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AF447 final crew conversation - Thread No. 1

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AF447 final crew conversation - Thread No. 1

Old 19th Dec 2011, 12:38
  #881 (permalink)  
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He also wold have removed the most inexperienced pilot from the equation and given the senior pilot on the flight deck at the time of the incident enough time to make control inputs...................
- not the way I read it?
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Old 19th Dec 2011, 13:18
  #882 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by SLFinAZ
He also wold have removed the most inexperienced pilot from the equation and given the senior pilot on the flight deck at the time of the incident enough time to make control inputs that very well might have shown the way out.
But the logic would be to take back his own seat, not the right hand one ...
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Old 19th Dec 2011, 13:27
  #883 (permalink)  
 
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So how do you read it? In crisis what is the SOP typically?

Here you have a situation where the least experienced pilot in effectively in command of the aircraft until it hits the water. The Captain is in a position where not only is he not able to directly intervene but he has the least effective position for access to information.

To me the captains failure to exercise command authority is the final hole in the cheese. My personal belief is that had the captain relieved the PF that the PM would have made the correct nose down SS inputs in the time it took the captain to strap in. At that point the captain would have either assumed the role of PM and allowed the PF to continue with the recovery or would have taken over and completed the recovery himself.

As far as I'm concerned had the captain exercised his authority and actually assumed command immediately on his arrival to the flight deck he might have been able to avert this tragedy.
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Old 19th Dec 2011, 13:33
  #884 (permalink)  
 
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SLF here.. Whatever happened on the Flight Deck of this A330 there was an absolute breakdown in command and control. The Captain of the aircraft has a duty of care for the safety of the passengers on his aircraft. Note I said his aircraft as the buck stops their.
He had time on his return to the cockpit to take command from the other two people on the Flight Deck.And possibly get the aeroplane flying again.
He forgot the 7P,s... Prior Preparation and Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance.

I have flown Air France many times between Paris and Johannesburg 747-400 and Paris-Luanda on a few different types of aircraft A330-200 normally. I never had a problem as far as I know. Knowing what I know now after this investigation concerning poor airmanship and even poorer leadership shown by the Captain. There will be no more Allez Les Bleu ie Air France for me.
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Old 19th Dec 2011, 13:38
  #885 (permalink)  
 
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My understanding is that the PF was in the left hand seat and the PM was in the right hand seat? Realistically it wouldn't matter either way which seat he took.

What is important is that the PF was unable to manage the situation in the aircraft commanders absence. Upon his return the aircraft was at risk and in an unknown and unstable condition.

Common sense dictates that in crisis the most experienced flight team needs to control the aircraft. further the PF has demonstrated by the planes condition his inability to manage the crisis. So the correct and logical thing to do is replace the least senior (and demonstrably least effective member of the flight crew).

Had he immediately instructed the PM to assume command (regardless of actual seating) and replaced the PF he would have had the best combination on the flight controls and given himself (and all souls onboard) the best chance for survival.

I'm sorry but any command pilot who would act instinctively in that manner should be driving a bus...(and I mean a real one).
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Old 19th Dec 2011, 14:29
  #886 (permalink)  
 
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I would be just as inclined to sit down strap in & get my hands on the controls, as I would have been disinclined to skip off for a nap just before crossing the ITCZ/Weather.
Some on here seem to have problems with that & think" all crew should be capable of flying" / "crew must respect the rest allocation to be rested for arrival" etc.
I don't think this situation was one where respecting anyones sensibilities was of any importance, the most senior guy (who is payed to be in charge/paid to ensure safety) should have taken a hold of the damn thing. . . on the 2nd point, the arrival, & how rested you feel for it,is of little relevance, if, in the meantime, you dump the ship in the ocean.
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Old 19th Dec 2011, 14:29
  #887 (permalink)  
 
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PF was in the right seat, why would the Captain take the right seat? I take it from your name you are SLF?
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Old 19th Dec 2011, 14:42
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Musical chairs involving replacing PF with PM to allow PIC the LHS, so we have the two most experienced guys sitting there, are probably not the best way to while away the time whilst rushing towards the Atlantic @10,000fpm, but I think the point made by SLFinAZ is basically correct (think he just had the seating positions of the respective FO's transposed) as I am sure most fare paying folk ( & anyone amongst us who is perhaps a little "old fashioned") would agree, simply the Commander should have assessed the situation, either before or after sitting down, come up with some reasoned analysis of the situation, & flown the damn thing (hopefully to a recovery, but I guess that is by no means a given ,as no one seems to have recognised/verbalised that they had stalled.)

If nothing else, it would be one less criticism we could level at them.
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Old 19th Dec 2011, 15:07
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Ultimately blame the passengers and market forces.
in every thread the same crap: blame the passengers who want cheap flights.
sorry, but its not that easy. im an architect and if i up a house in terms of design, building physics, statics or whatever I cant tell my client "sorry, You wanted a cheap house" either.
At least in Europe people expect rules which make flying safe, and airline management and staff, who obey these rules and act responsable ... ...
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Old 19th Dec 2011, 15:30
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In the same vein, no doubt those who flew in Concorde, expected top glass maintenance & no missing spacers in the LG, no doubt most pax wouldn't expect a European Flag Carrier to sub-contract heavy maintenance to China, & would similarly hope an airline would replace pitot probes found to have poor performance with updated ones PDQ. . . but, in aviation, as in most things in life, our fate is governed by grubby money grabbing individuals whose only interest in the business they participate in, revolves solely around syphoning off as much as possible, whilst paying lip service to customer care/safety.
"Officially" all airlines list their priorities as 1-safety 2 - punctuality 3 - service, in reality, whilst the staff are expected to adhere to this, the ones running the show care only for the bottom line.
This, regretably, is no different in a legacy carrier than it is in a lo-cost carrier, & anyone thinking that flying with a flag carrier is buying them more safety/better maintenance / more highly trained crew, is living in the halcyon days of the past. Everyone, but everyone ,is trying to cheapen everything, which is why Iberia is on strike today, may be a waste of time, but they are , at least, objecting to the march towards "cheap & nasty" championed by the Loco's & adopted by every aviation related accountant.
So, we can blame passengers for wanting cheap flights, but don't we all love a bargain ? or we can blame greedy shareholders for demanding that the accountants push the managers to cut everything to the bone (supposedly, always, to ensure continued survival of the company, in reality, more often to milk it dry) I would tend to swing to the latter, & it is prevalent in every aspect of our lovely modern society, aviation merely being the one we are discussing now.
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Old 19th Dec 2011, 16:11
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You can't blame passengers who want cheap flights.

Passengers assume flights operate under a set of guidelines that are there for their safety. They then buy the cheapest flights available to them that get them from A to B. If the airline that sells the cheapest flights then can't balance the need for airline safety and profitability, they either then lose money or cut corners on safety.

NEITHER of these issues are attributable to the passenger. BOTH are issues solely lying with the airlines. If the airline is going to cut corners rather than lose profitability, then THAT is what needs investigating, NOT laying the blame on the spurious notion that passengers are playing Russian roulette with their money.
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Old 19th Dec 2011, 17:27
  #892 (permalink)  
 
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Mike,
Only just read your post, so I want to catch one thought.

Don't we, and the airlines, and the pax, all of us, pay taxes to pay for an organisation (be it DGAC, FAA...) that makes sure that we (the SLF) CAN "assume flights operate under a set of guidelines that are there for their safety." ???

If a flight is really "LoCo", OK...
- I'll accept limitations on carry-on.
- I'll put up with the long walk to the only skybridge they can afford, or even just walk through the rain to board on the tarmac (ditto on arrival, been there, done that),
- I'll put up with limited leg-room.
- I'll pay for the beer and peanuts.
- I'll have a laugh at the CC selling scratch cards...

It all helps to get me, as an SLF, a cheap ticket.

BUT, I still expect my "LoCo" to be operated under certain rules... be it flight operations, maintenance, flight crew qualifications, or cabin crew safety training.
They are not just a matter of the "bean-counters".... they are supposed to be supervised by the 'authorities'.
Once that supervision goes......
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Old 19th Dec 2011, 17:37
  #893 (permalink)  
 
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Indeedy.

It falls first and foremost to the airlines to operate above board.
They are checked by the authorities who set and enforce the rules.
Neither of this is of any concern or culpability to the pax, who simply pay a fare to travel to a destination. The vast majority of whom give less than 2 hoots about how this is achieved as they're under the impression that the airlines operate lawfully and the authorities operate to catch the unlawful.
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Old 19th Dec 2011, 18:17
  #894 (permalink)  
 
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One can operate an airline under strict regulations and still have an accident.
There are airlines that follow the rules, and have a safety culture that makes them do more (and pay more) than expected to increase their chances... and then, there are the "others" who say "if I comply with the minimums" I'm a safe company.
I would compare this with a common daily driving decision: shall I go via the highway (and pay a toll) or do I follow the regular road? (They are both safe, if we comply with traffic rules...) I live a 175km away from the airport, and I always take the highway...(those 9,90 I pay for each side, are a small cost, when compared with the risk of having a car accident...)
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Old 19th Dec 2011, 19:02
  #895 (permalink)  
 
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ChristianJ,
It is indeed ironic that you bring the LoCo's into the spotlight on this thread in particular, which , all said & done is discussing shortfalls in pilot training/competence, timely maintenanance/replacement of poor components etc in relation to an Air France accident.
I think, given the passengers carried per year/flts operated, it would be unwise to start the usual anti Lo-Co rant, if one compares the safety record of (say) Air France vs Ryanair/Easy Jet.
I think my previous point is valid, nowadays you get no better, no worse, LoCo vs Legacy, & in terms of safety. . . . well, you tell me.
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Old 19th Dec 2011, 20:06
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Originally Posted by captplaystation View Post
It is indeed ironic that you bring the LoCo's into the spotlight...
I think you missed my point.... which was in answer to an earlier remark about pax expecting cheap tickets.
As I listed, LoCo means less legroom, no three-course meal, and boarding in the rain... you get what you pay for.
However, I do not expect that to mean "shortfalls in pilot training/competence, timely maintenanance/replacement of poor components etc " under any circumstances.
Us SLF (and yep, self-loading in every way), and the airlines, pay various taxes for that to be seen to.
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Old 19th Dec 2011, 20:25
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Noland...

I've got some stick time and solo'd a 172 but that's about it (48 hrs total just over 26 PIC).

My comments were not to suggest musical chairs since my limited personal interactions are circa 1970's. My dad was Marine air (GIB) and had good friends flying for Pan Am. I didn't realize that the Captain was now in the right hand seat (at least on the A330)....but then given the piss poor realities of a SS it probably makes sense to have the SS orientated to the pilots dominant hand.

The focus is action and intent. With a situation crisis and the plane obviously out of control why would he not assume actual command of the aircraft? I completely understand if he felt that they only had a few moments that he would issue orders vs assuming command. However....

I'm unaware of him actually asking for information and dictating specific action...he didn't demand a nose down attitude...he said something to the effect of "don't go up". To me he was along for the ride...not in command.
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Old 19th Dec 2011, 20:27
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Let there be no confusion between the service offered by LoCos and the basic regulatory requirements which apply to the entire industry, no matter about which airline one is talking.

But an airline whose crew either had woefully inadequate knowledge of Scheduled Performance requirements - or who simply chose to ignore the implications of commencing a take-off well above RTOM, even if only 1000kg above structural MTOM....?? Because that's what the AF4590 crew did - and as a result were grossly negligent, if not criminally so, from the moment of brake release, having apparently chosen to rely on luck.......
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Old 19th Dec 2011, 20:57
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BEagle, yep, with you there, although for me, percentage wise it wasn't much (still illegal though) & the bigger bollox was the missing spacer, which I tend to favour for the tyre failure over the "home-made" DC10 part, & shutting down an engine from P3 position without much , if any, in the way of consultation with the Commander.
Totally agree, the Regs are the same for all companies, in reality, the LoCo's cannot in any way afford to be too "cute" here, as any accident will be magnified by the press. Ryanairs biggest, was hardly their fault, Michael hasn't yet found a way of charging Starlings to fly
ChristianJ, OK, I just thought you were trying to imply that pax expectations were forcing the LoCo's to cut corners, when we were discussing a "Legacy Carrier" lack here.
SLFin AZ, think you are still confused Mate, at the start of the incident, the handling pilot (who was the more junior in age & experience) was sat in the RHS. The more senior (the "Cruise Capt" if you like) was in the LHS (logical I guess, as he takes the place of the -not very- sweet-dreaming Capt.)
So, if you wanted the two most experienced guys in the front, either you had to have musical chairs OR the Capt had to kick out "junior" (FWIW still a fairly experienced guy) & sit in the RHS. That was my only point, but I agree, he should have kicked someone out the seat & had a go himself . . .for me, no doubt.
So, everyone happy thus far ? next point ?
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Old 19th Dec 2011, 21:12
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"BEagle, yep, with you there, although for me, percentage wise it wasn't much (still illegal though) & the bigger bollox was the missing spacer, which I tend to favour for the tyre failure over the "home-made" DC10 part, & shutting down an engine from P3 position without much , if any, in the way of consultation with the Commander."

Your point of view is not supported by the inquiry.

the aircraft weight at which the takeoff was commenced was 185,880 kg, for a MTOW of 185,070 kg. The investigation confirmed these figures and showed that this excess weight had no significant effect on the takeoff and acceleration distances
Overall, the balance of forces at the centre of the bogie would result in self-aligning moment and two loads whose resultant is increased drag, that is to say a tendency to make the aircraft yaw to the left. The level of this drag would be at most around 1000 daN, very low in relation to the thrust of the engines. The influence of possible sideslip on the trajectory is thus very low or negligible.
At 14 h 43 min 24.8 s, the FE said, shut down engine 2. In the same second, the Captain called for the engine fire procedure.
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