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Flybe pilots fired after flight deck row

Old 24th Apr 2012, 09:18
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How about blaming the Chief Pilots, HR, and management in general for hiring, keeping and promoting/upgrading these idiots who have no business being in a rhs and much less a lhs.
We all know who they are, yet can´t seem to get rid of them.
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Old 24th Apr 2012, 09:37
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All FlyBe have done here is undermine every Captain in their company. Unless there is overwhelming evidence to the contrary, it is vital to back your captains. Despite the clear failings of the Captain here, I do not see him fitting that category. The FO is a clear cut case, but not the Skipper.

Landflap - CRM was made for people like you, who have no idea how difficult they are to work with. Sadly the very people who most need CRM training are those who least embrace it.
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Old 24th Apr 2012, 09:38
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Captain Wood said FO Akers should have requested another pilot take over for the return trip to Exeter because of the "massive" fall-out between the pair and that "He chose to put the safety of innocent passengers and crew members at risk by operating the return flight.".
It should have been the Captain's decision to offload the FO (being responsible for the flight, and with the legal power to offload anybody)- not the FO's decision to offload himself.

... and I think I would certainly offload an FO offering a bout of fisticuffs in the carpark!!
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Old 24th Apr 2012, 09:45
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Alex de Meerkat,

You may be right & know more about this incident than I, but would you like to be sitting in the pax cabin with the wx at destination, zero cloudbase viz 50metres, with this particular Skipper. Very unfortunate incident & there can be no winners at all, to me it appears both the guys are as bad as each other.
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Old 24th Apr 2012, 11:35
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Flybe management haven't undermined their Captains (or FOs for that matter). They have instead made it abundantly clear that they expect us to act as professionals and to treat our various colleagues, whether flightdeck or not, with due respect. I have absolutely no problem with that whatsoever.
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Old 24th Apr 2012, 13:36
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Originally Posted by Bigmouth View Post
How about blaming the Chief Pilots, HR, and management in general for hiring, keeping and promoting/upgrading these idiots who have no business being in a rhs and much less a lhs.
We all know who they are, yet can´t seem to get rid of them.
Some people always want to blame everyone else instead of the guilty parties. There may be higher up fault in some cases but certainly not always. The reality is that when you hire someone, they are usually hiding any negative aspects of themselves and in reality, you don't know if you are hiring some sort of problem personality person whether they are a liar, a cheat or a bigmouth.
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Old 24th Apr 2012, 13:50
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How about blaming the Chief Pilots, HR, and management in general for hiring, keeping and promoting/upgrading these idiots who have no business being in a rhs and much less a lhs.
Bigmouth - agree totally!

These things don't just happen - it isn't rocket science to get to know who is becoming a "prima donna" - any management worth it's salt would have spotted this a mile off and taken action. I feel that by sacking both pilots this takes the spotlight off the management. It would seem this was a badly crewed flight from the start for all sorts of reasons.

However notwithstanding CRM, "stroppy" FOs are around and need to be handled accordingly - if necessary this means offloading said FO. The Captain has overall authority for the flight (even if he is b*****d to work with!) and there are some FOs around who also seem to think they are "God" and have no idea of what it is like to have overall responsibility for the operation, although they think they do.

Am all for good CRM but some of this "touchy feely" stuff has now gone too far. That said, good Captains have to have "style adaptability". A year or so I flew with a (very competent and nice) FO who had recently been released on line. He said to me in conversation "They dont teach you during line training that it's different flying with different Captains" My reply was "and when you get into this seat you'll find that different FOs are different to fly with". There followed a big "thinks" bubble - I don't think he had looked at it from that point of view before (understandably).

When I started as a young Second Officer in 1971 there were many more "character" Captains to fly with. I made it a personal rule that I would always fly with whoever I was rostered to fly with and, notwithstanding flight safety, do everything I could to work with them and operate as a team. I often found that much could be learned from some of the old b*****s who in fact were quite amenable if you came along with the right attitude.

This whole incident is symptomatic of what is wrong with our industry these days (and indeed one could say our society). The flight deck of an aircraft is not the place to have an argument, by all means sort it out on the ground, of course.

In my opinion, for this event to have occurred is a failure of the "system" (or in this case the obvious lack of one) rather than the individuals.
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Old 24th Apr 2012, 14:00
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It is good... at last.... to see the standard of debate improving with people who actually know what they are talking about due real life experience posting.....getting back to what PPRuNe was all about many years ago.
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Old 24th Apr 2012, 15:25
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40&80

Are you referring to your previous posts by any chance?
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Old 24th Apr 2012, 16:31
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If this was all sparked by a disagreement over weather avoidance, then the Captain should have done as the F/O suggested. Why as a Captain would you generate a conflict over an issue such as this; it is not as though the F/O was insisting that they fly through the weather!

Indeed, it is odd that the Captain elected not to take the safer option. Was this all part of an attempt to stamp his authority on the F/O? The article reports the Captain as saying “Now I can see why you have had issues with other captains”; did the reputation of the F/O result in the Captain behaving in an atypical manner?

I have little sympathy for either party involved, as each contributed to a situation that presented a risk to their passengers and crew. The tribunal cannot give them their jobs back, but can only award compensation, and I think it highly unlikely that either will work in commercial passenger transport operations again.

I have flown with many pilots over the years, some I liked and some I didn’t (I daresay they had similar views about me). One thing is certain though, if any of them held the view that they would never fly with me again then that is a failure on my part not theirs.

As previous posters have commented on the CVR, it is also worth mentioning that many CVR systems are ‘looped’ tape systems (A319 only maintains last 2 hours of conversation); if the ‘main event’ happened on the way to AGP then it would have not been available for analysis on arrival back at EXT.
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Old 24th Apr 2012, 16:37
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Regarding the weather, as with all these stories you never get told the full story, and there's a fair amount of detail missing from the report which makes you suggest the captain elected not to go around the weather for the sake of not going around it, which is actually a fallacy.
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Old 24th Apr 2012, 16:48
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Knucklehead Fo´s are a pita and a nuisance, but any Captain worth his salt should know how to deal with them. You don´t have a right-seat-captain without a left-seat-FO.

Having a knucklehead in the left seat, on the other hand, is a real problem. CPs that will listen to an FO´s complaint about a problem Captain are few and far between. CPs that will take action are virtually non-existent.
If you hired
a liar, a cheat or a bigmouth
then be a man, own up to it and rectify it.
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Old 24th Apr 2012, 18:57
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Well said OttoThrottle! Totally agree.
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Old 24th Apr 2012, 22:55
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Otto Throttle & fireflybob,

Well said, calm accurate & well reasoned posts, can only totally agreee with you both.
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Old 24th Apr 2012, 23:12
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What do you think might have happened if either of them refused to fly the return leg
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Old 25th Apr 2012, 07:35
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Aftermath

We're still awaiting the outcome of the tribunal hearing of course but, with the best will in the world, the long-term prospects of both appellants can't be very bright.

One of the most poignant aspects of the whole affair is how these two men - who, just hours earlier, had been in secure, well-paid, and probably pensionable jobs, with every expectation of seeing their careers through to retirement - suddenly both found themselves out on the cobbles.

Rewind time to the fateful day. That morning neither of them would have dreamt for a moment that this routine flight would be their last. The hours of study, all those exams and medicals and check-rides, the licences, and the honing of their skills over the years, were all about to be rendered useless.

The Mail reported that " Since his sacking, Captain Bird has not found any work despite applying to be an estate agent and work at a tile factory. Despite his flying skills, he said his future may be as a handyman."

Whatever the rights and wrongs of the affair, surely most pilots will feel a twinge of sympathy for the predicament in which both men now find themselves.


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Old 25th Apr 2012, 08:24
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Sorry Korrol, I take your point but at the end of the day, this is a grown up job and if crew are unable to conduct themselves in a an adult manner, then I for one have no sympathy for them. Everyone has a choice.
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Old 25th Apr 2012, 09:40
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Sigh, fellow pilots are almost always our worst enemies.

I hope Capt. Bird does not lose heart; lesson learnt albeit at great cost but there are always opportunities elsewhere.

Last edited by bakutteh; 25th Apr 2012 at 10:46.
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Old 25th Apr 2012, 10:29
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BBoyo

I suspect they reported the incident because these days we are expected to report anything untoward that happens during a flight, however trivial. Thus it is becoming a habit. We feel uncomfortable if we walk away from a duty with a guilty little secret, that perhaps the other guy might decide to report after all. Yes, in the good-old-days this sort of silly happening would have been sorted out over a pint. But the good-old-days are gone, if not forgotten.
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Old 25th Apr 2012, 10:58
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I am one of those who thinks like korroll, and feel a considerable sense of sympathy for both guys' predicament, but more so for the Captain. Nonetheless, like korroll, I cannot help but reflect that both guys never started their day with any other intent than having a normal day out. They were not criminals and however foolishly they behaved when faced with a conflict situation, they were not intending to let things go as much as they did. Very sad.
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