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Shamrock A330 and New York tracon run-in

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Shamrock A330 and New York tracon run-in

Old 25th Jul 2018, 01:27
  #21 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Ireland
Posts: 2
Controller here (not in the US).

I donít have any weather overlay on my screen, I rely on pilots telling me what they need to remain clear in order to provide safe clearances that flight crew are willing to follow.

Fair play to Shamrock crew saying no to a clearance they werenít happy with.

They do look like ďpunishment vectorsĒ to me, but even if we take the controller at his word that he needs to hold Shamrock to co-ordinate an alternative routing, the controllerís immediate jump to angry lecture in response to a perfectly reasonable ďunableĒ from the crew seems very unprofessional.
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Old 25th Jul 2018, 06:56
  #22 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Uk
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I’ve had similar there when avoiding wx, they couldn’t detect.

just sums up NY and NY ATC. Rude aggressive, confrontational.

i have to tell the new FOs to stand their ground and not be bulldozed by this lot .
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Old 25th Jul 2018, 08:35
  #23 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 1999
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@svhar, the AA587 accident was caused by the inappropriate actions of a pilot to the wake turbulence event.

He stomped on the rudder pedals to such an extent that the sideways load exceeded the limits of the vertical stabiliser attachments.

As for this little ATC/Pilot dialogue, these things happen, but as an ex ATC, I'll side with the Irish this time.
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Old 25th Jul 2018, 09:06
  #24 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: Oztrailia
Posts: 2,780
Pathetic controlling, NY ATC should compensate Air Lingus for the wasted vectors costing fuel.

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Old 25th Jul 2018, 09:31
  #25 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Netherlands
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Pilot's did exactly what they had to do and the pilot handled it very well by keeping his cool on the radio towards the end
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Old 25th Jul 2018, 09:44
  #26 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2014
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The comment “ you got yourself into this” was unprofessional. That’s that. One party was professional, the other party was unprofessional. Simple.
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Old 25th Jul 2018, 10:17
  #27 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by 73qanda View Post
The comment ď you got yourself into thisĒ was unprofessional. Thatís that. One party was professional, the other party was unprofessional. Simple.
Iím ATC and I agree 100% with this. Crew did the right thing.
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Old 25th Jul 2018, 10:58
  #28 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2014
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I listen to the NY TRACON quite a lot and this guy is very hectic and not always professional. I understand the workload and all that, but still, you have to keep your cool and be professional in a hostile environment like that.

This controller doesn't represent the TRACON as a whole, there are many good controllers over there!
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Old 25th Jul 2018, 12:10
  #29 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: United Kingdom
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I have flown into and out of JFK quite a bit and generally the controllers do a good job of moving a lot of aircraft without delays. This controller was probably limited with the options available to him due airspace restrictions. However the controller says "you're gonna turn right to a heading of 080" which is confusing because he should either say "turn right now heading 080" or I will be turning you shortly to 080". Not surprisingly the Shamrock queries whether he has to turn to which the controller replies "You have to follow to Greki that is right underneath you" . That response is of no help at all so it is no surprise that the Shamrock pilot yet again has to query the instruction and the controller then gives an intelligible reply.

I have no doubt the controller could have been clearer but I have sympathy for both sides as the controller might have just been trying to fit him in with subsequent departures and the controller's instructions may not have been as penal as they came across as. To me the controller is stressed due to the pressure of his job and not directly angry with the pilot.
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Old 25th Jul 2018, 12:32
  #30 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: FL, USA
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Iíll be the devils advocate and side with the controller.
This is JFK and youíre completely messing up his flow.
Other headings would have been possible.
Negotiate before you pick a fight.
Turn 080
Unable how about 120?
Turn 120

Problem solved.
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Old 25th Jul 2018, 13:57
  #31 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: London
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6 of one and half a dozen of the other.
but if the weather was that bad Iíd be tempted to stop all departures or at least put a big MDI on.

i appreciate the Ďcaptain is ultimate authorityí and Ďtale wagging the dogí type responses above but itís not just about the one aircraft, itís the sector, the airfield, even the whole network and there is a small but significant section of the pilot community that think they can take any weather avoidance without a significant knock on effect to their colleagues.

Iím not saying thatís what happened here but when say, one out of five aircraft avoid while the other four (in front and behind) fly straight through, it does make me sorry there isnít more standard pilot training for weather avoidance.
It would make a huge difference to weather delays and flight safety.
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Old 25th Jul 2018, 14:34
  #32 (permalink)  
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Delprado, Delta flight 191 of 1985 showed that convective weather that was traversable by the preceding aircraft rapidly became deadly for a wide body three miles in trail.
Assuming that it is acceptable because some aircraft had flown the route, and we do not know how long before that was, is not a good strategy when there is significant convective weather.The US NWS give the life cycle of a thunderstorm as thirty minutes. The previous aircraft may have seen it whilst it was still building as cummulus, and not the weather shamrock saw.
I believe that a groundstop was put in place after the event.
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Old 25th Jul 2018, 14:36
  #33 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2007
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"Standard pilot training for weather avoidance". How do you account for the variations in radar equipment and what they show. Experience is a huge factor as well. Reading a radar display has a lot of subleties.
Maybe lets start with some standardized atc around the world. If the SID is runway heading, and you require a 90 degree turn off of that through an area of weather, maybe a heads up through the tower to your departures. We're not mind readers, and when you point us at an area of weather with no advance warning, then a cautious man should hesitate. Maybe the previous 5 went through and regretted it. I know I've done that in the past. Lived to tell the tale.
Yelling won't fix your mistakes, and creates an unsafe scenario.
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Old 25th Jul 2018, 16:14
  #34 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by UNIFO View Post
Point of view from an ATCO working in a very restrictive airspace: If all other planes (preceding + following) can route along a particular path, I will tell the pilot everyone else has taken the heading except you.
From an psychological standpoint (CRM and all that stuff) Iīd say that this is not the best possible thing to do. IMHO.
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Old 25th Jul 2018, 18:22
  #35 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2004
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Whenever WX avoidance gets discussed a lot of the pilot community view their right to weather avoid as sacrosanct and purely a matter of extreme flight safety.
However there are a (small but significant) group of pilots that want to avoid the slightest bump for passenger comfort. When the sector is quiet Iíll do my upmost to accommodate that but in my experience pilots still ask for the Ďcomfortí avoidance when itís too busy.
As someone said above, itís a matter of experience, and thatís also true from the ATC side. Itís pretty easy to judge (to a high degree of certainty) what requests are for comfort and what ones are for safety with a little experience and I donít think the requests are always made with enough consideration to business of sector or consequences to the network and therefore delays to other flights.

And Iím not having a go at the pilots in this incident with those comments.

As for standardising training for pilots, Iíve had three aircraft on top of each other 1000í apart approaching weather. One requests left 10, the next 15 right and the third says nothing. Surely itís best to all do the same thing, even if in the captainís view itís the less good (2nd) option?
Standardisation of RT requests would help too.

ĒRequest 10 Right/Left for weather.Ē Is great.

Ēthereís a little bit of a build up about 8 miles ahead, will you be turning us before then? And if not could we have 10 right now otherwise weíll have to go 25 left and round it from the other side?Ē
Add in the callsign and the ums and ahs and each aircraft on the frequency has moved the best part of a mile in the time taken to say all that. At best thatís the spacing missed, possibly another aircraft is 1 mile closer to his weather or Iím a mile late in giving avoiding action because someone has turned without asking/telling.

Iím sure there are many more examples but then the vast majority of pilots reading are already very good at this stuff, itís just that itís not trickling down and a bit more training and standardisation could help us all.

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Old 25th Jul 2018, 18:53
  #36 (permalink)  
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Location: USA
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Input from a colleague of the controller in question.

In my opinion, the controller could've handled it a bit better, and the pilot couldn't realistically expect to fly runway heading for 15 miles in NYC.
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Old 25th Jul 2018, 19:17
  #37 (permalink)  
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Even in busy NYC airspace if an avoid for weather is needed, in the opinion of the aircraft commander, then a deviation is required. ATC here were maxed out and were annoyed that his plan did not match the view of the person legally responsible for the safe conduct of the flight and the lives of those onboard.

Pilots do know that weather avoids make ATC work harder so donít tend to ask for them ďjust becauseĒ. I have sat at the end of the runway looking at a massive cell 2miles off the end of the runway and declined to depart. A local lo co did depart with an immediate sharp turn, he avoided the weather. I was not prepared to risk the lives of my passengers in a wide body, he was in his 737. We were both correct and ATC can go hang if they disagree - itís not their lives on the line.

ATC here were out of order and need to rethink - but we can all get like that when we are up to arse in alligators. Maybe a little review and rethinking is required - nobody needs the atttude. The end result was safe, ATC got stressed as they ran out out capacity, itís not the end of the world, we are all human.
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Old 25th Jul 2018, 21:41
  #38 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2007
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Overall I give the NY controllers a good grade. Like Shamrock they have gotten pissed off with me not accepting a heading with rapidly developing weather. I just tell them unable offer a suggested heading but both times issued holding. As the PIC I am not flying into a level 5 cell even if its low level crap.
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Old 25th Jul 2018, 21:58
  #39 (permalink)  
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There is a lot of truth in what Del Prado has to say.
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Old 26th Jul 2018, 12:47
  #40 (permalink)  
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"As for standardising training for pilots, I’ve had three aircraft on top of each other 1000’ apart approaching weather. One requests left 10, the next 15 right and the third says nothing. Surely it’s best to all do the same thing, even if in the captain’s view it’s the less good (2nd) option?"

Standard training for pilots for weather would be fine if there was standard weather. It does't work like that. Cells shapes are often very irregular and very dynamic in that they can grow rapidly, in different directions, right in front of your eyes. Interpreting these shapes visually can lead to different decisions and this can all happen quickly. You can fly through a 40,000' CB without a ripple and get absolutely battered by an 8,000' cell. Equally you can make a judgment call, with the best intentions and need to change it a minute later.

The following video is obviously not in real time but you can get the idea why sequential flights might want different courses:


In an ideal world pilots would be able to make early decisions and pass these promptly to ATC and everyone could come up with a timely, workable, agreed plan. But there are days where that just doesn't work.

Regarding the weather radar, manufacturers and subsequently many aviation authorities overestimate the accuracy of their products. While they are very useful tools, and they have improved slowly over the years, they should not be relied upon exclusively. The resolution used for aviation weather radars is only really useful for rain and wet snow. Even on max settings they are very poor at detecting dry hail or any icing. As has been pointed out here, and it in the US AIM, ATC wx radars do not show turbulence but most aircraft radars do. These can also pretty poor as they frequently lead you happily down a path and then suddenly give a strong indication of turbulence right in front of you. Very often when your eyes get a clear view of the weather you will reject what the radar is showing you. Experience in these scenarios is invaluable.

Also, some people here seem to forget that there are passengers on board. The bigger the aircraft, the more nervous passengers you are likely to have on board and they can really freak out in the turbulence associated with flying into a cell. While pilots, cabin crew and most passengers will be fine with the roller coaster ride, crews have to think of their customers. Imagine throwing a medical emergency, due to anxiety or whatever, into the mix in that recording!

Finally, I must compliment the NY ATC people as usually they are excellent in assisting with bad weather requests. But personally I would be disappointed with the service in that recording.
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