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Pitot Covers Brisbane Take 2

Old 22nd Aug 2022, 03:27
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Originally Posted by Lead Balloon View Post
What about old mate whom Motorola says is in the habit of: "scamming the system by carrying around a spare set of covers to fool flight crews with"?
Deliberate circumvention of safety protocols in other industries is typically grounds for immediate dismissal; it's hard to imagine why this would not be the case where hundreds of lives and hundreds of millions of dollars worth of equipment are put at risk.
But the example illustrates nicely why an engineering solution (pitots which are somehow inherently wasp-proof) or elimination (some other way of determining air speed) would be inherently safer than an administrative process requiring fitting and removal of covers, which is open to accidental or deliberate errors.
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Old 23rd Aug 2022, 02:39
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if they saw the need
There is obviously little need beyond the controls already in place, as basically a sock placed over the pitot as required seems to have sufficed for the entirety of aviation history so far.
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Old 23rd Aug 2022, 12:40
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Devil

What if you just leave the pitot heat on during Brisbane turnarounds .
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Old 23rd Aug 2022, 22:23
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In my opinion these continuing pitot cover issues in Brisbane are a symptom of a greater underlying problem that effects aviation everywhere. The tension between safety and commercial success is real, and a finely balanced thing.
The Airlines operating in and out of Brisbane will be informing their crews of the process through notams and intams etc, but how much time pressure are the crews under when reading them? Would they be more likely to remember to check if they signed on 15 minutes earlier? Would the Airline go broke if they signed on 15 minutes earlier?
The Engineer and tug driver who failed to remove them or notice that they were still fitted, did they get a briefing ( in person) about how the system works and a reminder about the Human Factors likely to derail the system? If so is it annual or once, three years ago? Would the Airline/ third party contractor become uncompetitive if they took the time to conduct this training?
Did the Engineer have other aircraft to dispatch at the same time? Had his shift extended out past 12 hours in the recent past with no inbuilt rostering practice to ensure they caught up on sleep/ rest? Would the company be competitive if they ran such a rostering system?
Did the Airport company fail to maintain guidance lights to a gate so that an aircraft was waiting off a bay with engines running for the Engineer to get there and assist? Does the Airport company consider guidance unserviceability as a safety risk or are their staff not aware of downstream operational effects? Would the Airport company go broke if it considered guidance reliability as a safety concern and maintained accordingly?
Is the tug driver considered a professional and in receipt of regular operational briefs and HF training? If they were would the company remain competitive?
In my opinion we could reduce overall incident rates by tinkering with the legal minimum requirements for rostered ‘in person’ briefs and training, minimum staff on the ground per dispatch etc. The operational staff are busy and being Human, a certain percentage of them won’t manage the workload in a safe way.
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Old 23rd Aug 2022, 23:00
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In my opinion we could reduce overall incident rates by tinkering with the legal minimum requirements
Everything you say above is true. However the “incident rate” is already vanishingly small. Thanks mostly to alert crews and ground staff.

This pitot incident beggars belief given previous occurrences. A simple matter to check the covers are on board.
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Old 24th Aug 2022, 00:29
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Originally Posted by Icarus2001 View Post
A simple matter to check the covers are on board.
l haven't operated out of BNE for years, but I suspect the covers being used to mitigate the wasp problem are supplied by the engineers, not from the aircraft. It probably takes too long for an engineer to retrieve the covers from the flight deck on arrival, because of the mob of passengers trying to disembark. The 'simple' solution for that problem would be for the engineers to supply them for the duration of the turn-around, which obviously creates another problem...
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Old 24th Aug 2022, 02:02
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Two minute walk around because they were too busy reading all the tree notams…
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Old 24th Aug 2022, 04:24
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Yip. Two minute walk around because there is not enough time to read all the notams and do a seven minute walk around and depart on time.

However the “incident rate” is already vanishingly small. Thanks mostly to alert crews and ground staff.
I agree but I think it’s pretty obvious that the pilot group and probably the flying public would like to see the small incident rate get smaller. To achieve that I think we should start with your observation about alert crews and ground staff, how could we build on that? I think by ensuring their workload is manageable and that topical hazards are regularly discussed in a formal setting. It would definitely work, but how much would it cost?
This pitot incident beggars belief given previous occurrences. A simple matter to check the covers are on board.
What seems so clearly to be a simple task, is in fact the opposite, impossible. The covers are in a tarmac room or a van or a push back tug.

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Old 24th Aug 2022, 09:10
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As ground engineering are putting them on and off and they're not the set in the cockpit, what about a long bright pink 4mm cord connecting each cover to each other on same side and tied to the tow bar or eng headset or similar? This would probably need to be authorised by the OEM and in the AMM or some other approval.
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Old 24th Aug 2022, 09:38
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https://www.degroffaviation.com/pito...-71f7c826-2fdc
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Old 24th Aug 2022, 15:14
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Did the Airport company fail to maintain guidance lights to a gate so that an aircraft was waiting off a bay with engines running for the Engineer to get there and assist? Does the Airport company consider guidance unserviceability as a safety risk or are their staff not aware of downstream operational effects? Would the Airport company go broke if it considered guidance reliability as a safety concern and maintained accordingly?
The engineer still has to be at the bay whether the NIGS is working or not. Off schedule arrivals probably put more pressure on engineering. Perhaps the practice of airlines outsourcing to the lowest bidder/paying peanuts for engineering services or engineering companies delivering contracted services to multiple airlines with the bare minimum resources possible, thereby expecting or forcing one engineer to be in multiple places at once is more the issue.
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Old 24th Aug 2022, 23:37
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Originally Posted by Traffic_Is_Er_Was View Post
The engineer still has to be at the bay whether the NIGS is working or not. Off schedule arrivals probably put more pressure on engineering. Perhaps the practice of airlines outsourcing to the lowest bidder/paying peanuts for engineering services or engineering companies delivering contracted services to multiple airlines with the bare minimum resources possible, thereby expecting or forcing one engineer to be in multiple places at once is more the issue.
Sounds just like the aged ‘care’ sector…
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Old 25th Aug 2022, 01:21
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Originally Posted by Lead Balloon View Post
Sounds just like the aged ‘care’ sector…
That's exactly what it's like. Resources are stretched thin, with a single engineer often responsible for the dispatch of multiple aircraft. It's little wonder that people sometimes cut corners to get things done (and avoid a bollocking from above) and occasionally something gets missed.
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Old 25th Aug 2022, 01:29
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And where is the so-called ‘safety’ regulator in all this?
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Old 25th Aug 2022, 02:00
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I was reliably informed (pre Covid) that two operators that use BNE quite regularly use their own engineers (not contractors) to install/remove said pitot covers. Once the covers are installed, a maintenance entry is made in the aircraft logbook and when the covers are removed the log entry is cleared and Captain informed. If the log entry is not cleared the aircraft DOES NOT MOVE.

Rgds McHale.
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Old 25th Aug 2022, 02:08
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Originally Posted by Capt Quentin McHale View Post
I was reliably informed (pre Covid) that two operators that use BNE quite regularly use their own engineers (not contractors) to install/remove said pitot covers. Once the covers are installed, a maintenance entry is made in the aircraft logbook and when the covers are removed the log entry is cleared and Captain informed. If the log entry is not cleared the aircraft DOES NOT MOVE.

Rgds McHale.
That is certainly the case at Virgin mate.
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Old 25th Aug 2022, 02:14
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Originally Posted by Lead Balloon View Post
And where is the so-called ‘safety’ regulator in all this?
Good question.
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Old 25th Aug 2022, 02:38
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Originally Posted by McHale
I was reliably informed (pre Covid) that two operators that use BNE quite regularly use their own engineers (not contractors) to install/remove said pitot covers. Once the covers are installed, a maintenance entry is made in the aircraft logbook and when the covers are removed the log entry is cleared and Captain informed. If the log entry is not cleared the aircraft DOES NOT MOVE.
Precisely the procedure used in this case. Read the report.
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Old 25th Aug 2022, 03:30
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Originally Posted by Capn Bloggs View Post
Precisely the procedure used in this case. Read the report.
Yep, the relevant paragraph of the Preliminary Report states (my emphasis):

At 0904 the LAME re-entered the flight deck, certified for the transit check in the technical log, cleared the technical log entry for the fitment of the pitot covers, and removed the pitot cover warning placard from the flight deck pedestal. The LAME then returned to the tarmac and placed the placard on the dash in their work vehicle. The LAME stated that they had not verified that the pitot covers were removed, or requested that the AME remove the pitot covers, but assumed that they would have been removed by that time.
It seems fairly clear that engineers, presumably under pressure to dispatch aircraft on time, are cutting corners when it comes to certifying the pitot covers have been removed.
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Old 25th Aug 2022, 03:37
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And in the interests of crystal clarity, the engineers involved were not employees of the airline concerned. Capt McHale's post covered two issues: The who and the what.
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