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Midway MDW incident averted

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Midway MDW incident averted

Old 18th Jun 2015, 02:18
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Midway MDW incident averted

FAA: Two Planes At Midway Began Takeoffs At Same Time CBS Chicago
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Old 18th Jun 2015, 02:30
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Flight numbers 1328 and 3828, hmmm.
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Old 18th Jun 2015, 02:35
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call signs too close

the call signs are too close. but an interesting read, thanks for posting.
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Old 18th Jun 2015, 04:03
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Flight numbers 1328 and 3828, hmmm.
And they way they say it, thirteen-twenty-eight and thirty-eight-twenty-eight. Hmm indeed! The pace of ops at MDW can get such that people start stepping on each others radio transmissions all too often. Is it possible that an airline pilot has to concentrate on the flight number since it changes all the time and since the company call sign is always the same, maybe some don't even hear it?

Whatever the reason, it's a cheap lesson for everyone.
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Old 18th Jun 2015, 04:43
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yes, and if we said: Flight WUN THUREE TWO EIGHT instead of thirteen twenty eight

hmmmmm
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Old 18th Jun 2015, 04:58
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Definitely not the first time similar sounding call signs have resulted in pilots executing someone else's clearance. There isn't a surefire solution to every problem, but this one requires more attention to detect than many other problems do. In my experience, ATC is usually really on the ball about issuing warnings for similar sounding call signs on the frequency, but nobody can be expected to recognize it every time. Perhaps it IS time to require all call signs to be spoken alphanumerically one character at a time. That would take some time for pilots and controllers to get used to. Seems worth talking about at least...
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Old 18th Jun 2015, 05:28
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Question

i have never understood why the FAA has not adopted the EU system of callsign modification, e.g. SWA1328 could have used the callsign SWA132H and SWA3828 could have used the callsign SWA382J. Risk reduced. I loved the callsign mod when I flew contract in Europe.
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Old 18th Jun 2015, 06:57
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Takes more readback brain power to say each digit seperately. That increases the chance of error. The letter at the end is better.
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Old 18th Jun 2015, 07:04
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Takes more readback brain power to say each digit seperately.
Really, works well all over the world, except in the USA. Does your statement describe the underlying problem?
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Old 18th Jun 2015, 07:18
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US lets you modify your call sign at will. Try It !
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Old 18th Jun 2015, 07:18
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Reading each digit separately or using letters is no guarantee either. I've had very similar and even identical callsigns of different airlines on the same frequency. One time an altitude bust was marginally avoided by an attentive controller. Perhaps if the system was a bit smarter and could update callsigns in real time when two similar sounding callsigns are about to enter the same sector.
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Old 18th Jun 2015, 08:04
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Both the ground and tower conversations are already up on LiveATC.

Before pushing back, these two flights stepped on each other's transmissions to ground. That's a clue. While still on ground frequency, ATC directly advised both flights of the similar numbers on the frequency. Both flights acknowledged.

Delta somehow started rolling even thought the takeoff clearance was for 31C and he was on 4R. I Wonder if the Delta crew every heard of a pilot named van Zanten?
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Old 18th Jun 2015, 09:17
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Herald and jacdec got the story

"garbled transmissions"...could have been a reiteration of Tenerife. What if there was fog at the time ?

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Old 18th Jun 2015, 09:43
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i have never understood why the FAA has not adopted the EU system of callsign modification, e.g. SWA1328 could have used the callsign SWA132H and SWA3828 could have used the callsign SWA382J. Risk reduced. I loved the callsign mod when I flew contract in Europe.
Good point, and while we're at it, why doesn't the FAA try to stamp out the use of slang?

"Southwest thirteen twenty-eight" and "...checking in three five oh" and "runway four" might sound cool on the radio, but it's not ICAO standard and has huge potential for a serious accident.

Oh, but don't forget to add "heavy" to your call sign when taxiing or cruising at FL370...
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Old 19th Jun 2015, 01:22
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Wonder how often this occurs. On a visit to West Palm observed an exact same event, with a Shorts 360 and Gulfstream. Both stopped prior to the intersection.
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Old 19th Jun 2015, 02:03
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Originally Posted by Bokkenrijder View Post
Good point, and while we're at it, why doesn't the FAA try to stamp out the use of slang?

"Southwest thirteen twenty-eight" and "...checking in three five oh" and "runway four" might sound cool on the radio, but it's not ICAO standard and has huge potential for a serious accident.

Oh, but don't forget to add "heavy" to your call sign when taxiing or cruising at FL370...
Actually, most SWA crews use pretty good ICAO phraseology when they fly to the Caribbean. It's just a domestic thing, I guess.

I wouldn't go as far as calling it a huge potential for a serious accident. There is never just one factor leading to an incident/accident.
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Old 19th Jun 2015, 02:45
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Good point, and while we're at it, why doesn't the FAA try to stamp out the use of slang?
The example you gave is correct in the US, group form for the callsign.
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Old 19th Jun 2015, 03:08
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Originally Posted by Bokkenrijder View Post
Good point, and while we're at it, why doesn't the FAA try to stamp out the use of slang?

"Southwest thirteen twenty-eight" and "...checking in three five oh" and "runway four" might sound cool on the radio, but it's not ICAO standard and has huge potential for a serious accident.

Oh, but don't forget to add "heavy" to your call sign when taxiing or cruising at FL370...
Like usual it did not take long for the radio pedants to ride in with their self righteous certainty about the superiority of the EU way.

The new hires at Southwest and Delta are running 4 and 5 thousand hours, but your EU LOCO with the 200 hr airline puppy mill graduate is going to be so much safer because he can talk the "right" way on the radio
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Old 19th Jun 2015, 05:12
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the group form of call sign has been around for awhile.

now,some smart computer programmer should come up with a way of assigning call signs to make sure there are no confusing elements.
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Old 19th Jun 2015, 07:41
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Am I the only one who thinks that, having been cautioned about the similar flight numbers, having actually stepped on each other which getting push-backs approved, and knowing departures were on both 31C and 4L, that the Delta pilot should have figured out that even if the flight number sounded close, he wasn't on 31C?
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