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jetairways flight 9w118 contact lost over Germany

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jetairways flight 9w118 contact lost over Germany

Old 20th Feb 2017, 23:47
  #41 (permalink)  
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Don't know if the 787/A350 have it, but my last plane, the G6000, coukd display on the map view, either airspace or political boundaries. Also, if on out the cursor on "pen ship", the local comm frequencies were displayed and could be directly tuned.


Not much, really
galaxy flyer is offline  
Old 21st Feb 2017, 06:50
  #42 (permalink)  
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Excuse my ignorance but what can these military planes do to protect the passengers??

Not much, really
I disagree galaxy flyer!

While its clear that QRA jets will not be able to save the passengers on board a hijacked aircraft, if the hijackers have full control of the flight deck and are intending to crash the aircraft, there are other benefits of having a military aircraft near by.

For the passengers and crew specifically it will provide the comfort of knowing that they are not alone and that someone is aware of their situation and working a solution.

For everybody else (ATC, other aircraft in the vicinity, decision makers) there is the benefits of knowing the hijacked aircraft exact location, speed, heading, altitude and other relevant information that an observant military pilot can provide (number of people in the cockpit, movement in the cabin etc.). Remember that it only requires the transponder to be turned off, for all the civies to lose track of the aircraft (ATC is blind, TCAS does not provide warnings - primary radars (if available) are not precise enough to provide propper seperation to other traffic).

For the people in the probable target building (9-11 scenario) it might be their rescue, if in a country where leadership are willing to make that extreme difficult decision and order the aircraft downed before it reaches its intended target.

Last but not least it will affect the hijackers. They now know that somebody is there to intervene with their plan, and that they might not achieve their objective.

My point was more about the geography... Except for France, Spain, Germany and maybe Italy the timing from contact lost, intercept and action is just on the edge of the impossible. Case in point a few years ago (Feb 2014) the Swiss air force was scolded for not being able to intercept an Ethiopian Airlines aircraft that was hijacked by an apparently mentally unstable pilot (!) to Geneva. Problem is that the plane was only for a few minutes in Swiss airspace, escorted initially by Italian then French fighters. What was the chain of command in this case ?!
Regarding atakacs question above, I think the reason for the Swiss not being able to react, has more to do with them being a neutral country working on their own. All other NATO countries are interconnected (chain of command wise) when it comes to the protection of their airspace. This means that if an aircraft is intercepted over Germany and the situation is not solved before it enters for instance UK airspace, UK QRA jets will be ready to take over the intercept when the aircraft crosses the FIR boundary.

I have personally been on QRA missions where the target aircraft was followed by QRA jets from 4 different countries during its flight, with each QRA handing it over to the next QRA at the FIR boundary.
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Old 21st Feb 2017, 07:00
  #43 (permalink)  
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2 indians not talking for 33 minutes, must be a record
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Old 21st Feb 2017, 08:00
  #44 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by david1300 View Post
Great video. How far behind would the BA flight be positioned?
The footage was taken from BAW2042 at FL380, most of the time less than 1 NM behind JAI118, which was at FL360.

(Replay on PlaneFinder, NE of Cologne, 2017-02-16, time around 16:45 UTC)

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Old 21st Feb 2017, 08:17
  #45 (permalink)  
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In the airspace I used to work, there would have been an exclusion zone put around the 'offending' aircraft and the QRA aircraft. In fact the crew commented about potential pull up from the interceptors.
I was surprised to see that the BA flight was allowed to be so close to the action.
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Old 21st Feb 2017, 08:22
  #46 (permalink)  
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They knew where the BA flight was and where it would go to. You seem to overestimate the drama factor in that situation. They just checked what's on and verified. Not that rare to happen.

Monitoring 121.5 might still have been helpful.
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Old 21st Feb 2017, 11:17
  #47 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by F-16GUY View Post
Also goes the other way and I'd bet that Control tried to call them up multiple times on 121.5 with no response before considering to scramble the QRA jets. So my bet is that they did not have a radio set for 121.5, the volume was to low or they just didn't listen for the calls.

Furthermore, if they have been in german airspace before they should have wondered why they did not get handed over to the next frequency for such a long time, and maybe try to establish comms with privius agency, try on 121.5 or look it up in their flight pubs.

As I have found myself sitting in the cockpit multiple times during QRA scrambles towards "non-talkers", I seriously consider this pure airmanship when a crew of two pilots flying straight and level on full automatics at cruise altitude, are able to fly halfway across Europe without noticing that they should be talking to somebody.

Regarding the ethical dilemma of 1 aircraft full of pax VS many more people on the ground, I fully respect the germans with that regard. Main thing is that they have given it some thought before a potential incident takes place and that they have made the decision beforehand. Once the event is underway there won't be enough time to have this kind of debate.


I also bet that all other NATO contries have procedures in place for such a case, and that if a decision is made to bring down a civilian aircraft, this decision will not be a decision the pilot in the interceptor will have to make. This decision will be made in the highest leadership level.
With current technology it is extremely easy to just alter the recipient controller of a Voice over IP link from the aircraft. So as the aircraft is handed off to the next controller using the standard 'silent handoff' between controllers, the VOIP link automatically transfers to the next controller. The crew would then never need to 'change frequency' the voice comms would automatically be with the correct controller. This was demonstrated with live aircraft more than a decade ago. It is a bit antediluvian to be continually changing frequencies.
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Old 21st Feb 2017, 18:49
  #48 (permalink)  
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For all those involved 33 minutes( if that is the correct duration of silence )must have seemed a long time. Considering it was headed for London it must have been an intense time also for all those at CRC . Just imagine the available alternatives, had this been another Helios airways ghost plane. The crew do deserve a bit of a vindaloo rollocking.
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Old 22nd Feb 2017, 13:49
  #49 (permalink)  
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Could Nigel not just have sped up a bit until overhead? I'm sure a quick Descend RA would have got them talking to someone...
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Old 22nd Feb 2017, 14:46
  #50 (permalink)  
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Wonderful example of thinking outside the box.
I'm going to write that into our SOPs,asap!
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Old 22nd Feb 2017, 19:22
  #51 (permalink)  
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Nigel was ahead until 16:30 UTC, slowed down to get better video.
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Old 23rd Feb 2017, 06:37
  #52 (permalink)  
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Is that a fact?
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Old 23rd Feb 2017, 08:06
  #53 (permalink)  
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slowed down to get better video
Is that a fact?
Whow ! and you really believe that ?
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Old 23rd Feb 2017, 10:39
  #54 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by notapilot15 View Post
Nigel was ahead until 16:30 UTC, slowed down to get better video.
That's partly factual, and partly an alternative fact.
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Old 23rd Feb 2017, 12:40
  #55 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Smokey Lomcevak View Post
Could Nigel not just have sped up a bit until overhead? I'm sure a quick Descend RA would have got them talking to someone...
Unless Ba decides to descend there will be no RA.
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Old 23rd Feb 2017, 13:25
  #56 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by DaveReidUK View Post
That's partly factual, and partly an alternative fact.
Relax. May be a mere coincidence. 9W118 was flying 10-12kts faster and caught up with BA which slowed down 2kts.

Assuming BA had front row seat to this drama... from 15:53 UTC to 16:26 UTC and aware of impending intercept, gawking is human nature.

@Yaw String, Hollywood already has a SOP for this, watch Executive Decision(1996). Use taillights to send morse code.

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