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SAR S-92 Missing Ireland

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SAR S-92 Missing Ireland

Old 19th Apr 2017, 14:21
  #1261 (permalink)  
 
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I don't think this is a matter of being cheap, it looks like a matter of inexperience in the SAR world. The CivSAR machine in question appears to have had both the staff and the equipment to operate as you suggest, but it looks like the operator lacked the experience to put those tools to good use, and the crew were not adequately prepared to deal with their input.
Punto - the problem is that even with well trained ex-mil radar operators, the civil system won't allow those without flight crew licences to be responsible for the navigation of the aircraft.

So, even if the rear crew are trained to use the radar ( and they do have the screens in the cabin to do so) they can't 'control' the aircraft in the same way as a mil Radop would have done in the Sea King.

Personally I see this as a retrograde step that pushes workload to the front of the aircraft in poor weather or at night when it could be managed much better using more of the crew.

Perhaps it is something that could be addressed through the AOC to give derogations from the 'normal rules'.

However, I wouldn't be surprised to find that some CivSAR crews do operate the 'old-fashioned' way because they have ex-mil Radops with a great deal of skill and knowledge in manipulating the radar.
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Old 19th Apr 2017, 14:24
  #1262 (permalink)  
 
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Need help from you guys!!
The distance between the Rocks (when RADALT callout was triggered) & Blackrock is approx. 1250 metres. Time elapsed from RADALT callout being triggered & time of impact is 28 seconds. That equates to 44.64 mr/sec..160.71 KM/hr ...or 86.7Knots
Does this mean tailwind was 11kts ???
I have't been at the controls of an aeroplane since 1994. Forgotten most theory !!!
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Old 19th Apr 2017, 14:29
  #1263 (permalink)  
puntosaurus
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This overlay issue is bigger than just radar. I was in a 169 recently and the factory educated pilots 'discovered' that transponder returns are only displayed on the MFD in RA mode. In TA mode which is much more common for that helicopter operation, no returns are displayed.

Their training included a reasonable slug of time in a Virtual Interactive Procedure Trainer which is supposed to get you used to the controls and displays at lower cost than the full sim. Seems like there ought to be a lot more canned scenarios to display the quirks of the system.

However the problem is that nobody seems to be able to forsee the quirks until there is an accident to point them out.
 
Old 19th Apr 2017, 14:33
  #1264 (permalink)  
 
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Although a slightly different situation....the concept of marrying up data from different sources is the same. During periods of foggy weather producing visibility not much greater than the length of my 41 foot sailboat ... overlaying the Radar display onto the Chart plotter (moving map driven by the GPS) was very effective in navigating in the waters I called home.

The auto pilot was in Heading mode ...the chart plotter told me where the Markers, Buoys, and known obstructions were supposed to be ... and the Radar showed where they actually were along with other Vessels that were in my area. Add in AIS data being tagged to the Vessel Returns and getting around was easy and safe.

Buoys have a habit of being moved by storms or by the Coast a Guard as the channel shifts due to storms and erosion so GPS alone cannot be relied upon ...thus making the use of Radar so important. Determining the reason for the Variance is the problem as you might not know the cause of the Return not being where at the Map depicted location ...and there is nothing showing on the Radar at the GPS designated location.

Even Oil Rigs move about with delayed notice to air crews sometimes!

Resolving ambiguity can be an issue while using this new hi-tech equipment.

The Nav system could carry out a pre-planned Route with up to 99 Waypoints in the Nav Mode.

Point being ... technology properly used can very much enhance Situational awareness!

Even the Fog Horn on the boat was automated.....leaving a hand free that otherwise would have been ringing a Bell!

The Radar had to be properly adjusted to obtain the most accurate Returns as it had multiple modes that included both surface Returns and Weather modes just as Aviation Radars do.






Originally Posted by Scattercat View Post
My comments above are more concerned with IMC / VMC conditions & the "how to" rather than the rules governing such. Yes, the correct use of the radar, should form a very important part of the picture, but it should be cross-checked with all other available data sources. The advent of reliable, GPS based navigation systems, allows for RNAV only IMC letdowns, which should then complement radar return information. I would be concerned if, during an ARA, the rig GPS location was not where the radar was painting a target, & visa versa.

Last edited by SASless; 19th Apr 2017 at 16:01.
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Old 19th Apr 2017, 14:36
  #1265 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by IRCG SMC WHITEY View Post
Need help from you guys!!
The distance between the Rocks (when RADALT callout was triggered) & Blackrock is approx. 1250 metres. Time elapsed from RADALT callout being triggered & time of impact is 28 seconds. That equates to 44.64 mr/sec..160.71 KM/hr ...or 86.7Knots
Does this mean tailwind was 11kts ???
I have't been at the controls of an aeroplane since 1994. Forgotten most theory !!!
Possibly, but the co-pilot called BLKMO at 1.3nm 15s earlier and 45s before impact. That would have given them 104kt over the ground by my reckoning.
 
Old 19th Apr 2017, 14:46
  #1266 (permalink)  
puntosaurus
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Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
Punto - the problem is that even with well trained ex-mil radar operators, the civil system won't allow those without flight crew licences to be responsible for the navigation of the aircraft.

So, even if the rear crew are trained to use the radar ( and they do have the screens in the cabin to do so) they can't 'control' the aircraft in the same way as a mil Radop would have done in the Sea King.

Personally I see this as a retrograde step that pushes workload to the front of the aircraft in poor weather or at night when it could be managed much better using more of the crew.

Perhaps it is something that could be addressed through the AOC to give derogations from the 'normal rules'.

However, I wouldn't be surprised to find that some CivSAR crews do operate the 'old-fashioned' way because they have ex-mil Radops with a great deal of skill and knowledge in manipulating the radar.
Well HEMS are allowed to have technical crew members, so I don't see why SAR can't.

PS. I just looked through PART-OPS and it looks like there is no SAR Special Approval (SPA), and only an indirect reference under Specialised Operations (SPO-HEC Human External Cargo). So it wouldn't surprise me if SAR operators had HEMS approvals already.

Last edited by puntosaurus; 19th Apr 2017 at 15:56.
 
Old 19th Apr 2017, 14:52
  #1267 (permalink)  
 
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Thanks Puntosaurus.
Further query distances on radar is it calibrated in nautical miles or statute mile??
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Old 19th Apr 2017, 15:47
  #1268 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by IRCG SMC WHITEY View Post
Thanks Puntosaurus.
Further query distances on radar is it calibrated in nautical miles or statute mile??
Nautical miles
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Old 19th Apr 2017, 16:20
  #1269 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by puntosaurus View Post
Well HEMS are allowed to have technical crew members, so I don't see why SAR can't.

PS. I just looked through PART-OPS and it looks like there is no SAR Special Approval (SPA), and only an indirect reference under Specialised Operations (SPO-HEC Human External Cargo). So it wouldn't surprise me if SAR operators had HEMS approvals already.

Is anyone able to give a basic overview of the Irish SAR regulatory regime? Particularly regarding rear-crew.


I'm familiar with the UK situation and Crab and I are amongst those who believe there are missed opportunities there regarding the skills of 'SAR Technical Crew'. The same seems to be true about a number of territories. An opportunity exists for a regulator to grow a great big pair and make a world-leading move toward SAR Technical Crew being a licensed aviation trade.
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Old 19th Apr 2017, 16:39
  #1270 (permalink)  
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If I'm right, then with Ireland being a member of EASA, an Irish SAR operator will come under PART-OPS and have an EASA AOC with a SPA-HEMS and SPO-HEC approval (and possibly a few others as well) issued by the local competent authority (in this case the IAA). In that case you don't need a regulator to strap on a pair, just an operator. And all they need to do is describe the role of the technical crew member appropriately and make sure he/she is trained and checked in their ability to discharge the role.

PS Guys are we absolutely sure that the rear crew are not already technical crew members ? I can't imagine that the winchman is not, given that he must be interacting with the crew during winching operations ?

Last edited by puntosaurus; 19th Apr 2017 at 19:16.
 
Old 19th Apr 2017, 17:11
  #1271 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by IRCG SMC WHITEY View Post
Need help from you guys!!
The distance between the Rocks (when RADALT callout was triggered) & Blackrock is approx. 1250 metres. Time elapsed from RADALT callout being triggered & time of impact is 28 seconds. That equates to 44.64 mr/sec..160.71 KM/hr ...or 86.7Knots
Does this mean tailwind was 11kts ???
I have't been at the controls of an aeroplane since 1994. Forgotten most theory !!!
There are some numbers in the report that don't quite add up, but not significant to understanding this.

Last edited by cncpc; 19th Apr 2017 at 18:16. Reason: Clarifying not disputing Whitey's calculations
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Old 19th Apr 2017, 18:03
  #1272 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by cncpc View Post
There are some numbers in there that don't quite add up, but not significant to understanding this.
They add up quite nicely. It has been previously posted that the surface winds were 220 deg at 19 to 21 knots. (Bellmullet 220 at 19Kt, Mace Haed at 230 at 21kt), just about right to create the ground speed as calculated.
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Old 19th Apr 2017, 18:12
  #1273 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by rjsquirrel View Post
They add up quite nicely. It has been previously posted that the surface winds were 220 deg at 19 to 21 knots. (Bellmullet 220 at 19Kt, Mace Haed at 230 at 21kt), just about right to create the ground speed as calculated.
I wasn't referring specifically to the groundspeed issue or to the numbers in that poster's calculations.
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Old 19th Apr 2017, 18:51
  #1274 (permalink)  
 
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PS Guys are we absolutely sure that the rear crew are not already technical crew members ? I can't imagine that the winchman is not, given that he must be interacting with the crew during winching operations ?
Punto, yes they are technical crew members but that, as I understand it, isn't the same as being allowed to be responsible for the navigation of the aircraft because they aren't licensed in the same way as a pilot or flight engineer.

However, that conveniently ignores the fact that when the winch operator is using the aux hover trim (or whatever it is called in the S92), he is flying the aircraft - perhaps because the pilot can over-ride him it doesn't count?

It also ignores the responsibility for tip and tail clearances when winching where, if he/she makes a mistake, it can be disastrous.
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Old 19th Apr 2017, 19:12
  #1275 (permalink)  
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Well I can absolutely assure you that PART-OPS-SPA-HEMS can be interpreted to allow the technical crewmember to do all of things you need them to do, provided that the role is described in the operations manual and that the training and checking required for the role is also set out in Part D.
 
Old 19th Apr 2017, 19:13
  #1276 (permalink)  
 
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Interview on Irish radio this morning

On RTE Radio Good Morning Ireland programme this morning (= Today on BBC Radio 4) there was a discussion of the accident.

Two separate elements were discussed:

i) The failure to follow appropriate protocols in releasing transcripts from the cockpit. This was the "official" basis for the interview, it seems.

ii) However, at the end of the interview, the President of the Irish Airline Pilots Association appeared to make some trenchant criticisms of the reliability of the information being provided by the systems to the crew.

Criticisms which the interviewer, pressed for time by an editor no doubt, failed to pursue.

http://www.rte.ie/radio1/morning-ireland/#2463200


The item is number 9 or 10 in the running list when you scroll down.

Last edited by BigFrank; 19th Apr 2017 at 19:16. Reason: Attempt to embed link
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Old 19th Apr 2017, 19:36
  #1277 (permalink)  
 
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Those who are arguing for a dedicated radar operator are - or rather were - very capable military SAR operators. Unfortunately, they also have no experience of genuine SAR in a modern civilian setup, so are arguing with knowledge of only one side of the coin. It also is simply not true that tech crew cannot provide navigational guidance to pilots; that is exactly what happened pre-NVG at night at low level using the FLIR. Unhelpful, provocative and outdated. It certainly adds nothing constructive to the analysis of this incident, IMHO.
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Old 19th Apr 2017, 19:47
  #1278 (permalink)  
 
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louisnewmark

The extensive debate and arguments over how radars work and are used tend to support any call for dedicated operators. Too much compromise evident in this accident. Just my opinion.
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Old 19th Apr 2017, 20:04
  #1279 (permalink)  
 
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It also is simply not true that tech crew cannot provide navigational guidance to pilots; that is exactly what happened pre-NVG at night at low level using the FLIR. Unhelpful, provocative and outdated.
Louis, the key word you used is guidance, they do not control the letdown in the same way as a military radop would and the responsibility for terrain clearance remains with the pilots whereas that role was held by the Radop.

I have plenty of friends and ex-colleagues in the new SAR service so I am not talking from a position of complete ignorance - I have flown the 139 in the SAR fit and had to approve certain letdown profiles being taught to other nation's students. The rear crew could observe, monitor and assist but the responsibility remained with the co-pilot.

As I said earlier, I suspect that some SAR rearcrew play a much more 'traditional' role in any radar letdowns.
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Old 19th Apr 2017, 20:09
  #1280 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by dervish View Post
louisnewmark

The extensive debate and arguments over how radars work and are used tend to support any call for dedicated operators. Too much compromise evident in this accident. Just my opinion.
Radar is for the purpose of avoiding objects at the same height as you are flying at, or near to it as to be a danger.

A properly designed IFR approach achieves the same thing, much simpler, and you know that an organized system with several layers of oversight is protecting you, your crew, and your aircraft.

It seems extraordinary that people are running around in the ocean, with rocks and ships in that ocean, in the dark and poor vis, thinking they might run into something and relying entirely on a technology which can generate so many posts about how it can't work properly sometimes.

I know that it can resolve to that in SAR ops where there is a real rescue in play. This aircraft was simply going into a refuel site, often used.
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