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Old 2nd April 2015, 13:01   #106
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Default Re: Germanwings Airbus A320 with 150 people onboard crashes in the French Alps

Unfortunately in India we need to deal with far more fundamental stuff. In line with my earlier asking about whether you would feel comfortable flying with a pilot who is going through a messy divorce, or just lost a loved one, Fact is some of us have likely flown with pilots who simply don't have a valid license!

http://www.firstpost.com/business/je...e-2183353.html

What's more worrying is that this is not the first time this has happened either.

Jeroen
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Old 2nd April 2015, 14:52   #107
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Default Re: Germanwings Airbus A320 with 150 people onboard crashes in the French Alps

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Originally Posted by Jeroen View Post
Unfortunately in India we need to deal with far more fundamental stuff...
I guess it is not just limited to India. Pilots were found to be not qualified in this case:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2008_Me...ty_plane_crash

The Wiki link doesn't describe the background of the pilots, but the Air Crash Investigation eposide of National Geographic that covered this incident says that both the pilots had faked their qualifications.
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Old 2nd April 2015, 15:24   #108
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Default Re: Germanwings Airbus A320 with 150 people onboard crashes in the French Alps

All this has left me thinking about, for example, train drivers.

It isn't a glamourous profession, nor, I suppose, highly paid, and goes unthought of amongst all but train enthusiasts, yet they may have the responsibility of thousands of lives in their hands.
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Old 2nd April 2015, 15:26   #109
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Default Re: Germanwings Airbus A320 with 150 people onboard crashes in the French Alps

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I guess it is not just limited to India. Pilots were found to be not qualified in this case:
.
Too true.

It's very easy to take this lightly. Its a bit like if your drivers license expired. The next day if you get behind the wheel doesnt make you a different driver. But in aviation it's more than an administrative procedure, you actually have to take a test and pass a test. So you actually have to demonstrate during your pilot career again and again that you have all the skills, know how and knowledge to safely pilot an aircraft.

Private Pilots like myself are part of the same regime, although it migh be a bit less frequent.

Let there be no mistake, every pilot knows exactly what level of "currency" you have at any given time. It's part of being a pilot. You know your hours flown, expiry date of your medical license, your pilots license and specific ratings you might have and what keeps you current etc. etc.

Begin pilot is, for an important part, adhering strictly to process and procedures. The fact that both the carrier and the involved pilots take re-currency testing not seriously doesn't instill confidence that they would adhere strictly to other processes and policies.

So other then illegal, I think it is potentially symptomatic for just a very sloppy run aviation outfit. Lets face it, there was a reason Inda lost its AA/ICAO Class I rating.

Jeroen

Last edited by Jeroen : 2nd April 2015 at 15:27.
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Old 3rd April 2015, 23:28   #110
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Default Re: Germanwings Airbus A320 with 150 people onboard crashes in the French Alps

The FDR has apparently been found, and initial analysis seems to corroborate the 'deliberate accelerated descent' theory. Here's a link to the BBC report:

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-32173632

What's more shocking is the co-pilot's employer seems to have made serious omissions in due diligence, both while hiring him and during the course of his employment. Mental health issues are complex and need sensitive and intensive handling, not a 'he said he's fine and we believe(d) him' approach that seems to have been taken here.
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Old 4th April 2015, 06:47   #111
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Default Germanwings Airbus A320 with 150 people onboard crashes in the French Alps

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Originally Posted by Chetan_Rao View Post
What's more shocking is the co-pilot's employer seems to have made serious omissions in due diligence, both while hiring him and during the course of his employment. Mental health issues are complex and need sensitive and intensive handling, not a 'he said he's fine and we believe(d) him' approach that seems to have been taken here.

We will see how this pans out. Im no expert in this area, but privacy laws in most European countries don't allow to much probing by employer into the health of their employees. Even when for instance you take out a health insurance, it might be illegal for the insurance company to ask about your health. It's all about ensuring everybody gets an equal opportunity to a job, or for instance an insurance and doesn't end up paying more then the next person

At least once a doctor says you are fit, it cant be questioned any further.
This sort of 'murder suicide' as it is now called is extremely rare. Only a few cases worldwide are known, sometimes only suspected. So nobody really understands this, nobody can tell for sure what the symptoms are, what to look for and what drives these people to do these horrible acts.

Just because at some point in time somebody suffered from depression, doesn't mean he or she wouldn't make a safe pilot, once cured. Lots of pilots out there that prove this every day.

Going by what I read on the various aviation forums and blogs one thing most agree on that regular mental checks are most likely ineffective as an instrument to prevent these sort of accidents.

I go back to the earlier discussion. Maybe murder suicide is so rare, we just need to accept that it can happen and you cant really do anything to prevent it, no matter how big the public outcry for action might be.

I am for all reasons I pointed out earlier for a better mechanism to take into account the mental state of a pilot. Truth be told, looking at accident statistics, to date, we should worry more about physical state of pilots. Accidents due to mental state do happen, usually as a contributing factor. We don't know really know often. But we are beginning to understand a bit more about fatigue and for sure quite a large number of incidents and accidents have had fatigue listed in the official report as contributing factor. It is also very easy so solve. Employ more pilots so each pilot flies fewer hours and rests more.

Jeroen

Jeroen

Last edited by Jeroen : 4th April 2015 at 06:55.
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Old 6th April 2015, 21:31   #112
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An interesting article just appeared here: http://www.latimes.com/world/europe/...ry.html#page=1
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Old 9th April 2015, 08:37   #113
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Default Re: Germanwings Airbus A320 with 150 people onboard crashes in the French Alps

Although media reports suggest the copilot in this case deliberately crashed the plane, committed suicide and a mass murder, I would want to wait until the official report by the French are released regarding the root cause of this tragedy.
What ever little I know about the topic of depression, a depressed person, generally will try to shun away from society, any relation with people, fame and glamor. Its unusual to see a depressed person trying to get a last hurrah so to speak, and commit an act which will make him notorious or famous for all eternity. That kind of attitude is displayed by someone who has a misplaced sense of self esteem, hyper-inflated ego and who believes he is bought into this world to be something spectacular. Also such a person will try to be famous, by doing something great, but committing mass murder, one needs to be a sociopath, with no sense of morality.
I wouldn't want to comment on the state of Lufthansa/Germanwing's training or induction, but in India all airlines have a detailed psychometric analysis of flight crew at the time of induction, and any such tendencies are easily caught and eliminated. Also it is possible for a super narcissistic egomaniac to fall under depression because he is not seeing the success he feels he deserves in his head...

Last edited by apachelongbow : 9th April 2015 at 08:40.
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Old 10th April 2015, 05:29   #114
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What ever little I know about the topic of depression, a depressed person, generally will try to shun away from society, any relation with people, fame and glamor. Its unusual to see a depressed person trying to get a last hurrah so to speak, and commit an act which will make him notorious or famous for all eternity. That kind of attitude is displayed by someone who has a misplaced sense of self esteem, hyper-inflated ego and who believes he is bought into this world to be something spectacular. Also such a person will try to be famous, by doing something great, but committing mass murder, one needs to be a sociopath, with no sense of morality.
I wouldn't want to comment on the state of Lufthansa/Germanwing's training or induction, but in India all airlines have a detailed psychometric analysis of flight crew at the time of induction, and any such tendencies are easily caught and eliminated. Also it is possible for a super narcissistic egomaniac to fall under depression because he is not seeing the success he feels he deserves in his head...
Check the link in my previous post and you will see an article that is along similar lines. Just about all airlines will have some form of phycological testing as part of their recruitment process. When I read what the comments are on the various aviation forums, most experts seem to agree that these tests are far from fool proof and the main problem is that it is just a snapshot. A pilot's career is some 40 years and the chances of people developing mental problem during their life span and thus career and at a later age are actually higher then when you are relatively young late teens, early twenties.

So to spot this you would have to do very regular monitoring and testing. Pilots do need frequent medical tests, but they tend to be more physical tests then anything else as far as I know. And even the effectiveness of these regular checks are apparently far from perfect.

Apparently, depression isn't necessarily a reason to ground a pilot either. It really depends what form, how severe. As long as it doesn't interfere with being able to perform as a pilot it is not an issue.

Jeroen

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Old 10th April 2015, 06:01   #115
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The other problem with written psychometric tests is that people game them. They often fill them keeping the ideal employee in mind and not how they actually are, given how critical it is.

Is it a written test or an interview in Indian airlines?

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Old 10th April 2015, 09:04   #116
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Default Re: Germanwings Airbus A320 with 150 people onboard crashes in the French Alps



Close Shave for an aircraft in Kolkata. Wonder how did the fuel level go so low.

Article Link

Quote:
KOLKATA: A flight with nearly 150 people had a close shave on Tuesday night when it flew into Kolkata with hardly any fuel left. Sensing the urgency in the pilot's voice, the air traffic control put all incoming flights on hold, allowing the plane to fly the shortest possible route and land.

On Tuesday evening, a Tigerair flight from Singapore with 141 passengers was headed for Dhaka. The weather in the Bangladesh capital was, however, not conducive to land and the pilot was forced to hover over the city. Minutes ticked by and passengers in the cabin grew restless. Tigerair is a low-cost carrier based in Singapore that flies to different cities across South-East Asia and to Chennai, Tiruchurapalli, Kochi, Bangalore and Hyderabad in India.
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Old 10th April 2015, 09:25   #117
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Default Re: Germanwings Airbus A320 with 150 people onboard crashes in the French Alps

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Close Shave for an aircraft in Kolkata. Wonder how did the fuel level go so low.
Sounds indeed like a close shave. As this was a commercial flight it was most likely flying under IFR rules (Instrument Flying Rules). When you draw and submit your flight plan you need to ensure that when you reach your destination you have a certain minimum amount of fuel left. That is expressed in flying time, not liter or kg. Also, as part of your flight plan you will already have chosen several alternate destination in case you can not land on your original destination due to adverse weather conditions.

During your flight you need to monitor constantly your fuel situation and the weather conditions of your destination and alternates. You need to ensure that you can reach either and still have sufficient fuel. So that is a pretty dynamic process and it is not always an exact science.

Looks like these guys hovered around their original destinations hoping the weather would clear, but left it to late when they finally decided to make it to one of their alternates.

Without knowing all the details, we need to wait for the incident report, but this has all the tell tales of poor aviation decision making. They are not the first crew to (nearly) run out of fuel. Unfortunately, it does happens and planes have crashed due to fuel starvation.

The article talks about the captain making an SOS call to ATC. Who noticed his voice was tense and gave him priority. In reality what is more likely to have happened is the captain declared an emergency. With or without a tense voice that will get you the undevoted attention and support from ATC. They will do anyting in their power to help you.

For all the wrong reasons pilots have been known to been reluctant to call for an emergency. They think it might look bad on them, repurcussion from their employer and or authorities, lots of reports to fill out.

I don't know about India, but in the USA the FAA encourages pilots to declare emergencies. As long as it is a genuine and prudent decision to call an emergency your are doing a good job as a pilot. Again, it will give you all the priority and assistance you need.

I had to call an emergency flying my little Cessna 152 once, in very bad weather. I was very happy with all the support I got from ATC and without it I would have likely run into some serious problems. Never had to file a report, had a phone call with an FAA inspector the next day who listened to my story who's only comment was; good call, well done!

Jeroen

Last edited by Jeroen : 10th April 2015 at 09:33.
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Old 15th April 2015, 06:23   #118
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I just came across this article which I thought made good reading. Explains and gives a good insight in how planes get tracked these days.

http://www.fastcompany.com/3044490/h...king-apps-work

Enjoy,

Jeroen
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Old 15th April 2015, 08:47   #119
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I had to call an emergency flying my little Cessna 152 once, in very bad weather. I was very happy with all the support I got from ATC and without it I would have likely run into some serious problems. Never had to file a report, had a phone call with an FAA inspector the next day who listened to my story who's only comment was; good call, well done!
Even the Pro's have real problem with heavy turbulence!

http://avherald.com/h?article=484909ea&opt=0

My case was somewhat different, I wasnt sick, but the turbulence was so bad that it became impossible to read my instruments and navigate properly, so I too had to rely on vectors from ATC. They also assisted me in finding a good alternate airport as it was not just turbulent air up high, but very strong gushing winds at ground level. My original destination airport was experiencing heavy crosswinds, so I needed to find an airport with a more suitable runway into the wind. I could not even read my instruments, let alone consult my maps, iPad and airport diagrams. I needed all my concentration and 100% focus on just staying airborne. No autopilot on this littl plane. And even if it had, under these extreme turbulent conditions most woul advise to handfly the plane. Flying manually will allow you to put less strain on the airframe and wings then simple autopilots would. Modern more sophisticated autopilots are probably as good if not better.

Not sure why this flight crew did not call for an emergency, from what I read it really was one. But then again, this AVHarald report tend to be a bit cryptic.

Jeroen
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Old 2nd April 2017, 22:11   #120
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A remarkable update on the happenings of Germanwings

http://avherald.com/h?article=483a5651/0158&opt=0

Leaves a lot of questions unanswered for.

Jeroen
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