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

ATC, RFF, WTF?

Old 20th Nov 2022, 23:47
  #1 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Elsewhere
Posts: 551
Likes: 0
Received 5 Likes on 1 Post
ATC, RFF, WTF?

So, for a while now we’ve had constant ATIS updates every time one of the fireys goes for a leak and the RFF cat changes. Or we’ll be advised on short final that RFF is now Cat zero due to them attending an emergency somewhere on the airfield. What are we supposed to do with this information - go around and divert? Try even harder not to crash?

Then yesterday we had ATC asking each aircraft inbound to YSSY, one after the other, if they had the NOTAM advising RFF would be Cat 9. (You could just picture the bafflement on the flight deck of the United 787…). Again, of what practical use was this? If you work on the principle that unnecessary transmissions cluttering up the airwaves aren’t a good thing, then surely this isn’t a great idea. Plus, we don’t seem to get this if there’s a NOTAM advising that the threshold’s displaced 1000m or the HIALS are u/s,

I’m not questioning the professionalism of ATC here, as I’m sure they’re just doing what’s required of them. Just trying to understand where this is coming from, as it seems to be a fairly new thing and not particularly helpful to anyone. Perhaps a rethink might be in order.

itsnotthatbloodyhard is offline  
Old 21st Nov 2022, 00:45
  #2 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Australia/India
Posts: 4,665
Received 24 Likes on 16 Posts
It's so you'll try extra hard not to collide with the 97' AMSL tree that penetrates the VSS 2kms away from the ARP.
Lead Balloon is offline  
Old 21st Nov 2022, 01:43
  #3 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Cab of a Freight Train
Age: 39
Posts: 1,021
Received 6 Likes on 4 Posts
Perhaps one of the more crusty skippers needs to reply with your question: "Yeah, thanks Center, but what do you actually expect me to do with that info?"

Begs the question, if you are out of options for suitable diversions and the RFF cat is below legislated requirements, do you declare MAYDAY [RFF] or hold hoping it comes back up until you declare MAYDAY Fuel? Otherwise you're breaking "the roolz" and you can't break the rules unless an emergency exists, right?
KRviator is offline  
Old 21st Nov 2022, 04:13
  #4 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Brisvegas
Posts: 3,594
Likes: 0
Received 28 Likes on 21 Posts
Given that in Australia we have 100+ seat jets operating RPT into uncontrolled airports, with ZERO fire fighting or emergency response available, what is the purpose of the broadcast?

Perhaps it was picked up at an ICAO audit.

*RPT as in transport category operations, part 121
Icarus2001 is offline  
Old 21st Nov 2022, 05:07
  #5 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Somewhere
Posts: 2,898
Likes: 0
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
It means that some bureaucrat safely camped behind his desk in Canberra can't be blamed if a 1/1 000 000 event occurs because ATC told you that RFF was degraded. That is why there are 1000's of irrelevant NOTAMs. That is why we have all these "rules" under the guise of safety. It's nothing about safety it's about protecting the bureaucracy and blaming pilots.
neville_nobody is offline  
Old 21st Nov 2022, 07:49
  #6 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Australia
Posts: 1,142
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by itsnotthatbloodyhard View Post
What are we supposed to do with this information -
Stating the obvious: ask your company, what if anything you are required to do ......
CaptainMidnight is offline  
Old 21st Nov 2022, 08:12
  #7 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Australia
Age: 56
Posts: 2,137
Likes: 0
Received 8 Likes on 4 Posts
Conduct a missed approach, enter a holding pattern and each crew member put on an approved safety vest, prior to joining a 20 mile final.
Stationair8 is offline  
Old 21st Nov 2022, 08:27
  #8 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Australia
Posts: 276
Likes: 0
Received 2 Likes on 1 Post
Originally Posted by Stationair8 View Post
Conduct a missed approach, enter a holding pattern and each crew member put on an approved safety vest, prior to joining a 20 mile final.
With ASIC clearly displayed on the outer garment...
illusion is offline  
Old 21st Nov 2022, 08:36
  #9 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: The World
Posts: 1,940
Received 36 Likes on 23 Posts
This is a systemic problem that pervades the distribution of essential flight info. This article nails it:

The Problem Of Bulls**t Notams
dr dre is offline  
Old 21st Nov 2022, 08:55
  #10 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Australia/India
Posts: 4,665
Received 24 Likes on 16 Posts
Originally Posted by CaptainMidnight View Post
Stating the obvious: ask your company, what if anything you are required to do ......
Is it really possible that different operators of transport category aircraft could have different Ops Manual answers as to the required response to the same RFF NOTAM for the same destination, all of which differing responses comply with regulatory requirements? Do some operators carry their own on-board RFFS at the required category as mitigation?
Lead Balloon is offline  
Old 21st Nov 2022, 09:12
  #11 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: sincity
Posts: 1,144
Received 3 Likes on 1 Post
Originally Posted by Stationair8 View Post
Conduct a missed approach, enter a holding pattern and each crew member put on an approved safety vest, prior to joining a 20 mile final.
Only a 20nm final? Been to BNE lately?

Can't be too safe
maggot is offline  
Old 21st Nov 2022, 09:45
  #12 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: 500 miles from Chaikhosi, Yogistan
Posts: 4,128
Received 13 Likes on 7 Posts
Off the top of my head the only RFFS in the operational regs is regarding EDTO alternates when outside the Australian FIR they must be cat 4. Inside Aus there is no requirement. This was going to change in December 21 with the 121 introduction but has been bumped to Dec 23 when domestic EDTO alternates need to be Cat 4 139 compliant.
compressor stall is offline  
Old 21st Nov 2022, 22:04
  #13 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Australia
Posts: 473
Received 2 Likes on 1 Post
First reg reference
MOS 139H 3.1.3.2 If advertised in ERSA, NOTAM action must be taken for any reduction below specified ARFFS category.....

Second reg reference

MOS 139H 25.1.3.2 NOTAM action is not necessary for temporary reductions in ARFFS provisions, provided that the type of aircraft movement planned for the aerodrome during the temporary reduction does not exceed the reduced category. In these circumstances ARFFS is to advise ATC of the details of the reduction by direct recorded line.

Result: Any reduction in category, when scheduled aircraft movement require a higher category, must be promulgated somehow. I have asked what the expected outcome is, and what actions are expected of the crew for this information (as others have in this thread). All I got was "we must comply with the reg".

Lead Balloon - this is the same situation for the VSS notams. Penetrations of the VSS shall be promulgated

CASA are telling their staff they can exercise discretion......it appears their staff don't want to
Alpha

alphacentauri is offline  
Old 21st Nov 2022, 22:59
  #14 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Australia/India
Posts: 4,665
Received 24 Likes on 16 Posts
And thus it’s promulgated. But what does the crew do differently, in the real world, as a consequence of what’s promulgated?
Lead Balloon is offline  
Old 21st Nov 2022, 23:22
  #15 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Australia
Posts: 473
Received 2 Likes on 1 Post
Absolutely nothing.

I would point out that there are some (Airservices and CASA) that genuinely believe that an operational decision is made based on the changed ARFF information. Is there decisions made at the dispatch stage based on an ARFF change?

Same for the VSS penetrations....do performance engineers need to know this information? How else do they get it?

Alpha
alphacentauri is offline  
Old 22nd Nov 2022, 00:01
  #16 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Aus
Posts: 2,091
Likes: 0
Received 30 Likes on 18 Posts
Sounds more like a planning requirement, and in-flight up to the operators what to do. It would be more so an issue of whether you push back for departure without said RFF capability than whether you continue an approach. Maybe a crew could then assess they may not have full RFF accessibility may mean you evacuate earlier in certain circumstances rather than rely on fire services being able to extinguish the fire. After all if you land away from intended destination whilst on fire you take what external help you can, but you would most likely get everyone off ASAP rather than wait for help to arrive.

What if two A380s collide on taxi and catch fire, then that obviously exceeds the RFF capability. (I sincerely hope I just didn't make one of those airport risk assessors head explode with worry now)
43Inches is offline  
Old 22nd Nov 2022, 00:57
  #17 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 541
Received 2 Likes on 1 Post
I put this in the same category as the now seemingly never ending barrage of UA ops / RPAS notams at major airports. The ones that are commercially licenced and having to post these notams are not the ones we are worried about.
kingRB is offline  
Old 22nd Nov 2022, 01:35
  #18 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Brisbane
Posts: 67
Likes: 0
Received 2 Likes on 1 Post
So the ARFF are in dispute with their employer over not providing enough resources for them to do their jobs, so apart from a strike in December, what better way to document how many times safety is reduced by the number of NOTAMS lowering the Cat level. The average pilot will not know or care how many Fire Fighters are on the shift, but if you push this into their faces, then it all becomes a slightly larger issue for the Employer to defend. If you accept a reduction in your operational workforce due to COVID, you had better have a way to get it back up to speed BEFORE the need arises for the very same people to be trained and operational. Don't ignore it because you are concentrating on how much money you saved!
Alpha Whiskey Bravo is offline  
Old 23rd Nov 2022, 08:29
  #19 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Around
Posts: 76
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by kingRB View Post
I put this in the same category as the now seemingly never ending barrage of UA ops / RPAS notams.
If I ever find myself at 262 ft agl 3.6 NM from the ARP I’m not going to be thinking about UA ops.

Likewise, if I have a problem and need to land very soon at the closest major airport, the availability of RFF services isn’t going to stop me.
Hamley is offline  
Old 24th Nov 2022, 04:42
  #20 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 132
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by 43Inches View Post
Sounds more like a planning requirement, and in-flight up to the operators what to do. It would be more so an issue of whether you push back for departure without said RFF capability than whether you continue an approach. Maybe a crew could then assess they may not have full RFF accessibility may mean you evacuate earlier in certain circumstances rather than rely on fire services being able to extinguish the fire. After all if you land away from intended destination whilst on fire you take what external help you can, but you would most likely get everyone off ASAP rather than wait for help to arrive.

What if two A380s collide on taxi and catch fire, then that obviously exceeds the RFF capability. (I sincerely hope I just didn't make one of those airport risk assessors head explode with worry now)
Or when an Airbus takes out a fire truck, thus instantly reducing the RFF category available to deal with itself!
parishiltons is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell or Share My Personal Information

Copyright © 2023 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.