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Smartwings B738 over Aegean Sea on Aug 22nd 2019

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Smartwings B738 over Aegean Sea on Aug 22nd 2019

Old 3rd Aug 2020, 14:03
  #161 (permalink)  

Only half a speed-brake
 
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The EASA regulations do not really tell you how to think and act, more accurately described they are technical specifications what needs to be achieved and complied with. In this particular aspect, for Land ASAP, the US FARs go a step further and do instruct the PIC to land at the nearest workable place in the terms of time. In a sense, their law is more evolved (speculation why and how it came to be is irrelevant).

I do not see any grounds to say the TRE was right in Uplinker's story(*), BTW. Interpreting Land ASAP as "the nearest possible by great circle distance" is another apex of the pendulum, wrong too. For the record, on the opposite upswing this sorry soul also thinks the Norwegian crew that ended OEI in Iran did not have the grounds to continue to KWI, even if their particular choice of runway may seem somewhat rushed in hindsight from the office desk.

(*) well, if perhaps it took 10 minutes longer to reach ATH compared to something really nice like RDS (3000 m) then yes. But even then it's not the decision process which was faulty, rather the awareness of what's where.
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Old 3rd Aug 2020, 14:10
  #162 (permalink)  
 
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This brings me back to the old chestnut. The EASA regulations for non-ETOPS flights continue to be interpreted by some airlines as requiring the weather at ERAs to be checked (whatever that means) and then promptly ignored at the planning stage.

Haven’t read the entire thread though, and not saying that this was a factor in this case.


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Old 3rd Aug 2020, 14:31
  #163 (permalink)  

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? The rules for ERAs are rather clear and do not allow any such thing. Hunch is there what you have in mind is not ERAs by the definition but rather the required adequate aerodromes (max planning distance equivalent of 60 mins LRC as agreed with the CAA and put into OM part B). And for those, the rules are rather clear too. If someone wants to be more stringent and then not, it's all for the show, it's their choice.

Agreed it is not relevant to the thread.

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Old 4th Aug 2020, 09:27
  #164 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Uplinker View Post
...and had to make a decision since we did not have a lot of spare fuel...
I know it was only a sim scenario, but out of pure curiosity, where on earth were you heading to with a 330 over the Greek islands if a diversion and missed approach to Athens would have put you low on fuel... ?!
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Old 4th Aug 2020, 09:41
  #165 (permalink)  
 
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Yes, I cannot remember now what the exact circumstances were but we probably had a fuel leak which necessitated shutting the leaky engine down and left us with very little fuel. I do remember thinking that if we attempted a landing on the island but had to go around, we would not have had enough fuel to go anywhere else, hence my desire to go somewhere with more options in the first place.

Not saying for a minute that this applies to Smartwings, just offering an example of when flying away from the nearest runway was a valid decision, (maybe).
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Old 4th Aug 2020, 09:58
  #166 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by FlightDetent View Post
something really nice like RDS (3000 m)
I think you mean RHO (Rhodos).
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Old 5th Aug 2020, 19:07
  #167 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Uplinker View Post
...just offering an example of when flying away from the nearest runway was a valid decision, (maybe).
For what it's worth, and also with a little first-hand knowledge of the Greek island airports (rule#1 - the wind is always perpendicular to the only available runway), I would probably have made the same decision.
(provided we're speaking of the new Athens airport - were it in the good old Hellinikon days, would not have made much of a difference)
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Old 28th Nov 2020, 20:21
  #168 (permalink)  
 
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Final report officially available in English now (UZPLN)

https://uzpln.cz/pdf/20201127100923.pdf

Smartwings is still in Business? The criminal prosecution without result after 1 year? (Haven't read anything since). That particular Captain still flying and having business with the airline? I hope they take the same final route as Go2Sky did!
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Old 28th Nov 2020, 21:12
  #169 (permalink)  
 
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Certainly, the incident report can't recommend punitive action. But this is the first time I've seen a report recommend a psychological evaluation of the captain involved.
​​​​​​
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Old 29th Nov 2020, 06:26
  #170 (permalink)  
 
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once in the SIM, I was PF when we had an engine failure in the cruise whilst somewhere over the Greek islands. I elected - and my Cap agreed - to fly to Athens rather than land on one of said islands............The TRE criticised my decision to go to Athens in the de-brief, and no doubt he was right, but I think my reasons were also valid
Contained within the report, I'll fly with you Uplinker based on the context of your post rather than the TRE
In selecting the nearest suitable airport, the pilot-in-command should consider the suitability of nearby airports in terms of facilities and weather and their proximity to the airplane position. The pilot-in-command may determine, based on the nature of the situation and an examination of the relevant factors, that the safest course of action is to divert to a more distant airport than the nearest airport. For example, there is not necessarily a requirement to spiral down to the airport nearest the airplane's present position if, in the judgment of the pilot-in-command, it would require equal or less time to continue to another nearby airport
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Old 29th Nov 2020, 08:54
  #171 (permalink)  

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It seems that if you are well connected you are fairly bullet proof from being fired.
A bit like the “Barnard Castle” scenario.
They all piss in the same pot.
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Old 29th Nov 2020, 10:30
  #172 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Uplinker View Post
The TRE criticised my decision to go to Athens in the de-brief, and no doubt he was right, but I think my reasons were also valid, I thought that had I attempted to land an A330 on one of the shorter Greek island strips I might have embarrassed myself.
These few words show an ineffective debriefing from your TRE (and hence a big learning occasion loss) for the following reasons :

- He could not pass over his point to you with your acknowledgment.
- Given the above he did not have enough arguments, suggesting your decision was also correct in the same exact way.
- a TRE must never criticize, he/she records a performance, decides based on what he has recorded and debriefs. The debriefing must be full of training elements, otherwise it goes in the trash.
In Your case the only thing he could have done -unless your decision was clearly unsafe- was to show you how to improve it (if it’s the case). Worst thing you can do as a TRE is to think “I would have landed at XXX” and debrief with your pre-conceived idea.
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Old 29th Nov 2020, 10:39
  #173 (permalink)  
 
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Thank you megan and sonicbum, very kind.

Maybe I am a better pilot than I thought
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Old 29th Nov 2020, 11:19
  #174 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by DingerX View Post
Certainly, the incident report can't recommend punitive action. But this is the first time I've seen a report recommend a psychological evaluation of the captain involved.
​​​​​​
The PIC of the reported flight clearly would need a serious amount of re-training and independent evaluation of his capabilities to continue in flight operations in the capacity as PIC. There are so many findings in that report - that a "one mistake" or "poor judgement" has to be ruled out. There is a clear deep rooted attitude problem - particularly considering that the individual also held a valid FI rating.
I'd be curious to know what Smartwings have actually done with the PIC in question in order to get him back on the line to operate or if he was removed from all duties. Just to know what type of company culture SmartWings has.

Last edited by Klimax; 29th Nov 2020 at 16:15.
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Old 30th Nov 2020, 09:16
  #175 (permalink)  
 
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Uplinker

You're welcome.
Confidence building after every single sim session is the key for a good instructor/examiner
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Old 30th Nov 2020, 16:58
  #176 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Klimax View Post
Just to know what type of company culture SmartWings has.
In short, test the limit of every rule to pinch a penny, adopt it as practice if able to get away with it, and deny everything if found out. The report is a laugh. It is obvious that the decision to continue was willfully made to save the additional costs, both direct and consequential, of landing at an alternate (which would be a criminal offense if so stated). The PIC was the Responsible Manager controlling all flight ops. Go figure...
Would never ever set foot on one of their aircraft (and that includes CSA now, since it had been acquired by the SW group).

On a different note, does anybody know what happened to the 49% share of CEFC (China Energy) in SmartWings after CEFC went bankrupt earlier this year ?
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Old 30th Nov 2020, 17:38
  #177 (permalink)  
 
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Klimax

(pax) The report does question 'attitude' doesn't it in so far as,

'• It cannot be satisfactorily proven, nor reliably excluded that the decision making of the aircraft Pilot-in-command and at the same time the Flight Manager of the company, was influenced by the financial aspects of the occurred situation as described in Clause 2.11.'
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Old 1st Dec 2020, 08:32
  #178 (permalink)  

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But on the balance of probabilities (civil proof) influenced by the financial considerations, I would suggest.
“Beyond reasonable doubt” (criminal proof), in other words certain, a higher bar to overcome.
Suspicion Yes......another ‘abnormality of the mind’ similar to PIA 8303. This time Swartwings got away with it.
There is enough material here for a 2 day CRM conference, never mind the Trick Cyclists
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Old 1st Dec 2020, 16:43
  #179 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Mr Optimistic View Post
It cannot be satisfactorily proven, nor reliably excluded that the decision making of the aircraft Pilot-in-command and at the same time the Flight Manager of the company, was influenced by the financial aspects of the occurred situation as described in Clause 2.11.
The report states the obvious, but as correctly pointed out above, criminal proof requires evidence beyond reasonable doubt, and as long as the only two people who are in a position to give evidence collude, there is no proof. However the report stops here, and this is my main issue. Again the report only hints, but does not expressly say, that there are only two reasonable explanations. Either it was a willful action, agreed to (even if implicitly) by both pilots, or mental incapacitation rendering the PIC unfit to fly (but then the question begs why PM did not intervene). However the PIC is question was the Responsible Manager overseeing flight operations, and as such having a responsiblity for procedures to ensure that no person unfit to fly ever does so... A RM continuing to permit an unsafe situation / practice once having become aware of is also a criminal offense...


Last edited by andrasz; 2nd Dec 2020 at 22:07.
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Old 2nd Dec 2020, 01:57
  #180 (permalink)  
 
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Thing is that the organisation concluded the report (Czech Air Investigation Institute), is a body reporting to the Czech CAA, which granted the post holder status to the person in question.
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