Australia, New Zealand & the Pacific Airline and RPT Rumours & News in Australia, enZed and the Pacific

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Old 7th Aug 2014, 00:38
  #1541 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: asia
Posts: 191

I still stand by my comments about the planning.

I don't have a copy of FCOM and, unless it forms part of your CASA Operations Manual, it doesn't matter.
The only approved document is the Company Fuel Policy as approved by CASA.
The aircraft manufacturer probably has much good information as part of the systems study material but, is that the planning method approved by CASA?
Not that I particularly care about CASA but, if the crew didn't comply with the Casa approved Company Fuel Policy, they have left themselves exposed.

Does the Company Fuel Policy state something like: Use the Manufacturer's methods of Flight Planning and fuel uplift calculations?
Probably not.

My point regarding the drug issue was only prompted by your comments.
I don't know the pilot involved but, you appeared to be a the cheer squad from his defence team and you didn't mention that he claimed innocence of the charge . I just wondered, considering the several test that had been done on him.
Thank you for pointing that out.
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Old 7th Aug 2014, 01:23
  #1542 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Weltschmerz-By-The-Sea, Queensland, Australia
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Regarding the narrow issue of adequate fuel and the means for ascertaining same:

Is it policy at TigerAir that the minimum required fuel may only be determined by the admittedly poorly trained company flight planning clerks?

As the pilot in command and the only person so designated surely the captain would be able to employ any means available (readin', writin', 'rethmetic) to decide if he had at least minimum fuel pre-flight? To suggest that the planning clerk is a better judge of that is depressing.

When faced with similar situations in the past I have opted for lots of extra fuel rather than wait for a new plan. So I tankered an extra couple of tonnes? The cost of that might run to $175, cheap to avoid a delay or other costly event.

That's what the initial episode amounts to: fail to (wrongly, as it turns out) seen to be prudent, and a couple of hundred bucks.
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Old 7th Aug 2014, 01:28
  #1543 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: BrisVegas
Posts: 134
You don't know Tiger!

Australopithecus, this is the company that communicated to the flight deck crew not to put a new paper roll in the ACARS printer in order to save money.

What do they cost $1?

$175 extra in fuel when you are selling seats for $10 might send the company broke...oh!
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Old 7th Aug 2014, 09:01
  #1544 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Sydney
Posts: 5
Are you referring to AO-2014-003 OEB? If so...calm your horses mate that was a Jet* aircraft
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Old 7th Aug 2014, 09:37
  #1545 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Hong Kong
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Twas the former actually but perhaps poorly phrased.

Apart from all that, I agree with your other colourful and evocative imagery

Last edited by VR-HFX; 7th Aug 2014 at 09:55.
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Old 7th Aug 2014, 10:26
  #1546 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 548
I agree SS all I could see were Jet* incidents.
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Old 7th Aug 2014, 11:48
  #1547 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Australia
Posts: 186
You're starting to lose your credibility OEB, when you write silly posts like your last one.

You said earlier what you felt needed to be said. Now let due process run its course.
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Old 7th Aug 2014, 12:35
  #1548 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2012
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international Trader

OMFG, unless I missed something on their fuel situation on arrival in Perth, I'd say the following.

For starters what computerised FP system doesn't give winds >,< the FP lvl? So he had winds, it only requires him to put a reasonable ZFW in to arrive at reasonable BO after reviewing the OPT/Max FL to determine what FL is available at the "new" weight.

As to what FP method is approved what a lawyer has told me is it is the CAR requirement for determining the required fuel for the flt that will determine if legal action is possible against the PIC, and that is winds, wx, contingency etc. Not where you extracted the data.

If you ask me he just showed basic common sense. Since you're in Asia ask any of your mates in HK what their employer would say if they missed a curfew on those grounds.

As to HH's CRM style, while no mate of his I'd not hesitate to describe his demeanour/CRM as middle of the road. If you'd have a problem flying with him I'm guessing you'd have a problem with most captains. His position is also CP (HFO), not CRM related so I don't see where that comes into it, he's looking after the Co's AOC, not holding hands. Your comments are nothing but a gutless character assassination.

As to the PIC's drug testing over the past 5 mths, had you considered this may be as a result of the same person or someone affiliated with them who "informed" CASA of his alleged "habit". This is just smoke/fire crap without a shred of evidence, as likely shown by the fact he DIDN'T fail one of them.
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Old 7th Aug 2014, 12:44
  #1549 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: My arse crack
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Somewhereat1, ref the paper roll, it's not to save money, word is it's been tasked to the engineers to do that.
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Old 7th Aug 2014, 12:58
  #1550 (permalink)  
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Sheesh, an axe to grind much OEB?
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Old 7th Aug 2014, 13:57
  #1551 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Weltschmerz-By-The-Sea, Queensland, Australia
Posts: 958
Carriers in trouble and flight safety...

Regarding the ACARS paper...yeah, its worth a buck, but probably costs $20. But I take the point that they want the engineers to perform that daunting feat of dexterity.

The entire LCC business model seems to be softening in most countries. There are exceptions of course, but Tiger is not one of them, anywhere. The supply of gullible punters is finite, and its limits have been reached. Marginal revenue is drying up: anecdotal evidence suggests that people are packing there own jumpers and muffins.

Since LCCs compete directly on cost only, the market is by definition price sensitive. There are too many cheap seats in the market place right now, as amply vouched in many articles and recent speeches by the other players. I witnessed this first hand in the UK back in the day when the charter carriers eventually got down to a 50p per seat profit. One bird strike offset the profits from 2 million absurd situation that could only ever end in tears. Which it did.

Getting back to this obsession with micro-managing costs. At its least logical many enterprises end while a $1000/day man is busy chasing $5 savings initiatives. Who am I kidding? Usually its three or four of them on twice that money.

Flight safety cannot be delivered by a carrier who is kiting cheques to keep the doors open. It cannot be delivered, ultimately, by people unable to recognise their own shortcomings. A big ego might be good sometimes, but not near an airport.

The foregoing ignores the much greater problem at the regulator, which deserves as much scrutiny and collective indignation as we can muster. This country and this industry both deserve much much better than being the playthings of apparent phsycopaths and their eager sycophants.

Last edited by Australopithecus; 7th Aug 2014 at 13:59. Reason: *sycophants...still trying to decide between that and "lickspittle flunkies"
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Old 7th Aug 2014, 15:08
  #1552 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Sand and dust, I hate the dust and I hate the sand
Posts: 113

16 March in the year of Lord 2007 Tiger Airways Australia Pty. Ltd. was incorporated in the Northern Territory and committed A$10 million to start the subsidiary.
Grossly under-capitalised

The airline's business model is still based on that of sister airline Tiger Airways, which attempts to increase the total market size (number of passengers), control operating costs, and maximise the number of sectors served.
Sounds feasible

One way it planned to keep costs low was by avoiding expensive airports.
And the winner is (wait for it) Sydney

Tiger undertook the final stage of Australian regulatory procedures on 20 November 2007, successfully performing two proving flights from Melbourne to the Sunshine Coast and Launceston
Both in the same day, by the same crew, to save costs and meet the launch dead line. Welcome to low cost

Each carried officials from the Civil Aviation Safety Authority as well as Tiger crew. Tiger received its Air Operator's Certificate on 22 November.
With nil operational observations or Required Corrective Actions (RCAs). (Ground services received two observations)

Tiger Airways Australia's first scheduled flight was TT 7402, which departed from Melbourne for the Gold Coast on 23 November 2007.
With nil observations or RCAs

Tiger hummed along very happily under the watchful and gentile eye of ‘The Broomy’ until his departure.
They even had a TV show

Since then Tiger has not removed itself from CASAs RCA desk or the headlines and the serious deterioration and lack of error traps continues.

People who use 'back in the day' and 'sycophants' are absolute rock stars in my opinion.
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Old 7th Aug 2014, 21:20
  #1553 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Styx Houseboat Park.
Posts: 2,053
The is policy law question – Again.

The only approved document is the Company Fuel Policy as approved by CASA.
Is it policy at TigerAir that the minimum required fuel may only be determined by the admittedly poorly trained company flight planning clerks?
Both comments fatally flawed: It's all getting a bit silly, ain't it. Had either of the Mildura aircraft ran out of fuel as did the hapless Pel Air Westwind; all the half arsed 'policy' in the world won't save the Captain. In fact (provided the 'policy' is sound) it will be used against, in a heart beat, to clearly demonstrate that it was no fault of the company or the regulator . Why?, well because if policy and guidelines are sound; it isn't. The responsibilities of the PIC are defined 'in law', not by policy.

The 'minimum' fuel plan provided is a 'suggestion'; not a requirement. I'd bet a Choccy frog that 97% of the pro pilots here could, using a simple 'rule of thumb' method, nut out a 'minimum' fuel load for a proposed flight, while in the shower. That rough number maybe further modified while driving in, listening to the news and weather forecast.

To finesse that 'rough' number into a final uplift requires lots of additional data, some obvious, some not so. Ops, despatch, flight planning, by whatever name do the donkey work, and provide a suggested 'Min fuel'; but, no matter how much 'policy' fluff is built into the system, that is pretty much where their obligations end and those of the PIC begin. Policy will only get you to the starting gate; and, provided the case you argue errs on the safe side; a breech of policy (IMO) is an internal matter for the CP – "Why did you land with five ton on board?" - Bloggs" – "Well boss, I just couldn't get anymore on". This is much better than "Why did you run out of noise?" – Bloggs - "Well boss, I followed the policy and went with minimum fuel".

IF the CASA accepted, company generated fuel policy is 'sound', the operational support competent and the system flexible enough, then neither of the above should occur. If they do, then the fleet PIC should be generating memo's to SMS to get it sorted out; before a Pel Air or Mildura repeat lands in someone's back yard. The time consuming desperation to satisfy the CASA needs and to gain 'acceptance' (not ever approval) should not be the underlying premise on which a fuel 'policy' is based. Gods alone know what tortured machinations were 'required' to obtain the 'acceptance' (not approval) while under the duress of being grounded with the attendant public condemnation.

It's part of the job, this art of juggling maximum payload, weather, fuel cost, operational considerations (mandatory and possible). Seems to me the PIC may have 'breached' a SOP which is a disciplinary matter (maybe) but complied with the 'law of command'. If, indeed in this instance that command prerogative is 'administratively' taken away; then command of the aircraft has been stolen and gifted, by the aircrew, to the clerical department.

What I am driving at is the uncertainty generated when 'policy' takes precedence over law; some pilots will start to take max fuel to cover their arses one way; some will depart with recommended minimum to cover their arses another. When in fact the entire final fuel figure is entirely, utterly, completely and ultimately the sole responsibility of the PIC. The rest just buys heated swimming pools, trophy wives and expensive wines for lawyers..

None of this is clearly defined here; but, IF the 'company' is using a ramped up 'one off' policy breach tacked onto a false, unsupported accusation as a trigger to fire a pilot, then it's a sad indication of a sickness deep within.

Just saying, and I am working with very sketchy details here.

Last edited by Kharon; 7th Aug 2014 at 23:44. Reason: Sometimes – I sits and thinks, sometimes, I just sits. Clarified construct added.
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Old 8th Aug 2014, 00:19
  #1554 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Weltschmerz-By-The-Sea, Queensland, Australia
Posts: 958

That was my point, Kharon: details too sketchy and trying to nut out exactly how Tiger's policies got tangled up in the sole question of enough fuel or not. Reliance on (suspect) process instead of practical results and then vilifying the employee by foul means? Tiger will never get any more than a derisive snort from me.
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Old 8th Aug 2014, 00:49
  #1555 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 548
I have to agree with you on that point Kharon. Fuel policy is only the starting point. A prudent Captain will take a myriad of details and make a decision on how much fuel to load even if that requires full tanks. My personal min fuel for Perth if the weather is good is to take enough to get me to KG. Thats 3.8 as a minimum.
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Old 8th Aug 2014, 01:16
  #1556 (permalink)  
Posts: n/a
Kharon, I'm too lazy to search, but I'm sure you've made that same point with almost those same words before!

I'm not disagreeing, in fact I couldn't agree more, I find it interesting that the same lessons need to come out again.

This is aviation, we need to keep passing on the gen to the next cab off the rank.
Maybe this website is useful
Old 8th Aug 2014, 02:01
  #1557 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Styx Houseboat Park.
Posts: 2,053
Big smile.

bdcer –I know; but if at first you don't succeed; try, try again. This industry is so used to being bullied by the regulator, dominated by the 'administrative' elements and browbeaten by 'management' that fear, confusion levels and an entrenched need, borne of desperation, to 'comply' and please everyone is actually reaching danger levels. There is a dire need to separate 'policy' preference from legal obligations, lest we get confused, duck it up and get fired.

I was aiming at the 'culture' drum, rather than the regulatory one, but they are almost indistinguishable from each other these dark days. The two quotes (and second coffee) set me off. Hopefully we'll get a change of both.

But, don't mind me; just an old work dog trying to yard a stroppy mob; bark, bark, bloody bark, all day long, and no one there to shut the flamin' gate. {thumbs up}.
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Old 8th Aug 2014, 03:37
  #1558 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 548
Its called cultural SOPs. Not spelt out as a requirement but strongly recommended and then debriefed in route checks as being a better way of doing things. The prime example of this is QF1 where idle reverse and flap 25 led to a runway excursion as it is now described. As has been noted the cultural SOPs and the regulatory requirements are hard to distinguish.
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Old 8th Aug 2014, 08:42
  #1559 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Brisvegas
Posts: 3,015
Kharon, a good post. Difficult to disagree. These are the same pressures all captains face every day, of course.

If, indeed in this instance that command prerogative is 'administratively' taken away; then command of the aircraft has been stolen and gifted, by the aircrew, to the clerical department.
That is the point surely. The LAW that gives the PIC authority and responsibility cannot be ignored or overridden by "policy" or culture SOPs. If an individual or company tries to do this then we end up with the situation Tiger had with their grounding.

My feeling is that there is more to this that we do not know (yet). A sacking is never undertaken lightly nowadays.
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Old 11th Aug 2014, 00:38
  #1560 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 2002
Location: In a box
Posts: 297
My IP address is not fixed. In saying that if the company wants to send PPRuNe owners a nice letter from their solicitors and get my or anyone's details, my understanding is that they will hand them over post haste.

Surely as long as what you have posted is true, then ok

Why do OEB's posts keep disappearing???
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