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JFK ATC in the news...

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JFK ATC in the news...

Old 9th Mar 2010, 18:34
  #281 (permalink)  
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"It is always easy to lend vicarious support to those who would rebel or display maverick tendancies, simply because the rules seem overly restrictive, or because we would wish to live in a different time, but there is little doubt that the parties involved in this incident, showed precious little awareness and perception as to the likely consequences." So says rmiller774.
Some of us did live in a different time and do indeed remember and still feel the horror of 33 years years ago when we read about the Los Rodeos crash. To this day it remains the deadliest of all aviation accidents. A factor in the causal chain which conspired with all the others to result in this tragic accident was communications. We did not then have this wonderful internet to sit at home and exchange our views. If we had such a means of discussion shortly after this accident I wonder how many would have countenanced the actions of a controller who had allowed his kid anywhere near his console let alone issue clearances.
So I whole heartedly agree with rmiller`s closing sentence. We need to learn from our mistakes, paid dearly with lives, and develop awareness and perception towards the consequences and the unforgiving nature of the whole business of aviation.
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Old 10th Mar 2010, 14:16
  #282 (permalink)  
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Agreed. Now can we close this thread?
Why? Because people have different views to you?
For what it's worth, I believe the whole thing is a storm in a teacup, and it only makes me happy that during my flying days a more mature attitude was taken, and I'm glad I retired before all this sanctimonious crap became the norm (and seemingly loved by many)
Yes, I'm a sinner, I let my kids drive when they were 13/14, I let them have control of the puddle jumper when they were unqualified (I also did the same for my 8o year old mother) I let them ski unsupervised when they were 10, walk to school on their own, drink wine at the table with us when they were 14, smoke if they wished (they didn't and never have) stay out late with friends and all the things which would have me certified, locked up and certainly pilloried by some of you modern thinkers.
The result is two happy boys approaching middle age, one a controller at Eurocontrol and t'other a copper in Brisbane and nobody dead or injured due to my gross irresponsibility.
Where did I go wrong?
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Old 10th Mar 2010, 14:45
  #283 (permalink)  
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Close the thread because everything that could possibly be said, from the inane and amateur to the meaningful and professional, has been said. You for example, ROG, are simply retelling "when I was a kid" tales that we've already heard 50 times.

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Old 10th Mar 2010, 16:08
  #284 (permalink)  
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Sorry, have been away for a few days.

I have not made it political, but if that is how you want to see it, fine. You're not the only one to have lost family members to a terrible regime applying "laws" that were barbaric, nor, I'm afraid, will you be the last one. But you'd be surprised how little of the real devestating effects is known outside continental Europe, which is where many of the respondents reside.

If every Austrian is offended by my reference to a time and era that has cost them dearly, they can say so. Knowing some of them I do not accept your claim.

Good on you for being an accident investigator. I am not inexperienced myself. And I do know that there is a fine line between following guidance in the interest of safety, and taking decisions that contravene or seemingly contravene, or may be perceived to contravene such guidance in the interest of safety.

While the controller certainly misread the FAA's leeway for non-standard delegation of voicing a clearance, I'm sure he took every precaution to ensure that safety was never compromised.
After the fallout of this one, I'm also sure that there will be no reoccurrance, and the kneejerk restrictions that will become reality to save face will even further take away anything that used to make this a satisfying as well as a challenging industry.

But in every job where you need people strong enough to make difficult decisions based on their experience and gut feeling, as well as their knowledge of the rules and systems they work with, you will need strong characters to perform them. And with that (it has been mentioned earlier) comes a modicum of arrogance, because one needs the confidence to take positive charge under difficult circumstances.

What is called "safety" nowadays has nothing to do with protecting the innocent and everything with protecting the (reputations of) companies, managers etc. Just read the thread about hi-vis jackets. In that sense, the controller should have known better, but somehow he and his supervisor did not.
I'm sure that I have been more of a distraction by talking unexpectedly at inopportune moments during numerous visits to ATC in the places where I worked than a supervised 9yearold with clear instructions what to do and what not to do, and a dad ready to intervene if and when necessary.

So if you still feel offended by my mentioning of the most perverse extrapolation of the "law is law" line of thinking, drop me a PM and we can compare numbers of relatives butchered by totalitarian regimes.
But I do hope that you will be able to see that between the black and white there is a large grey area where we all have to operate now and again, and where always following the rules (just read a nice chapter in "the naked pilot" about Comet take off crashes caused by the pilots concerned doing everything by the book, the book just did not cater for reality) may get you killed rather than keep you safe.

We all want to operate safely, but of we can combine safety with a smile on outr faces, why not?
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Old 12th Mar 2010, 20:33
  #285 (permalink)  
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Except for the controller and supervisor...was anyone hurt or killed, was any property damaged...no, thought not....
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Old 13th Mar 2010, 09:15
  #286 (permalink)  
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Oh dear,sense of humor failure.People assume that because ATC is such a responsible job,that you cant have a bit of fun once in a while.Having fun does not equate to lack of professionalism.Dad was always in control and it made the kids day.See no harm in it whatsoever.
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Old 13th Mar 2010, 09:45
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Ranamin - I presume that your logic would apply if my next door neighbour (who is a brain surgeon) let his daughter (who is 6) "have a go" while he has your head opened up working on your brain?
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Old 13th Mar 2010, 10:09
  #288 (permalink)  
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dontdoit, that analogy has been done to death. Absolutely no comparison whatsoever and it clearly demonstrates that you don't know what you're talking about. Grow up.
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Old 13th Mar 2010, 10:11
  #289 (permalink)  
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ROG quotes / writes:

Agreed. Now can we close this thread?
Why? Because people have different views to you?
I always find it very amusing when folks ask for a thread to be closed.

Why is that?

You've made your point, and don't want to give the floor up to anyone who might disagree or degrade your latest brilliant statement?

Really, if you don't like the thread, all you have to do to stay happy is to NOT READ IT.

Unless that alone doesn't make you happy, and you feel some need to CENSOR or control what others wish to express.

Agreed. Now can we close this thread?
Hell no.

We're just getting to the point where our unofficial protectors are showing up for work.

Speaking historically, the very best discussions happen on this site right after someone of the type likely to litter my sidewalk with discarded floss-forks cries "close this thread!"

Some part of my soul would like to be able to say "dude, don't be THAT GUY!"

The other part, which relishes foolish statements, wins out every time.

Go ahead. Be that guy. Be all you can be!

There. I have fixed everything wrong, so let's get back to the discussion...
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Old 13th Mar 2010, 13:09
  #290 (permalink)  
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Stepwilk, having admitted my guilt at being "boring" (a post which has been deleted by the good old Mods) I must still take exception at your comment
You for example, ROG, are simply retelling "when I was a kid" tales that we've already heard 50 times.
You don't know me nor my kids and those "tales" have not appeared on line before. Perhaps it is symptomatic of your confused thinking with regard debate. It matters not one hoot whether the same point is raised a thousand times, and whilst it may be boring to some, it remains a vital and potent aspect of any exchange of views. What is more surprising is that you seem to agree with the argument that the whole affair was no more than an ill judged bit of fun, but you wish to strangle the possibly different opinions of others. I also think such views are ill considered at best and downright ridiculous at worst, but I still wish to hear them and be prepared to be won over and change my opinions.
Rottenray, thanks for the support.

Last edited by Romeo Oscar Golf; 13th Mar 2010 at 13:11. Reason: Omission
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Old 13th Mar 2010, 13:15
  #291 (permalink)  
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Brain Surgery Often Done by Students

Shock! Horror

But the reality is that at some point of time the student is given an instrument in his hands and told to get on with it.

He/She is of course carefully watched and has seen how it is done.

Every brain surgeon was once a student

Same thing with every controller.

Most likely the suspended controller and supervisor have managed trainees and supervised them while they were on the mike. This student happened to be a bit younger and likely no less conscientious.
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Old 13th Mar 2010, 16:24
  #292 (permalink)  
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But the reality is that at some point of time the student is given an instrument in his hands and told to get on with it.

He/She is of course carefully watched and has seen how it is done.

Every brain surgeon was once a student
Hopefully the alarm response of oops occurs only on dead people
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Old 13th Mar 2010, 23:04
  #293 (permalink)  
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Regarding the post above...check out this guy's "homepage" listed on his profile...then I think you'll agree whatever he has to say is a total 12 yr old wannabe but know it all opinion...

BTW, when was the last time any of you real pilots let the FE decide on and sign off the fuel load and flight plan???...IOMAP does it all the time according to info found on his profile....what a waste of time and bandwith...
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Old 14th Mar 2010, 00:58
  #294 (permalink)  
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The problem with Humans...

"Salus Populi Suprema Est Lex" *
cicero (106 BC - 43 BC)

Roll on the floor laughing. Tears, phlegm, the works! My wife doesn't see the funny side though, at all....
Did the ATCO err? absolutely, [probably] broke local, and FAA rules, posible even FCC.
Did the Pilots err? possibly.
Did the ATCO Supervisor err? If aware of the event, absolutely.
Was safety jeopardised? probably not.
Was it correct? absolutely not.
Should it occur? No.
Was it funny? ROFL, LOL.
Should parties be sanctioned? Absolutely. But I would think with understanding of the human condition.
Would it show up as a question on the ATCO's fitness for promotion? Would be a open question on supervisory skills/ability to maintain a compliant program....

We preach and teach human factors, tacitly acknowledging the human element of events, yet cannot see that this is also the strength of a system; it is not rigid, it is flexible. Computer based system are perfect, until they fail completely (MS BSOD, NASA Mars Climate Orbiter sort of stuff).

An excessively harsh penalty to the ATCO for being human and erring, would appear to ultimately be a punishment to the child, for being a child and showing interest in the occupation of his father. Frankly there are far more serious issues to deal with from a compliance and regulatory aspect, and the risk to the public was negligible.

This wasn't AFL593 at Novokuznetsk, nor was it PAA1736/KLM4805 at Las Palmas, and the conditions were evidently quiet enough for the event to be "conducted" such as it was.

"Lord, what fools these mortals be!"
William Shakespeare (1564 - 1616), "A Midsummers Night's Dream" Act 3 Scene 2.

I am more concerned with the continued disregard of the FAA to the travelling publics safety in the condition of KJFK's infrastructure. The lack of lighting, navaids, poor design and congestion are real risks to the public, far higher on any day than the actions of a misguided parent. That JFK is the entry point to the new world/first world is embarrassing given that it has a level of operational excellence nearly equivalent to Malabo, EG or Harare Zimbabwe.

The use of short, non standard lit ungrooved runways with tailwind/wet conditions due to design and community noise concerns etc directly impacts operational safety, and requires crews to assess the conditional acceptability of each approach to this airport.

With the problems of non standard communications at JFK on a good day, I'm not sure that the child voice wasn't an improvement.....

FDR (not a substitute)

* "[The] Welfare of the People is the ultimate law"
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Old 14th Mar 2010, 17:19
  #295 (permalink)  
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JFK Controller

Dear Mr. Mouse,

The child was never controlling anything.
Merely relaying the real controller's instructions, and very nicely I might add!
(Just like when oceanic flights talk to AirInc, or a non-ATC relay station.)
Only professionals understand these issues and people with little or no knowledge of such complex and technical matters should keep their opinions in their under pants, where it belongs!


Captain Ross "Rusty" Aimer (UAL Ret.)
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Old 24th Mar 2010, 07:10
  #296 (permalink)  
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Read this Dutch Blog:


and scroll down to 13.07.05 (it's in English).

There was a prize to win with a Dutch Radio Station, where you could win an invitation to Schiphol Tower and do the RT to 'Vertigo 2005', the plane U2 traveled in during their tour.

What about that? Totally unprofessional?

I reckon some people are acting like they have their mic up their a**. Just calm down, nothing can go wrong if someone just repeats what he or she is being told to say.

Have a little fun these days, things are worse enough.
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Old 31st Mar 2010, 17:05
  #297 (permalink)  
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at least the kid was not on Clearance Delivery
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