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HeryBird
8th Jun 2006, 12:54
Hi all

Just heard on the radio.

The Civil Aviation Authority has been investigating an allegation that maintenance checks on planes at Glasgow Airport were falsified.

A newspaper claimed that a British Airways engineering official arranged for an unqualified electrician to sign off work while he took a holiday.

Hmmmmmmmmmmm!!!

On speed on profile
8th Jun 2006, 13:02
Could be an interesting one this.... I was about to rubbish this thread as fishing from a journo because its such a rediculous claim but..... its on the BBC website. I seriously hope the paper claiming the indescretions is wrong.

OSOP

Runway 31
8th Jun 2006, 15:16
From what is being said on local radio the claims are not false. An engineer has resigned and another person has been disciplined. It's


Everything is all right though as BA states that safety was not compromised as all work is double checked !!!

greatwhitehunter
10th Jun 2006, 11:04
The chap responsible said that 'everyone was doing it' I think that's a reflection of his personal low standards rather than reality within the rest of BA.
According to the article he has been forced to retire and has found re-employment with Logan Air, which is one of BA's partners!
The question that puzzles me is why in view of the seriousness of the allegations (which he appears to have admitted to) his licence has not been suspended. If proved guilty his licence should be revoked.

Rigga
10th Jun 2006, 15:07
The question that puzzles me is why in view of the seriousness of the allegations (which he appears to have admitted to) his licence has not been suspended. If proved guilty his licence should be revoked.

I believe he shouldn't have his licence revoked, because he did not do anything wrong from his Licence's POV. The other guy did the erroneous deed. From what I read - a company procedures indescretion is what may have happened. It seems to me this BA guy could have been replaced by someone posing as an Electrician when not being qualified. A bit like flying a CAT plane without an ATPL (if you get my drift)
I assume BA knows who it is contracting to these days, so there may be some room for blame in the HR or Quality Depts for not spotting false docs.

Sacked - Maybe.
But Losing his Licence - No! He did not endanger the aircraft his co-accused/accomplice did.

Krystal n chips
10th Jun 2006, 16:52
Could be an interesting one this.... I was about to rubbish this thread as fishing from a journo because its such a rediculous claim but..... its on the BBC website. I seriously hope the paper claiming the indescretions is wrong.

OSOP

Sorry to er, disillusion you, but you clearly do not know the nature of the beast. This one came to light---that's the only difference. ;)

greatwhitehunter
11th Jun 2006, 11:11
Rigga,

I don't see your point, you seem to be saying that if I give someone a knife and incite them to stab someone else that will I have no responsibility for the result.
The point is he gave his stamp to some-one else to use in his absence. He put the other person in a position to commit the offence, also he was in a position to apply pressure to the individual to use the stamp. Aircraft were being despatched with no licenced oversight of the work carried out on them and so with invalid C of A's. It really doesn't matter if the other man used the stamp or not - the licenced mans attitude is not one commensurate with someone in control of aircraft safety. He should be out of the industry and not simply employed elsewhere as he has been.

Krystal n chips
11th Jun 2006, 11:45
Rigga,
I don't see your point, you seem to be saying that if I give someone a knife and incite them to stab someone else that will I have no responsibility for the result.
The point is he gave his stamp to some-one else to use in his absence. He put the other person in a position to commit the offence, also he was in a position to apply pressure to the individual to use the stamp. Aircraft were being despatched with no licenced oversight of the work carried out on them and so with invalid C of A's. It really doesn't matter if the other man used the stamp or not - the licenced mans attitude is not one commensurate with someone in control of aircraft safety. He should be out of the industry and not simply employed elsewhere as he has been.

I could be wrong here, but I am sure I heard about an OSE who did the same---and duly went on to higher things !--with the culture that's prevalent----and has been for some time sadly, the glory days went along with the family silver of course---the "image" presented to the world is far from the reality. As I said, this one came to light...........

greatwhitehunter
11th Jun 2006, 12:49
Krystal,
I agree with you I think we all know of such goings on. If the CAA did their job there would be less of it. I have only seen two surveyors in my long career - hardly enough to worry those who put career progression before safety and legality!

PAXboy
11th Jun 2006, 15:03
greatwhitehunterThe point is he gave his stamp to some-one else to use in his absence.
An ousider speaking: If he was prepared to do this (above quote) then I would work on the premise that any work he did must be suspect. If he is prepared for others to cheat in this way then, when he WAS in charge, his own standards must be low and he would sign off on anything without checking.

Krystal n chips
11th Jun 2006, 17:08
greatwhitehunter
An ousider speaking: If he was prepared to do this (above quote) then I would work on the premise that any work he did must be suspect. If he is prepared for others to cheat in this way then, when he WAS in charge, his own standards must be low and he would sign off on anything without checking.

You can get into a minefield with this point Paxboy. Lets say there is black and white---and forty shades of grey in between both---and then there is say--"expediency"--ok ?. Most of us who are / were in the maintenance world have used a pen in preference to a spanner at some point--those who deny this have probably never left an office in their life btw--however----in the case of a certain organisation as mentioned here, the issue that grates is the pious hypocrisy and the fact they have a fairly well documented track record in recent years which no amount of spin can negate. That said, I am curious as to how and why this one actually ended up in the CAA's in-tray----and I would certainly like to know more about the facts of the matter. Just out of interest shall we say.

The Footsoldier
11th Jun 2006, 17:39
The facts of the matter are gentlemen, in days gone by, all the managers stamping ability was removed due to this sort of thing and for this type of reason, i.e. managers certifying aircraft and stamping of work without actually leaving their desks. This is illegal and totally undermines the system and safety of aircraft, i.e if you put your car into a garage for a service you expect it to be done. In recent years particularly at glasgow maintenance base, managers have been quietly given their stamping ability back, you must understand that a manager with a stamp has a conflict of interest, i.e. he must perform or be seen to perform to obtain their targets to get their bonuses, one way to do this is to stamp the task cards without actually doing the work, or ensuring that it has been done in accordance with. their is a problem with with blind stamping at glasgow and this is mainly due to these managers with stamps, the newspaper reports are very accurate although the main culprate has got off lightly, and this is the unqualified prat who actually carried out the happy stamping. the main basis of holding authorisations is that you know exactly what you are allowed to stamp for and what you are not this prat knew exactly what he was doing and knew exactly that he shouldn't have done this, this happy stamping was also carried out over a long period and affected at least nine aircraft that they know off.

what the caa have got to understand is the CULTURE that has been created and this is the dangerous word CULTURE, because then people think it is the norm, the simple example is that someone happy stamps a back up system as being serviceable when it is not and the main system fails in flight, then the real problems begin. most licenced engineers consider themselves as professionals which they are, but until the caa insist on stamps being removed from people who have a conflict of interest within an organisation then this culture will continue.

Bad Airways have had a few highlighted lucky escapes in the last couple of years down to this sort of happy/blind stamping, it just goes to show that they haven't learned anything.

Swedish Steve
12th Jun 2006, 19:06
I could be wrong here, but I am sure I heard about an OSE who did the same---and duly went on to higher things !--....
Yes and he is still in Management at LHR.

Rigga
13th Jun 2006, 12:57
Unfortunately, EASA Pt 66 will ensure that all degree educated Base Manintenance Managers will soon be entitled to a C Licence with which to release aircraft from Base Maintenance. This will also ensure a large conflict of interest for aircraft being rolled out late.
It's not the best way in the world - but thats what commerce (Oh, and EASA)wants!

Jet II
13th Jun 2006, 13:22
This is the latest in a long line of maintenence foul-ups at BA.

You have to wonder why the present Engineering management are still in place. Perhaps some outside 'expertise' is needed to shake things up?

groundbum
13th Jun 2006, 13:40
I wonder why (if the story is true) the engineer felt the need to organise for somebody else do his work whilst on holiday? Surely if he has holiday booked then he's free and clear, and its the managers problem to organise cover and so forth?

S

The Footsoldier
13th Jun 2006, 14:50
u hit the nail right on the head groundbum, Why indeed !!! possibly the senior managers reputation for bullying his managers has got something to do about it by putting pressure on his underlings to get aircraft out on time. but the real reason is that the unqualified prat didn't have the sense to realise that the manager who had previously given him his stamp to abuse many months previously had gone on leave, as and here is the funny part these two individuals didnt even work on the same shift pattern, so they were bound to be rumbled at some point, the rumour is that several other managers already knew what was going on. i mean the manager in charge of the aircraft checks for example he knew that that he had no avionics cover during these checks but yet all the avionic tasks were being certified, must have been the licence fairies. but of course no doubt they are all acting dumb for the board of inquiry, which wouldn't be hard

The Footsoldier
13th Jun 2006, 14:51
p.s. the story is 100 per cent true, in just about every detail

Perrin
13th Jun 2006, 17:06
I agree with krystal & chips every eng out there that has been in the front line for years knows the pen will override the spanner after a good think of all the things that could or could not happen but to give one his lic to use is really not very smart at all, I have heard it goes on in the fore named big brother airline which the CAA has for years told us to look to for standards. There are only room for two feet on the mat in front of the CAA when something goes wrong the guy with the number be it pilot or engineer. I hope that this is a wakeup call to all those who are sailing little to close to the wind and lets just say no to any risk taking.

Frangible
13th Jun 2006, 19:31
I've edited the following extract from Sunday Times article on January 1, 2006, published after the AAIB slammed BA mx over "systemic" failings.
It seems that no matter how hard they get "slammed" it keeps happening.
The Sunday Times January 01, 2006
Watchdog slams BA's air safety
By the Insight team
BRITISH AIRWAYS jets have suffered mid-air failures because of “systemic” problems with their maintenance, air accident investigators have revealed.
After inquiries into four mid-air incidents, the investigators say that there are safety problems that may be “widespread within the organisation”. They warn that it appears that shoddy working practices are accepted as the norm by some maintenance staff.
According to aviation analysts, the criticism from the government's Air Accident Investigation Branch (AAIB) is unprecedented for an airline that has won a reputation for being one of the best maintained fleets in the world.
...
The AAIB's concerns about the failures in BA's maintenance regime over the past three years are highlighted in a report on the Boeing 757 which took off in September 2003 without two wing panels.
...
They say the failure to check that the wing panels were installed on the Paris flight “seems not to have been an isolated case, but more symptomatic of the existing culture”.
They add: “Ineffective supervision of maintenance staff had allowed working practices to develop that had compromised the level of airworthiness control and had become accepted as the 'norm'. Maintenance errors were not the result of wilful negligence, or any desire to perform a less than satisfactory job, but the result of a combination of systemic issues that had increased the probability of an error being committed.”
...
BA employs 6,000 engineers, compared with 9,500 in 1995 but its fleet remains at a similar size as 10 years ago.
BA said it took the AAIB's latest report “very seriously”. Captain Rod Young, head of safety at BA, said: “The airline accepts the AAIB's recommendations, which identified factors in the maintenance process which led to this incident (in September 2003). These factors were immediately rectified by February 2004 following the airline's own investigation which was carried out in parallel with the AAIB's investigation.
Nuff said.

Joetom
13th Jun 2006, 22:12
Interesting reading.
.
Sounds like many engineers at BA were aware that this was going on, shame they not aware of an MOR form they can fill in and give to the CAA, if only one engineer leaves BA after this one case comes to life, the question must be, how many other engineers inside BA use the same system and feel it will OK as when they they get found out, it will be Ok.
.
Think BA will have to accept that aircraft going through maint checks with no maint cover avail, but aircraft come out on time, might be a problem if the CAA find that out, guess the AAIB will be busy in the future.
.
Am sure that the aircraft that were maintained when engineer on holiday were removed from service and checks were actioned again, just like the pro-active maint checks that were actioned on the BA320 that lost all elec power during flt last year.(or did the AAIB have to order the checks, I forget).
Looks like the wake up call has tried a few times, I wonder what the alarm will look like.???

PAXboy
13th Jun 2006, 22:21
Here follows a pessimistic post ...

Well, this all presents an interesting buisiness opportunity to anyone willing to take the stance: We REALLY do our maintenance properly and that's why are fares are a bit more expensive. Come and inspect our workshops that are not outsourced etc. Inspect the certificates on-line etc.

Not a chance, short term cash for the board and shareholders wins every time. In any organisation, once this kind of malaise sets it, it is very difficult to get it out. The longer you leave it the worse it is and the more expensive to fix it. The usual cure for this malaise is dead bodies. For example, London Underground King's Cross fire, which was due to poor maintenance [cleaning] that had been pointed out.

It would seem that getting any doubts about an a/c should be made and filed off the a/c before take off. The flight and data recorders might not capture all the relevant information.

jondc9
13th Jun 2006, 22:48
we call this sort of thing: PENCIL WHIPPING in the USA.

Eastern Airlines (rip) had a problem with pencil whipping during the really bad days after most of the Real eastern people had left.

Does this stuff really happen? I have seen it done at much smaller outfits.

I wrote something up in a logbook (mx log) and came back the next day to find that page had been removed from the log book!

When I asked about it, I found out the answer and resigned.

jon

gas path
13th Jun 2006, 23:03
..............but to give one his lic to use is really not very smart at all that's an understatement, more like damn well criminal. I think the CAA should persue this individual, and his new employer should think again about his employment IMO. I wouldn't trust this person to push a broom!. It really pi$$es me off, being dragged down with these muppets :*:ugh:
All credit to who ever 'blew the whistle' although I do wonder if they could now be a management 'target'! that says a lot for our management:(
joetom
Am sure that the aircraft that were maintained when engineer on holiday were removed from service and checks were actioned again In short, Yes! they would have been.

PondLifeMan
14th Jun 2006, 00:11
Krystal,

The person you have in mind was a Maintenance Manager. He was never an OSE. He came to FCO via the hangars.

And, My goodness doesnt this just run and run... try here (http://www.pprune.org/forums/showthread.php?t=71919&highlight=Maintenance) from 2002 or this (http://www.pprune.org/forums/showthread.php?t=202377) from late last year.

Best of luck to you all

PLM

Krystal n chips
14th Jun 2006, 05:54
Krystal,
The person you have in mind was a Maintenance Manager. He was never an OSE. He came to FCO via the hangars.
And, My goodness doesnt this just run and run... try here (http://www.pprune.org/forums/showthread.php?t=71919&highlight=Maintenance) from 2002 or this (http://www.pprune.org/forums/showthread.php?t=202377) from late last year.
Best of luck to you all
PLM

PLM, my apologies---never met said person, but the "strong rumour" concerned CDG hence the OSE connection. I have a lot of time for the OSE guys as I think I have indicated before, so I am not being denegratory to you in the slightest. As for the continued exemplification of how to abuse a legal requirement "because we can", well just what does it take I wonder to actually induce a significant culture change and actually get the message across to both the willing participants and those who "manage" them. Answers, on a postcard please to--the general public who place their trust in the integrity of engineers every time they fly.

Jet II
14th Jun 2006, 08:37
well just what does it take I wonder to actually induce a significant culture change

Surely in any industry the 'culture' is set from the top - the shop floor can only react to 'initiatives' from management.

You will only change the culture when you change the personnel who instigate that culture.

PondLifeMan
14th Jun 2006, 10:30
Jet II...

I completely agree with the culture change requirement. However, it isn’t going to happen. Recently we cut the amount of (Area) Maintenance Managers from around 14 to 4 (not including the USA... but that’s another story). What an opportunity, you may think, to root out the poor managers! Well it only half worked; we've now got 2 of the best guys in the company out there working to keep us safe and 2 of the biggest Oxygen Thief’s to keep them company. One of them is the afore mentioned Roman stamper!

This then shows that, now that the die is cast, the company not only encourages people to sign aircraft without the proper authorisations, it rewards them by picking them over better qualified and better suited managers.

Krystal....
Thanks for the kind words. This time next year there will only be 44 of us. We are to become extinct, I think. Swallowed up by the larger organisation. Because there are so few of us Chirp and MOR just doesn't hold the same job security feelings that it, no doubt, has for other groups := . Sorry.

Good luck

PLM

gas path
14th Jun 2006, 14:07
PondLifeMan
Its not the number of 'area' maintenance managers that's the problem, althougth, yes, there are/were too many IMO, the problem lies in giving them as in certain cases certification rights!

Joetom
14th Jun 2006, 16:09
Gas path,
.
You say all aircraft would have been checked, guess it will be hard to find all the maint checks that were done/stamped by unsuitable person or persons over what period of time.???
.
I find it hard to belive that this was going on for such a long time with Manangers and Engineers aware and not doing out to fix the problem, the phrase "Rotton To The Core" comes to mind, would like to be a fly on the wall when the Managers explain how this sorry story was allowed to run to the CAA.!!!
.
Other posts mention an Engineer from FCO/CDG (Roman Stamper) who does the same has now been made a Big Manager, does the CAA know of this Engineer.???

gas path
14th Jun 2006, 17:48
Probably does now...or will very shortly:E
Seems like its not just BA, found THIS (http://www.aero-news.net/index.cfm?ContentBlockID=d9e00108-9bd3-407c-88bd-ee4d0a9c9ac3&) today:* but its interesting to see the company response:= That sends out a brilliant message, these guys obviously felt they had no choice but to go to the press.

AVIONIQUE
14th Jun 2006, 18:14
Standards are plummeting everywhere and are set to worsen if EASA and the big airlines get their way.The last two or three years have seen an acceleration in the decline of standards with the outsourcing of everything to the cheapest possible option.EASA are currently planning to scrap licenced engineers altogether to be replaced with "appropriately approved" people.So an airline or maintenance organisation will be able to get any cheap herbert and give them a stamp.I sadly have to agree with an earlier poster in that things will not improve until we have our own Kings Cross or worse.The CAA are emasculated and seemingly blind to the obvious,we are at the mercy of EASA and that is not a comfortable place to be.

keel beam
14th Jun 2006, 18:26
PLM and Gas Path I agree!


JetII I'm in agreement too

The last few safety incidents have produced reports on a bad safety culture. The safety culture has to be driven from the top, and I feel that this is not going to happen until:
a) A loss of an A/C and lives (God forbid!)
b) A change at the top.
So what are you going to bet on happening first?
__________________

The Footsoldier
14th Jun 2006, 19:56
The sad thing is that people don't go to the press or the caa straight away, most of us try and deal with these problems internally. but when your quality manager has a conflict of interest and is in the pocket and answerable to the hierarchy that are causing this culture what chance have you got. in general u don't want your companies dirty washing aired, but when u have totally lost confidence in these departments what other option is there, even going to the caa seems pointless, and CHIRP don't make me laugh. i totally agree until we have a big smoky hole in the ground with the smell of burning flesh and luggage strewn across the runway..........................................

Joetom
14th Jun 2006, 22:39
Just checked the BA website.
No mention of Aircraft that were flying around out of compliance, I would expect a note to tell people that the problem is now fixed.
Is the problem fixed.???

Sunfish
14th Jun 2006, 22:59
BA and Air Canada have now joined my permanent "No Fly" list. Rest assured I will spread the word at every opportunity......and the reason why.

We seem to be engaged in a world wide race to see how badly engineers, pilots and cabin crew can be treated before lives are lost. It's a race to the bottom. Experience and professionalsim are now dirty words because they are in direct conflict with the managerial approach adopted bythe less experienced.

I'm sorry, but I think that it will take more than one hull loss and many, many, deaths to reverse the trend.

GotTheTshirt
14th Jun 2006, 23:33
As has been said "if you think CAA is bad wait till you have EASA in full control" :mad:

gas path
15th Jun 2006, 00:33
Joetom
Is the problem fixed.???
Yes! the affected a/c were pulled back, the work redone and recertified.
"if you think CAA is bad wait till you have EASA in full control"
...and that's not all. You now have the manufacturers vying with each other with "our aircraft need less maintenance than your aircraft" which has led to an increase in the times between checks and less maintenance done on those checks, daily checks now required every third day for instance.
So mr. sunfish you'll soon be able to add every Boeing and Airbus along with anything maintained under the auspices of EASA and the FAA to your permanent 'no fly' list:p :p
So that leaves.....er..........um:hmm:

Sunfish
15th Jun 2006, 01:15
Chinese or russian aircraft?

Jet II
15th Jun 2006, 09:55
Depressing to read yet again about systemic failures within BA - how long is thisi going to go on?
I see that the proposal to re-introduce Supervision has been delayed yet again (strange especially considering the BA told the AAIB that they'd re-introduced it last October!)
It looks as though BA Engineering management are, in the jargon of the day, 'not fit for purpose'
:{

Rhoda Horswunce
16th Jun 2006, 17:27
The engineer who allowed his stamp to be illegally used might yet face charges; he damned well should.

As somebody else stated early on in this thread, incitement is an inchoate offence and in my humble opinion this man should be charged. As a licensed engineer he is well aware of the fact that the ANO & Regulations has not been repealed and even if he holds an EASA license [as opposed to a UK CAA Licence] he can not falsify or help to falsify an aircraft's documents in the UK.

This man has lowered, even further, the reputation of licensed technicians/engineers in the eyes of the flight crews, NAAs and perhaps even the general public.

BOAC73
16th Jun 2006, 17:46
There is no justification for what happened at BAMG. I knew this chap and did not have him down as a fool....until now. However I do not believe the scenario as described in this thread is 100% true either. Still no excuse though.
Across BA engineering and its operation there must be hundreds of tasks certified by our A&B licenced techs every day. It is totally wrong to assume that we are all unsafe and not to be trusted.
The actions of one person has dragged us all down.
I expected the usual "drama queens" to latch on to this and I wasn't wrong.
The report on the 777 with the fuel tank panel missing is due out soon. No doubt we'll end up on a certain wally's no fly list twice.
All of my fellow BA engineers I have spoken to are disgusted at this chaps action.
A manager with a stamp? Obviously some positive action by BA has to come out of this. In my opinion I believe a manager is justified to hold a category C authorisation ONLY.
B73

The Footsoldier
16th Jun 2006, 23:01
my undestanding is that at BAMG the caa have given a dispensation for C stamp managers to be able to certify on the same aircraft that they are C stamping, which isn't the norm. if you hold a C stamp for closing the pack on a particular aircraft my understanding is you are not allowed to certify tasks within that workpack, but at BAMG as i said i believe they can do this. the good old caa will give u dispensation for anything if u send them a cheque

spannersatcx
17th Jun 2006, 09:11
Of course the really simple answer is.........don't use stamps!:D

Bus429
17th Jun 2006, 12:13
I remember that, when working on the line with EK at DXB, we were only to use our signatures and authorisation numbers when certifying technical log entries.
As for the current thread, BA contend that safety has not been compromised. Absolute codswallop, of course safety has been compromised! Licensing and authorisations are part of a system to ensure the highest possible levels of safety. AWN Notice 3 outlines the responsibilities of an LAE in the UK.
If this engineer did as the press reports allege, he deserves to lose his licence. The individual to whom he passed his authorisation also made illegal certifications and deserves some level of sanction. I suspect, however, the CAA will do very little - they may leave it to BA who may be quite happy for the furore to fade ASAP. Over the last three years, BA has been the subject of three very critical reports by the UK AAIB concerning maintenance standards; sure signs that a shake-up is in order.:yuk:

JamesA
17th Jun 2006, 12:52
Some years ago I read the CAA charged a man with fraud after copying part of someone else's licence to get a job. Surely 'lending' a stamp is basically the same thing. A man is pretending through the use of a stamp to be another person. Any legal beagles care to pass an opinion? The two of them have denigrated the engineer's profession at a time when they (the good guys), need all the positive recognition they richly deserve. the very least for these two should be dismissal and all companies informed of their names, etc.

As for the use of stamps only, this can be easily bypassed. When working for another company, my stamp fell under a vehicle wheel and was instantly rendered unreadable, I had to work the next few days writing my number in the stamp column, not the end of the world.
Another instance, I was given a work pack to clear. Checking signatures against stamps, there was a name, signature and the stamp number written by hand. I went after the man, who said, 'that is not my number, and that is not my signature.' This left me in something of a quandry, it was a multi-national company - do I call in the dogs or file a complaint through the company QA dept. I chose the latter, (have often wondered if I should have filed a MOR), and out of courtesy sent the Mtc Mgr a copy. All hell broke loose when I next went to work,the Mtc Mgr either failed or didn't want to understand the seriousness of the situation. The guilty party was the last person I would have suspected. I became the black sheep, he was promoted, sounds familiar? Stamps are not a foolproof method of identity, more a convenience, whether for fair or foul purposes.

PAXboy
17th Jun 2006, 14:14
Quite apart from the debate as to who carries what level of sign off, the technology to make an electronic sign off is now available to anyone. If retina scan is used to gain access to the country, then it can be used for this.

Yes, it will cost money but the present policies of saving money are, in due course, going to cost even more money than retina scans. Most humans will go for the money and the short term gain. Regulation is supposed to prevent that. But, since governments are also made up of humans ...

The next airline to implement the saftey standards of 20 years ago, with the electronic protection of today, will have won themselves a bargaining chip. Naturally, I do not expect this to happen because that would mean admitting that things have been allowed to slide to save money.

mafibacon
17th Jun 2006, 16:02
Caution: My view on this thread may be slightly biased!

I believe the corporate responsibility for the actions of the employee who was the authorised person is that of the employer and ultimately the Accountable Manager!

I believe it is the responsibility of the employer to control the actions of employees under whose delegated authority the authorisation is being exercised.

The ANO, Article 94, quite clearly states, I believe, that in this case, the employee who was the holder of the authority and the person who used it, were both guilty of a breech of the law of the land – this under the patronage of the employer – Accountable Manager!

To my mind, this make both individuals and employer – Accountable Manager, guilty of breaking the law, since the employer was, or if correctly managed, should have been aware, of the manpower shortages that existed and was the root cause of the problem. They were clearly aware of, and condoned the actions of the individuals concerned.

Question: Is mis-management within the maintenance department by both the Quality and Production Managers and therefore the Accountable Manager sufficient cause for maintenance approval to be revoked by the CAA, (EASA)?

EASA Part. A. 145.30 requires the approval holder to employ sufficient staff to maintain the aircraft/components authorised in it Operations Specification to the required standards. Failure to do so could invalidate its EASA approval, and (imho) should mean the immediate suspension of its EASA 145 approval.

However, the UKCAA, as the EASA (in)competent authority, will probably sit back and wait until some smaller organisation, that does not have the political and corporate clout available to BA, to slightly bend the rules, and act as they should have done when this problem was first brought to their attention.

To sum up, it is my opinion:

(a) That both engineers should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

(b) The Approved organisations EASA Part 145 approval should have be suspended forthwith, until such time as the organisation proved they had sufficient manpower to perform the maintenance for which they hold approval. AND, they should prove that the management systems in place would not allow this situation to arise in the first place.

(c) The Engineering Management of the organisation, including the Accountable Manager, should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law for knowingly aiding and abetting the individuals concerned to break the law.

(d) The CAA, as EASA “competent authority” should be censored for their apparent lack of maintenance oversight on this organisation, as required by EASA Part B.145.

Extracts from the ANO:-

Offences in relation to documents and records.

94 (1) A person shall not with intent to deceive:
(a) use any certificate, licence, approval, permission, exemption or other document issued or required by or under this Order or by or under Part 21, 66, 145, 147 or M which has been forged, altered, revoked or suspended, or to which he is not entitled;
(b) lend any certificate, licence, approval, permission, exemption or any other document issued or having effect or required by or under this Order or by or under Part 21, 66, 145, 147 or M to, or allow it to be used by, any other person; or
(c) make any false representation for the purpose of procuring for himself or any other person the grant, issue, renewal or variation of any such certificate, licence, approval, permission or exemption or other document; and in this paragraph a reference to a certificate, licence, approval, permission, exemption or other document includes a copy or purported copy.
(2) A person shall not intentionally damage, alter or render illegible any log book or other record required by or under this Order or by or under Part 21, 66, 145, 147 or M to be maintained or any entry made therein, or knowingly make, or procure or assist in the making of, any false entry in or material omission from any such log book or record or destroy any such log book or record during the period for which it is required under this Order to be preserved.
(3) All entries made in writing in any log book or record referred to in paragraph (2) shall be made in ink or indelible pencil.
(4) A person shall not knowingly make in a load sheet any entry which is incorrect in any material particular, or any material omission from such a load sheet.
(5) A person shall not purport to issue any certificate for the purposes of this Order, of any regulations made there under or of Part 21, 66, 145, 147 or M unless he is authorised to do so under this Order or Part 21, 66, 145, 147 or M as the case may be.
(6) A person shall not issue any such certificate as aforesaid unless he has satisfied himself that all statements in the certificate are correct.

21 October 2005
CAP 393 Air Navigation: The Order and the Regulations
Section 1 Part 7 Page 5


Penalties
148 (1) If any provision of this Order, or any regulations made thereunder or of Part 21, 145 or M is contravened in relation to an aircraft, the operator of that aircraft and the commander and, in the case of a contravention of article 138, the charterer of that aircraft, shall (without prejudice to the liability of any other person for that contravention) be deemed for the purposes of the following provisions of this article to have contravened that provision unless he proves that the contravention occurred without his consent or connivance and that he exercised all due diligence to prevent the contravention.
(2) If it is proved that an act or omission of any person which would otherwise have been a contravention by that person of a provision of this Order, or any regulations made thereunder or of Part 21, 66, 145, 147 or M was due to any cause not avoidable by the exercise of reasonable care by that person the act or omission shall be deemed not to be a contravention by that person of that provision.
(3) Where a person is charged with contravening a provision of this Order or any regulations made thereunder by reason of his having been a member of the flight crew of an aircraft on a flight for the purpose of public transport or aerial work the flight shall be treated (without prejudice to the liability of any other person under this Order) as not having been for that purpose if he proves that he neither knew nor suspected that the flight was for that purpose.
(4) If any person contravenes any provision of this Order, or any regulations made thereunder or of Part 21, 66, 145, 147 or M not being a provision referred to in paragraph (5), (6) or (7), he shall be guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding Level 3 on the standard scale.
(5) If any person contravenes any provision specified in Part A of Schedule 14 he shall be guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding Level 4 on the standard scale.
(6) If any person contravenes any provision specified in Part B of the said Schedule he shall be guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum and on conviction on indictment to a fine or imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years or both.
(7) If any person contravenes any provision specified in Part C of the said Schedule he shall be guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum and on conviction on indictment to a fine or imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years or both.


MB

Bus429
17th Jun 2006, 18:38
Mafibacon,
All good points but I'm afraid the UK CAA would probably balk at suspending BA's complete Part 145 but could - and should - remove the GLA Base Maintenance facility from their EASA Form 3. This amounts to a Level 1 finding and indicates that BA has problems.
Excerpts from the AAIB's report into the incident involving G-CPER (757 with panels missing on right outboard flap assembly):
"Maintenance staff were often willing to certify for tasks performed by
others without verifying that the task had been completed correctly.
14. The culture of 'blind-stamping' was reinforced by the duplication of panel
job cards.
15. Some maintenance staff did not fully appreciate the role that certification
plays in the chain of airworthiness control."

PAXboy
17th Jun 2006, 18:56
Mafibacon, to an outsider, that was an extremely helpful and logically set out post. Thank you.

Suspension of accreditation appears to be called for and would give the employer a smart rebuke before lives are endangered. Prosecution of the individuals appears to be called for and would give the UK passenger great comfort.

Now, let me see about holding my breath ... :hmm:

Joetom
17th Jun 2006, 20:27
Mafibacon.
.
Nice post and looks like you hit all the nails on the head.
.
Such a lack of action from the CAA is very strange.
.
I wonder if the CAA have been given 100M airmiles to use with a UK airline.???
.
Am still very interested to know how many people knew this was going on at GLA before it made it to the outside world, was it just the Manager and the Tech or were the local Staff and Managers well aware of this madness.
.
Hope some of the GLA BA staff will answer my last question!

Ranger One
17th Jun 2006, 20:30
Some years ago I read the CAA charged a man with fraud after copying part of someone else's licence to get a job. Surely 'lending' a stamp is basically the same thing

I'm no lawyer - except occasional of the barrack room variety! - FL is your man for that. But I think in the first case the phrase 'to get a job' is the key. That makes it, if I have my legal terminology right, 'obtaining a pecuniary advantage by deception' - lying to get money (wages in that case), in plain language. A form of fraud.

I don't think that would apply in the current case - there's no suggestion the guy would get the sack if he didn't 'play ball' by lending his stamp, for instance. He was just doing what was apparently fairly normal in what would seem to be a somewhat fast & loose operation. It's a serious matter in aviation terms, but I don't know what the legal charge would be, if any is possible. FL?

R1

WeatherJinx
17th Jun 2006, 22:17
Doesn't CHIRP (http://www.chirp.co.uk) cover this kind of thing (assuming someone could have been in a position to spot it happening of course)? Is there wide awareness on the engineering-side of the industry that this channel exists for confidential reporting?

If not, perhaps word needs to be spread and this form (http://www.chirp.co.uk/main/Downloads/Report%20Forms/PDFs/Eng%20report.pdf) distributed.

spannersatcx
17th Jun 2006, 22:32
Yes CHIRP would cover this type of thing, there is also UK legislation now that covers/protects whistleblowers.

To my mind there has to be some accountability further up, i.e. management, they must of known there was a lack of qualified certifiers at Glasgow, and what normally happens is you get relief from another station, or you actually employ the correct amount of staff in the first place.

The guys that got caught weren't doing themselves any favours, just favours for the company, and it looks like management condoned it.

In the light of recent events, there's some serious questions need asking and answering, has the CAA got the dogs danglies to do it, doubt it.:mad:

PAXboy
17th Jun 2006, 23:35
spannersatcxTo my mind there has to be some accountability further up, i.e. management, they must of known there was a lack of qualified certifiers at Glasgow
I'm not so sure. These days, the culture in many companies is to hide your problems and pretend that everything is just dandy. Part of this (but only part) stems from the ghastly, "Don't bring me problems, bring me solutions" statements. The solution was (it seems) to pay for more staff. If they know that is not acceptable to those above, then they might try to 'fix' the problem. Been done before in any number of companies.

FlightDetent
18th Jun 2006, 00:43
If any provision of this Order, or any regulations made thereunder or of Part 21, 145 or M is contravened in relation to an aircraft, the operator of that aircraft and the commander and, in the case of a contravention of article 138, the charterer of that aircraft, shall (without prejudice to the liability of any other person for that contravention) be deemed for the purposes of the following provisions of this article to have contravened that provision unless he proves that the contravention occurred without his consent or connivance and that he exercised all due diligence to prevent the contravention.

What? Too-loose me thinks. :O

Mac the Knife
18th Jun 2006, 07:53
The point is he gave his stamp to some-one else to use in his absence.

Some of you will remember that misuse of QC stamps was one of the problems picked up in the Rogers Commission report on the original Challenger disaster.

:=

Bus429
18th Jun 2006, 09:15
...and if you read acident reports such as that covering Alaska 261, "pencil-whipping" (signing tasks off without accomplishing them) and pressure to pencil whip are cited several times; also mentioned in many NTSB reports covering fatal acidents is poor oversight by the FAA.
I talk to many maintenance engineers in the course of my job and, almost to a man/woman, they claim commercial pressure - and pressure not to follow procedures, particularly towards the end of a maintenance input - is rife.

Perrin
18th Jun 2006, 09:41
It really hurts sometimes to see the state that we are into with no control over the big boys in the aviation world, we look to the CAA to keep them in check and as I stated before these airlines were held up as a example. They are now an accident waiting to happen. I feel sorry for the good guys who try everyday to do it the right way then hear about things like this done at high level. Keep trying to do it right boys.
The CAA must do something about this to show they do have the power and guts to sort it all out before !!!!!! Happens.

Sunfish
18th Jun 2006, 10:43
BOAC73, as someone who has worked for an airline's engineeering division, your comments regarding compliance of 99% with the regulations being "OK" is out of line.

Safety standards are not based "on the balance of probabilities". You either do the checks or you don't.

Given the size of BA's operation - which I don't know, but lets say there are 3000 engineers, lets assume each engineer certifies one job a day. A 99.5% compliance rate means that at any one time there are 15 jobs signed off that shouldn't be. That happens every day.

I called Ansett Airlines on this when defects appeared on their B767's and their CEO lied on public radio saying there was "no problem". Their AOC was pulled some weeks later.

There is no excuse for this behaviour and I hope that BA has come down on it like a ton of bricks. Once you lose confidence in the fact that maintenance and overhaul signoffs are accurate you are in very very deep trouble.

AUTOGLIDE
18th Jun 2006, 11:43
What a very, very sad state of affairs. I doubt very much the CAA will do anything substantial about it either, they never have in the past...:rolleyes:

PAXboy
18th Jun 2006, 12:15
So ... if the big boys are cutting costs and corners on maintenance and the LCC boys are cutting costs and corners on rosters leading to fatigue: Which to avoid? Of course, I could ask the question, Which will have the first smoking hole? but we know that it's a lottery as to who will get caught out first.

woptb
18th Jun 2006, 19:04
Unfortunately abuse of legislation both company,national & international is endemic!
Those who are fully compliant are the exception. In my experience the way companies respond to negative points raised on CAA audits is 'laughable'!
CHIRPS also appears ineffectual,again some of the responses to points raised by CHIRPS is riseable!
I've had very negative experiences with how the CAA SRG & CHIRPS respond to issues. If one were charitable their efforts could be seen as naive!
Out-sourcing,cost-cutting,downsizing have all been issues I have seen addressed by airlines , big & small, unfortunately the way they were handled all led to a degradation of standards to a lesser or greater degree.
I shall leave this industry as soon as I am able! I have had it!

cirrus01
18th Jun 2006, 20:42
BA Internal propaganda full of back slapping congrats about getting the aircraft checks out of GLA all on time...................now we know how they do it .:mad:

Just ask the engineers at LGW about the problems encountered with 737s just off check out of GLA.


There is no doubt that senior mis-management at BA Engineering should be held accountable for this, as this was happening for a long time and was not just an isolated incident.

greatwhitehunter
18th Jun 2006, 20:43
I would point out that if you think things are bad with respect to engineering standards now they are set to get much worse if EASA has it's way. EASA wants to remove the licencing system and replace it with company run 'in house' schemes to train and authorise 'suitable persons'.

Of course you all know your company will select people of intelligence and integrity, will train them rigorously and only authorise them when suitably experienced and can pass properly moderated examinations. No cognisance will be taken of any shortage of qualfied staff by the company. Also the individuals will feel in no way influenced by being beholden to the company for their qualifications.

:(

apologies for thread drift but I needed to get it off my chest.

Krystal n chips
18th Jun 2006, 22:51
BA Internal propaganda full of back slapping congrats about getting the aircraft checks out of GLA all on time...................now we know how they do it .:mad:
Just ask the engineers at LGW about the problems encountered with 737s just off check out of GLA.
There is no doubt that senior mis-management at BA Engineering should be held accountable for this, as this was happening for a long time and was not just an isolated incident.

No doubt "Pravda" is full of unctious praise----is it ever anything else ?--but I would not shout too loudly about Engineers and LGW given the infamous stamping that took place there as I recall. If it's any consolation to you however, the practices mentioned here duly migrated their way Northwards--interestingly enough with an influx of "management" from the South. By the way, this wouldn't be the same engineers at LGW who happily burnt 1200kgs of fuel overnight by leaving an APU running out of spite as they were not working the aircraft would it ?. For info to others, that's an APU running for 12 hrs at 100kgs p/h. Not quite the objective of it's intended use.

BOAC73
19th Jun 2006, 04:45
...lets hope that last post was really your last post.
What a load of drivel.
You are obviously an ex BA employee....maybe enjoying retirement on your APS pension? Who knows....who cares?

Please let me reassure those folks who are reading this thread. The vast majority of us at BA engineering come to work to do a good job. There will be no smoking hole at the end of the runway, but rest assured, that is not a complacent attitude, it stems from years as a licenced engineer, and knowing my limitations.
Safe flying everyone!
B73

itwilldoatrip
19th Jun 2006, 09:57
The real issue of this thread is the fact that the unoficial stamping happened. NOTHING has been done yet by the CAA, this is because it's Big Airway's. As a consequence it puts us engineers in a bad position especially with the issue of 'The Appropriately Authorised Person' looming about. We should be using this as an issue to keep our jobs coz as sure as eggs is eggs this will be the norm if EASA has their way. The CAA will show their true colours over this and the silence is deafening.
Krystal you sure show the comradeship that has put us engineers in the position we are in now with EASA:ugh:

NWT
19th Jun 2006, 19:12
The response from the CAA was normal..ie do nothing. I know of a UK licensed Engineer recently caught out signing and stamping for items that were not carried out because he couldnt be bothered to do them or whatever reason, the work included mods which were not done even though they were stamped for. Said person was made to leave company and was reported to CAA, who basically said they weren't interested as the airline involved was not UK based. Even though the work was carried out (or not as the case may be) by a UK licensed engineer at a maintenance facility in the UK !
Said engineer is still working for another airline now in the UK.....another one for the no fly list ?.............

Krystal n chips
20th Jun 2006, 07:16
...lets hope that last post was really your last post.
What a load of drivel.
You are obviously an ex BA employee....maybe enjoying retirement on your APS pension? Who knows....who cares?

BOAC73----I would echo the same sentiment concerning your own post(s) however, I have no wish to engage in a public slanging match. And for your information, I am still working and am not, and never will be, a beneficiary of APS.


Please let me reassure those folks who are reading this thread. The vast majority of us at BA engineering come to work to do a good job. There will be no smoking hole at the end of the runway, but rest assured, that is not a complacent attitude, it stems from years as a licenced engineer, and knowing my limitations.
Safe flying everyone!
B73


As for the examples I used to illustrate that systemic failure is endemic within BA engineering, well the first one is well known and has been for years. The second was just one small example to support the first. In this industry, people talk to one another and we don't all have the insulariity of many who work for BA. Hence, when incidents happen, whether they make the public eye or not, they invariably get discussed at some point. Given the cumulative effects of increasing incidents with the organisation concerned, would you not agree that something is sadly and dangerously wrong and, as such, needs to be rectified and not simply ignored or subjected to a cosmetic gesture in the hope, that, nothing more serious will occur with the erosion of safety procedures designed to prevent such in the first place.

Joetom
20th Jun 2006, 10:54
Question.
.
How many BA staff at GLA were aware this was going on before it went public.??????????????????????:

Joetom
21st Jun 2006, 10:40
Question.
.
How many BA staff at GLA were aware this was going on before it went public.??????????????????????:
.
Still no answer to my previous question, I think my question has been answered, the CAA will be busy in GLA I guess.???

AUTOGLIDE
21st Jun 2006, 11:26
.
Still no answer to my previous question, I think my question has been answered, the CAA will be busy in GLA I guess.???


Irrespective of the amount of staff at BAMG who knew about it, (which is unknown, and it would be unfair in the extreme to brand everyone as guity), I unfortunately doubt the CAA will be very busy at all to be perfectly honest.

Joetom
21st Jun 2006, 11:39
Autoglide.
.
I think the amout of staff aware of this working they do in BAMG is very important, if it was well known by other staff and no action was taken, then not just a case off these two enginners at fault, will be a general BAMG way of working or even other/all parts of BA Engineering.
.
As I mentioned before, no people/staff have answered my question, come on chapps at GLA, was it only the two engineers who knew of this stamp on walk about duties.???

yamaha
21st Jun 2006, 14:01
Why all the fuss?

So BA have become European, shouldn't be any surprises there. Is was always going to be just a question of time.

You have probably seen the posts about EASA ridding the world of the Licensed engineer and single release.

Well what do you think single release actually means in reality.
If you think that some well qualified, experienced licence holder has supervised and managed the work........THINK AGAIN.

Even though this BA saga has put yet another nail in the LAE's coffin, it is common practice throughout Europe.

So bearing that in mind, what do you really think the CAA are going to do about it?

greatwhitehunter
21st Jun 2006, 14:17
I always remember an interview, albeit many years ago, with the head of the CAA. He stated that the main purpose of the CAA was to ensure the profitability of the British aviation industry.:confused:

itwilldoatrip
21st Jun 2006, 16:36
yahamaha

What a sad reply. Given us all an early bath.If this is excactly whats been going on in Europe for years this is excactly why our CAA licence is recognised throughout the world and not the other European ones. Is also why the CAA should be NOT sitting on thier hands and doing something proactive to help us out.

Check the overseas job adverts they want CAA EASA licences wonder why.:=

yamaha
21st Jun 2006, 16:49
Its not a sad reply, its reality.

The point being that who is going to take on all of Europe and win?

The answer is nobody.

Therefore your days are numbered and the CAA will not take on a lost cause!
That is what is sad about all this.

AUTOGLIDE
21st Jun 2006, 17:50
Autoglide.
.
I think the amout of staff aware of this working they do in BAMG is very important, if it was well known by other staff and no action was taken, then not just a case off these two enginners at fault, will be a general BAMG way of working or even other/all parts of BA Engineering.
.
As I mentioned before, no people/staff have answered my question, come on chapps at GLA, was it only the two engineers who knew of this stamp on walk about duties.???

Hey Joetom, I think you may have missed my point here a little bit. What I'm getting at is that as it stands, nobody knows how many people at BAMG knew about it, so let's not start blaming everyone, it may be just a few bad eggs, maybe everyone is a bad egg, I don't know and neither does anyone else except the staff of BAMG. But however many, I doubt CAA will do anything in a meaningful way.
What I personally find so awful is that basically, how the hell did aircraft maintenance come to this in the UK? When I did my BCAR Multi-X etc it was a serious profession, to say I'm gutted at the way this (aircraft maintenance and aviation in general) is all going would the biggest ever understatement I've ever made. I didn't invest 8 years of my life in an apprenticeship and studying to become a Licensed Aircraft Engineer (licences which turned out to be harder than the BSc Honours degree I completed afterwards) to be in this sort of industry. It's just not good enough.

legza kimbo
21st Jun 2006, 20:51
Great White Hunter, in response to your earlier "off thread" post. Myself and a few of my workmates have written to our mp's and mep's on the matter that you very eloquently put across. So far the response has been promising and they are trying to confront EASA from various angles, be it through the European parliament, or through european and nations transport ministers.
Maybe more letters to different MP's, may bring it to the public's attention. All MPs and MEPs can easily be found on google.
The BA case could become more the norm, if companies are allowed to self regulate.

My apologies for also wandering off thread.

seatofmypants
22nd Jun 2006, 11:27
The facts of the matter are gentlemen, in days gone by, all the managers stamping ability was removed due to this sort of thing and for this type of reason, i.e. managers certifying aircraft and stamping of work without actually leaving their desks. This is illegal and totally undermines the system and safety of aircraft, i.e if you put your car into a garage for a service you expect it to be done. In recent years particularly at glasgow maintenance base, managers have been quietly given their stamping ability back, you must understand that a manager with a stamp has a conflict of interest, i.e. he must perform or be seen to perform to obtain their targets to get their bonuses, one way to do this is to stamp the task cards without actually doing the work, or ensuring that it has been done in accordance with. their is a problem with with blind stamping at glasgow and this is mainly due to these managers with stamps, the newspaper reports are very accurate although the main culprate has got off lightly, and this is the unqualified prat who actually carried out the happy stamping. the main basis of holding authorisations is that you know exactly what you are allowed to stamp for and what you are not this prat knew exactly what he was doing and knew exactly that he shouldn't have done this, this happy stamping was also carried out over a long period and affected at least nine aircraft that they know off.

what the caa have got to understand is the CULTURE that has been created and this is the dangerous word CULTURE, because then people think it is the norm, the simple example is that someone happy stamps a back up system as being serviceable when it is not and the main system fails in flight, then the real problems begin. most licenced engineers consider themselves as professionals which they are, but until the caa insist on stamps being removed from people who have a conflict of interest within an organisation then this culture will continue.

Bad Airways have had a few highlighted lucky escapes in the last couple of years down to this sort of happy/blind stamping, it just goes to show that they haven't learned anything.

You are spot on.......this is a culture issue within BA. Everybody else.....take a look at the AAIB website and wake up to the problems. For an airline to say safety was not compromised is utter PR rubbish. How do they explain a B777 with fuel spraying out of its underside then only inches from a bleed air duct, or a B757 with uncommanded roll inputs....all due to BAD practice within the Airline. It is time that engineers took a long hard look at how they work, and yes i am one, and started to challenge their employers. Unfortunately it will take an accident to make people wake up to this.....because it's not only BA...it is everywhere!!

The Footsoldier
22nd Jun 2006, 22:47
joe tom/autoglide to be honest i dont believe many people knew about it, only people close to this prat, who incidentaly was a bit of a loner and obviously the managers, and i mean the managers plural who were involved, bearing in mind that these two prats were on different shifts, the other shift manager either knew about this or believed in the licence fairies, and another factor in this was this whole thing was as i am aware highlighted by a memeber of tmg staff who was a bit scared of these impending redundancies coming up, a case of you're going before me buster and the fact that the manager concerned has lets say just a few enemies due to the shafting he has done over the years, lets say a case of poetic justice, Karma and all that. this isn't an isolated incident although has been the worse to date, even now managers are still stamping their lives away for work they haven't seen its the culture you see, that the senior manager at bamg has created

Bus429
23rd Jun 2006, 09:12
Footsoldier,
Good points (but pause for breath occasionally;) )

Managers should not hold authorisations; they should manage. Several incidents have been attributed to supervisors/managers doing hands-on tasks.
Any certifer stamping blind or penning off known problems is an absolute idiot and deserves to lose their licence and their job. Some cite comercial pressure and being forced into it. Those forcing a certifier to sign blind may not have a licence to lose.
I am amazed that some people can be so stupid.

Krystal n chips
23rd Jun 2006, 17:23
Footsoldier,
Good points (but pause for breath occasionally;) )

Managers should not hold authorisations; they should manage. Several incidents have been attributed to supervisors/managers doing hands-on tasks.
Any certifer stamping blind or penning off known problems is an absolute idiot and deserves to lose their licence and their job. Some cite comercial pressure and being forced into it. Those forcing a certifier to sign blind may not have a licence to lose.
I am amazed that some people can be so stupid.

BUS 429, with all due respect concerning your above post, which is clearly based on a realistic view, what you are probably not aware of is that within BA intimidation, bullying and indeed victimisation against those who are not perceived as being "intrinsic to BA" shall we say, are well established facets of the culture -----so I am given to understand. I quote verbatim here, one snippet of a conversation I had in passing with a BA manager " I'm a BA manager, I can do what I want". And he duly did.

Joetom
24th Jun 2006, 12:02
Krtstal & chips.
.
Your last post is about right, Managers ask LAEs to Sign/Stamp for work that should have been done, "but panels now fitted or aircraft has left hanger or departed so please just do as I ask" because I am a BA Manager.
.
The correct course of action for the LAE would be to not Sign/Stamp the work off, phone the CAA at that point and fill out an MOR.
.
The LAE would not be very popular with the Managers and would stand a very high chance of being Bullied by them in a whole manor of fashions.
.
What happons in real life is, the Managers know the LAEs who they can scare easy and dump on them all the time.
.
This Culture can be fixed by either BA or the AAIB/CAA, not sure BA have the will to change looking at how they failed to action changes after the last round of AAIB reports into serious events. I think the AAIB will action the changes required, just a little matter of which event will force change.:eek:

AUTOGLIDE
25th Jun 2006, 07:33
If memory serves me correctly, wasn't the infamous BAC 1-11 windscreen incident, where the wrong bolts were used, also involve a manager or other desk jockey?

Bus429
25th Jun 2006, 09:06
Autoglide,
You are quite correct, 1-11 incident was perpetrated by a Shift Maintenance Manager doing a hands-on task; so too was the BMI 737-400 total oil loss in 1995. Looks as if we are not learning the lessons; maintenance/technical errors are now the biggest causes of aviation incidents and accidents and the trend is still upwards.

Krystal n chips,
Thanks for your comments. I must admit that, in nearly thirty years of maintaining aircraft - or being involved in the maintenance process - I have only once been "leaned on" to sign off a defect (I refused). BA managers seem to be an arrogant lot.

(edited to amend "supervisor" to "Shift Maintenance Manager")

greatwhitehunter
25th Jun 2006, 12:00
The 1-11 window incident was perpetrated by a manager not a supervisor. The supervisors and technicians were on strike at the time.
The CAA report was scandalous in the way it excused some of what happened. If the CAA had come down hard it would have put itself in the frame as it allowed the company to continue operating for far too long using staff with no recency.

BOAC73
25th Jun 2006, 14:20
GWH,
exactly which report ref the Birmingham 1-11 incident are you posting about?

Were the recency regulations in force at the time?

Shall we ignore the facts and just continue BA bashing....more fun eh?

B73.

BOAC73
25th Jun 2006, 15:25
ASFKAP,
the policy of passivating managers authorisations was not consistently applied across BA engineering.
As a result there are still a significant number of managers holding B authorisations. Hopefully the BAMG incident will see an end to this.
I think it is a good thing for them to hold the C authorisation.
B73

ExAvio
25th Jun 2006, 15:27
I remember not too many years ago, before I told BA where to stick their job, getting a call on my mobile asking me if I'd come into work to certify jobcards.

I refused for two reasons:

1. I was not present when the work was being carried out
2. I was so p**sed I was in no fit state to drive, yet alone certify aircraft!

The first point was ignored, the manager in question wanted to send a taxi to pick me up from the pub so I wouldn't "risk my licence!". At that point I switched my mobile off and bought another drink!

Getting home late that evening I was shocked to find the same manager had called my wife after I'd hung up, demanding to know where I was!

My next day on shift was interesting, with comments like "With your attitude you'll have no future in BA". Thinking back I wish I'd called the CAA at that point but I didn't, I turned my back on the manager and walked out.

About a week later I handed my notice in. My future with BA didn't last long did it?

BOAC73
25th Jun 2006, 15:40
ExAvio......so he asked you to come in early? How early?
Hopefully 24 hrs at least. There are laws about alcohol limits and the LAE.
Ths sort of thing does happen, but normally only to people who are up for it....how did he know your mobile number?
Bet your payslips recorded a few hours o/t too!
B73.

Krystal n chips
25th Jun 2006, 17:26
With regard to the Glasgow fiasco, does anybody know exactly how and why the CAA became involved here given that BA are unlikely to have reported the matter and what, if any, developments have subsequently transpired ?.

greatwhitehunter
25th Jun 2006, 18:33
BOAC

The report was the CAA's own report into the incident, shown to me by a quality engineer of the time. He made some stong comments on the report and the manager concerned.

Also I was not BA bashing, merely correcting an earlier incorrect statement.
I feel that my colleagues in BA are a very dedicated, professional group so I reserve the right to feel angry when a small minority of people, mainly misguided managers, bring them into disrepute.

It's not for any one individual, except the moderator, to determine what is posted here. I respectfully suggest you wind your neck in.

cirrus01
25th Jun 2006, 19:13
The Role of Management

Senior management must be a part of and not apart from, the safety culture. Management does not look down upon the organisation and direct it by edict; rather it influences the culture as a participating component of that culture.

It is not what management say they believe but what they do about it that is noted by others. Hence, there is no point in appointing a Safety Officer or Safety Representative if that officer is 'in name only' without the discretionary powers required to enact and ensure compliance with safety policies.

If employees observe management condoning or indirectly promoting something unsafe, then they lose faith in the system. When employee groups feel that they cannot trust management, they will reject with suspicion any new initiatives.

The first task for management is to gain and keep the trust of their employees.



Extract from What is Our Safety Culture?
Rod Young
British Airways GM Corporate Air Safety


Flywise no.168



I looking foward to seeing some evidence to back up these fine words............but I won't be holding my breath.:ugh: :ugh: :ugh:

Sunfish
25th Jun 2006, 22:52
Nothing will change until there are not one, but several smoking holes in the ground all over the world. Different airlines, but it will be a common chain of circumstances.

1. Pressure on engineering - Inadequate maintenance(training, time pressures experieince)

2. Pressure on Pilots - duty hours, training standards, experience.

3 Pressure on Cabin Crew - dt hours, training standards, experience.

Management of ALL airlines are in a "race to the bottom" to explore how low they can get their costs before safety is affected.

Unfortunately none of them will be on board when the guinea pigs (sorry, I mean travelling public) start to find out.

Ban me if you like, but my old airline job was monitoring safety performance . There is more than ample evidence on Pprune that safety s being downgraded very subtly. This is occuring in many places all over the world, and that regulatory authorities are powerless to stop it.

Everyone is slavishly following the NASA management model: "It hasn't happened yet, so obviously it isn't going to happen."

Joetom
25th Jun 2006, 23:36
Sunfish.
.
About rite. it will take a couple or three big one's to stop the slide, it will happon, just not sure when...!!!!

jondc9
26th Jun 2006, 00:29
sunfish and others:

I agree with you on this sad "bean counter" induced slide to the bottom. you may recall here in the states a tragic and unneccesary crash of an ALASKA airlines MD80 series aircraft.
In order to save money, a non standard method of lubricating a jack screw won approval from the FAA. Never in the history of the type had a plane crashed due to this problem if the manufacturers reccomendations had been followed.

NASA is a joke these days. To emulate them is just awful.

I salute all of you who are speaking out on this subject. It is not just BA, but the whole industry.

I for one would like to see the airlines re-regulated with higher standards in all the subjects that sunfish mentioned.

regards

jon

Frangible
26th Jun 2006, 12:02
The BAC 1-11 incident was an important precedent so we should get the facts straight. All due respect to GWH, but the man who fitted the windscreen was the Shift Maintenance Manager, and there was no strike in Birmingham at the time. It was a "normal" error.
Think I may have pointed this out elsewhere before, but the interesting thing was that the AAIB blamed systematic failings over the 1-11 too. They found engineers who were proud of their ability to turn planes around quickly, and proud too of the fact their knowledge of the a/c was so brilliant that they didn't need to consult the manuals to get the right sized bolts out of stores, and so on and so forth.

For the AAIB the investigation was UK's first serious look at management and safety "culture" in the context of an accident. Their draft report slammed the systematic failings -- even in 1990 engineers simply didn't have enough hours in the day to finish all the jobs on their plates without cutting corners -- but when BA lawyers got it, all references to systematic failings were replaced with remarks blaming the SMM alone. However, even though he was scapegoated in the report, he was never sacked.

greatwhitehunter
26th Jun 2006, 15:04
Frangible

I stand corrected if the strike was not in force at the line station. I was initially correcting a statement that a 'supervisor' had fitted the window, when it had in fact been fitted by a manager (as you say the shift maintenance manager).

old,not bold
26th Jun 2006, 18:32
I have just come in on this thread, and have read most of it. If my comment has been made already and I missed it, I'm sorry.

If you are concerned about maintenance errors and maintenance standards, there is little hard evidence to support fears that they are worsening; indeed the opposite is true.

But there is a great deal of anecdotal stuff, some of it on this thread, and some of that is well founded. We cannot pretend that there is no problem.

One place to look for a reason is the fact that revenues per flight hour, across the industry, are a tiny fraction of what they used to be in real terms.

It's true that most airlines are infinitely more efficient than before, and aircraft need much less maintenance than before per flight hour/cycle.

But when, having achieved all those economies, you cut the money available for maintenance to the bone because you are charging prices that are well below the real cost of owning and operating the aircraft, no-one should be surprised if standards eventually fall.

It's as simple as that. Not many passengers realise the downside of their cheapo flight, and perhaps it's time to ignore the conventions about talking safety in public, and restore some sanity to fare levels and incomes.

Or do we wait for the smoking hole, in the traditional way?

Joetom
26th Jun 2006, 21:40
Old, not bold.
.
Think your last comment is the way it will go.
.
Aircraft require Pilots and Cabin Crew to operate and we can all see that, other parts of the operation like Maint can be reduced to a very low standard to save money, an old saying, "if you think Safety costs to much, try having an accident"???:ugh:

itwilldoatrip
27th Jun 2006, 09:30
OLD,NOT,BOLD
Hit the nail on the head,this is exactly what we are fighting for. The bean counter's want to get rid of the easiest option until!!!!

Joetom
29th Jun 2006, 22:21
Still not much news as to how many staff know this is going on....Will we hav to wait until the AAIB make the report puplic.:= := :=

Bus429
30th Jun 2006, 09:32
Hi Joetom,
Why would the AAIB be investigating this? I think this is an issue for the "Competent Authority".

itwilldoatrip
30th Jun 2006, 11:14
Surely Bus this is a level 1 finding. Manager's on a dispensation abusing the priviledge given to them. On BA's addmission all aircraft were returned to the hanger and work re certified, this alone means something went on. Also BA QA would have had to notify the CAA on two fronts, the non compliance of several (?) aircraft to the AMP and the fact of the illegal stamping which caused this non compliance.
Also cant tell me that the CAA bods are not aware of this through this site. Perhaps with all the nice weather they are unable to see through the sunnies.
:ok:

Bus429
30th Jun 2006, 14:07
This sort of thing is not within the remit of the AAIB - no accident has occurred.
Is the UK CAA investigating this? Has BA tracked down every "certification" made by proxy and re-inspected the task? :suspect:

itwilldoatrip
30th Jun 2006, 17:18
Bus
Doesn't matter. The AMP was not followed which compromised the C of A. Go back to basics.
This should have been reported by the QAM. Especially if several aircraft were affected as reported on Airmech but we are talking about Big Airway's. Another thing is the dispensation from the CAA was abused. Unhappy as the QAM might feel his duty is to report. What he say's in the report is subject to conjecture but given the replies on here and airmech the CAA are bound to investigate.
Arn't they!!!!!!
Also even without the publicity should be picked up on the audit.
:ugh:

Krystal n chips
30th Jun 2006, 17:49
Bus
Also even without the publicity should be picked up on the audit.
:ugh:

It would be interesting to learn when the last CAA and / or internal audit was in relation to this event and indeed any others that may now come to the surface.

Do I assume however, that it was actually BA's quality ( euphimism here ) dept that reported the events to the CAA or were they informed by other sources ?. Just wondering as public admissions of guilt are not one of the most obvious features of BA's engineering management.

Bus429
30th Jun 2006, 19:44
Perhaps Joetom didn't mean to refer to AAIB. This sort of incident is not within the AAIB's remit - it is up to the CAA.
The following is an extract from the AAIB's website:

Purpose
"To improve aviation safety by determining the causes of accidents and serious incidents and making Safety Recommendations to prevent accidents in the future."

Chief Inspector

In carrying out our purpose we will strive to:

* respond quickly to air accidents and serious incidents and lead and manage the accident investigation team while ensuring their safety at the accident location.
* conduct thorough, independent, impartial and timely investigations into air accidents and serious incidents.
* produce clearly written, thorough and concise reports with well-founded analysis and conclusions, that explain the circumstances and causes of accidents and serious incidents, without attributing blame.
* ensure compliance with ICAO Annex 13 and UK statutory obligations for the investigation of air accidents.
* provide assistance and expertise to the international air accident community to improve aviation safety globally.
* improve aviation safety in general by education and promulgating the lessons learnt from accident investigations.
* treat the survivors and the relatives of victims of air accidents sympathetically and help them to understand ‘what happened’ and what is being done to prevent similar accidents in the future.
* maintain and develop excellence in our people and provide a fulfilling environment in which to work

itwilldoatrip
4th Jul 2006, 02:38
Bus
As an excec member of ALAE any more news on this. Seems to have gone quiet

BOAC73
4th Jul 2006, 17:17
Who has posted here works for BA engineering?
All this talk of smoking holes.....and all of you prepared to do sod all except....I told you so.
I'd like to sort out the idiots , time wasters and hidden agenda merchants from the people who are actually in a position to make change happen ( and NO I don't agree with the smoking hole theory). That's not to say everything in the garden is rosy either.
B73

Krystal n chips
4th Jul 2006, 22:02
Who has posted here works for BA engineering?


Thus making the inevitable retribution so much easier of course. Irrespective of course, of the validity of the statements which may be conveniently ignored as previously.


All this talk of smoking holes.....and all of you prepared to do sod all except....I told you so.


Actually, the talk is of the prevention before it happens and the ways to alleviate this---such as complying with statutory legislation for example. This minor detail seems to have been lacking within the organisation would you not say---or is it that the events that have occurred were just unfortunate in the proximity and repetition of their timing ?


I'd like to sort out the idiots , time wasters and hidden agenda merchants from the people who are actually in a position to make change happen


That's a very interesting and somewhat denegratory collective assessment of people who have contributed to this thread, albeit in a factual manner based on experience which is seemingly an anathema to you in that any form of subjective or objective commentary concerning the failings of BA engineering provokes a response which, one might almost assume, was shall we say, being dictated to the writer. I am sure this is not the case of course and that your views are based entirely on your own perceptions as indeed are the responses of of those of us who have chosen to contribute with---factual commentary.
And of course, once you have sorted out the wheat from the chaff as it were, then again it makes life so much easier to er, "bring pressure to bear" as it were does it not?.


Many thanks however, for inadvertantly exemplifying the issue of the prevalent culture as discussed previously.


That's not to say everything in the garden is rosy either.


One of the more classical examples of litotes I would venture to suggest?.
B73
The facts of the matter are quite simple really B73. The ANO was contravened and hence the law was broken as a result. Would you feel safe travelling with any organisation----irrespective of the mode of transport----who, despite innumerable warnings and incidents, seemingly decline to ignore these?.

BOAC73
5th Jul 2006, 00:17
......and the answer to my first question is?
There is a new CAA regional Head Surveyor coming to visit BA soon. It presents a good opportunity for those of us who are concerned about the state of BA engineering to get our issues aired.
So, I ask again, who, from the posters on this thread is from BA engineering?
What are your concerns...and please let them be supported by facts.
That puts you out on a limb eh K&N?
B73.

Joetom
5th Jul 2006, 00:42
BOAC73,
.
Think you will find hole in the ground(headstone maint as the FAA call it)is alive and well, think present price is about 3M Dollars PP.
.
It's used all over the world.
.
Trick is to be ahead of the game, get close and risk fingers being burnt, am sure the bean counters have the numbers.
.
:ugh: :ugh:

BOAC73
5th Jul 2006, 00:54
Not in my bloody world it certainly is not.
Now sod off and get some real aircraft engineering experience under your belt.
Then you can pontificate on forums such as this.
B73.

itwilldoatrip
5th Jul 2006, 10:08
BOAC
Think you have lost the plot. This thread is about illegallity in our profession especially given the fight we have on with E.A.S.A. over the threat to withdraw our licence and livelihood. You dont have to be in BA to post here, do you!!

Good news that you are to meet the new Head Surveyor and you are to bring this matter up and hopefully other problems within BA and the industry. Think you will be in a majority of one on this one given the recognition the A.L.A.E. has had and your'e rants here that no one on this thread is actually from BA. Still we wait eagerly the result of your'e one to one meeting.

Your'e management is winning the divide and conquer battle 'old boy'

:ok:

MikeGodsell
5th Jul 2006, 16:38
Hmmn..

Bring back flight engineers I say!

Even in my day any aeroplane leaving main base, and particularly coming out from maintenance was suspect. Since I was going to be flying in it, my checks were thorough. Sadly it was not unusual to find basic defects...panels unsecured or missing, a wrench in a thrust reverser door, avionics not operating. Perhaps the ground engineers knew that the E/O would have eyes like a hawk, and relied on his final checks of the aircraft servicability.

Fly by wire and glass cockpits are all very well, but computers don't do a flight engineers walkaround!

:hmm:

Joetom
5th Jul 2006, 18:25
Mikegodsell,
.
Not sure about Flt Engineers.
.
But with no Ground Engineers during Aircraft transit/departures and left to Pilots to do inspection/checks, am sure many aircraft depart when they should be fixed, Pilots put in an awkard position during this type of operation.
.
Good luck to all the Pilots in this position.:eek: :eek: :eek:

Krystal n chips
5th Jul 2006, 18:48
......and the answer to my first question is?
There is a new CAA regional Head Surveyor coming to visit BA soon. It presents a good opportunity for those of us who are concerned about the state of BA engineering to get our issues aired.
So, I ask again, who, from the posters on this thread is from BA engineering?
What are your concerns...and please let them be supported by facts.
That puts you out on a limb eh K&N?
B73.

Actually, the only person out on limb here B73, should you proceed with your proposed conversation, is your goodself.

As for me, well all my posts have been based on fact.

Oh, and it's K n C please note. Hope you pay more attention to detail during your inspections ;)

BOAC73
6th Jul 2006, 01:14
I wonder, given that you are not a BA employee, just how you can prove the crap you have posted about BA so far.
Politics,and air safety do not make good bedfellows. Fortunately at BA there are many LAE's like me who turn up every day with the sole intention of doing a good job.
Oh, and by the way, many Captains and First Officers turn up for work every day to fly the machines that I and others certify as serviceable.
B73

Sunfish
6th Jul 2006, 02:11
Its not about well intentioned LAME's turning up for work. It's about organisational culture and also its about "regulatory capture" where the regulator is in effect 'captured" by those he regulates, so as to make the enforcement of the regulations problematic. The solution to the aforementioned problems looks something like this........


July 2009

AAP

HEADS CONTINUE TO ROLL AT REGULATORS AND AIRlLINES.

The Chief Executive and Deputy Chief Executive of the civil aviation authority resigned today in the wake of last weeks release of the report by Lord Sunfish (The Sunfish Report) into a series of four European air crashes involving five airlines in the period July 2008 - September 2008. The resignations continue a wave of changes at the airlines and regulators involved aimed at buttressing the travelling public's waining faith in the safety of air travel as well as the catastrophic decline in airline share prices.

In his report Lord Sunfish found that; "the cause of all four accidents is a deadly troika - reduction in safety margins in both engineering and operational terms, corporate cultures at variance with safe operating procedures, and obvious regulatory capture of those who were supposed to police the regulations".

The worst of the crashes, involving a mid air collision over Westminster by an A380 and B747, was caused by inattentive flight crew in the A380 who were attempting to deal with an emergency landing gear extension system failure while at exactly the same time the B747 was dealing with a leading edge flap extension failure indication and an electrical bus failure that rendered their TCAS system unuseable. Another European accident involved structural failure of an engine pylon. The causes of the third and fourth were judged to be the inability of fatigued pilots to deal with in flight emergencies, in one case an engine failure and the other pressurisation problems.

Lord Sunfish found a consistent pattern in all four accidents that involved engineers too pressured by management to adeqautely service aircraft, flight crew who were unduly stressed by the rosters and hours they had been flying and a series of regulators who turned a blind eye to the failings of the airlines involved.

"Of particular repugnance to, me" Lord Sunfish said "is the case of the suicide of Mr. B, an engineer who reported his airline's lethal maintenance practices to his regulator. The regulator disclosed this information to the airline which them proceeded to treat Mr. B in a most punitive and underhand manner. I hope that B's estate is successful in their lawsuit."

Sweeping changes continue across European skies. Already mandated are changes to pilots rosters and working hours to preclude the possibility of fatigue. Legislation requiring that only certified trained engineers may maintain aircraft, the complete separation of financial and operational controls within airlines, a europe wide confidential reporting system and a european union aviation inspectorate charged with performing random audits and investigating complaints.

"We knew it was going to happen" said an engineer speaking anonymously, "every where you looked there was corner cutting, but anyone who said anything was punished."

A pilot speaking under the same condition agreed "We knew we were cutting it fine, we always made the same joke about our problems - the light came on just after takeoff, so we continued to our destination". "With the new rosters I can finally get to know my family and not collapse in a heap every night."

A former inspector with the aviation authority said " Its a pity this had to happen before people woke up. I guess what lulled us to sleep was the way that the standards were nibbled away very slowly until we were routinely allowing practices to continue that we would never allowed even ten years ago."

American, Asian and Australian regulators are also believed to be reviewing their oversight of the aviation industry in the wake of the reports findings.

yamaha
6th Jul 2006, 11:27
At last, someone who is able to see the whole picture but more importantly understand the consequences of continuing down this current path.
Sunfish excellent post. I do however suspect too many are already dozing.

itwilldoatrip
7th Jul 2006, 16:38
Yamaha me to suprised at the dozing.
With what is going on and this thread and the other about EASA trying to get rid of us engineers am amazed at the lack of support from our collegues siting in the seats at the front.
Maybe it will take the smoking hole (and I hope it doesn't happen) to wake people up. The incident in GLA is not an isolated one, there are plenty of incidents from around the world being documented by the ALAE for the back pocket to be produced when required.
The dozing also seems to eminate from the CAA as well but should we be suprised :ugh:

Mick Stability
7th Jul 2006, 17:42
I'm afraid the prospect of a visit by the CAA is likely to encourage the macho f**wits who think that being on the precipice of prosecution means they're running lean.

We are riven with these idiots, many of who are way out of their depth, ill equipped with the knowledge and experience to discharge their roles competently, and desperate to impress Willy O'Leary and his mates by showing how hard they are.

For the first time in many years, I have serious doubts about the regulatory framework in this once great company. Just look who we reinstalled in Flight Ops after our latest 'management cull which resulted in just one departure, the recoronation of the worst offenders, and three new management trees.

God help us all.

HOVIS
7th Jul 2006, 22:01
Excellent post Sunfish.:ok:

It seems odd that with all this going on BA have just refused to formally recognise the ALAE as the body to represent Licensed Engineers, even though there are enough members of ALAE within BA to make it legally a requirement.

What are they (BA) afraid of?

I would have thought that at the moment BA could use an alliance with a professional association to improve it's tarnished image.:ugh:

TURIN
15th Jul 2006, 13:29
Wrong again Hovis,

BA in it's infinite wisdom have decided to make all their licenced engineers into managers on performance related pay. I kid you not. Letters arrived this morning informing all and sundry that LAEs have to now apply to become managers or they will lose £3000 a year.:mad:

That should sort the problem then.:mad: :ugh:

greatwhitehunter
15th Jul 2006, 14:27
I would advise any BA pilots to take careful note of the fact that the licenced engineers responsible for your safety are to be put on performance related pay. Do you consider this will lead to an improvement in your safety?

Krystal n chips
16th Jul 2006, 09:29
Now why should the expression "Conflict of Interest" spring to mind here ?---and does this mean that all LAE's will now be part of the aberration known as TMG grades----many of whom are complicit in their "interpretation" of the regulatory requirements and hence the origins of many of the comments posted here.

How though, will this promotion---if such it can be called---help alleviate the culture problems---given that, in my humble opinion based on my experiences of said culture, the decision to go down this route neatly abrogates responsibility by BA Engineering management and will only serve to exacerbate the problems that already and so evidently exist.

Bus429
16th Jul 2006, 10:47
A statistic bandied about in the late 1990s - and still used in Human Factors training for maintenance staff - is the "one a week by 2010". While I very much doubt we will reach that sort of figure, the "unrocked boat" mindset could lead managers and staff to think all is OK. That we are subject to commercial pressures is undeniable; several fellow maintenance engineers have told me that they are sometimes actively discouraged from using procedures, particularly towards the end of a maintenance check.
The Error Iceberg indicates - and similar statstics were quoted in the AAIB report concerning the loss of the left number one window from a BA 1-11 - that for every 1 accident (the tip of the iceberg), we have 10 incidents, 30 reportable occurrences and 600 near misses (incidents or accidents that did not occur because the causal chain was broken).
I suspect that well-designed modern aircraft with redundant systems lend us a false sense of security. Just remember Murphy' Law...
BTW, Sunfish, excellent post.

itwilldoatrip
17th Jul 2006, 07:19
Bus very true but isnt this what we are fighting against. How many of us can straight off the top of you're head recall some incidents which in their own way do not constitute a major worry but at some time will in fact line up hole's on the swiss cheese. Also how many can recall the final hours on a check (hanger or line) when the pandemonium starts because someone wants the plane early or there is to much work to be done in the time remaining. Another pressure is how many times have you had to kick the flight crew off the flight deck because without any though or respect they assume all is ok and when you ask politely why they are sitting on an unserviceable aeroplane they get the axxe ache and its all you're fault of course.

You're perfectly correct when you say about modern a/c having redundancy built in and a false sense of security. Isn't the E.A.S.A. falling into this trap also. May I suggest you contact them for one of your HF course's then the penny may drop. Perhaps if we stop doing resets and more component changes a trend may develop for the bean counter's our way. Trouble is Airbus philosophy is reset test ok sign it off.

With reference to the BA LAE's being made manager grade isnt that the start of this thread in that a BA manager was working under dispensation from the CAA with regards to signing off a/c, abused this position and the rest is history. Does this mean now that manager's (read LAE's as well) will now have their licences back and keep signing rights which goes against all theory of conflict of interest with manager grades .

PAXboy
17th Jul 2006, 12:42
With regards to Performance Related Pay: In my experience (IT) this has been used to reduce staff costs. Through working in Telecommunications for 27 years in a very wide span of companies (local govt to multi-national plc) I have seen this trend that is done to 'incentivise' and 'empower' :rolleyes: staff but that has exactly the opposite effect! Staff find that they have less room to manoeuvre and that the mgmt always finds ways to show that, despite the PRP, their wages go DOWN.

I was 'amused' to see this replicated in another business (unrelated to airlines). The staff told me that they were on PRP and had been told that throughput of the company was down, so they did not get a bonus. I then showed them statistics in a published journal that showed the opposite - their output was slightly increased on the previous year. They were not amused.

So, PRP is but one more mechanism to give the appearance of something good that is actually the reverse.

Sunfish well done. Keep a copy of that, because you will be able to show it to your friends - and probably not too far in teh future. The only thing proven to stop human beings doing silly things to make money, is when other human beings die.

Beanbag
17th Jul 2006, 13:04
PRP is one thing, but also don't overlook the implication of the change to Manager status: (iirc) managers are outside the scope of the EU Working Time Directive, which means that the employer isn't constrained by the 48 hour week legislation.

green granite
17th Jul 2006, 14:48
The only thing proven to stop human beings doing silly things to make money, is when other human beings die.

Yes, but only if it looks as though they might get blamed otherwise the "not my fault" syndrome kicks in and they carry on as before :(

Joetom
18th Jul 2006, 22:48
Sunfish, a very nice post, keep it up:ugh: :ugh: