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LHR ramp check on a US major

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LHR ramp check on a US major

Old 16th Mar 2016, 03:02
  #21 (permalink)  
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Thanks for the responses. I was wondering if the FAA (Friendly Aviation Agency) was pulling similar stiunts on foreign carriers. I have had many line checks and ramp checks in my career but I have never had anything like the ramp check described. Corporate guys do get the rubber glove treatment from what I read but I did not think this was normal for an air carrier inspection. Usually it's just logbook, license and registration and a glance at the release to see if you had any MELs.

My issue with this would be that I just arrived from flying all night, I'm ready to go to the hotel and nap, and some azzhat wants me to demo aircraft systems and calculate duty time. I don't calculate anything at 8 am after flying all night except the time needed to hit the bunk.
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Old 16th Mar 2016, 12:18
  #22 (permalink)  
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LHR or LGW - it's ALWAYS like that.... always delay!!!
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Old 16th Mar 2016, 14:37
  #23 (permalink)  
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We were ramp inspected at CDG years ago. They were very pleasant but I felt they were there to find something, which they did on the walk around, which was very obscure and something a line pilot was not expected to check. We were delayed about :45 minutes.

It is ramp inspection not a line check. You inspect on an inspection. I would not subject myself nor my crew to an oral from someone who is not licensed to conduct such an oral.
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Old 16th Mar 2016, 14:47
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What? You need a licence for that these days
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Old 16th Mar 2016, 16:08
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Hi guys,

Just to make clear, a SAFA/SACA inspector is NOT ALLOWED to ask any system, SOP or operational questions to any crewmember.

They also MUST NOT delay the flight except for safety reasons.

Otherwise, be co÷perative, friendly, offer them a coffee, and sign their document.
Signing de Inspection finding document does NOT mean that you agree, but merely is a signature that you received the document.
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Old 16th Mar 2016, 19:22
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I have been checked many times. Locations include NUE, FRA, BRE, HEL, FLR (three times, twice by the same guy), NCL, and BRU. With the exception of BRU, every single check was efficient, to the point and conducted by professionals who knew what they were looking for and when in doubt asked questions. It was a pleasure to have them. But the guy in BRU was a plonker. He wanted to know why we didn't perform fuel checks at every waypoint on the listed on the flight plan (AMS - BRU, 19 minute flight). I told him that he was clearly not qualified to check us and told him to p!ss off. And he did. Never heard another word.

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Old 17th Mar 2016, 00:37
  #27 (permalink)  
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Forty odd years and never got checked once! Lucky me, some poor so and so probably got done a dozen times in lieu!

When a thorough ramp check takes place the word gets around the company fast and it is an opportunity for everyone to make sure all their documentation and amendments are up to date. No harm done.

Friend used to be an inspector, if a licence was wrong, medical out of date then the crew would be affected, otherwise everything else wrong would be taken up with the company.
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Old 17th Mar 2016, 04:00
  #28 (permalink)  
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Complete check by FAA in Las Vegas ... All documentation, cockpit crew by FAA flight operation personnel, cabin crew by FAA cabin inspectors and all aircraft documentation by FAA maintenance inspectors and they also completed a external check of the aircraft I was informed Although a foreign registered aircraft we do carry America citizens in USA airspace ..... Totally ageed with the inspector ...
Also inspected by Swiss CAA as the aircraft which I had landed had never flown in Swiss airspacee... This was all completed having also flown on a long transatlantic night flight ....
While flying in a countries airspace I abide by their air regulations no matter where the aircraft is registered ......I am the visitor ...... Their Ball
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Old 17th Mar 2016, 11:15
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I was asked questions on duty time limitations and going into discretion by a couple of inspectors in the crew room while they were conducting an audit. The F/O chose a table next to the one they were using when he arrived for work ahead of me.
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Old 18th Mar 2016, 01:13
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JCAB is thorough all right. We have turns and last time my Captain at the time could hardly be bothered. Showed his docs then off to lunch and ciggies with the girls. Myself left to entertain about 4 inspectors. (Including going down to the ramp to retrieve the cockpit trash bag all paperwork suitably binned and coffee soaked upon block in).

I don't remember anybody bringing me anything from Lawson's either and I went hungry!
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Old 18th Mar 2016, 04:40
  #31 (permalink)  
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SAFA Inspections

SAFA inspections are required by ICAO through ICAO Doc 8335 and standards of ICAO Annex 1, 6 and 8. There are 54 inspection items included in the check, furthermore; not all 54 items need to be checked if time is a factor. It is not the policy to delay a flight nor is it policy to delay boarding of the flight or the disembarking of a flight.

Nor is it the policy to ask questions on the operators procedures or anything that gets into SOPs. That is left up to the State of Oversight of the Operator.

Many operators are utilizing EFBs to hold their aircraft documentation. Some SAFA Inspectors have difficulties with this one however; there is no 'Standard' by ICAO on how documents must be presented. To clarify, the documents (AOC-OPS Specs etc) can be electronically held. The EASA ramp inspection program actually has instructions clearly giving inspectors guidance on documents.

One part of the check is to determine the Version of TAWS and TCAS. On many newer aircraft , there is actually no way for the flight crew to determine this because there is no test function. Inspectors are not in a position to request flight crews to provide evidence of the versions if it is actually a maintenance function. In such a case, as a flight crew member, you can argue this point successfully.

One item that regularly creates problems on inspections are crews who show up with no license or medical. These innocuous pieces of paper are required to be in your possession however; depending on how efficiently your company works, a quick phone call and documents sent via email and printed, can be the difference between going out on schedule or taking a delay. And yes, you are required to have a second pair of reading glasses available, if required on your medical.

The technical inspection can get detailed. Missing fasteners on leading edges of panels are one source of findings. As a flight crew member, not much you can do about that one, except to write it up in the tech log, if you see it on a walk-around and let your maintenance department get the work done.

You can get the latest information on SAFA here. Most States who have signed the ICAO Chicago Convention, use this material as their base.
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Old 18th Mar 2016, 09:15
  #32 (permalink)  
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I had a very similar ramp check to the original poster's experience, by the CDAG in Toulouse. It's my first one under EASA, so perhaps there are new requirements to be followed.
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Old 18th Mar 2016, 11:08
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I've been checked once in nearly thirty years for the spare pair of glasses, company line check rather than a ramp check. Didn't check that the prescription was the same as the pair I was using though, which I assume would be beyond his capabilities.
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Old 18th Mar 2016, 13:37
  #34 (permalink)  
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Why should ramp checkers be offered coffee ?

I have never done that and I never will nor have I had any major problems with any of the inspectors. I'm not impolite or not co-operating but I'm there to do my job and my contract no way in hell include pouring coffee for some wannabe yellow vests asking my license and spare glasses after a 13 hour work day.

Especially not in Nice or Bordeaux, France.
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Old 18th Mar 2016, 15:50
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Be nice & ask them if they wish to delay the flt. If on a turn around. If they say no carry on what you were doing eg loading the fmc. If they then start to ask more or ask for docs ask the same question & add for flight safety reasons you should not be distracted carrying out flight required tasks. So when they say ok we delay the flight stop what you were doing & give them un divided attention.
Works every time but be nice & you'll find they won't be asking questions as they have to explain the reason for the flt delay.
& yes they are only doing their job but it should not mean distracting you from a flight related task.
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Old 18th Mar 2016, 16:04
  #36 (permalink)  
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Do unto others..................
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