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ANA Captain let FA's take controls

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ANA Captain let FA's take controls

Old 6th Apr 2008, 14:26
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Air Central (ANA feeder) Captain let FA's take controls

Story of a pilot with Air Central (based in Tokoname, Japan), operating a Fokker 50 as an ANA feeder, letting the FA's take the controls from the right seat. The article is less than insightful, but key points are;

1. Happened on Dec 14, 2007
2. Aircraft was on a repositioning leg with no pax.
3. The Japanese Construction and Transport Ministry just found out on Friday.
4. Ministry talk of suspending the pilot.

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Old 6th Apr 2008, 15:38
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I know things are different now, but surely this sort of thing is hardly unheard of, especially a few years ago?

A colleague of mine was a purser with BA (10+ years ago) and he said he'd sat in the RH seat of a airliner.
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Old 6th Apr 2008, 16:11
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You don't know any RAF police do you? Be better letting the police dog land the plane.

A likely tail!
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Old 6th Apr 2008, 16:31
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T'was almost the norm in days gone past. I've sat in the RHS of several airliners in the 70s through to the 90s. On one occasion I sat 2 hrs in the LHS of a D.H. Comet 4 (with pax). Sadly times have moved on

And, before someone brings up the Aeroflot A310 accident, in my case there was always a fully qualified pilot chappy strapped-in in the other seat.
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Old 6th Apr 2008, 16:34
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Dreadful stuff!! Sounds really dangerous to me. As far as I know FAs are not trained to constantly monitor cockpit gauges. Also the FA could have done something silly and there could have been developments leading to a thing called a "spin". (I read about this in a book called "Handling the Turboprops"). I really believe (you know, genuinely) that few FAs would know how to recover from a spin. There are aerodynamic forces involved in this condition that FAs know nothing about. All pilots should be aware just how dangerous the controls of an aeroplane really are. Clearly industry wide retraining of pilots is required. In fact we are talking about a lethal weapon - the Fokker 50 is well known to be impossible to fly and constantly on the edge of ....... terminal finality. Around 50 perfectly serviceable empty seats were put at direct risk. Also we really should be told how the FA got though security in the first place (another T5 glitch?). I blame this entire event on BALPA. Too busy worrying about BA to keep an eye on world affairs. Also, even though there were no passengers the FA should have been bringing coffee to the pilots to ensure a safe operation (was there even a safety report about this systemic failure?). This entire event reflects very badly on everybody. Except me. I run a professional operation with a total absence of bull****. Really. That is what allows me to make exceedingly wise pronouncements and observations here on PPRuNe about matters of great import.
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Old 6th Apr 2008, 16:39
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Jeeez have you people never watch an airline disaster movie? Who is it that always lands the plane safely at the end? That's right, the flight attendant.
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Old 6th Apr 2008, 16:47
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Jeeez have you people never watch an airline disaster movie? Who is it that always lands the plane safely at the end? That's right, the flight attendant
Hmmm, well considering some of the FA's I've met, perhaps better luck landing the aeroplane would be with the aforementioned police dog...
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Old 6th Apr 2008, 17:24
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In 1988 the Pan Am ALPA JFK LEC was fired for alledgedly letting a flight attendant fly a 747. He got his job back in time to enjoy the shutdown in 1992. He later had a brief career as an FAA Air Carrier Inspector.

On September 25, 1988, Gay was employed by Pan Am as the captain of Pan Am Flight No. 81, a Boeing 747 passenger aircraft enroute from New York to Los Angeles. During the course of the flight, First Officer Dennis Brooks temporarily vacated the co-pilot's seat and Flight Attendant Naomi Kaneda sat in his place. It was reported that Ms. Kaneda put her hands on the control yoke, but it never was clearly established that she actually manipulated the controls of the aircraft. The testimony of certain witnesses before the National Transportation Safety Board did indicate that Ms. Kaneda actually hand-flew the aircraft and that the aircraft deviated from its assigned altitude at that time.

An investigation of the incident was conducted by the Regional Chief Pilot of Pan Am, and he concluded that Gay was guilty of misconduct in the incident. The Chief Pilot found that Gay had allowed an unqualified person to manipulate the controls of the aircraft, in violation of Pan Am's Flight Operations Manual and Federal Aviation Regulations. As a consequence of these findings, Gay was discharged by Pan Am on December 31, 1988.
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Old 6th Apr 2008, 18:10
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XXPLOD, I fear you have been misled. As I understand it, there would have been at least 1 member of the Flight Deck crew left to land the aircraft during these japes
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Old 6th Apr 2008, 18:13
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I've heard stories of Hercules pilots taking up Paras for parachute jumps, donning parachutes themselves and bailing out, leaving the loader or a RAF policeman to land the Herc!
A variation of this was an old favourite in the RAAF Herc squadrons during the days of National Service.

Last sortie of the day, 96-odd (odd!) very callow youths SLF-ing it up the ramp of the Herc and one of the pilots, in the Loadie's flight jacket, begs and wheedles the 'pilot' (the Loadie wearing the pilot's jacket), to "keep his promise to let him have a fly". After repeatedly saying it can't be done "...because we've got pax. I thought we'd be empty when I said you could fly it", the 'pilot' eventually relents and gives in to the 'Loadie', who climbs over all the already seated pax telling everyone who'll listen that he's going to fly the aircraft for the very first time.

90% of the pax almost certainly saw through the ruse, but from the quoted post above, there were obviously a few who swallowed it.

I only ever did it once out of Wagga, (with Loadie who was only a year or two older than I was, which made the ruse believable). I don't know if the Grunts bought it, but we were all highly amused with ourselves.

John Balfe wrote a very readable book about flying C47s in Papua New Guinea with the RAAF's 38 Squadron during WW2. On a massed airlift of veteran American troops straight from the battlefield from Lae to Port Moresby, he tells the story of him and his loadmaster pulling this same stunt.

The US Sergeant with the thousand yard stare who was in charge of the chalk had just survived three months in the jungle fighting the Japanese and wasn't about to let these strange "AuSSies" kill him now. He stuck his Thompson in the face of the "loadmaster" who was about to take off and refused to listen when the suddenly no longer laughing crew tried to convince him that the man in the pilot's seat was in fact the pilot.

They had to taxi clear of the active and totally disrupt a very tight departure sequence - and explain to the OiC of the airport why they weren't able to get airborne. The senior officer was NOT amused.
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Old 6th Apr 2008, 18:41
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Yes, yes, yes - but did the ANA captain get the traditional 'thank you' present from the stewarde....sorry, 'Flight Attendant' ?
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Old 6th Apr 2008, 18:42
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Unauthorized seat swaps were the custom in years past. On the 727 it was considered kind to put the FE in the FO's seat for a leg once in a while.

UAL had a DC-8 (double drop-rise) freighter crash after one of these seat swaps.

PROBABLE CAUSE: "The flight crew's failure to follow procedural checklist requirements and to detect and correct a mistrimmed stabiliser before the aircraft became uncontrollable. Contributing to the accident was the captain allowing the second officer, who was not qualified to act as a pilot, to occupy the seat of the first officer and to conduct the take-off."
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Old 6th Apr 2008, 19:44
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I am going to confess to having been guilty of allowing select passengers to occupy the F.O.s seat in DC3's back in my younger days....this was done in cruise flight usually north bound in the high Arctic and I was careful to explain what not to touch and why......

.....I engaged in that activity for the express purpose of adding to my trap line.

By the way the F.O.s also benefited from these activities as I was one of the first to recognize the benefits of CRM and the importance of sharing the work day activities, when they had scoped out someone they fancied I allowed the F.O. to give up his seat to allow his selected prize to sit in his seat.

I hope you all don't think to badly of me for these lapses of professionalism way back in my youth?
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Old 6th Apr 2008, 19:46
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When I was a very young boy (back in the late 70's) flying on a BA Tristar to Daharan, I sat in the LHS for a few mins as a very kind flight crew made my day.
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Old 6th Apr 2008, 22:14
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Only a few years ago, before I had completed my pilot's licence and rejoined society, I was crewing a Caribou on an airdrop sortie in SWBTA. The sortie involved a TAC flight to the DZ, followed by the drop and then a more 'leisurely' flight back to our airfeild. during the return flight, an army air despatcher was allowed to sit in the RHS while one of the pilots went back for something to eat. He ended up 'flying' the 'bou for about 20 minutes. Turning onto headings and holding about 1500AGL (but not touching the engines). Only on the last leg did the pilot take his seat again.

No names, no ROPs...
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Old 6th Apr 2008, 22:20
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Cabin crew having a go at flying the aeroplane in the cruise?
Yes, so what - no big deal.
Even safer now - no-one can walk in and catch you
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Old 7th Apr 2008, 00:07
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I recall reading somewhere (I think in Peter Forman's book) that a Royal Hawaiian pilot once offered Lindbergh the controls on on of those flights to Hana, but that he refused and said something to the effect of "I've done enough flying to last a lifetime".
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Old 7th Apr 2008, 00:57
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Two of my young children sat in the left hand seat of a classic 747

Yes they 'flew' the A/C under the supervision of the S/F/O - I was the F/E. So What.
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Old 7th Apr 2008, 01:08
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Then there's the Apollo 12 LEM ascent from the moon - when Intrepid was safely up and (even more safely) around the back side and away from prying eyes, commander Pete Conrad let Al Bean fly it for a while before rendezvous with the command module. All highly unofficial, but clearly planned by Conrad.
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Old 7th Apr 2008, 01:09
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A few great moments

Over a lifetime as Traffic/Flight Traffic Officer/Sales & Marketing/Management I have had the privilege of being "up front" for many many landings and t/os during scheduled ops.
I have sat in the right hand seat of Dc3 and 4,1049,707,748 A/C all with NO pax on board and
as a unashamed cockpit junkie those times where the high light of my aviation career!
All this started in the late 50s----there are many stories of the cockpit that I would love to recount some funny others hairy- like the time I thought we were going in and it was all over but one must be discrete however---------------------------

A big thank you to the skippers for all those times.
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