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Low Cost Carriers "CuttingCorners"!!

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Low Cost Carriers "CuttingCorners"!!

Old 28th Jun 2002, 06:02
  #101 (permalink)  
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Back in the '80s corner-cutting off-route airliners often got intercepted in the North Sea. The route of the 'Norwich Flier' often meant that it attracted our interest until we'd identified it as such! Way back a Lightning actually took the paint off a light twin who was flogging across the North Sea at night not talking to anyone....

One off-route airliner flew himself through the NOTAM'd exercise area for an air defence exercise involving communications jamming - we were closing for a visident before SOC called us on Guard to haul off....

It might seem economic sense to go off-airways, but it can expose people to the attention of others they'd probably rather avoid - although probably far less so these days!
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Old 30th Jun 2002, 13:25
  #102 (permalink)  
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From the Sunday Times:

June 30, 2002

Budget airline ‘risked safety’
Gareth Walsh

RYANAIR, the budget airline, has disobeyed instructions issued by air traffic controllers, potentially compromising the safety of its passengers, according to official safety reports.
The documents reveal how the airline’s jets have approached airports too low. Earlier this month Ryanair’s chief executive claimed that recent criticism of the carrier’s pilots was unfounded.

The reports, held by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) at Gatwick, appear to support a recent complaint by an anonymous air traffic controller to Chirp, the aviation industry’s whistleblowing service. It alleged that pilots flying for budget operators were cutting corners to save time and money.

At the time Michael O’Leary, Ryanair’s chief executive, fiercely denied any suggestion that his airline was involved, casting aside the complaint as nothing more than the “subjective, personal opinion of one individual air traffic controller”.

The CAA documents seen by The Sunday Times last week detail a series of official allegations lodged against Ryanair by air traffic controllers within the past 12 months and include:

Flying too low into airports. In two incidents jets approached 1,000ft too low.

Misleading controllers about flying at high altitudes. On more than six occasions the airline filed flight plans saying its planes were equipped to fly close to other jets at high altitude, only for the pilots to inform controllers that they were not qualified to use the equipment once they were in the air.

There have also been complaints about Ryanair pilots mixing up call signs and reacting to radio messages that were intended for other aircraft.
All the CAA reports were filed by controllers who felt the incidents could have put safety at risk if not dealt with.

Last week Ryanair denied compromising on safety. “In all airlines, including Ryanair, the principal pressure — and ‘pressure’ is a bad word — put on pilots is to ensure that safety is prioritised as their number one objective at all times,” said O’Leary.

The company added that it is working with the CAA to reduce call sign confusion, which it said is an industry-wide problem.

Ryanair also said it had an 18-year unblemished safety record and that the number of reports relating to it was significantly lower than for other airlines.

The CAA files reveal a startling range of incidents occurring in Britain’s skies affecting most airlines.

Among the most worrying are deliberate attempts to cause mayhem in the air. On two occasions reports have warned of hoax radio commands to aircraft, one successfully telling a Boeing 747 to make a left turn, and a second giving speed instructions to the crew of an American Airlines jet.

On four other occasions commercial aircraft, including a Boeing 747, have been accidentally routed through designated danger zones where military exercises were under way. In one case, four unidentified planes flew into a naval missile-firing exercise off Portsmouth.

Among the most common risks are near-misses between aircraft. One involved an easyJet crew, who took off despite having just been warned to wait while a helicopter crossed the runway.

Among the more bizarre reports to the CAA was one from an Aer Lingus crew, who encountered a freefall parachutist at 9,000ft “dead ahead at very close range” as they prepared to land.

Another was after an Air 2000 captain told air traffic controllers there were two unidentified flying objects speeding beneath their jet as it flew at 33,000ft above over Hertfordshire.
Old 30th Jun 2002, 15:30
  #103 (permalink)  
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The company added that it is working with the CAA to reduce call sign confusion, which it said is an industry-wide problem.
What a laugh!
One of the first things Ryanair did years ago on starting up in Dublin was to give all its flights the same flight numbers as the Aer Lingus aircraft departing at the same times to same destinations.

To what end I don't know....perhaps to confuse the travel agents? Or maybe just another manifestation of the pathetic game of oneupmanship that O'Leary loves so much.

The really risible bit is that Ryanair still continue to use the 'poached' flight numbers while ALT have had to add a letter suffix onto their callsigns to avoid r/t confusion.

Yes, petty isn't it. I quite agree.
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Old 30th Jun 2002, 20:42
  #104 (permalink)  
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BEagle - I believe the pilot of the intercepted Aztec was killed by the collision, which, I think was in cloud.
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Old 1st Jul 2002, 11:32
  #105 (permalink)  
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If he was killed I was offered a job by his ghost at Humberside in the mid eighties, the ghost told me all about it.

Can't remember the chaps name but it was for a C310 job.
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Old 1st Jul 2002, 11:47
  #106 (permalink)  
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I presume he does most of his haunting at Binbrook?:o
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Old 1st Jul 2002, 19:18
  #107 (permalink)  
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This looks like another aviation story by a writer who knows nothing about the story. Go arounds are common. The story would be better if the writer said that the pilots refused to go around because that takes time and fuel. Ever try and slowdown early going into Chicago. Going fast to the marker is required.
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Old 6th Jul 2002, 09:02
  #108 (permalink)  
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Back to the original dangerous corners - following their cutting of some fares, BA's head of Global Distribution was reported in last Wednesday's Financial Times as saying that to save money BA would be "flying our aircraft harder and faster". That was distinctly 'flying', not groundwork.

Can you fly aircraft harder or even faster (than at present)? Any one noticed any differences up there ?
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Old 6th Jul 2002, 14:03
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