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Sim Checks - Horror Stories?

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Sim Checks - Horror Stories?

Old 2nd Apr 2019, 14:13
  #21 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: wherever I lay my hat
Posts: 439
Arrived at sim to conduct an LPC with a body in the other seat, they arrive from the hotel I from home and we sit down for a cuppa prior to briefing. Which of you is here as the body? I am is the reply from both, check of licences shows that neither is within date to be checked without a change of date, crewing nonplussed training department not in on a Sunday so 4 hours of non checked sim to try what ever the guys wanted, expensive but a great confidence building exercise for the guys up front.
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Old 2nd Apr 2019, 15:39
  #22 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
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As a TRE myself I try to relax and assure trainees that this is an educational experience and after 2 days there should be either a gain of knowledge or revision. Having been a victim of the 70s cadre of @rseholes I try to conduct the session in a sympathetic and rational manner. There is no excuse for emotive language or veiled insults or any outward display of egomania. None of this is in any way professional. I hope that most of these dinosaurs are on the verge of extinction.
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Old 2nd Apr 2019, 18:30
  #23 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
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Originally Posted by red9 View Post
In five airlines , the worst " training" I have ever seen has been with , once upon a time, the "Worlds Favorite Airline".....................
To counter that... although in my case only 3 airlines the best training and fairest checking by far is with that airline that you mention with 6 type ratings and I guess well over 60 sim checks + 30 odd route checks. Having said that one of the best instructors was an ex-Cathay contractor.

My comparisons may well be out of date I admit.

Edit... OK there was 1 sim at the time that RNAV approaches were first introduced with an amendment to the procedures every week, that was all very confusing. It didn't help having a competitive ex-fast jet dick in the right seat. Only bloke I've ever had trouble with on the line and refused to shake hands with at the end of a trip incidentally.

Last edited by Capt Ecureuil; 2nd Apr 2019 at 18:43.
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Old 3rd Apr 2019, 06:25
  #24 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2018
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Nothing too dramatic, but watching a captain who had been in the game for over 25 years attempt the raw data ILS certainly put me on edge a little bit. We got there eventually on the 3rd attempt...
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Old 3rd Apr 2019, 09:10
  #25 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
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Originally Posted by CessNah View Post
Nothing too dramatic, but watching a captain who had been in the game for over 25 years attempt the raw data ILS certainly put me on edge a little bit. We got there eventually on the 3rd attempt...
Ah, the arrogance of youth 😊
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Old 3rd Apr 2019, 09:37
  #26 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2018
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Originally Posted by excrab View Post


Ah, the arrogance of youth 😊
Would be nice if you could elaborate in what way that was arrogant, I simply just stated what I had experienced and that was it 😅
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Old 3rd Apr 2019, 10:51
  #27 (permalink)  
 
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Inability to fly a raw data approach is wide spread, old as young. I have witnessed both. However it tend not to affect those who regularly practice.

There are of course other skills as important.
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Old 3rd Apr 2019, 10:55
  #28 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by CessNah View Post


Would be nice if you could elaborate in what way that was arrogant, I simply just stated what I had experienced and that was it ��
Ok, that’s fair enough, and I’ll try.

I’m only guessing, but I’ve a feeling that you’re not long out of initial flight training, and are probably pretty good at hand flying raw data approaches, after all it’s what you’ve been trained for just before joining your airline. On the other hand the guy or girl you were sitting next to probably stopped flying raw data approaches 25 years ago, except when required for simulator checks. What I would humbly suggest you saw was the simulator being used as it should be, to train someone who has a weak area, and then send them on their way better able to cope if the problem should occur on the line.

My question would be “what were the rest of his operating skills like?”. I made the comment because you appeared to have picked the one part of the check or training where it could be expected that a new pilot straigjt from flight school would be better than someone who has spent years in the right than left seat of an airliner. Like the guy you were talking about I have in excess of 25 years in the left seat of multicrew airliners ranging from turbo props to 737 variants. In that time I have had to deal with and manage flap failures, gear malfunctions, pressurisation issues, smoke emergencies, trim failures, numerous diversions, medical emergencies and one engine shut down in a jet. But I have never seen both flight directors fail and both autopilots fail at the same time, except once before the days of RVSM and PBN when we dispatched with an aircraft in that state to get it to maintenance. The raw data ILS, in my possibly wrong opinion, is the least likely scenario to be faced now days in the real world. Had you said that his/her CRM was awful, that she/he couldn’t apply a failure management model, or crashed the aeroplane on a V1 cut (which he/she has practised at least twice a year for the last 25 years) then I would agree there was something to worry about. Not being able to fly a raw data ILS possibly shows a correct attitude to SOPs, depending on which airline you fly for. If the company wants its crews to use the automatics and flight directors then if you know you have a weakness with a sim check coming up you shouldn’t have to practice in the aeroplane for the simulator, it’s supposed to be the other way around.

And as this may sound like the arrogance of age, I was in the sim last night with an F/O who I thought flew a far better single engined approach than I did and was probably a bit sharper all around than I was as far as handling the aircraft went. But I’ve also been in the sim with people who aren’t. Not everyone is as good at everything, but when you walk out of the simulator with your licence signed for the next six months you are both good enough. That’s really what matters.

Last edited by excrab; 3rd Apr 2019 at 11:22.
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Old 3rd Apr 2019, 11:27
  #29 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
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Amen to that.

"A man doesn't know what he knows until he knows what he doesn't know"

- well, the intake in these busy hiring times is a large part "boys" in this context, (and Male is a reasonable generalisation) - also often displaying poor cockpit etiquette and general lack of good manners (such as being glued to their sodding phones or trying to chat up the CC when they should be getting on with other duties). Anyway, rather than let it bother me, I try and enjoy the youthful arrogance and exuberance that I can no longer have. Thankfully the worst offenders almost invariably end up at the flag carriers.
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Old 3rd Apr 2019, 11:42
  #30 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
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I’ve had a few bad experiences myself but generally sim checks have been fair. I do remember being jabbed in the back of the neck by one man whenever he wanted to make his point. Another turned up very late, did not brief properly and then went into the sim and pulled breakers and put things out of place. With the increased time pressure caused by his lateness things got missed. Debrief was in the hotel pub and of course, he had no mercy.

However, I have noticed that more often than not the problem is the reverse. Individuals passing through checks, struggling on the same stuff time and time again. Prior to a sim check with X, an examiner told me that X, did not have the faintest idea of how to deal with an engine failure after takeoff during his last check and needed to be taught the whole thing again. Sure, enough, same happens again, X, has no idea and needs to be retrained. Chance of him dealing with that kind of failure on the line are low I would say.

In addition, I would say that blind eye turning is more likely if the subject is a TRE, LTC or manager. As a Captain, I was let off a few times when retraining might have been needed. As for FO’s, they are the most likely to face harsh checking in my opinion.

Last edited by Fair_Weather_Flyer; 3rd Apr 2019 at 12:05.
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Old 3rd Apr 2019, 13:34
  #31 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 1999
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Having been retired a number of years now I wonder if my ‘tuppence worth’ is relevant, but here goes.

My first simulator sessions were when I became a F/O and subsequently a captain on an analogue jet 40 years ago. We got two 4 hour sims twice a year. You did get out sweaty, but I felt that it was training. We had the odd ‘discussion’ but in general I felt that it was well handled.

I then got a job flying a 757 with another company. Comparing the two I felt that I did go from being trained to being examined. Now, it may be that the comparative complexity of the systems in the part digital jet, demanded so much more to be practised and checked in the time available. I did get the impression that the training department were under a certain amount of pressure to get the ticks on the lesson plan, in order to keep the CAA happy. But some things did grip, for example an failing emergency turn at V2, because I accelerated before the turn was over, but I was well above sector safety height. And I came out of most sim checks with that type of bad feeling.

But my biggest gripe is that it seemed the emphasis on the sim ride seemed to change, in order to ensure that whenever we got a malfunction, we carried out all the required check lists and briefings. It seemed to an old hand like me, that there was a philosophy that said if all checks and briefings were carried out, then all would be fine and safe.

As an old duffer, it seemed to me that if there was a fire for example, by all means run checklists and briefings but do it whilst you are pointing as quick as possible at the nearest available runway. It is no good flying holding patterns whilst you run the check list for hold fire for example. I watched one F/O have the engine break up at rotate, and it was 40 mins later before he ‘landed’, in fairly good visual conditions. His handling of the incident was praised. 40 mins flying holds on 1 engine in the overhead of an airfield?

Off to the pub now I have had that off my chest!
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Old 3rd Apr 2019, 15:32
  #32 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
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I finally got that long-dreamed-of call for a job, type rating included for a N European 737 start-up.
First day in the system for admin etc about ten of us stood there waiting for the CI in the sim building foyer (Company had no offices as yet) at the appointed time. After 20 mins or so we were beginning to wonder if we were part of a big hoax but he eventually stamped in looking dishevilled and out of sorts, and without greeting us announced (barked) his name and counted us out loud and then demanded, very crossly, where the hell are the other three then?WHY ARE HEY NOT HERE? It semed he thought we ought to know. I never saw him smile, he had a permanent scowl and never spoke normally, he ranted, demanded or barked rahter like a much-hated disfunctional history teacher I one had. In the sim he was an utter horror, shouting NO NO NO NO! THATS'S A NONSENSE, DO IT AGAIN! etc. He trained largely by shouting, ridicule and belittlement though his tech knowledge on the 737 was legendary and he could explain and brief superbly. His usual intervention in the sim wsa a long drawn exasperated sounding NAAAAAOW! leaving you to wonder what the digamma you'd done wrong as the nature of your error always took some time to become apparent. He loved multiple failures and double jeopardy too. The training was all done on the graveyard shift in order to save money so one was always zonked. Sims were scheduled at two-three week intervals, some a month apart so continuity was zero and it was impossible to plan for a session as they always changed, sometines to a phone call, "GET OVER HERE NOW, WE'RE BREIEFING AT MIDNIGHT" a week or more before expected. Even one such call on Christmas eve - a rostered day off - in the middle of dinner. I fibbed and claimed I'd had a glass or two of wine. One session even started with me getting a stand-up bollocking for my partner being late!
Even though the opportunity of a 737 rating was precious beyond gifts I began to dread the sim and performance suffered. Finally one night after a full-scale earbashing and belittling I said to my buddy if the **** does that one more time don't be surprised because I'll hit the pickle button and tell him where to stuff his poxy training. He must have realised he was overdoing it as he lightened up just enough to prevent it and I eventually got the rating. He was the angriest man and worst instructor I've ever met by a factor of ten or twenty but to be fair he did instil in us a very professional way of operating and a very thorough knowledge of the 737 and it's systems.

Later, on the line, I had a sim recurrent with two of the national TRE/TRIs who were doing mutual checks with me sandbagging and then then my check later. We reached the hotel at 1030 the day before our 0630 sim and as is their national disposition went straight to the pub. And I mean straight. It was 'Dump bags, down here in ten!" . By 1600 I'd been accused of backsliding as I'd managed to slip back to six pints against their eight and returned to the hotel feeling awful and with some pretty unpleasant remarks about the nature of my manhood and stamina in my ears.
Later that evening I went for some fresh air and on returning from a couple of hours brisk recuperation at 2230 saw them bowl back into the hotel ahead of me, evidently straight from the pub. And right into the hotel bar!
Next morning, both the boggarts were bright as buttons, I felt like shyte and they both put in exemplary performances in the sim. I wish I could say the same. Apparently we just don't breed real men in my country. (CRM wasn't a big thing in that outfit)

Those of a nervous disposition will be relieved to know the company didn't last long, thank God.

Last edited by meleagertoo; 4th Apr 2019 at 15:16.
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Old 3rd Apr 2019, 15:47
  #33 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: at the edge of the alps
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Don't remember an unfair SIM in almost 30 years, a couple of less enjoyable occasions would have been more pleasant with better preparation on my part. The legal necessities require so many "must-have" items during training that there is actually very little leeway for the instructor to add or deduct without risking to make the check invalid. Fail too little and a required failure is missing, fail too much and a subsequent approach or go-around cannot be flown the way it's required to meet the criteria.

IMHO checks may and should be harder than what may be expected in real life. Airplane systems don't know they're not supposed to fail in pairs, and I prefer walking off a sim sweaty saying "if I could handle this, I can handle most stuff that's actually likely to happen to me in real life" than sticking to a "no multiple failures" protocol just to have more than one piece of shit hit the fan out in the clouds. Even more so for training events. Fresh from training everyone can hand-fly on instruments, even partial panel. Why not use checks and trainings to keep that skill rather than moaning that "those youngsters can't fly without a flight director" when we never ask them to hone/keep that skill. So give me some electrics or hydraulics fault on top of my V1 cut to keep me busy, even if I swear.
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Old 3rd Apr 2019, 18:14
  #34 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Uk
Posts: 2
Never had a bad experience with my current outfit . Very good at not employing people like that, thank god.

always feel knackered and drained at the end but the amount packed in, but that’s life. Will I still want to go in there at 65, I seriously doubt it.
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Old 4th Apr 2019, 13:27
  #35 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
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Originally Posted by excrab View Post
My question would be “what were the rest of his operating skills like?”. I made the comment because you appeared to have picked the one part of the check or training where it could be expected that a new pilot straigjt from flight school would be better than someone who has spent years in the right than left seat of an airliner. Like the guy you were talking about I have in excess of 25 years in the left seat of multicrew airliners ranging from turbo props to 737 variants. In that time I have had to deal with and manage flap failures, gear malfunctions, pressurisation issues, smoke emergencies, trim failures, numerous diversions, medical emergencies and one engine shut down in a jet. But I have never seen both flight directors fail and both autopilots fail at the same time, except once before the days of RVSM and PBN when we dispatched with an aircraft in that state to get it to maintenance. The raw data ILS, in my possibly wrong opinion, is the least likely scenario to be faced now days in the real world. Had you said that his/her CRM was awful, that she/he couldn’t apply a failure management model, or crashed the aeroplane on a V1 cut (which he/she has practised at least twice a year for the last 25 years) then I would agree there was something to worry about. Not being able to fly a raw data ILS possibly shows a correct attitude to SOPs, depending on which airline you fly for. If the company wants its crews to use the automatics and flight directors then if you know you have a weakness with a sim check coming up you shouldn’t have to practice in the aeroplane for the simulator, it’s supposed to be the other way around.

And as this may sound like the arrogance of age, I was in the sim last night with an F/O who I thought flew a far better single engined approach than I did and was probably a bit sharper all around than I was as far as handling the aircraft went. But I’ve also been in the sim with people who aren’t. Not everyone is as good at everything, but when you walk out of the simulator with your licence signed for the next six months you are both good enough. That’s really what matters.
Funnily enough, I've been in that situation with losing both flight directors, both autopilots, autothrust, mach indication, Wx radar, etc, not long after take off. I was probably about 2 1/2 years in, regular line flight but with an experienced training captain in the left seat, as chance would have it. We have FMAs so heavily drummed into us that when you go to read them and it's completely blank, you very quickly have to build your SA the traditional way, shock horror! I think the skipper's prioritisation was absolutely spot on on that occasion. He was best off focusing on the problems in hand and letting me hand fly it back to London (from Hamburg; it was a lovely day). That was a great example for me in real time of how to run a non normal situation, use your resources and don't get caught up in the little details. If you've got a perfectly flyable aircraft, then a newish cadet is probably well placed to do the hands on stuff, assuming they're not being overloaded by the situation. The role of the captain in that case is surely to initially decide whether between the two of you, you have the combined skills, experience and capacity to continue down a particular path. Had it been a horrible stormy day, I imagine we'd have ended up back in Hamburg. On a nice clear day with a perfectly flyable airplane, though, you've obviously got more options when one of you is well placed to do the 'thinking' bit and the other to focus on the 'doing' bit.

Prioritisation, pragmatism and good CRM go a long way, whether in the sim or on the line. Certainly, I enjoy flying with or being trained by guys and girls with that sort of make up.
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Old 5th Apr 2019, 01:45
  #36 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: Amantido
Posts: 16
I only had a few simulator sessions compared to the other posters, but the worst two days of awful negative training have been in a simulator that had overheat issues and the flight instruments would go bezerk and the MCP would live its own life and the IRS's would work intermittently with HDG flag on the RDMI and EHSI. And couple this with multiple hydraulic and flight control abnormals. And this was LPC and OPC combined.

The next time it happens I won't even step in.

Last edited by Banana Joe; 5th Apr 2019 at 02:32.
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Old 5th Apr 2019, 05:41
  #37 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Sydney Australia
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Originally Posted by PlanetEarth View Post
Thankfully no assholes.

The airline I'm with now has a training department which emphasizes creating a nice comfortable atmosphere, throughly briefed, no major surprises and more a feeling of training than checking.

I feel it works well, and it increases confidence in your own skills instead of making you feel like a failure like some of the screamers can do.
Lord!

Wouldn’t that be nice.
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Old 5th Apr 2019, 09:59
  #38 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: UK
Posts: 316
I once had a chief pilot who constantly reiterated that the sim time was "your time" for training, and if the training wasn't being conducted to a high standard, to call him and he'd have it put right. That greatly altered my concept of training - it's there to make the pilot better, and it's incumbent on everyone to get the most value from it.

Of course, it was a third party training supplier so we were very much the client. Probably more difficult with in house training, but then again in house training should be highly developed to the training needs analysis of the operation.
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Old 5th Apr 2019, 11:50
  #39 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: belgium
Posts: 19
Angry

Originally Posted by iggy View Post
@november.sierra

No wonder how the germans were once on the verge of world domination.

Dude, me as a german i am actually tired about this kind of BS statements!
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Old 5th Apr 2019, 21:11
  #40 (permalink)  

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Join Date: May 2004
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The nation of Germany does have recent history which is diabolical. Sorry you are tired of being reminded of it��
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