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Worldwide pilot experience too low?

Old 14th Jul 2019, 08:11
  #61 (permalink)  
 
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I personally think working oneself up the ranks from simple, more hands on aircraft makes the more comperent and experienced pilot.

However, having talked to certification staff and test pilots a few years ago, manufacturers are developing their modern aircraft in such a way, that the product is designed so that it can take a maximum amount of bad technique, bad decisions and beatings of the two "monkeys" sitting up in front, to make up and prevent hull loss at any cost by developing technolgy to counteract human error. This allowed low experienced pilots to slip through and low cost MPL concepts for airliners to function, as the machine and SOP would compensate for short-comings.

This seemed to work very well with the one or other exception. And now the 737 Max came along with a failed system, that was an intended further step in automation development - so that they did not even consider training the pilots for the system. A catastrophic failure.

So it remains pretty philosophical - but probably serves best to have both worlds: competent pilots in state of the art engineered aircraft.

In Europe it has become rare because GA is being politically strangled out of existence by every means possible and a narrowbody airliner is usually the only piece of equipment availiable for a 200hr MPL pilot to start on, with only a few exotic exeptions.
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Old 14th Jul 2019, 11:59
  #62 (permalink)  
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but probably serves best to have both worlds: competent pilots in state of the art engineered aircraft.
Yes but.... This objective describes aircraft of increasing complexity (perhaps to compensate for a reduction in some basic pilot skills), and pilots meeting the skill level of "competent" for that aircraft. It does not describe an excess of skill for the aircraft, just competent. That may be okay nearly all the time, but the more narrow gap between competence and aircraft complexity can also have more criticality if breached. The pilots must realize that they are not flying with an excess of competence to possibly be applied to overcome a problem, they may have to draw on every bit of the skill they were trained, and at just the right moment in a stressful situation. They may not be relying on muscle memory to handle the basics, when when of the more complex systems fails, and they are left with the combination of simple and complex problems all at once.

It takes me back to the decades old urban legend of the man who was given excess salesmanship on all the features of the motorhome he bought, without truly understanding them, nor their limitations. Once on the road, he put the cruise control on, and went to the back to make coffee. The more we have automation, and complex labour/skill saving systems, the more the pilot must recognize that, and the limitations of those systems. If the systems have absolutely no limitations, I guess we don't need the pilots anymore - and I will stop riding in airliners!
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Old 14th Jul 2019, 12:17
  #63 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Propellerpilot View Post
I personally think working oneself up the ranks from simple, more hands on aircraft makes the more comperent and experienced pilot.
Generally agree with one caveat. Depending on the nature and quality of early years training, a pilot can pick up some bad habits that may be hard to erase later on. One reason prior military pilots are favored by airlines is that you have a better idea of what youíre getting as opposed to a pilot who has passed through airlines A, B, & C. Ab initio training at least has the the distinction of providing a consistent and controlled environment, but hours in the classroom/sim still doesnít replicate the real world. What Iím am saying is that pilot competency is a combination of good technical training and experience, but more of the first doesnít make up for less of the second.
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Old 14th Jul 2019, 12:38
  #64 (permalink)  
 
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Flown with a few MPLs on the A320 and found them fine, no issues at all. Flew with a few graduates of P2F outfits in Eastern Europe and Indonesia, I frankly wouldn't leave the cockpit and I made sure to use the lav during the turnaround to ensure this is how it would be.
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Old 14th Jul 2019, 13:09
  #65 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Jim_A View Post
While all the above are good points, commercial aviation continues to be safer than just about any form of transportation. The cynic in me says there is an "acceptable" hull loss rate, and as long as fatalities remain below a certain level there will not be much motivation to make any changes that will cost a lot of money in terms of pilot hiring or training.
No need to be a cynic, just ask the Boeing finance department about how many fatalities it takes to annihilate the penny pinching in manufacturing aircraft and pilot quality/training.
The chicken finally comes home to roost.
Flown with a few MPLs on the A320 and found them fine, no issues at all. Flew with a few graduates of P2F outfits in Eastern Europe and Indonesia, I frankly wouldn't leave the cockpit and I made sure to use the lav during the turnaround to ensure this is how it would be.
It's all about assessing candidates. MPLs are mostly assessed because they are subsidised by interested airline parties, thus a certain initial quality and sane motivation is guaranteed. P2Fs basically skip assessment because they are subsidised by sheik- or mogul daddies, quality and genuine motivation do not really matter. The cheap side of the industry likes that, someone else is doing the necessary investment for their personnel. Quality is secondary, as long as the broad public does not connect accidents with the above, they can get away with it.
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Old 14th Jul 2019, 14:40
  #66 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Tomaski View Post
What I’m am saying is that pilot competency is a combination of good technical training and experience, but more of the first doesn’t make up for less of the second.
Well said, Tomaski.

My concern is that new pilots are not being taught airmanship, and as a consequence do not acquire a feel for or an understanding of the delicate balancing act which is flying. Perhaps memory of the Asiana 214 crash at SFO in 2013 is too prominent in the remnants of my brain. Oh, and then there is Colgan Air/Continental Connection 3407 and ...

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Old 14th Jul 2019, 18:50
  #67 (permalink)  

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In surgery, as in flying, it is possible to train people to do two or three things very well indeed. With pressures towards ever increasing specialisation they may never do anything else, and have a CMG and a vast reputation at the end of their career.

Naturally, it is possible to train them to do these two or three things quite quickly. New Consultants now have about the same age and experience as the newly appointed Senior Registrar of old. The demand for perfect results has led to early superspecialisation (read automation if you will).

The difference is that previously, Senior Registrars would have five or more years experience before getting a Consultant appointment. When a young Consultant today meets an unexpected situation s/he is far less likely to be able to deal with it adequately than the Consultants of old.
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Old 17th Jul 2019, 03:07
  #68 (permalink)  
 
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Of all the clap trap that’s been written on this site, this is by far and away the most outrageous bit of literary faeces I’ve ever seen. To claim that those coming through the ranks now are “taking advantage”, that they “want something for free and without any effort” is so disingenuous it shouldn’t really warrant a reply.

Those coming through the ranks now are going about it the only way they see possible, and paying a great deal for it. They are a product of corporate greed from the generation that went before them - those that claim to be the last remaining sky gods. Coinc
Compare that with what is happening now. Anyone who can breathe and has 1500 hours on anything (or 700 hours on a helicopter if he is Army trained) is guaranteed a job immediately without even having to apply. One buddy of mine is 59 years old and they still want him, even though he has no multi engine time or an ATP (We will pay for all that! Just get here!)
I don't wonder if the present crop of wannabees is a little arrogant and spoiled; I would be!


How would you like to be sitting in the back when he does his first command flight, with a FO who is a product of the current training system and has never flown an airplane with passengers in it before?
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Old 17th Jul 2019, 07:41
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Anyone who can breathe and has 1500 hours on anything (or 700 hours on a helicopter if he is Army trained) is guaranteed a job immediately without even having to apply
I don't know what country you are writing about but it certainly is not Australia unless maybe it is crocodile country up north. While there is much touted world wide shortage of pilots, those claims emanate from aircraft manufacturers rather than from established airlines. Cathay Pacific for example are knocking back significant numbers of experienced overseas pilots because (the company claims) the standards are so low.
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Old 17th Jul 2019, 18:01
  #70 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by boofhead View Post




How would you like to be sitting in the back when he does his first command flight, with a FO who is a product of the current training system and has never flown an airplane with passengers in it before?
When's his first command flight? Five years after he gets hired? His new FO? How many hours of IOE/LOE with a CKA will he have had before he starts flying with regular line Captains? 30 hrs? 50 hrs? 100 hrs?

It's not like they take a new hire, give him his ATP, MEL, and type rating and make him a Captain and send him out with an FO that hasn't flown with a CKA for their first 30-100 hrs.

In the U.S., as long as it's not a new fleet type, one of the pilots has to have 100 hrs in type.

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Old 24th Jul 2019, 21:41
  #71 (permalink)  
 
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An effective pilot needs training, understanding, knowledge, skill and experience. Some of these factors (if above average) can make up for deficiencies in the others but mostly I would say skill and experience are the most important and those are the ones a new pilot cannot get from reading a book or listening to a briefing or watching videos on Utube. We are losing, through attrition, the ones that do have the right stuff and replacing them with those who have only a superficial understanding of what the job requires. I don't have to be Nostradamus to predict the results.
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Old 25th Jul 2019, 00:20
  #72 (permalink)  
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Fear. Have we had a post about fear?

I based the opening chapter of my novel on an experience I had as a Viscount FO. I did not know it was possible to experience that much fear, especially for nearly two hours. No weather radar and FL170 or 180 most of the early IT's to Spain. Lots of learning to be had, and mostly okay, but just one night for me was beyond belief. Horizon bar off the scenes time and again, and below MSL over the mountains, then to be thrown out the tops to the stars only to fall back into the maelstrom. 45mins on one 20 min leg. Blood and sick down the cabin ceiling where the poor souls had unstrapped to kneel and pray.

The return flight turned out to have a very funny end, despite a 4" hole through the wing. The skipper had just struck his Zippo when the bang happened. His face, lit by the little flame, was a picture I'll never forget.

I had to give myself a serious talking to to carry on. All that work, can't give that up now! Had to master the fear and channel it into concentration when things got tacky. Really, it's not fair expecting these 'Children' to be put in the position of a captain incapacitation without some awareness of what it might be like to get a real thrashing one 'dark and stormy'. They need at least an awareness.
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Old 25th Jul 2019, 15:08
  #73 (permalink)  
 
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Really, it's not fair expecting these 'Children' to be put in the position of a captain incapacitation without some awareness of what it might be like to get a real thrashing one 'dark and stormy'. They need at least an awareness.
Agree wholeheartedly. One way which is better than nothing is during type rating training in the simulator. Most simulators have various amounts of turbulence built into their fidelity. The Boeing 737 simulator we operate has quite alarming turbulence available which is very rarely used because no simulator syllabus calls for it.
Five minutes in the simulator of hand flying in a selection of moderate to severe turbulence is all that is needed for cadet pilots to learn the instrument flying skill needed to cope with severe turbulence. Motion sickness is likely so common sense and care needs to be applied by the instructor not to overdo it.
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Old 29th Jun 2020, 12:13
  #74 (permalink)  
 
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There's no substitute for experience. I did several years instructing on singles and light twins VFR and IFR, aerobatics instructing and aerial photography.
Aside from handling skills it gives you captaincy skills from day one. You have no one else to help you or rely on except yourself when a difficult situation crops up or a go/no go decision has to be made. Also you often don't have the system redundancy as in pax jets with GA aircraft often being quite old so comms failures, flaps locked, engine problems and other types of situations happened from time to time. Sometimes coupled with poor weather.
So to say 1500 hours instructing in the circuit is useless is a bit naive really.
When I moved into the airlines and it came up in conversation with Captains they always said that they saw something was lacking from the guys coming directly from flight school in comparison.
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