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Rules is rules! Jobsworth at Stansted

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Rules is rules! Jobsworth at Stansted

Old 6th Sep 2007, 20:05
  #21 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: UK
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We had 2 Comp A's whilst in the RAF, wife and I both lost our fathers during a tour in the US, with both trips on BA. They seemed to know the circumstances, and we were upgraded on one of the trips.

The Comp Cell were beyond reproach, advising us of the quickest route available and asking whether we wanted anything different. Met at London by cab and whisked to Norwich and Luton respectively, in time on both occasions I hasten to add.
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Old 6th Sep 2007, 20:13
  #22 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 2005
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MPA a while ago. Matelot on board black tube like thing declared as Comp A (although not informed until 20 minutes prior to pick up). Craft makes way towards FI and surfaces to Sea King above (Matelot informed 10 minutes before surfacing to pack bag as NOK is VSI). Winched onto Sea King which makes 90 min transit to MPA. Lands 100 M in front of 747 that has been delayed by 2 hours, is offloaded, handed ticket by mover and walked up steps to business class seat where he is briefed what will happen at Asi. At Asi, is marched down steps by mover and up steps to freighter Tristar that has delayed by X? hours at Asi that has engines running and heads straight for ISK or Lossie (cannot remember) to offload pax into MT to drive to hospital. I reckon he was on the ground for less than 5 minutes from being told that there was a problem to arriving and getting in car for dash to hospital.
One of the great redeeming features of serving is that I know that if it all goes pear shaped everyone involved will do their absolute best to get me home as fast as is possible.

Last edited by Hoobie Schnaps; 6th Sep 2007 at 20:15. Reason: Inability to rit propr like what they dus.
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Old 6th Sep 2007, 20:18
  #23 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
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if it all goes pear shaped everyone involved will do their absolute best
...apart from Stansted Airport.

Are they alone in this policy?

I think we should be told.
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Old 6th Sep 2007, 23:41
  #24 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Over the sea and far away
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Stansted ATC and the airport authorities knew about the arrival 12 hours earlier as it was a commercial flight from Cyprus. Fortunately very few Comp A's come up against this jobsworth attitude.
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Old 7th Sep 2007, 10:50
  #25 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: UK
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No Defence but they were good to me...

Guys let us not slate Stansted too heavily for actions of one controller.
A few years ago They opened at 4:30am on Boxing Day for fuel on my return from a medevac (4pm departure from Wattashame - Regent's Park to collect specialist baby team - Cardiff with many hours and cups of tea spent at the ambulance station next to the Millenium Stadium - to return via London).
Stansted were great - immediate recognition of the Rescue callsign with fuel and biscuits forthcoming! Thank you chaps.
Interestingly Heathrow were reticent to allow us to transit through an empty zone direct track from the north west to Regent's Park until we asked if they would explain the delay to the very sick babies parents who were listening to the radios on board.
Hey ho, some people might not understand, so just explain and it's amazing what can happen.
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Old 7th Sep 2007, 11:04
  #26 (permalink)  
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Guys let us not slate Stansted too heavily for actions of one controller.
Guys what bit of "it is not the controllers airfield" do you fail to understand. I have handled many casevac flights here in NI . There has been no delay to ANY of them .The sky opens they go direct. IF however someone in BAA decides that THEIR airfield is unavailable then there is naff all an ATCO can do.
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Old 7th Sep 2007, 15:25
  #27 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2005
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Its good to hear that with all the cutbacks that happened to the Forces in the last few years that the way the services look after Comp A cases has not changed.
In the middle 80s whilst on deployment with 1(F) in Denmark we had a comp A and there was no hesitation in ferrying an SAC back to Wittering in a 2 seater Harrier
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Old 7th Sep 2007, 16:41
  #28 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2007
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My only tale to tell is as part of the 33 team that generated a cab out of thin air to go and fetch a family for a vsi snco from somewhere in the westcountry. Harry Staish spoke to the boss, boss walks into the line and says I need a cab and a crew RTFN. Volunteers.......

Fastest, most professional and hugely teamworked generation of aircraft and half a sqn volunteering to fly it. It was friday afternoon as well
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Old 8th Sep 2007, 01:42
  #29 (permalink)  
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Ironically the aircraft was vectored right over Stansted's in use threshold after it had departed its alternate pick up point, thus making something of a mockery of their intransigence in the first place...
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Old 8th Sep 2007, 04:09
  #30 (permalink)  
Below the Glidepath - not correcting
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You might want to see what the self-appointed guardians of the peace are up to in trying to get Stansted's much-needed second runway shut down before it starts, as well as polishing their halos about the airport in general before you have a pop at the ATCO. These are professional timewasters trying to close down an entire airport. Feel free to write to them;


From the BAA Website;

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Old 8th Sep 2007, 08:24
  #31 (permalink)  
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I always said that BAA (and CAA) should have been on Maggies hit-list

Hear hear!!! The jobsworth load of tosser!!!!
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Old 8th Sep 2007, 11:31
  #32 (permalink)  
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I was a bit naughty once. I was carrying a girl in the back of a Puma, who had sufferred bad spinal and neck injuries. She had been put in a turning frame in a bid to keep her level at all times. We had to route through the London helilanes to get to the hospital at the Isle of Dogs. The controller said we must follow the Thames (as is normal), when we started taking the first bends in the river, it was clear that despite being in a turning frame the girl was sufferring imense pain, her doc was concerned. I informed the controller of the exact situation and the condition of the young girl, requesting special permission to fly direct lines accross the bends of the Thames. He came back and said no! because of noise abatement (1330 hrs!), I told him the girl was in severe pain and that her condition could even worsen. He still said no! I then told him I was going to do it anyway, if he didn't like it report me, If anyone complains of the noise, send the complaint to my boss, and if he didn't give me a service, I would squawk emergency, over central London. I flew in a straight line, got the service, no complaints to the boss and two years later, the girl was up and about and back to normal.
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Old 8th Sep 2007, 12:07
  #33 (permalink)  
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Mr Point (what an inappropriate name as in this case, you make no valid point) and others.

Instead of ranting on about what is undoubtedly a p**s poor show by someone at Stansted, why don't you get your facts correct and aim your frustrations at the correct miscreant instead of shooting from the hip and getting the wrong person.

You have had replies on here from people who are in the know about how things happen - i.e. ATCOs, (not including chris kebab, as reading his first post, he does not seem to understand civil ATC operations).

ATCOs at Stansted etc are there to provide a service - they do so within the rules laid down by the operating authority i.e. BAA in this instance. If an A/C wishes to arrive outside normal operating hours, permission MUST always be received from the Airfield Operating Authorities beforehand.

This FACT Mr Point, includes scheduled commercial A/C that for whatever reason are running late. There have been many passenger A/C diverted from destination because they could not land before the end of operating hours.

As someone rightly mentioned earlier, most civvies with no military background would not understand what a Comp A flight was. In the scheme of things and with regards to flight priority, a Comp A flight has no special status. Thats the black and white answer, though if it was made clear at the time what the implication was, most ATCOs (not including the complete to**er that Tigs2 has just written about), would move heaven and earth to get the flight in.... however, they cannot do this if:

a) they do not know the flight is Comp A (and they do not understand what it means)
b) the airport operating authority does not allow dispensation for the A/C to land.

So to the facts of the example from the thread - were ATC informed it was a Comp A flight and was it explained what this meant?

Unless an A/C is in an emergency, it is very difficult to get an out of hours landing nowadays, mainly because of the left wing NIMBYs. This is particularly relevant at Stansted with all the protests regarding expansion. The operating authorities i.e. the owners are not going to do anything that is going to further alienate them from th elocals.

The best way to prevent a repeat of this farce, is to have a set procedure for notification and handling of Comp A flights that require the use of civilian airfields. Only then will they get the treatment and handling they deserve
anotherthing is online now  
Old 8th Sep 2007, 12:27
  #34 (permalink)  
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It sounds like Comp A might be an unkown thing in Civ ATC land, which surprises me somewhat. Maybe the next time the civ and mil ATC worlds get together it might be worth making all aware of what Comp A is and formalising the whole thing?

Last edited by Green Flash; 8th Sep 2007 at 12:29. Reason: Didn't read fully the previous post - but agree with it.
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Old 8th Sep 2007, 12:52
  #35 (permalink)  
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It sounds like Comp A might be an unkown thing in Civ ATC land, which surprises me somewhat

With the exception of Atco's like me (Aldergrove since 1986),and ex service Atco's civilian ATC will have no idea what you are talking about.
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Old 8th Sep 2007, 12:56
  #36 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2006
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"Comp A", in the absence of other information, would sound like a bigwig getting special treatment to me.

Only it isn't.

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Old 8th Sep 2007, 17:52
  #37 (permalink)  
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I have 33 years of providing ATC at military and civil airfields and I've never heard of 'Comp A' status; I HAVE heard of Cat A priority flights, as have ALL other civilian controllers. If the people who handle bookings were made aware of this, things might go a little smoother when a military flight requests priority handing at a civil airfield.
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Old 8th Sep 2007, 19:14
  #38 (permalink)  
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Communications, communications, communications, as someone might have said. Oh well, maybe this thread might alert all concerned. Worth cross posting in the ATC forum? Presumably there must be a reverse arrangement ie medic/rozzer cabs cleared straight through MATZ's, or whatever?
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Old 8th Sep 2007, 21:13
  #39 (permalink)  
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Definitely worth posting in ATC. I'd also suggest a formal letter to all ATSUs, given the current mil situation.
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Old 8th Sep 2007, 23:35
  #40 (permalink)  

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Just to add another civvie atco here that wouldn't have been aware of what Comp A meant either if used on the r/t.

Definitely worth trying to get something put out about it.
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