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PIA A320 Crash Karachi

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PIA A320 Crash Karachi

Old 12th Jun 2020, 10:52
  #1181 (permalink)  
 
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If I were an ATC controller watching a supposedly routine flight flaring gear up afew feet above the runway, I couldn't help yelling on the radio in order to warn the crew of the situation. "XXXX Go around !!" could be the first sentence coming into my mind. It would be a reflex and meanwhile I wouldn't think about the rules and the lawyers. Time for that later.
This is where it gets difficult.
If you were watching a take off, and you saw flames coming from an engine, you would probably tempted to shout "Stop!".
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Old 12th Jun 2020, 10:56
  #1182 (permalink)  
 
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No Gear, go round would perhaps be a better call. Less likely focussed pilot would ignore the interfering ATC person!
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Old 12th Jun 2020, 11:04
  #1183 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Maninthebar View Post
Do we know that the gear were up during the approach? Or did they transit up owing to a botched GA process?

Report will (should) tell but it seems to me that TWR's inaction is unlikely to play a significant part in probable cause
Must have been up at least during flare, since the aircraft made a "scrape and go" on its engines. But true, one has to impatiently wait for a reliable report..
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Old 12th Jun 2020, 11:14
  #1184 (permalink)  
 
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Smile

Originally Posted by 16024 View Post
This is where it gets difficult.
If you were watching a take off, and you saw flames coming from an engine, you would probably tempted to shout "Stop!".
I suppose I'd reply "no". Flames coming from an engine is what I'd call "a routine sequence in the sims". Furthermore I know how much a rejected take-off is such a marginal maneuver.. But here, were one guy watching an apparently perfect shaped airliner flaring gear up, it would be a far more marginal matter than "simply" an engine belching flames..

But anyway I'm not an ATC controller, and beeing closer to retirement than to CPL-IR course, I've no plans to start a new career..
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Old 12th Jun 2020, 13:42
  #1185 (permalink)  

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Originally Posted by donotdespisethesnake View Post
I am a bit puzzled how that squares with a non-compliance report made by ATC controller, and formal notice sent to PIA regarding. https://www.aviation-accidents.net/w...ht-pk8303-.pdf
One of those grey areas where the ultimate decision rests with the pilot, notwithstanding that the approach radar controller knew through experience that the profile was decidedly “iffy”.
The other question is whether a report (MOR?) would have been raised had the tragic events not have occurred?

With the benefit of hindsight approach radar controller should have notified the aerodrome controller that is was decidedly “iffy”
and instructed a Go-Around.
Was he transferred to tower frequency?

A time that you are required to do as you are told might be, for example : “I am instructed by Her Majesty Government to refuse you entry into United Kingdom Airspace. What are your intentions?
Failure to comply would be followed by a QRA by air defence.........
There may well be others......yet to be pointed out
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Old 12th Jun 2020, 17:25
  #1186 (permalink)  
 
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Missed approach instructions

There are criteria in ICAO 4444 which define when an aircraft should be instructed to go around, vs when it should be advised to go around. If the ATCO considers the aircraft is dangerously positioned, then it's an instruction; if he/she considers it to be in a position where a safe approach cannot be completed, then it's advice. Both of those hinge on understanding what the ATCOs involved were able to see, what they could deduce from that information, & of particular note, how much that differed from how they were used to seeing the aircraft fly it's approach. Without understanding how PIA normally fly, & how different this approach was, it's difficult to draw any conclusion as to whether the ATC reaction was appropriate or not.
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Old 12th Jun 2020, 17:42
  #1187 (permalink)  

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Sorry I did not listen to any of the tapes, have they been issued a landing clearance?
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Old 12th Jun 2020, 18:32
  #1188 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by alfaman View Post
There are criteria in ICAO 4444 which define when an aircraft should be instructed to go around, vs when it should be advised to go around. If the ATCO considers the aircraft is dangerously positioned, then it's an instruction; if he/she considers it to be in a position where a safe approach cannot be completed, then it's advice. Both of those hinge on understanding what the ATCOs involved were able to see, what they could deduce from that information, & of particular note, how much that differed from how they were used to seeing the aircraft fly it's approach. Without understanding how PIA normally fly, & how different this approach was, it's difficult to draw any conclusion as to whether the ATC reaction was appropriate or not.
Not sure why people are highlighting a go-around request by ATC: none was given in this case so it is hypothetical.

What was given by ATC in this case, were requests to change heading, which was refused by the PIC. This is the subject of the Pakistan CAA notice to PIA, headed "VIOLATION NON-COMPLIANCE OF ATC INSTRUCTIONS BY PIC PIA8303". Clearly at least one person at the CAA felt instructions were given to the PIC which were not followed, when they should have been, regardless of justification or outcome.

Are the Pakistan CAA wrong? I was hoping someone could comment on that discrepancy rather than the hypothetical case.
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Old 12th Jun 2020, 18:58
  #1189 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by FlightDetent View Post
Sorry I did not listen to any of the tapes, have they been issued a landing clearance?
Yes. On the audio that is publicly available, landing clearance was issued and read back
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Old 12th Jun 2020, 19:18
  #1190 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by donotdespisethesnake View Post
Not sure why people are highlighting a go-around request by ATC: none was given in this case so it is hypothetical.

What was given by ATC in this case, were requests to change heading, which was refused by the PIC. This is the subject of the Pakistan CAA notice to PIA, headed "VIOLATION NON-COMPLIANCE OF ATC INSTRUCTIONS BY PIC PIA8303". Clearly at least one person at the CAA felt instructions were given to the PIC which were not followed, when they should have been, regardless of justification or outcome.

Are the Pakistan CAA wrong? I was hoping someone could comment on that discrepancy rather than the hypothetical case.
First, re the discussion of any possible go around request or instruction by ATC. The context where the discussion is of value -- and an aspect that will be looked at by the investigators -- will relate to whether the duty controller in the tower (officially known as the "aerodrome controller"):
1 could see the aircraft on short final (there have been several opinions expressed as to the sight lines and distance from the tower to the threshold area of that runway).
2 was watching (in other words, actually saw v/s was in a position to see the aircraft).
3 was required by national and / or local procedures and directives to observe aircraft on final for issues such as gear being up.

Second, re whether the heading of 180 degrees issued by ATC was a request (or a clearance) or an instruction. According to the audio available online, it was clearly an instruction (definitions as per ICAO Doc 4444) and something every controller knows by heart: the difference between a request, a clearance, and an instruction. With slight variations in wording in different jurisdictions, the definition of an ATC instruction is clear to all controllers (and hopefully also clear to all professional pilots). Basically it's a declarative statement from ATC requiring compliance (subject to captain's right to decline for immediate safety reasons, for which the captain would / should reply with something like: “Unable due xxx…).

I’m not commenting on the reason for the instruction nor the appropriateness of the instruction; I’m simply clarifying that it was, as stated by the CAA, an ATC instruction.

Last edited by grizzled; 12th Jun 2020 at 19:53.
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Old 12th Jun 2020, 21:05
  #1191 (permalink)  
 
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.

I concur: there's also the aspect alluded to earlier in the thread, as to whether either the Tower or Approach ATCO should have initiated a go around, after the instruction to fly the heading was effectively ignored: my instinct is an instructed go around may well have been appropriate at any point from then on - but that's only based on what I've read, which probably doesn't paint the full picture, & the response from the crew put the ATC in an invidious position, unfortunately.
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Old 13th Jun 2020, 03:51
  #1192 (permalink)  
 
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I'm sorry, but as SLF I'm struggling to understand what the command and response is to ATC directives. ATC accepts the aircraft for landing, assigns a runway, etc. and directs the aircraft into the landing pattern. At what point does the PIC take over decisions as to whether the landing should continue? How can the pilot ignore specific (sounds to me) direction from ATC to take another heading and circle and decide on his own to continue the approach? Sure, the pilot is in command of his aircraft, but it would make a lot of sense to me that a command (turn left 180) is not a request but an order. Can the PIC just ignore direction from the ATC? Then what are the ATC there for? Don't they know much more than the landing aircraft as to what is happening around the airport?
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Old 13th Jun 2020, 04:36
  #1193 (permalink)  
 
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Normally follow ATC instructions

It would be reasonable (considering what we know) to think that the crew was under a lot of stress. ATC was doing its best and it is my opinion that they avoided making the situation worse with continuing instructions, considering the crew was already ignoring them.
The evidence will likely conclude that the controller's turn instruction was the a far superior choice.
Crew ignoring aircraft generated warnings is a matter for the accident investigation.
Crew occasionally do ignore a heading like those that might take an aircraft into a thunderstorm, or hit high ground or another aircraft. The protocol seems to be a call like "unable, require right turn to avoid CB", except in China where it seems sometimes ATC thinks it is essential to take that risk.
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Old 13th Jun 2020, 05:06
  #1194 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Winemaker View Post
I'm sorry, but as SLF I'm struggling to understand what the command and response is to ATC directives. ATC accepts the aircraft for landing, assigns a runway, etc. and directs the aircraft into the landing pattern. At what point does the PIC take over decisions as to whether the landing should continue? How can the pilot ignore specific (sounds to me) direction from ATC to take another heading and circle and decide on his own to continue the approach? Sure, the pilot is in command of his aircraft, but it would make a lot of sense to me that a command (turn left 180) is not a request but an order. Can the PIC just ignore direction from the ATC? Then what are the ATC there for? Don't they know much more than the landing aircraft as to what is happening around the airport?
My humble experience ATC tells you the reason or brief explanation when they give you a clearance that's an "unexpected" or rather "out of normal". One example, as a delaying tactic when they give you a 90 degrees intercept heading to runway course if the intention is you to cross the runway extended centreline ATC for sure won't wait you to ask for intercept heading, they would let you know their intention is for you to cross extended centreline line. This should be enough to keep pilots situation aware. If they don't give this brief explanation for sure I will ask for intercept heading at some point.
Now back to the subject, ATC should have given the reason as to why they wanted pilots to turn heading left180. Pilots' tunnel vision at that point resulted in them not querying as to why left heading.
I know the fact that in pilots minds they knew the intention as to why they were instructed to fly the heading. But being given a reason as to why the heading, verbally, would click more to pilots' minds. Again the final decision is always Captain's. After all ATC have never flown the machine who are they to judge what's happening in the cockpit.
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Old 13th Jun 2020, 05:59
  #1195 (permalink)  
 
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I just realized that in all the posts, no one has mentioned the possibility of fumes in the cockpit and perhaps the crew was unaware and not 100%.
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Old 13th Jun 2020, 06:04
  #1196 (permalink)  
 
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Because no one can be bothered to try and make up excuses for this level of incompetence.

At this level, fumes may have helped them more....
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Old 13th Jun 2020, 06:49
  #1197 (permalink)  

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ATC Instructions

Winemaker ~ suggestions to the anomalies which you ask about

I have posted other answers to questions raised on this thread trying to explain the relationship between the crew and ATC. On another thread an Italian B.737 at Bristol UK was instructed to G/A as the approach was unstable (decidedly “iffy”). As usual, the UK AAIB left “no stone unturned”.

So taking each of your points in turn:

1. Within controlled airspace, radar control applies and in essence the crew complies with ATC instructions, unless it is not safe to do so, or a new accord is reached. A new radar heading towards a thunderstorm would be declined. Ultimately it is aircraft commander in charge, not ATC.
I have ignored TCAS protocols.

2. Without reading the transcripts I cannot be certain, but the new heading 180 to fly was an instruction, which the aircraft commander foolishly declined ~ the aircraft had established on the localiser.
He cannot just ignore ATC instructions. He needs to explain why ~ in this case established on the localiser.
See my recent post about the boy scout and the ‘old dear’ crossing the road concept.

3. Yes, ATC should have perfect knowledge (situational awareness) as to what is occurring. I don’t think there was any conflicting traffic in this case?
What approach radar observed was the aircraft too high and too fast on the approach, and recognising this gave a delaying manoeuvre instruction (new heading 180).

If a sooner intervention has occurred before localiser established, then I suspect that there would have been a greater chance of compliance with the ATC instruction. Pure speculation on my part.

4. Now comes the delicate bit. Sensitive areas. In common with all parts of the world, it is possible that “cultural aspects” played a part in these events.

5. What is a mystery at present ~ why the crew continued what was an extremely unstable approach and didn’t G/A no later than 1000’RA ? Interim report due to be published 22 June.

There is enough material for a complete conference for psychologists who specialise in CRM, & those who teach it to crews & junior birdmen. An interesting topic for TRUCE for the ATCOs?

Last edited by parkfell; 13th Jun 2020 at 17:01. Reason: TCAS sentence
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Old 13th Jun 2020, 08:33
  #1198 (permalink)  
 
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[Apologies - I made an editing error in cleaning up the formatting of the original and originally put "Tower ATC" instead of the correct "Approach ATC"]

It's worth repeating the ATC transcript of the first landing phase (NB, the only transcript I have seen start here, clearly halfway through a conversation):

Pilot: Sir, we are comfortable now and we are out of 3500 for 3000, established ILS 25L

Approach ATC: Copy that. Turn left heading 180

Pilot: Sir, we are established on ILS 25L

Approach ATC: Sir, you are 5 miles from touchdown, re-cleared passing 3000 for ILS

Approach ATC: Pakistan 8303 clear to land on ILS 25L

Pilot: Roger Pakistan 8303

Whether or not the 180 heading was an ignored / refused / challenged instruction or not, the approach controller undoubtedly then immediately gives a altitude change on the existing heading and a landing clearance.

Last edited by Gary Brown; 13th Jun 2020 at 09:41. Reason: Error in my editing - I'd put "Tower ATC" when it was "Approach ATC"..
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Old 13th Jun 2020, 09:01
  #1199 (permalink)  
 
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(Former Mil ATCO) If I was giving an 'unusual' instruction, such as the "heading 180" in this instance, I would always try to supplement it with a reason. I suspect most ATCOs here would do similar ... time permitting, of course.

At a pinch, my stated reason might even be spurious to achieve the desired safety aspect. "Traffic sequencing" usually worked well.
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Old 13th Jun 2020, 09:28
  #1200 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Gary Brown View Post
Though it's worth mentioning, in this general context, that anyone can read the detailed and complete CVR transcript from AF447 many times over, in French or in good translation, and while you can be sure what happened, why it happened will forever remain baffling.
For completeness, it should be mentioned that the original CVR transcript of the AF447 was leaked without authority, much to the dismay of BEA and Air France. Not to say that it could not happen again.
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