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Change needed in North American ATC

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Change needed in North American ATC

Old 5th Jan 2016, 16:50
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Change needed in North American ATC

After reading about the recent Alaska Airlines Taxiway Tango incident in KSEA, a few issues came to mind.


I have flown for years under the EASA license in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. I have also flow airliners for years in North America with the FAA license. I am a dual citizen and I have been afforded the opportunity to learn from different ATCs around the world.


To be quite honest, I am a bit concerned with the N. American ATC and its refusal to adapt to ICAO practices and standards. I always get a laugh when going into KLAX and there are several aircraft lined up on final and the controller says in a rushed manner, "ok you are number 3 and your following a B737 which is on a base turn at your 2'oclock position and you are cleared to land. I'm sorry, but this is simply amateur and asking for a serious accident in the future. It seems like you can be 30 miles from the airport and number 15 to land and they will issue a landing clearance. This combined with a culture of "unload the liability" onto the pilot by constantly "HARASSING" them about calling the preceding aircraft in order to dump a visual approach onto the pilot is ridiculous. How is it that an airport such as Frankfurt which handles an immense number of airplanes in often sub-par weather, can be so much more professional and efficient than let's say, San Francisco....even on a clear day?
Back to the Alaska Airlines Tango incident; I am going to level half the blame with the amateur ATC in this part of the world. Some of you may ask yourselves, "well how could the ATC there be worse than a typical African ATC." The answer is quite simple, in Africa there is often no radar and the pilot is following exact prescribed routes via the Jeppesen approach chart, coupled with a common frequency where the pilots are speaking to one another. In America, the ATC is often the biggest threat by directing air traffic in an unsafe and unprofessional manner.
I am not nationalistic toward any side of the Atlantic, I am simply calling it how I see it.
Major ATCs of the world are in dire need of an learning exchange program. I am certain there are positive techniques that could be learned from each culture. North America's refusal to adapt to more professional and safe practices will unfortunately cause more incidents/accidents in the future. The American controllers really need to spend a year split between London and Frankfurt to gain valuable knowledge on how to operate a large volume of traffic in often congested airspace.
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Old 5th Jan 2016, 17:32
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The American controllers really need to spend a year split between London and Frankfurt to gain valuable knowledge on how to operate a large volume of traffic in often congested airspace.

huh??
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Old 5th Jan 2016, 17:43
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I have absolutely no gripe with any of the ATC units (east of 30W and W of 30W) mentioned. When I used to operate over there I could only marvel at the ability of the unit concerned that managed to keep New York airspace running. Breathing seemed to be an option for those controllers.
IF you listen to the controller then it is usually pretty clear (wherever in the world they are from) what they would like you to do.
This thread will now predictably degenerate into a USA v Rest of the World slanging match so I thought I would get in early.

Keep up the good work.
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Old 5th Jan 2016, 17:54
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I make no observation as to which system trains to the appropriate level but it is no secret that EASA training is normally to a greater depth and breadth than FAA training. EASA students did not have the luxury of a question bank for their licencing exams

This is very apparent with ATC communication and RT phraseology when you compare USA with Europe.

Before my American peers 'lock and load', much of what we had to learn was utterly useless bollocks as well!!

(Again for my American peers...bollock is an english word for testicle.)
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Old 5th Jan 2016, 17:54
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qUadform,

lurkio, “… marvel at the ability of the unit concerned that managed to keep New York airspace running.
Perhaps you should consider if it safe to keep on managing in that manner; just because it is successful doesn’t imply safety now or at some future point, just as being lucky is not safe.

If this thread does become US vs etc, then perhaps the views of why the US deviates from ICAO could be explained, and whether the US has filed a deviation from ICAO – with their justification.
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Old 5th Jan 2016, 18:31
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One size does not fit all.

Of the 10 busiest airports in the world (by aircraft movements), 8 are in the US:

1 ATLANTA GA, US (ATL)
2 CHICAGO IL, US (ORD)
3 DALLAS/FORT WORTH TX, US (DFW)
4 LOS ANGELES CA, US (LAX)
5 BEIJING, CN (PEK)
6 CHARLOTTE NC, US (CLT)
7 DENVER CO, US (DEN)
8 LAS VEGAS NV, US (LAS)
9 HOUSTON TX, US (IAH)
10 LONDON, GB (LHR)

Many US procedures have been / are being adopted by ICAO and vice versa.
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Old 5th Jan 2016, 19:06
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When you look at the numbers of accidents and incidents related to ATC globally in the world the facts just don't support planes falling from the skies on any of the continents.

If you want to make a case about ATC then English proficiency is probably far more a barrier to safety then deviating from some ICAO specified verbiage.

OP next time you are in the US drop me a PM and be happy to buy you a drink and give you a hug.
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Old 5th Jan 2016, 19:30
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How many of you so-called traffic control "experts" are willing to try doing half as good a job as the controllers now do?

How many of you commercial pilots would be able to function the extended stress of constant and consistent vigilance AC controllers function under. Their job is not to spend the first hour checking and taking off (at a rather easy pace and stress level) then swithcing on the 'auto pilot' and sipping coffee while monitoring instruments While the set for hours monitoring screens with constant moving objects threaten to play pong if they make a mistake. You have responsibility for your plane and it's passengers. They and all of your planes and passengers on their shoulders.

Are they perfect, not by a long shot.
But are you?
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Old 5th Jan 2016, 20:41
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Back in 1943 the RAF could put 1000 airplanes over a position in one twenty minute period, night IMC, no lights no talking everyone jinking and swerving to throw of the other guys aim and
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Old 5th Jan 2016, 21:11
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Doyll...not sure where you fit into the pattern here.You state in an earlier thread that you're no pilot.Are you ATC? If so you are unlike myself or any of my colleagues...we have a better grip on the job our flightcrew chums do along with a knowledge of their responsibilities and a high level of respect for that.


If you are involved in Air Traffic I would be interested to know where and what as.I'll also disassociate myself from your comments if you don't mind.
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Old 5th Jan 2016, 21:31
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I am going to level half the blame with the amateur ATC in this part of the world.
I think you are nuts! If it's VFR and I land on the wrong runway/taxiway it's my fault.
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Old 5th Jan 2016, 21:38
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How is it that an airport such as Frankfurt which handles an immense number of airplanes in often sub-par weather, can be so much more professional and efficient than let's say, San Francisco....even on a clear day?

Of the 10 busiest airports in the world (by aircraft movements), 8 are in the US:

1 ATLANTA GA, US (ATL)
2 CHICAGO IL, US (ORD)
3 DALLAS/FORT WORTH TX, US (DFW)
4 LOS ANGELES CA, US (LAX)
5 BEIJING, CN (PEK)
6 CHARLOTTE NC, US (CLT)
7 DENVER CO, US (DEN)
8 LAS VEGAS NV, US (LAS)
9 HOUSTON TX, US (IAH)
10 LONDON, GB (LHR)

Many US procedures have been / are being adopted by ICAO and vice versa.

Where is Frankfurt on this list?
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Old 5th Jan 2016, 21:40
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Where is San Francisco?
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Old 5th Jan 2016, 21:45
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Utter Rubbish.
Didn't an EASA flight just land in the wrong spot in Pisa?
N Americans not only invented powered flight but also developed most of the technology used today for ATC.
Recently we have fallen back in the tech realm but due only to politics from our friends on the socialist side of the aisle.
In Sep 11 2001 the N American ATC miraculously performed a never rehearsed much less conceived effort to land all flying traffic safely in a matter of minutes.
N Americans work as a team to seperate traffic (ATC and pilots) which enhances safety. Burdening the controller without any justification to do so is immature and unprofessional.
By all means if you don't see traffic or don't feel you can maintain contact then refuse the liability. Otherwise just do your flying where traffic doesn't alarm you.
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Old 5th Jan 2016, 21:49
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Originally Posted by Chesty Morgan View Post
Where is San Francisco?
Chesty his point being 8 of 10 busiest aerodromes are in the US.
Perhaps that achievement is empirically supportive of the fact that N American ATC can do what few others in the world can do.
I don't know
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Old 5th Jan 2016, 21:57
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2014 By Aircraft Movement


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...raft_movements

FRANKFURT 12

SFO 16
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Old 5th Jan 2016, 21:58
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Never mind, facts posted above.
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Old 5th Jan 2016, 21:58
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Yes I get his point but the comparison was between Frankfurt and San Francisco.
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Old 5th Jan 2016, 22:04
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Originally Posted by Chesty Morgan View Post
Yes I get his point but the comparison was between Frankfurt and San Francisco.
How about the comparison between Frankfurt and ORD, ALT, DFW or LAX?

Aircraft movment ORD 881,933

Aircraft movement EDDF 469,026
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Old 5th Jan 2016, 22:06
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He pulled SFO out of his arse

From his thread title, he is criticizing all North American ATC.
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