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ATC Humour (Merged)

Old 11th Dec 2002, 07:15
  #241 (permalink)  
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...........sorry for mine on the xponder - notice that line up and go wrote it way back in August. That's what comes of starting to read from the back - must have summat to do with Flight magazine. My source is at Shoreham now, and was also at Gut when there were Vamps and Venoms there.

I was out in Amman last year with a bunch of GA aircraft (14 in all), from Piper twins to a Cessna 170 (very important because it was flown by the group's engineer, a diminutive Frenchman who always wears two pairs of glasses). After various arguments with Markas' ATC, via the ground handler, about who departs last (they wanted the C170 last because he was the smallest, thus the slowest....logic) we won, because we were with the organisers and had to do the official farewells, etc.
Terrific wind, meaning that the C170 had to be held on to whilst taxying which I elected to do with my pilot mate. I held on to the wingstrut, while matey had a piece of cord attached to the tailwheel. Off we run, engineer in a hurry, matey drops the string, I'm flying from the strut, trying to get him to slow down a bit (what's that in frog?) until we get to the intersection. Handler converses with ATC who enquire if I intend being dragged onto the active runway. Explain the necessity otherwise....etc. More exchanges with ATC, who then demand that Fox Charly Echo backtracks (Christopher - he already wanted to take off from the taxiway!!). So I put me foot down and scream, so there can be no mistake: 'I'm not runnin' all that f***ing way!'

We won the day, and took Aqaba...
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Old 11th Dec 2002, 18:14
  #242 (permalink)  
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Overheard on a certain Central Sector at LACC

"Baby xxx contact Brest control channel 132.830"

"Baby to Brest"!!!

Shame there wasn't a SAY callsign following, or we could have had some suckling too!!!
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Old 12th Dec 2002, 00:21
  #243 (permalink)  
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.......gotta tell ya about Aqaba.....
We're tootling along in our Twin Com enroute Amman - Aqaba, it was already late because of the separation Amman demanded in between each of 14 departures, plus the farting around with Charlie Echo. So it's getting dusky, and we see from the Jepps that there is some interesting terrain in the way, directly prior to letdown. MSA something like FL65. We get a letdown to FL20, which my mate doesn't relish for some reason, so I tell Aqaba that we prefer to remain at safety level. Accepted. That means, hwvr, that we have a sort of kamikaze dive after passing said hills to get into Aqaba. In the dwindling light. At some point something tells me that Aqaba can speak super French, we were listening to others we had caught up with being talked down, but the fat controller was suddenly talking frog! Well, the first arrival was an aircraft flown by an Orly ATCO, who realised that some of the 14, mostly French, might need assistance. So upon arrival he sprinted up to the tower, grabbed the mike, and took over. Gawd knows what might have happened had he not done so. I recall the feeling of relief at seeing the curvature of the coastline and the glisten of the sea that marked the end of that epic journey. I wonder what Eilat was making of all of this!
Sean Connery had beaten us to it in 'his' BBJ.

Come time to depart, the proud airport manager tells us we are the first to use his smart new apron. Bit of tarmac surrounds this white expanse. One French pilot who always had to be the first taxies forward and turns on this lovely bit of tarmac. Whoomp! Stbd u/c falls in hole that Manager wanted to fill with lighting. Mooney is hauled out, bent straight, and frog plus wife depart without doing a cautionary circuit, to the north, turning left instead of right (obviously didn't want to climb until terrain reached on the right). Israel had a field day that day!

Another Frenchman who's English was....er....er taxied to the intersection, and was instructed to backtrack, so he did a wild 180 and returned to the apron where he turned right onto a gravel path along the fence, parallel to the runway. He disappeared over the horizon with a bemused airport manager in pursuit in his Landrover. Obviously found a way onto the rwy, as we heard the growl of a Cessna 337 departing. At least he did things right after that, except.......

....we all cleared outbound at Hurghada and were enroute to Rhodes. Said concrete mixer-driver was asked for an estimate for point X, somewhere near Cyprus. ....er....er...(it took him 5 minutes to give his callsign - familiar?)....er....so-and-so. What? calls the control authority, I forget which, you will reach point X in 20 minutes? Do you mean perhaps at so-and so - hours later? At which monsieur replies...er...er...affirm. Not a CLUE! But two hours would have been about right.

Rhodes was fine, except we didn't get a green ( a Twin Com has one green light, not three, for the undercarriage). So our landing was made with trepidation. Apparently, when you have certain lights on in a TC, the green u/c light won't perform.

I continued in a German C337 whose pilot offered to drop me off in Egelsbach and that, as they say, is another story.

Hope I haven't bored you.
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Old 12th Dec 2002, 09:33
  #244 (permalink)  
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Still waiting for the chance to have the following exchange:

"Baby xxx descend FL 270 to be level by xxx"

"Is that descend now or at pilot's discretion?"

"You can go down any time you like, Baby!"

(Preferably the pilot should be female!)
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Old 12th Dec 2002, 14:30
  #245 (permalink)  
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O'Hare Approach Control: "United 329 heavy, your traffic is a Fokker, one o'clock, three miles, eastbound."

United 239: "Approach, I've always wanted to say this... I've got the little Fokker in sight."

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Old 21st Dec 2002, 11:53
  #246 (permalink)  

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1. Twr to Shorts 360 on downwind: You're number three to land, you're following an Islander on three mile final.

SH36: Is that him abeam me now?

TWR: Well, is it an Islander?

SH36: Just looks like an aeroplane to me...

TWR: Well, he's one up on you then........

2. A story from the old Brisbane airport in the early 80's. Aircraft taxying to terminal after landing 04 used to pass quite close to the tower. One old time pilot whose voice we all knew used to flip us the finger as he said gday on his way past (I think it might have actually been two fingers in those days). Of course we all knew the routine and gave a mass showing of fingers thrusting skyward.

It was only later we found that he would have just made a PA announcement... "If those passengers on the left hand side of the aircraft look out the window now, they'll see the friendly boys in the tower hard at work....."

3. A semi-legend (CC) at Coolangatta to B727 filling the window while aircraft on runway stuffs around:

TWR: TBJ you're gonna have to waffle around on final

TBJ: That's unacceptable, tower

TWR: Roger, standby for go round instructions.

TBJ: OK, we'll waffle........

4. And another one etched into the pages of history from when Coolangatta was procedural: No names, no pack drill, but his daughter is an Olympic gold medal swimmer

TWR: (absolutely stuck for a procedural separation standard in a busy sequence): THI, can you imagine a line between Southport and Canungra?

THI: Affirmative, Tower.

TWR: Roger, remain north of that line!

5. And one copied from Jandakot's home page:

TWR: CDE, is this a touch and go or a full stop?

CDE: A full stop, Tower.

TWR: Roger, go round!

Last edited by Binoculars; 21st Dec 2002 at 12:12.
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Old 22nd Dec 2002, 17:42
  #247 (permalink)  
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Radar controller in a sticky situation: two a/c, parallel vectored but on the wrong sides. No chance of a vertical solution or a 'make a 360' solution due to traffic behind.

ATC: a/c 1, do you see the a/c on your right?
a/c1: Affirm
ATC: a/c 2, do you see the a/c on your left?
a/c2: Affirm
ATC: you guys able to maintain VFR for the next 1 min?
a/c1: Affirm
a/c2: Affirm
ATC: OK, now swap!

The amazing thing was that they actually did!
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Old 31st Dec 2002, 21:33
  #248 (permalink)  
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The other day at Hamilton, New Zealand (NZHN 122.9MHz) there was a female trainee controller on the frequency (every now and then you could hear her OJTI (instructor) talking in the background).

The controller had a C206 transitting the Control Zone to the south (ZK-EJE) and a 152 (ZK-EJZ - similar callsign) taxiing on the ground. Needing to check the position of the C206 (ZK-EJE) before clearing a southbound Saab 340 for takeoff the following was heard:

Trainee ATCO: "Echo Juliet Zulu, report level and position"
ZK-EJZ (a particularly quick thinking instructor): "172feet (aerodrome elevation) at Holding Point Charlie"
Trainee ATCO: "Ahhhhhh.....Roger?!?" [sounds of raucous laughter from the instructor in the background]

FOr the next few minutes everytime the trainee spoke you could hear the instructor wetting himself in the background.
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Old 3rd Jan 2003, 18:21
  #249 (permalink)  
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SR-71 stories

In his book, "Sled Driver", SR-71/Blackbird pilot Brian Shul writes:

"I'll always remember a certain radio exchange that occurred one day as Walt
(his backseater) and I were screaming across Southern California, 13 miles
high. We were monitoring various radio transmissions from other aircraft,
as we entered Los Angeles airspace. Though they didn't really control us,
they did monitor our movement across their scope. I heard a Cessna ask for
a readout of its ground speed."

"90 knots" Center replied.

Moments later, a Twin Beech required the same.

"120 knots," Center answered.

"We weren't the only ones proud of our groundspeed that day.. as almost
instantly an F-18 smugly transmitted,

"Ah, Center, Dusty 52 requests groundspeed readout."

"There was a slight pause, then the response,

"525 knots on the ground, Dusty".

Another silent pause. As I was thinking to myself how ripe a situation this
was, I heard a familiar click of a radio transmission coming from my
backseater. It was at that precise moment I realized Walt and I had become
a real crew, for we were both thinking in unison.

"Center, Aspen 20, you got a groundspeed readout for us?" There was a
longer than normal pause.... "Aspen, I show 1,742 knots."

"No further inquiries were heard on that frequency"


In another famous SR-71 story, Los Angeles Center reported receiving a
request for clearance to FL 60 (60,000 ft).

The incredulous controller, with some disdain in his voice, asked, "How
exactly do you plan to get up to 60,000 feet?

The pilot (obviously a sled driver), responded, "We don't plan to go up to
it, we plan to go down to it."

He was cleared...

UFO Bloke
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Old 3rd Jan 2003, 22:07
  #250 (permalink)  
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Excellent post, UFO Bloke - I've read that story in Sled Driver myself and it's one of my favourites.

I have heard tell of another amusing SR-71 story, but I can't find confirmation anywhere - unless someone out there knows better...?

Anyway, the story (true or otherwise) goes that the first flight of the SR to RAF Mildenhall from Beale AFB went slightly wrong. While flying along at Mach 3, roughly 1nm every two seconds, the crew missed the TOD (top of descent point) by about 90 seconds. Unfortunately, they had completely overshot the entire United Kingdom and had to do a U-turn somewhere over the North Sea!!!


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Old 4th Jan 2003, 17:43
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Another amusing SR-71 story - this time from "Blackbird Rising" by Donn A. Byrnes and Kenneth D. Hurley. Late in 1965 or early in 1966, the third SR built ('952 for those who are interested) was undertaking some high-altitude, high-speed testing over New Mexico. During a turn, the inner engine inlet "unstarted" increasing the bank angle beyond the point at which recovery was possible. The SR then split into two parts just ahead of the wing. Although ejector seats were fitted, both occupants were unconcious and unable to eject: one survived when he was thrown clear of the aircraft, sadly the rear-seat occupant died.

Many thousands of feet below the stricken SR-71, a number of commercial aircraft were flying. The radio comments apparently went something like this:

A/C: "Albuquerque Centre! Albuquerque Centre! This is XXXX. There has been a huge explosion out here at an altitude way above us."

There was a long pause and then a tense but controlled voice from Albuquerque Centre came on the air, "Ah, XXXX, please disregard."

A/C: "Albuquerque Centre, you don't understand. It's a big explosion and there are parachutes and debris falling."

Another long pause before Centre replied, "Ah, Roger XXXX, please disregard."

A/C: "Albuquerque, there is something bad happening and you better get someone out here immediately."

Yet another long pause, then "Ah, XXXX, this is Albuquerque Centre, please disregard."

After a long pause, another aircraft reported: "Albuquerque Centre, this is YYYY. We didn't see it too."

I'd give 11 out of 10 to the ATC'er who remembered their security briefing on SR-71 flights!



(Apologies to all the Americans for spelling "Centre" correctly all the way through - but I'm too lazy to go back and fix it! )
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Old 5th Jan 2003, 16:35
  #252 (permalink)  
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Blackbird stories

Hi MD,

Your story is almost true but here is the official version. I know as I was that controller. The Blackbird was competing in a race from overhead New York to overhead London and I was briefed to ‘clock’ it in as it passed overhead London. (I was a military ATCO covering the London overhead at the time - 1972) The Blackbird was out of primary radar cover so I was tracking it on SSR. As it passed over London heading East I gave it a left turn for Mildenhall and then watched aghast as it commenced it’s very very wide turn and disappeared towards Holland descending through a very high Mode C readout. Being a smart ATCO I instructed the pilot to ‘strangle his parrot’ and report when steady heading 270. When he did I asked him to report his altitude and then told him to continue. After a bit of dead reckoning I instructed him to squawk my code and picked him up over the North Sea about 30 miles east of Gt Yarmouth at about FL 330 descending !! God knows how far he had penetrated German airspace but with no SSR and probably above their primary cover maybe I had got away with it. There is one other ATCO who knows the story but you won’t tell will you Pete ?
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Old 8th Jan 2003, 15:22
  #253 (permalink)  
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Area of Intense aerial activity

ATC: 'Callsign XXX, for noise abatement turn left 45 degrees'
A/C 'Confirm turn for noise abatement, we are over the sea at FL60?'
ATC: Affirm, have you heard the noise a DHC6 makes when it hits a Nimrod?'
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Old 12th Jan 2003, 02:55
  #254 (permalink)  
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A DC-10 had an exceedingly long roll out after landing with his approach speed a little high.

San Jose Tower: “American 751 heavy, turn right at the end of the runway, if able. If not able, take the Guadalupe exit off Highway 101, make a right at the lights and return to the airport."

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Old 19th Jan 2003, 18:36
  #255 (permalink)  
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ATC: Aeroflot XXX proceed direct VUT.

AFL XXX: Ummm... say again?

ATC: Aeroflot XXX present position direct Victor Uniform Tango.

AFL XXX: Aaahhh... rrrogerrr, proceeding direct WHISKY UNIFORM TANGO.

ATC: NEGATIVE !!! Its VODKA Uniform Tango...
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Old 21st Jan 2003, 09:44
  #256 (permalink)  
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Hi all,

a couple for you:

Situation: EKCH TWR, heavy inbound traffic for both parallels, a SAS Commuter Fokker 50 approaching the holding point of 22R with a slot that's becoming tight. Female colleague 'manning' the position.

SAS: Tower, Scandinavian 645, ready for departure
TWR: SAS645, I've got traffic on 3 miles final...errr...stand by
(Short pause while she coordinates with the colleague working the parallel runway)
TWR: SAS645, Are you ready for a quick one?
SAS: Sure ma'am, but I have to go to Hamburg first...

Had the pleasure of visiting JFK Tower during a trip to New York some years ago. One of the controllers told me this, reportedly expericenced by himself a few days earlier:

An AA 757 is coming out of the AA terminal cul-de-sac at high speed, checking in on the TWR frequency. Controller asks: "Why the hurry?" and the reply, although a bit garbled, sounds exactly like "I have a dangerous cargo".
"Okay" thinks our hero, "better give this guy priority in the departure sequence." This is done and furthermore a message about this particular flight having a dangerous cargo is passed along down the line thru the ATC system.
After the flight has reached O'Hare airport in record time, the ORD controller asks the pilot: "AAxxx would you need any special assistance when parking?"
AA: "Errr...no...why d'ya ask???" (sounding quite baffled)
TWR: "Well, understand that you told JFK TWR that you had a dangerous cargo..."
AA: "Nonono, I said I have a date in Chicago !!!"

Keep'em coming...

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Old 22nd Jan 2003, 09:11
  #257 (permalink)  
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Overheard on EKCH departure freq:

"Departure, BTI134 out of 1500 feet" (very strong easteuropean accent)

"Roger BTI134, Turn on your transponder"

"Loger Loger, turning right heading 100, BTI 134"
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Old 25th Jan 2003, 20:32
  #258 (permalink)  
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People in Africa 2

Here's a couple from JHB Intl:

Trainee on freq, "Springbok ***, confiirm you are not on frequency?".

Another trainee, female this time working tower with a cessna on final and a jet right behind. The cessna asks her for a deep landing since his apron is at the far end of the runway.

Not familiar with "Expedite vacating" she says,"Make it deep, but get off quickly!"

Double transmissions for 5 min after!
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Old 27th Jan 2003, 05:23
  #259 (permalink)  
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Just had a call from a female F/O on company freq asking me to "have a look at her slot !"

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Old 29th Jan 2003, 16:18
  #260 (permalink)  
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This actually happened to me 2 nights ago whilst squeezing the proverbial quart into a pint pot that is the 0600-0700 hour at EGLL. The scene - me trying to get them as close as possible using 27L & 27R and I thought I'd better tell a BA 747 on 27L that he was closing "slightly" on an SAA 747 on 27R

Me - "BAW***, you may see traffic in your 1 o'clock, range 2.5 miles, a Springbok 747 established on 27R"

BAW*** "Oh yes, we have it in sight - we thought it was OUR strobes!" :o

Last edited by surfingatco; 29th Jan 2003 at 17:28.
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