View Full Version : VB cutting corners on safety?

19th Jan 2003, 08:46
Have learnt that VirginBlue have put out an FCON to the crews stating that engineers will not be doing a preflight on the B737 NG's effective 20th Jan.
Is this going against the international standard that requires a licenced engineer to inspect an aircraft at each major port before the next flight? The pilots are not happy with losing the experience of an engineer checking their aircraft before flight and i am sure the passengers on board would like to know the aircraft was checked/cleared by an engineer before being released for flight.
Is this being done just to save money by reducing the number of engineers at the expense of safety?

Home Brew
19th Jan 2003, 10:50
Tiga, it is important to get the FULL story before making statements.

It is my understanding from an engineer, that Casa has given the same approval ALSO to the red Rat in the following cases. "Where transit time is less than 4 hours" an engineers signature for a preflight inspection is not required. I further understand that the engineers intend to continue signing the preflight to cover their own butt!!

Yes, I am concerned that the airlines are trying to reduce preflight inspections of aircraft, but it is even more concerning that CASA is approving these moves!!

19th Jan 2003, 19:59
Home Brew has a few good points but just remember that when airlines like QF go to ports in WA such as Broome,Kalgoorlie etc there are no ground engineers.

Im sure when they get to a port with an engineer that the aircraft would be seen to.
Even Virgin arent that cheap (yet,I hope!)

20th Jan 2003, 00:47
Virgin currently fly to many "regional" ports throughout Australia on short turnarounds, where there are no engineering facilities. In these cases, the tech crew do the pre-flight and any possible unserviceabilities found are reported to ops who then organise engineering to fly out to check it if it is a problem of a serious nature...

20th Jan 2003, 04:56
tiga...are you a professional fisherman?

Is this going against the international standard that requires a licenced engineer to inspect an aircraft at each major port before the next flight?

Perhaps you could quote this international standard?

and i am sure the passengers on board would like to know the aircraft was checked/cleared by an engineer before being released for flight.

What you mean like the Daily Inspection?

at each major port before the next flight?

Please define MAJOR port.

20th Jan 2003, 05:00
tiga you may not be aware that pilot certification of aircraft including jets on turnarounds and transits is now very common.

The alternative for some operators is to pay approx. US$350-600 at each stop.

20th Jan 2003, 05:07
This matter was raised on this forum some months ago and generated considerable debate.


Pilots cannot certify Return to Service. They may carry out a Flight Manual Inspection but there is no certification from a maintenance perspective

The safety issue of whether VB or the red rat will be able to remove engineers from the tarmac is still being vigorously debated as part of the Regulatory Reform Program. VB (and to a great extent QF) are simply trying to jump the gun to set precedent. And , as contrasted with what happens in Regional Centres, they are hell bent on removing the LAME from tarmac - everywhere! If you blokes, as pilots, aren't happy with this then make comment to CASA or your representative body.

The ONLY reason is as tiga first suggested - to save money

Oz Geek
20th Jan 2003, 22:36
AN LAME...Well done. Could not agree more.

This is a cost cutting exercise and a subtle way of transferring more responsibility onto the Flight crew (without the appropriate training or renummeration).

Minor ports were allowed to be without Engineering support using the logic that transit checks through major ports would be good enough. Now the object is to remove Engineering from major ports and expect the flight crew to operate the A/C in isolation.

I was brought up to believe that Pilots fly planes and Engineers maintain them. If your NOT happy about this situation have your say....before its too late.

Have a look at the following link as well:


21st Jan 2003, 19:34
To answer your question, YES of course this is being done purely to save money. :(

It is certainly NOT being done to IMPROVE safety. :mad:

21st Jan 2003, 21:22
Yawnnn.........Get with the times my dear people. Boeings are designed to be preflighted by pilots. Sure, you have a problem or see something you don't like, call an engineer. Smacks of the old days when people in this country thought you needed a flight engineer on a 767. :rolleyes:

Oz Geek
22nd Jan 2003, 00:39
Winstun....your apathy noted.

Boeings may be manufactured to be preflighted by pilots (an opinion, at best, that I'm not too sure will stand up in a court of law) but are pilots made to preflight Boeings??

And sure, call an Engineer when you have a problem...if they are still available on the line for you. This is the typical reactive response to maintenance operations as a whole....

What happens if the pilot on his pre flight (having done the Boeing Pilot Pre Flight course) notices a hydraulic leak that is within limits (because you have looked up the MM - which is of course available to you)???

Do you ignore it and wait until it fails providing someone else with the cost of the delay or do you write it in the A/C log so that the Tech specialists know there is a problem, can order parts, can organise tooling and down time at an appropriate port before it fails. Unfortunately once a pilot notes this in the log a LAME must certify the A/Cs release as it is a maintenance function under CARs. Remove the LAME from the system and this proactive response to airline operations is unavailable.

The type of operation without Engineering support can potentially lead to defects reported by word of mouth or on scrap bits of paper at the end of a shift. An efficient operation must have Air crew and Ground crew working together looking at the big picture...maybe an expansion of the Crew Resource Management logic should be looked at for airline operators.

As for the B767 quip....maybe we should have kept the Engineer and removed a pilot?? I wonder if your apathy would have been so apparent then.

22nd Jan 2003, 06:39
Here we go again. :rolleyes:

How on Earth can an Aircraft be designed to be preflighted by a Pilot, instead of an Engineer? :confused: PLEASE EXPLAIN.

You may as well say that these Aircraft are designed to be flown normally on autopilot, usually three of them, so why do we need two other Pilots as well. ;) :D

Don't tell me, I KNOW what you are going to say......... :rolleyes:

The two Pilots are there in case something goes wrong, and one or both of them might have to actually fly the Aircraft, right.

Oddly enough, I always thought that was ONE of the many reasons that the LAMEs were there, just in case. :eek:

22nd Jan 2003, 06:54
airsupport has the issue fair on the nose! Thank you!!

22nd Jan 2003, 09:26
As for the B767 quip....maybe we should have kept the Engineer and removed a pilot?? I wonder if your apathy would have been so apparent then.
Careful Oz... you may hit a nerve.
Smacks of the old days when people in this country thought you needed a flight engineer on a 767.
Should we tell him that Sir Peter and the F/E's were solely responsible for that one?

Apparently, if Boeing design an aircraft such that it soes not require a preflight, they also supply a bubble for the aircraft to fly and taxi around in so that nothing outside THEIR design standard can a) hit the aircraft; b) be hit by the aircraft; c) be ingested by the aircraft's engine(s).

Winstun, whilst your apathy has been noted, don't mistake that for excused. It's cowboys like yourself who lead to situations where scraps of paper ARE the Maintenance log because you accepted the responsibility of someone whom you had absolutely no competence to replace.You then wonder why there is no-one there when something does go wrong and you don't have the qualifications to assess the aircraft airworthiness nor rectify any discrepancies.

I am curious. How would you propose to carry out a maintenance preflight in the standard 35 minute turnaround on a B737, taking into account the current heavy workload of both Tech Crew?

Thankfully I believe you are in the minority. And as I said in an earlier post, if you're not happy about it, complain to CASA, your representative body and your employer.

No Further Requirements
22nd Jan 2003, 09:35
G'day. I do not wish to enter into the debate, but can someone enlighten me on a rumour I have heard:

Do VB carry an engineer with them from BNE-DWN flights as there isn't one based in Darwin?

No disrespect to VB intended, I just wanted to know. Cheers,


Edited for poor spelling!

23rd Jan 2003, 00:24
NFR, that is a negative on the engineer...

23rd Jan 2003, 13:41
Firstly, I'm not apathetic nor a cowboy. Pilots DO have the qualifications to assess aircraft airworthiness. Happens everyday in the US with several thousand airliners. Why do pilots do a walkaround, if not? To strech their legs? I'm not inplying you don't need LAMEs. Pilots DO NOT have the qualifications to rectify any discrepencies (unless MEL specified/allowed). Big difference. You notice a hydaulic leak, you call a LAME. One not available at port, you phone a LAME and get advice. Still concerned, you don't fly. Satisfied and within MEL limits, of course you write it up. Aircraft can be released without a LAME signature per MEL relief. I respect the technical/engineering knowledge/experience of LAMEs in relation to pilots. However their job is to maintain/repair aircraft, not to preflight. That can be done safely by the pilot. Sure you can say, it's safer with a LAME. You can say it's safer done by a LAME with 20 years experience more than another with only a few years experience, etc, etc. During pushback, you don't need to be a LAME to make sure aircraft does not hit / ingest anything, etc. It really ain't that hard. Re the 767 F/E, do you know something Boeing and every other 767 operator in the world don't? Please tell.

23rd Jan 2003, 18:07
With-out stirring up too big a debate,(I know a few will bite)If the engineer is removed from pre-flights (first flight of the day at least)How closely do you expect pilots to do preflights (most tend to look at the maintenance log carefully and glance momentarily at all other areas).I can't say that I've ever seen a pilot checking for life jackets being fitted(yes they do get removed,and not only for maintenance)nor climbing into wheel-wells checking off- wing slide bottle pressures (B767).The list goes on and on and wether it is relevant or not the words "Affordable safety"spring to mind.
If economics isn't the issue What is ??

23rd Jan 2003, 18:54

Still waiting on your explanation, how these Aircraft are specifically designed to be preflighted by Pilots, PLEASE PLEASE EXPLAIN. :confused:

Nobody here, certainly NOT me, said that Pilots would NOT be ABLE to do it? I could train one of my primary school age Grandsons to DO the preflight, IF he sees something he doesn't like just come and tell Grandad. :rolleyes:

This would, much like the Pilot doing it instead of an LAME, be much cheaper for the Airlines, however I for one would argue that it was definitely NOT as SAFE. :eek:

The vast majority of Captains that I have worked with over some 40 years in the Industry, do NOT want to do this. They prefer an LAME to do the preflight (as well as their own preflight). WHY??? Because it is SAFER. ;)

Best regards,


23rd Jan 2003, 20:17

You are a goose mate.

If you think that you can replace the years of training and experience that a Licensed engineer brings to work each day then you are in lala land.

I have operated the B767 all around the world for the last 15yrs. There have been many, many situations where the only reason we have been able to dispatch has been the presence of a licenced engineer - not an AME with dispatch quals.

Despite my length of service on type, I still come across technical situations which are beyond my knowledge. Modern jet transports are complicated beasts, and as pilots we effectively are only told what we 'need to know' to operate the aircraft in flight and when under our control on the ground.

I have commented on VB previously on this forum, but as ever, QF is not far behind in cost inititives that erode safety margins.

All professional pilots should offer their support to the ALAEA in their efforts to stop the airlines doing away with LAME's in areas where they presently exist.



Oz Geek
24th Jan 2003, 00:10

Nobody here has questioned why a pilot does a walk-around. They are questioning the removal of the legal requirement for the LAME to do one as well. If you are suggesting one pilot doing a walk-around is as safe as the current system of pilot and LAME then I'm afraid you just might well be a goose. I assumed it was just apathy...my mistake.

You also mentioned pushbacks...why?? Everyone else is talking about safety and preflights?

Are you a bean-counter wearing a pilot uniform??

I'm also waiting for your explaination of how Boeing has redesigned the -NG to do without a preflight from a LAME...last time I looked they still looked a lot like a Classic...If Boeing is so good, why don't they design a 737 that doesn't need any walk around at all - then pilots wouldn't have to do one either!!

Next you'll be telling us that Boeing can design a plane that can fly without pilots like some sort of 'auto-pilot'......oh, hang on....

If your so hell bent on saving money why don't we remove a cabin attendant and when your not in command of the A/c you can go down the blunt end and help out there. After all "it ain't that hard" and it would be "just as safe".

I'm glad your the minority winstun...:D

24th Jan 2003, 00:48
One of the previous writers suggested that the Captain/Crew can dispatch the aircraft in the absence of licenced engineers, even with a defect, under the MEL. I assume this involves writing-up the defect in the Maintenance Log as an acceptable deferred defect. My question then becomes - if the cockpit crew are unable to sign the certificate of release to service (or whatever it is called in your Company/Country) how can the aircraft proceed? My point is this: as the Captain, I decide whether the MEL permits me to use the aircraft in it's defective state. It does not permit me to overlook the required certificate of release to service which is a legally separate certification to that of the ADD. What rules have been invented at DJ and QF (courtesy of CASA) to enable this?

Also, from the point of view of a time and motion exercise, it is an inappropriate allocation of tasks. The pilots in modern aircraft are busy enough doing their own work (cockpit preparation) without being loaded up with other peoples work. An airline that wants fast turnarounds and tight schedules can't have two people doing unlimited work on the ground. Afterall, we could get the pilots to do the re-fuelling too. Including of course, the water contamination test. Oh! and the manual loadsheet - as we used to do. But that would be re-inventing the wheel. In the past it was discovered that it was ultimately more efficient to share the workload in the interests of efficiency.

From my position here - it looks like CASA, DJ & QF are getting so smart they are testing the threshold of stupidity.

Capn Laptop
24th Jan 2003, 01:06
A lot of the hysteria caused by the removal of engineers on TURNAROUNDS is based on a flawed understanding of what is actually needed.

There is a requirement that the aircraft have the following (amongst other things) - a valid maintenance release and a valid daily inspection.

These must be provided by an appropriately licenced engineer working under an approved system of maintenance.

Once the daily and maintenance release are signed (and are vaild) the aircraft can fly as many sectors as needed without being seen to by an engineer unless it is doing an etops flight (where the rules are different) or has a defect that invalidated the maintenance release.

In the case of Virgin the Captain can MEL an item - thus revalidating the maintenance release - ONLY if the MEL application/rectification action has NO maintenance task associated with it ie a M next to an item in the DDG.

As soon as a M appears it is all over red rover until an appropriately licenced engineer comes and makes an assessment and either rectifies the fault or applies the MEL.

The walkaround betwen sectors is to ensure that the aircraft remains airworthy - but fulfills no other function in a regulatory sense as far as I am aware.

As long as the maintenance release and daily are valid the aircraft is OK to fly from the regulatory perspective.

it amazes me that engineers are the loudest voices when these things come up - but are the first to MEL things - even when the parts are available - because they couldn't be bothered to do the job - they are also happy to BS a crew and tell them that the daily is valid as long as it s valid when they depart - all because they couldn't be bothered doing a daily. (A daily must be valid for the duration of a flight by the way - ie it must be valid until after you land - not until you take off.

flying without a valid daily is serious go to jail stuff.....

24th Jan 2003, 02:24
I think the biggest safety concern is not that a pilot does it but rather that there is a chance a Virgin FO with 750 hours total time could be the one doing it. Not trying to be too picky but with that little experience they may not be able to do it satisfactorily.

Oz Geek
24th Jan 2003, 02:30
Capn Laptop....are you related to Winstun??:rolleyes:

An MEL can be applied EVEN IF spares are available ONLY IF the Maintenance System approved by CASA allows it. Of course you are only responsible for one A/C at a time where the LAME might just have other defects on other A/C that are not able to be MEL'd that need to be fixed.

As for your "not being bothered" statements....I'll not bother addressing them.:mad: :mad:

As for B..S..'ing the crew. Its nice to know you'll not put up with shananigans like that. Makes me think that the operator your with should be investing more into what Engineering should be doing and excelling at it, not looking at removing duties they think they can do without.

Workplace culture starts at the top and can be a wonderful thing or a cancer....

24th Jan 2003, 03:09
Capn Laptop,

You are missing the point. :rolleyes:

The original question from "tiga" was:-

"Is this being done just to save money by reducing the number of engineers at the expense of safety?"

The answer is:- YES.......... :(

The ONLY reason it is being done is to save money.

Whether or not it is legally required, removing it WILL impact on safety. :(

Your negative comments about Engineers do you no credit, I could tell you a lot of stories the other way round, but I won't because unlike you LAMEs are professionals. ;)

24th Jan 2003, 06:53

24th Jan 2003, 06:56
I think you people are all missing the point.
Yes, it's all about MONEY.

4 engines instead of 2.
Only fly in VMC.
Only fly in daylight.
No non-precision approaches.
No circling approaches.
No Captains with less than 10000 hours experience.
LAMEs required to do each pre-flight.
2 LAMEs required to do each pre-flight (safer).
Hell, 3 LAMEs for each pre-flight (even safer, etc.)

Geek, I think you and your small band of friends here are in the minority. Paying public out there don't want to be forking out extra dollars so you few can cling on to inefficient past practices that will have NO SIGNIFICANT EFFECT ON SAFETY OF THE OPERATION.

Late reply to LAYME:
1. Never inplied pilot trained to fix aircraft.
2. LAME signs off aircraft from maintenance or any repair.
3. PILOT on each pre-flight assess' airworthiness of aircraft by
pre-flight checks and external inspection. And by reference to

Capn Laptop
24th Jan 2003, 09:29
Airsupport and OzGeek,

I have worked for a number of carriers - including one where the maintenance was done by a major australian international carrier, and I can tell you that there are engineers out there that are VERY quick to apply the pen rather than the spanner. we had one occasion where we had a wing body overheat - the airframe guy said it was a wiring problem and the electrical guy said it was an air leak. As it was intermittant they were both happy to dispatch the aircraft on a ETOPS flight to "see if it came on again" - no fault finding or investigation. these engineers were from the large australian international airline - the aircraft didn't go by the way - the crew left the engineers to sort the problem out and went to the pub, along with 120 passengers.

As for the point of the argument YES it is obviously a money saving exercise - I have not seen the FCON but assume what is said here is correct (a brave asumption I know!) HOWEVER as to whether or not it reduces safety I don't think we can make the nexus.

How many times on a turnaround does an engineer find something that wouldn't be obvious to a pilot? We look at the same things - on the aeroplanes that I have flown there aren't too many places where engineers would look and a pilot wouldn't - remember the discussion here is about 737's not 74's etc.

Now assuming that there was an obvious problem, the pilot is responsible for ensuring that the aircraft is servicable prior to departure. If that means that the aircraft sits on the ground until an engineer is found - then the aeroplane sits on the ground.

Oz Geek - you obviously do not understand the relationship the MEL/DDG has with the other documents. The MEL/DDG is approved by CASA - as is the system of maintenance - they go hand in hand. You don't just whip down to slick dicks mel store and buy a mel - if it doesn't specifically say that the fault must be rectified if parts are available the MEL will go on. As an example I don't know how many times i have flown with one landing light mel'd for days at a time - with a note on the defect log saying the parts are in stock.....

The point is that this has been the practice at outlying ports for many many years and as yet an aeroplane has not plunged into the ground because of something the pilot missed. there have been many aircraft grounded until an engineer is flown out to the aircraft, so it may be a false economy - but lets not make bold statements about safety that are unsupportable by the facts. As a matter of interest how many times are the books taken away by an engineer to have them signed by the appropriate category when the person signing the books hasn't laid an eye on the aeroplane - and how many times has the preflight been signed by an engineer before refuelling has commenced let alone finished - and part of what they are signing for with the preflight is that the fueling has been completed in accordance with the appropriate procedures???? mmmm lets see who is the professional?


24th Jan 2003, 11:28
In the words of Boeing, Exterior Inspection, Cursory Visual Inspection, hardly an assessment of airworthiness.
MEL only referenced by crew after engine start and prior to takeoff when the appropriate non-normal procedure has been carried out, for possible dispatch relief.

I suggest you check the FAA MMEL PREAMBLE, clearly states: When an item of equipment is discovered to be inoperative, it is reported by making an entry in the Aircraft Maintenance Record/Log book as prescribed by FAR.The item is then either repaired or may be deferred per the MEL.
A pilot cannot sign off the Technical Log for Mel relief.
No mention of CDL in any Boeing Operations Manual I have anything to do with, it forms part of the AFM.
If the CDL was to be used, the maintenance Release would have been cancelled. Refer CAR's or FAR's.
Get my drift "Your Honour".
Capn Laptop,
Depending on the operator you can sign the maintenance release prior to refueling as it is considered to be a servicing item.

Oz Geek
27th Jan 2003, 22:13

Your comment:

Paying public out there don't want to be forking out extra dollars so you few can cling on to inefficient past practices that will have NO SIGNIFICANT EFFECT ON SAFETY OF THE OPERATION.

...all well and good. Are the 'paying public' going to be told what services they are getting now and what they won't be getting in the future...without a further discount in the airfare I presume!! I THINK NOT!!!:mad: :mad:

I am pretty sure I won't see Mr Branson on TV telling the public thats his airline has removed LAME inspections from his A/C...maybe his fare structure could include "A/C inspected - NOT inspected" tariffs and let the public decide.

You cannot possiblly be a Pilot with an attitude such as yours...and you are most definately not a LAME!...I'm interested to find out your connection with aviation...and how many hours behind a desk you have....(and still waiting on your response about Boeing/Pilot pre-flights).

Capt Laptop,

I think I do understand the MEL/Maint System requirements. If you'd like to re-read my referring post it says:

An MEL can be applied EVEN IF spares are available ONLY IF the Maintenance System approved by CASA allows it.

Which I believe agrees with your statement.

As for dispatching A/C with MELs applied and spares available...If you are the captain of the A/C and are not satisfied with the defect (any defect), sit the plane on the deck and have your wishes carried out!! (I'm sure your Chief Pilot will be more than happy to explain the economics of not flying a legally airworthy A/C just so those lazy LAMEs can have something to do).

Lets stay focused on the topic rather than have the usual slanging match because I'm sure you and I both know individuals of all persuasions that do little to enhance our industry.

28th Jan 2003, 05:05
Keep at it Oz Geek. It's nice to have a few on side for change!

PS Woomera. Having my sign off back would be opportune with regard this thread!

" You can teach a monkey to ride a bike..."


28th Jan 2003, 07:01

You can teach a monkey to ride a bike but I am likewise sure he is capable of learning to do a quick “walk-around”. Transit checks are nothing more than that !. Having spent a lifetime in the industry, I can quote innumerable times where qualified LAME’s have failed to pick up MAJOR defects like fuel or hydraulic leaks etc!. Most transit checks are nothing more than visual checks which any competent person can perform (Pilot or LAME). The railways did not collapse when they removed guards from a lot of the trains nor was the country side littered with wrecked airplanes when they removed flight engineers. Airlines will likewise not collapse because some qualified pilots perform some transit checks WORLDWIDE !

28th Jan 2003, 07:32
Capn Laptop,

Yes, WE are talking about preflight inspections, not daily inspections, not sure what you are on about? :rolleyes:

You want to talk about B737s, and preflights without an LAME?

One of the worst cases I have personally been involved in, (as the LAME not Pilot) was with a B737, it was nearly a disaster. :(

Not long after that British Midland B737 crash, we had a B737 operate 4 legs with no LAME. On landing at the end of the second leg, the B737 struck numerous birds. The Crew did their preflight (remember NO LAME) , and they "inspected" the engines, finding many damaged fan blades in the left engine, and no problem with the right engine. They considered the Aircraft safe to continue.

On descent on the third leg one of the engine vibration instruments went full scale high, so they shut down the left engine (the one they "knew" was the problem) and descended and landed on just the right engine. They then finally decided maybe they should get an LAME to look at it, and went off to a local Hotel for the night. :confused:

On arriving there and carrying out an inspection, although there were many damaged fan blades on the left engine, which I replaced with the spares I had brought with me, I found that the fan blades on the right engine were shingled, something the Crew missed altogether on their inspections. :eek:

The right engine was in fact the one in the worst condition, and should have been shut down, not the left. :(

I have purposely NOT named the Airline, or ports involved, however I assure you it IS true.

Oz Geek
28th Jan 2003, 22:13
Snowballs et al,

I'd like to think I agree with you. A competent person can preform a pre-flight inspection. My definition of competent is a trained, assessed and accountable person.

The issue here however is NOT whether a pilot or a LAME is more competent for the task it is that the inspection carried out by a LAME on one particular RPT A/C by one particular operator has ceased by order of the operator! Please people...stay on target!

For those who persist in mud slinging about the other side...my request is simple...WHAT DID YOU DO ABOUT IT!!! If you did nothing about a poor service standard (flight crew or Engineering) then keep your bitch to yourself because thats all it is - a petty, mud slinging unprofessional bitch.

It all boils down to money (read corporate profits)...the errosion of a safety system put in place to help safeguard the Australian flying public who for a price, pay for a service. The service IS being erroded - there is NO discount nor any disclosure to the public that this is occuring. We are not talking about meals or in-flight entertainment here which the public, by choice, do not receive we are talking about a level of safety that is being removed solely for reasons of cost to the operator!!

For those who have read this entire thread - what is the common element expressed throughout? It is that BOTH pilots AND LAMEs have missed defects on pre-flight inspections and that they have been found by the other (pilot or LAME) . THIS IS WHAT IT IS ALL ABOUT!!!!.... FINDING DEFECTS...If we all agree that this is happening where is the logical reasoning for removing that additional set of trained, assessed and accountable eyes.

Short answer is that there isn't any...it is only cost...Now the operator is selling me something at a reduced standard THAT I HAVE NOT BEEN INFORMED ABOUT. If an operator started employing pilots with low hours to save money and you where buying a ticket would you want to be told about it??

29th Jan 2003, 00:26
You are seriously OVEREACTING :rolleyes:

Firstly, assessing aircraft condition on a walkaround is NOT that big a deal and does not require 2 people (whether LAME or pilot). It's been done by 1 person (both pilots and engineers) throughout the world, quite SAFELY for a long, long time. As far as pilots being capable to do pre-flights is concerned, I did not mean to inply Boeings are only designed for such; applies to any civil aircraft that I'm aware of. Do you really think BBJs carry around a LAME or only fly to airports where BBJ certified LAMEs are available?

Secondly, it is not pratical to inform customers of every apect or change to operations. If an airline replaces a 747 with a 767 an extended overwater flight schedule, are they obligated to tell the customer? Or if a Captain newly checked out on his first day online? Or weather forecast at destination with high chance of carrying out a non-precision approach in IMC?


You can argue all day about how anything in life could be safer. The customer trusts the airline they fly to conduct their operations in an acceptable safe manner. The customer accepts there is always SOME risk (thats life), more risk say, if flying on many carriers in third world countries. But on the whole, it's a minute and IRREVELANT risk.

I think this has more to do with some of you LAME blokes would rather be wasting company time strolling around in the sunshine rather than in the hangar with your hands dirty.

Don't like it? Get another job or get a life mate.:D

29th Jan 2003, 01:06
The same thing is happening here in the uk, crews doing their own t/r. Even at main maintenance bases. The crews do it.
All very sad.:(

29th Jan 2003, 07:34
Oz Geek,

You are right geek, it is all about costs and an affordable airline service. What do you want ? The restoration of inefficient, moribund airlines like AN and $600-800 Melbourne Sydney return fares. In the 80’s engineers were even pushing to tow all aircraft to the runway end before take-off. Common sense prevailed as is happening now.
If airlines can reduce waste and cut costs so as to provide cheap affordable and safe transport, great. If this means “some” transit checks are done by pilots, so be it. Nobody has suggested pilots sign off defects or apply MEL’s, but to suggest LAME’s, if you think they are the only people qualified to do so, must carry out ALL transit checks on safety grounds is patently absurd and the thinking of a ludite.
It is common practice all over the world ! NOTHING is being compromised except waste and inefficient work practices. :p

29th Jan 2003, 10:05
So has there been any accident or incident in the 10-14 years that Dash 8, Short's, Saab's and Brasilia's have been operating in Australia where all the turn around checks have been carried out by pilots and in some cases the daily inspections, no there hasn't. They may not be a jet but they are machines, so what can go wrong on 737 can go wrong on a 36-50 seat turboprop. Has the safety of passengers been put at risk, no.

This is the year 2003 we have come a long way since the DC3 was the queen of the skies.