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Thread: Australian flight safety

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    Cricket Web: All-Time Legend Top_Cat's Avatar
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    Australian flight safety

    Anyone else notice a larger preponderance of flight incidents involving airliners? Aside from QANTAS' engine troubles (separate issue, but obviously off-shore maintenance is an issue worth keeping an eye on), we had the very well publicised grounding of Tiger Airways, some recent incidents involving basic CRM problems with J* and, a bit further back, some separation incidents, not including the one over the middle of the outback a little while ago.

    Tempting to put the blame at inexperience on the part of pilots (J* cadets these days get their hands on the controls as FO's after around 300 hrs) but that's not the whole story as the bloke involved in both Tiger flights was a training captain, many thousands of hours experience. Some are putting the blame at the feet of CASA's 'regulation' of the airlines. Who knows? Just thought a thread would be a good place to put any relevant articles because, well, even we don't have the same influx of LCC's in this country as we've seen in SE Asia (with tragic results), worthwhile just keeping an eye on who's ending up in the news, I reckon.
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    This won't fly with the public.
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    It's plane wrong to put safety in jeopardy.

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    The future of the airline industry in Australia is certainly up in the air.


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    I can't see QANTAS boeing to public pressure.

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    International Vice-Captain Redbacks's Avatar
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    I'd be interested to see data on the ratio of crashes to Km's travelled or number of flights.

    Turbulent times in the Australian aviation industry.

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    Cool your jets.

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    Cricket Web: All-Time Legend Top_Cat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Redbacks View Post
    I'd be interested to see data on the ratio of crashes to Km's travelled or number of flights.

    Turbulent times in the Australian aviation industry.
    Having tried for work purposes, getting data from the ATSB is damn-near impossible. They're a yoke.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Top_Cat View Post
    Having tried for work purposes, getting data from the ATSB is damn-near impossible. They're a yoke.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Burgey View Post
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    Where do QANTAS do their overseas maintenance, if any? cbf checking myself.
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    In terms of engine work, the wide-body (A380, B747) fleet maintenance is done in Singapore and Malaysia, some of the domestic B737 work is done there. It's a bit more complex than that too because Lufthansa have a partnership with QANTAS but they do the work in Melbs so, technically, whilst it counts as 3rd party maintenance, it's locally done. Airframe work is almost all done locally at Avalon and Brisbane.

    The issue is made even more complex because QANTAS get the manufacturer, Rolls Royce, to do maintenance too. That's considered by some to be iffy because if there's question marks over the engine itself, as with the Trent 900 (used on the Scarebus), aside from other vested interests, QANTAS are on the hook to keep using them as is and will be more so as B747's are phased out and the widebody fleet becomes exclusively A380 over the next 5 years.

    Personally, the biggest issue facing airlines is crew training. The nature of experience is changing and whilst some would say automated cockpit systems make that a non-issue, I don't think anyone can be sure how it'll play out yet. Almost all airlines are going heavily towards the cadet route which results in pilots with a fairly homogenous flying experience (18 months full-time in lighties + sim time = ~300hrs ATPL). While the cadet programs result in new hires who fly with massively experienced captains with huge breadth of experience flying different types in different places and contexts, the centre will hold. Eventually, though, you'll have an airline full of pilots who've only known cadet-style training, captains with 2000hrs in command who've known no other flying than airline flying (fairly strictly controlled). They'll have never experienced getting themselves out of jail flying in a clapped-out C210 out of Kunnanurra trying to avoid inters which closed in on them or being forced to learn how to put down a dr killer in severe crosswind. They'll only know good flying conditions and sims. Again, with cockpit automation, some will say airline pilots won't need any of that but, of course, the one time in a million that you do (AF447?)......

    Unrelated but the ATSB is releasing a final report into the Emirates scare in '09 this morning.

    Emirates Melbourne 2009 near crash final report due today | Plane Talking
    Last edited by Top_Cat; 15-12-2011 at 04:49 PM.

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