Fragrant Harbour A forum for the large number of pilots (expats and locals) based with the various airlines in Hong Kong. Air Traffic Controllers are also warmly welcomed into the forum.

Breaking Point

Old 11th Jan 2012, 07:19
  #1 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Brexitland
Posts: 1,122
Breaking Point

Are we near to breaking point with crewing levels? It would certainly seem to be a crisis at the very least with lots of flights either not crewed until the last minute or with a crew compliment such as 2 or even 3 Captains shoehorned in pretty late.
Just a glitch or a we nearing 'the crunch'? Perhaps if we stop answering the phone and 'helping out' on G Days, not acknowledging outstanding crew notifications and all other methods by which we allow CX the 'get out of jail free' card, we will see.
Arfur Dent is offline  
Old 11th Jan 2012, 07:31
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Join Date: May 2003
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One FO working his leave on LA flight tonight screwing other people


Last edited by turnandburn; 11th Jan 2012 at 07:58.
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Old 11th Jan 2012, 09:36
  #3 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Planet Earth
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Not using CrewDirect only forces them to employ more crew controllers to talk on the phone...doesn't really affect things in other ways. Working G days however shouldn't be done! Too many people doing it to further their own agenda and thereby helping the company.
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Old 11th Jan 2012, 12:10
  #4 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 2003
Location: 'round here
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Wanted to swap first day of leave to get an extra week off at the end. Was told no way could leave be swapped, sold or changed so I find that hard to believe.
stillalbatross is offline  
Old 11th Jan 2012, 12:14
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Join Date: Apr 2002
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You can avail yourself for a particular duty during leave, which perhaps someone has done to help them travel for a vacation? If so I wouldn't have a problem with that; it's a recidivist G day workers that are $screwing people, not the occasional guy working to get from A to B on holiday. Personally I'd rather be down the back drinking, but hey; to each his own.
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Old 11th Jan 2012, 12:17
  #6 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: HK
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Of course people work leave.

There's one particularly muscular "North American" lives on a boat who flew half way round the world ON LEAVE to help this circus out.

What does that say.

Yes, he's a trainer.
larrikan larry is offline  
Old 11th Jan 2012, 12:39
  #7 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2000
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Leave has been used plenty of times to get CX out of a jam.
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Old 11th Jan 2012, 13:28
  #8 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 228
Breaking point of what?





Cabin Crew?


IFE/seats etc?

jonathon68 is offline  
Old 11th Jan 2012, 14:57
  #9 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 2008
Location: All Over
Posts: 486
Don't know what the breaking point is....not like we are fighting a war.

We ARE undermanned; at least it seems so and CC seems to me to operate constantly in crisis management mode. I wouldn't want their job--I don't solve puzzles well. When someone falls out for WHATEVER reason there is a scramble and we are spread so thin this ripples throughout the roster. This seems to be a new normal of operation and lotsa folks making money in overtime. In time manning levels will hopefully catch up.

I neither endorse nor oppose someone working on G days. This won't have a long term effect but might mask a short term problem in manning. If you feel you should answer the phone, do. If you feel you shouldn't, don't. Eventually overtime costs and FTLs will kick in.

If there is a downturn in China things might abate but this is not going to happen. The U.S. economy is and will be buggered by those who cannot leave things alone (and those who got there PHD's in economics from a cracker jack box and never heard of Milton Friedman or Adam Smith) but it will take a while before the effects of this are felt in Asia. Many people traveling; just no one is paying for anything.

The tricky portion for us is we face constantly shifting schedules and need to plan for more likely short range callouts which makes life more difficult.
Shep69 is offline  
Old 11th Jan 2012, 15:59
  #10 (permalink)  
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Location: Brexitland
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Funny, there always seems to be a 'Jonathan' who is deliberately obtuse. Obviously, I am referring to a breaking point regarding crewing levels (as I actually said anyway). No idea of the manning levels in Engineering or most of the remainder of your list as the thread is not about those topics.
No, we're not 'at war' but there seem to be a lot of stories going around about panic crewing. Trying to get a bigger picture view - that's all.
RTFQ please
Arfur Dent is offline  
Old 11th Jan 2012, 16:14
  #11 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 2008
Location: All Over
Posts: 486
Bigger picture view is we will continue to have short range crisis management until we get more folks which will happen in time. Our part in this is be prepared for changes to the rosters and deal with it in the way we deem best.
Shep69 is offline  
Old 12th Jan 2012, 00:13
  #12 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: UK
Posts: 53
Every time someone works a G day or clicks on an "Outstanding Notification", they induce further roster instability. The only way to fix the problem is to allow the wheels to fall off and some flights to go un-crewed.

I'm not being militant, just stating a fact. My roster is a joke and the leave plot a shambles. I'm supposed to be working for a legacy carrier, yet most of us don't have any leave allocated at all. We've brought all this on ourselves and we're too stupid or selfish to realize it.

Stop working G days, stop allowing them to manipulate your roster by accepting online changes and let the problem work its way through naturally. They either need to get more pilots or less jets. Simple.

And a final thought for G day workers. If you answer the call to operate a midnight departure, are you really prepared for that flight and well rested? The other 3 guys have planned their rest accordingly. What about you?
Sir KDM Lowe is offline  
Old 12th Jan 2012, 02:37
  #13 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: hong kong
Posts: 234
And what exactly have you actually done or propose to do other than have a go at others? Put up or shut up.
AnAmusedReader is offline  
Old 12th Jan 2012, 02:52
  #14 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 1,133
Saturn, feel free to put your name up for GC election. I'll vote for you so that we can see what you can achieve...oops sorry this I PPRuNe where you are only words and no action.
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Old 12th Jan 2012, 05:45
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Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Cupboard
Posts: 264
I thought we paid for an association with elected volunteers to represent us, but every time someone complains about the AOA and/or the performance of the GC, they are told to get themselves elected. This, of course, makes no sense.

Criticism of the association's performance, waste of funds, ineffective yet expensive personnel, years-long battles with no end in sight and/or no prioritization, and the ongoing lack of significant results is just that. It comes with the territory, particularly when it is accurate and justified. People are allowed to express their opinions on pilot rumour forums.

Every time someone complains about a judge or minister or president, does that mean the complainer has no right to speak unless he is actively attempting to replace that person?

Last edited by Iron Skillet; 14th Jan 2012 at 02:05.
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Old 12th Jan 2012, 05:55
  #16 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Hong K ong
Posts: 233
Yes & No

Firstly not all of us have Time or the skills to be in the GC or more importantly the driving seat of the AoA (President etc)

2nd - I really don't think us pilots here in HK make good GC members as we always jet lagged etc..

3rd As a Pilot & GC member if you show your true (Full) integrity how far will your career go!

4th We do pay sub's and most are willing to double or triple them if it means we can employ a heap of guys whom can achieve things. (Not that the current guys are not, but a hell of a lot more can be done) Sub's are too low and performance too low.

5th Most pilots with the right com's medium can be very very helpfull at providing input towards progress..

Start by getting a bullet proof 5th Generation Private forum where posts can the graded and identities hidden.

Got to run..

crewsunite is offline  
Old 12th Jan 2012, 14:21
  #17 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 228
Trying to get a bigger picture view - that's all.
OK, Arfur Dent. Open your eyes and get a bigger picture.

Shortage of pilots is obvious, with some categories far worse off than others. I deal with my workload, complain to my boss, fill out the F-ASR and email my Union. I don't waste too much time complaining on PPRuNe, unless I have time to spare in an outport.

But the big picture, which many of us pilots seem to be totally unaware of is that many other categories of employees are also being stretched to what we feel is the limit. Resources such as spare parts are also running short etc.

If you talk to your colleagues beyond the flight deck, you will discover that they have the same issues. Counter staff at the airport, cabin crew, engineers, mechanics, crew control and even managers etc. If you cruise past the 3rd floor these days you will observe a ghost town. They are all busy trying to plug the gaps.

This is not isolated to airlines such as CX. Other airlines in the "hood" have similar issues. It also sounds as if ATC are also similarly "challenged".

The current spin is that we are deliberately undermanned for the downturn. What f#cking downturn? I think that the chinless, fence-sitting, penny-pinching, paper shuffling, shiny-pole climbers have just totally failed to prepare for the expansion. Again.

My key issue in life is not fatigue. It is my anger with Management incompetence at putting all of us in this situation again.
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Old 12th Jan 2012, 19:05
  #18 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Brexitland
Posts: 1,122
Good points - well made Jonathan. Thank you from us all. We didn't know any of that but, I say again, RTFQ.
Arfur Dent is offline  
Old 13th Jan 2012, 07:25
  #19 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Asia
Posts: 335
Missed opportunities

...and while we wait for the down turn, our competition ramps it up and gains market share.

We are not starting Newark service as planned either, short crew there too ?

Five Green is offline  
Old 13th Jan 2012, 09:07
  #20 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 2004
Location: 3.5 from TD
Posts: 1,004
We are not starting Newark service as planned either, short crew there too ?
Can't be the loads, NY is ALWAYS full. Continent-ed is always full on the EWR flights as well, and they are the only ones on the route. Anything is better than their service. I'll take an Indian lo-co airline before buying a ticket in Scab-tinental.

The fact that there is a massive number of crew with no leave for 2012 is a pretty good hint. They are even taking away 1 week slots that were already allocated 6mo to a 1 year in advance! What is a week, it is nothing.

If we had crew with their eye on winning the chess game instead of being hell-bent in making a single piece move we could really put the squeeze on and get some things done.
Sqwak7700 is offline  

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