Archive | August, 2011


It can’t be that bad: BA is recruiting again

The last time British Airways offered wannabe pilots the chance to train for a job with the company was before 9/11. Between now and 2016, says BA head of recruitment Robin Glover, the airline needs 800 new pilots, about half of which will be newly trained. The balance will come from other carriers and the military. […]

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Things ain’t what they used to be…

Honestly, what is the world coming to? When I was an instructor there we used to train them for British Airways…

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On a wing and a prayer at Old Warden

No roaring reheat at this air show. More of a Keatsian rural idyll.  The runways are grass, and the only sound that disturbs the rustling of the surrounding copses is the sputtering of an ancient aero engine. Occasionally. A summer air show at Old Warden aerodrome is as quintessentially English as the Henley Regatta, but more peaceful. Both […]

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#AF447 and the obstacles to improving airline pilot training

In 1986, more than a year before the A320 went into service, I made a visit to Toulouse to fly the A300 that had been kitted out with a sidestick for the left hand seat pilot. This was wired up to the same fly-by-wire computer systems that the A320 was about to get. Chief engineer and test pilot Bernard […]

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Airline pilots who’ve forgotten how to fly

There’s been a lot of interest in my previous blog entry “AF 447 and the loss-of-control epidemic”. People pointed out that there had been nine fatal LOC airline accidents since 2000, not just the seven I’d mentioned. I’ve since added them to the list. One of my regular correspondents, David Connolly – who flies 747s […]

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AF447 and the loss of control epidemic

Including Air France flight 447, there have been twelve fatal loss-of-control airline accidents since the year 2000.   Altogether, they have killed 1,394 people.   The common factor in all of them was pilot inability to recognise what was happening and to do something effective about it in time to save the aircraft.   So […]

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AF447 the way the pilots saw it

EASA has just called a Loss of Control (LOC) conference in Cologne for 4-5 October.   Definitely better late than never. The Air France 447 accident suggests that no airline can consider itself free of the risk of loss of control if circumstances combine to confuse their pilots.   Meanwhile the French investigator (BEA) of the […]

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Advancing operational risk management

Here’s a date for your diary: 8-9 September 2011. Flight International is running its Flight Safety Conference in London, and it’s booking up fast with delegates and speakers from all over the globe. The theme is improving operational risk management and the methods by which it can be achieved. This includes everything from iPads on […]

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