SOU will that see an end to the BRU and MAN routes, or will they go ERJ?

The Little Prince
12th Oct 2004, 21:15
I was told BRU will stop, and MAN go to the ERJ. However, we know EDI & GLA lose money because of lack of marketing and support. They are only kept going to prevent even more FlyBe expansion, but that won't work. FlyBe (unfortunately for us) have shown how agressive marketing of a consistent product works. BA have no idea, unless it be constant retreat.

What's this about the 146 Fleet going, I hadn't heard that one! Does that mean the Rock is finally for the chop?

On thread, as it were, does else anyone else think the whole discretion business was actually an example of intimidation aimed at bullying crews into more submission? Well done Maam, they picked the wrong lady and the wrong pilot workforce.

(Note I got through an entire post without slagging BA mainline pilots - amazing, I must keep taking the pills!:E )

13th Oct 2004, 20:17
I suggest you all get out of CitiExpress at you first opportunity. I did 2 years ago when you all got your first shafting.

I have never looked back and now with the future orange, I wish I made the move years ago.

Good luck guys, your all going to need it.

(Damian, forget about having BA painted on the side of your aircraft, time to move on pal! Still using the Rhythm method?)

rhythm method
13th Oct 2004, 21:39
Yeah, and with the second one due after 18 months of marriage, you can tell how good the method is!!!!

13th Oct 2004, 22:02
I suggest you all get out of CitiExpress at you first opportunity.

I did 2 years ago when you all got your first shafting.I have never looked back and now with the future orange, I wish I made the move years ago.

Good luck guys, your all going to need it.

Hmmm, is this why Easyjet's stocks are dropping faster than a whore's drawers, and Easyjet are having to look at bases abroad because they have stagnated in the UK?

I don't think i'd be wanting to wear orange in the next few years.

14th Oct 2004, 07:39
As a member of the flight crew community I have always found it easy to deal directly with the 'management'. On the occasions I have had to deal with them they have been both sympathetic and understanding of my views. As such solutions to my issues have been found in a positive and agreable manner.

As a few have already said it is a shame a small minority feel the need to personalise thier thoughts against others. In my view this not only demeans us in CX but aired in such a public manner does little for our status in the wider community.

With reference to the recent incident of a Captain being suspended, I doubt either we or the management have the full picture of what actually happened. As such is it right that we are effectively prejudging the outcome ?

In my short experience as long I can justify my actions I feel I have little to worry about.


14th Oct 2004, 09:51
Then, Pfer, I do so hope that you never get into a situation where you find yourself in a disciplinary hearing. You may find your view of the 'management' somewhat changes.

Ghengis Cant
16th Oct 2004, 06:56

What's happened to this unfortunate woman?

Has her suspension been confirmed?

Empty Cruise
23rd Oct 2004, 12:08
I have personal experience of working for TDF and I happen to know that he is not the honourable gentleman he likes to think he is. He is also a 'bender of the truth'. Don't think that's swearing is it? My advise to any pilot with BACX, get another job asap. If all you BACX lads have any balls then you will walk out in protest of this outrageous behaviour. This jerk needs to be taught a lesson.

23rd Oct 2004, 19:19
Funny comment that - not helped by having a small child -
Well perhaps she has her priorities wrong!

23rd Oct 2004, 19:31
That's a funny statement. Have I missed something, or have there been some more anonymous editings with posts being removed without explanation?

Empty Cruise - you are a very restrained gentleman. Your views of TDLF are to the point. TDLF is intelligent, and by that measure alone, he must know deep inside that the hypocrisy he spouts is just that. Like many ambitious but unscrupulous managers/politicians before him, he will never listen to reason, because that is not his remit. Cutting costs, rationalisinfg workforces, improving productivity - earning his KPI bonuses - that's all he and his kind are good for. UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES TRUST HIM - OR ANY OF HIS BROWN NOSED LAP DOGS, (particularly the ones who have already managed to secure mainline management contracts!:yuk: :yuk: :yuk:

26th Oct 2004, 17:58
What has being a parent got to do with refusing to exercise Capt's discretion?

please explain.

27th Oct 2004, 04:57
Sparkel - That is exactly what I wanted to know?

28th Oct 2004, 21:19
You sound like you think that pilots shouldn't have kids. may be that's not what you meant.

30th Oct 2004, 12:51


People were asking for the full picture and that is what I presented.

In terms of this Captains sleep deprivation status (which IS relevant to the discretion decision) the couple of an intensive 75% roster and a young child mean there is a good chance she was tired on the day.

If you have never seen one of BACXs 75% rosters, working 90 flying hours each month, you may not appreciate what that means.

Every day from Manchester ends up as a double CPH ; OSL/DUS and indeed the Glasgow Bologna that this thread relates to.

Very long four sector days in busy European airspace leave you tired during the time you are working. Like it or not if you have a young child who is not sleeping that cannot be put in a box and left outside the equation (any more than you would try to discount your own lifestyle issues).

Just in case it is not clear I'll say it again. This was written in the context of the Captains sleep deprivation status OK

The latest is that the company have decided that there is a case to answer and the Captain will be disciplined.

This could be anything from a verbal warning to the bullet. BALPA appear to have a watertight defence but it will be another week before the hearing is held.

30th Oct 2004, 19:34
The BALPA chair person for BACX is a very experienced operator, whose own 'interfaces' with TDF and his chums are well known. The lady Captain in question should have no worries about the outcome of this one - the REALLY good thing is that it may just prove to be a watershed in the way this pox-rotten Company runs its rosters. If, or rather, when BALPA win their case and the Company has to back down, I think it will encourage a lot more people who have intimidated in the past to stop taking the bulldung. This so-called disciplinary hearing may be the largets mistake TDF etc has made. But then, HE was probably too wily an operator to have done it, you can bet your life it was instigated by AY EN OTTHER manager. I just wish I could be a fly on the wall during the disciplinary, hopefully we'll get a transcript on here not long after.

JA, MB - All the luck in the world, but I don't believe for one minute that you will need it! :ok:

30th Oct 2004, 21:36
I do apologise for not having read the whole thread through from beginning, but I gather it is about exercising discretion; and the disagreement between those rather macho beings who feel you should always do so, and those more thoughful beings who feel it should be used with discretion.

Moons ago I had the misfortune to work for an outfit who had financial difficulties. (the first of many). They were non-union. They had a winter contract to West Africa with a horrendous night duty schedule. It was not possible within normal FTL, but was rostered as if it was. Every flight went into discretion. The crews thought they were 'doing the company a favour'. After 1 year the contract was lost and went to another local airline, who was union. After 6 flights, where everyone went into discretion, it was obvious the roster was rubbish. The union refused it anymore, the local CAA was involved, and the crews had to stop- over rather than up & down in the night.

The use of discretion had been abused. It was not the first time, but when exposed, it was the most obvious. How the CAA had allowed it with the previous company for so long is another question many CAA's have to answer, but that's another story. The simple fact is that the airline had abused the discretion principle for years, and it was only when someone said NO, that the scam was exposed. It should not be thus.

This case may not be such in this case, but anyone who glibbly says that discretion should always be exercised is a nutter. It is they who have allowed the profession to sink into its present depths of disregard by managment. Keep the op' going by all means, but do not allow yourself to be abused and taken for granted.

You would not take an a/c if the MEL said NO. Why apply FTL's any differently?

30th Oct 2004, 22:59

Don't apologise for not reading the whole of the thread, the overwhelming majority of it is utter drivel, regarding personalities. (Wait for the pathetic, and highly personal attacks coming MY way in the next few posts!)

I would recommend you read the post on page 3 by GWYN however, since this may just give you a hint that, perhaps this is not actually about discretion at all!

But of course, that MAY be precisely why the company are looking more closely at it. There may BE no case to answer, on the other hand, perhaps there is! I guess we will know soon.

Only a thought of course!

The Little Prince
31st Oct 2004, 09:56
Once again the illuminating and intellectual level of TR bubbles to the surface, a bit like watching a flute of champagne. We are so fortunate to have such well balanced and impartial observations on the forum, most particularly when they quote other - specifically hypothetical - posts.
Rat 5, you are clearly a discerning operator with experience of Companies who misuse both CAP371 and the discretion system. Thank you for your contribution, involving more factual data which may be mulled over by all those currently following this particular case. I know - for whatever reason - it is not clear how long TR has worked for the BRAL environment, and in the course of his lucid briefing, he fails to expand on that point (an unusual omission). However, I suggest that to to take my learned colleague's point a little further, whilst agreeing you should not apologise for not having read all of the thread, and whilst agreeing there is certainly a huge amount of drivel on it, (mostly from individuals with very limited exposure to our wonderful Company and its methodology - I shall leave it to your own good judgement to decide whether they may be people with ten or more years with the outfit, or recent secondees from mainline) I must make a point. That is to say that if you DO have the time, there are some very good points made, most particularly when you get outside the personal childish rhetoric employed by some who may be considered to think they are in some way superior.

Please do read the thread, and better yet, if you know any genuine BACX guys and gals, or meet them on the chat forum - well, ask them what they think. As a final consideration, I suppose it is worth pointing out that evidently BALPA consider they have a watertight case - and they are not basing their argument on one admittedly hypothetical posting early in the development of this event.

Have a good day TR, in the very best Chinese sense, I hope you get everything you wish for.

31st Oct 2004, 16:46
Is it BACX BALPA or the main BALPA which is supporting this? Oh, and I thought the Farmer Gyles was the main man at BACX BALPA?
Good luck girl, but I don't think you'll need it!:ok:

31st Oct 2004, 18:18
G'Day Little Prince.

Perhaps in the light of your aggressively critical last post, you would be good enough to spell out the inaccuracies of my hypothesis. Please restrict yourself to facts.

31st Oct 2004, 20:46
On page 10 of this thread Sheik Zabik wrote:

Doubtless management will try to slip out the backdoor with a "no case to answer"

But in his most recent post RMC wrote:

"The latest is that the company have decided that there is a case to answer and the Captain will be disciplined."


And for the Tiny Prince, thank you for hoping I get everything I wish for, but actually, I'm not currently wishing for anything I don't already have!

Perhaps the same can't be said for you?

Bon chance.

The Little Prince
1st Nov 2004, 17:42
Hello to all:

Gwyn - I'm not sure quite what you mean by references to my 'aggressive' post. As far as a reference to your own post, the one referred to by Mr Double Wocka Wocka, I merely mentioned what you and he both agreed - ie that it was an admittedly hypothetical situation you addressed! On re-reading my own post, I can find no reference to calling your's inaccurate! To quote myself "basing their argument on one admittedly hypothetical posting " is the only reference to your own verbiage! Your argument was a good one, but, as you yourself said HYPOTHETICAL!!! I speak from the experience of twelve years within BRAL /BACX, and hence may be thought, (by some) to have more appreciation of 'the big picture' than a 'wet behind the BACX ears' mainline secondee!

Mr Tandemrotor - mmmmmmmmmmmmm indeed. Perhaps better qualified literary scholars than I can interpret your meaning there. I hope I am wrong in deducing an inferral of guilt on the part of the Captain, even our jugheaded management haven't gone that far!
I'm glad you have everything you can wish for, I hope things don't change for you; however I am surprised that speaking from such a self-avowedly self satisfied, (perhaps SMUG) position, you are perfectly placed to see the difference between yourself and those of the rest of us with BACX who are not quite so fortunate, and who have seen their careers, pay, conditions, whereabouts, total LIFE completely altered by the 'BA WAY' of doing things.

Your empathy is quite astounding to mere mortals like us, but very representative of mainline BA! :yuk:

Carnage Matey!
1st Nov 2004, 20:17
And speaking from your twelve years of BRAL/BACX experience and zero years of BA mainline experience you are, of course, perfectly qualified to state what is representative of BA mainline. Perhaps you should stick to what you know.

1st Nov 2004, 20:50
Little Prince

"Your argument was a good one, but, as you yourself said HYPOTHETICAL!!!"


As I read it it this thread was primarily about the suspension of a captain for allegedly refusing to work into discretion. I put forward a hypothesis, and though I have read most of the 18 pages of this thread, I have yet to read a post that describes all the facts of what happened, and most of it is more or less irrelevant to the initial incident. That was precisely why I asked you to restrict yourself to the facts of this case. Evidently you either do not know them or are not prepared to divulge them here.

You may have innumerable years of experience of that particular company, but it doesn't appear to have informed you of the actual circumstances of this case. It is clear that there is a great deal of dissatisfaction there, and in particular with management and certain individuals - I might flippantly ask, "Show me the airline where that is not the case." No matter what the quality or actions of 'management' however, it cannot excuse a captain who refuses to fly simply because (s)he feels hard done by, or wishes to harbour a grudge, or some other reason. IF discretion was required, then fine, (s)he has every reason to refuse, but I have seen amongst all the commendable 'knee-jerk,' reflex defence of a colleague, no comment about the possible scenario which I described. Nor, I have to say, have I read anyone saying that what I outlined as a possible scenario, was not in fact real.

I trust that the next post might enlighten us all as to the facts.

Cattle Class
1st Nov 2004, 21:39
Perhaps your position somewhat prejudices your comments - try taking command of a flight, operating and taking charge of a European multi-sector flight and making these decisions for yourself - you might come up with a different answer from the one you get sitting in the comfort of Nav Services? Sorry I forgot you aren't a pilot.
Have you made a witness statement?

The Little Prince
3rd Nov 2004, 17:40
It's a bit like trying to explain colour to a blind man!:O

Carnage M. I would suggest that there are no mainline pilots flying mainline aircraft with BACX secondees in their LHS earning dramatically more than them. There are a lot of these in BACX. There are no BACX managers making a horses ass of BA mainline - There are some of these in BACX. No-one in BA has been subject to having all their SOPs and routines, bases, rosters and lives turned upside down by BACX management. The converse is completely true of we here in BACX. Thus, yes, I do feel qualified to speak about BACX after (actually) 13 years, and yes, I DO feel qualified to comment on the BA "WAY" of doing things.
I suggest your attitude is entirely typical of BA, your inability to empathise, and you and your colleagues' stunning quasi-political ability to answer a post by missing the point entirely. I surrender!:(

Gwynn - are you BA or maybe a wannabe? As above, first you attack me for a supposedly aggressive post. I point out all I did was (accurately) suggest you made a hypothesis. You reply by flaming me and quote more hypotheses. Actually, I do happen to know the facts of this case, I think there are quite a number of BACX people who do. In deference to due process, no-one has yet told the exact story, it would be unprofessional, and not the best way forward for the lady involved. However, as you should well know, the facts do not always matter when managerial 'honour' has to be upheld. Equally though, I note that none of you have commented on the BALPA legal support, which is interesting. As you know, BALPA only support cases they think will succeed, so regardless of the rights, wrongs or fact, they must feel there is a good case to present.

The one FACT I would suggest here is that non-BACX postees should quit criticising the 'malingering' potential of refusing to go into discretion. They should speak to any of the ERJ fleet and ask about the rosters and the fatigue levels. They should read the post by Rat 5, and consider whether they should be supporting a brother (sister) pilot on principle!!!!!!! who works for a Company like BACX, or ANY company which treats its employees like ours does.
To pontificate from the comfort of a golden parachute is faintly obscene, and certainly nauseous.

However, count it as a victory for TRotor and CMatey and Hansolo and all the rest of you. I really shall be quiet on this issue other than again, (as has been noticeably absent in some quarters) close by wishing her all the very best of luck, and good fortune, and a swift and successful end to this farce. She, like most of us, deserves better. The one thing I CAN say for a FACT, which seems to be more than most of my detractors, is that I know the lady personally - there is simply no possibility that this discretion refusal was anything other than professional!:ok:

Human Factor
3rd Nov 2004, 18:15
No-one in BA has been subject to having all their SOPs and routines, bases, rosters and lives turned upside down by BACX management.

In as much as I can't now leave LHR/LGW to return to my original base and fleet, which was always the intention, you're wrong I'm afraid.

3rd Nov 2004, 18:28

You asked for some facts ( I hear what you say LP but there are too many false statements being made on this and it is not fair to the pilot in question)

I have today seen a three page document which is an independently produced factual summary of all the witness statements taken.

This annihilates the company position that there is a case to answer but (as the company is currently pulling furiously on all the rope they are being given to hang themselves) its distribution is being delayed so they can take some more.

In summary though the report provides evidence that

1- This Captain ,in seven different situations, took action to expedite proceedings on the day

2-The central pillar of the company case rests on a rule referred to by two managers. Unfortunately for them they have not checked their facts and are out of date. The current company procedure was correctly followed by the Captain , is documented in the company procedure manual and has been verified previously in writing by another company manager. The position advocated by these two managers is not documented anywhere

3- Due ,in part,to a totally missleading report from an Operations Controller the investigating officer has (i)assumed incorrect slot times and (ii) actually been duped into believing there was a critically timed slot (when in fact it never existed).

4-Regarding your hypothetical slot situation, the pax were all off loaded in BLQ (after she had made up time on the MAN - BLQ sector) with only 10 mins left before she went into discretion.

In terms of an "accident chain of events" most of the normal links were present

The skipper was tired ,hungry (as both flight deck had only been given one vegy sandwich to share between them) and understandably wound up by the unprofessional venom of the Operations Controller ; the F/O was also tired , hungry and inexperienced on type. The wx at departure and destination was bad / deteriorating and they were on the final sector of a maximum duty four sector day.

BACX's other major gripe (the decision not to load fuel in BLQ) was taken at destination when it was clear that the aircraft could not return before going into discretion. As such it had no impact on the ability of the aircraft to complete a 10 min turn around and avoid discretion.

Cattle Class
3rd Nov 2004, 20:32
....and just why was the original cabin crew moved to another aircraft after the first two sectors, thus creating the knock-on delay awaiting replacement crew in a taxi from BHX? GWYN was this part of your doing or were you just flat out (yawn) working on slot improvals?

3rd Nov 2004, 20:45
Oh tiny prince

You speak, apparently enviously, of mainline secondees sitting in their (your?) LHS earning dramatically more money. My friend, if they are sitting in YOUR left hand seat, comfort yourself in the knowledge that Captains generally do earn more than co-pilots! If, for some reason, they are not in YOUR LHS, what is your problem?

Pilots working for MANY other companies will be earning different amounts to pilots in BACX. Mainline secondees have a different employer to you, BUT have, in many cases, been working from the same bases, on the same routes, in the same colour scheme, with the same cabin crew, for the SAME employer for many years.

YOU are the one who is "wet behind the ears" in this operation. You are the interloper, NOT those you denigrate!

In any case, you should be more grateful, for without their presence, BACX could not have been 'gifted' this particular train set, or trains, at all!

Can you see the irony in all this?

Two years ago, all anybody heard was how, people like you could do the regional job so much cheaper than those expensive mainline guys (who perhaps single handedly prevented BAR from EVER making a profit!)

Now you have your feet under the table, all we hear is how you deserve the same T & Cs as the people you displaced!!


You got the gig, because you are cheap! So enjoy your 'success!' Why do you expect support from those you displaced?

Like me!

Good luck with the application! (Oh, and try not to mention your pprune name at the interview, won't you!)

3rd Nov 2004, 21:34
4468, I have to admit my junior friend Little P is right, (I have 16 years in!). Why do you guys have to start losing the thread? You've seen the argument; and thanks to RMC you've been given the facts. That is pretty much the story as I understand it too.
But what do you do? You just carry on the slagging!
Mr Human Factor - I would be keen to know which BACX management had a hand in whatever happened to you at LGW? I suspect you mean it was actually YOUR lot, the same ones who have screwed us over for the last three or four years.

Get the thread back on track, support the girl, support the pilot fraternity. In the name of Goddalmighty, I have never ever heard such petty bickering and point scoring other than in the BA company forum - in the days when we knew the password and used to larf and larf and larf. You guys deserve your management, you joined it. Don't blame US for resenting it!

Now, about this company climbdown.:=

Essex Girl
3rd Nov 2004, 22:21
4468 you are such a big girls blouse. You and your mainline girls and boys are just like you, winge winge, whine whine, and they certainly won't go anywhere near discretion (even tho I've offered mine on many a time).

Poor M she was worn to a frazzle and did the only thing anyone sensible would have done.

Mind I've heard it's dear old Uncle John carrying out the hearing, so sure you'll be ok. Think they all realise they have messed up and just want to get out pointing the blame on others now. Wonder what the Sun would make of it all?

lots of love


Human Factor
3rd Nov 2004, 22:24
Mr Human Factor - I would be keen to know which BACX management had a hand in whatever happened to you at LGW? I suspect you mean it was actually YOUR lot, the same ones who have screwed us over for the last three or four years.

I'm willing to bet that one or two are the same people. ;)

However, I'm sick of the Little P constantly going on about how the mainline secondees are stealing his job, when CX took the jobs from mainline pilots in the first place. Sorry.

4th Nov 2004, 10:57

'You got the gig, because you are cheap!'

You lost the gig because you were too expensive.

And your left-over cabin crew inhabiting the MAN crewroom continue to be so. Our management will pick on the weak (eg the subject of this thread) but are too gutless to tackle real labour cost drains - which also include many of themselves.

4th Nov 2004, 19:30
BA Cabin crew.....we could go on at length there. They do an adequate enough job when airborn, but it's a trial getting them there! Their insistence on 'working to rule' as it were is incredible, there is no Company loyalty at all, all they're interestd in often enough is arriving late to collect whatever package that attracts.
Why am I mentioning all this? Because it directly relates to some of the stuff published about discretion, and whether discretion is optional or Company authorised! Most pilots I know will go that extra mile to get the job done, but that dosen't mean everyone has to. I've seen people come in to work with a cold, because they thought they should - STUPID!!! And now, we have a thread xyz pages long where some people, more notably BA mainline people seem inclined to criticise the lady Captain's command authority decision.
Thanks for the facts btw, I didn't know all of those items. What I would like to know (from anyone who genuinely knows) is whether or not the CAA have been involved, officially or via CHIRP? They must surely have a ruling on whther a discretion decision may or may not be challenged by the Company after the event? It seems pretty rum to me that no-one so far has apparently asked them.

Anyway, all the best to M, I'm sure if Essex Girl is right and JA is i/c the hearing then it will all prove to be a storm in a teacup.

Oh, b4 I forget, Max Reheat - WELL SAID!!! Every syllable an accurate one. And for our reluctant colleague Human Factor, it would have been impossible for any of our BACX management to have any part in the LGW decision, because we weren't bought until after that. Of course, it may have been one of our current mainline slimeballs working down there at the time, but my association with Big Airways most fortunately does not go that far back.

5th Nov 2004, 23:33

(that says it all for a start) 'left over cabin crew inhabiting the crew room' - not very nice is it? The BAR crew joined BA - not BRAL or Manx or Brymon. They have a set of terms and conditions which they would quite rightly like to hang on to - oh and it was their crew room long before it was yours mate - don't forget that. If you want to join mainline try the application and selection process. Sounds to me like the back door would suit you much better though......enjoy CitiExpress

6th Nov 2004, 10:05

I would remind you that your less well off and less cosseted colleagues who share the CITIEXPRESS crew room with you did not ask to be associated with BA.

The BAR cabin crew have a very enviable (albeit industrially archaic) set of T&Cs which they, understandably, wish to preserve and the BACX management are, and I'll say it again, too gutless to do anything about. Nevertheless, teh ex BAR people are now working (when they deign to) for a company which does not offer its cabin crew T&Cs and pay remotely approaching those they enjoy. The creation of BACX, whichever way you look at it, was to put BA's shorthaul UK regions into Europe services on a lower cost base and the ex BAR cabin crew are an anomoly in that equation which needs sorting out.

I'm not sure that anywhere in my post did I allude to aspirations to work for Mainline. If the calibre of the hired-in mainline management BACX has is any reflection on those in mainline then I wouldn't touch it with a bargepole.

And don't call me 'mate'.

6th Nov 2004, 10:47
Very eloquently put MaxReheat - (do I detect a Cranwell education thereabouts?)

On message so as to speak, does anyone know a date for this supposed 'hearing' or whatever? When will the stress and strain be off poor old M?

We're all rooting for you girl, don't worry!



6th Nov 2004, 11:59

You wrote:

"I'm not sure that anywhere in my post did I allude to aspirations to work for Mainline."

I have to say

I'm not sure that anywhere in Mactom's post did he allude to 'ACTUALLY' working for mainline! (Or BACX!)

You also wrote:

"The creation of BACX, whichever way you look at it, was to put BA's shorthaul UK regions into Europe services on a lower cost base"

We agree

But now read my earlier post regarding "feet under the table"

It's a conundrum isn't it!

6th Nov 2004, 13:51

Nope - didn't grace the steps of Sleaford Tech.

And yes, best wishes to our unfortunate colleague.

6th Nov 2004, 19:55
If I'm missing something, please correct me, but if the back door route to BA is being taken over, like BCal, Danair, Cambrian(I bet you've never heard of them) etc..., and losing your command and seniority, then how is that an easier route to a BA command than remembering to turn up for an interview, then being sponsored for your ATPL and type rated and well paid, and then jumping the queue by bidding for the regions to get a command ahead of your mates on the 400?

Oh, and if you do get stuck at LHR/LGW and you don't like it, then surely you do what the rest of us do, hand in the old notice and move to another company.

Again, if I'm missing the plot, let me know, but a BA secondee seems to be a very rare beast - a BA pilot who sounds wholeheartedly pro management!! not many of you around and rightly so.

Would it be asking too much for a little bit of grace on this forum from the BA mainline employees and a little bit of insight into the genuine problems faced by your colleagues at BACX?

rhythm method
6th Nov 2004, 20:16
Nice posting hec7or.

We do realise though that it is only a very small minority (though very vocal!) who are so anti BACX. The thread should be about abuse of a captains right to exercise (or not) discretion. Smug comments from those with elevated T+Cs who will never be put into the same situation as the unfortunate and highly respected lady in question have sadly brought this into the usual 'them and us' slanging match.

Let's not forget we are supposed to be professionals ( and perhaps even mature with it).

Let's forget the 'them and us' and replace it with 'WE'. WE should be fighting for one another. Divide and conquer is such an old tactic, yet is still being used as ground rule 1 for our management.

6th Nov 2004, 21:02
Good point RM, except, it's not just the Captain's right, it goes for the whole crew. Just a small point but we all have our part to play in this game.

6th Nov 2004, 22:31

That's right - you can't have it both ways can you?


So the profitability of the whole CitiExpress operation rests on the costs associated with the ex BAR cabin crew then does it?
I think not. Let's not forget they didn't ask to be associated with a company with T's and C's like yours either. I'd love to see you in a similar situation to the BAR cabin crew - you'd be the first one dripping on about how unfair it all was on this forum....4468 is far too clever for the likes of you.

7th Nov 2004, 09:36

You are wrong.

It is called "Captain's" discretion for a very good reason. It is NOT called "crew's" discretion.

Any crew member who does not feel fit to continue may, indeed should, offload themselves. This may, or may not, prevent the flight from dispatching, but they would not be exercising "Captains" discretion.

Only trying to stop you getting yourself into trouble, through not understanding the rules, you understand

Cpt CadetEntry Pilot
9th Nov 2004, 18:41
Nice to see the thread getting back on track......

Earlier comments refer to BA Mainline pilots not excercising discretion. I've used it 8 times in the last year and that tends to be the rule not the exception. We also have trips rostered regularly to a few minutes away from max FDP.

I wish the unfortunate scapegoat the best of luck in the following weeks/months and ALL pilots at CityExpress, do the honourable thing and wind your necks in, be it seconded or not. This thread became a disgrace to our profession and until page 13 was embarassing for any UK pilot.

There's 'thread creep' and there's thread 'creeps'. Try not to be second one, eh?

9th Nov 2004, 19:13
And anyone with a saintly, 'holier than thou', righteous, nauseating comment like that would fall fair and square into category 2!

BTW, it's "exercising"!! not "excercising" !!:ok:

9th Nov 2004, 19:53
I wish Capt M that she has the strength to pull this through. It sounds like fossi wants, like mentioned above, to make a scapegoat out of her. It's incredible!

I think what would be appreciated if all the pilots and CC for that matter would pull together and work to rule, and not think: I'm allright Jack! Because: It could be YOU!

She needs our support please: Let's not let her down!

10th Nov 2004, 07:30

The work to rule (at least) is coming but not while the case is sub judice.The pilot workforce is getting to hear the facts about this case - most of those who thought "there was no smoke without fire" now know otherwise. We have to wait for the company to make its decision; if that is anything other than total exoneration then there will be indeed trouble brewing at Citi Express during December.

10th Nov 2004, 09:12

Since you clearly have never been a captain, and very probably aren't even a pilot, shall we take your 'opinions' with just a pinch of salt?

From your posting history, you can't even have worked for BACX for much more than 12 months, if that!

If you work for BACX at all!

Perhaps you just have friends involved, in which case, your loyalty is admirable.

10th Nov 2004, 17:26
What a patronising S.O.B. you are!!!:yuk: Posting history necessarily bears no resemblance to time 'in Company', as anyone should know! When I joined this organisation, a Spectrum ZX was the height of technology, so Pprune didn't even exist! Captain or Effoh makes no difference to views, or indeed the ability to 'work to rule'. If the Effoh, or the Number three says they are too fatigued, the Captain will have to exercise his discretion unless a replacement can be found.

Let me be absolutely clear, specifically for the info and clarification of 4468. I am a senior Captain on one of the Jet Fleets at Manchester, with over ten years in this outfit.

RMC said:
"The work to rule (at least) is coming but not while the case is sub judice.The pilot workforce is getting to hear the facts about this case - most of those who thought "there was no smoke without fire" now know otherwise. We have to wait for the company to make its decision; if that is anything other than total exoneration then there will be indeed trouble brewing at Citi Express during December."

He/she is absolutely correct, at least as far as all my colleagues and friends are concerned at Manchester. I cannot speak for Brum, but understand the feelings are equally strong. It is seen on two fronts:
1. As mentioned, the smoke/fire thing is now being correctly dispersed, few are in any doubt about the facts. (as mentioned earlier on this thread)

2. If the Fossil wins this one, it will impact us all, on a huge amount of rosters.

Wait and see 4468, wait and see. :E

Dash-7 lover
10th Nov 2004, 18:33

10th Nov 2004, 18:53
Maybe if Ops spent less time sending MAN based crew to BHX, BHX based crews to EDI, and EDI based crews to SOU, whilst SOU based crews are sent to MAN, all at the same time, all in one taxi per person, or a hire care per person; while nightstopping MAN based crews on the IOM (which is where they live!!) then, and only then might we get some coherence to this operation.
There are only three reasons for an airline to fail:

1. Bad management.

2. Bad management.

3. Bad management.

Sorry, there's a fourth. It's Tim de la Fosse!:uhoh:

10th Nov 2004, 19:52
Sorry Pontius, but you are very wrong, very,very wrong, item 4 is more than adequately covered by items 1 - 3..

10th Nov 2004, 21:03

The Spectrum ZX (I started my flying sometime before them!) was the height of technology 20+ years ago, not 10!

Unless you are stuck in a time warp!


"It's just a jump to the left"

"And then a step to the right!"

Dash-7 lover
10th Nov 2004, 21:50
Pontious pilot........

Those poor guys in crew control can only work with the blunt tools they've been given so don't shoot the messenger......and I said SMALL minority not everyone. The majority work bloody hard and without people working days off the whole thing would have ground to a halt a long time ago.....and when inefficient rosters get issued with up to 30 sectors a day uncovered then think of the pressure they're under to keep the programme flying!!

11th Nov 2004, 08:58
4468 – Your ability to make dogmatic statements without checking facts suggests you have a key attribute of senior management. Try applying for the next vacancy.

“Clearly never been a Captain / never worked for BACX/ probably aren’t even a pilot” – WRONG X 3 had a command with BACX for over three years.

When you talk about my “Opinions” you are relating to my factual post a couple of weeks ago.

Tell you what, pick one of those FACTS…tell me why you disagree with it …and I’ll blow you out of the water.

The Skipper concerned is not a friend of mine but she IS a respected colleague. For the record I have never been inclined to post on PPRUNE. I have used my partners ID (who normally posts on the Cabin Crew forum) as I don’t intend posting after this has been resolved (unless the company pulls another ill informed stunt).

DASH 7 LOVER - Your ability to make dogmatic statements without checking facts suggests you have a key attribute of senior management. Try applying for the next vacancy.

Just so people outside MAN are kept in the picture. Your “small minority moaning / delay” post is clearly an attempt to put confusion into this thread (and discredit this Captain) it relates to the MAN – BLQ turn around (sector 2 – 3).

There were three reasons why this flight took 1:10 to get off to BLQ

(1) The No. 1 Cabin Crew which OPERATIONS took off the BLQ flight did not arrive until 15 mins after STD (good idea not to try single crew operations without a no 1).
(2) They were given a slot over an hour after STD (you must get it into your head that the 09:55 to 10:10 slot requested by the skipper was never granted.
(3) There was a queue at the hold (hence airborne a few mins after earliest possible time).

If either of you took an hour of your time to read through the FACTS of this case you would appreciate why this is about to become very messy.

Smoke and mirrors can often work for management but in this kind of situation,if a person has the facts on her side, ultimately, she is flame proof.

Unfortunately for our top man you cannot defend the indefensible. As the learned Yog Sothoth says… “wait and see”

Cpt Chaos
12th Nov 2004, 10:07
Right you lot – or rather those of you from BACX management – get a fcking grip. You have chosen to pick on one of the few ‘voices of reason’ left in your unhappy little company. I don’t work there any more, but did, for years. The Capt that this bedraggled company have decided to try to hang out and dry has spent many hours telling me and others to wind our necks in and get the job done.

The bottom line is, if this Capt was indeed too tired to operate, and lets face it only the Capt concerned knows whether they were or not, then it is their LEGAL duty to stand themselves down. This is what the Capt concerned did, performed their legal duty.

Now Flossie, assuming you get to know what is written here, for once in your life, do the right thing, and bring this matter to a close. Reinstate this Capt immediately and start to try to rebuild your company, that’s your responsibility!

To those of you left at Pizza express I hope the hell you have the balls to back this Capt because you could be next. However already I have heard that the company is winning this battle, with a Manchester Capt recently forcing his crew into discretion, despite all 3 cabin crew telling him they were unfit to operate!

29th Nov 2004, 14:09
This thread's gone awfully quiet. Is there anything to report? is the lady still suspended?

Cruise Alt
29th Nov 2004, 14:52
Has anyone suggested to the lady in question thet she call the CAA. I believe that the FTL section has a pretty good computer model that they can put the duty times into to analyse the fatigue levels. (Heard of this from a colleague who was questioning some sharp rostering at our company).

I would also like to add my support for the captain in question. I used to work for BACX and have never regretted leaving;)

Mr Angry from Purley
29th Nov 2004, 18:04
Cruise Alt
Its called the SAFE programme. Its been developed by Qinetiq (nee Dera). If a remember correctly it gives signs of cumulative fatique, not weekly, and probably cannot take into account disturbed sleep patterns due to having a young family.
In my view also the rules dont help the situ ie; early / late rules.

30th Nov 2004, 08:03
Update - BALPA full time rep,Victim and Management rep had a meeting last week. Despite written requests to replace the vague accusation (that she deliberately delayed the flight) with any substantiated example, the company refused to provide specific evidence to support their claim.

This was again raised at the meeting and,finally, in a response to a "what have I done wrong" question came the reply-
"You did not bring the aircraft back from BLQ is what you have done wrong"!!!

The crux of it seems to be then that if any of us are down route then be warned that you better bring your aircraft back (similar to what our Head of Flight Ops stated on the company website but more severe as it was not made in public).

The company want to move to the disciplinary stage this Friday whilst ignoring the defence requests for written answers to many of the key questions.

30th Nov 2004, 16:21

Who is to sit as judge and jury in the case; is this going to be a fair trial?

Captain Correlli
30th Nov 2004, 18:30
So what is the crime? Are you saying that the Company are no longer arguing over the rights or wrongs of the discretion issue, but have focussed in solely on the "did not bring aircraft home" line?

Where and what is this Company line:

(similar to what our Head of Flight Ops stated on the company website but more severe as it was not made in public).

Cos I haven't seen that one [been too busy trying to vote with my feet, but suffered a minor setback -will just have to tunnel in a different direction].

Surely the Company will HAVE to provide a written accusation of some description to someone - you can't just make it up as go along........

30th Nov 2004, 19:26
The judge and jury will be our Head of Flight Training (has to be a Senior Manager for potentially serious disciplinary cases).

CC - The official (written) line on the "crime" is...Deliberately allowed circumstances to arise which caused the cancelation of BLQ -MAN flight 7896. It has to be as the CAA would jump on what was given verbally as the real reason ie that she did not bring the aircraft back from BLQ

The decision on guilt has already been taken by the company it seems.

Our Head of Flight Ops said on Intercom...."If disrupted, a crew is expected to work with that disruption to keep the operation going. That may mean using discretion and, if so, the company would expect it to be used"

Unfortunately the way things seem to be going at the moment the investigation appears to be ignoring facts and focusing on clearing a path to some form of disciplinary action.

It is looking like they are just going through the motions and doing / saying what they want.

Only after the formal decision / disciplinary action has been dished out by the company can external legal advice be brought to bear (last point is my understanding but may not be totally correct).

1st Dec 2004, 18:47
How is she bearing up? The pressure generated on her by this disgraceful affair must be huge - is there anything we can do to help other than continuing to make supportive posts on here?

Just a thought - has JA been given the judge's job because he is well known to be a bit of a softy? Maybe the Company see their way out as being a compromise when it finally comes down to it.

Finally, where are BALPA in all this - are they pretty confident that it will all end in tears - for TDLF etc?

1st Dec 2004, 19:46
"Deliberately allowed circumstances to arise which caused the cancelation of BLQ -MAN flight 7896."

So, the earlier posters WERE correct.

It's NOT about discretion then?

2nd Dec 2004, 08:11
Part of the reason why this may have dragged on on this that the company is not that well placed.

Take the worse case, an internal disciplinary finds the Captain guilty of deliberately causing the cancellation of the flight. CitiExpress dismiss the Captain.....

The Captain then takes the company to an employment tribunal and cites unfair dismissal. The law is interesting in this area. If a claimant can prove that the company dismissed them for raising concerns over safety then the dismissal is automatically deemed unfair.

In the event that someone is dismissed for raising concerns over safety a Tribunal can award damages, there is no cap or upper limit ie they can be punative.

Plus all ther very bad publicity attached to a public case etc etc.

I imagine the stress of being placed under suspension for all this time has been very stressful and will have had an impact the health of the Captain concerned. Again something that should be addressed by BALPA.

Hope a satisfactory outcome is achieved regards BP

2nd Dec 2004, 10:21
PP - She is bearing up well, but is feeling isolated. If you PM me I will send you her e-mail address as she would really appreciate the support.

The only other thing we can do to help is to explain what you know to your colleagues on the flight deck. There is a lot of misinformation being put around by people from the other side of the fence and that needs to be countered.

Unfortunately many people seem to hold the view that she is guilty until proved innocent. The thinking there seems to be along the lines of ....an excellent company like ours would never try to engineer a situation where flight deck felt their job could be on the line if they did not go into discretion!

The Captian is being advised by BALPA that she must not bring this into the public domain whilst her case is sub judice. This is also BALPAs reason for not issuing any statement about the case.

4468 - Interesting that you did not take up my invitation to dispute any of the facts.

What I said in my last post was that publically the company are saying it is about "deliberately allowing circumstances to arise" because they cannot say anything else. In private though they let the cat out of the bag that it is actually about not bringing the aircraft back ie not going into discretion.

At the risk of repeating myself the facts are clear that she actually did everything correctly and, in seven separate instances, took action to expedite the flights.

The basis of the company position seems to be two statements given by people trying to persuade her to go into discretion over the telephone (unfortunately the tape is not available)

2nd Dec 2004, 14:07
I don't believe this question has been asked so far.
What length of discretion would have been required to bring the aircraft back? minutes or hours?

5th Dec 2004, 09:06
How strange there seems a reluctance to answer your question bean!

5th Dec 2004, 09:46
I've no axe to grind with anyone but part of RMCs' posting on 3rd November in reply to Gwyn reads:-

"4-Regarding your hypothetical slot situation, the pax were all off loaded in BLQ (after she had made up time on the MAN - BLQ sector) with only 10 mins left before she went into discretion."

Does that mean the whole of the return flight would have been in discretion? or that after say a forty minute turnround thirty minutes discretion would be needed to get the aircraft back.

I suspect the latter, but hopefully we may get clarification on this

5th Dec 2004, 10:49

You seem to know all the answers, and keen to set the record straight.

What's the answer?

I have to say, since the term "off loaded" was used, I took this to mean, the passengers returning to MAN!

ie. The turn round had ALREADY been completed.

Perhaps I misunderstood?

And where did the refuelling issue come into it?

5th Dec 2004, 17:44
Let's just look at the fundamentals of this issue, and even (though I find it difficult) let's de-personalise it.

1. The Company is trying to prove that a Captain who refused to go into discretion on grounds of fatigue and flight safety is in the wrong.

2. The facts seem open to interpretation from both sides, depending on what you want to accentuate.

3. The Company in question is well known for breaking agreements, frequently ignoring contracts and breaking signed BALPA 'treaties'.

So, what do you think will be the end result if the Company perceive they have 'won' this one? I suggest their tails will be up, their self confidence in bullying will increase, and the world of BACX will take another dive in all respects. For that reason alone, they cannot be allowed to win. Can you really not imagine what the likes of TDLF, PH, IC, DC, DW, etc will be like with the next set of crew who have an issue with discretion? I'll go further. Can you imagine the pressure on the next Captain who is feeling knacked at the end of another double Nice, or five sectors through a six sector day and really doesn't feel up to it - yet will not dare to say "ENOUGH" because the Company won this one? This is a Flight Safety issue, not to mention a deliberate hounding of one of the most competent and nicest Captains we have in the Company. Also, as has been stated elsewhere, sadly enough, she used to be one of the most pro-Company pilots we had! If they'll do this to one of their PROTAGONISTS - what the heck do you think the rest of us wil get?

It's not straightforward, but to quote that irritating pomposity PH -"We are where we are"

We can roll belly up, or we can support her. Does the question really need to be asked?

Tandemrotor, please tell me what would be happening if this were a mainline Captain? You know as well as I it would have been put away before it was a week old, BA BALPA would never have let it get this far, and you of all people should be ashamed of some of your inferences. Hypocrite!

FO Janeway
5th Dec 2004, 21:29
=========NEWS FLASH=======

This afternoon an aircraft carrying 43 passengers bound for Manchester Airport from Bologna, Italy has crashed on the approach to the runway. We have reason to believe, that there are a few survivors, including the pilot, who is female.

The circumstances leading up to the accident are being investigated by the company and the AAIB.

All evidence seems to suggest, that a chain of errors was not broken by any of the involved parties and led to the loss of life.

The investigators came to the conclusion, that the following points contributed to the accident:
1. Inadequate roster patterns: GLA-BLQ is minutes short of legal FTL's. It does not leave any margin for any kind of delays and unforseen circumstances.
2. The pilot admitted to being "tired" after being up almost all night with her small child...
3. Adding to the fatigue was the pressure she felt put under, due to a new FO on type, bad weather conditions over the alps and being "pro-company", to keep the schedule going despite adverse additions such as operational change of CCrew after the first two sectors and slot delays.

The GMFO is suggesting that the whole sad accident could have been avoided if the pilot would have taken the sensible decision with safety in mind and exercised her discretion to not extend her own and her crew's flying duty.

As she chose not to they are now blaming HER.
The trial will begin next week and it will be one of the first criminal trials televised and broadcast live.

Ghengis Cant
8th Dec 2004, 07:12
Just as an aside............. it is worth making a couple of comments about the management philosophy behind this unpleasant business.

Apart from holding office in Flight operations for companies that consistently have lost large amounts of money and developed apalling morale there is previous history from the recent past where comparisons can be drawn. One of Mr D F's principle characteristics is to shoot first and then ask questions later of those that he wants to get rid of.

As I understand it, this lady would not be considered PC by your man and it is not hard therefor to see why he wants her out.

A previous chairman of Balpa to whom there was a great deal of personal animosity by said gentleman was suspended in dubious circumstances. After months and months of kack handed and mishandled disciplinaries the individual lost his medical due to the pressure and trauma and has never flown since. DF therefor slipped of the hook and never had his conducted tested in a tribunal.

Make no mistake, this unfortunate lady can have no confidence in those who are playing God with her career.........And this is a BA company...............

8th Dec 2004, 08:42
Interesting parallel going on in Mainline at the moment. A skipper was suspended last week because he refused to accept an aircraft that he considered unsafe to fly. The Captain in question has without doubt behaved with unbelievable dignity throughout the whole sorry affair. It is also true to say that 99.9% of the pilots on the fleet back the balanced and difficult choice he had to make. The reason why this is interesting is because the manager in question was ex-regions and seems to have a history of this type of intimidation. I have a feeling that the mainline senior managers are not going to back this character having already issued a statement that they will back any Captain who makes the judgement call that an aircraft is not safe to fly. So if TDF is using this type of approach and is found to be wanting then I don't think he will get much backing from his bosses down at HQ.

Sad times for aviation. It will eventually lead to many people being killed, its as simple as that.

8th Dec 2004, 13:28
Bean - The situation I described was (from the BACX point of view) as fair as it could have been ie

If her departure slot vanished she would have had 10 mins from the last of the MAN - BLQ pax disembarking to getting into the air (otherwise she would have been going into discretion).

She actually had a slot which would,in reality, have put her 57 mins into discretion.

On the day there was a significant headwind and no real opportunity to make up time on the last sector.

whichever way you look at it she would have been going into discretion with links in the accident chain all over the show.

GC your post is interesting as it seems to me the company are dragging this on in the hope that she will resign. It would then be much more difficult for HER to prove constructive dismissal than it would be if the comapny sack her. In this case THEY have to demonstrate robustness of their decision.

If this is the case they have underestimated said lady.

8th Dec 2004, 20:59
Thanks very much for yor very clear post.
A simple answer to a simple question.

Dash-7 lover
8th Dec 2004, 21:34
fo janeway With all due respect...If said pilot was 'tired' should said pilot have not stepped on the plane in the first place......and also should have informed those that have to deal with the pax that said pilot had no intention of returning to MAN from BLQ and not a soul new until arrival at BLQ which then resulted in more flights being cancelled..........another twist. Communcation was the key........

Ghengis Cant
8th Dec 2004, 21:46
JBC...........Was this Airbus fleet perchance?? If so, those in CX would know exactly who the manager concerned is having experienced his MO for a gruesome and unpleasant three years.

He was TDF's right hand man and you can betcha that they still have each other's phone numbers.

They dont come much worse frankly.

9th Dec 2004, 10:45
Dash7Lover - I think you'll find she gave operations every indication that she wouldn't consider going into discretion, giving them considerable opportunity to sort out any problems that could have left the pax stranded in BLQ

FO Janeway
9th Dec 2004, 13:05
Like Bluff said: Ops had enaf notice of her intentions; ie 3hours.
we all know you're management, trying to stir the brown stuff!
please take your time and read the reports. If you could be @rsed, I'm sure "said pilot" (sounds sooo cooool!) will let you read them!

edited for some spelling

Mr Angry from Purley
9th Dec 2004, 15:18

In my previous life (MYT) i was told by many a Pilot that i couldnt ask him/her if he intended using discretion until they got to final departure destination (in this case BLQ) because they didnt need to use discretion until then, and they couldnt decide until then. That was the CAA line alledgedly.
This is a very sorry affair, as a Crewing Bod i find the whole story depressing. I am glad that i work for an Airline that respects its Crews views, i even had one of my bods telling a crew to get off a few months ago, as they didnt want them using 2 hrs discretion on a creeping Mx delay despite the Crew wanting to continue....

Rider of the Purple Sage
9th Dec 2004, 18:33
Hi, like Ghengis, interested in who that individual was.... if he wasn't dear old Ali, then was he perchance from the management structure of what used to be ChippyFryer - and in that case, was he the same management type that failed his first go at an FLC??

Go on, tell us, go on, go on, go on, go on go on - you know you want to!;)

Ghengis Cant
11th Dec 2004, 08:14
I think this point about who the individual is is really important. If it is the individual who we think it may be then this macho, clodd footed and totaly insensitive attitude seems to characterise him and those who rode up to high office with him. Its all about point scoring and putting one over.....................not about professional, considered and decent management.

These guys do the name and reputataion of BA no good at all, so why does Eddington and his main men allow them to get away with it?

Answer. He either does not know about it or does not consider it to be a problem.

Upon the assumption that not everyone who has contributed to this thread is a radical lefty with an agenda of their own then there seems to be plenty of evidence to show that there are some serious fault lines in BA management which warrant serious review.

Picking on a female captain with a young baby who is well liked and respected to prove his management virility may turn out not to be one of Mr De La Fosse's best decisions.

And yes, we know that Management read this forum. Even Mr E acknowledges it.

11th Dec 2004, 11:00
"Picking on a female captain with a young baby"

Why, in this day and age, should her gender be relevant.

Should she expect (or even want?) to be treated differently (better?) than her male colleagues, in a similar situation?

We're all paid the same these days you know!

I wouldn't be too surprised to hear that she would have preferred her gender, and personal circumstances to be kept out of the equation, and certainly out of a public forum. Who was it that introduced this information? (Tinytim?)

The inferrence MAY be taken that she was too tired to be reporting for a 4 sector day. Period. If she was able to tell crew control only HALFWAY through that day, that she would not be fit to exercise ANY discretion later, perhaps she was pushing the safety margins to begin with!

That's where I find this story to be a little unusual.

And if RE is familiar with what goes on, I think he would be dissappointed if his managers did NOT look into these circumstances.

As an aside, in the present economic situation, I would have thought that a thread entitled "Trouble brewing at BACX" probably WOULD attract Rod's attention. But it may not be just management that suffer from this dirty washing!

Ghengis Cant
11th Dec 2004, 12:12
Of course she should not be treated any different. She is however a woman with a young baby and by definition considerations apply to her which would not to a male colleague.....Properly so.

In this age of political correctness it is a manager with a dubious future I suggest who adds naievety to any other shortcomings.

One can just see the headlines....................

11th Dec 2004, 12:33
"Of course she should not be treated any different. She is however a woman with a young baby and by definition considerations apply to her which would not to a male colleague.....Properly so."

Ah yes, the hypocrisy of political correctness.

11th Dec 2004, 16:28
4468, I can only imagine you are a robot! For heavens sake, we all know that females do the same job as us, in some cases to a higher standard! However, does that mean you don't treat them with a bit of courtesy? Or that generally the level of risque joke is toned down, or even that you hold doors open for them, or just show a soupcon of politesse? Personally I much prefer to fly with a female FO, quite apart from the fact that most of them DO try harder because of the atmosphere engendered by the likes of yourself, and partly because every one I have ever known has striven to be a consummate professional!

Your comments show a total lack of sensitivity. One of the great benefits of gender differences is that one IS able to behave like a gentleman, to show a bit of deference to a girl, to basically abide by the rules that have governed civilised society for the last x hundred years. I do not suggest that to be a licence for abuse, but I'd be interested to know what your wife or girlfriend thinks of the incident and your comments. Pray, do ask her, and enlighten us all.
In the meantime, does anyone have a timescale for this to come to an end?

(Blows Capt. MB a big kiss, and wishes her all the luck in the world!)

12th Dec 2004, 00:44
So Cornflake

You are saying that you treat a male colleague with LESS courtesy? Don't you hold doors open for MALE colleagues? Don't you treat THEM with a "soupcon of politesse?" Don't your MALE colleagues strive to be consummate professionals?

It's a tricky one isn't it.

Are we equal, or are some more equal than others?

My question was: Why is this pilot's gender relevant?

In other words, would a male pilot be in more difficulties here, than this female?

I didn't introduce this information, but some seem to be using gender as a justification!

What's the answer?

12th Dec 2004, 10:59
I am not sure how the small child fits into this scenario?

If a pilot (any pilot) is fatigued for whatever reason then it is incumbent upon that pilot NOT TO REPORT to fly; may not be popular with management/rostering but necessary.

All (or most) of us have had a small child in our lives (some several) at some time during our flying careers and yes! sometimes they yell and cry all night because they are unwell or whatever, but hopefully we work around it. We (that is the sexist men) pull on the earmuffs and the little lady (wife) takes care of the child child's needs.

My question is why was said pilot up all night with a young child when she knew that she had heavy flying schedule the next day? Having been up all night why did she not call rostering and inform them that she was unfit to fly due to fatigue?

Whatever the reasons(s) for the above this situation should never had happened in the first place AND when the Captain concerned realised it was begining to get out of hand quite correctly that Captain informed the company that she would not exercise Captain's discretion and that is HER prerogative.

The danger here is that the company may decide that this employee is a liablity and use it's prerogative to let that employee go. However not on the pretext of that employee not excercising her discretion but because a company cannot run a business profitably if aircraft end up at the wrong airport and the pax are pixxed off!

16th Dec 2004, 07:46
This has not gone away.
The management of this company might think and hope so, but it's still brewing.

Still thinking of you Captain M!!


17th Dec 2004, 07:51
Dear I-Ford,
You hit the nail dead on the head!!!!!!!!!!!



22nd Dec 2004, 19:24
Three months after suspension BACX announce "There is no case to answer"

They suggest this Captain just puts it all behind her and comes back to work.

She has made no concessions to them and her integrity has been proven.

The Company however probably feel that they have fired a nice shot across the bows and that we all now understand that discretion "is expected"

DEAD WRONG! Safety will remain our prime concern...we will not be intimidated.

Ghengis Cant
22nd Dec 2004, 19:36
Assuming this to be true,then I am so glad for the lady concerned. One can only imagine the hell she has been through.

So far as Mr De La Fosse is concerned he should show his integrity by resigning.

This is a disgusting episode which has devalued the reputation of BA.

It would be gratifying to think that some of what has been said on this thread and the widespread attention paid as a result might have contributed to this shame faced and long overdue climb down.

22nd Dec 2004, 19:59
Integrity? Credibility? Laws of the universe suggest they cannot co-exist in the presence of this, by now, discredited manager.

Captain B should finish him off with a civil action.

22nd Dec 2004, 21:16
I Ford you hit the nail on the head!!

Please forgive me repeating myself.

"What was a pilot doing up all night with a yound child (presumably poorly - and we have all been there!) knowing that he (or she in this case) had a long days flying ahead with a duty day that she knew would take her to the fullest extent of her duty day, if everything went to plan.

If she was truly "up all night" then she should have called in and told rostering she was not fit to report for duty.

What I suspect happened was that in fact she went to work, perhaps already a little tired after a long night up with a young child not because she wanted to but because she knew the shxt would hit the fan if she did not! That is where the poor management began!

I think as an observer that both the pilot concerned and the company have a part of the blame each. However at the end of the day the pilot was totally correct to refuse to go into discretion because SHE did not feel safe doing so and that is HER right so to do.

I think she acted foolishly, out of misplace loyalty, by going to work after a night up with a young child BUT acted very sensibly by refusing to go into discretion.

By contrast the company had made itself many enemies and made itself look very stupid and poor at management; nothing new there!!

I hope the lady concerned has a Merry Christmas and is able to put this sorry sago behind her in the New Year.


23rd Dec 2004, 19:16
Congratulations to Captain MB, and I really hope you now sue the a**e off the many incompetent management that have made you suffer much trauma these last few months. Not to mention all the lost resources at the countless meetings.
Also a lesson to be learned by Ops - the Captain makes the decisions, not some spotty youth Ops Assistant who probably has never been in an aircraft and has not the first understanding of the legal responsibilities of a Captain, let alone FTL. As for the many other inaccurate and accusative comments on this forum from an individual in Nav Services (you will know who you are) - the same applies.

Enough said!!