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Chinese Pilot refused to give way to Qatar Aw. Emergency

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Chinese Pilot refused to give way to Qatar Aw. Emergency

Old 27th Aug 2011, 15:59
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Lessons learned from the Avianca crash in New York changed some minds regarding both crew and ATC actions in response to low fuel level. If accurately quoted, the Chinese official's comments don't seem to demonstrate anything positive in the way of a modern safety culture. Good on the Chinese ATC and the Qatar flight crew in this case though.
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Old 27th Aug 2011, 15:59
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I am now flying in shanghai, the Juneyao Airbus captain is a Korean pilot,and now the crew is grounded for investigation.
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Old 27th Aug 2011, 16:04
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It seems from all reports that had the Qatar crew not declared an emergency then they would have landed below minimum final reserve. Our ops manual tells us that we must declare an emergency if we expect to land with less than final reserve. The fact that they landed with a little bit more suggests they did exactly the right thing. I am with Wizofoz and most other posters on this one...well handled.
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Old 27th Aug 2011, 18:29
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Well in the apparent simplest form the Chinese ATC understood the request from Qatar, issued appropriate ATC instructions to the locals .... and the locals told ATC to "f**k off".

Either the local ATC will win this and sort it out - or the local airlines will be allowed to control the airspace as their own, in which case why waste money on ATC??
Why not just a free for all, first in best dressed and...well a few collisions, people die but .... such is the price for progress??
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Old 27th Aug 2011, 21:41
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Before jumping to more speculations, and start throwing stones ( Korean pilot flying in China, bad english of ATC, etc, I smell this coming )may I remind some of you that ATC is normally done is sectors with different frequencies/different controllers. What was declared on one frequncy was most probably not head by the controller handling final APP and/or by the A320 crew. How this was relayed upon, which words/language were used to convey the urgency, could perhaps shade some light to this incident. If you're on very short final , were cleared to land and going around means tons of paperwork in your non-just culture airline you might decide differently than most of us would.


Back to Avianca/NY : since then fuel emergency is declared ealier, but still language used is often misleading. Crew tend to mention tons or pounds of fuel, while controllers are interested in minutes remaining. "2 Tons" means little to ATC.
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Old 28th Aug 2011, 00:46
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But the way media report actual fuel (time) remaining is un-just.
What are the implications to the crew on landing with less than final reserve (30mins) fuel from the company and local authority/ac reg authority standpoint?

I think most sops state something along the lines if it becomes apparent landing with less than final reserve, a pan/mayday must be declared which means they did the right thing and as usual media have not helped (suprise suprise)
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Old 28th Aug 2011, 01:08
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fish

Qatari should have just cut in front of Juneyao. No one in China honours the queue anyway.
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Old 28th Aug 2011, 01:19
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I am keeping an open mind on this incident at the moment; however 3200kg on the 773 is 30minutes. 5000 kg maybe a bit early for a mayday but saying that who knows what other suitable aerodromes was available that day?

Were other aircraft diverting? Congestion at other airports etc.

May I also suggest 2 things?
The Media. We know they exaggerate. Lets take what they write with a pinch of salt { or pepper }

Second, letís remember the main issue here, an emergency was declared; regardless if it was above the min fuel state, an emergency was still declared and should have had priority. ATC tried to give priority but the A320 refused to break off the approach. This is not acceptable nor justified .
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Old 28th Aug 2011, 01:20
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Originally Posted by ATC Watcher
Crew tend to mention tons or pounds of fuel, while controllers are interested in minutes remaining. "2 Tons" means little to ATC.
Agreed that time remaining is what matters for both crew and ATC in the event of a "low fuel" situation. The quantity of fuel in pounds or kilos is probably only relevant to rescue fire fighting personnel in the event of a planned emergency landing. It's up to pilots to communicate fuel status in the form relevant to the situation. If necessary, I suppose ATC could request the pilot state it in the form required.

One thing the FAA did is to incorporate the term "minimum fuel advisory" into the US pilot/controller glossary. I would expect most ATCs appreciate being informed in advance when any undue delay will result in a low fuel emergency being declared. If ATC can accommodate the low fuel aircraft without the special handling then there might not be any need for an "emergency" and the cascading effects on the surrounding airspace that go with it. If a "pan-pan" for low fuel is the closest equivalent in ICAO lexicon, then it seems to be the appropriate notification to make. Another poster alluded to some ATCs being unresponsive to a PAN-PAN, so in this case a mayday call might be the only remaining option open to the flight crew.

What happened in this particular incident is still somewhat unclear due to the lack of reliable information source, but this Chinese official's accusation of "lying" on the part of the Qatar crew is concerning. I don't think it's unreasonable to suspect the language barrier is at play here.

Absent any credible contradictory information, ATC and the Qatar crew seem to have handled the occurrence as they should. The local airliner crew's role in this questionable at best and a blatant violation of right of way and compliance with ATC instructions regulations at worst. I suppose having the ATC audio and a reliable translator would be of some value in any attempt for us outsiders to make an informed judgment.
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Old 28th Aug 2011, 01:39
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Chinese officials will no doubt try to spin this as the foreigner's fault. I would not trust them to have any sense of impartiality in these circumstances.

If I declare an emergency then I expect priority handling. I also expect to answer to my reasons for declaring an emergency, however I will do that after being safely on the ground and blocked in at the gate.
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Old 28th Aug 2011, 01:41
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My 2 cents worth. I was also holding at pudong the time this all happened.
The problem as that there was alot of planes holding and Pudong approach was being less than helpful for everyone and would not let any plane divert to any near by alternates. Typical Chinese ATC " cannot" procedures!
I believe it was at this time when ATC refused to allow any aircraft to divert to nearby ZSSS or any other nearby airport that Qatar made the choose and made there decision they were landing at ZSSS.
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Old 28th Aug 2011, 01:42
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Once I was in a situation where we were going to land at destination with 45 minutes fuel because we burned our alternate fuel getting lined up for a 30+ mile final into SFO. Yes, I could have diverted to the alternate but they were 8 miles apart and would have required resequencing so what was the point. I don't know the details of this incident but sometimes the emergency airplane might not have any less fuel than you.
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Old 28th Aug 2011, 02:03
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crwjerk

Juneyao should have "turned right" and got out of the way!!!
Almost 15 years in Hongkers and my Cantonese is crap, but I got it thanks.
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Old 28th Aug 2011, 03:20
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PAN calls are recognised in China.
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Old 28th Aug 2011, 07:50
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Landed with 45 mins fuel and he declared an emergency? Am I missing something here?
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Old 28th Aug 2011, 11:07
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I find it hard to follow the facts because none has been officially announced and we don't know which part of the STAR or Rwy approach the respective aircraft were placed, nor their altitudes. However I am sure both were desperate to get into HongQiao as Chinese ATC won't realistically allow any alternate in that area except for Pudong.
Almost 15 years in Hongkers
bekolblockage, if you stood at the crossroads at QiBao metro station, the aircraft on about 1nm final to 36R at HongQiao would be just scraping the rooftops - reminds me of Kowloon City in the good old Kai Tak days.
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Old 28th Aug 2011, 12:29
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If the pilot was Korean and flying in China wouldn't they both be speaking in English as Korean and Mandarin are very different, or do most Koreans also speak Mandarin? But until the ATC calls are published we won't know for certain what occurred.
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Old 28th Aug 2011, 17:53
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Wondering what the Qatari procedure might be with regards to declaring a Mayday or Pan...
I know it differs from airline to airline with a set ICAO baseline. But what is the QR procedure.
Just a thought ..
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Old 29th Aug 2011, 02:36
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Devil

Looks like the juneyao pilots called the qatari bluff!

If the juneyao crew were on final approach after extensive holding, a missed approach would certainly put them in similar low fuel state necessitating a pan/mayday call of their own! So there might have been multiple pans/maydays on account of one highly premature/premeditated mayday from the Qr aircraft. Just playing the devil's advocate.
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Old 29th Aug 2011, 15:28
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Spoke to a Korean lad, and I don't have any means of confirming his sources.
The Juneyao Capt is a local chap.

And according to a local news link, the official mentioned that in such willful misconduct act of potentially endangering public safety, the skipper is facing possible death penalty.

I definitely agree with the willful misconduct part. And it's regardless whether or not the Chinese capt called the bluff on Qatari, he should have given way.

On the other hand, death penalty.. I sure hope we are not going down this road.
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