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Vietnam Airlines 777 narrowly escapes being shot down

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Vietnam Airlines 777 narrowly escapes being shot down

Old 18th Jun 2006, 09:12
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Vietnam Airlines 777 narrowly escapes being shot down

From "Der Spiegel" online edition: (rough translation):

A story is just emerging as to how about 200 passengers on a Vietnam Airlines 777 flying from Hanoi to Frankfurt just narrowly escaped being shot down. According to "Viet Nam Net" the 777 was en route during the night of 17/18 April, using air space in Ukraine, Poland and the Czech Republic for over 65 minutes without any radio communications. As the plane deviated from the prescribed flight path, Czech authorities were prepared to shoot it down, according to "Viet Nam Net" online magazine.

Jan Pejsek of the Czech Ministry of Defence confirmed these events to Der Spiegel in principle. At 0545 on 18th April 2006, Czech Air Force personnel detected what to them was an unidentifable aircraft which had not communicated with Prague ATC. Considering the possibility that this could be an unfriendly military aircraft, two fighter jets were sent up to intercept the plane. However, the target turned out to be a Vietnamese civilian jet, and a few minutes after visual contact with the fighter jets, radio communications were established.

According to Vietnamese media reports, the fighter pilots were astonished to see that both pilots of the Vietnam Airlines plane were asleep. "They were asleep and had the plane flying on autopilot for one hour and five minutes", says "Viet Nam Net". There is neither confirmation or rejection of this from Czech authorities.

Whilst Vietnam Airlines have denied the report, the entire crew, including cabin crew has been suspended. (Apparently, there are standing orders for a cabin crew member to visit the cockpit every 15 minutes to establish that all is well up front).

The report goes on to describe various scandals that have shaken Vietnam Airlines, including the recent arrest of F/O Tran Van Dang at Sydney for trying to take out US$ 500,000 from Australia without declaring this money.
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Old 18th Jun 2006, 11:03
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Only an hour!?

Boeing should install on VA special bench seats in the cockpit (to make it more uncomfy to sleep) or some kind of robot to knock dem on d jars every 15 min...
I used to bite my palms to stay awake. Never ever took even a cat nap with a viet pilot in d cockpit. Used to take bout 30 minutes after T/C for d average viet pilot to be sound asleep. Actually it was better to let dem sleep all d way to DXB - less trouble...
I was doin less dan 30 sec for a loo trip...
Prob is one of dese days dey wil run out of fuel while blisfully asleep... And its not without a precedent!
Cabin crew not big diff. Used to find dem tucked like sardines on d floor in d mid galley, some times six abreast... D job was just a cheap way to shop abroad for say... stolen electronics from Japan, etc.
Poor VA pax!!!

http://www.spiegel.de/reise/aktuell/...421838,00.html

Last edited by swish266; 18th Jun 2006 at 11:16.
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Old 18th Jun 2006, 11:07
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It must have been a deeeeeeeeep..... sleep to miss the Pilot Inactivity Monitor EICAS Alert???
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Old 18th Jun 2006, 11:13
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gengis

Not good enough for viet pilots.
Seen n heard it so many times with no effect on dem...
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Old 18th Jun 2006, 12:48
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I am genuinely intrigued - does the B777 EICAS really have a 'pilot inactivity' alert or warning?
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Old 18th Jun 2006, 13:08
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Terminal boredom

In the 70's a TWA freighter 707 (crew of 3) overflew LAX westbound - the SELCAL chimes finally woke them before they reached a critical fuel state.
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Old 18th Jun 2006, 13:29
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SFI145

Yes, it's known as a CAM ( Crew Alertness Monitor ). Basically a system linked into the FMC ( Flight Management Computer ) which continuosly monitors switch action on MCP, EFIS control panel, CDU's and radios to name but a few. After around 15 minutes or so after last switch action was detected, an advisory message 'PILOT RESPONSE' is displayed. If there is still no action approx 5 minutes after this then a caution message is displayed. A further 5 minutes will lead to a warning. In the descent, the timings are reduced to 5,6 and 7 minutes respectively, ie, after 7 minutes in the descent you'll be getting a warning. Pushing ANY monitored swich will cancel the 'PILOT RESPONSE' message. Simple, but it works.

Err...........apart from in this case it would appear!
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Old 18th Jun 2006, 14:41
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You know, that would actually encourage me to sleep. Knowing that there was something that will start chiming at me in 20 minutes or so would make me feel much more comfortable about closing my eyes.
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Old 18th Jun 2006, 15:05
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asleep at the switch...its all about money isn't it? fatigue, augmented crews, onboard rest, prolonged flight with cabin altitude near 8000' ...everything comes down to the allocation of resources.


j
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Old 18th Jun 2006, 15:58
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One can only imagine what would have happened if a TCAS RA had been issued.

If they could sleep through the EICAS Pilot Inactivity alerts..... sigh... maybe the pilot seats need to be wired to the L AC Transfer Bus for a 110V/440 Hz alert! Seriously though, this is not on. We have all been in that situation i know, but this is way over the top


BYMONEK: I think the alert stops at Caution. Don't think it'll go to Warning....
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Old 18th Jun 2006, 16:14
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Originally Posted by swish266
Boeing should install on VA special bench seats in the cockpit (to make it more uncomfy to sleep) or some kind of robot to knock dem on d jars every 15 min...
I used to bite my palms to stay awake. Never ever took even a cat nap with a viet pilot in d cockpit. Used to take bout 30 minutes after T/C for d average viet pilot to be sound asleep. Actually it was better to let dem sleep all d way to DXB - less trouble...
I was doin less dan 30 sec for a loo trip...
Prob is one of dese days dey wil run out of fuel while blisfully asleep... And its not without a precedent!
Cabin crew not big diff. Used to find dem tucked like sardines on d floor in d mid galley, some times six abreast... D job was just a cheap way to shop abroad for say... stolen electronics from Japan, etc.
Poor VA pax!!!

http://www.spiegel.de/reise/aktuell/...421838,00.html
Quite surprising on such a forum,whatever the previous experiences of S266,to find these kind of remarks about another culture...I would say:quite racist aren't they??!!
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Old 18th Jun 2006, 16:15
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Hi everyone,

I fly the B777 and we've tried the pilot resonse feature enroute, on the long transoceanic segments.
The timing between the different kinds of warnings can be adjusted by the maintenance dept, it is something that an airline can easily adjust.
In my airline the settings are:
20 mins: eicas message "pilot response" and no sound.
25 mins: eicas caution message "pilot resonse" and a caution bleep.
30 mins: eicas warning (red) "pilot response" and a continuous wailer.

It is impossible to sleep through the warning wailer, it is too loud. So I guess that Vietnam airlines have got their settings at more than an hour....
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Old 18th Jun 2006, 16:33
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Fox Niner, BYMONEK - ok i stand corrected then. The system does go to EICAS Warning level!
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Old 18th Jun 2006, 16:57
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racist??

Originally Posted by QCM
Quite surprising on such a forum,whatever the previous experiences of S266,to find these kind of remarks about another culture...I would say:quite racist aren't they??!!

How can it be racistic if it is true
Then it is called facts, no matter what colour you are born with.

Accept it and realise that not all cultures are equally diciplined
 
Old 18th Jun 2006, 17:15
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Originally Posted by UP and Down Operator
How can it be racistic if it is true
Then it is called facts, no matter what colour you are born with.

Accept it and realise that not all cultures are equally diciplined
Gentlemen,

this is not racistic, this also has nothing to do with the culture,
this is against a corruped, communits government and it's airline,
such regimes have nothing to do with culture, race or colour...
(you remember, we used to have a communist regime in Germany)

This has to stop, that pilots do favour to some ministry officials,
by smuggling their black, bribe money back and forth,
and they keep their jobs regardless of capabilities and safety standards.

This is the point of the problem.

Just my 0.02$
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Old 18th Jun 2006, 17:16
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Many posts here from individual pilots who say more or less the same thing, collectively...IE, long duty rostered periods, crew fatigue, overworked (and sometimes underpaid), and while many of these complaints taken individually, a few might have merit, I would suspect that the vast majority are, shall we say, ah....BS.

Lets face facts here, folks.

Those who actually joined an aircarrier as a FD crew member asked for WORK when they first entered the human resourses front door, and now that they have found it, some (but certainly not all) constantly complain.
Well, there is a simple remedy for these folks, who apparently are bored to death of the routine...find another job, move aside, and let the next guy in line have a go at the position.
There seem to be no end to the number that want to do so, so why not accomodate these folks...who knows, perhaps the numbers of complaints will drop to lower levels.

Harry Truman said it best, IMO....'can't stand the heat, stay out of the kitchen.'
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Old 18th Jun 2006, 19:42
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We have an 'unofficial' policy, if you HAVE to rest the eyes for ten mins, that a member of the cabin crew is required to sit in the jump seat. On top of that, more information and focus on rostering and preparation for the flight in terms of rest, diet etc. It seems obvious but it does happen, 3 a.m. catches you out sometimes regardless of rest. ( a similar incident prompted more focus on the subject ) ( ... including fighters.....) and if you just can't keep 'em open a quick cat nap does wonders. Also promotes an environment where you do feel you can ask for 10 mins instead of struggling through till, say, the appraoch...
(Know of a F27 F/O too scared to wake the capt as they trundled past destination into the Indian Ocean! Obviously far more issues there than rest.....)
Policy is also that a crew member is called in when you need to pop out to the loo. Tedious but makes sense.
Happy Napping
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Old 18th Jun 2006, 20:13
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I am genuinely intrigued - does the B777 EICAS really have a 'pilot inactivity' alert or warning?
The 744 has one as well. It becomes quite a game on a long night over the Pacific to resist twiddling ANY knob or dial long enough to make it go off -- almost enough to keep you awake on its own!
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Old 18th Jun 2006, 20:50
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Hmmm, alarm 'signals' to wake up the crew.

In years gone past, this was nothing more than a bicycle bell mounted to the captains or first officers foot rest, connected with a sturdy rubber band to the Bendix doppler leg change lever...the lever flips over, the bell rings, waking the pilots (and flight engineer), position report follows, wind in the next leg in the doppler...then back to sleep.

Worked like a charm...

Dozing for dollars...low tech style.
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Old 18th Jun 2006, 20:51
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The same story occured with an Air France flight few years ago. Returning from Asia, also in the Ukrainian airspace. The plane was escorted by fighters for a certain time, and ATC had to vector some traffic on the AF way. Sleeping captain, and F/O chatting with a stewardess, headset on the knees. It also lasted an hour before they realise.
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