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Is this a dying breed of Airman / Pilot for airlines?

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Is this a dying breed of Airman / Pilot for airlines?

Old 14th Jan 2011, 16:07
  #221 (permalink)  
 
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One man, Guppy, has chosen to belittle, abuse and ridicule on a habitual basis without the experience in some fields or knowledge to do so.
You err. What I have done is quote you. You've been hung with your own words, even when you changed them to hide your own mistakes. Then you were quoted anyway, to show more deceit. You really can't blame anyone else for your own words, you know.

Insofar as belittling and abuse, you really can't project your own name-calling on anyone else, either. As I said previously, it's usually a sure sign that you've nothing intelligent to offer on the matter that you enter into the name-calling, as you continue to do. You whine of abuse (rather childish whine, really), yet continue to point a finger and name-call as an eight-year-old might:

sanctimonious arrogant self opinionated conceited fool.

I even typed it slow for you.

Idiot.

In a bar you would flat on your arse.

utter ignorance

cocoon existence

[Forest]Guppy

nasty and ignorant fool
Again, threats, belittling, insults, name-calling on a very childish level is so very professional, isn't it? Moreover, you've contributed greatly to your own thread, and enhanced the discussion to no end. Well done.
There's also something to be said for fighting fire with fire.
Really? When do you start?

THAT's ALL! He turns this into "Cathay Pacific, now you tell us that the cadets are of excellent quality". No where was this written or inferred. Same as my first post, but he chooses to interpret via a disturbing, self absorbed logic.
Do you realize that you answered your own question by quoting yourself (who does that??) again? Never the less, it's key to your own question that started the thread, so as much as it relates to the thread and it's myriad direction, is in your own comment. Your commentary centered around Cathay Pacific, held us as the prime example of an airline seeking to reduce airmanship by lowering wages. You specifically cited the cadet program at CX, when introducing human resource questions, and labeling them as technical questions (you've attempted to cover this up, by editing your original post, but the lie was already captured in quotes, so we needn't go there again).

The problem is that you base your indictment on the global airline decline, as you perceive it to be, on Cathay Pacific. You assert repeatedly throughout the thread that airlines deliberately seek the least experienced and able pilots they can, and that the airline industry is deteriorating. Cathay is your poster child for this descent into the airmanship abysss. In a complete about-face, you now tell us that Cathay has the best training in the world.

The cadets at Cathay go through Cathay training (it's the point of having cadets and ab initio training in the first place, you see), and you state that CX training is "some of the best I have seen from experience (to varying degrees) in safety and training departments in the US, Asia, India and Europe." You don't see the error you've made? Cathay represents the intentional decline of global airmanship, you say, yet has the best training in the world. Think hard, and decide which direction to back peddle; your platform can't go both ways.

Wow! 1.49 posts per day since 8 Oct 2005! Recently multiple posts on Xmas Eve, many, many Xmas, more on Boxing Day, same with NYE and NY Day. Most of us were enjoying time with family and/or friends.....
You're deeply concerned with how I spend my time, aren't you? Perhaps you might spend that concern on determining which direction you want to take your platform, rather than worrying about what I do with my spare time, and stick to the thread. Can you do that?

After all, the world of airmanship is spiraling into the toilet, you tell us, a deliberate plot and a conspiracy by airlines worldwide to reduce the level of airmanship in the cockpit, in order to save money...even though the airline you hold up as the lynchpin in the whole process has the best training department in the world (according to you). The question for you now is whether you can solve your own conundrum without resorting to name-calling, or changing your earlier posts to reflect your own new reality, begging for moderation to save you.

You can certainly spend your time worrying about what I do with my time, though this does nothing to move the thread along, or you can attempt to support your premise that founded the thread. Your premise is a falsehood that you cannot defend (not so far, anyway). Are you still unable?
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Old 16th Jan 2011, 09:44
  #222 (permalink)  
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Just to finish the reason for deleting the previous post ..

Bit over the top and largely irrelevant - now, I have no idea for whom the other pilot flies but any attempt to identify individuals or their operator is just not on. Those who use their natural name are readily identified. Those who choose to use a nom de plume are entitled to a measure of privacy.

Note that this does not infer any degree of favouritism to one pilot over another. I will slash and burn (when required on the rare occasion) without fear or favour.

I accept that some pilots get a tad intense in their posts - however, so long as that intensity doesn't get into the nasty arena we will just have to tolerate a range of styles.

I think a few days in the sin bin is not inappropriate.

Please folk, if you want to play willy waving, JB is the place to go.

I would prefer to see this thread wander back to a sensible discussion .. however, if necessary, I will lock it.
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Old 17th Jan 2011, 01:37
  #223 (permalink)  
 
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Perhaps helping to get back on track, has the thread established what qualities ‘this dying breed’ have; what makes them so ‘special’ – special to aviation or particular situations, but not necessarily everywhere.
Various notable incidents – disasters avoided, have been quoted, on occasion with indications of personal qualities or abilities which ‘saved’ the day. However, this is not the norm for everyday operations, not the norm for everyone, yet most people seem to manage.
The industry appears to require aspects of the special qualities, a subset or a minimum standard in order to operate safely. What are these aspects and why do they appear to be so important to safety.

If these aspects (qualities) are identifiable, are they inherent, or teachable, only acquired with experience, or all of the above.
What is ‘it’ that matters, what do we understand about it, why does it appear to be in decline, and what can we do about it – assuming that it’s necessary to take action at all.
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Old 17th Jan 2011, 13:22
  #224 (permalink)  
 
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has the thread established what qualities ‘this dying breed’ have

The quality of airmanship is one which is learned and comes down to experience.
Almost impossible to measure or quantify and hours are only an indicator.
In the US, airline pilots will need to have done their 1500 hour time in GA and are much more likely to have this quality.
In Europe, FO's will go to the airlines with 200 hours and will be highly trained on one type of aircraft but will this be enough to give them the requisite ‘airmanship’ once the proverbial sh*t hits the fan?
TopTup and I argue that it is not enough and is a recipe for disaster. Guppy argues that as long as the training departments are on the ball then anyone with the requisite financial resources can be turned into an airline pilot
It seems to be just that, an argument akin to politics or religion which may never be resolved. The bean counters and bonus driven managers that run aviation just don’t seem to care about airmanship and are willing to just roll the dice.
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Old 17th Jan 2011, 13:31
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Guppy argues that as long as the training departments are on the ball then anyone with the requisite financial resources can be turned into an airline pilot
At no point in time have I ever said, insinuated, suggested, or implied any such thing. Put words in your own mouth, not mine.
The bean counters and bonus driven managers that run aviation just don’t seem to care about airmanship and are willing to just roll the dice.
"Bean counters" don't design training departments.

CX has already been held up as an example of an airline that is intentionaly seeking less qualified pilots and lowering the bar, when in fact, they have the toughest interview process and one of the best training programs out there.

Airmanship is an individual function not connected to a paycheck.

Rigorous standardization and good training ensure that qualified, competent personnel are on the line and that they're kept that way. To connect pay ("beancounters") with airmanship is a fallacy.
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Old 17th Jan 2011, 14:39
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Rigorous standardization and good training ensure that qualified, competent personnel are on the line and that they're kept that way
Exactly....those pilots are qualified and competant but lack airmanship. Again, to reiterate, this is less a problem in the USA from whence you hail Guppy because of the 1500 hour rule.
But it may turn out to be a problem in Europe...I guess only time will tell.

And beancounters run everything these days as they are responsible for the bottom line and on whom the bonus driven managers rely to fatten up their incentive driven bonuses. To deny that means either one is very naive or else maybe a management stooge.
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Old 17th Jan 2011, 17:47
  #227 (permalink)  
 
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Again, to reiterate, this is less a problem in the USA from whence you hail Guppy because of the 1500 hour rule.
The impending 1,500 hour requirement, while a step in the right direction, is really only window dressing. 1,500 hour requirements won't make any difference at all. 1,500 hours is nothing, and it will find application only in the entry-level jobs, anyway.

The difference between a 1,500 hour pilot and a 250 hour pilot is inconsequential save for whatever experience (not hours) that he or she may have accumulated, tempered with his or her ability to accept and apply good training.
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Old 17th Jan 2011, 17:47
  #228 (permalink)  
 
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I think it is worthwhile comparing the airline accident record between mainline legacy 1st world European (ie France, UK,Germany, Dutch, Scandinavian etc) ops and North American mainline ops. Both fly modern Western aircraft in a fully regulated environment and under effective ATC. The only significant difference that I can see is that you will never see a low time pilot at the controls of a mainline jet in North America. The average new hire on a domestic narrow body in North America has traditionally had multi thousands of hours of flying. In Europe however 250 hr new hire FO's are common. It is also a fact that the North American accident rate for mainline jets has been lower than European operators for at least the last 30 years and the gap appears to be widening. It is always dangerous to attribute cause and effect but the consistency of the data does seem to point to the intangible benefit practical experience has in reducing accidents. Supporting this hypothesis is the glaring disparity in accident rates between regional Part 121 carriers and their mainline brethren. Again the regionals operate with much more inexperienced crew.
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Old 17th Jan 2011, 18:05
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Not such a simple comparison, really. Many of those US pilots started life as 250 or 300 hour regional pilots; they've known very little, if anything, outside of their airline training. They may be flying for a legacy carrier, but if all they've ever flown is airline equipment doing airline operations, then the only comparison you could make is against other pilots who hired at low time and only flew based on company training.

Comparatively, however, whereas a pilot in Europe might require a few hundred hours to compete for an Airbus position, the same pilot in the US might require five thousand hours or more.

Conversely, few programs in the US utilize ab initio training programs. If you're going to compare Lufthansa to a US carrier, compare it to one with the same training progams, and then compare pilots of like experience within the company training program.

Companies such as Lufthansa, in fact, have excellent reputations and records. One can't really decry their training or performance. Likewise, Cathay with it's cadet training program doesn't suffer either.
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Old 17th Jan 2011, 23:44
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hope for the future

I just watched a national geographic show on Alaska Bush Pilots. A 17 year old girl was learning to fly from her DAD, a former RAAF pilot.

During her long cross country, she was saying that she wanted to recognize her navigation check points and NOT depend on GPS...technology can fail she said.

so there is hope for the future...good job kid!
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Old 18th Jan 2011, 00:05
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Well, yes. Good job.

Checking VFR checkpoints and features when flying VFR is important.

It doesn't really have any bearing on flying IFR in an airline environment, however, especially as there's generally no data in the cockpit that would enable making visual recognition of checkpoints.

Perhaps the point is that the 17 year old is getting good training, and that may separate her from another 17 year old who doesn't get good training.

Much like the airline pilot, of course; the airmanship displayed isn't a "beancounter" function, but a combination of the quality of training provided, as well as the dedication and tenacity of the individual in receiving and applying that training. When standardization is applied to training and testing, and everyone has to meet the same standard, and everyone operates according to the same standard, then everyone is...the same.

I suppose a training department could insist that their airline crews recognize and identify each waypoint visually...but probably not. Not really applicable.

Insisting that the crews use standard procedures and operate within known tolerances, and apply coordination, decision making, and safety of flight policies, procedures, and skills the same, goes a long way toward ensuring that a crew operates in harmony and safely. While identifying the intersection of a powerline and a river may not have much application, tuning and identifying a course or approach facility certainly does (where the aircraft will allow it, of course).

In an environment where many operators insist that their crews fly automated most of the time, this doesn't leave much variance for personal technique or preference. One could say that's a "beancounter" input, in that paying customers want the smoothest ride possible.

The assertion that airlines are intentionally driving down safety or airmanship to save a buck, or that airline safety (or even pilot integrity and professionalism in the cockpit) is a function of "beancounters" edicts, however, is highly misplaced.
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Old 18th Jan 2011, 06:35
  #232 (permalink)  
 
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guppy, we use visual landmarks all the time in modern airline flying. have you ever flown a visual approach? mind you a visual approach is part of IFR flying.
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Old 18th Jan 2011, 07:11
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Oh, you're talking about a visual approach, where the runway or preceding aircraft is in sight at all times.

I thought you were talking about a 17 year old girl flying her long cross country in Alaska after having been taught to fly by her RAAF father.

You're not going to tell us that the "beancounters" are causing airline pilots to no longer be able to identify visual references during visual approaches, are you?

Let's keep the conversation credible. What student pilot isn't taught to use visual references when navigating by pilotage? What bearing has this on "beancounters," the alleged decrease in global airmanship as the result of airline conspiracy, and the intentional lowering of the bar by airline training departments (under duress from their respective "beancounters")?
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Old 18th Jan 2011, 09:21
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As usual guppy manages to derail the argument into something meaningless.
Cost cutting is part of capitalism and affects EVERY business and corporation. To deny that it happens in airlines who operate at such thin margins and are in danger of going under is naive beyond belief. For proof all you need is google:
http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2010-06-27/travel/ct-biz-0627-pilots-fuel-20100626_1_american-airlines-fuel-pilots-and-dispatchers

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1217770/Cost-cutting-airlines-risk-safety-passengers-warns-aviation-watchdog.html

http://www.wsws.org/articles/2010/nov2010/qant-n12.shtml

In regard to experience, this is a very good insight by Ercos on another part of the forum: http://www.pprune.org/6152901-post35.html

"So where DOES the public expect to see a 22 year old in one of the seats up front?"

In the front of a Caravan, a King Air, a Cessna 206, a Chieftain, a Citation Jet, a Beech 400, a Beech 1900, a Dornier 228, a Pilatus, a Beech 99, an MU-2, a Cessna 421, a Q400, a Dash-8, an EMB-120, etc.

Basically there are many aircraft with forgiving characteristics that let a pilot make their mistakes and correct them without catastrophic results. Most jets, save the Citations and Beech 400s, will not allow for a newer pilot to make the errors necessary for learning without major problems. Often times newer pilots will get behind aircraft, even if those pilots have logged 10,000 hours in a jet as an SIC they will find themselves in a whole new world when their name is under the PIC column of that dispatch release.

It is imperative for any good pilot to have left seat, real PIC time. I'm not talking about flying a jet or handling the yoke. I mean making the big decisions from the moment you show up at work to the moment you duty off. As I said before, a real pilot's skill isn't how smoothly they can land but how well they can plan and execute a flight in its entirety. This can only come from being in the left seat and baring the burden of command.

A young pilot that has never bore that burden and made those decisions in their entire career will be ill equipped when they upgrade. It's easy sitting in that right seat and playing armchair quarterback, but without the time gained making real decisions while commanding a flight you will flounder and you will make more mistakes than someone who has experience sitting in the captain's chair. I'd rather my pilot made their "stupid mistakes" in a King Air moving along at a comfortably slow cruise than a 737 packed with happy vacationers rocketing around at .78 mach.

We all make mistakes, we learn from them too. I can go through a lifetime of near death experiences and diaper changes I encountered in my early flying days. I made those mistakes and escaped with my life because the plane I flew allowed me to slow or turn tightly or land in a forgiving manner. Then I took the lessons learned from that sheer terror or humiliation and applied it to how I made decisions in jets. If I was in a 737 or a Gulfstream when I had gained my hubris there's a good chance I wouldn't be writing this today.
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Old 18th Jan 2011, 10:15
  #235 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Big Pistons Forever
It is also a fact that the North American accident rate for mainline jets has been lower than European operators for at least the last 30 years and the gap appears to be widening.
I don't think that's the case at all. If it is even true, the difference is not statistically significant as far as I know (see below).

Arnold Barnett of MIT Sloan School of Management has been studying global airline accident rates for decades and no such conclusion lies in the work of his that I have read. I haven't read his latest yet, which may be found at this place in the WWW site of the journal Transportation Science, but for which one has to pay.

PBL
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Old 18th Jan 2011, 10:23
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Basically there are many aircraft with forgiving characteristics that let a pilot make their mistakes and correct them without catastrophic results. Most jets, save the Citations and Beech 400s, will not allow for a newer pilot to make the errors necessary for learning without major problems.
Really? Not so.

The great myth that's perpetuated upon students is that turbojet aircraft are some hallowed ground only able to be operated and flown by the sharpest of sticks, and the greatest minds. Utter claptrap.

"Jets" are easier to fly, have greater performance to prevent one from getting into trouble (and with which to extrictate one from one's own error), far greater capability, offer superior situational awareness in most cases, are far more highly automated, operate inside a much smaller envelope, and have greater gauranteed minimum emergency performance than most light airplanes. Frankly, Conducting a cross country in a Beech 18 requires far more of a pilot than doing the same flight in a Learjet.

The sheer arrogance of the airline crowd is to make their job seem as though the pinnacle of the industry. Be here, or be nobody. Only the best and brightest could possibly do this, some cry. Not so.

Tell me how Lufthansa manages to maintain such a stellar reputation with their training pipeline. Tell me about the failing of Quantas cadet program. Tell me of the poor products of the CX cadet system. You really can't. What you can do is whine that you don't have that job. What we have here isn't a case of diminishing airmanship; we have a case of sour grapes from those who think the jobs should be given to experienced pilots who will be paid more.

This isn't an issue of diminishing airmanship. It's one of entitlement.

For proof all you need is google:
Do so more intelligently if you're looking for "proof," because a quick perusal of your evidences find them lacking.

You give us Cost-cutting measure fuels debate at American Airlines - Chicago Tribune, as though this somehow supports the notion of the great airline conspiracy to reduce airmanship. The article doesn't address airmanship at all. Why did you introduce it in the first place? The article, a popular media note, is fraught with error and mistakes, as we often expect popular media articles on aviation to be. To wit:

"American has taken the spotlight as its management spars with the airline's pilots and dispatchers over who determines how much fuel a plane needs to reach its destination, a call traditionally made by the flight's captain."

In fact, this is not a call traditionally made by the captain, save for a limited token "discretionary fuel" value that the PIC may sometimes append to the dispatched fuel load. Let's face it, the captain doesn't even calculate the fuel; it's done for him, as is nearly everything in an airline operation. The article you hold up as evidence of dying airmanship (as a function of airline "beancounter" conspiracy) is both irrelevant, and false.

Not only does the article not support the argument that airlines are attempting to reduce airmanship through the evil of ruthless "beancounters," it actually cites some cases of increased training. Go figure. If you attempted to show us some way that "beancounters" have striven to knock airmanship down a notch, you've clearly failed.

The daily mail article, Cost-cutting airlines 'risk the safety of passengers', warns aviation watchdog | Mail Online, laughably suggests that pilots are spending too much time on simulators:
"
It says that pilots are becoming over-reliant on automatic systems because they spend too long on simulators instead of flying manually.
"

Drivel.

That pilot training has been "paired to the minimum because of cost pressures" is shown by excess simulator training and extra training sessions? Really?

Then, of course, we have Qantas?s near mid-air disaster highlights safety concerns, which states absolutely nothing about decreasing airmanship or a conspiratorial "beancounter" assault on training departments or their budgets.

At best then, introducing these irrelevant articles serves to try to throw up a smoke screen and cloud the issue, contributing nothing to the topic at hand.
Cost cutting is part of capitalism and affects EVERY business and corporation. To deny that it happens in airlines who operate at such thin margins and are in danger of going under is naive beyond belief.
Cost cutting is not synonymous with a reduction in airmanship, nor are savings to be equated with a loss of professionalism Reducing costs doesn't mean training has been diminished, that pilot capability has been diminished, and most critically, that pilot performance is less.

The entire aviation industry operates on a razor-thin profit margin. Knowing this doesn't change anything. One must also know, however, that the cost of failing to properly train crews and provide the tools necessary to do the job, which includes ensuring standardization, understanding, and airmanship, far exceeds to cost of properly providing those services. Airlines are in no hurry to diminish airmanship at the cost of lives and airframes; even the lowly "beancounters" fully understand this strategic fact.
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Old 18th Jan 2011, 14:08
  #237 (permalink)  
 
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guppy

you missed my point...read the title of the thread. I just offered one example that there is hope that our ''old time'' pilots are making sure new pilots carry on certain important traditions.

and I am concerned that your definition of the visual approach is a little TOO textbook.
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Old 19th Jan 2011, 00:53
  #238 (permalink)  
 
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I appreciate your concern, and I'm seeking guidance to revisit that definition, even as we speak. Is there any other?

Visually checking visual waypoints during VFR flight isn't a tradition. It's a functional requirement of navigation by pilotage, and a crucial part of learning to fly. Not exactly a lost art.

Not exactly anything to do with the notion that "beancounters" are conspiring to limit or reduce airmanship on a global basis in airlines, either.
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Old 19th Jan 2011, 14:39
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The 1500 hrs rule has to be the most ridiculous solution to increase safety.

Is there any evidence to suggest this will do anything other than perpetuate the problems for the struggling pilot on minimum wages who commutes across the states because he/she can't afford to live close to base and needs a second job as dish washer to make ends meet?

If I may be so forward as to suggest the FAA to look at evidence from around the globe rather than their own lobbying backyard, they may find good quality training leads to perfectly safe airlines.

As I asked before: are Air France, Lufthansa, KLM, BA any less safe than airlines in the states?

They all use 200 hr pilots on their jets.

A lot of (jet)airline incident/accident reports point to lack of adherence to SOPs, fatigue etc, but hardly ever to a lack of manual flying skills.

GA experience is of limited use in the airline environment.
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Old 19th Jan 2011, 21:02
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guppy...the point was she didn't depend on her GPS...

and do you know what a charted visual approach procedure is?
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