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What's New In W. Africa (Nigeria)

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What's New In W. Africa (Nigeria)

Old 28th Sep 2006, 18:37
  #1181 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: West africa
Posts: 18
Almost "fresh fish"

Tokubo.
I feel that I must take issue with some of the points that you raise. I can't accept that PH should be classed as a "crowded environment". Early impressions are that it would be classed as busy rather than crowded when compared to such areas as Greater London or New York. We don't have to contend with a large number of virtually uncontrolled light aircraft for instance. Although there are undoubtedly problems arising from the somewhat erratic ATC system it would seem to me that the greatest hazard that we face is the indiscipline (particularly radio) and the poor airmanship of our own pilots. The practice of "listening out" before transmitting would appear to be a lost art, similarly, the recognition of one's own callsign would seem to have gone the same way. This leads to a large, unneccessary increase in radio traffic.
I have also noticed that the age of the aircraft flown and the standard of the GPS installed makes very little difference to the spacial awareness of pilots. While the 212 is an old aircraft, I have noticed that they seem to be flying at the right heights to the right reporting points. Maybe it's that they have more time to think about it all!
The problems of Bristow seem to be entirely of their own making, although a (small) number of pilots are crossing the road to CHC, the majority of those going are leaving Nigeria altogether. It seems that the risks for some outweigh the attractions of both Bristow and CHC. Also, although the traffic is one-way at the moment, I understand that the direction would be largely reversed should Bristow elect to go to six and six. (Watch this space)
As for CHC, they appear to be in a much stronger position with recruitment at the moment. I do wonder though, with the influx of new pilots, do they have the training infrastructure to cope? Particularly for line-training.
The solution to most of the problems that we encounter in PH as pilots are within our own hands to solve. If we all looked a little more at our own personal performance, airmanship and discipline we would find that we all had a safer environment in which to operate. I do agree with you about TCAS though, criminal in this day and age not to have it!
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Old 29th Sep 2006, 01:05
  #1182 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Nigeria
Age: 53
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I congratulate you on your first post.
How often have I cringed as I hear pilots stepping on each other, particularly when it is obvious that ATC has not heard the first message. 'Switch, listen, talk' basic CDF.

I agree that the greater London area is probably more crowded than people realise, but still heartily advocate TCAS for the Delta. (Hey, I may even have exposed myself in that quest!)
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Old 29th Sep 2006, 11:32
  #1183 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Dubai
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TCAS would be great if the 'Fuzzy MEL' didn't rule in Nigeria, I would imagine that with the continual difficulty of getting spares into Nigeria will render it very difficult to ensure that no-one could depart base with an inop TXPDR. I also suspect that the spares issue is even more acute now that the previously normal 'Expedite' process cannot be used in Nigeria for fear of offending the squeaky clean 'Post Enron' crowd.

Another point is when will someone look at the East Shetland Basin structure as an example for route structures in the PH zone. Seperating the inbounds and outbounds vertically as well as horizontally may be an option to consider. I am sure there are lots of sensible GoM examples as well.

As a matter of interest, is there a different TCAS RA alogrithm for helicopters as against FW?

Regs to all the suvivors.
TOD
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Old 29th Sep 2006, 11:38
  #1184 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Nigeria
Age: 53
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TOD,
as of now helicopters only have TCAS 1 and so have TAs only, not RAs. However, a certain well known UK based operator we are both acquainted with will shortly be offering TCAS2 to the market. I'm not sure whether the algorithms are changed, I'll ask next week.
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Old 29th Sep 2006, 21:56
  #1185 (permalink)  
cpt
 
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TCAS 1 is for sure a good asset for traffic avoidance providing we bear in mind its limitationd and purpose....basically it helps to spot a conflicting traffic. It's therefore not the absolute answer and even could become dangerous if we believe this. As for the TCAS2 I think one of the difficulties is the autopilot coupling and difference in performances with TCAS 2 equiped fixed wings.
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Old 30th Sep 2006, 20:22
  #1186 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Afrika sometimes
Age: 64
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Thumbs down Bristow 412 Accident

I heard that a Bristow Bell 412 had a meeting with the "Tommy Craighead" yesterday . Unsurprisingly, the TC won and the Bristow machine now has a newly modified small diameter main rotor system.
Thankfully the pilot and all passengers were unhurt and landed on another rog close by
Bristow do not seem to be having a good time in Nigeria at present and are becoming a shadow of the company started by the man whose name they bear

Last edited by TomBola; 30th Sep 2006 at 20:26. Reason: grammar
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Old 30th Sep 2006, 21:09
  #1187 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: here and there
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TomBola,
Are you saying that a 412 had a close encounter with what I gather is the structure of a rig (TC) and THEREAFTER continued (with a newly modified small diameter main rotor system) to proceed and land on another rig nearby? WOW! Maybe I'm misreading your story?
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Old 1st Oct 2006, 18:37
  #1188 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Lagos
Posts: 245
Bristow 412 Accident

I heard it hit one of the legs, then managed to get down on the deck of a semi-sub alongside with a lower deck. Luckily the (single) pilot and pax were all okay. The other rig has no crane, so they're having to get a small crane barge out to lift the 412 onto a barge for transport back to shore.
The main thing is that all those on board are unhurt.
I hear that a number of the pilots leaving Bristow are going to CHC, including a number of trainers, so I would guess that their training infrastructure will not to too stretched (as it certainly is now) in the months to come. CHC also have quite a few pilots away doing AW139 courses at present, so I guess we'll be seeing the first one in Nigeria soon.
cyclicoyibo,
The new GPS with TCAD on its moving map display adds considerably to the spatial awareness of pilots. I find it one of the greatest aids to safety in Nigeria, especially when one can spot the number of pilots who are economical with the truth when reporting their positions! I think the 212s do a good job mostly because they are flown by pilots with more local experience. The huge influx of new pilots and the pressure to get them on the line as P1 means that many pilots are now being cleared far earlier than would have been the case a few years ago.
I think the number of calls which have to be made in the PHC area is quite ridiculous and it's certainly unecessary to include all the information one currently has to include on every call. Satellite flight-following systems are now relatively cheap and easy to install and if all aircraft had them fitted, and details of POB and fuel left at base on take-off, for a lot of flights, all that would be necessary would be to pass routes, ETAs and heights to enable us all to keep clear of each other. It would also help if the NAMA would raise the height of the base of the PH TMA so we could have decent height separation, instead of only 300 feet at the lower altitudes, forced on us by being crammed into just 1,500 feet of available airspace.
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Old 1st Oct 2006, 18:59
  #1189 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: AFRICA
Posts: 153
Danger

Single pilot in a 412
Is the situation so bad in Bristow
Can anybody confirm this ?
Very soon they might use UAV
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Old 1st Oct 2006, 21:29
  #1190 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: uk
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The only place Bristow used to fly the 412 single pilot was Calabar, not sure if that is still the case.
Would have thought in these days the client would require & pay for two pilots, donít want to comment on what happened (not knowing the facts) but an extra pair of eyes never hurts.
If they still are flying single pilot it just goes to show that the oil companies still have double standards and show hereby what really is important to them (and it isnít safety as they like you to believe).

Greetings

Finalchecksplease
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Old 2nd Oct 2006, 13:14
  #1191 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Lagos
Posts: 245
fcp,
I think you'll find that Bristow are operating the 212/412 single pilot in PH. It just depends on the client and Addax have flights from PH as well as calabar now. Whether this will change as a result of the accident or because of client contractual requirements remains to be seen. I wouldn't be surprised to see all the oil companies calling for 2 crew ops in the medium twins fairly soon.
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Old 2nd Oct 2006, 16:30
  #1192 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Wahala
Posts: 9
You Want to Talk Safety.. So Let's Talk ..!!

Hello all,
It is interesting to catch up on this thread again. It has been a while.
Of the many things being discussed I see the issue of safety in the skies in Port Harcourt area is right up there AGAIN.
It wasn't so many years ago that those in Port Harcourt (i.e. all the different companies pilots as well as reps from NAMA, NAF Base, PH ATC) Would meet on a 6 monthly basis (or more if necessary) to discuss issues of air safety and procedures in the PH zone and surroundings.
This forum enabled pilots to meet each other and put a face to the voice they would hear on the radio everyday thus beaking down competitive barriers and developing friendships and tolerance to each other. After all flight safety is a common issue not a competitive one. So meeting and solving issues which affect us all is for the common good and it does not affect competing companies commercial interests.
Much progress was being made over time and just when things were being put in place that made sense the N factor emerged and sent everything spiralling back another 10 years. FAAN and NAMA decided in their wisdom to change out all their management in the PH International airport and the NAF was closed(again). The new management who had no idea of all the hard work put into developing workable procedures in PH airspace decided to sweep clean and do their own thing without listening to what the operators wanted(needed).
Since then management in the flying companies have changed and there no longer seems to be the desire to have these inter operator meetings about flight safety. It looks like CHC see themselves as the biggest operator so they can call all the shots without consulting others. All this does is create animosity between operators which ultimately could result in dangerous practices as other pilots may be unwilling, unable or unaware of what CHC's imposed procedures are.
All the fancy machinery such as TCAS is nice and certainly should be used if available but I have to agree that let's address the basics first and work out from there. Radio calls, local knowledge and basic airmanship need to be seriously improved. And let's get back to talking to each other again because when we know each other we become more considerate of each other and that creates a friendlier and safer work environment. After all it is only each other we can rely on when we are out there flying. Your company director can't help you when you are in bad weather and a congested airspace. So we should all push our managers to organise more general safety meetings between all operators in the Delta Area. This should be gladly supported by our companies because the last thing they want to deal with is a mid air accident. Let's not wait until then to do something about it.
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Old 2nd Oct 2006, 18:16
  #1193 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: West africa
Posts: 18
Thumbs up TCAD etc.

Tokunbo,
Of course any aids that improve flight safety have to be good for all of us. The use of TCAS/TCAD benefits all pilots, even those without. Even if only 50% of aircraft in the Delta area are so equipped then the chances of avoiding collisions have to be vastly improved. Perhaps we should congratulate CHC on the speed with which they have modernised their fleet. My point really was that, considering their limitations, they are no substitute for experience, and, above all, training. The level of both of which seem to be on a very slippery slope!
The TC incident was pretty much as stated earlier, having struck the leg the pilot was preparing to ditch but realising that he could still fly, was able to land on the adjacent rig. regardless of the original cause of the incident, it sounds to me like a fabulous piece of airmanship. As for the single pilot issue, absolutely nothing to do with the perceived shortage in Bristow. The contract is for one crew, although I hear that that will change in the new year.
4axis
I must say that I am in agreement with just about all of your post. I see a lot of socialising between CHC and Bristow at the line level. Obviously helped by the fact that there has been so much movement between the two companies. Any Bristow pilot who has been here for more than two years probably knows more people in CHC than in his own company! The problem lies in getting the management together in one place. "Delta operators" meetings are still planned, but far too often are cancelled at short notice as one or more companies can't make it (as last week). There was an agreement last year that the passing of "souls on board and endurance" to the NAF base was not required except from aircraft originating there. However, even this small step seems to have been reversed. The issue of raising the base of the TMA is one very close to my heart, I believe that it would be the single most important factor in improving safety in the Delta. It would enable us to produce a proper system of routes within the zone with proper seperation. However, I can't see it happening in the near future, too many factions seem to have an interest in maintaining the status quo. Also, does Port Harcourt International need a CTZ larger than Heathrow? I think not. If the CTZ was reduced to 10nm radius the NAF base would be outside and would instantly halve the number of radio calls needed in the early stages of flight. Again, unlikely to happen due to the loss of revenue to NAMA. Anyway, safe flying and please keep up the inter-company co-operation at the pilot level where it really matters.
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Old 3rd Oct 2006, 23:31
  #1194 (permalink)  

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Location: Australia
Posts: 316
Nigerian Hostage Situation

Sadly, yet another kidnapping.

Twenty-five people have been kidnapped and another five have been killed in a massive raid on a convoy of oil barges in Nigeria.

About 70 armed men in speed boats staged the raid.

Five soldiers who were riding in military patrol boats protecting the convoy were killed.

Twenty-five Nigerian employees of Royal Dutch Shell were kidnapped and their whereabouts is unknown.

An organisation representing three militant groups claimed responsibility for the attack and demanded the release of militant leader Mujahid Dokubo-Asari.
Source http://www.abc.net.au/news/newsitems...0/s1754975.htm
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Old 3rd Oct 2006, 23:35
  #1195 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: AFRICA
Posts: 153
Bristows RA Eket Attacked

Bristow compound in Eket has been attacked

Seven expatriates have been kidnapped.

Source http://www.oyibosonline.com/
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Old 3rd Oct 2006, 23:53
  #1196 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
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Bristow Management Response

Hi Froggy_Pilot

Wonder if Bristow Management will be able to use the "it's a one off event" management position? After all it didn't even happen in Lagos!

Cheers,
Musket33
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Old 4th Oct 2006, 00:03
  #1197 (permalink)  

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Nine of 25 kidnapped oil workers freed

Militants who attacked a military convoy escorting oil workers in the restive south freed nine of 25 the Nigerians taken in the deadly raid as fresh violence flared Tuesday, company and military officials said.

Eurwen Thomas, a Royal Dutch Shell PLC spokeswoman, had no further details on the remaining 16 Shell subcontractor hostages, taken Monday in southern region where most of the crude from Africa's largest oil producer is pumped.

Also Tuesday, militants attacked a boat carrying oil-services workers in the same area of the swampy Niger Delta, wounding several soldiers, including one seriously, said a private security official.

The official spoke on condition of anonymity because of company rules against speaking to the media. A military official, also prohibited from speaking to reporters, confirmed an attack.

Monday, Army spokesman Maj. Sagir Musa said earlier at least five people died and nine more were missing after around 70 militants in black shirts and red bandanas sank two military patrol boats in Nigeria's oil-rich southern delta.

Troops were escorting diesel, supplies and employees in the volatile delta region, where attacks over the past year pared away nearly a quarter of Nigeria's usual output. Nigeria is Africa's largest petroleum producer and the fifth-largest supplier of crude oil to the United States.

Ojediran said no oil workers had been killed or injured in Monday's attack, although one civilian working for the military had perished. A group calling itself a coalition of militant groups in the Niger Delta region claimed responsibility.

The coalition demanded the release of imprisoned militant leader Mujahid Dokubo-Asari and said the killings were in revenge for attacks by soldiers on local communities.

However, an e-mail from the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta, one of the groups the coalition claims to represent, denied responsibility for the attack.
Source: http://edition.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/af...kers.freed.ap/ and http://www.oyibosonline.com/cgi-bin/....pl?record=812

Any further news of the Bristow situation anyone?
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Old 4th Oct 2006, 00:29
  #1198 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
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Thumbs down Bristow Attack

There are a number of companies sharing the estate in Eket with Bristow. It's thought that most of the hostages are not Bristow. Situation still confused but the military are very upset at the number of their own killed in the attack near Cawthorne Channel and there's a possibility hostages have been taken as before near Warri/Escravos so the perpetrators can threaten to use them as human shields if reprisals are taken. Even so, all were released unharmed eventually. Let's all pray it will be the same again.
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Old 4th Oct 2006, 00:43
  #1199 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Planet Blue
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confirmed...

I was there...
1 indonesian pilot, 1 avionics engeenier,,,, no news, very sad,,,
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Old 4th Oct 2006, 08:31
  #1200 (permalink)  

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Update re Eket situation

At least 7 foreign oil workers kidnapped in Eket

At least seven foreign oil workers were kidnapped in a militant attack on an oil industry compound in Nigeria's southern oil-producing delta on Tuesday, oil industry sources said.

The workers -- including three Britons and two Malaysians -- were taken from a compound in Eket, close to the operational base of ExxonMobil, which produces about 800,000 barrels a day in Africa's top oil producer.

Two Nigerian security guards were killed in the attack, the sources added.

"The incident took place at Eseakpan residential area for service companies in Eket. Two civilian guards were killed. Three British and two Malaysians were among those kidnapped," one oil industry source said.

No other details were immediately available.

Earlier on Tuesday, officials said about 25 Nigerian staff of a Royal Dutch Shell contractor were abducted and seven soldiers were missing after a raid on Monday on a convoy of boats supplying oilfields in a different part of the delta.

At least three soldiers protecting the convoy were killed when about 70 gunmen in speed boats attacked the barges carrying fuel and other supplies to Shell facilities in the remote Cawthorne Channel in Rivers state in the Niger Delta.

It ended a period of relative quiet in the Niger Delta, which accounts for all oil output from the world's eighth-biggest exporter. A sixth of Nigeria's production capacity has been shut down since February following a wave of militant attacks on oil facilities that month.

The supply disruption from OPEC member Nigeria has contributed to several spikes in world oil prices.

Monday's attack did not affect production as it occurred on a river far from any facilities, company sources said.

The Niger Delta was relatively quiet in September after a spate of kidnappings for ransom in August. A total of 18 oil workers were abducted that month in eight separate incidents. One of the hostages was shot dead by troops during a botched attempt to release him, while all the others have been freed.

Violence in the delta is rooted in poverty, corruption and lawlessness. Most inhabitants of the wetlands region, which is almost the size of England, have seen few benefits from five decades of oil extraction that has damaged their environment.

Their resentment toward the oil industry breeds militancy, but other factors such as the struggle for control of a lucrative oil smuggling business and the lure of ransoms also fuel violence.
Source http://www.oyibosonline.com/cgi-bin/....pl?record=814
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