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Russian 737 on ILS 263 knots over the fence.

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Russian 737 on ILS 263 knots over the fence.

Old 17th Feb 2021, 00:30
  #41 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
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At the moment, the tempo of operations is fairly low. When I arrive at the gate the aircraft is there waiting and at the end of the flight the COVID cleaners take over, no 30 minute turnarounds. No slot times and no delays carrying through. Traffic is pretty light and the workload isn’t too high. During my last turnaround flight I had to ask the F/O what the departure time was supposed to be as it was so far down my list of priorities I had forgotten.

This is a big help that we can start slowly and build up instead of instantly going to normal levels. Our profession has very strict recency requirements in recognition of skill degradation over time, these mitigate the effects but do not eliminate them. Three circuits in the sim once a month ticks the box and is fine for a short absence from the flight deck but now over half of us have been grounded going on for a year.

With major layoffs and slow recoveries in the airline world, next year we may have large numbers of pilots coming back to work who haven’t flown for two years or more. Already there is an increasing trend of unstable approaches as crews are behind the aircraft.

We need to start preparing now to mitigate the effects of the lack of currency that will be evident next year when, hopefully air travel starts to recover. The incidents we are seeing now are just a taste of things to come.
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Old 17th Feb 2021, 03:50
  #42 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by krismiler View Post
Once I知 flying 2-3 days a week and I知 back up to speed again, I値l consider a bit of manual flying in the aircraft. Every recency sim I致e done has included an engine failure after V1 and a single engine landing, I致e had more asymmetric practice in the last year than anytime since I did the endorsement. I知 perfectly comfortable with the automatics switched off in the sim where there are no consequences if a practice session goes a bit wrong.

At the moment I知 flying very conservatively, early descents, configuring early, fully stabilised by 1500 and staying out of the monthly safety report will do me.
I appreciate your frankness. I'm sure there are lots of pilots who agree with your view. And as you stated, we're all sitting at different levels of comfort. The highlighted bit is concerning though. Why not take that same confidence to the plane? Let's say you go fly and turn off the automation, and wind up unstable- go around and try again. No harm, no foul. The only inconvenience is you get to the gate 10 minutes later.

And that's assuming you really mess it up. More likely, if anything, it's a messy approach, and you attribute it to a lack of recent experience. You'll walk away with a bit more confidence and skill. Next time, it'll be better. The last person asked an important question. What if on your 3rd flight back, you have to fly without the automation? What's the outcome then, when you've squandered the first two opportunities to polish your skills?

As Bob Viking said
In my flying world we constantly try to do the hardest thing we can to make the routine things easy. 禅rain hard, fight easy is the mantra.
Again, I'm not picking on you personally, as I'm sure tons of pilots have the same concerns (I do too), but after a major interruption such as this, I think we need to have an open (and perhaps difficult) talk about maintaining our skills so that the next emergency doesn't catch us in a deficit.
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Old 17th Feb 2021, 04:43
  #43 (permalink)  
 
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It's basic. Whether it's Bangalore, SFO or this one, whether the AP is on or off, the ATHR/Auto throttle is on or off, or you follow FD manually or not, on approach speed and flight path has to be monitored by the pilot. Those who don't do this are either badly trained or have become complacent. There was a case in Delhi where pilot was doing an approach at 300kts violating all speed restrictions of below 10000ft. also below 3000ft. when asked three times by the ATC can you make it, he answered in the affirmative and when cleared to land executed a GA almost causing mid air with Aircraft that had taken off. What conclusions can you draw for this insane act?

Last edited by vilas; 17th Feb 2021 at 13:05.
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Old 17th Feb 2021, 05:35
  #44 (permalink)  
 
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We had a pilot join us a few years ago after being away from flying for 10 years. This didn't present any major problems as he was a good operator and after a few months in the right seat he got back into the left again. All the Captains he was flying with were doing 80+ hours a month so their currency wasn't an issue and he would have been easier than most new first officers to fly with. He was also the only pilot in the company at the time who had been away for such an extended period.

The current situation is unprecedented so we don't know exactly what it will be like last year when hopefully there will be a significant improvement in air travel. Airlines will be faced with a situation where most crews are short of recent experience and will have to appraise them before returning them to duty. Some pilots may be able to get back easily with minimal training, others may need much longer to get back up to speed. The present system of restricting "green" crew from flying together might have to be applied to ensure that a Captain and F/O who have both been out of the flight deck for two years aren't rostered together.

At the moment I'm happy with my sim performance and think I could do the same in the aircraft if I had to but don't feel the need to try until I'm a bit more current.
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Old 17th Feb 2021, 13:04
  #45 (permalink)  
 
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Ten years! And it didn't require him to do type rating again? Very strange, which authority permits this?
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Old 17th Feb 2021, 13:27
  #46 (permalink)  
 
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krismiler

You may have a good idea there about green crews. Something like a virtual or temporary reset of your time in type until you get to 100hrs within 120 days.
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Old 17th Feb 2021, 14:11
  #47 (permalink)  
 
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Ten years! And it didn't require him to do type rating again? Very strange, which authority permits this?
He did a new type rating, same manufacturer but a smaller type to what he was on previously. Back in those days we took on a 50 year old with a brand new licence and 200 hrs total time.
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Old 17th Feb 2021, 14:21
  #48 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Capt Chambo View Post
SID PLATE

Are you sure about that? The B737-800痴 I fly have a maximum quoted fuel capacity of 20,896kgs, in practice we rarely manage to load much above 20,600kgs. All somewhat short of the 26 tonnes you are quoting!
No I'm not .. been furloughed too long. For 'tonnes' read litres x 1000 . Apologies.
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Old 17th Feb 2021, 14:39
  #49 (permalink)  
 
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IMO COVID and us flying far less than usual should be dealt with as a THREAT and mitigation measures briefed at the briefing stages: SOP adherence, monitoring and assertiveness should be emphasized.
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Old 17th Feb 2021, 16:23
  #50 (permalink)  
 
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vilas

That pilots worldwide think automation flies the plane for you. All it does is free up your hands a little and give you back a little brain processing power. But you are still responsible for ensuring the correct flightpath no matter the degree of automation currently engaged, and I will add that that is so for any phase of flight. People are way too relaxed on automatics and way too stressed hand flying. This is why we have so many "this can't be happening to me" moments, so many losses of control, so many crews suddenly dumped into hand flying at the worst possible moment.

I don't think standards and training will ever be where they need to be, so it is only through individual effort that one can achieve excellence or at least build confidence on one's ship. Yes, automation has gotten better, yes it has improved safety, but we must get better as well. There are no excuses. As Smilin_Ed said, any passenger would be most uncomfortable hearing that their crew is uncomfortable flying manually.
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Old 18th Feb 2021, 04:53
  #51 (permalink)  
 
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Stuka child
It's all about developing the scan. All parameters of flight need to be periodically monitored and when a deficiency is noticed the related factors need to checked and corrected. Like for speed, check attitude/flight path and thrust adjust what's not correct. Even if you have not flown manually for a while the precision may suffer but not gross violations like the SFO. 31kts below Vapp during a command check is crazy. It's crashes like these that prompt technology to think about more and more automation. Can pilotless flight do anything worse?
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Old 18th Feb 2021, 06:55
  #52 (permalink)  
 
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Much emphasis has been made about SA on this thread. Rightfully so. So now that he/she has identified a problem with the flight path, how is the pilot uncomfortable with hand flying going to fix it? Not everything can by fixed by turning knobs or pushing buttons. We've seen time and time again that a small percentage of crews are unable to fly when the situation requires it, and serviceable aircraft wind up in flames. What's the solution? More FMA callouts? Say "checked" a few extra times? We all have lapses in SA. When the AP drops off unexpectedly and rolls the plane into a 45 degree bank, reading the FMA and trying to figure out the FD is going to leave a pilot perplexed and confused all the way to the crash site.
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Old 18th Feb 2021, 07:32
  #53 (permalink)  
 
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Clearly a rushed and high energy approach that should have been thrown away much earlier. Clearly ineffective intervention from P2. Amazing that the speedbrake wasn稚 used. The decision to hand fly was a mistake on this occasion as it resulted in workload higher than their capacity. Any experienced operator knows that hitting the glide at 200kts and flap 5 the aircraft will accelerate down the glide. Full speedbrake and probably gear down were required at this point.

Flaps shouldn稚 be used for drag and good practice is to only take the next flap setting when within 10kts or so of the min speed for current flap. Asking for flap close to the flap limiting speed is a good warning sign that your approach is going badly.

Some Boeing FDs have a know anomaly subject to a BAB. If a glideslope signal is subject to interference the GS FMA can have a yellow line appear through it and the FDs pitch sharply down. Something I have experienced first hand, and required intervention to disconnect the AP and ignore the FDs until the GS signal restored. Luckily we were visual at the time and were able to continue and stabilise the approach. I wonder if this could have been a contributing factor on this occasion coupled with very poor flight path and every monitoring by both pilots.

Last edited by Propellerhead; 18th Feb 2021 at 07:44.
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Old 18th Feb 2021, 08:32
  #54 (permalink)  
 
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When the AP drops off unexpectedly and rolls the plane into a 45 degree bank, reading the FMA and trying to figure out the FD is going to leave a pilot perplexed and confused all the way to the crash site.
It doesn't happen in Airbus. Aircraft stays where it is you just have look at the parameters and set them right. Don't bring in Boeing situations. In airbus people have dis connected AP and crashed or caused incidents. Not reading FMAs have landed people in trouble in Airbus. Look! let's understand straight if one makes heavy weather of raw data in airbus there's no way he is going to do it in a Boeing or even a non FBW Airbus for that matter. You don't manoeuvre Airbus you just set it where you want it.
Alternate law just keep wings level which you have do in a Boeing all the time.

Last edited by vilas; 18th Feb 2021 at 08:47.
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Old 18th Feb 2021, 09:15
  #55 (permalink)  
 
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Stuka childIt's all about developing the scan. All parameters of flight need to be periodically monitored and when a deficiency is noticed the related factors need to checked and corrected. Like for speed, check attitude/flight path and thrust adjust what's not correct. Even if you have not flown manually for a while the precision may suffer but not gross violations like the SFO. 31kts below Vapp during a command check is crazy. It's crashes like these that prompt technology to think about more and more automation. Can pilotless flight do anything worse?
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Old 18th Feb 2021, 12:43
  #56 (permalink)  
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required intervention to disconnect the AP and ignore the FDs until the GS signal restored.
Rather than ignore the FD which is giving spurious information, it would be easier to switch the FD off thus giving an uncluttered artificial horizon? That is what Boeing advise. If the FD is not giving the correct guidance switch it off.
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Old 18th Feb 2021, 16:13
  #57 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by vilas View Post
It doesn't happen in Airbus. Aircraft stays where it is you just have look at the parameters and set them right.
That痴 the crux of it, isn稚 it? Some people can稚 斗ook at the parameters and set them right. If you can稚 do that, you池e getting a front row seat at the crash site.
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Old 18th Feb 2021, 17:37
  #58 (permalink)  
 
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I wonder if one rents a little plane like a 172 or a PA28 and does some steep turns and some touch and goes, would it translate to the jet/turboprop? I think it would be a good confidence booster at the very least.
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Old 18th Feb 2021, 19:32
  #59 (permalink)  
 
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Confidence booster? Yes. But it may not translate directly. Some people are of the opinion that safety is degraded without automation in a Boeing or Airbus.
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Old 18th Feb 2021, 21:02
  #60 (permalink)  
 
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I'm hoping it will not become an industry standard to manually fly when the weather is marginal so that rusty pilots can improve their skills. Practice hand flying by all means but do it on a nice day when you can look out of the window and then relate that view with the internal view, thus reinforcing previously learned skills. This is not being dependent on automation but realising that pilots who are out of practice need to re-establish the relationship they used to have with their skills, why make it so hard for yourself?
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