View Full Version : Why have FOs

mona lot
17th Apr 2009, 18:21
What is the point of FOs

Everyone knows most FOs are up to their necks in debt (circa £80 000) these days and will do absolutely anything asked of them (bust FTL/MEL). So the YES MAN has now replaced the last link in the chain.:ugh::ugh::ugh: What purpose does the FO now serve?

17th Apr 2009, 18:32
When you meet a nice blonde in a bar someday and you decide to hook up with her, maybe in 10 years from now you will be in debt without having realised it.
When you start a flying career today you know perfect what will be expected from you AND what it will cost.

I can only speak for myself (but no doubt for the majority of FO's) that I will not bust FTL nor anything else. (except clouds)

I understand your frustration but in our part of the world (also the part where you live) FO's are equally respected collegues in the flightdeck.

Of the 2600 hrs I have as an FO on 737 never a decision was made on the flightdeck without my opinion asked.

mona lot
17th Apr 2009, 18:36
I am definetley not a troll.

You should train and nurture new Captains, not put new FOs in this position where they are £80 000 in debt. Imagine turning up every day for work knowing you are second in command of 200 passengers but you also have £80 000 of personal liabilities to service?

If it means passengers pay another £1 on their ticket to Spain than so be it!

mona lot
17th Apr 2009, 18:41
Okay let me reword it, Airline Managers know most FOs are up sh*t creek and will do anything to get/keep their job, and will abuse them accordingly, hence pay to fly.

17th Apr 2009, 18:41
What a complete and utter birk!
Congratulations Mona......you could be talking the biggest drivel ever seen on prune!


mona lot
17th Apr 2009, 18:58
Oh yeah Windshear, which F.T.O. do you work for?

Do you know what it is like to be £80 000 in debt?, have you ever been in command of 200 passengers?,

Can you not see the conflict:ugh::ugh::ugh:

if you can answer yes to any of these, then I look forward to your reply, otherwise go away.

Do you have to spend all day carrying these pay to fly YES MEN?

We've had enough, its gonna hit the press very soon!

17th Apr 2009, 19:13
Seriously, of course there have to be first officers. On every flight deck somebody has to be the first one command, that is the captain . The second in command is the FO. It's just the way it is.

During the carrerpath of a pilot you first become a first officer or a second officer, and then as your seniority increases you eventually become a captain. It's bloody logical and important that you go that way. And think about it, who would like to fly with a 22 year old captain?? :eek:
It's also about experience, you need to have a certain amount of hours in your loggbook before you can be first in command and have the last call in an emergency situation.
Your idea is completely stupid.

17th Apr 2009, 19:16
Why F/Os? It´s terribly boreing without. that´s why. I start thinking too much when flying alone (or #2 asleep) so I prefer the small talk enroute. And your FTL/MEL point does not count: It´s never the F/Os decision! Or was your question serious?

17th Apr 2009, 19:21
mona lot, or should I say moan alot, why is it I can feel alot of anger in this thread. If it's because you are finding your way up the career path very difficult, both financially and professionally, then all I can say is hang in there because we've all been through it. If on the other hand its something else than please get :mad: because you seem to be talking alot of $hite!

I actually rely on FO's to keep me on my toes as they do their best to know the aircraft and the SOP's inside out; we are there for each other.

have a nice day :)

17th Apr 2009, 19:21
Hy everybody,

I can see your point, Mona, but already in the past how many F/Os prefered to die than to say NO to the captain or to the Management ?

mona lot
17th Apr 2009, 19:27
So you are £80 000 in debt and you can only JUST meet your loan repayments. You've just done 5 days on. Crewing call you on your day off. Are you gonna phone in fatigued or not? Its not right that people are starting with £80 000 of debt:ugh: I will always say NO if required!

17th Apr 2009, 19:32
welcome to aviation. you put the hard work in (blood, sweat and tears etc) to one day reap the benefits of a command and a good salary. This is just the nature of the beast. before embarking on your training you would have done your homework to come to the conclusion that you will/might be in financial difficulties during the early part of your financial career.

mona lot
17th Apr 2009, 19:39
I am a Captain, I have been for some time, I have no debt!

My point is, I rely on my FO as second in command to back me up and support me, I want to be assured he/she is not under any undue commercial pressure. I am not convinced this is the case.

mona lot
17th Apr 2009, 19:49
Note to self;

Do not post on Flight Sim forums:ugh::ugh::ugh:

17th Apr 2009, 19:59
Hmm, oddly enough the adverts titled 'Direct entry Captain required for long haul operation, must have absolutely no experience what so ever' are a touché thin on the ground no?

If you feel the person you are flying with is under excess duress as a direct result of their chosen career option then you need to call it as you, supposedly the Captain, see fit.

Most FO's, when straight out of their respective FTOs', are keen, bright, enthusiastic and well aware of their limitations and their financial position. Oddly enough they are the ones who are most concerned about the state of the industry as they will be living/flying with the future T's & C's whereas we old knackers will be long gone propping up a bar somewhere lamenting the 'good ol days'.

If you feel they are being horse whipped then it is up to you as the company pilots to ensure that the company is aware of the problem and the more 'unsure' members of the flight deck team get adequate backup and support.

If not then you're in the wrong job.

edit: Looking back at your previous posts it seems that you could indeed be in the wrong job. Some interesting comments about your fellow co-workers seem to come rapidly to the fore as with the dislike of some of your colleagues. I assume you were never the 'FO' you seem to despise?

17th Apr 2009, 20:02
In a round about way I can just about see the poorly worded point that Mona is attempting to make which is fairly valid in my opinion. More so from the slant of a heavily indebted FO agreeing to fly because they HAVE to in order to service their debt. However, from a CRM point of view I sincerely hope I never have to share a flight deck with him.

Nb. for Mona: rest assured I'm not a flight simmer. I have an APTL with 6000+ hours of medium and large jet time. I too was that heavily debt-laden FO once. At the risk of sounding cliched, safety always came first my friend.

mona lot
17th Apr 2009, 20:12
I sincerely hope I never have to share a flight deck with him.

Localiser, the feelings mutual:ok:

17th Apr 2009, 20:14
I think the underlying issue here is not about going straight to captain, or indeed about being fed up with the career path - everyone knows it before they start out.

The issue is being £80k in debt, and unfortunatly until Brown and his cronies are out there's nothing we can do about it - he thinks this is a profession for the privileged and hoity-toity upper class rabble - well I can tell you that there enough of us from less privileged backgrounds trying to get onto the career path to make that not so!

I am not exactly jubilent at the thought of having to borrow so much I'll be eating tesco super-save or whatever it is for the next 8 years, but that's the way it is, and if you don't like it, well good luck in finding a sponsorship.

mona lot
17th Apr 2009, 20:32

I wish you the very best of luck, but please don't get on a flight deck £80 000 in the red!

17th Apr 2009, 20:51
£80k in debt or not, the FOs job is to stand up and speak up when something is wrong; and I think that is what most FOs do. I find your first post to be very offensive towards the majority of pilots, who either are, or have been, serving as good FOs.

Yes; to a few commercial pressure may come in the way, like with all businesses. No one likes to lose their jobs? Other groups of people may have debts (mortgages?) too, and losing your job will always be a serious matter for those involved.

Some airlines do possibly feed on cadets willing to part with substantial cash to get a foot it; that is not the same as saying that once they are in, they will do anything. I think most decent airlines are interested in hiring crew with a spine, FOs that will indeed speak up -- you can be flexible and effective without compromising safety; but I believe that the integrity to say NO when it is needed, is much valued.

Yes, the system is not perfect and I do not like pay-to-fly-schemes. However, even thinking that FOs are redundant for that sole reason, I believe, says something about your intelligence and breadth of view. Sorry if that offends you -- but at least to me that's how you come across.

17th Apr 2009, 20:53
you DO know its possible to be £80k in debt AND be a professional pilot with a good attitude to the job?

17th Apr 2009, 20:54
I think the reason they still employ First Officers is to help captains like yourself pull your head out of your arse.
That, and the company trying to reduce the risk of people like you, (that think they know it all), being at the receiving end of the AAIB looking at your burnt remains at the end of a chewed up runway in one of their planes.

If you can't afford to be there, don't spend the money you don't have.

All the best :ok:

17th Apr 2009, 21:05
There is a lot of anger here(or wind-up?!) but look...

We all know that it's hard bloody graft and big money(debt) to get even in the right seat and it seems at times really unfair.. And..there should be easier ways for young men and women to get into this career, but there aren't at present and I don't see anyway that can change.

If you want to be a deep sea diver you gotta pay for the course ( cheaper than an ATPL I grant you!) and it's the same for a lot of other careers.

It's not Gordon Brown's fault it's just free market economics.

Glad I did it, even with big debts and now glad to encourage others through the tough times of training..

17th Apr 2009, 21:21
Umm, here is another reason: http://www.pprune.org/rumours-news/370083-az-767-diverts-snn-pilot-medical-emergency.html

17th Apr 2009, 21:37
This has to be a wind up - surely.

But if not, how do you propose the industry hires FO's? Who pays for the ATPL training?

Keep drinking, it'll all be better in the morning...:ugh:

brit bus driver
17th Apr 2009, 22:05
Blimey....good job none of the skippers I fly with have huge mortgages, expensive cars to run, perhaps a touch of alimony, school fees, golf club subscriptions, family holidays to pay for......need I go on.

We all have our own personal stresses and strains. If you can't leave them in the car park, go sick. IMHO Mona, this would seem to extend to your broad-brush attitude to the FOs with whom you fly.

Happy landings.:ok:

17th Apr 2009, 22:23
you DO know its possible to be £80k in debt AND be a professional pilot with a good attitude to the job?

Exactly, I'm utterly amazed at this thread!! :eek:

To contemplate that because someone has self funded their way into aviation means they will be more likely to take a risk than someone who hasn't...........

............. only some media bafoon could come up with this idea.

The yanks have been self funding their careers for years and those that didn't go via the RAF or BA Hamble / Oxford (depending on your age) in the UK have been too.

Within 6 months most F/O's have been 'earbashed' by the likes of the rest of us with our everyday company moan and groans that they soon begin to lose the excitment and turn in to the next breed of moaners!

An F/O that has joined from a good FTO should always be safety minded. As an example I'd like to name a few uk airlines that have employed low houred, highly debted F/O's all of which have done, or shall become aircraft commanders:

BA, BMI, BMI Baby, BMed, Eastern, Easy Jet, Flybe, Flightline, First Choice, GB, Jet2, Monarch, My Travel, Ryanair, Thomas Cook, Thomson I'm sure if I bothered to look for more I could find some..........

As pointed out above I can think of a few 4-bared friends with 2 or 3 ex wives each, a public school education to pay for, a 3rd mortgage etc etc who'd give their eye teeth to 'only' be £80k in debt :rolleyes:

17th Apr 2009, 22:45
Within 6 months most F/O's have been 'earbashed' by the likes of the rest of us with our everyday company moan and groans that they soon begin to lose the excitment and turn in to the next breed of moaners!

Excellent! :ok:

17th Apr 2009, 23:40
Quoting Mona lot:

I am a Captain, I have been for some time, I have no debt!

My point is, I rely on my FO as second in command to back me up and support me, I want to be assured he/she is not under any undue commercial pressure. I am not convinced this is the case.


they don't need commercial pressure to feel miserable at work because they have YOU...:}

18th Apr 2009, 02:28
Looking at this from another direction, recent US legislation has permitted jets over 12500lbs to fly single crew if the a/c has the right equipment. The bean counters would surely love to move to no FOs at all up the chain, and in the event of pilot incapacitation, the duty trainer will be landing the thing from a computer in flight ops. Of course this won't happen will it, public perception and all that, but my granny woudn't get in one of those new-fangled lifts without the operator, and what happened to them....

18th Apr 2009, 06:27
you know , Mona, there is no excuse to break rules when you have 200 people on board(or even 1). Will you carry drug if your employee ask you? noway!

who lose his license, you or the employer if you bust the law?who go to jail?

Me too, many times, employers ask me to fly illegaly. I just refused, and I lost my job. but later these companies have been busted...or managers have been fired!

We should be proud of our profession, and respect regulations.At the end, we are the guys who transport people; not the idiot sitting behind a desk and counting his"golden hello" $.

and if you dont' make it financially , file bankrupt....

Pilot Pete
18th Apr 2009, 14:02
Oh how I wish I only had £80k of debt! What on earth has the debt got to do with it? brit bus driver summed it up quite well, most captains have more debt than that. Debt is proportionate. Someone earning twice as much as an average F/O may have a higher proportion of debt and therefore be worse off.

Doesn't stop fellow captains like me turning up for work and acting professionally, so why should it stop an F/O?

If you want to talk about training costs and risk/ reward, then find the right forum.........


18th Apr 2009, 15:04
Does anyone know who the OP works for? I want to make sure anybody I care about avoids them.

What a cretin.

18th Apr 2009, 18:32
sorry to ask but...OP?

18th Apr 2009, 20:24
Mona I go back to my original post...stop being such a birk!!

Do you expect the industry to recruit 250hr captains?


Oh, and a p.s.......do you have a mortgage?

18th Apr 2009, 21:48
Hmmm a captain who does not quite understand the concept of unusable fuel? Worrying to say the least?

Mister Geezer
18th Apr 2009, 22:26
F/Os that I have generally flown with are keen to apply the rules like I would as a Skipper. I don't know many people that would wish to have an extra early instead of a morning in ones scratcher. :confused:

19th Apr 2009, 09:56
Same would apply to a young doctor, after 5-6 years of study the average debt for a self funded student is £60-80k. Does that mean he/she is not mentaly suitable to treat patients? Debt is result of having to pay for discretionary things, you were not forced to train as a pilot.

20th Apr 2009, 18:08
First of all, 80.000 pounds debt... who cares. With the nosedive your funny money is taking one will be debt free in no time :}

All kidding aside; we need F/Os because otherwise chances would increase of flying with amateur f - sticks like yourself. Next topic please.


21st Apr 2009, 12:41
Why have F/Os ? Let me think....

(1) To prevent Captains from exceeding FTLs
(2) To prevent Captains from ignoring MEL limitations
(3) To fly the aeroplane from A to B while the Captain is doing the radio
(4) To operate the radio when the Captain is PF
(5) To ensure safe operation in a CRM environment
(6) To allow the Captain to go for a pee
(7) To prevent certain desperado Captains from making a fool of themselves with stewardesses who are a third of their age
(8) To get the necessary experience to become a Captain in time
(9) To corroberate or challenge Captain decisions

As for the £80k, it's supply and demand. If people weren't prepared to get into debt to get their dream job, the airlines would stump up ab-intio training costs. They don't need to sadly.

21st Apr 2009, 13:02
Surely the answer is more prosaic; because the captain could die?

Torque Tonight
21st Apr 2009, 13:16
To answer to the original question "What is the point of FOs?" (which the OP seems to be backpeddling from furiously), perhaps he should ask Captain Tim Lancaster (http://www.google.co.uk/search?sourceid=navclient&hl=en-GB&ie=UTF-8&rlz=1T4SNYK_en-GBGB307GB307&q=%22Captain+Tim+Lancaster%22).

21st Apr 2009, 13:33
Another Thread Started By Mona (http://www.pprune.org/questions/370383-what-do.html)

What do you do when you are rostered to fly with a complete ******* **** that you can't stand.http://static.pprune.org/images/smilies/boohoo.gif

Do you

a) phone in sick or
b) turn up and grin and bear it.http://static.pprune.org/images/smilies/confused.gif

Got this situation tomorrow, any advise appreciated.

Then from this one:

I am a Captain, I have been for some time, I have no debt!

Are you really a captain if you post the likes of the above. I'll wager your FO's have more captaincy ability than you...

Note to self;

Do not post on Flight Sim forums:ugh::ugh::ugh:
Yet you'll happily ask people questions like the one above... and happily contemplate pulling a sicky to avoid working with someone. Captain my A***

21st Apr 2009, 13:43
In a 30+ years flying career I have rarely come across a more arrogant, opinionated, self-centered ar5e than this! :yuk:

Oh silly me! I've obviously fallen for it and taken the bait! :confused:

It's got to be a wind-up. If not, go :mad: yourself! :ok:

Low Flier
6th May 2009, 22:21