View Full Version : Challenge-can anyone provide a worse roster?

11th Feb 2005, 12:39
Interested to see if this is the worst roster over a 31 period in the world. Do your best!!
PS this is domestic flying in Asia.

4 day trip (every day early start, average 5hrs flight time/day)
1 day off
4 day trip (early as above)
1 day off
4 day trip (early " )
1 day off
4 day trip (early " )
2 days off (harassed 4 times by fltops to try to get me to fly on days off)
5 day trip (early " )
1 day off
4 day trip (late " , yehah)

Few days off at the end of all that.

11th Feb 2005, 12:59
You need a union - oops, Asia - could be a bit tricky:*

Mobster lover
11th Feb 2005, 13:20
Well according to CAP371, you shouldn't be able to do that roster. You have to have at least 2 consecutive days off in 14.

Pretty crappy roster I have to say though. I thought ours were appalling...

11th Feb 2005, 13:56
Remind me not to bitch about my schedule next time...

gear down props forward
11th Feb 2005, 15:55
on my 4 night-a-week route, i fly (well...it has been averaging...) 8.5 hours a night, 3 nights a week and get a "short" night of 4.5 hours flying once a week. these are all "late" starts of 8pm local. arrive back home at 8am and it's away from the airport for 12 hours to do it all over again the next night.

flying is conducted in a lear 35 under FAA 135. using the company's flight time estimates for this route, i will have logged 1350 hours at the end of 12 months -- the limit is 1400 in that time frame.

at least you're getting a day off! i used to have 5 or 6 nights on followed by 1 or 2 days off and that was rough. it sounds like your company needs to hire more pilots.

Maude Charlee
11th Feb 2005, 18:45
Almost anyone who has ever been a dispatcher would give their right arms for a roster with so much stability and consistency, let alone so much notice. Most rosters are a bizarre mixture of split days off, constant changes mid-roster from earlies/lates/nights to any combination of the same and all for the privelidge of the minimum wage.

Guess it all depends on your perspective as to what makes a 'bad' roster.

11th Feb 2005, 19:16
You should see my roster......and I'm not bloody flying yet! :p

11th Feb 2005, 23:15

3 day-trips
4 days off

repeat next week


Only bragging 'cause I know it won't last...!

Have to admit, that of the original poster WAS about the worst I have ever seen, AND I HAVE WORKED FOR GREAT LAKES!

11th Feb 2005, 23:38
On the A330 fleet in MAS you can get worse roster than that.And this is the US5 million dollar software program ICMS(inteligent crew management system).

And now it's fondly known as I C A Mess

Kaptin M
13th Feb 2005, 04:31
m_d, what was your report time, and finish time on the 4 day patterns?
Not everyone flies to CAP371 Regs, Mobster l.

In this country (Japan), the rest requirements are predicated on required rest AFTER duty - also deadheading is not counted as duty time...they must think we do it for fun :mad: , so theoretically it's possible to deadhead pre/post flight for indeterminate, unregulated periods. :bored:

13th Feb 2005, 07:44
Interested to see if this is the worst roster over a 31 period in the world.

Hmm...well, 5 days groundschool (6hr day), 1 day flying, 1 day off. For the next 6 months! ;)

At least you can relax and watch it do it by itself through out the period between gear up and gear down! :p

cargo boy
13th Feb 2005, 07:57
For those of you waffling on about your rosters just pack it all in and come over here to the UK where you have halfway decent legislation to protect you from dangerous rostering practices. Loads of jobs going here at the moment with the majors hiring and the inevitable capillary soak-up from the ranks of the 'easily manipulated' wannabes.

Here's a link to the CAA publication of our flight time limitation rules(CAP371) (http://www.caa.co.uk/docs/33/CAP371.PDF). Just download it (it's free), digest it and start putting pressure on your countries aviation regulators to put something similar in place. I know some of you will complain about corrupt officials and the 'little man' syndrome but instead of whingeing about it on here why don't you actually do something about it. If you're not in a union then don't even bother wasting your time. Without the backing of a large group of you, you might as well be peeing in the wind.

Oh, and by the way, our European politicos have already decided to ignore scientific research into aviation related fatigue and opted for their 'pig trough suppliers' suggestions to amending EU wide FTL's. Never forget that the airlines have their own lobby's and they are far better organised than the unions. Ever wonder how many brown envelopes get passed around Brussels?

13th Feb 2005, 11:39
bear in mind that whenever you think that you have the worst conditions imaginable out there in civvy world there are still fools like myself flying for the military. we essentially do the same flying as you guys but on a lot less money. i dream of the time when i know exactly what my schedule will be for the upcoming month, and to know that i would have a whole day off and not just 11 1/2 hrs off between 16 hr sectors.

13th Feb 2005, 11:47
Yeah that looks pretty crappy to me, mine is worse but i enjoy flying so i don't care.

speed freek
13th Feb 2005, 14:26
I think mine might be a tad worse...

Sunday - unemployed
Monday - unemployed
Tuesday - unemployed
Wednesday - unemployed
Thursday - unemployed
Friday - unemployed

and for a change...

Saturday - unemployed

Tell you what mate, do you wanna swap? Since it sounds like you need a break!

Not trying to start an argument, blah blah whatever. Just saying be grateful for what you have.....

13th Feb 2005, 14:50
Umm, Asia....well you make your bed &c.
Well we knew what we were getting into when we started.
December. 110 hours plus 18 hours deadheading plus 12 consecutive days off.
So in 19 days, with only one day off during duty period...
london-seoul-bombay-milan-seoul-london-seoul-london-seoul-london...days off at home for Xmas...london-seoul-london.
Felt a bit weary afterwards. But it could have been worse, no USA trips in that schedule.
This is not a whinge, just a comment.
Micro naps are not an apocraphyl tale, they happen, so beware.

13th Feb 2005, 15:32
Even though this thread is about civilian flying (and my sympathies are truly with you, m_d, that is a very rotten roster)....Juliet brings up a good point about military flying. Monthly rosters? Non-existent, except that you can plan on not being able to plan anything! ;) I'm serious, though -- your "planned" flying roster changes on a daily basis, so there's no telling which days you'll actually be working, or when you'll be off next.

Flying hours and duty period/rest limits? Yes, they exist somewhat, but in times of conflict, some of those can be (and are routinely) waived.

I hope you'll forgive my side-track here, but memories such as these help me to appreciate my current situation, no matter how annoyed I get with my roster. When I feel the temptation to complain, I look back on how things once were.

In a not-so-long-ago conflict, during a pilot/crew shortage in our deployed location, we worked the following:

-- A 20-hour workday (which included a 15-16 hour flight, sometimes extended to 17 hours)
-- 16 hours off
-- start the 20-hour duty day/15-16 hour flight again.

The 16 hours off meant that you were alternating between an early morning flight to an evening flight each time. We hung in there, but I can honestly say that after several consectutive flights like this, I had never been so completely tired in my life.

Additional crews eventually arrived and we were given a reprieve. It must have helped me to know that I could finally relax, because I went back to my quarters and slept for 15 hours straight.

I'm not complaining about the military -- I'm very glad to have served, and I wouldn't trade the flying/experiences for anything. But memories, such as the above, help to keep my airline roster, lifestyle, etc. in perspective :ok:

Edited to add my best wishes to m_d for a better situation in the future. Perhaps there's little you can do, but it might be worth taking cargo boy's suggestion regarding putting pressure on your countries' officials. Maybe if enough of you work together on it?? Or is that just wishful thinking in your situation?

14th Feb 2005, 03:27
Well Murdoch-Disliker, I reckon your roster totalled 31 days with 4 days off, so the reference to a 'few days off' after is pretty meaningless when it comes to the month you just flew.

Last time I saw a roster like that was with National (yellow DC10's where the FEO's used to deadhead MIA/LHR then transit operate back).

So I have to ask you, why do you do it. Do you think it is unsafe ? Which government sanctions this as it would probably fail FAA, CAA, JAROPS, JAA etc. Let us know so we can avoid the airline. Ta

blue up
14th Feb 2005, 14:28
Early morning Spain
Early morning Spain
Early mor......car crash
Early morning wake up in hopsital

6 months off, waiting for surgery

Pair of 4.5 inck metal K-wires in wrist, short and feeble muscles, no feeling in hand and deep scar across palm. No more Class1 medical cert.

Early retirement at 36 years old.

Anyone want to buy a pair of used Raybans and a set of 757 manuals? I need the money

blue up
14th Feb 2005, 20:04
We had a situation where I work where they had a roster of 5 starts before sunrise, consisting of 2 pre-0600 reports (early starts) followed by an 0605(not a legal early, just a morning start) followed by a pair of earlies.
(forgive me for errors of legal/tech jargon, I've been off for a while!)
Technically legal due to it not being 3 earlies in a row. Did they seriously think that the extra 5 minutes lie-in would make it easy to do another 2 earlies.
Plan didn't last for very long. Thankfully the local Pilot Manager saw the roster and got it sorted.

Good company to work for....just that the roster planning was starting to look at legal maximums more as "targets"!

14th Feb 2005, 20:59
Yeah, well... Juliet may or may not enjoy better quality time off as has been suggested, but how many of you have got to put up with being shot at and had missiles launched at them in the meantime.
When the Boss says fly, you don't quote CAR's at him....do you.??

14th Feb 2005, 21:49
Try working 5 nights from 10PM to 8AM nursing the reservation system for a particular airline.

Calls through the night from Flight Crew Briefing, garbled telexes from a certain airline in Jamaca. Fixing passenger records together, because sometimes the system screws up.

We do not always sleep my dear friend. Others stay up all night, working to ensure that you have a day off on your crew roster, and that Nigel has enough fuel.

Sadly as sometimes you are, the forgotten part of an airline.

Big Pistons Forever
15th Feb 2005, 01:45
As a Canadian firebombing pilot during the middle of the 2003 BC
fire season

41 days on red alert ( 5 min from dispatch to wheels roll)
with no days off, including flying 182 hrs in 291 flights. One 3 day period included 24.7 flight hrs and 41 flights. This was legal as Transport Canada waived the 3 days off in 30 and 6 days off in 60 duty limit ( with a 8 flight hr and 12 hr duty day limit after day 30). The problem was not enough pilots and a fire season that would not slow down. We finally got 5 days off on day 42 but it didn't matter as I was going to ground myself any way.
:zzz: The good news is firebombing pilots get the whole winter off:ok:

15th Feb 2005, 07:44
Worked for an exec op in the med and was on call 24/7 with usually 1 hours notice to be at the aircraft. No leave, no days off, no life. Needless to say I'm not there any more!

Kaptin M
15th Feb 2005, 08:00
That's great guys, but you and I both know that being on "call/red alert" doesn't preclude you from sleeping when you want to sleep, does it?!
Sure it limits the radius that you can travel from your home - but it doesn't tie you down completely.

Being locked into a tin capsule, travelling at several hundred miles per hour, several (tens of) thousands of feet...or several miles up, if you prefer......where the O2 level is less than down at S.L., sort of DEMANDS one's attention - if only to monitor that nothing goes wrong..goes wrong...goes wrong.

Lying in bed/dozing at a desk waiting for the 'phone to ring can cause one to snap precariously into reality - but fortunately reality will WAIT for you to adjust to IT, even if you do get a kick in the butt for being a bit slow.
Pilots at work do NOT have that luxury!

15th Feb 2005, 09:31
Well, murdoch_d, the roster does seem rather ah...full, but OTOH, when you applied to the company, you did ask for work, did you not?

Kaptin M
15th Feb 2005, 09:42
Well to be precise, 411A, he would have applied for employment with the company, subject to the terms and conditions of the contract of employment, and the prevailing laws of the land.

Some pilots may choose to prostitute themselves - by flying unairworthy aircraft, eg. aircraft that other pilots refuse to fly due to known, serious defects..such as engines that are incapable of producing a KNOWN amount of thrust on take-off - whilst others follow the limits placed on them by their employer and/or the regulating authority.

Pilots who KNOWINGLY and WILFULLY bust regs - be they company or state - deserve NO sympathy, in my opinion.
They're a danger to themselves, AND the pax and aircraft that have been entrusted to their care - and not least of all, to their EMPLOYER. :O

15th Feb 2005, 10:38
thanks speed freek:

It is always greener on other side.....but we do forget our friends who made a heavy landing and not yet back in the air. Good Luck. Bumz.

15th Feb 2005, 10:47
Royal Air Moroc 1989: 12 hours on, 7 hours off. Repeat for 6 days then 1 day off. The 12 hours started from brakes release until engines shutdown. The rest period was all time that was not duty. Typical flight into Africa needed 15 minutes minimum to secure the aircraft followed by 45 minute transport to hotel. Next morning, 15 minutes to get out of bed, into uniform and depart hotel for another 45 minute trip to airport. Arrive at aircraft 45 minutes before engine start for another 12 hour duty. Bed rest therefore maximum 4 hours. Locals considered this to be OK.

15th Feb 2005, 10:56
"but we do forget our friends who made a heavy landing"

Very true, but what you are all forgetting is the guys who make sure your Ac are fit to fly.... Whilst it varies from company to company I know I have worked the following as an Engineer:

Jul - Sep: 0600 - 2300 7 days a week (excludes breakfast and washing so you can add 1 hr to that)

10 days break at end of sept.

Oct - Jan: 0630 - 2300 7 days a week (again excludes breakfast and washing so you can add 1 hr to that) *

*I had New years day off

Whilst I wholeheartedly accept driving the thing is a far more intense workload please understand why we Engineers don´t immediately break out in applause;) .

PS: Not trying to run down what a lot of you guys do, just trying to highlight there are other safety critical areas yet to receive the same attention to fatigue and it effects....

15th Feb 2005, 12:38
1 SEAsia-BKK
2-3 Bkk-Fra (All night)
4-5 Fra-Bkk (then pos to Base)
6 Off
7-8 SEAsia-Bne-Akl (All night)
9 Akl-Bne
10 Off
11 Bne-SEAsia

12 Hour time zone in 7 days.

1-2 SEAsia-Bkk-Shj-Fra (18+hours in A/C)
3 Off
4-5 Fra-Bkk (Pos Base)(17hours in A/C)

1 SEAsia-BKK
2-3 Bkk-Fra (night)
4-5 Fra-Bkk (then pos to Base)
6 Off
7 Off
8 do it again, and again, and again.

1-2 SEAsia-Bne-Akl (All night)
3 Akl-Bne-SEAsia
75% of flights went into discretion. Nothing changed for 6 months until new schedule came out. Where was DCA when you needed them.

Jet lag, never heard of it.
Fatigue, thats just a myth pilots give who dont want to work.

How could you not love this job

15th Feb 2005, 12:50
My favourite one was a few years back at ITN. I had my roster changed 4 times for the same day. No great problem as it involved slightly different start times. It then turned out they were calling me in to do 4 different jobs at the same time! OK an admin cock up but it was the same admin guy each time!
Later he tried to call one guy in to cover his own leave! Yep X was on leave and he called the same X in to provide cover. They sacked him in the end but took several years.

16th Feb 2005, 16:50
There will never be a FTL scheme that covers all eventualities, but a fair scheme is all that we flyers want... and not to be shafted by untrained rostering staff who don't have a clue about working into/through circadien lows; unreasonable 18-30 hour rest periods between trips (minimum rest would be a God send); blah, blah, blah.

For all you new guys/gals looking for jobs with a major carrier; especially in foreign parts... speak to other employees... do look at the FTL scheme before you jump and say "yes" to the job of your dreams.

I love flying; regrettably the good years have gone.

Keep on your toes. It's your licence... don't lose it!

Che Xindamail
17th Feb 2005, 07:55
Why does this thread remind me of Monty Python? Living in a shoebox in the middle of a highway...

Surely there must be someone out there whose contract says he must hit mimself over the head with a hammer before take-off...

Don't be shy!