View Full Version : Some consideration please QF

Trevor the lover
23rd Oct 2009, 21:31
I know it's undoubtedly SOP, and therefore not the pilots fault, but it would be nice if Qantas would consider others and remove the SOP of wing inspection lights on whilst on the ground at night. They are very, very bright, and being as they point outwards from the aircraft, they are extremely blinding to say the least to other pilots on the tarmac.

I've had enough of having my night vision stuffed up. Its obviously aimed at high visibility - but a little bit over the top I think. It is quite simply a hazard to others.

Thank you.


23rd Oct 2009, 21:43
I don't disagree with what you are saying, Trev. However Pprune is not really the ideal forum to voice your concerns/get policy of an airline changed. I'd suggest you submit safety related paperwork through your company and they can then approach Eurocontrol, FAA and AirServices Australia (the three organisations involved in the recommendations) to have the policy changed.


23rd Oct 2009, 21:55
How did ICAO/CASA drive this change?

I would think they would be more interested in the potential non compliance associated with not displaying nav lights during the day in IMC, and unless QF group aeroplanes turn their nav lights on and off as they go through cloud, I would think that by not just turning them on and leaving them on they are technically non compliant

I say technically as I dont think anyone really gives a crap, but if they are changing procedures to meet an obscure requirement I would think a slightly less obscure requirement would get a look in!

23rd Oct 2009, 22:04
Start filling in ASIRs folks. It's the only way that the system will be changed.

23rd Oct 2009, 22:18
How did ICAO/CASA drive this change?

Apologies... it was Eurocontrol, FAA and AirServices Australia. Post edited accordingly. Nonetheless it is not simply QF attemping to gain competative advantage from blinding other pilots.

24th Oct 2009, 00:43
Geeeeeezzzz, how many different threads are going to be started on this. :ugh:

As Keg has said in response to every thread on this issue, it is a SOP and hence there is no use asking line pilots from discontinuing the practice!

If you don't like it do something worthwile apart from bleating on pprune.

24th Oct 2009, 02:31
Waste of bandwidth Trevor.

Do a search next time and see if the crappy little topic you are going to start is ALREADY THERE.


24th Oct 2009, 11:33
Sounds like poor airmanship.

Feather #3
24th Oct 2009, 12:06
FGD135, you have to realise that airmanship is no more.

It's been replaced by SOP's which completely cover all aspects of every operation thus rendering the officials of any operator fully innocent of any potential liability for negligence.:rolleyes:

Can you even imagine what would happen in this world if commonsense [aka airmanship] were left to prevail among that undisciplined rabble know as Line Pilots??:eek: The World would end!

It's only when you are let into the BIG PICTURE that you can even begin to grasp these things.:cool:

So, Vale Airmanship and stick to those SOP's; that way, you'll never be wrong!:ugh:

G'day ;)

Shot Nancy
24th Oct 2009, 12:10
SOPs are not ROE.
If you think it is a not a good idea - don't do it.

24th Oct 2009, 12:14
Sounds like poor airmanship.

Write to:

Captain Peter Wilson
Chief Pilot
Qantas Airways Ltd
203 Coward St
Mascot, NSW, 2020


1800 020 616
Tel: (02) 6257 4150
Tel International: +61 2 6257 4150
Fax: (02) 6247 3117
Email: [email protected]

REPCON Confidential Reporting:1800 020 505.

I'll say it again. Only if enough people complain- in places where it will actually do some good as opposed to here on PPRUNE- will something be done.

Until that time I have a choice. I can operate as per the SOP and potentially affect someone else's night vision (although given how many lights there are around an airfield I'd find that doubtful anyway but I acknowledge the annoyance factor) or I can have tea and bikkies for not following the SOP that is supposedly worlds best practise and an FAA/ JAA recommendation.

Hmmm. Which should I choose. :rolleyes: :ugh:

If you think it is a not a good idea - don't do it.

:rolleyes: :ugh:

Iron Bar
24th Oct 2009, 20:27
In this case the sop is a horses ass. (Or an asses ass if you prefer) does not enhance safety at all and as has been pointed out, can be a hazard. Basic airmanship should NEVER be userped by piontless arse covering regulation.

Nothing to stop a polite request over the rt "can you please turn your lights off shaggs?" most would happily do so. If not ASIR, stuff em.:ok:

24th Oct 2009, 23:09
I'll say it again. Only if enough people complain- in places where it will actually do some good as opposed to here on PPRuNe- will something be done.

Complaining on PPRuNe has worked Keg. You have provided the answer on how to effect change!


24th Oct 2009, 23:21
Basic airmanship should NEVER be userped by piontless arse covering regulation

So you're suggesting that Keg aim for a Pyrrhic victory in his tea and bickies meeting. :rolleyes:

If it's in the Ops Manual and it isn't about to kill you I would suggest you would have to follow it regardless of what your opinion is.

Iron Bar
25th Oct 2009, 01:02
Ummm no. But if you can see that the quiet pointless (I think we all agree) use of wing lights is blinding and or pissing off the Virgin guys at the holding point . . . . . Tun them off?????

If you want to get wound up about manuals. The CAR, CAO and ops manual also contains a few paragraphs giving the captain a fair bit of discretionary latitude.

Bet you don't cover both ears with your headset?? Another unpractical ass covering oh&s sop.

Tea and bickies? For turning off wing lights?:rolleyes:

Come on Nev.

Capt Kremin
25th Oct 2009, 01:10
Don't you just love it when a new management proclamation is justified as "World's best Practice." That effectively means, "Don't argue!"

QF management issued a FSO recently regarding the Radio Pratique pilots must observe when returning to the country and informing Quarantine of illness on board.

Not a lot of thought went into this FSO which required pilots to report if they were carrying a live animal into Australia and if an animal had died on board during the flight...

I realise that this requirement did not originate in QF, but it really should have been questioned before release to the troops.

25th Oct 2009, 02:02
I don't see the problem CK, just send the SOs down to have a look? :}

25th Oct 2009, 02:22
If you want to get wound up about manuals. The CAR, CAO and ops manual also contains a few paragraphs giving the captain a fair bit of discretionary latitude

However the ops manual takes precedence over all those things. I'm not saying I agree with the light policy, it's daft, I'm just saying that's the way it is. If you want a tricky issue have a look at the jumpseat policy. The CAR says one thing the ops manuals another.

Tea and bickies? For turning off wing lights?

As a isolated incident probably not. However after maybe a few minor issues before that it could be used as an excuse for a meeting. I have certainly heard of worse reasons for being pulled in.

25th Oct 2009, 04:54
Taxying at ADL the other night and had a QF 737 taxying opposite direction parallel and saw he was lit up like a xmas tree. Thought to self "here we go another blinder coming up!" As they approached abeam us wing inspection and rwy turnoff lights went off. Once passed on they went again. That is common sense and courtesy. Thanks boys/girls for that, just don't know why your heavier cousins don't seem to think the same way.

25th Oct 2009, 06:15
The recently revamped QF lights policy originally did not require the wing lights to be on unless entering/crossing a runway. I believe this element was based on FAA/Eurocontrol/AsA recommendations.

It was then revised to require the wing lights be on at all times during taxi to 10,000ft and vice versa. Apparently this was after many comments about excessive swithcing required during taxi. This revision moved away from the "Worlds Best Practice".

I agree with Keg, if this is a problem for others please put it in writing in the form of ASIR/REPCON and perhaps some external pressure can be placed on QF to change it.

25th Oct 2009, 06:28
Sked, that I can (and do) accommodate and often 'cycle' the lights through to make sure we still have some forward facing lights for us to utilise but avoid blinding whoever is coming the other way. Maybe the 737 is a bit different but the wing lights on a 767 point backward so I'm buggered if I know how it's going to affect opposite direction traffic and thus I've never bothered to turn them off for people going the other way. :confused:

Bit difficult for me to turn them off in consideration of others at other time given that I can't see behind me. Ask nicely and I'll turn them off for a bit but I can't simply ignore the SOP and not turn them on given that it's not all the time they're a problem.

I should point out too that we occasionally taxi out behind our own aircraft also and whilst I acknowledge that my flight deck is a bit higher than some (most) others, it also means that those wing inspection lights are at my eye level. Whilst I haven't done much flying this calendar year (and therefore have done even less at night) I haven't experienced it to be the issue that many make it out to be.

Either way, the mechanism for change has been explained. :ok:

25th Oct 2009, 07:15
Notice a few now taxiing with the strobes on as well.

25th Oct 2009, 08:12
Well those lights do get you going the other way Keg and did you ever think about aircraft holding short whilst you pass in front right to left or vicky verka? This happens all the time and especially in Sydney. They get you right in the eyes and it is annoying. I understand it is SOP but a bit of common sense surely comes into play? Having said that I will put in the appropriate reports both to QF and CASA next time it happens complete with dates and times just so there's a paper trail if you think it'll help. :ok:

25th Oct 2009, 22:13
Well it would have to because the Ops manual is a CASA approved document. Our ops manual has things it that are contradictory to the CAR's. If it went to court I would assume the Ops manual being the CASA approved document could be used. For example we have a lower TO minima approved by CASA so every low viz takeoff is illegal if it goes to court then?

Led Zep
26th Oct 2009, 01:29
I never thought that CASA really "approved" an Ops manual, they merely "accept" it and it will be on your head come investigation time (if any), not theirs. :confused:

26th Oct 2009, 04:28
Op's manual's are only permitted to be equal to, or more restrictive than the regulations set out by CASA.

Op's manual's are a nightmare. The changing of one single word in the op's manual, can not just be done and then a new page inserted, it is required to be passed by CASA, and then a new copy issued to them.

Ops manuals are not just an 'accepted' item, it requires CASA's approval. CASA have a copy of every company (that hold an AOC) op's manual. If a company changes, updates, upgrades an ops manual, an audit is usually done, and a new copy given to CASA.

Good time's.

Led Zep
26th Oct 2009, 04:41
Gobetter, perhaps I could have phrased my post better. I guess I'm trying to say that if the proverbial hits the fan and your Ops Manual differs in regard to regulation X, it is up to you as an operator to defend why your manual is different CASA regs, regardless that CASA has "approved" your manual.

Apologies for thread drift. :cool:

Iron Bar
26th Oct 2009, 12:52
Nev et QF al. Please just use your good judgement and airmanship we can assume you have gained over the years and . . . . TURN THE LIGHTS OFF!

When you think it is prudent.

Thank you.

4th Nov 2009, 23:32


It does seem that a few more airlines' collision avoidance lighting policies have also changed following FAA/Eurocontrol recommendations.

Maybe QF haven't just gone out on a limb and made it all up ?! :}

As for being sensible about when to turn it off, I entirely agree. The funny thing is though, do they REALLY bother you? I personally don't find it a problem to look away from the light as I would if sitting at the holding point and a landing aircraft flew right in front of me, lights blazing...

As always, to each, their own...

5th Apr 2011, 07:10
I thought I'd bring this up for some updated discussion.

I am really sick of the lack of airmanship being displayed by 99% of QF crew who couldn't care less about what effect their :mad: taxi lights are having on other aircraft.

Instead of sitting in your seats giggling and chuckling about what your stupid lights are doing to others... TURN THE DAMN THING'S OFF!!!

Most of you guys are acting like children in regards to this.

You don't blind your dispatcher when you turn on to the bay (day/night) so why do you feel the need to blind another aircraft? :=

5th Apr 2011, 08:28
Gunger - put in an ASIR or something, mate. We think it's as big a crock as you do. Guys do flip the switches off occasionally, hell, I did only 2 days ago. That being said, we are not going to spend the whole of the taxi trying to work out which aircraft are affected and then cycling the switches on and off a dozen times. Sometimes just not practical.

As for your comment re "giggling and chuckling" and acting like children, well.... give me a break, that's just insulting. Geez. I haven't seen a SINGLE occasion of anything of the sort! On the contrary, it's more an attitude of resignation, one of "put the bloody things on, the idiots really have taken over the asylum."

Put an ASIR in and you might see change in about, oh, 3 years, after it's worked its way through CASA, ATSB and half a dozen Qantas committees.

5th Apr 2011, 08:31
I'm blinded by lights of QF aircraft as much as from anyone else. Not sure it's a QF specific problem?!?!?! We are talking at night here though aren't we?

piston broke again
5th Apr 2011, 08:51
Wing inspection lights are exactly that. For inspecting the wing predominantly for ice buildup. Use them for that. If it's SOP to keep them on during taxi, fine. But common sense and airmanship dictates you turn them off when blinding others (ie. Like a taxi light facing a landing aircraft or taxi light facing ground personnel whilst aligning for the airbridge). Quite simple really. Common sense unfortunately is not that common anymore.

5th Apr 2011, 09:36
In defence of QF crew, just last night witnessed a QF 767 in SYD turn all forward lighting off as they held at B8 whilst traffic vacated 16R on B7 .Then only a few minutes again a very courteous J* crew did similar as their lights were about to fill my startled eye's. Nice to see airmanship is alive out there .

5th Apr 2011, 10:02
Gunger :

sitting in your seats giggling and chuckling about what your stupid lights are doing to others

You've got to be joking, right? You really do have an over-enthusiastic imagination...

5th Apr 2011, 10:54
Not being long out of G.A I still turn the NAV lights off during daylight hours, as that is what my old employer wanted. To save the bulbs.
Then I was pulled up on it during a recent check ride. The reason?, CASA have dictated that if you are in cloud, you are in low visibility conditions and should have your lights on.
To the pinhead in CASA who has never flown outside of the circuit and truely believes that this practice is actually practical and enhances safety, I say, if I need my lights on when in cloud to alert another aircraft to my presence, then the 2 of us are about to have a real bad day. Don`t worry that as an airliner, I am always in controlled airspace, I have TCAS and fly under IFR, so any traffic would be passed on to me anyway.

5th Apr 2011, 11:32
Not all RPT operates in controlled airspace.

How much VFR traffic do you get in Class G?

Are you guaranteed to get all traffic in Class E?

5th Apr 2011, 11:56
Guidance of wise, obedience by fools...............

Unfortunately when working for a large employer , the lowest denominator drives procedure and policy.

5th Apr 2011, 12:50
Not being long out of G.A I still turn the NAV lights off during daylight hours, as that is what my old employer wanted. To save the bulbs.
Then I was pulled up on it during a recent check ride. The reason?, CASA have dictated that if you are in cloud, you are in low visibility conditions and should have your lights on.


As in, are you sure the checkie wasn't blowing smoke up your a$$/making that up? Never heard of it nor is it SOP on any jet I've flown in oz.
FWIW, in 738s when you turn on the strobes the navs come on automatically anyway, never forget em :) (i think thats how it works)