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No landing clearance on short final

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No landing clearance on short final

Old 10th Dec 2009, 22:22
  #41 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2008
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follow the lost comms procedure which ends in an uncleared landing anyway
Yes, it does. But following the lost comms procedure gives ATC time to PLAN, and ensure that the runway is clear when you need to use it.

You are the PIC, you look outside, you decide
Not true. Unless you have an emergency, it is ATC who decide who gets the runway and when.

The lost comms procedure is there for a reason. Pilots who ignore procedures such as this are a danger to themselves and other airspace users, and in my view should not be allowed to fly.

I guess that's now my 4c.
GBOACdave is offline  
Old 10th Dec 2009, 23:02
  #42 (permalink)  
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I'm not really offering this up as an arguament. I am PIC of a UK passenger a/c (when at work) and I'm simply pointing out what I would do.

Now, in the years I've been flying, the issue we are discussing has never happened to me. So it's not a prevalent issue, that's for sure.

For the purposes of the arguament tho', Our airline has a SOP. I'm closely guided by it and it helps me in the operation.

The Rules of the Air have similar influence.

At work. I mainly do as I please. Naturally, it usually 'pleases' me to conform with both the SOP and the Rules of the Air.

Flying is a practical job though. Not like, for example, accountancy.

If I need to step out of the SOP the airline has given me the required permission. The last 'SOP' says 'disregard any of the SOP if you need to'

Like I posted earlier, if I was 100% sure it was clear I'd land.

Might have to do an ASR, but can't see anything worse happening.

Blundering about class A airspace with no comms, and possibly cocking up the well thought out lost comms procedure (probably 'cos you haven't briefed it, or even thought about it) seems to me to have many possibly unfavourable outcomes.

Last edited by BarbiesBoyfriend; 10th Dec 2009 at 23:14.
Old 11th Dec 2009, 09:33
  #43 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Australia
Posts: 28
Yep, had it happen - on short final, expecting late landing clearance as one ahead clears the rwy. Just as he clears, the turkey behind me had been instructed to contact the tower and pushes the tit to give a longwinded initial contact. Meantime I am about to touch down, can't get a clearance in time so I go round. Wx is gin clear, and next txmn from ATC was why did I go round.
reallyoldfart is offline  
Old 11th Dec 2009, 09:51
  #44 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Wilmslow and North Yorks
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Posts: 402
Why is this even being discussed?

If you don't have clearance (notwithstanding the emergency issues) you GO-AROUND.

Unless of course you enjoy being filed against by ATC....

ComJam is offline  
Old 11th Dec 2009, 10:27
  #45 (permalink)  
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and next txmn from ATC was why did I go round.
Well, we need to find out why....for all ATC knew you might have had a problem with the gear, or any number of other issues. We try not to guess!
Gonzo is offline  
Old 11th Dec 2009, 12:46
  #46 (permalink)  
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Our airline has a SOP. I'm closely guided by it and it helps me in the operation.

The Rules of the Air have similar influence
Whether your airline allows you to step outside your SOPs or not doesn't concern me; what does concern me, though, are the Rules of the Air. These are not there to influence nor guide, they are to be adhered to. Your airline does not have the right to say that you do not have to abide by them, and neither do you.

As has been mentioned before, without a specific clearance from ATC, a pilot cannot be 100% sure that the RW is clear. The controller is the one person with the most accurate information about who is occupying the runway.

Might have to do an ASR, but can't see anything worse happening
Really? I can. Consider what happened between two 747s - KLM and PanAm at a certain Canary Island. Granted, this was at takeoff rather than landing, but it is not a giant leap to see how similar factors could apply here.

possibly cocking up the well thought out lost comms procedure
It is the responsibility of the PIC to ensure that they are able to fly said procedure. If you think it is possible you may 'cock up' a well thought out procedure such as this, what other procedures could be 'cocked up'?

I agree that this is not a prevalent issue, but there is a possibility that it could happen. As I have said earlier, if the pilot is in an emergency situation then of course they will land if they feel it is the safest thing to do. Having your radios go on strike is not one of these occasions.

It certainly is.
GBOACdave is offline  
Old 11th Dec 2009, 13:06
  #47 (permalink)  
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If only everything was as 'black and white' eh?

Hands up the pilot whose never broken a rule or cocked something up.

Last edited by BarbiesBoyfriend; 11th Dec 2009 at 19:04.
Old 11th Dec 2009, 23:13
  #48 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: There's no place like home!
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Barbie, I'm sorry but I have to agree completely with everything that BOACDave has said. "Shades of Grey" are not something that anyone in this industry are comfortable with! That's why so much effort goes into legislating, regulating, training, and maintaining standards on an on-going basis, as well as applying lessons learned.

You are right (thankfully) when you say that it is not by any means a prevalent occurrence (at least not in the UK anyway), but that is exactly why ATCO's have minimum mandatory TRUCE training requirements. So that we get to tease out all of the permutations and possible responses to exactly these types of unusual circumstances.

Basically, we trust you guys to do your job, so it therefore follows that we expect you to trust us to do ours. Is it not standard practice for APR to vector inbound traffic clear of the Missed Approach Procedure anyway?!?
So, if there is no clearance received by minima then follow procedure and sort it out afterwards. Believe me, unless there is a bloody good reason for the lack of clearance/go-around, the tower ATCO concerned is going to find him/herself in a world of pain.
EastCoaster is offline  
Old 13th Dec 2009, 08:35
  #49 (permalink)  
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From the UK AIP:

ENR 1.1.3 GENERAL FLIGHT PROCEDURES A flight experiencing communication failure in IMC shall:

(f)...When practical, pilots should take account of visual landing aids and
keep watch for instructions that may be issued by visual signals from the ground.

(g) If communications failure occurs during an approach directed by radar, continue visually...

In answer to the original question, it seems that if communication failure occurs on short final, then to land without having received a clearance is the correct thing to do. (My bold)

Giles Wembley-Hogg is offline  
Old 13th Dec 2009, 08:40
  #50 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2003
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As an aside, not all airlines require a clearance to land by DH/MDA. A point may be specified for AWOPs though.

Giles Wembley-Hogg is offline  
Old 13th Dec 2009, 10:56
  #51 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2009
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If you dont get a landing clearance,dont land! (my airline minima for a go around if no clearance was 50 ft RA)

However -if an aircraft has just taken off and blocks the GA path/altitude
-you are unfamiliar with loss comm procedure of the runway in use(reading barby magazines rather than your jepps manual)
-you have a technical problem that would make a GA problematic(flight controls/low fuel/emergency)
-you have no clue what you are doing
i suggest you land and be ready to answer many questions and fill in forms,,ESPECIALLY if ATC had a valid reason not to issue you a landing clearance.
skyeuropecapt is offline  
Old 13th Dec 2009, 10:57
  #52 (permalink)  
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Thanks for that.

In other words, 'land already!'

How very sensible.

You ATC guys need to get your noses in them books!

Last edited by BarbiesBoyfriend; 13th Dec 2009 at 11:15.
Old 13th Dec 2009, 13:10
  #53 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: uk
Posts: 194
You can't cherry pick the air pilot for bits that you like and disregard the bits that don't suit your train of "thought"
That piece that you have quoted from is a small part of a long section, and the sentence about looking for the visual signals etc would be AFTER having completed an procedural approach etc NOT losing comms on short final.
As an aside do pilots know about visual signals anymore anyway? What visual signal would you look for to land -and , more importantly , not land?

Barbie - maybe you might want to actually look at the books, your unprofessional attitude worries me frankly.

loubylou is offline  
Old 13th Dec 2009, 15:38
  #54 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2000
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I think maybe the Americans have it right here

"Landing Clearance - Expect to receive landing clearances with one or more aircraft
still ahead of your aircraft. The clearance you are receiving is to land in sequence if it
is safe to do so. This sort of landing clearance requires special vigilance at night."

The above is a quote from BA's Route Information Manual.

The US system is alien at first, but on reflection, it puts the onus back in the flight deck. On the rare occasion that there is a blocked mic and a specific late clearance is not received it works well, you have already been cleared to land if it is deemed safe.

It is not dis-similar to the LHR 'land after' clearance, which when I flew the Airbus I was happy to receive (and even asked for on occasion), in that it gives the captain the decision.
TopBunk is offline  
Old 13th Dec 2009, 17:11
  #55 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: UK
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But Loubylou, we've already established from a previous poster that the airport at which I conduct almost 50% of my landings is not equipped to give any visual signals.

Perhaps better references would have been as follows:

4.2.3 Visual Meteorological Conditions (VMC) For the purposes of these procedures, ATC will expect an IFR flight following the ATS route structure to adopt the
IMC procedure in paragraph 4.2.4. If there is an overriding safety reason, the pilot may adopt the VMC procedure.

I don't think that being on short final counts as "following the ATS route structure" and even if you argue that it does, this paragraph only details what ATC will expect, it does not mandate my following of the IMC procedure. Subject to the provisions of paragraph, an IFR flight experiencing communication failure in VMC shall:
When VMC can be maintained, the pilot should set transponder to Mode A, Code 7600 with Mode C and land at the nearest
suitable aerodrome.

Since I am on short final, I would suggest the airport ahead is the nearest suitable.

Giles Wembley-Hogg is offline  
Old 13th Dec 2009, 18:19
  #56 (permalink)  
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Correct-amundo. Again.
Old 13th Dec 2009, 19:31
  #57 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: uk
Posts: 194
The original post was about a blocked frequency/loss of comms on short final, I would expect a go around to be executed. Blocked frequency - go back to the previous. Radio failure - follow the Loss of Comms procedure appropriate to the airfield, and subsequently effect a landing.

However - well done on finding a better AIP reference.

In the circumstance that you now describe, having already had an R/T failure en-route - then indeed you would follow the Loss of Comms Procedure that you found.

What happened to Good Airmanship?

loubylou is offline  
Old 13th Dec 2009, 19:45
  #58 (permalink)  
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Who are you to talk about airmanship?

Or even to question somebody else's?

Are you an airman?
Old 13th Dec 2009, 20:01
  #59 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: uk
Posts: 194

The clue is in the forum name dear.

loubylou is offline  
Old 13th Dec 2009, 20:10
  #60 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Wilmslow and North Yorks
Age: 49
Posts: 402
Hmm, if we go back to the title of the thread "No landing clearance on short final"....

You are expecting a late landing clearance but someone is blocking the frequency, hence you don't receive the clearance in time. Or you lose communication on approach. What would you do?
In my opinion (and I am an airman) to continue the approach and land would show a lack of airmanship.
ComJam is offline  

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