PDA

View Full Version : Shamrock A330 and New York tracon run-in


SliabhLuachra
24th Jul 2018, 15:47
Sorry if this is the wrong place.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w1r3XZQc4Zo&lc=z22qv3pajvvlzh2k3acdp4321e0cjr5xf4mvzhahzjlw03c010c

Interesting that ATC scolds a pilot for something like this - pilot stuck to his guns at least. Do NY ATC (and the US?) have wx radars?

MCDU2
24th Jul 2018, 16:16
Doppler radar overlaid on their radar screens as far as I know. Still crew has got to play the cards they are dealt and if the WX radar is showing a build up then they have to follow their guts. Also depends who is ahead that you are "following" on the departures. Lots of cowboys out there so just because the pack headed out on the same track doesn't make it the safest course of action.

Nails
24th Jul 2018, 16:56
I was fourth or fifth in line over a mountainous route in IMC with the concern being potential for icing. Everyone else got through ok but I got clobbered and had to turn around (the airplane had no de-ice equipment, nor did the others in front of me) and descend below MEA for a period to keep from stalling. It was the worst ice I had ever seen. So, just because the others got through ok is no guarantee that you will...

Smooth Airperator
24th Jul 2018, 17:29
Going into the East Coast, we recently got distracted by some very dramatic weather returns on the radar of our brand new plane. Although it was raining pretty solid with reduced vis, we could see the coast line and plenty of aircraft were going through the same areas. WX radar increasingly outputting garbage. No amount of manual mode playing got rid of the colours. The old ones were better.

jurassicjockey
24th Jul 2018, 18:04
What an embarassment. Tough job in New York, but no excuse for that display of crap. Sometimes tracon forgets why they're there.

Talkdownman
24th Jul 2018, 18:30
He'd never validate in London Terminal Control...

FlyingStone
24th Jul 2018, 18:40
The controller seems to have forgotten who has the final authority over the disposition of the aircraft. Fake returns or not, if you are not 100% sure, you just go around it. And if some cowboy is happy to fly through red/magenta returns, that doesn't mean everybody else has to as well.

Stan Woolley
24th Jul 2018, 19:01
It would be interesting to see what controllers have to say. I guess this’ll end up in ATC forum.

At first listen I am with the Shamrock.

er340790
24th Jul 2018, 19:22
Aviate. Navigate. Communicate.

End of.

Private jet
24th Jul 2018, 20:31
ATC, despite the "C" standing for control, is, ultimately an advisory service. It is the responsibility of the PIC to get the aircraft safely between A & B, and to take whatever measures he or she sees fit in order to do that. Of course non standard actions need to be justified but it is important to remember that the air traffic service is there to assist the pilot, not the other way around. If controllers are unhappy with the restrictions in airspace then they need to address their superiors and not get short with the flightcrew.

Maxfli
24th Jul 2018, 21:05
I have often found some of NYC ATC to be abrasive and overly confrontational.
I don’t get the bit from the controller where he says “you got yourself into this”.
Departed off 22R followed by the controller giving him 120deg left turn which the Commander declined.

I have a fair idea what Mrs Brown would say to the controller........... that’s nice.

webkit-fake-url://23015472-f42a-4c4c-a20a-efd6ace620fa/imagejpeg

BluSdUp
24th Jul 2018, 21:39
Air Traffic Control , sounds more like Out Of Control to me.
Unusual attitude for ATC. Unable to recover!
Needs retraining.
ATS is there for me ,not the other way around. Services being the word.

,

His dudeness
24th Jul 2018, 22:21
Aggressive and arrogant.

I bet the lads wrote the ASR on the way home. The controller needs a reality check.

Hmmm. Maybe aggressive but for sure under considerable pressure to get airplanes out of his "little airfield". Wether its especially helpful to write a report about this kind of chickens..., Iīm not sure.

Sailvi767
24th Jul 2018, 22:39
The controller had no intention of writing a report until the crew brought up to expect a phone call.

His dudeness
24th Jul 2018, 23:15
As I unterderstood it, the crew wanted to write a report, not the controller...

jack11111
24th Jul 2018, 23:19
As my son would say, "that controller is messed-up, Dad."

svhar
24th Jul 2018, 23:32
Some years ago I was cleared for takeoff (757) after a 747 at JFK, the controller was not satisfied when I did not start the takeoff roll 30 seconds after the 747 rotated and told me the next time when I was in New York I should advise the tower if I was not ready. This was a few weeks before the AA 587 lost its vertical stabilizer due to wake turbulence. 2 minutes after a heavy our SOP said. I did just that. I did not respond when he told me to change to departure and wished me a nice flight.

172_driver
24th Jul 2018, 23:58
Would be interesting to hear a NY TRACON controller's view of this. There might be another side of the story that European pilots are unaware of. It's a commander's prerogative to choose the route of flight of course. But when things are heated, as they were, you better be avoiding for good reason. No "for comfort". Buckle up!

The video is a good click bait, but we can't reality tell what was going on in the involved parties' heads.

Phantom Driver
25th Jul 2018, 00:48
The video is a good click bait, but we can't reality tell what was going on in the involved parties' heads.

To be honest , I thought the controller was doing a pretty good job of sorting out a developing mess .I have found NY controllers to be a professional bunch of guys and certainly accommodating when it comes to weather deviation requests .

While not casting aspersions on Shamrock, I have to say that what you see on the radar often depends on your technique ; "auto gain" on modern radars can paint a dire picture when compared to when you play with manual gain/tilt . I have seen guys deviating when there was very little showing on our radar , or looking out of the window , even at night .
(Old adage -" one peep is worth a thousand sweeps ".)

Bottom line though --Shamrock Commanders decision is final ..Just a pity he got upset at having to orbit over JFK to fit in with traffic . That airspace gets kinda busy , especially when there is weather around....

drunk_pilot
25th Jul 2018, 01:23
A couple of points:

Firstly, modern airborne radar have Turbulence mode as well as weather (WX+T). This is real time information that is not available on a controllerís overlay. The rainfall intensity doesnít necessarily have to be red for there to be sufficient vertical velocity to indicate turbulence (magenta) on the flight crewís display.

Further, with convective weather, the suituation can change very quickly. The preceding aircraft may very well have not had any adverse indications at the time. Itís very inappropriate for the controller to suggest that since the others went through it, you should too! You only need to look at the Delta 191 accident at DFW. The light jet that flew through the same cell just moments prior to DAL191 reported a smooth ride..

My 2 cents.

faoiarvok
25th Jul 2018, 02:27
Controller here (not in the US).

I donít have any weather overlay on my screen, I rely on pilots telling me what they need to remain clear in order to provide safe clearances that flight crew are willing to follow.

Fair play to Shamrock crew saying no to a clearance they werenít happy with.

They do look like ďpunishment vectorsĒ to me, but even if we take the controller at his word that he needs to hold Shamrock to co-ordinate an alternative routing, the controllerís immediate jump to angry lecture in response to a perfectly reasonable ďunableĒ from the crew seems very unprofessional.

Meester proach
25th Jul 2018, 07:56
I’ve had similar there when avoiding wx, they couldn’t detect.

just sums up NY and NY ATC. Rude aggressive, confrontational.

i have to tell the new FOs to stand their ground and not be bulldozed by this lot .

The Fat Controller
25th Jul 2018, 09:35
@svhar, the AA587 accident was caused by the inappropriate actions of a pilot to the wake turbulence event.

He stomped on the rudder pedals to such an extent that the sideways load exceeded the limits of the vertical stabiliser attachments.

As for this little ATC/Pilot dialogue, these things happen, but as an ex ATC, I'll side with the Irish this time.

ACMS
25th Jul 2018, 10:06
Pathetic controlling, NY ATC should compensate Air Lingus for the wasted vectors costing fuel.

ridiculous

73qanda
25th Jul 2018, 10:44
The comment “ you got yourself into this” was unprofessional. That’s that. One party was professional, the other party was unprofessional. Simple.

Una Due Tfc
25th Jul 2018, 11:17
The comment ď you got yourself into thisĒ was unprofessional. Thatís that. One party was professional, the other party was unprofessional. Simple.

Iím ATC and I agree 100% with this. Crew did the right thing.

Timpsi
25th Jul 2018, 11:58
I listen to the NY TRACON quite a lot and this guy is very hectic and not always professional. I understand the workload and all that, but still, you have to keep your cool and be professional in a hostile environment like that.

This controller doesn't represent the TRACON as a whole, there are many good controllers over there!

suninmyeyes
25th Jul 2018, 13:10
I have flown into and out of JFK quite a bit and generally the controllers do a good job of moving a lot of aircraft without delays. This controller was probably limited with the options available to him due airspace restrictions. However the controller says "you're gonna turn right to a heading of 080" which is confusing because he should either say "turn right now heading 080" or I will be turning you shortly to 080". Not surprisingly the Shamrock queries whether he has to turn to which the controller replies "You have to follow to Greki that is right underneath you" . That response is of no help at all so it is no surprise that the Shamrock pilot yet again has to query the instruction and the controller then gives an intelligible reply.

I have no doubt the controller could have been clearer but I have sympathy for both sides as the controller might have just been trying to fit him in with subsequent departures and the controller's instructions may not have been as penal as they came across as. To me the controller is stressed due to the pressure of his job and not directly angry with the pilot.

B2N2
25th Jul 2018, 13:32
Iíll be the devils advocate and side with the controller.
This is JFK and youíre completely messing up his flow.
Other headings would have been possible.
Negotiate before you pick a fight.
Turn 080
Unable how about 120?
Turn 120

Problem solved.

Del Prado
25th Jul 2018, 14:57
6 of one and half a dozen of the other.
but if the weather was that bad Iíd be tempted to stop all departures or at least put a big MDI on.

i appreciate the Ďcaptain is ultimate authorityí and Ďtale wagging the dogí type responses above but itís not just about the one aircraft, itís the sector, the airfield, even the whole network and there is a small but significant section of the pilot community that think they can take any weather avoidance without a significant knock on effect to their colleagues.

Iím not saying thatís what happened here but when say, one out of five aircraft avoid while the other four (in front and behind) fly straight through, it does make me sorry there isnít more standard pilot training for weather avoidance.
It would make a huge difference to weather delays and flight safety.

tubby linton
25th Jul 2018, 15:34
Delprado, Delta flight 191 of 1985 showed that convective weather that was traversable by the preceding aircraft rapidly became deadly for a wide body three miles in trail.
Assuming that it is acceptable because some aircraft had flown the route, and we do not know how long before that was, is not a good strategy when there is significant convective weather.The US NWS give the life cycle of a thunderstorm as thirty minutes. The previous aircraft may have seen it whilst it was still building as cummulus, and not the weather shamrock saw.
I believe that a groundstop was put in place after the event.

jurassicjockey
25th Jul 2018, 15:36
"Standard pilot training for weather avoidance". How do you account for the variations in radar equipment and what they show. Experience is a huge factor as well. Reading a radar display has a lot of subleties.
Maybe lets start with some standardized atc around the world. If the SID is runway heading, and you require a 90 degree turn off of that through an area of weather, maybe a heads up through the tower to your departures. We're not mind readers, and when you point us at an area of weather with no advance warning, then a cautious man should hesitate. Maybe the previous 5 went through and regretted it. I know I've done that in the past. Lived to tell the tale.
Yelling won't fix your mistakes, and creates an unsafe scenario.

His dudeness
25th Jul 2018, 17:14
Point of view from an ATCO working in a very restrictive airspace: If all other planes (preceding + following) can route along a particular path, I will tell the pilot everyone else has taken the heading except you.

From an psychological standpoint (CRM and all that stuff) Iīd say that this is not the best possible thing to do. IMHO.

Del Prado
25th Jul 2018, 19:22
Whenever WX avoidance gets discussed a lot of the pilot community view their right to weather avoid as sacrosanct and purely a matter of extreme flight safety.
However there are a (small but significant) group of pilots that want to avoid the slightest bump for passenger comfort. When the sector is quiet Iíll do my upmost to accommodate that but in my experience pilots still ask for the Ďcomfortí avoidance when itís too busy.
As someone said above, itís a matter of experience, and thatís also true from the ATC side. Itís pretty easy to judge (to a high degree of certainty) what requests are for comfort and what ones are for safety with a little experience and I donít think the requests are always made with enough consideration to business of sector or consequences to the network and therefore delays to other flights.

And Iím not having a go at the pilots in this incident with those comments.

As for standardising training for pilots, Iíve had three aircraft on top of each other 1000í apart approaching weather. One requests left 10, the next 15 right and the third says nothing. Surely itís best to all do the same thing, even if in the captainís view itís the less good (2nd) option?
Standardisation of RT requests would help too.

ĒRequest 10 Right/Left for weather.Ē Is great.

Ēthereís a little bit of a build up about 8 miles ahead, will you be turning us before then? And if not could we have 10 right now otherwise weíll have to go 25 left and round it from the other side?Ē
Add in the callsign and the ums and ahs and each aircraft on the frequency has moved the best part of a mile in the time taken to say all that. At best thatís the spacing missed, possibly another aircraft is 1 mile closer to his weather or Iím a mile late in giving avoiding action because someone has turned without asking/telling.

Iím sure there are many more examples but then the vast majority of pilots reading are already very good at this stuff, itís just that itís not trickling down and a bit more training and standardisation could help us all.

Check Airman
25th Jul 2018, 19:53
https://jetcareers.com/forums/threads/shamrock-104-heavy-vs-nyc-atc.262634/page-2#post-2801516

Input from a colleague of the controller in question.

In my opinion, the controller could've handled it a bit better, and the pilot couldn't realistically expect to fly runway heading for 15 miles in NYC.

Juan Tugoh
25th Jul 2018, 20:17
Even in busy NYC airspace if an avoid for weather is needed, in the opinion of the aircraft commander, then a deviation is required. ATC here were maxed out and were annoyed that his plan did not match the view of the person legally responsible for the safe conduct of the flight and the lives of those onboard.

Pilots do know that weather avoids make ATC work harder so donít tend to ask for them ďjust becauseĒ. I have sat at the end of the runway looking at a massive cell 2miles off the end of the runway and declined to depart. A local lo co did depart with an immediate sharp turn, he avoided the weather. I was not prepared to risk the lives of my passengers in a wide body, he was in his 737. We were both correct and ATC can go hang if they disagree - itís not their lives on the line.

ATC here were out of order and need to rethink - but we can all get like that when we are up to arse in alligators. Maybe a little review and rethinking is required - nobody needs the atttude. The end result was safe, ATC got stressed as they ran out out capacity, itís not the end of the world, we are all human.

mach92
25th Jul 2018, 22:41
Overall I give the NY controllers a good grade. Like Shamrock they have gotten pissed off with me not accepting a heading with rapidly developing weather. I just tell them unable offer a suggested heading but both times issued holding. As the PIC I am not flying into a level 5 cell even if its low level crap.

A and C
25th Jul 2018, 22:58
There is a lot of truth in what Del Prado has to say.

Faire d'income
26th Jul 2018, 13:47
"As for standardising training for pilots, I’ve had three aircraft on top of each other 1000’ apart approaching weather. One requests left 10, the next 15 right and the third says nothing. Surely it’s best to all do the same thing, even if in the captain’s view it’s the less good (2nd) option?"

Standard training for pilots for weather would be fine if there was standard weather. It does't work like that. Cells shapes are often very irregular and very dynamic in that they can grow rapidly, in different directions, right in front of your eyes. Interpreting these shapes visually can lead to different decisions and this can all happen quickly. You can fly through a 40,000' CB without a ripple and get absolutely battered by an 8,000' cell. Equally you can make a judgment call, with the best intentions and need to change it a minute later.

The following video is obviously not in real time but you can get the idea why sequential flights might want different courses:

https://www.videoblocks.com/video/towering-cumulus-clouds-rapidly-grow-into-cumulonimbus-on-a-hot-summer-day-aqbcnje

In an ideal world pilots would be able to make early decisions and pass these promptly to ATC and everyone could come up with a timely, workable, agreed plan. But there are days where that just doesn't work.

Regarding the weather radar, manufacturers and subsequently many aviation authorities overestimate the accuracy of their products. While they are very useful tools, and they have improved slowly over the years, they should not be relied upon exclusively. The resolution used for aviation weather radars is only really useful for rain and wet snow. Even on max settings they are very poor at detecting dry hail or any icing. As has been pointed out here, and it in the US AIM, ATC wx radars do not show turbulence but most aircraft radars do. These can also pretty poor as they frequently lead you happily down a path and then suddenly give a strong indication of turbulence right in front of you. Very often when your eyes get a clear view of the weather you will reject what the radar is showing you. Experience in these scenarios is invaluable.

Also, some people here seem to forget that there are passengers on board. The bigger the aircraft, the more nervous passengers you are likely to have on board and they can really freak out in the turbulence associated with flying into a cell. While pilots, cabin crew and most passengers will be fine with the roller coaster ride, crews have to think of their customers. Imagine throwing a medical emergency, due to anxiety or whatever, into the mix in that recording!

Finally, I must compliment the NY ATC people as usually they are excellent in assisting with bad weather requests. But personally I would be disappointed with the service in that recording.

Sailvi767
26th Jul 2018, 16:15
"Standard pilot training for weather avoidance". How do you account for the variations in radar equipment and what they show. Experience is a huge factor as well. Reading a radar display has a lot of subleties.
Maybe lets start with some standardized atc around the world. If the SID is runway heading, and you require a 90 degree turn off of that through an area of weather, maybe a heads up through the tower to your departures. We're not mind readers, and when you point us at an area of weather with no advance warning, then a cautious man should hesitate. Maybe the previous 5 went through and regretted it. I know I've done that in the past. Lived to tell the tale.
Yelling won't fix your mistakes, and creates an unsafe scenario.

Shamrock stated they were familiar with NYC flying. The departure off 22R for transatlantic flights is always runway heading with tower followed by a left turn east almost as soon as you switch departure. You can’t turn right or continue straight because of both departure flows from LGA and 31LeftKE departures which make a hard left to avoid LGA. If I can’t turn left due to weather I inform tower before accepting a TO clearance. The weather overlay seems to show no weather issues with a left turn and flights before and after had no issues. North of LGA and JFK was getting hammered which would make the southern area extremely busy airspace. I doubt the vectors were for spite and they probably had to suspend departures from 31L or LGA depending on configuration. NYC atc has very good weather overlays and they discontinue departures quickly when weather blocks a route. They also provide calls as to WX intensity ahead on a routine baises. They use terminology level 1 through 6 precipitation.
You can make some inference from Delta 191 at DFW but it’s slight at best. One was a aircraft in approach configuration at low altitude descending at minimum speed and the other was a clean aircraft climbing at a much higher altitude and speed. From a safety standpoint a apples to oranges situation.

Farrell
26th Jul 2018, 17:26
Always be wary of the guy who can't just go to the next sector, but instead has to say his piece about his 'experience'.
It's a disagreement between two people doing a job. The option of not following the pack was two orbits and the usual New Yohhk controller treatment.
Par for the course.
They were given the hand off to the next sector, so just shut up and go. If your boss is going to talk to his boss that's fine - switch over and write the ASR.
The only reason to tell the controller you're reporting the incident is to posture and big yourself up.
Playground stuff.

tubby linton
26th Jul 2018, 17:37
Shamrock stated they were familiar with NYC flying. The departure off 22R for transatlantic flights is always runway heading with tower followed by a left turn east almost as soon as you switch departure. You canít turn right or continue straight because of both departure flows from LGA and 31LeftKE departures which make a hard left to avoid LGA. If I canít turn left due to weather I inform tower before accepting a TO clearance. The weather overlay seems to show no weather issues with a left turn and flights before and after had no issues. North of LGA and JFK was getting hammered which would make the southern area extremely busy airspace. I doubt the vectors were for spite and they probably had to suspend departures from 31L or LGA depending on configuration. NYC atc has very good weather overlays and they discontinue departures quickly when weather blocks a route. They also provide calls as to WX intensity ahead on a routine baises. They use terminology level 1 through 6 precipitation.
You can make some inference from Delta 191 at DFW but itís slight at best. One was a aircraft in approach configuration at low altitude descending at minimum speed and the other was a clean aircraft climbing at a much higher altitude and speed. From a safety standpoint a apples to oranges situation.


The reference to DL191 was to illustrate the sudden changes in convective weather. A Learjet flew through the weather shortly before and survived but the heavy behind it didnít as it was hit by a microburst.

Faire d'income
26th Jul 2018, 18:53
Listen to the recording again.

The previous aircraft, a Delta, requested a further left turn due to the weather of 070˚. The Shamrock was next and was given a heading of 100˚ (presumably the Delta was given something similar) but refused the turn due to the weather. The weather may have been moving north or north east as would be common, especially if the wind was down the runway 22. Looking at the screen this appears to be the same weather as the Delta had requested avoidance for, granted the Delta opted to pass the weather to the north while the Shamrock chose to pass it to the south. Also according to the screen color coding, there were different levels of intensity in the weather, not simply the 'lightest' one.

It is certainly not correct to suggest that the 330 crew were alone in their concerns regarding the weather, as the controller seems to suggest. I'd like to hear the recording for the previous few departures.

pattern_is_full
27th Jul 2018, 07:05
They were given the hand off to the next sector, so just shut up and go. If your boss is going to talk to his boss that's fine - switch over and write the ASR.
The only reason to tell the controller you're reporting the incident is to posture and big yourself up.
Playground stuff.

Yep. No compliments for the controller, but the pilot just sounded like he'd got his big ones caught in the yoke doing all those turns (oh, no, wait - A330 ;) )

de fumo in flammam
27th Jul 2018, 08:27
I agree. Attitude and RT from Shamrock was poor throughout, and the controller is just having to deal with an unexpected disruption to the flow, and slot him back in (also a cheek of shamrock to be requesting the direct when he had gotten tired of the hold, and ironic that the direct would have taken him the same route as he would have gone anyway) .

Reading the weather radar is as much an art as a science, borne of worldwide experience, and despite his on air posturing, a shamrock pilot does not often get to see the huge and intense stuff such as is found in Asia and Africa. In fact, my observation is that European pilots often deviate round the smallest returns, and what's worse, do it in a demanding way like they're asserting their own self importance. I also often hear pilots in europe carrying out their own deviations around fairly minor returns, without first getting permission, which quite rightly sometimes gets a rebuke from the controller.

N90-EWR
27th Jul 2018, 08:47
As a NY Tracon controller, reading some of the misinformation in some of the replies in this thread has been very entertaining, but it also reminds me that very few people actually know just how complex our airspace is. There is a lot of background context that's always missed on situations like this one. I will agree that he could had phrased it differently, but having been myself in similar situations before, I can understand why he reacted that way.

We are in emergency crisis with the staffing situation here. We are working 10 hour shifts, mandatory 6 day workweeks with longer times on combined radar positions, and shorter breaks. Add that to the frustration of watching 1 aircraft deviate way differently than all the previous aircraft just before it, understand that there is a human being behind the screen, not a machine. Sometimes emotions can get even the best of us. He has over 3 decades of experience and is retiring at the end of this year. very cool guy, he's not a douche. Though he didn't do anything wrong from the operational point of view, I'm sure he would probably word it differently if he had a chance to go back in time.

I'm sure that there are other busy places by volume, but I doubt that there is another place in the world with this many high volume airports so close to each other. We many not be the busiest (though we're up there) but we are definitely the most complex. A deviation in other busy places may be not be such a big deal other than extra frequency workload, but here it's very likely to put you in direct conflict with other traffic.

That particular shift we were in swap and GREKI was one of the few fixes that were open to ALL N90 airports, so departures out of EWR, LGA, JFK, HPN, TEB, MMU (those last two go over Brezy first then Greki), plus all other satellites were being launched with timed intervals. When the Air Lingus got up, and turned the wrong way, they missed their gap reference the other departures from the other airports, and he couldn't just drive through LGA airspace with all the traffic that was there already confined tighter because of the weather. We do NOT penalize the aircraft flying their routes for the one that didn't comply. The best option is to do exactly what he did, hold him until another gap that the aircraft can meet becomes available. Our airspace is so tight that we do not have holding patterns within N90 airspace. If we need to hold, we have to issue box pattern vectors like he did. All our holding patterns are on the outter fixes in center airspace.

I could go on a longer and more detailed explanation of why he did what he did move by move, but it would require more time than I'm willing to commit to this.

suninmyeyes
27th Jul 2018, 09:03
N90-EWR

Many thanks for that. Most interesting to hear it from your point of view. It is pretty much what I expected. Clearly there was stress and frustration on both sides.

stilton
27th Jul 2018, 09:04
The Captain has the ultimate responsibility
for the aircraft and passengers, he or she has total authority for its operation


Some posters seem to have forgotten that


A controller, no matter how busy he is doesnít have the option to overide that


Perhaps this flight didnít fit in with his plan, well, make a new one, the dynamics of convective activity demand flexibility



Ideally this should be a cooperative effort between Pilots and Controllers but if ATC wonít help but worse points you towards weather youíre not comfortable with you have to speak up and take action


As this Captain did, from the recording itís apparent he stayed very calm, unlike the controller who aggravated the situation by loosing his cool


The Ďyou got yourself in this situationí statement was ridiculous and implied this controller was going to screw around with this flight to alleviate his obvious frustration



Highly unprofessional, he seemed to forget those blips have people in them



I donít blame the Captain at all for his parting
remarks, they were appropriate and very restrained, unlike this controller


Iíve flown into all three NY airports since 1987 and had some rare testy exchanges on the radio but nothing like this

73qanda
27th Jul 2018, 09:11
We are in emergency crisis with the staffing situation here. We are working 10 hour shifts, mandatory 6 day workweeks with longer times on combined radar positions, and shorter breaks
Thats the most interesting bit of the thread to me. What’s the reason? Same as the bottom half of the world where modern management types achieve KPI’s by running leaner than lean and not investing in training and recruitment thus boosting their own bank accounts?

N90-EWR
27th Jul 2018, 09:17
Perhaps this flight didnít fit in with his plan, well, make a new one, the dynamics of convective activity demand flexibility


He did make a new plan, which is the same plan any of us would had done: Hold him until a gap to go back over GREKI became available. The only thing he did wrong was getting into a verbal contest with the pilot, which I agree was unnecessary. I'd argue that the "my boss will call your boss" parting shot from the pilot was also uncalled for as well.

Monarch Man
27th Jul 2018, 09:28
Its a team effort, but until the controller gets to ride the beast too wherever it might end up, controllers are there ultimately in an advisory capacity with the implicit trust of the crews to provide a service.
There are some wonderful and talented people working in the NY area doing a tough job in ATC, this guy appears to either be having a bad day or is overloaded.
The fungus guy for his part didn't do anything initially different to what many of do day to day, the whole "I've been flying etc etc" from him was pointless and unnecessary.
The wider point needs however to be reiterated, the Commander is ultimately responsible, so never allow yourself to be be bullied, cajoled or even unduly influenced into a decision that you fell isn't safe.
I've read all sorts online about this potentially causing capacity problems in NY airspace due to a variety of complex issues, from the perspective of the commander Id say so what? that is a problem for someone else to resolve, a damaged or mayday aircraft will also cause significant disruption most likely far worse than a few delays.

Jwscud
27th Jul 2018, 10:23
N90, really appreciate putting your side of the incident. I can understand what being overworked, undemanned and pretty stressed feels like, as that is the state of many of us in the flight deck too. However, there is too often a hectoring and aggressive approach over the radio in New York, be that on the ground in JFK or when speaking to approach.

NY approach are pretty good, and have some serious airspace issues to contend with, but they would be a whole lot better if they spoke more slowly, used standard RT, and remembered that not everyone comes to JFK every day.

This is is also another example of the lack of understanding on both sides of the microphone - fam flights are few and far between these days, and it would be v unlikely that a controller has had the experience of sitting on a jump seat watching the crew try to pick their way through the weather or understanding some of the issues with “too clever by half” modern weather radars.

Timpsi
27th Jul 2018, 10:39
As a NY Tracon controller, reading some of the misinformation in some of the replies in this thread has been very entertaining, but it also reminds me that very few people actually know just how complex our airspace is. There is a lot of background context that's always missed on situations like this one. I will agree that he could had phrased it differently, but having been myself in similar situations before, I can understand why he reacted that way.

We are in emergency crisis with the staffing situation here. We are working 10 hour shifts, mandatory 6 day workweeks with longer times on combined radar positions, and shorter breaks. Add that to the frustration of watching 1 aircraft deviate way differently than all the previous aircraft just before it, understand that there is a human being behind the screen, not a machine. Sometimes emotions can get even the best of us. He has over 3 decades of experience and is retiring at the end of this year. very cool guy, he's not a douche. Though he didn't do anything wrong from the operational point of view, I'm sure he would probably word it differently if he had a chance to go back in time.

I'm sure that there are other busy places by volume, but I doubt that there is another place in the world with this many high volume airports so close to each other. We many not be the busiest (though we're up there) but we are definitely the most complex. A deviation in other busy places may be not be such a big deal other than extra frequency workload, but here it's very likely to put you in direct conflict with other traffic.

That particular shift we were in swap and GREKI was one of the few fixes that were open to ALL N90 airports, so departures out of EWR, LGA, JFK, HPN, TEB, MMU (those last two go over Brezy first then Greki), plus all other satellites were being launched with timed intervals. When the Air Lingus got up, and turned the wrong way, they missed their gap reference the other departures from the other airports, and he couldn't just drive through LGA airspace with all the traffic that was there already confined tighter because of the weather. We do NOT penalize the aircraft flying their routes for the one that didn't comply. The best option is to do exactly what he did, hold him until another gap that the aircraft can meet becomes available. Our airspace is so tight that we do not have holding patterns within N90 airspace. If we need to hold, we have to issue box pattern vectors like he did. All our holding patterns are on the outter fixes in center airspace.

I could go on a longer and more detailed explanation of why he did what he did move by move, but it would require more time than I'm willing to commit to this.
That input is much appreciated! As an ATC trainee this sort of info helps to understand the challenges in such busy airspaces as the one in NY. Thank you much!:ok:

ManaAdaSystem
27th Jul 2018, 11:14
Always be wary of the guy who can't just go to the next sector, but instead has to say his piece about his 'experience'.
It's a disagreement between two people doing a job. The option of not following the pack was two orbits and the usual New Yohhk controller treatment.
Par for the course.
They were given the hand off to the next sector, so just shut up and go. If your boss is going to talk to his boss that's fine - switch over and write the ASR.
The only reason to tell the controller you're reporting the incident is to posture and big yourself up.
Playground stuff.

The usual New Yohhk controller treatment?
How many times have you been flying in and out of the New York area?

Emma Royds
27th Jul 2018, 12:40
If I am going to go into writing about a controller then as a courtesy more than anything, I will let him or her know before I leave the frequency. Nothing to do with willy waving but purely as a 'heads-up' for the controller, so that they can collate their thoughts when they unplug and if allowed, then it gives them the chance to listen to the tapes whilst everything is still fresh in their mind. When the subsequent email or phone call comes asking for more information, they will at least be prepared for it.

I would have perhaps have worded it differently to how my fellow Irishman did but that is easy for me to say in hindsight. I did think he showed more restraint than many others would though.

There is no place for emotion on the R/T, regardless of where you are are in the world. Keep it concise and operationally relevant or otherwise keep quiet and don't say it.

Stan Woolley
27th Jul 2018, 13:17
There is no place for emotion on the R/T, regardless of where you are are in the world. Keep it concise and operationally relevant or otherwise keep quiet and don't say it.

In an ideal world yes, but weíre hardly dealing with monks in the aviation world. I would guess that pilots and controllers are among the people with the biggest egos around. Not judging just observing. Itís very difficult if not impossible to remain calm when something like this is happening. I got slightly riled watching the video from my chair, having had a similar situation.

Maybe we should learn more about how we can improve in this regard?

Craggenmore
27th Jul 2018, 13:33
Old adage -" one peep is worth a thousand sweeps "

not heard that one before. Thanks PD

Smokey Lomcevak
27th Jul 2018, 14:37
Fascinating reading everyone's take on this, particularly N90-EWR's.

There's a lot of talk about Captain's authority etc, and in the clip I see no evidence of this being undermined. I agree that there were comments from both parties that were clumsy and unnecessary.

The point I would make, however, is that a lot of the conversation above revolves around what happened in the air; To use common TEM parlance - how the threat of weather (and mid-air cillision) were mitigated against. But this authority of the commander does not magically appear on rotation - it exists on the ground. So I wonder if maybe the whole thing could have been avoided. NY TRACON can't make the aircraft turn left, just as JFK TWR can't make the captain depart.

Was the left turn after departure what the crew were expecting? If not - was their mental model deficient?

I don't have the pleasure of visiting the NYC area, but my home base is also in a busy, although probably simpler TMA. As far as I have been told, if we feel we can't comply with our departure instructions due weather, the tower would rather know in advance and would be happy to coordinate a safe route with the departure controller. What they really seem to like is if you tell them what you want/need clearly, and concisely.

Just my two penneth.

Tommy Gavin
27th Jul 2018, 14:56
Off all the major airports in the developed world JFK has most probably the worst ATC followed closely by Chicago.
rude, non standard and chaotic. Other major airports like Atlanta, Houston and LAX are all very professional.

wiedehopf
27th Jul 2018, 15:45
Was the left turn after departure what the crew were expecting? If not - was their mental model deficient?

The departure issued is: Kennedy Five fly runway heading radar vectors to GREKI climb 5000 initially.

One problem with the 100 heading is Shamrock is probably expecting to stay on that heading for 5 miles while ATC would have soon after given another turn to 050 or something more towards the north.

Pilots plan a heading 10 or 15 miles ahead regarding weather. So ATC can say keep the turn tight i'll soon give you a further turn. Or how far out is the cell you are talking about would make sense. Or just give the turn around in one go, which is problematic as the preceding plane may have had insufficient separation to do that.

emma1
27th Jul 2018, 15:59
The controller was wrong END OF.

Ian W
27th Jul 2018, 16:05
The Captain has the ultimate responsibility for the aircraft and passengers, he or she has total authority for its operation
Some posters seem to have forgotten that

A controller, no matter how busy he is doesnít have the option to overide that
Perhaps this flight didnít fit in with his plan, well, make a new one, the dynamics of convective activity demand flexibility
Ideally this should be a cooperative effort between Pilots and Controllers but if ATC wonít help but worse points you towards weather youíre not comfortable with you have to speak up and take action
Stilton, you are completely correct in everything you say - but you do not have the full picture. N90 gave you some of it.
The captain accepted his departure clearance which included the turn - a standard procedure. The aircraft was one of a stream that fitted into many streams almost all departures from NY metroplex airports were flying out through the same gap in the weather. The airspace was busy - not shown in the "only-aircraft-in-the-sky" video from the OP the controller was busy. He has worked out sector transit plans for all the stream and no doubt agreed with other controllers about what they are doing. Then one aircraft (not others) refuses to follow the SID as cleared. Yes Stilton he has every right to do that - just as you have every right to stand on your brakes on the interstate if you see something - it's just that now you are affecting a lot of other people - that you probably gave no thought about.
In the same way that the video only showed one aircraft the sound track only showed what the controller was saying on the R/T, In the background the controller is almost certainly more busy, especially with an aircraft that has to be vectored around in a very small area of sky, explaining to controllers in adjacent sectors what is happening. So a workload for the controller that was already busy has just become very busy - while the pilot grudgingly accepts simple vectors and considers that is 'overloading' him? Obviously ignorant that he had to be vectored inside the restricted airspace as it is too small for holds.
Ideally, instead of claiming who has most authority, flight crew and controllers should work as a team. For example pilots, never just refuse a heading. You knew what you would be given as it was your departure clearance, so if you can see that will not be acceptable, when you are expected to turn offer an alternative, ideally with knowledge of the airspace that you are allowed to fly through. Negotiate and collaborate to get the best you can.

Another thing that flight crew could do that would be instructive is actually visit New York TRACON (as I have) - or for that matter any TRACON or control room that manages the airspace they regularly use. You may discover how difficult some things can be for controllers and see how hard they are working when all you hear is the occasional R/T call. It also helps to put a face to the voice.

EIFlyer
27th Jul 2018, 17:00
Fascinating reading everyone's take on this, particularly N90-EWR's.

There's a lot of talk about Captain's authority etc, and in the clip I see no evidence of this being undermined. I agree that there were comments from both parties that were clumsy and unnecessary.

The point I would make, however, is that a lot of the conversation above revolves around what happened in the air; To use common TEM parlance - how the threat of weather (and mid-air cillision) were mitigated against. But this authority of the commander does not magically appear on rotation - it exists on the ground. So I wonder if maybe the whole thing could have been avoided. NY TRACON can't make the aircraft turn left, just as JFK TWR can't make the captain depart.

Was the left turn after departure what the crew were expecting? If not - was their mental model deficient?

I don't have the pleasure of visiting the NYC area, but my home base is also in a busy, although probably simpler TMA. As far as I have been told, if we feel we can't comply with our departure instructions due weather, the tower would rather know in advance and would be happy to coordinate a safe route with the departure controller. What they really seem to like is if you tell them what you want/need clearly, and concisely.

Just my two penneth.
Exactly my take on it. Seemed a bit amateur taking off without communicating his intentions.

N90-EWR
27th Jul 2018, 17:38
Stilton, you are completely correct in everything you say - but you do not have the full picture. N90 gave you some of it.
The captain accepted his departure clearance which included the turn - a standard procedure. The aircraft was one of a stream that fitted into many streams almost all departures from NY metroplex airports were flying out through the same gap in the weather. The airspace was busy - not shown in the "only-aircraft-in-the-sky" video from the OP the controller was busy. He has worked out sector transit plans for all the stream and no doubt agreed with other controllers about what they are doing. Then one aircraft (not others) refuses to follow the SID as cleared. Yes Stilton he has every right to do that - just as you have every right to stand on your brakes on the interstate if you see something - it's just that now you are affecting a lot of other people - that you probably gave no thought about.
In the same way that the video only showed one aircraft the sound track only showed what the controller was saying on the R/T, In the background the controller is almost certainly more busy, especially with an aircraft that has to be vectored around in a very small area of sky, explaining to controllers in adjacent sectors what is happening. So a workload for the controller that was already busy has just become very busy - while the pilot grudgingly accepts simple vectors and considers that is 'overloading' him? Obviously ignorant that he had to be vectored inside the restricted airspace as it is too small for holds.
Ideally, instead of claiming who has most authority, flight crew and controllers should work as a team. For example pilots, never just refuse a heading. You knew what you would be given as it was your departure clearance, so if you can see that will not be acceptable, when you are expected to turn offer an alternative, ideally with knowledge of the airspace that you are allowed to fly through. Negotiate and collaborate to get the best you can.

Another thing that flight crew could do that would be instructive is actually visit New York TRACON (as I have) - or for that matter any TRACON or control room that manages the airspace they regularly use. You may discover how difficult some things can be for controllers and see how hard they are working when all you hear is the occasional R/T call. It also helps to put a face to the voice.

This is pretty much spot on! Good post!

Flight crews are always welcome to come tour the NY Tracon. It's hard to describe with a few written words the level of complexity that we have to deal with. You have to see it in action to fully grasp how all the flows from in/out all our airports interact with each other.

His dudeness
27th Jul 2018, 21:34
How much time exactly can I take as an pilot when cleared to line up (or is it into position and hold) at JFK to adjust my radar, read it, understand it and make up my mind (and that of my F/O as in CRM) wether I can accept the clearance given (and probably anyhow NOT see the relevant bit of the SID when large turns are involved) or not...?

Donīt know the A330, im "my" airplane I do have a wx rdr, period. I do see 120į 60 left and 60 right of the aircrafts centreline. Probably the controller has a better picture of it, how can I get hold of that picture before I get airborne ? Can I use gnd or tower to get me the picture ? I doubt it....given how busy these guys are.

Farrell
28th Jul 2018, 17:12
The usual New Yohhk controller treatment?
How many times have you been flying in and out of the New York area?

The usual New Yohhk treatment for wanting something 'different'. (I should have been more precise and fair to US controllers who are very nice on a day to day basis.)

ManaAdaSystem
29th Jul 2018, 01:43
The usual New Yohhk treatment for wanting something 'different'. (I should have been more precise and fair to US controllers who are very nice on a day to day basis.)

Yes, and how many times have you operated a jet into the US?

Flexable
29th Jul 2018, 13:27
How much time exactly can I take as an pilot when cleared to line up (or is it into position and hold) at JFK to adjust my radar, read it, understand it and make up my mind (and that of my F/O as in CRM) wether I can accept the clearance given (and probably anyhow NOT see the relevant bit of the SID when large turns are involved) or not...?

Donīt know the A330, im "my" airplane I do have a wx rdr, period. I do see 120į 60 left and 60 right of the aircrafts centreline. Probably the controller has a better picture of it, how can I get hold of that picture before I get airborne ? Can I use gnd or tower to get me the picture ? I doubt it....given how busy these guys are.
Right on, they see 2 different pictures of the wx.
A route between cells might be good for a while but it is changing, if the gap is closing then somebody will be the first to say no i am not going the way the preceding 5 or 10 aircraft went...

Two's in
29th Jul 2018, 17:14
If you replay the tape, it's very clear the communication and cooperation broke down within the first few transmissions. Shamrock says he can't take 100 without offering an alternative, when ATC asks how long he needs runway heading, the apparently unreasonable "15 miles" is the response. Within 30 seconds flat Shamrock has decided the controller is questioning his authority over the weather decision; and in the same time, the controller has decided Shamrock is taking the pi$$ over the severity of the weather cell. After that initial contact, everything becomes a dick measuring contest. Everyone has a bad day, but these two decided to have theirs together. This should be a teaching aid to illustrate how unprofessional attitudes rapidly escalate into something far more serious. Being at a TRACON post or the controls of an airliner with a pi$$y attitude is an absolute flight safety risk. Both individuals should get some professional counseling in how to apply CRM across aviation boundaries.

73qanda
29th Jul 2018, 20:34
Both individuals should get some professional counseling in how to apply CRM across aviation boundaries.

Professional counseling? Shall we hold an inquiry as well?

N90-EWR
30th Jul 2018, 03:20
Iwhen ATC asks how long he needs runway heading, the apparently unreasonable "15 miles" is the response

What you don't seem to understand is that in those 15 miles he would go through LaGuardia departure airspace, and start heading into Newark's. We do NOT have 15 miles for you to deviate in that spot. Take a look at a map of where the 3 major international airports are, and then figure out the why its "apparently unreasonable".

misd-agin
30th Jul 2018, 03:30
There's already one, or perhaps two, aircraft launching when Shamrock requests a 15 mile departure leg. The controller has to immediately figure out where to place Shamrock while the other departures, including behind Shamrock, keep turning left. Shamrock has to go somewhere and it's probably much easier to keep Shamrock circling overhead JFK while the controller sorts out the puzzle he's been given. Behind the scenes were JFK east departures shut down as the controller needed to create another gap to fit Shamrock into as Shamrock's gap went unused? So stop departures until the aircraft that launched behind Shamrock, and then Shamrock, are straightened out?

Had a similar event years ago. After departure requested a slight right turn. Parallel departures off our right. Needed slightly more to the right. Knew that the controller hated it but we needed it. TCAS and radar and the guy ahead of us is heading into the garbage. Controller (stressed) - "everyone's taken the turn. The guy ahead of you is in the turn." We're surprised that the preceding aircraft took the turn. It's VMC and the weather is visible to the naked eye.....and then the radio springs to life as the preceding aircraft calls (strained voice) "we need an immediate right turn!!" The controller wasn't irritated at us anymore.

Juan Tugoh
30th Jul 2018, 08:17
What you don't seem to understand is that in those 15 miles he would go through LaGuardia departure airspace, and start heading into Newark's. We do NOT have 15 miles for you to deviate in that spot. Take a look at a map of where the 3 major international airports are, and then figure out the why its "apparently unreasonable".

Unreasonable, reasonable - is completely missing the point; sure ATC have structural problems in NYC but any action in the Commander’s opinion that is for the safety of the aircraft overrrides your concerns about pushing tin. We all know the airspace restrictions in NYC so for the Shamrock to determine they could not take the avoidance is the overriding factor, any inconvenience of the controller and their requirements become entirely subordinate to the requirements of the aircraft needing deviation. If that means departures are slowed down, delayed or halted, then so be it. NYC airports are not unique, LHR in bad weather is a nightmare of delays due to weather avoidance but it’s always safety before “throughput”.

ACMS
30th Jul 2018, 08:52
Aren’t they supposed to be providing a SERVICE.

End of story.

Magplug
30th Jul 2018, 10:49
I am a regular 'heavy' visitor to JFK from Europe and nothing about that R/T clip surprises me. JFK controllers are aggressive on the radio, both on the ground and in the air. Whether it is a cultural thing or just plain macho BS they are amongst the worst controllers I have come across worldwide.

Having said that.... when I line up and see weather impinging on the departure track.... you stay put until you negotiate a better clearance.... no matter how much pressure JFK tower is putting on you to get airborne. Aer Lingus is not entirely blame free in this episode.

Sailvi767
30th Jul 2018, 12:23
Off all the major airports in the developed world JFK has most probably the worst ATC followed closely by Chicago.
rude, non standard and chaotic. Other major airports like Atlanta, Houston and LAX are all very professional.


Let me fix this for you. Out of all the major airports in the world JFK/LGA/EWR/TER/HPN/SWF has the most traffic in a very confined airspace of any airports in the world. Itís good they also have the best ATC. Most European controllers heads would explode if they had to work in NYC.

Martin_123
30th Jul 2018, 12:27
What you don't seem to understand is that in those 15 miles he would go through LaGuardia departure airspace, and start heading into Newark's. We do NOT have 15 miles for you to deviate in that spot. Take a look at a map of where the 3 major international airports are, and then figure out the why its "apparently unreasonable".

sorry I'm not familiar with NY airspace, but having a quick look at the charts of all mentioned airports I just can't seem to figure how exactly maintaining a runway heading of 220 deg for 15 miles would possibly get the shamrock anywhere near the EWR or LGA?

Magplug
30th Jul 2018, 14:21
Let me fix this for you. Out of all the major airports in the world JFK/LGA/EWR/TER/HPN/SWF has the most traffic in a very confined airspace of any airports in the world. Itís good they also have the best ATC. Most European controllers heads would explode if they had to work in NYC.

Go and check out the stats.... London remains the busiest airspace in the world - ahead of New York by a significant margin. In fact the LHR, LGW, LTN, STN, CDG, ORY, RTM, AMS triangle is controlled by 3 different countries depite being a similar area size to New York ARTCC. Nobody gets shouted at, nobody gets angry and no controllers speak patronisingly to foreign aircraft as if they are idiots. Most importantly they remain professional with no macho BS.

I hope you get to read this before another of my posts gets taken down. I appear to have a knack of hitting the nail on the head.

Ian W
30th Jul 2018, 14:24
Arenít they supposed to be providing a SERVICE.

End of story.
Indeed - providing a service to all the aircraft in the airspace.
The number of aircraft a controller can handle is based on the expected workload/taskload for each aircraft. If an aircraft unexpectedly imposes more workload, then one or more other aircraft will be held until the controller has safe capacity to accept them. Entirely up to you if you want to cause that delay. But you are making the "story" a little longer for everyone else.

Tommy Gavin
30th Jul 2018, 14:25
Let me fix this for you. Out of all the major airports in the world JFK/LGA/EWR/TER/HPN/SWF has the most traffic in a very confined airspace of any airports in the world. It’s good they also have the best ATC. Most European controllers heads would explode if they had to work in NYC.


All the more reason for using standard phraseology and applying clear and concise clearances. Especially to NON native English speakers. Just take a look at LHR and see what is also possible!

London Area is even busier then NYC and adjacent to busy airspaces in France and the Netherlands.

Ian W
30th Jul 2018, 14:59
Go and check out the stats.... London remains the busiest airspace in the world - ahead of New York by a significant margin. In fact the LHR, LGW, LTN, STN, CDG, ORY, RTM, AMS triangle is controlled by 3 different countries depite being a similar area size to New York ARTCC. Nobody gets shouted at, nobody gets angry and no controllers speak patronisingly to foreign aircraft as if they are idiots. Most importantly they remain professional with no macho BS.

I hope you get to read this before another of my posts gets taken down. I appear to have a knack of hitting the nail on the head.

You are correct that London Area airspace is busiest, However, Heathrow and Gatwick are a fair distance apart and both East / West, London City is a reasonable distance away to the East of Heathrow. and the other airports are too far away to be an issue, Now compare that to the runways and instrument procedures for JFK, LGA, EWR, TEB, These are complex interfering procedures. Numbers are important but so is complexity. [ BTW I worked at London Centre for several years and a few years later helped with a procedure design exercise for NY TRACON so I have some experience of both airspaces]

fatbus
30th Jul 2018, 15:14
The comment "Aviate Navigate Communicate " speaks volumes!

misd-agin
30th Jul 2018, 17:57
Arenít they supposed to be providing a SERVICE.

End of story.



That's exactly what ATC provided - they continued to provide separation for Shamrock, and the other flights, while trying to fit Shamrock into a gap to continue their departure.

misd-agin
30th Jul 2018, 18:44
Go and check out the stats.... London remains the busiest airspace in the world - ahead of New York by a significant margin. In fact the LHR, LGW, LTN, STN, CDG, ORY, RTM, AMS triangle is controlled by 3 different countries depite being a similar area size to New York ARTCC. Nobody gets shouted at, nobody gets angry and no controllers speak patronisingly to foreign aircraft as if they are idiots. Most importantly they remain professional with no macho BS.

I hope you get to read this before another of my posts gets taken down. I appear to have a knack of hitting the nail on the head.

It's the low altitude arena where separations are reduced. LHR (LHR, GTW, LTN, STN) has approx. 1,070,000 aircraft movements. PANYNJ lists the last 12 months for their region as 1,300,000 flights, of which 1,230,000 were airline movements.

LHR is approx. 475,000 flights. JFK is 447,000, EWR is 450,000 and LGA is 368,000. Imagine putting EWR at Windsor Castle, JFK at the final approach fix for LHR 27L/R, and LGA at Big Ben. That would give you an idea of the density and NYC has. Or putting an airport with 550,000 flights between LHR and GTW(550,000 to bring the combined total to the NYC total)?

Adding in CDG and AMS? Adding them brings the total to 2.05 million flights in a triangle. NYC-DC is 2.3 million flights over the same distance. It's called 'the northeast corridor' for a region. That's not counting the greater number of GA movements the U.S. has.

Martin_123
30th Jul 2018, 20:01
can someone please enlighten me how is this discussion even relevant? Shamrock asked for a 220 heading for 15 miles, it brings them South from JFK and away from all the mentioned airports and their SIDs/STARs as far as my eye can see. Give these guys what they ask for, turn them over the sea with wide easterly vector after 15 miles, job done. Looking back at the FR24 playbacks I just don't see the issue? Am I missing something?

heading050
30th Jul 2018, 20:49
ATC, despite the "C" standing for control, is, ultimately an advisory service. It is the responsibility of the PIC to get the aircraft safely between A & B, and to take whatever measures he or she sees fit in order to do that. Of course non standard actions need to be justified but it is important to remember that the air traffic service is there to assist the pilot, not the other way around. If controllers are unhappy with the restrictions in airspace then they need to address their superiors and not get short with the flightcrew.

yeah cause that all controllers do is an ADVISORY service.!!!

Sailvi767
31st Jul 2018, 02:04
Go and check out the stats.... London remains the busiest airspace in the world - ahead of New York by a significant margin. In fact the LHR, LGW, LTN, STN, CDG, ORY, RTM, AMS triangle is controlled by 3 different countries depite being a similar area size to New York ARTCC. Nobody gets shouted at, nobody gets angry and no controllers speak patronisingly to foreign aircraft as if they are idiots. Most importantly they remain professional with no macho BS.

I hope you get to read this before another of my posts gets taken down. I appear to have a knack of hitting the nail on the head.

i am not even sure what your talking about. AMS and CDG are over 150 miles away. I am talking 4 major airports all in a 20 mile box. We are talking about approach and departure control not enroute. Using your standard of distance we would need to add BOS, PHL, BDL, IAD, DCA, BWI ect.. to the mix. To do so however has zero validity as they have nothing to do with approach and departure operations.
The 4 main NYC airports are controlled by one ATC entity as they effectively operate as one large airport. Not the case at all in what you are describing. Draw a 20 mile circle around those airports and there is no busier airspace anywhere. NYC approach control currently handles over 4000 flights a day not counting low altitude transient aircraft. In the 4pm to 8pm peak they are dealing with 350 to 500 flights an hour with convective weather activity a order of magnitude larger then LHR, CDG or AMS deal with.

N90-EWR
31st Jul 2018, 05:10
Go and check out the stats.... London remains the busiest airspace in the world - ahead of New York by a significant margin. In fact the LHR, LGW, LTN, STN, CDG, ORY, RTM, AMS triangle is controlled by 3 different countries depite being a similar area size to New York ARTCC. Nobody gets shouted at, nobody gets angry and no controllers speak patronisingly to foreign aircraft as if they are idiots. Most importantly they remain professional with no macho BS.

I hope you get to read this before another of my posts gets taken down. I appear to have a knack of hitting the nail on the head.

Are they all sandwiched in a 20 mile circle? We don't claim to be the busiest, but nobody beats this place in complexity. Apples and oranges my friend!

Also, don't compare NY ARTCC to us. We are the New York Tracon or N90. Our airspace is a tiny fraction of ZNY's (NY ARTCC).

N90-EWR
31st Jul 2018, 05:15
can someone please enlighten me how is this discussion even relevant? Shamrock asked for a 220 heading for 15 miles, it brings them South from JFK and away from all the mentioned airports and their SIDs/STARs as far as my eye can see. Give these guys what they ask for, turn them over the sea with wide easterly vector after 15 miles, job done. Looking back at the FR24 playbacks I just don't see the issue? Am I missing something?

You're missing the part where they have to go intrail with all the other GREKI departures that are coming out of all the airports. There are other tracks to the southwest with other traffic (a lot of the arrival tracks are in that direction). We don't have a spot in the sky anywhere that's not being used for something.

N90-EWR
31st Jul 2018, 05:25
Unreasonable, reasonable - is completely missing the point; sure ATC have structural problems in NYC but any action in the Commanderís opinion that is for the safety of the aircraft overrrides your concerns about pushing tin. We all know the airspace restrictions in NYC so for the Shamrock to determine they could not take the avoidance is the overriding factor, any inconvenience of the controller and their requirements become entirely subordinate to the requirements of the aircraft needing deviation. If that means departures are slowed down, delayed or halted, then so be it. NYC airports are not unique, LHR in bad weather is a nightmare of delays due to weather avoidance but itís always safety before ďthroughputĒ.

I like the "overrides your concerns about pushing tin" comment. More like my concerns about tin not hitting more tin. Things to keep in mind reference this case. The controller in this instance is ONLY working JFK departures and he has ZERO control over the other traffic in the adjacent airspace. He has to contain aircraft under his control inside his allocated airspace. The other controllers are busy, and on nights like this very likely to be dealing with their own issues with weather deviations. Controllers workloads skyrocket every time there's deviations like this.

73qanda
31st Jul 2018, 09:38
All of that is true I’m sure N90 but at the end of the day we (the industry) don’t want to go too far down the road of pilots thinking that declining a heading is going to cause a gigantic headache for them ( this pilot probably has a headache by now). If the pilot had felt it was better to fly through the cell than increase the controllers workload, and as such accepted the clearance, and picked up hail damage and injured pax, we would all be wondering why he accepted the heading. We’d be saying things like “ who cares if they have to halt departures, just keep the aircraft safe, the controllers there are the best in the world they’ll conjure up a plan “.
This is really a storm in a tea cup in that nobody was hurt, two blokes got a fraction shirty with each other, job done.

N90-EWR
31st Jul 2018, 10:14
All of that is true I’m sure N90 but at the end of the day we (the industry) don’t want to go too far down the road of pilots thinking that declining a heading is going to cause a gigantic headache for them ( this pilot probably has a headache by now). If the pilot had felt it was better to fly through the cell than increase the controllers workload, and as such accepted the clearance, and picked up hail damage and injured pax, we would all be wondering why he accepted the heading. We’d be saying things like “ who cares if they have to halt departures, just keep the aircraft safe, the controllers there are the best in the world they’ll conjure up a plan “.
This is really a storm in a tea cup in that nobody was hurt, two blokes got a fraction shirty with each other, job done.




This was a no event as far as we are concerned. The ones that have made this a storm were the pilot, and the media (social media-forums, etc). The controller has had a great career that spans well over 3 decades working traffic here at the New York Tracon, and he is retiring at the end of the year with a max retirement. All that talk about "My boss will call your boss" means nothing. Bottom line he did nothing wrong from an operational point of view, it was reviewed, and declared a non event.

As for declining a heading, yes that is your decision as PIC. We are not debating that. We are in agreement that you must follow whatever course of action you deem is the safest for your aircraft. What followed the declining of the heading was a consequence of the airspace limitations, weather, and traffic situation he had at the moment. We don't do "penalty vectors". We don't want you on our radar scopes one second longer than needed, but we have set rules and procedures to follow, and safety is also our number 1 priority.

Sailvi767
31st Jul 2018, 12:28
can someone please enlighten me how is this discussion even relevant? Shamrock asked for a 220 heading for 15 miles, it brings them South from JFK and away from all the mentioned airports and their SIDs/STARs as far as my eye can see. Give these guys what they ask for, turn them over the sea with wide easterly vector after 15 miles, job done. Looking back at the FR24 playbacks I just don't see the issue? Am I missing something?

Yes, you are missing the fact that runs them through the arrival traffic. Airports have both arrivals and departures. You would however need to know the precise runway configurations in use at LGA and JFK to see the true impact.

Flying Bagel
1st Aug 2018, 11:53
This was a no event as far as we are concerned. The ones that have made this a storm were the pilot, and the media (social media-forums, etc). The controller has had a great career that spans well over 3 decades working traffic here at the New York Tracon, and he is retiring at the end of the year with a max retirement. All that talk about "My boss will call your boss" means nothing. Bottom line he did nothing wrong from an operational point of view, it was reviewed, and declared a non event.

As for declining a heading, yes that is your decision as PIC. We are not debating that. We are in agreement that you must follow whatever course of action you deem is the safest for your aircraft. What followed the declining of the heading was a consequence of the airspace limitations, weather, and traffic situation he had at the moment. We don't do "penalty vectors". We don't want you on our radar scopes one second longer than needed, but we have set rules and procedures to follow, and safety is also our number 1 priority.

I think some of you should spend some time in other busy control centres to see how they handle high traffic volumes without being petulant and condescending, nevermind the fact you guys and girls pretty much use the most non-standard comms out there.

We're all stressful in times of bad weather and high traffic volumes. I think it helps if people can be nice to one another instead of being jerks.

misd-agin
1st Aug 2018, 16:33
can someone please enlighten me how is this discussion even relevant? Shamrock asked for a 220 heading for 15 miles, it brings them South from JFK and away from all the mentioned airports and their SIDs/STARs as far as my eye can see. Give these guys what they ask for, turn them over the sea with wide easterly vector after 15 miles, job done. Looking back at the FR24 playbacks I just don't see the issue? Am I missing something?

Where did you think JFK and LGA arrivals from the south and south-west arrive from? And the JFK arrivals from the NW also get routed south over Staten Island and make a left turn to descend on an easterly heading to enter a left downwind for the 22's @ JFK. To give you an idea of the airspace problems. the flights inbound to JFK from the west cross LENDY at FL190 which approx. 20 nm NW of JFK. They can't come from the west (EWR) or north/north-east(LGA) because other airports control that airspace.
Which LHR arrivals put you 14,000' high 20 nm from the airport?

Juan Tugoh
1st Aug 2018, 16:56
I like the "overrides your concerns about pushing tin" comment. More like my concerns about tin not hitting more tin. Things to keep in mind reference this case. The controller in this instance is ONLY working JFK departures and he has ZERO control over the other traffic in the adjacent airspace. He has to contain aircraft under his control inside his allocated airspace. The other controllers are busy, and on nights like this very likely to be dealing with their own issues with weather deviations. Controllers workloads skyrocket every time there's deviations like this.

Maybe try listening to LHR controllers when it gets busy with Thunderstorms and deviation required. The guy maybe experienced with a great career but he lost his cool, he screwed up, which is why it got highlighted here and other places. Your loyalty does you credit, but there comes a time when itís the right thing to do to admit that, on this occasion, he could have done better. Failure to do so is the biggest error as it suggests that we can expect to see a repeat of the poor event. No-one in aviation is perfect - we all have days where we act in a way that we would like to improve on should the situation arise. For this controller, this is one of those moments - he should learn from it and move on. No-one died and that is the big deal, but the attitude could easily have been a contributing factor is a nasty event, a hole in the Swiss cheese. It wasnít so it becomes a learning point, and if we learn by our mistakes most of us are getting a great education.

RufusXS
1st Aug 2018, 17:21
He did make a new plan, which is the same plan any of us would had done: Hold him until a gap to go back over GREKI became available. The only thing he did wrong was getting into a verbal contest with the pilot, which I agree was unnecessary. I'd argue that the "my boss will call your boss" parting shot from the pilot was also uncalled for as well.
Does anyone know if the bosses wound up actually discussing this?

SeenItAll
1st Aug 2018, 19:13
Other than perhaps being verbally impolite, can someone tell me what the ATC did wrong? Shamrock said he couldn't turn left, ATC airspace restrictions say he can't continue on runway heading, so ATC turned him right. After an orbit or two, Shamrock asked for a direct route to GREKI, but such a route was impossible from his current orbiting location without intruding on LGA airspace. Further, the ATC had other planes (who presumably did turn left) in a line traveling to GREKI. When a break in this line was feasible, Shamrock was inserted into the mix. End of story other than for the willy-waving by Shamrock and ATC's retort that it was Shamrock's refusal to turn left that is what caused the orbits. So tell me, what is incorrect about this narrative? Other than being more polite, what should ATC have done differently?

neilki
1st Aug 2018, 19:43
This is New York. He was polite. These guys handle GA traffic popping up out of nowhere and Heavies not taking to anyone with style. The vast majority of the time you can hear the humor in Approach & Finals instructions. Flying in this airspace almost every day there's nowhere I'd rather be..

His dudeness
1st Aug 2018, 20:13
Other than perhaps being verbally impolite, can someone tell me what the ATC did wrong? Shamrock said he couldn't turn left, ATC airspace restrictions say he can't continue on runway heading, so ATC turned him right. After an orbit or two, Shamrock asked for a direct route to GREKI, but such a route was impossible from his current orbiting location without intruding on LGA airspace. Further, the ATC had other planes (who presumably did turn left) in a line traveling to GREKI. When a break in this line was feasible, Shamrock was inserted into the mix. End of story other than for the willy-waving by Shamrock and ATC's retort that it was Shamrock's refusal to turn left that is what caused the orbits. So tell me, what is incorrect about this narrative? Other than being more polite, what should ATC have done differently?

I agree completely

Bearcat
1st Aug 2018, 23:06
this thread is now going around in circles - pardon the pun. wrap it up.

73qanda
2nd Aug 2018, 03:16
Ok.
The wrap;
Two professionals were working with the best of intentions under challenging and dynamic circumstances.
One professional, in his frustration, deviated from managing the situation to highlight how the situation had come about( “you got yourself into this” ). This foray increased the tension and stress of both parties without operational benefit.
Both parties continued to actively manage the situation to a successful conclusion, at that point the other party deviated from strictly operational transmissions to voice his frustration/ displeasure, also to no operational benefit.
Nobody was hurt.
The end.

wetbehindear
2nd Aug 2018, 04:09
If we all agree that an error happened in managing traffic and providing service to a customer ( aircraft ) is it possible we might want to delve into nature of this error?

Is it possible to suggest that nature of this error is a planning error rather than an error made by frontline soldiers?

West Coast
2nd Aug 2018, 06:16
If we all agree that an error happened in managing traffic and providing service to a customer ( aircraft ) is it possible we might want to delve into nature of this error?

Is it possible to suggest that nature of this error is a planning error rather than an error made by frontline soldiers?

What was was the error in managing traffic?

Sailvi767
2nd Aug 2018, 06:58
If we all agree that an error happened in managing traffic and providing service to a customer ( aircraft ) is it possible we might want to delve into nature of this error?

Is it possible to suggest that nature of this error is a planning error rather than an error made by frontline soldiers?

i did not see any error. Dense hi traffic area with convective activity. Handle well by the controller in a no time situation.

Sid Starz
6th Aug 2018, 15:15
I wonder how much fuel that used?

i guess it's down to the different ATC systems in the US and Europe. In Europe the traffic heading up to MERIT or wherever would just be put under vectors 5nm left/right of the other departing traffic, without the need the need for the "in trail" spacing they use in the US through the entry/exit points. It does seem much more "procedural" in the US.

core_dump
6th Aug 2018, 17:24
without the need the need for the "in trail" spacing they use in the US through the entry/exit points. It does seem much more "procedural" in the US.

I always thought the whole point of our miles in trail spacing was because the next sector has to merge several flows. How is he going to do that if there's a constant stream of 5NM spacing?

ATC Watcher
6th Aug 2018, 20:48
:Wrap up ?yes time to do so. everything has been said already. we are now debating if mine is bigger than yours, and whether ATC is an advisory service :hmm:. Not really worthwhile anymore while there were were great opportunity to learn from each other frustrations and stress in this discussion.. Traffic is raising fast every year while infrastructure is the same and available airspace is sometimes even shrinking. People are working to the limits and stress and fatigue are both becoming an issue. Both in cockpits and in the OPS rooms on the ground.
Remember the main aim of ATC is to keep you 5 NM and 1000 feet to other aircraft and keep you clear of other people airspace. The rest is extra . In time of stress the extras might not always be there .You'll get more of those in the future .

fdr
7th Aug 2018, 11:41
Prior success is not a perfect predictor of future success; we end up with a positive bias that things are not that bad given the previous outcomes, and so risk rises over time. Overall, I cannot fault a Captain for rejecting a clearance where his judgement on the spot is the final legal authority. The controller, dealing with the issue also seemed to manage the disruption in a reasonable way from his perspective, however the questioning of the Captains judgement tends to look bad in the subsequent enquiry when the wheels thereafter happen to come off the wagon. NY particularly JFK's airspace is a mess, and the controllers are dealing with lousy layouts and options, which the radar guided holds suggest was constrained by the available controller options.

Overall, the guys seemed to keep their cool and the end comments were professional, it was appropriate for the captain to make comment, and it is also appropriate for the controller to explain the issues related to the airspace that he has to work within.

Years ago, a foreign wide body going into a notoriously irritating airport was given the weather which was favoring the long runway, and asked for the long runway, even though flow control was using a shorter runway with gusty xwinds, and being wet. The controller went to great pains to talk the visiting widebody to accept an at best marginal runway, when a very good option was obvious. After 5 minutes of haggling, the controller got his wish, and the visiting aircraft relented and accepted the lousy option. I piped up and commented that it would look pretty stupid in an enquiry if that plane ended up with dirt onits treads from some event on that runway, having been hounded to making a decision that the captain and crew were obviously not happy with. About 5 seconds later, the controller changed the runway for the arriving aircraft and they landed on the best choice runway.

We are a system; the controllers and the flight crew are in the majority professional at their duties and will bend over backwards to do things efficiently and safely, not in that order. Sometimes, the wood gets lost in the trees, and it is worthwhile appreciating the other components that are needed to make the system work.

In the end, the PIC has the legal final responsibility in respect to the disposition of his/her aircraft, and thats unlikely to change anytime soon.

Given how bad the design of JFK is, and the amount of lousy weather, it is a wonder that so few issues arise to the point of commentary.