Tag Archives | Kirkwall

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Piloting the shortest hop

After 24 years of linking remote communities in Scotland and its islands, Loganair pilot Stuart Linklater flew the shortest scheduled airline route in the world for the last time on Sunday, 26 May. He’s retiring to fly part-time for the airline out of Glasgow. Stuart has flown the world’s shortest route - between the Orkney islands […]

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Was AF447 enough to cause a reaction at airline level?

Flightglobal has posted a study of the airline safety issues raised by the investigation into the loss-of-control crash of Air France flight 447 in June 2009. The review examines whether the serious systemic inadequacies the accident revealed will trigger industry action to correct them. As the review demonstrates, the human factors issues associated with loss-of-control […]

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AF447: the wake-up call

The French air accident investigator, the BEA, has released the final report on the 1 June 2009 AF447 accident. Shortly after two o’clock in the morning Air France flight 447 from Rio to Paris, an Airbus A330, was cruising at FL350 (35,000ft approx) with autopilot engaged. The two pilots were discussing a heading change to […]

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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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Lessons from AF447: back to basics

As more detail of Air France flight 447′s surreal last four-and-a-half minutes emerges in the latest interim factual report by the French investigation agency (BEA), we see yet another example of a crew that lost touch with the aeroplane it was flying. It’s not difficult to see some predisposing reasons: it was 2 a.m. on a […]

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AF447 and the locked cockpit door

At the Paris Air Show today I was talking to a person who has reason to be interested in the loss of AF447, and she raised an interesting point: did the fact that the cockpit door is a post-9/11 security door make a material difference to the time it took for the captain to re-enter the […]

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Airline pilots ‘have not been trained for modern aircraft’

A draft FAA study into the relationship of pilots with today’s airliner flightdecks – specifically the automated systems in the cockpits - provides the hard data to prove that pilots are not properly trained for modern cockpits. The result has been serious accidents that did not need to happen. I have been arguing for ages that airline pilot recurrent training […]

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Nailing the Concorde “criminals”

Today in Pontoise, north of Paris, the French judiciary began to examine who, if anyone, was criminally guilty of causing the Air France Concorde crash. There is no obligation under French law to launch a criminal prosecution following an aviation accident. An accident could be presumed to be just that: an unintended, unforseen occurrence. This […]

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Another one in the sea at night

With the loss of the Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737-800 offshore from Beirut on 25 January, the phenomenon of fundamentally serviceable aircraft – and all their passengers – being lost over the sea at night is becoming frightening. I have put this issue under the spotlight before. Here’s a list of the main airline losses in this category since 2000. There […]

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