View Full Version : Conflict between old and young pilots in SAS

25th Aug 2008, 06:33
According to Full SAS-fight i cockpit : Dagsavisen (http://www.dagsavisen.no/innenriks/article365352.ece), every fifth SAS pilot (160 out of 800) says that they are bullied by colleagues.

Only 4 out of 10 have reported the problem, and less than half of those who did feels they are taken seriously. 8 out of 10 say that reporting the problem didn't lead to improvements.

Luftfartstilsynet (Civil Aviation Authority in Norway) says in a secret report that this is mostly due to conflicts between young and older pilots. The source of the conflict is apparently from the increase in retirement age from 60 to 65 by ICAO in march 2006. It has caused many young pilots to declare themselves non fit for fight and refuse to fly with their elder colleagues just before departure. Weak economy and heavy competition has done nothing to improve the situation, and the pilots got a message just before the weekend that 110 pilots would have to loose their jobs.

The report is five months old and an inspection leader at Luftfartstilsynet says that nothing has improved since then, which is causing concerns about security in the company.

25th Aug 2008, 08:44
I make no pretence at adding to the quality of this debate: I merely state "Bloody diddums! Welcome to the real world."

25th Aug 2008, 08:47
Summer tabloid stuff?. We are seeing lots of informative terrorism over here these days.

Capt Claret
25th Aug 2008, 09:18
Well I think it's the younger pilots fault. If they weren't sitting there in the right hand seat, hogging the positions of even younger people who've just paid a fortune to obtain a pilot's licence, then these even younger people would get a fair go.

All these young F/Os should lead by example, and show how altruistic they can be by resigning, just to give those further down the ladder a leg up. :ugh:

I've said on other posts on this topic, I've worked bloody hard to get where I am and I'm not giving it up just because some selfish snot-nose kid thinks s/he deserves the position more than I do. :mad:

25th Aug 2008, 09:30
Ah yes, but are you sure it's the younger pilots complaining about being bullied?

I thought it was mainly the older "seat-hogging" pilots who were whining about being "bullied" by the younger ones wanting their command...

In which case this is about leadership culture, and captains being unable to assert their role... and I would have to say "If you can't stand the heat, retire from the kitchen..."

(BTW, I'm very much for retirement age 65, no problem with it, AS LONG AS YOU STILL CUT THE MUSTARD..):ok:

25th Aug 2008, 09:36
Just some facts.

Retirement age by union agreement is 60 with full pension.

There are no young pilots in SAS average age in cockpit is 53

25th Aug 2008, 09:37
I thought good old CRM was supposed to cure this sort of thing...
Whatever happened to teaching by example and learning from experience?

25th Aug 2008, 10:31
There are no young pilots in SAS average age in cockpit is 53

Company wide ?

WOW !!!

25th Aug 2008, 10:47
What every young pilot fails to see that they, one day sooner or later; become an old captain. That is when they face the same attitude from the new young pilots. That's life, learn to live with it.

25th Aug 2008, 10:49
To quote more from the original article:

Some of the methodes used is social lockouts, verbal onesided quarrels, younger pilots declaring "non fit for flight" and refusing to fly with elder colleagues, signs with degrading texts in crewrooms, and degrading text on internal pilot bulletin boards (I assume they didn't mean this one? :confused: ).

I'm not sure who is on the "receiving" end of the bullying, it wasn't entirely clear in the article. Maybe both sides are.

ray cosmic
25th Aug 2008, 11:06
I understand most "younger" pilots are unhappy, because the older ones continue flying instead of enjoying their CWA agreed retirement age. At the same time I understand there will be lay-offs, so is it maybe the younger ones being the first to go?
Now if the older ones would retire, no lay-offs are needed (?). Ah well. Playing it on the person is no matter what not the way to go.

25th Aug 2008, 11:59
"their CWA agreed retirement age."

The majority of pilots will go at their agreed age, they have long planned for it. A few will stay on and are unlikely to effect the promotion of FOs as there are, in any airline, people who leave before their time is up.

Not sure who produced that bit about, "every fifth SAS pilot (160 out of 800) says that they are bullied by colleagues". But it does come across as a bit of union orchestrated bullshit. Remember that the most active part of any pilots union in this day and age is the Senior FO/FO sector, these are people who came into aviation as a viable financial option but not as a love or a vocation and now want out as soon as possible on the highest pension going.

25th Aug 2008, 12:06
"every fifth SAS pilot (160 out of 800) says that they are bullied by colleagues" comes from a survey.

25th Aug 2008, 12:45
The majority of pilots will go at their agreed age, they have long planned for it.

We thought that too, at Fedex.

The reality is, 75% of pilots have continued on past 60.

25th Aug 2008, 13:15
"every fifth SAS pilot (160 out of 800) says that they are bullied by colleagues" comes from a survey.

And any survey can be manipulated, depending on who runs it, need to know a lot more about such a survey before it becomes believable.

"The reality is, 75% of pilots have continued on past 60." and given the way pension funds have been swallowed up I'm not surprised, though I don't imagine that is the case at FedEx? I would have thought that continued expansion would have well outnumbered any one extending beyond age sixty?

25th Aug 2008, 13:23
As each senior Captain approaches age sixty, he is retired, and the senior First Officers move up in turn (to enable more junior pilots to be retained)...and each senior First Officer (now a Captain) as well as the more junior pilots (now retained) provide an additional financial assessment, to then be forwarded monthly, to those now retired senior pilots....so they can afford to stay retired...and not muck up the program (as perceived by the junior pilots).

IE: the check is in the mail.

25th Aug 2008, 14:01
Fedex has been contracting the fleet slightly in the last year or so.

Combined with the replacement of 3-man aircraft (727, DC10) with 2-man aircraft (757, MD10) and the change to the regulatory age, we are not too far away from furloughing, if the winter "peak" isn't a big one.

Our pension fund is strong. But the green-eyed monster has gripped many in the senior ranks. I have flown with many a captain who could walk out with a six-figure yearly pension who are staying on - "With my sick leave and vacation, it's the best part-time job in the world!"

Let me shuck this one down to the cob: there is a group of pilots in the world who will get five more years of flying as captain. Those who came before didn't get it. Those that come after won't get it (they get five more years of waiting for the PIC job). The trains may still run down the tracks, but don't expect alot of holding hands and singing "Kumbaya".....

Major Attack
25th Aug 2008, 15:04
Let get things right:

The article (and similar in other news outlets in Scandinavia) refers to relations within SAS Norway (formerly Braatens SAFE) and is not company wide.


25th Aug 2008, 16:59
They probably don't like to 'retire' early as there is little else to do in Norway.

25th Aug 2008, 21:08
HOT DOG, you f... idiot !

You just don't get it, do you ?!

Live to work or work to live....Your choice.

I've have already made mine, and so have the rest of the SAS pilots. Enjoy at least a little of your life, without working.
Now, unfortunately, some selfish clowns sees the possiblity of making a little extra money since they have no other life anyway, and thus changing the careerpath of everyone else below them senioritywise.
All because a nonsense EU law suddenly makes it possible, in the holy name of age discremination. What a complete joke.
It has ALWAYS been agreed on (union/company) that you leave when you are 60. That's it. GET OUT !

Good old EU....The average angle of a cucumber, age discremination - I wonder what's next for them ?!


25th Aug 2008, 21:08
'BYALPHAINDIA', you have no idea what you're talking about. If you are bored in Norway, then just don't go there. Quite simple. Admittedly, Norwegian tv is by far the most boring I've ever seen - but this does not imply that its inhabitants are the same. And: who's watching tv anyway...?

Another thing has crossed my mind though. What if the whole thing is made up by the management of SAS and has no truth in it whatsoever? Just think about it: older pilots are usually higher up the seniority ladder and have higher salaries. So if they can get rid of some of them, SAS saves money, right? Wouldn't surprise me at all...

25th Aug 2008, 21:27
Having industrial agreements that force people to retire at a given age is so out dated.

For once I agree with part of EU legislation, forcing people to retire at a given age is ageist!!

It is tantamount to not giving somebody a job because they are too old, which can not be used as a valid reason. This is not PC bull, but a sound ethos.

OK so FOs will have to wait a bit longer for their commands but they will in turn get longer careers themselves.

SK900, I am afraid that you are the outdated idiot round here.

It has ALWAYS been agreed on (union/company) that you leave when you are 60. That's it. GET OUT !

That is such old fashioned, almost communist, militant rubbish!

25th Aug 2008, 22:13
Ironic considering Norway is not actually an EU member state but is fact an EEA EFTA member.

Norway and the European Union (Delegation site) (http://www.eu-norway.org/eu/norway+and+the+eu.htm)

Through the EEA-Agreement Norway and the other EEA EFTA States have taken on the obligation to implement all EU legislation relevant to the functioning of the internal market. The EEA Committee takes the decision on whether new Community legislation is of EEA-relevance, with joint participation by the EU Commission and the EEA EFTA Member States. Thereafter, it is up to the national parliaments and legislators to ensure the national implementation. The EEA Agreement also ensures the EEA EFTA States some access to the preparatory work on new EU legislation on expert level (when prepared by the Commission).

It's the best compromise, the chance to pick and choose which bits of EU regulation are appropriate to be implemented in Norway :)

25th Aug 2008, 22:37
I have to agree with 411A.

Most of these captains work in Sweden and they get both pension and salary for 5 years, at the same time as the company is planning to kick 110 FO:s out on the street. The "waiting 5 years longer for upgrade" is just a tiny inconvinience compared.

Also the collective agreement will come under pressure from the company because of many not retiring at 60. In the future this will mean that the now young pilots will have no possibility of retirement at 60 and that it will take 5 years longer to earn a full pension.

Todays captains have a choice and by choosing to stay on after 60 they deny their younger colleagues the same choice when they turn 60.

fmgc wrote:
"OK so FOs will have to wait a bit longer for their commands but they will in turn get longer careers themselves."
They don´t want longer careers (from about 25 to 60 i enough), they want to keep their jobs.

26th Aug 2008, 00:44
How about this...?
As each senior Captain approaches age sixty, he is retired, and the senior First Officers move up in turn (to enable more junior pilots to be retained)...and each senior First Officer (now a Captain) as well as the more junior pilots (now retained) provide an additional financial assessment, to then be forwarded monthly, to those now retired senior pilots....so they can afford to stay retired...and not muck up the program (as perceived by the junior pilots).

IE: the check is in the mail.

I like this suggestion, but how about another.........SAS should employ darkies ( like my goodself ), brownies, yellowies from the third world and see how far the bullying will get to.

26th Aug 2008, 02:18
'BYALPHAINDIA', you have no idea what you're talking about. If you are bored in Norway, then just don't go there. Quite simple. Admittedly, Norwegian tv is by far the most boring I've ever seen - but this does not imply that its inhabitants are the same. And: who's watching tv anyway...?

okay, Ill remember that.:ugh::rolleyes:

26th Aug 2008, 03:05
SK900, what a great first post. I think most people here have made up their mind who the f... idiot is.:rolleyes:

26th Aug 2008, 06:15
I thought the redundancies announced the other week were mainly voluntary, anyone shed some light on this. Read that 18 aircraft were being removed total redundancies 2500 but spread across the group?

last time this happened Wideroe were under obligation to take on pilots made redundant from SK, but the business relationship was different. Could WF help out this time or are they well and truly part of the group now and so cannot help?

26th Aug 2008, 06:41
Surely if a pilot aged 60 plus can perform the tasks required under international regulations then they should be allowed to do so.

In those circumstances the younger pilots have nothing legitimately to complain about.

26th Aug 2008, 08:12
Manrow you missed the point completely, now go back to your rocking chair on the porch. Oh I forgot, before you do, have a look at post # 26 pretty much sums it up. I would just like to add for your clarification that the 60+ captains are taking home a six figure salary in pound sterling + a six figure pension, whilst the "young F/O" in his forties with close to 10 years in the company gets the boot, I`m sure he`s not dependent on his five figure salary to make ends meet.
Enjoy your tea and biscuits.


26th Aug 2008, 08:32

as suggested from my rocking chair I have read post 26, and appreciate the points made. But where were you all when this agreement was reached? Was it merely imposed by management or EU regs for that matter?

26th Aug 2008, 08:37
Such a sensitive issue. Before my tuppen'th, I'd like to point out that I am not involved.

I am of the opinion that when the 60+s started they knew that they were going to retire at 55-60 and their pensions reflect that. In effect they signed a time limited contract expiring on their 60th birthday.

SAS allowed them to continue after their 60th when the legal requirement to retire was dropped but only on condition of route network, full-time etc.

Then they sue the company for age discrimination because they were only allowed to work full-time and are awarded compensation as if all the days they would have been off were bought (double time?) by the company. I wonder how many actually did apply for part time.

Bearing in mind that they are on salaries the likes of which we will probably never see again, it would be very easy to suggest that it is pure greed and ego which drives them.

I make no judgement either way.

26th Aug 2008, 08:39

Appels and appels please!

I do understand that my American friends see a need to continue beyond age 60. I probably would to if I had seen my pension plan being raped my criminal management backed by a corrupt goverment, but such is not the case at SAS!
A SAS CAP, having served 30 yrs. can leave with a pension in the neighbourhood of 150K $, variing a bit depending on wich Scandinavian country Your plan is set up in.
Some of the pioners in the +60 game managed to get 150K pension + 200K pay for several years, when that got stopped they sued the company still wanting their pension payments!
Now a majority continues past 60 with different excuses but never men enough to state the real reason: I do not give a S... about my colleages and I want more money for ME ME ME ME!
Here we have a group fortunate enough to have been with SAS during the golden Years, working 400h/year, protected by one of the best unions and now they see fit to turn around and shaft everybody else including the union that protected their lifestyle all these year, all in the name of ME ME ME ME!
Those induviduals sees this vindow of oppertunity as their right, because EU made legislation to secure a stable workforce and less strain on national pension systems, funny thing though our pension is almost 100% selffunded, this law was never ment for us!
Long term implications are even worse, SAS will now push for 65 as mandatory retirement age, lessening their pension bill by 30% at least and I will have to work my behind of till 65. Thank You no!

Now get out of my seat and go home and enjoy life!


26th Aug 2008, 08:45
First of all this discussion does not belong in this forum if we are talking SAS specific - its an internal matter between SAS pilot unions and SAS management.

Secondly there is absolutely nothing wrong in continuing piloting A/C for as long as legislation permits (even as a CDR) if you want to, not if you have to.... As a wise man once said "It's to late before you know it".

And by the way norwegian CAA denied yesterday that they have any concerns regarding flightsafety in SAS Norway.

It seems that KLM and Lufthansa have no problems in retirering their CDR's early - shame on them....

26th Aug 2008, 09:11
I can't believe what I am hearing here, you can not force people to retire early.


It is as bad as racism or sexism!

Unfortunately there will be some that are upset as there is a transition to the increased retirement age.

In the UK and I guess most of Europe the rules have been changed and all the younger pilots have taken it on the chin as it is better for the "Greater Good". Why are you different in SAS Norway to the rest of the world?

26th Aug 2008, 09:12
The old captains have enjoyed the benefits of the collective agreement. In that agreement it states that the employment is automatically terminated when the pilot reaches 60 years of age (it isn´t a surprise for them). I find it immoral that they now decide to disregard that point in the agreement just to make more money, even when it will cause younger colleagues to lose their job.

It might be according to the law but it certainly isn´t morally right.

Read post #34 and #35 again.

26th Aug 2008, 09:23
"Upset" hardly describes the feeling when you lose your job because someone won´t follow the collective agreement and retire at 60 and instead continues with both pension and salary at your cost!!!

If the airlines were expanding it wouldn´t be a problem but now it is.

26th Aug 2008, 09:28

after reading your explanations I understand the situation much better, and am inclined to agree with you.

26th Aug 2008, 09:35
It all depends on how you view your job. If you are itching to retire at 55 or 60 to be able to "enjoy" life, aviation was probably the wrong choice for you. I retired at age 65, not because of the money but because aviation for me, was not a job but a vocation. I have seen this argument many times before and I know many of my ex colleauges who were very much against extended retirement age. They are now fighting to stay on till age 65.

26th Aug 2008, 09:41
SK900 - what a classic example of a foot stomping, i;m going to hold my breath until I get what I want, immature tantrum more commonly exibited by 2 year olds in a supermarket. Its simply breathtaking. If my kids acted that way I would tan their backsides.

Its astonishing to see see the behavior of (some) generation x's, my generation. Perhaps you would prefer all the old farts in our community to actually die, stops them stealing oxygen that is so rightfullly the deserve of younger folk.

Be happy with the fact that you are IN a jet, I've been in genaral aviation for 19 years and 3,000 hrs of flogging around in all sorts of crap senecas, chieftains, barons etc and I'm yet to crack my first jet job. These upstart young blokes who go straight from flight school to jet FO just dont know how tough it is for the rest of.

How dare anyone bitch and moan about someone else not retiring so they can further their own careers. It's a discusting and vile attitude that sems to have pervaded the modern world.

26th Aug 2008, 09:42
In germany the situation is a bit different. Union-company contracts are treated as law within the company and can supersede national laws. So if the union contract states that you can leave work between 55 and 60 with a company-wide average of 58 but certainly not later than reaching 60 you have to leave at that age. A couple captains tried in front of courts in view of the new EU legislation and lost, the agreement still stands and you can not work longer than 60 at lufthansa (btw, the only company over here that has that kind of agreement). There are other companies to take on those retirees and are happy to have them for another five years.

Flying Guy
26th Aug 2008, 10:07
You summed up my reaction to that immature twit perfectly.

26th Aug 2008, 10:27
What an interesting and testy thread. All comments appear to negate one thing. An individuals right to work until they wish, regardless of EU rules or policy. All the young and hungry F/O'S have the choice to walk if they are not happy with that companies position (SAS). Similarly the Seniors have the right to work until THEY decide they want to retire. This is basic stuff. Specific to Spanair/SAS, my colleague, Captain 40 ish, tells me that he is actually fed up with the massive rostering at the company, 90 hours per month, no time for any other 'life'. He could not wait to move/retire from this organisation.

26th Aug 2008, 10:57
normorecatering and others

You cannot compare these FOs with the likes at ryan or somewhere else where they go from flight school to self-funded 737-rating. These guys were picked as top notch in Scandinavia and are (in theory) the most well educated pilots we have up north. And as far as I know they havent recruited any new pilots since 2001, correct me if Im wrong? So this talk about young FOs is very misleading. In any other company the majority of these guys would have been captains many years ago.

26th Aug 2008, 12:52
Oh purlease, my god, what a load of drivel...........most higly educated, top notch, yada yada yada.....bah humbug. For gods sake, we're talking about bloody aeroplane drivers, not nobel prize winners who are finding cures for cancer or saving the world. Jeez some people need a reality check.

Last year, i attended a dinner at a conference in Melbourne with my GF who is a scientist, specialising in genetics and is completing a Phd. At the dinner, there were Nobel lauriets, you could say the cream of the worlds intelectual crop, but you would not know it by talking to them. Unasuming, genteel and most seemed to be embarressed about the accolades bestowed apon them. None the less, there was a quiet pride amonst them in what they do, but no boasting, no egos.

Me, a humble pilot felt privaliged to be merely in their presence.

26th Aug 2008, 13:10
Most satisfying to read all the selfish little control freaks fulminating. :E
Met them at school, RAF, airlines but much less so in shipyards and the Merchant Navy; perhaps because a smack in the chops often offends, a course of action not available to a British Officer or (usually) airline pilot.

26th Aug 2008, 13:38
Just because somebody has another source of wealth, be it pension or other, you can't expect them to be the first to go if there are redundancies! Life doesn't work that way.

In the UK if somebody was forced to retire at 60 they could take the Company to a tribunal and would win. The Company would then be forced to keep everybody on until they are 65 anyway.

I guess that it is similar in Norway, but I don't know.

26th Aug 2008, 13:48

FYI Im not one of them. And surely there are different levels of experience/knowledge among pilots in different airlines. Its just plain facts that some airlines have a higher requirement when hiring people than others.
Anywho... Before this leads away from the thread, what I wanted to say was that you probably didnt understand that the youngsters are not so young and that they dont have 1501TT, trained in a private school with a privately funded 738 rating. So I disagree that these guys are whiny brats, but highly experienced and well trained pilots that in any other company would be commanders by now.

Peace out;)

26th Aug 2008, 14:33
In the UK, we have had a raft of EC legislation overrule ALL national legislation

And frankly, its ridiculous.

Our politicians are just too ignorant to know what to and what not to concede...

26th Aug 2008, 14:58
It's a discusting and vile attitude that sems to have pervaded the modern world.

The captains of today benefitted from the Age 60 rule their entire careers. Because of it, they were hired earlier, upgraded earlier, and flew widebodies earlier.

When the rule no longer suited them, they lobbied successfully to have it changed. Against the vote of the majority of my union, by the way.

You can revel in your gift from above, but spare me the moral argument. It's all whose oxe is being gored.

26th Aug 2008, 15:00
Well in keeping of the OP's subject there is no conflict between old and not so old pilots in SAS. Pers. opinions on when one should retire or not are discussed in closed forums and there is certainly no FLIGHT SAFETY issues.

The story is one of many started in scandinavia this summer hammering down on SAS and especially SAS pilots for wathever unknown reason - lack of real stories i guess.

The discussion in this forum wheter or not one should go home and mow the lawn are really not of interest to the parties involvede. It is a matter between employees/unions and management and are discussed in forums closed to the public.

26th Aug 2008, 16:08
The law has changed
Unfortunately not enough. I was speaking to a friend who works for a well known London media company. She is obliged to terminate her employment for a month each year, presumably so that her employer can avoid their responsibilities to her as a permanent employee. That, together with pilots paying for their own type ratings, suggests that EU law and unions are still failing to look after employee welfare.

27th Aug 2008, 07:44
The mesage is not getting through.


EC legislation overrules ALL UK national Law. You don't concede anything!

And how did we get to this position?


27th Aug 2008, 09:18
Listen to Rainboe, he is right.

I don't like most of the EU law, but in the UK we follow it.

Sometimes I wish we were more like our EU cousins and ignored the ones that don't suit us.

In this instance the law is good.

27th Aug 2008, 09:22
I see open warfare on the horizon....!!

27th Aug 2008, 15:54
Surely the only real point of disagreement here should be if the Capt's concerned are indeed taking a pension and a salary. In this case anyone being made redundant has ample cause for complaint if someone else is effectively on two incomes whilst his/hers is about to be terminated. The only justifiable option must be , if you wish and are fit to fly to the new limit of 65 great, enjoy this career most of us chose due to sheer love of aviation. . . but, hey you didn't retire so don't expect that pension to be paid until you do.
Years ago when 55yr old ex BA pilots went out and for 5 years took jobs the rest of us would have liked, whilst it was frustrating, you had to ackowledge that they were offering their services as experienced pilots in a free market ( even if their lesser " need " for money was inevitably depressing the renumeration for the rest of us) but at least they had done this in a free market. Taking a pension AND staying on resulting in a loss of job to your colleagues, Yeah that stinks, Pension or Salary, surely just one or the other here.
Oh, and the frustrated F/O's shouldn't be trying to lay the blame on the wrinklies if the company starts trying to negotiate 65 for everyone. Even if not 1 Capt asked to stay that extra 5 yrs you can be sure the company would come asking for it sooner rather than later. Do you really think they want to contribute financially to you enjoying your later life,unproductive, or they prefer you work till you drop? Think if you are being realistic you can answer that one easily enough

27th Aug 2008, 16:56
The nasty side of this: pilots who work longer die sooner - less years in retirement. The company gains on both ends.

Of course, no pilot believes this will happen to him/her. Only to the other guys.

MadDog Driver
27th Aug 2008, 18:25
Catplaystation and Huck,

You are both right. SAS is economically up sh** creek as are many airlines. Everyone doing their dam***** every day to save every penny possible! But these colleagues; they had a contract stipulating 60 years retirement age! They are on both pension and salary! And some are now sueing the company for a lot of money, because in their "over 60" new contract it was agreed that "over 60 flying" means 100% duty time!! And now they want part time flying! So that they can work on off-days...which at SAS pays a pretty handsome amount of money to put it mildly! Don't say I'm speculating! This we see every day!
Right now,rumours are, that there are 110 pilots about to be laid off...5 years ago 350 were kicked out..not one has been asked to come back!
So they are not the most popular dudes around!
I have no problem with the EU law! I've realised that it is the reality, and I'd better learn to live with it, or I'll end up a bitter idiot!
So ok with me! And as far as I know, there are absolutely no problems in the cockpit either! The Norwegian CAA is saying, that they noticed some problems in an audit..but now have absolute trust in the safety environment in SAS cockpit's. I think we have some newspapers up in Norway, that were short of good stories to stir the pot over the summer!


seat 0A
28th Aug 2008, 18:17
I never thought I would see a thread where so many people seem to be in agreement with 411A.
Now, what does this mean:ugh:

Let`s keep the retirement age at 60 maximum where we can!

29th Aug 2008, 08:06
In most of the cases, I am in full agreement with 411A...
One thing I have seen these last 10-15, maybe 20 years, is a complete change of attitude of junior pilots with their senior pilots, particularly in Europe, and somewhat in North America.
When I recall my early days (PanAm 1969), we respected our captains, and enjoyed learning from their experience. Again, 90% of them were great guys, and we were sorry when they retired, as we missed them as our best friends, aviation scholars and teachers. They never failed to give us advice, and explain the why of many things in the planes. Our captains traded seats, it was legal then, I had plenty of experience in the LHS, which helped me a lot when I upgraded. I still use techniques, now in 2008, that I learned from them. I can even fly an ADF approach with 30 kts crosswind.
I flew with the last navigators, in the older 707s on oceanic routes, one of them had been navigator on Boeing 314s seaplanes, he was some 72 or 73 of age. They never failed to show us how to make a star shot, or how to use Loran A and Doppler navigation. We had a F/E aged 75 years. He knew the 707 from the tip of the radome to the tail light. Some never needed a troubleshooting manual to fix a malfunction.
I guess you "juniors" do resent that I occupy "YOUR" left seat so late in my career, yet I have kept the old traditions, and provide the best experience to the true friends I also have in the RH seat. Well, it is not my fault that PanAm went into bankruptcy in December 1991, forcing me to survive best as I could, and it is not me, who told you to invest €75,000 in ATPLs stored in your freezers. In the old days, you might have had to invest in a PPL, or a CPL/IR at worst.
Do not worry, I retire at end of November. and until then, as well, as 411A does with his stinking Havana cigars, I will bother you with my pipe and my cherry or maple flavored tobaccos, or my Marlboros. And please, remove your foot from my oxygen mask hose... Thank you.
Happy contrails

29th Aug 2008, 08:28
You don't get respect by adding 4 stribes to an idiot.

You have to earn it !

If FO's in europe and north america lack somewhat in showing respect of senior officers then that's ok with me instead of crashing into the dirt by not commanding "go around" or taking prober action when the other guy dosn't.

By the way all the nice guy's are taking their pension i SAS

29th Aug 2008, 12:25
Doesn't sound like you are making much of an effort to have that respect available for when your time comes.

29th Aug 2008, 12:49
I do believe that a lot of the younger posters on this thread are totally unaware that, until sometime in the 1970s, in the UK and many European countries the official retirement age was 65 (though some airlines had a lower, internal agreement). Sometime in the 1970s the USA, closely followed by the UK and followed on by other European countries changed the official retirement age, arbitrarily, overnight, to 60.

I missed out but some of my colleagues who joined expecting a full career to 65 and then had it amputated to 60 are lucky enough to get back their just deserts, a full career to 65.

The correct retirement age is 65, the actual retirement age maybe more, maybe less but only decided by ability to pass check rides and physical fitness. If a company can persuade you to retire before the legal age limit then they must offer considerable financial reward.

The idea of a 60+ captain drawing both salary and pension is absurd and illegal in most countries, equally absurd is the idea that they now sue their employer for not allowing them to bid for part time and collect large payments for working on their usual 'non-working' days. Can't they now be sacked under that catch all clause in most contracts, "Neglecting the best interests of the Company"?

29th Aug 2008, 13:16
Accept it boys! That is the law- go to Brussels and see if you can do something about it (you can't). It will give you a longer career. Nobody will have any patience with you! You cannot change it.
Another nail in the coffin of the seniority system. At least seniority systems are not legally enshrined, and at the instigation of the younger colleagues who perceive themselves to be "screwed" by the older pilots in such instances as this, the whole seniority system will sooner come crashing down.

About time.

I have to agree with all the other comments on this thread though.

29th Aug 2008, 15:10
Take Off (http://www.takeoff.dk/news.cfm?nNewsWeekly=0&nNewsId=17725)

The article is in Danish, but it basically says that an agreement has been made between the union and SAS to let the 50 oldest pilots go by September 30th. and another 40 in 2009 while the younger pilots are retained.

2nd Sep 2008, 01:12
Finally a sensible decision by SAS, not too soon at all. :ok:

SAS do have problems, especially with RHS pilots who have been there for about 10-12 years before the upgrade. Today I have no idea how long it would take to get your upgrade according to the seniority system. I would imagine that there are no upgrades in SAS now, except maybe for the few that gets them when the 40 or 50 oldest pilots leave. :confused:

Speaking of respect for your captain, its all down to culture, airline and individuals. There are captains who are upset becuase you dont call them "sir" or "captain", just by first name. Or that the company doesnt start the written letter by "Captain". Well thats very old school and my point of view is that that kind of CRM does not work anymore. :=
There are captains that still try and teach in a nice and structural way, which is great- there is a lot to learn. :8
There are captains that think they are Gods gift to aviation and tries to be something they are not, for example training captains. That is silly and just stupid. :ugh:

I can agree that there is a change in mentality with the young, new and not very experienced RHS. They have attitude and sometimes a disrespectful manner towards the final decision making pilot; the captain. I know from own experience in the LHS that there are pilots in the RHS that tries to be smarter and faster than the captain, without reason. Just to prove themselves. :mad:

Annoying attitude- we have the same goal and its a team effort. Nothing for heros.

What has happened in some companies is that the time for upgrades has been very short due to expansion so the average age of time in the RHS did decreased a lot. Today the RHS people are now very impatient for their upgrades since the business has stopped again to expand.

Just relax and enjoy the ride :E If not there is always BALPA :suspect:

2nd Sep 2008, 05:13
If you were hired at age 30 and retire at age 60 you should expect to spend 15+ years in the right seat. The only way that number shrinks is if the fleet size grows. in this age of shrinking fleets the reality is you may well spend over 50% of your career in thee right seat. If your carrier flys long haul and uses additional F/Os your time in the right seat goes up

2nd Sep 2008, 06:26
This article says young SAS pilots have been busy threatening the older pilots, to the point of having legs broken if refusing to retire :hmm:

Scandinavian Airlines pilots bullying each other | IceNews - Daily News (http://www.icenews.is/index.php/2008/08/31/scandinavian-airlines-pilots-bullying-each-other/)

2nd Sep 2008, 09:01

I hate to rain on your parade, BUT, things are not as clear cut as you attempt to make them.

While EU directives generally supercedes national law, the interpretation of that directive or law, also depends on HOW the EU directive or law is written into national legislation.

FYI, the thinking up until now, is that both danish and norwegian laws, while allowing pilots to fly until age 65, ALSO allows employers and employees to come to some other arrangement. The swedish adaptation of age 65 on the other hand, seemingly, does not. At least that is the interpretation as of right now.

If I have to accept age 65, well then eventually I will. I will never like it, but I will learn to live with it. If, on the other hand SAS and the unions someday come to an agreement stating that you stop when you are 60, fine by me, that is what I prefer. (This obviously requires some sort of change of interpretation with regards to the swedish set of laws.)

A totally different situation arises when we talk about redundancies. Contrary to popular belief, the principle of Last In, First Out, is not a law. It is just that, a principle. Think about it, age discrimination is still age discrimination if you lay off the youngest first. Why is it more fair to fire the youngest pilots first? Well, it isnt, and to add injury to insult, they are not at a point in their lives where they can just retire.

With regards to the latest round of redundancies at SAS the company and the unions agreed that it surely is easier for somebody with a fully funded pension plan to deal with being laid off. I couldnt agree more!! That view is correct, morally right and logical. An added bonus for most of the captains reaching age 60 is that they USUALLY fly the A340 and thus have thousands of PIC hours on that airplane. That makes them able to relatively easily get another job. FYI, contributions to the pension plan stops when an SAS pilot reaches 60.



2nd Sep 2008, 10:12
Absolutely right, the basic EU directive had to be put into national laws and those differe considerably. In germany it is possible to restrict the maximum working age by union/company contracts as well as by other national laws. Same applies to france as far as i know.

Actually the general retirement age in germany is raising at the moment to 67 and everyone who retires earlier has to take a hefty decrease in state pension. Something that pilots are forced to do anyway since they cannot work longer than 65 (means a 14% lower state pension although they put in the maximum amount possible over their working life).

Lufthansa has a special company pension scheme which allows pilots to retire earlier and still earn enough money to live on (well, more than enough actually). The german ATC provider (DFS) has an agreement with its ATCOs that they have to retire at 55 and are kept on a salary as well. So that is not only a single case with Lufty. Of course in the case of the pilots it is the official union policy that pilots should retire latest at 60, and it lobbies very strongly within IFALPA to keep that the international policy (which it still is as far as i know).

2nd Sep 2008, 14:39
Would I be off the mark if I suggested younger pilots seem to be becoming more money/status orientated than doing it for the passion of flying?

ECAM Actions.

2nd Sep 2008, 15:09

with all due respect, I think that you got it backwards.

I am on the fast track to becoming a 20 year FO, and so be it. All I really want is some sort of career progression, personal development, call it want you want. At my company the pay increase is somewhere around 15%, when you make captain, possibly even a little less. And with the tax system here is Denmark, the leftovers are pathetic. And incidently, we get our pension based on years of service, not years in any given seat.

On the other hand, I think that the 60+ crowd are staying for the money, pure and simple. They have a good life, so hey, "gimme more"!!

I realize that not all companies have the same setup, but the majority of pilots, if you ask me, get into the business because of some all consuming
interest in aviation. We would all like to sample as many apects of the job as possible, nothing more or less.

Now, a given group of people, most of whom experienced the golden age of airline flying and benefitted from age 60 themselves, are clinging to the "dream" and negatively impacting my career. That obviously breeds discontent. Again, not financially!



2nd Sep 2008, 18:57
There is nothing new or discriminatory about laying off all those near pensionable age first. Tis common practice and exactly what most unions encourage as in Sterling at the moment.

Win/win for all parties.

3rd Sep 2008, 08:03
When I am turning 60 in 20 years, I hope, that I will still get respect from my FOs
You probably will, if you adhere to the terms of your contract and union rules and vacate your position like you agreed to when you signed on.
If on the other hand you decide to deprive your colleagues of the benefits and opportunities of advancement that you yourself have taken advantage of throughout your career, then do expect to be ostracized.

5th Sep 2008, 00:18
the "principle" first in - first out, is law in Sweden. It is called "lagen om anställningsskydd".

5th Sep 2008, 10:34

5th Sep 2008, 12:05
I spent nearly 19 years waiting for upgrade.

So... at year 18, if you had suddenly gotten 5 more years tacked on to your sentence in the right seat, you would have been o.k. with it?

Recall also that your 26 years tenure as captain was by no means a sure thing at that point. In my company us pilots have a 25% chance of losing our medical before reaching 60. The odds of your company getting shot out from under you by bankruptcy are growing bigger and bigger. It's fine to look back and say that the balance of your career was fine, but none of that was guaranteed at the midway point.

The resentment of first officers may seem distasteful to you now. Trust me, the perspective is different for those of us on the other side. I actually had a 757 Captain class date before the law was changed. Now, it will be another 5 years.

It is, really, all about whose ox is being gored.

Me Myself
5th Sep 2008, 17:33
That's ridiculous!!! I am sixteen and have always wanted to become a pilot, not for the seniority or the money, but for a passion of flying. I just don't see that in pilots anymore...


You sorry little dwarf. Just the passion of flying ??? no money ??? Are you Willie Walshe's son playing late with the computer or what ?? Go to the flying club if you enjoy flying for no money; you'll even have to pay. How swell is that ??. Just you wait until you need to feed and raise a family and have a life; then you can have your say about all this crap passion and all. Be a good boy now, go back to your room.

For the life of me, I cannot understand why people would want to stay beyond 60. Does anyone have an idea about pilot's life expectancy after retirement ??? Nothing to be too cheery about from what I have seen. As to medical scrutiny; give me a break, the medical has become a joke. As from July, European pilots won't need a second medical beyond 40. Anyone who wants to stay the fair age of 60 either has 4 ex wives or no life at home..............or both.
Clear the pad.

Norway is a fantastic place !!

5th Sep 2008, 22:12
This attitude need drastic re-evaluation. There are very simple rights here:
1- The private financial arrangements of Captains are none of your business, It is their private matter. If they get salary and pension, what has that got to do with you?
2- I signed a contract in 1970. My pay in it was £1900 a year. It gets renegotiated and changed over the years. What has any original contract term got to do with it when it gets renegotiated every year?
3- There is a serious problem with inexperienced copilots hustling for commands. It is pitiful to force out a lot of experience because of hustling from the right hand seat.
4- It's a job. Not happy? Move- see if you find better. I spent nearly 19 years waiting for upgrade. I hope to have 26 years as Captain. You must expect up to half your career in the right hand seat, maybe better for you with the gradual expansion of the industry.
1- Where did I make anybody's private financial arrangements my business?
2- Well, nothing. What's your point? Or are you confusing the terms "contract" and "law"?
3- Do a little research (or just read the previous posts). In this particular case your "inexperienced copilots" have a minimum of 10+ years with the company (plus probably a fair amount of prior experience) and are 40+ years old. Those are the junior guys, facing yet another round of lay offs. The senior FO's have 17 years with the company - with no upgrade in sight. Please explain what hustling they are guilty of.
4- "You must expect up to half your career in the right hand seat". Hey Einstein, do a little math here and tell us what you come up with.

5th Sep 2008, 22:30
Pilots are smart just to fly planes. For everything else are stupid like a chicken.

While in all other professions struggle to reduce their age for retirement....the smarts pilots want to fly more...

The problem is that such an inteligence seems to be common worldwide...

To have an idea of what is negociate conditins, I will tell you that Lisbon controlers retire at age 55.They fought for that.
And if they want to keep working till age 60 MAX. besides their salary they get more 7000 euros each 3 month.

But the pilots....soon will be talking about retiring at age 80 y.o.

6th Sep 2008, 18:32
Hey don't worry my career with be 5 years longer as a benefit? True, but isn't that the old Nelson Mandela situation?...spend a lifetime in prison but when you finally get out, you're president!! Don't worry be happy.

Perhaps we should then lobby to change the law to 70 when it's my time to go at 65. Yes, yes, that would be perfect....:ugh:

6th Sep 2008, 19:10
If you were a captain the day the rule changed, you got five more years as a captain.

Everybody else got five more years where they sit.

Combined with the time value of money, and the decreased life expectancy of flying long-haul until 65, it is quite a costly change.

All this was discussed for years on this site and elsewhere. No need to rehash it now. Just don't whizz on my leg and tell me it's raining.

6th Sep 2008, 19:53
I work for a company where the retirement age has been progressively increased over the years. Everyone has benefitted, even me.

Forgive me, I don't know what all the whining is about?

6th Sep 2008, 20:48
SortieIII, do you mean that, in your company, pilots over 60 years of age have been paid both salary and pension, while "young" first officers with minimum 10 years in the right hand seat has been laid off?

7th Sep 2008, 04:32

I think you are referring to this:

22 § Vid uppsägning på grund av arbetsbrist skall arbetsgivaren iaktta följande turordningsregler.
Innan turordningen fastställs får en arbetsgivare med högst tio arbetstagare oavsett antalet turordningskretsar undanta högst två arbetstagare som enligt arbetsgivarens bedömning är av särskild betydelse för den fortsatta verksamheten. Vid beräkningen av antalet arbetstagare hos arbetsgivaren bortses från arbetstagare som avses i 1 § (http://www.notisum.se/rnp/sls/lag/19820080.HTM#P1). Den eller de arbetstagare som undantas har företräde till fortsatt anställning.
Har arbetsgivaren flera driftsenheter, fastställs en turordning för varje enhet för sig. Enbart den omständigheten att en arbetstagare har sin arbetsplats i sin bostad medför inte att den arbetsplatsen utgör en egen driftsenhet. Om arbetsgivaren är eller brukar vara bunden av kollektivavtal, fastställs en särskild turordning för varje avtalsområde. Finns det i ett sådant fall flera driftsenheter på samma ort, skall inom en arbetstagarorganisations avtalsområde fastställas en gemensam turordning för samtliga enheter på orten, om organisationen begär det senast vid förhandlingar enligt 29 § (http://www.notisum.se/rnp/sls/lag/19820080.HTM#P29).
Turordningen för de arbetstagare som inte undantagits bestäms med utgångspunkt i varje arbetstagares sammanlagda anställningstid hos arbetsgivaren. Arbetstagare med längre anställningstid har företräde framför arbetstagare med kortare anställningstid. Vid lika anställningstid ger högre ålder företräde. Kan en arbetstagare endast efter omplacering beredas fortsatt arbete hos arbetsgivaren, gäller som förutsättning för företräde enligt turordningen att arbetstagaren har tillräckliga kvalifikationer för det fortsatta arbetet. Lag (2000:763).

However, you also have to read this:

2 § Om det i en annan lag eller i en förordning som har meddelats med stöd av en lag finns särskilda föreskrifter som avviker från denna lag, skall dessa föreskrifter gälla.
Ett avtal är ogiltigt i den mån det upphäver eller inskränker arbetstagarnas rättigheter enligt denna lag.
Genom ett kollektivavtal får det göras avvikelser från 5 (http://www.notisum.se/rnp/sls/lag/19820080.HTM#P5), 6 (http://www.notisum.se/rnp/sls/lag/19820080.HTM#P6), 22 (http://www.notisum.se/rnp/sls/lag/19820080.HTM#P22) och 25 (http://www.notisum.se/rnp/sls/lag/19820080.HTM#P25)-27 §§ (http://www.notisum.se/rnp/sls/lag/19820080.HTM#P27).

And for those of you not conversant in Swedish:

Yes, there is a law saying that senority counts in times of redundancies. But this can be overruled by a collective agreement. The law is in Sweden called "dispositiv".

NB. I'm not an expert on this law. There might be other interpretations done in previous court cases. I guess this matter will end up in court as well. Time will tell.

7th Sep 2008, 11:43

Absolutely correct,

My reply was to someone who said that it was just a principle, not a law. However, as you say, in a collective agreement you can "disregard" this particular law. As SAS has done with their senioritylist. Ususally in sweden, (scandinavia?) all the collective agreements have some type of seniority list, which is used, among other things, to decide who will be let go in case of a downturn. Since the "list" is an agreement between the union and the company, they can negotiate this as they wish, more or less.

I just read that SAS and pf have agreed to let the "oldest" pilots go instead of the youngest, in case of a surplus of pilots.

Please, I have no opinion in this case, since I was layed off in 2002 from SAS and my career have since then not really suffered from it. Far from it. I am just interested to know if it is any thruth to what I read.