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A319 CDG go-around nearly goes down Sept 2009

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A319 CDG go-around nearly goes down Sept 2009

Old 4th Nov 2010, 21:24
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And that's my point... they should never have been in the situation where they felt like they had to put the autopilot on. It should have already been in from when they started their approach.

I don't want to divert this into another discussion about the mindset of using and not using automatics.

My point is that when the weather isn't top notch, as in this situation, use whatever means you have at your disposal to keep your workload to a minimum.
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Old 4th Nov 2010, 22:00
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I have lost count of the number of times (particularly at airports shall we say "less than major") where I have been given actual wx as being close to , but not at, limits, be it CloudBase or vis, only to have the hotshot next to me question why I have mandated an autopilot approach to an autoland assuming not prohibited on the particular approach plate.
I have also lost count of the instances where, at minima, we have on same occasions, seen enough to ascertain our position, but not enough to comfortably disengage the autopilot and wrestle the beast onto the ground, whilst trying to correlate the limited visual cues with some semblance of spatial orientation sufficient to prevent an awesome "arrival".
I have been in this situation often enough that my justification now is simply "it is much better,believe me" and cannot fathom why an experienced guy would wish to increases his workload in such weather, at such a major airport, what was he trying to prove, and to whom?
One thing he certainly proved beyond doubt was his total inability to make best use of the resources at his disposal. "Top Gun" isn't what is required, and wasn't what he achieved.

What is it again ? "a superior pilot is the one who uses his superior judgement to avoid circumstances where he may be called upon to demonstrate his superior skills" QED.
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Old 4th Nov 2010, 22:09
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IMO the question is did the authorities 'cull the herd'?
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Old 4th Nov 2010, 22:50
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captplaystation
actual wx as being close to ... question why I have mandated an autopilot approach to an autoland assuming not prohibited on the particular approach plate
I would agree with your reasoning provided LVPs were in force.

If LVPs are not in force, then I would not "mitigate" the poor weather by doing an autoland - since I need to "monitor" the autopilot in poor vis. I'd rather do as trained, and monitor myself / colleague doing a manual landing. I'll leave autolands for, as trained, LVPs or "practice" ones in good weather.

I've seen enough "practice" autolands frighten me, largely I suspect due protected areas infringed, in good weather to not wish to play the same game in marginal CAT 1.

So
I have lost count of the number of times (particularly at airports shall we say "less than major") where I have been given actual wx as being close to , but not at, limits,
I agree is an issue - fly a coupled App to Manual Landing from DH and if the references are not comfortably visible at DH, GA and tell ATC to implement LVPs - I'd suggest don't take part in their game and do Autolands without the appropriate protection

NoD
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Old 4th Nov 2010, 23:27
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SC.

When the cloud base is 100' above your minima, flying into an airport as busy as CDG, I would absolutely use the automatics every single time. The whole point of automatics is to take the workload off us and enable us to step back and monitor the whole situation better.

At the time of the G/A, the PF was obviously so overloaded with the flying that he forgot to put the thrust levers into the TOGA gate.

Don't get me wrong, I love a bit of manual flying whenever I can and I practice it as often as I can, but only when the weather is decent. We're paid to make decisions. Making the decision that this was a good time to practice some manual flying wasn't a great one.
Absolutely. I wonder when some folks are going to accept the fact that Commercial Air Transport flying is no longer what it used to be and also thank God for the greatly reduced accident rate that has resulted from the brilliant work done by the engineers. (They are the real heros; we pilots just get paid to have fun (arguably!)

Face the facts, guys. Todays aircraft are NOT designed for manual flying as we used to know it. There is far too much MCP/MCDU/AP/AT work involved for it to be comfortable in anything but the most benign of ATC/WX environments. The PM is usually overloaded, dealing with MCP/ATC/config changes etc etc, and is mostly out of the loop as far as monitoring what the PF is doing. (Several accidents are proof of this). Worse still is the fact that the PF is usually so busy concentrating on his (rusty) flying that he has little capacity to monitor what the PM is doing (did he set the correct requested FD heading/altitude/mode change? Did he execute LNAV? Did he select the correct waypoint to execute ( must be confirmed by both). Who is calling the FMA? (Critical, and yet often missed, with dire consequences, as we know). In the old days, basic scanning was straightforward, but it's a different ballgame now.

All this should be, and usually is, no problem on nice sunny days in the local environment, but as professional pilots, this is not where we spend a lot of our time. We are usually taking off or landing around the Midnight Hour when fatigue is an issue and performance is probably not at it's best.

So why not load the dice in your favour by using the equipment as it was designed to be used? No macho at stake here, no egos .Just do a safe job. But above all, we have to "Fight like crazy against Complacency", especially the automation kind, i.e by trying to understand as best as we can (not easy!) the ins and outs of these wonderful gizmos that we have been gifted with.

Eroding flying skills? Well, I always say--head down to the local flying club (Redhill?), climb into a Pitts special and prove to yourself (if so inclined), that you still have the Right Stuff.

But please don't try it when you have 400 or whatever customers riding down the back, (including maybe your wife and kids). You'll probably find you're not as hot as you should/used to be.

Nobodys fault really, and especially for we old timers-.("The older I get, the better I was"). Today, the market demands that some of us fly ultra long haul, which means maybe one or two handling sectors a month. So I'm for max use of automation on the line, but at all times trying to "Mind the Store", i.e keeping the basics in mind. With Big Brother watching your every move these days, (unstabilised approaches, etc, etc, etc), who wants tea and biccys with the Chief Pilot? I rest my case.

(p.s no comments please from the short haul/lo co guys. I am sure you fellows are well in the groove. Flight Director? What's that!)
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Old 4th Nov 2010, 23:31
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After the melbourne similar incident, Airbus changed the go around procedure to call out FMA after initiating a go around "MAN TOGA, SRS, GA TRACK" so that if you have not gone to TOGA it should be picked up straight away.
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Old 4th Nov 2010, 23:36
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Originally Posted by studi
We don't need more use of automation, we need less, so pilots are actually proficient in handflying!
Amen brother!
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Old 5th Nov 2010, 02:35
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''After the melbourne similar incident, Airbus changed the go around procedure to call out FMA after initiating a go around "MAN TOGA, SRS, GA TRACK" so that if you have not gone to TOGA it should be picked up straight away''

And we've got a step further in that the PM checks and calls "Thrust Set'' as a belt and braces system. It not something we do often, the safety net needs to be in place.
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Old 5th Nov 2010, 07:09
  #29 (permalink)  
 
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53 year old pilot flying a manual approach down to minimums with punters on board?

When he can't cope with the go around he engages the auto pilot?

Reminds me of my younger days flying with WW2 pilots who couldn't cope with a swept wing jet approaching way on the back side of the drag curve.

Manual throttle was banned except in the case of an engine out.

Landings were often controlled crashes.

There were a few who due to "ageing" and loss of visual accommodation couldn't read the warning panel and would ask what the warning was while they were trying to manual fly.

My third employer (also "flag carrier") wouldn't allow us to fly manually (we were allowed to fly CWS but when I first tried around 5 grand on approach after an atlantic crossing it was promptly re engaged by sir).

I realized in my late thirties that I my performance was degrading so tailored my use of equipment to my physical condition (night flight, fatigue, etc).

In my last company if I had tried to fly a manual approach to minimums on a check I would have failed.

We did practice raw data as well as FD approaches but only when neither pilots were tired and never with weather below 500ft.

The simulator is the place to play heros.

On the age thread I seem to remember reading that the skipper on AF Rio flight wasn't in the cockpit when it crashed - presumably in the bunk.
If he couldn't remain awake to fly through the most dangerous weather zone on this planet then perhaps he shouldn't have been flying the route.

My third employer flew very differently to my first two, we had to learn a table of configuration+attitude+power= performance.
I initially pooh - poohed the system but realize that they were ahead of their time.

BA only taught that system on Concorde at that time (see Mike Riley's book -stick and rudder).

Apparently prior to the Rio accident AF did not have a simulator exercise at cruise level to cope with loss of air data (Aerlingus did).


And what was a 46 yr old doing in the RHS and not doing?
Command failure or ex military? Seems rather old to be in that seat in AF.

The decision was foolish to fly a manual approach to minimums with punters on board - even if he could. He obviously, on this occasion, had a deficiency in his abilities in managing and understanding the automatics.

My point is; is it a culture and training problem in Air France?
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Old 5th Nov 2010, 10:21
  #30 (permalink)  
 
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misd-agin I see that cdg is listed as the 5th busiest airport in the world (10th Jun 2010 listings). With two from the states, LHR and one from Japan above it. So it would appear misd out on that one as well!
If you ask nicely next time the capt may let you sit up the front for landing and you may get a better understanding of what the other fellas on this thread are discussing.

The Don
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Old 5th Nov 2010, 11:08
  #31 (permalink)  
 
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check your stats.

CDG no 5?

Uhm.. no? Check those stats again, or provide source please. CDG is typically around number 7 or 10 depending on what year (as well as 2010), with pretty much everyone above being American airfields.
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Old 5th Nov 2010, 11:22
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Un peau de thread drift?

Ref calling FMA modes...yes it is important, but less important than making sure the aircraft is doing what you want rather than the modes saying what you want them to say!

If you are flying le bus manually and you select TOGA you will get all ther correct FMA's but you still have to pull the stick back to point the aircraft upwards, it will not do it itself!
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Old 5th Nov 2010, 12:52
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donbdense - CDG is high on the list. Sorry, it doesn't feel as busy as some of the others on the list. Maybe it's having two landing runways/3 parallel runways vs. the single arrival runway ops, or intersecting runway configuration, that some of the 'busier' feeling airports are limited to.

World's busiest airports by traffic movements - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Been to 25 out of the top 30. Just short of 19,500 binocular hours with another 1000+ monocular hours. Probably enough to have an opinion.
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Old 5th Nov 2010, 14:07
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"Busy" can be pretty subjective. I've flown into 16 of the top 20, but LGA at 26 generally "feels" busier than all of them. It all comes down to runway configuration and departure/arrival procedures. How's that for some thread drift.
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Old 5th Nov 2010, 14:31
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sharpclassic
And that's my point... they should never have been in the situation where they felt like they had to put the autopilot on. It should have already been in from when they started their approach.
If you fly Boeing it doesn't matter, since the auto pilot disconnects as soon as you press toga. A go-around is always flown manually unless you are doing a dual channel approach (autoland). With a single channel approach, the auto pilot is not able to perform the go-around. Doing a dual channel approach with a manual landing is a very bad idea, since the autopilot will then trim the stabilizer quite a lot nose up by 370 feet. This pitch up, you do not what to deal with when you disconnect at 200 feet in poor vis. Doing an autoland when LVP not in force and no protected TDZ, may also not be the best idea, for the reasons given by NigelOnDraft. All in all no auto pilot go-around available, in the above situation.

This leads to this question; when every Boeing pilot has to do a manual go-around, how come that Airbus pilots absolutely should leave the autopilot on? Like already said, it's not that difficult to shove in a handful and pull the nose up.

..or are the manual flying skills deteriorating that much when flying Airbus?

Studi
We don't need more use of automation, we need less, so pilots are actually proficient in handflying!
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Old 5th Nov 2010, 14:56
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"it's not that difficult to shove in a handful and pull the nose up."

I don't think it's just Airbus that have a problems with G/A

Thomsonfly 737 stalled on approach says UK accident report
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Old 5th Nov 2010, 15:03
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If you fly Boeing it doesn't matter, since the auto pilot disconnects as soon as you press toga. A go-around is always flown manually unless you are doing a dual channel approach (autoland). With a single channel approach, the auto pilot is not able to perform the go-around. Doing a dual channel approach with a manual landing is a very bad idea, since the autopilot will then trim the stabilizer quite a lot nose up by 370 feet.
Not sure what model of Boeing you're talking about (377??) , but this certainly doesn't apply to any modern one!! They are all perfectly capable of flying automatic go-arounds.
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Old 5th Nov 2010, 15:04
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Cosmo,

We do it that way because that's the way that Airbus designed the aircraft to be flown. As Phantom Driver said, love it or hate it, modern aircraft aren't designed to be flown the old fashioned 'Atlantic Baron' way.

If a G/A is done by hand in a Boeing, then you do it by hand as that's the way that Boeing designed it to be done. As a result, the way that you were trained to fly your Boeing (I assume) would teach you the method and mindset of doing a G/A manually.

As the Airbus is capable of doing the G/A automatically (once we have put the thrust levers in the TOGA gate) we are trained to do it this way, especially when the weather is marginal.

It's not an Airbus vs Boeing thing, it's just the way the two different types have been designed.



Going back to my original point, we talk about the 'Swiss Cheese' Model in CRM..... this incident could have been stopped as far back as ToD when during the brief the PF had said something along the lines of... "As the weather isn't great, I'm going to leave the autopilot in till we get visual. If we don't get visual, I'll hit TOGA, get the Gear and flap up and the aircraft will fly the missed approach which is in the FMGC"
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Old 5th Nov 2010, 15:13
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Solitaire...the b737-800and 400 will have autopilot disconnect when the TOGA switch is pressed. So, yes...modern aircraft do require manual go-arounds. The 737-800 is a modern aircraft but will not do an auto go-around like the 747.
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Old 5th Nov 2010, 16:15
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sharpclassic,
As the Airbus is capable of doing the G/A automatically (once we have put the thrust levers in the TOGA gate) we are trained to do it this way, especially when the weather is marginal.
...and...
this incident could have been stopped as far back as ToD when during the brief the PF had said something along the lines of... "As the weather isn't great, I'm going to leave the autopilot in till we get visual. If we don't get visual, I'll hit TOGA, get the Gear and flap up and the aircraft will fly the missed approach which is in the FMGC"
But that is the case in point. Thrust levers were not put in the Toga detent. So how would the autopilot have helped in this situation?

Instead of the usual "use the maximum level of automation" brigade going to work, I think it would be rather more appropriate to look at the cause for not being able to execute a simple maneuver without struggling to connect the auto pilot, instead of monitoring aircraft flightpath.

You are right, it's not Airbus versus Boeing, since there are numerous examples of this being a problem across all fleets. For Boeing the most outspoken with the Turkish crash in Amsterdam.

Nevertheless, I feel it's troublesome if Airbus pilots only have the mindset to do an automatic go-around and that the emphasis of their training is to do so, as you say. It should be in their mindset to get the aircraft to a safe altitude, before completely unnecessarily messing around trying to engage the auto pilot (Boeing made sure about nobody doing so by making a minimum use height of 400 feet for the 'Atlantic Baron' NG). To me it says that this is a more pronounced problem for Airbus crew.

Your reasoning is completely false in my opinion:
Engage the autopilot (leave it on in the first place) to ensure safe flightpath.

Rather that:
Ensure a safe flight by using you skill obtained from your training and regular practice, then engage the magic to reduce your workload.

My point is, this is not an incident primarily caused by underuse of automatics, rather than perhaps poor skills and training. This should be addressed rather than allowing the management to say "Ok boys, we know that you are no longer able to safely fly the aircrafts, so please use the autopilot at all times".
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