landing 'incident' - keep us informed please

Discussion in 'Open Discussion' started by rormad, Jul 16, 2003.

  1. rormad

    rormad Junior Member

    Jan 10, 2003
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    Sydney
    Flew back (Qantas) from Perth on Sunday (13th July) and was coming into Sydney to land on the old East-West runway (from the west). We got to about 100 m above the ground and then suddenly took off again. We then did a fairly wobbly old circle around northern Sydney for 15 minutes before trying again. During this time the pilot told us nothing. The mood in the cabin, while short of panic, was not calm and collected. Was there a problem with the engine? Did the wheels engage? Of course we landed safe and sound in the end and while taxiing the pilot broke in to inform us that he'd been told by air traffic control to pass over as there was another plane on the strip (north south main?). Of course he said this was not a near miss or anything BUT the point is he could have told us in the air to reassure us. Our lives were in his hands.
    Anyone had a similar experience? What do you think he should have done?
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  2. straitman

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    As a professional pilot I believe that I'm qualified to comment here :!:

    Yes I believe that the pilot should have provided at least some basic information. However I would back his decision in keeping silent if that was the most appropriate thing to do at the time. Remember what you said, "Our lives were in his hands." Whilst communicating to the passengers may be high on the list for the passengers it's a long way down the list for the pilots' who I guarantee have numerous other things to do.

    With regard to your other comments. The wobbly old circle as you put it would have been following headings given by Air Traffic Control (ATC) and the 15 minutes would have been at the discretion and direction of ATC who would be sequencing the arrivals and departures to ensuring that no further problems occurred.

    It most probably would not have been a near miss, however would have involved the submittion of an Air Safety Incident Report to the Australian Air Transport safety Board. This will be reviewed and reported upon in detail.

    In general it's probably good to remember that the Captain and crew of the aircraft are not going to do ANYTHING to endanger their own lives. If they are OK then you are OK :!:
     
  3. redrat

    redrat Member

    Apr 26, 2003
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    Vic
    I was on the first ever commercial B744 ER flight SYD-LAX and we had to do two aborted landings with the third try successfully achieved.
    No. 1 was nil visibility 30 metres before touchdown, No. 2 was a failed ILS transmitter on the ground and No. 3 resulted in the weather clearing within the last 50 metres. Scary - yes, but reassured that I was in the hands of the best pilots in the industry.
    Oh, and they were very busy up there and still managed to give us an update.
    However, I was on a DOM SYD-MEL one time with an aborted landing and we just went around again without any information from the front. Funnily enough I think they're probably busier domestically as there is more crew on an INT flight.
     
  4. rormad

    rormad Junior Member

    Jan 10, 2003
    43
    0
    Sydney
    Thanks for the comment, Pilot Bill.
    You are right about being in safe hands - it's my fervent belief that pilots should be paid whatever they want if they can get me safely where I want to go!!!
    I guess I was only speaking from experience on another flight. In 1997 flew from LAX to LHR (BA) and the same thing happened i.e. we aborted about 100 m off the ground. On this occasion the pilot told us within minutes that a fire engine had crossed the strip in front of us during some sort of emergency (probably false alarm) at Heathrow. This time we circled for another hour which was a bit tough considering we'd already been up there for about 12 hours or so. The guy across from me was obviously a total nicotine addict and even had an unlit cigarette in his hand before the first landing. I think after the aborted landing the extra wait for that first smoke of the day nearly killed him!!
     
  5. thadocta

    thadocta Active Member

    One thing to remember bere though, and it was alluded to by redrat, is the number of flight crew on board.

    Your domestic flight will have a captain and either a first or second officer, and if they need to abort a landing they will have their hands full (depending on when the decision to abort is made).

    Your long haul 747 will - in the case of a 744 - have a captain, first officer and two second officers, all of whom will be on the flight deck during take off and landing - only two of them will actually be busy though. This leaves the two second officers able to advise passengers as to what is going on whilst the captain and first officer keep up with flying the aircraft.

    Having said all that though, on one occasion when we aborted landing, the captain came on to advise us as to what was happening. She was very good about it too, but then we were still reasonably high when it happened. First I knew though was when the flaps started retracting. Happened on a QF 763 into MEL from SYD.

    Dave
     
  6. QF WP

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    straitman and thadocta, thanks for the insight into what the pilots are doing when this happens. Touch wood, it has never happened to me...
     
  7. straitman

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    Lindsay,

    Most (all) pilots would agree with you. They don't need the excitement either. Remember if it's the end of the flight and you are tired, then they most probably are also. :roll:
     
  8. QF WP

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    straitman, absolutely. They deserve a lot more credit than they get. I suppose until one sees firsthand what anybody else does in a job and appreciates the time, effort and expense that has gone before, nobody can truly stand in the others shoes...
     
  9. straitman

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    Thanks Lindsay......
     
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