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-   -   Qantas 737 Rear Stairs (https://www.pprune.org/australia-new-zealand-pacific/556691-qantas-737-rear-stairs.html)

partial aviator 17th Feb 2015 13:00

Qantas 737 Rear Stairs
I understand passengers want to get off quickly but the trial of rear stairs at Syd seems crazy to me ...
Just interested in other views .

muffman 17th Feb 2015 13:18

I'm not aware of the trial at all, but I would suggest it has a lot less to do with what the passengers want than what the company want in terms of cutting turnaround time.

c100driver 17th Feb 2015 18:12

Rear stair de-boarding and boarding not new.

Jetstar and Air NZ this is SOP domestically and Internationally at NZQN, NZDN.

Was standard in Honolulu as well.

NSEU 17th Feb 2015 20:04

Is it really that efficient/sensible?

I can't imagine how expensive these custom airstairs units are (including maintenance).
Additional drivers' wages
Who monitors the back doors when the aircraft is loaded and unloaded (door/airstairs clearance)?
Additional groundstaff for directing passengers past the wings (Are most terminal buildings in front of the nose?)
Passengers subjected to noise from the APU.
Passengers deplaning at the rear may slow down catering staff at the rear.
Toilet and water trucks are sometimes the first to get to the aircraft on some aircraft types. Would airstairs prevent easy access? Would the pax be subjected to the smell?

c100driver 17th Feb 2015 21:01

Yes it is.

Manual wheel stairs, no driver required and cost about 20K per set.
One cabin crew in the rear and one in the front.
One extra staff member on the ground and good ground marking is essential.
APU inlet on the other side so no worse than walking out to a TP on the ramp.
Airstair does not impede water or honey cart operation.

It is not a problem and is very efficent.

Like I said it is the normal operation for A320 and B737 in NZ with both Jetstar and Air NZ.

TWT 17th Feb 2015 21:07

VA use rear stairs for 738's at many capital cities in Oz,why not QF ?

Galdom 17th Feb 2015 21:15

Used to do it back in the NAC days in NZ when I was a kid though only for deplaning, definitely nothing new.

morno 17th Feb 2015 21:43

Why not? They're not exactly the first airline in Australia to do it. Makes sense to me.


Typhoon650 17th Feb 2015 22:22

Virgin used to (probably still do) it at Canberra. Pax were off in 5 mins easy.
Probably why 30min turnarounds were possible for them.
Mind you, I've seen a Virgin 737 come in to Canberra late and with big effort by all, turned around in 20 mins or less. Rear stairs definitely helped make it possible.

Southern handler 17th Feb 2015 22:36

Five years ago QF were using rear stairs in CBR for non aerobridge flights. Would sometimes only be a deboard as the ramp cleaners would move stairs onto the next aircraft but worked well and really helped turnarounds

HeSaidWhat 17th Feb 2015 23:38

I have vivid memories of sitting in a cockpit in Shannon watching a Ryan Air 73 loading pax up the forward stairs while exiting pax were still coming down the rear stairs. They achieved 15 min turnarounds and thus great aircraft utilisation.

Transition Layer 17th Feb 2015 23:45

Rear stairs are used by QF on the 737 at all the regional outports too. PHE/KTA/ZNE etc

-438 17th Feb 2015 23:52

QF 737's used to have high utilisation until it was decided to start 2 entirely new operations (Jetstar & Jetconnect).
After losing the majority of the back of the clock Tasman to Jetconnect & much of the red eye flying to Jetstar such as Bali, Jakarta, Darwin, Perth etc. utilisation was down markedly.
Another significant way in which mainline has been undermined in order to make the startups look successful.

Going Boeing 17th Feb 2015 23:52

The main reasons that QF haven't used the rear stairs are: 1. Wet weather issues (in particular, business types who don't want their suits wet), 2. extra staff required on tarmac for OH&S issues and 3. delaying catering access to the rear galley.

LCC's have much smaller catering requirements and thus don't have a problem with pax disembarking through the rear galley.

The push to achieve higher aircraft utilisation might be the driving force behind why they are re-looking at this. Personally, I don't think it's appropriate for a premium carrier to have pax descending/climbing stairs and be subject to the noise and weather issues on the tarmac.

Cynical Pilot 18th Feb 2015 00:25

Short of weather problems Virgin use them everywhere.

onehitwonder 18th Feb 2015 01:35

each set of stairs $15K

morno 18th Feb 2015 02:02

Personally, I don't think it's appropriate for a premium carrier to have pax descending/climbing stairs and be subject to the noise and weather issues on the tarmac
Isn't a problem at places such as:

    If Mr Business is really concerned about getting his suit dirty, then he can still use the aerobridge.


    Mustangbaz 18th Feb 2015 02:59

    Va have always used rear stairs at ports with them (90%) and only use them when it's not raining (can be icy, windy, freezing, but not raining) and as for the J class pax, why would they tramp all the way to the back door? It's used for people aft of the overwing exits

    TBM-Legend 18th Feb 2015 03:26

    I used to love the grand entrance up the staircase on the B727 and DC-9...

    Capn Bloggs 18th Feb 2015 04:24

    Did this at Xmas time. We were allocated the last row, so dutifully used the rear stairs. Quite a few pax came in the wrong door and there was much "passing in the isle" as some went forward and some came to the back. I thought at the time it'd be easier boarding by rows through the front door. At least all the pax are going in the same direction when finding their seat.

    Disembarking is another matter. Definitely quicker with rear stairs as well.

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