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Pilots admit they took a nap on air

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Pilots admit they took a nap on air

Old 11th May 2007, 16:43
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Angel

somewhere in Asia :
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w...1/DSC00944.jpg
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Old 11th May 2007, 21:01
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Thumbs up

aerotransport.org no no no, you got it wrong, the skipper IS NOT asleep, I write again not asleep...
He merely concentrates for the difficult approach to come
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Old 12th May 2007, 19:37
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Talking

I guess, rather believe that controlled rest has more pros than cons.Specially on long routes or on flights being taken at odd hours.

After all, we are humans....

Avy-yo
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Old 12th May 2007, 23:02
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20 Million Dollars

Hey everyone

Did you know NASA spent 20 Million on a sleep study concerning Pilots.

The results were a 20-40 minute power nap will help you regain up to 40% of your effective alertness.

Now how many of us could of told them that for say.....1 Mil.
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Old 13th May 2007, 10:03
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I have an issue with the 40 minutes timing. During my training I learned about the "NASA nap" and the maximum time permitted to avoid REM phase (45 min). Also, that the REM onset thershold is significantly reduced by: non-standard awakefulness paterns (red-eye) + tiredness + fatigue. Reduced by as much as 50%.
In my language, the saying "to have a nap" reads "to have a twenty", and so my long departed grandmother used to do. Ten minutes of voluntary nap brings miracles, 20 is a heaven. Personally, I am afraid of going over the threshold and have never done so (yet), have any of you experienced a problem with rest above 20 min?
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Old 13th May 2007, 10:23
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I find the comfort of the seats to be the limiting factor, really. If I can get a couple of pillows and a duvet then jam the ANR headset on top of it all, then several hours is possible... I often get the situation where both pilots are on completely different time zones, so one is nodding while the other is wide awake; why not take advantage of that?

All this business of REM and non-REM: How awake were you expecting to be at 4am, anyway? When doing ULR bunked rest, the changeover crew will probably have been in deep sleep until 10mins before. Never noticed much difference. I also suspect that ability to concentrate will return quite quickly in the event of a major problem - that's what that pesky endocrine system is for!
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Old 13th May 2007, 10:42
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When does the 40 minutes start from? From asleep? How do I know if the guy next to me is asleep? Or just got his eyes closed, and is trying to sleep.. If he takes 20 minutes to fall asleep, do I give him and hour from the point at which he closed his eyes. How do I know when to start the timing from?

I could wake him up and ask him if he has fallen asleep.

The 40 minutes is all OK when you are wired up in some NASA laboratory. On the flight deck the whole thing is a movable feast. The 40 minute nap rule is an idea thought up by some scientist and a paper pusher. Both of whom have never operated, week in and week out, long haul flights. Across multiple time zones with each bloke on the flightdeck in a different time zone.
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Old 15th May 2007, 13:29
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Anything more than 20 minutes (unless I'm completely exhausted) and I'm useless for the next 30, I can't concentrate, my reactions are shot and on more than one occasion I believe I may have fallen asleep at the wheel.

When you're driving a 26 tonne rigid 6 legger with all the manoeuvring capability of a super-tanker this really ain't good.

I carry a kitchen timer with me with 4 timers to monitor my driving hours and use this as well as my personal mobile phone and the company mobile in the cab to make sure I don't over sleep.

For those of you who want to make sure they're not in my way when I'm driving, look for a 3663 lorry with me behind the wheel. The username gives my identity away.
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Old 17th May 2007, 00:31
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I find it to be a pathetic practice to regulate nap time on the flight deck. It's highly individual. I've slept anything from 3 minutes, to 8 hours on board, and regardless of lenght of nap it's at least somewhat beneficial. However, in my case, the longer-the better. Sometimes sleep is taken in my seat, sometimes on the flight deck floor, and sometimes in bunk rest/first class seat. Generally I'm fully alert within 5 minutes of waking up. I could easily deal with an emergency within 20 seconds of waking, regardless of time spent snoozing.

My way of functioning is great for napping on board, but equally useless for sleeping in the non-flying world. I'm a light sleeper, and wake up easily. Once I'm awake, I leave the sleep-tired state quickly, and can't easily fall asleep again. To tell me I can only sleep for maximum 40 minutes is absolutely ridiculous, and serves no purpose from a post-sleep alertness/safety point of view. There are many guys I know who are the same. Let us sleep as much as we want, and for those NASA guys who require a 30 minute ramp-up period, make sure you don't sleep to much for your own comfort/safety level. Rules don't always have a proper place in the FOM. Guidelines would be a much better solution in many cases.
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Old 17th May 2007, 09:03
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Fix info,

Wouldn't it be fascinating to do some research, which I agree might be quite difficult to do......of having a Captain fast asleep in a First Class seat followed by a multi engine flame out in the dark (as has happened) and then see how long(er) it takes him to sort it out from being strapped in his seat and doing his job.

I am sure the passengers would find it most entertaining (depends which film they were watching.....)

Which airline did you say you fly for?
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Old 18th May 2007, 01:49
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Errr.... a little scared here!

Ok, I am not a pilot, merely one of those that deals with the SLF, but for you commercials out there you have hundreds of lives in your hands! As a member of those who work in the cabin, SEP guidelines state we have to check that you are ok every so often... so do you stipulate that you do not want to be checked on? ok, so maybe you or the FO is awake??? and the other alseep? heaven forbid something happen to the officer in control! I admit unlikely but heck it's possible! If you really are fatigued during these sectors, should you be operating? If it really is so hard going, would an observing pilot not be a help... sorry to be a moaner, but even on a fully loaded 1 class 738, 20 mins nap to you, decompression happens, Fo passes out and your already unconscious, thats 2 Flight deck, 4 crew, and 189 SLF all gone bye bye! just hope CRM training is up to date with you guys and your crew! Scary stuff! I would be that pain sccm that would not let you sleep I'm sorry... if you're tired... you're in command, don't take the flight out!
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Old 18th May 2007, 02:05
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Bestonboard,

In my company (and doubtless all others that allow controlled flightdeck rest), the policy is for us to tell the cabin crew that we will call them periodically (every 30 mins) instead of them calling us when one of us is napping. I always reiterate that they are to call us if we miss a call to them by a few minutes.
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Old 18th May 2007, 02:40
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Thanks for your responses, I honestly meant no disrespect... My life is in your hands! I would be happy if I am kept informed of your situation, would just hate to think you would not want to be disturbed... (I am aware that this has happened...) I fly mainly transatlantic routes with night flights on the return sector (STD not until 00.30z)... Your health and wellbeing is in my best interests... On a sector this long CC are not entitled to rest... yes we are not in control of the a/c, but if something were to happen to one of you it is our responsibility to deal with your incapacitation... I would not dream of tellinga senior officer what to do... just trying to understand the mentality... my apologies!
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Old 18th May 2007, 08:55
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Bestsonboard,

The idea behind pilots having "controlled rest" during the flight is that it is better for them to fall asleep then than at some point during the approach/landing. There are few things that require *immediate* responses in cruise flight and also involve both pilots. One of them is a rapid decompression but the only really crucial part of the checklist is to get on oxygen, the rest can be done later. It would be very difficult to sleep through an event like that with all the warnings, etc. going off, not to mention being shaken by a guy with a mask on!

Humans are diurnal mammals and it is against our natures to be awake and functional during hours of darkness (according to your body clock). You can lessen the effects of this by taking breaks and being well rested beforehand but it is difficult to get 'quality' rest during your personal daytime when your body is wide awake; being a professional in the same industry, I'm sure you are intimately familiar with this. However, our jobs differ in that the 'difficult bit' comes near the end of the flight for pilots (It doesn't stop until you're on the stand), whereas you have already coped with the peak in your workload.

Thankfully, the idea of 'superhuman' pilots soldiering on through the night, ever alert and watchful, never blinking and always vigilant has died a death. Not that anyone was actually capable of living up to that 'standard' anyway. Have you ever been tired and driving a car late at night, then experienced a sort of 'twitch' where your head nods slightly in an involuntary way? Lasts only a fraction of a second? Well, that's called "microsleep" and there is a good chance you were 'out' for some while before that happened but you don't remember it... Imagine that happening to a pilot during the approach/landing phase. Scary eh? That's why most sensible operators have introduced SOPs for controlled rest during periods of low workload - it's probably one of the most cheap and effective ways of increasing flight safety known to man!
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Old 18th May 2007, 09:07
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Perhaps if 'controlled rest' was called 'asleep on the job' some of the previous statements might come across slightly differently. DB
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Old 18th May 2007, 09:19
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'Asleep on the job' is what you get on a long flight if you haven't had any 'controlled rest'...
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Old 18th May 2007, 15:19
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Thank you for setting the record straight. I would much rather you be in control at the critical stages! Thanks again, and happy flying!
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Old 18th May 2007, 18:52
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And so it happened again....
A pilot took a nap last night on the flight I was on.
But I really needed it
20 minutes nap and I came over the yawning period
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Old 22nd May 2007, 04:25
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As SLF I reckon you guys and gals are just as keen as I am on getting back on the ground in one piece. If a snooze in the cruise means you're actually awake on finals, that's good with me.
Let's not forget that an inherently dangerous mode of transport has been made remarkably safe. As Guy Gibson said: "If [...] an air line flew three flights a day to Italy for three years running and lost only two aircraft, they would consider themselves one of the safest air lines in the world".
(He was writing about the fact that they had 1336 Lancaster sorties to Italy in one month, for two losses. And don't blame me for his wonky maths).
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Old 24th May 2007, 09:43
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RE: Pilots admit they took a nap on air

Ooof, wrong thing to do, isn't it?
They should've just rested BEFORE or AFTER the flight.
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