Archive for June, 2011

On The Air In The Air

Posted in Uncategorized on June 22, 2011 by luckyjet

The Big Media machine is all abuzz about a Pilot talking in the cockpit with the transmit switch accidentally on.  A slow news day maybe? This happens all the time, for various reasons.

Equipment and the installations are different from one airline to another but the basics are the same. Several years ago cockpit noise was recognized as a problem due to the continued loss of hearing pilots experience.  The solution was to provide the pilots (or let them buy) noise canceling headsets. Problem solved. Then the FAA decided that the pilots couldn’t hear each other as well as they needed to so latching microphone switches were installed allowing the pilots to talk to each other without holding down the button. Problem solved again. Then it was discovered that the latching transmitter switch will sometimes stick in the ON position when transmitting on the radio. Now the problem is that pilots might blather on and on while jamming the ATC frequency with politically incorrect complaints. This is considered an equipment malfunction. In the news it was reported that Southwest Airlines considered  it a pilot malfunction and streamlined his ass.  These are all secondary issues since the media fuss is all about what was said, let’s address a bit of the primary media issue:

The pilot said he couldn’t get laid anymore because the women he meets complain too much. Additionally all of the Flight Attendants are Gays, Grannies, and Grandes. This really upset a lot of people. Everybody knows that a large percentage of flight attendants are gay. It is ok to say “gay” I think..Those that are Gay certainly do not obscure the fact. The Grannies comment refers to the trend in airlines hiring a large percentage of women in the 60 something age group. The Grande comment is insensitive, but still the man was talking about who he preferred to date.

So here is what we really have, a guy talking about difficulty getting laid and thinking it was in private. He seems to express a preference for a mate of his own generation,  height weight proportionate, and the opposite gender. These preferences don’t seem that outrageous to me. I wonder if any of them changed after the “Sensitivity Training” they made him complete.


Birds Do It`

Posted in Uncategorized on June 3, 2011 by luckyjet

In this age of wonders the latest weather report (hardly ever more than an hour old) is available to your airline pilots in text message form. Most airlines have a little printer that the First Officer fiddles around with constantly producing weather advisory messages and other important stuff.  At some airlines there is no printer and they write it on a cocktail napkin.

None of that is important, what is important is that  every dang message includes a warning “Bird Activity” or “Bird Activity On or Near the Airport” .  They have been doing this since disco was popular.  There is practically Nothing anybody can do about bird strikes, especially  at night.

When there is a collision course between a bird and an airplane we rely completely on the bird to avoid the plane. Always.

The little guys do a pretty good job too. If they can see you coming and understand that they need to get out of the way they almost always do.

Part of the problem is that birds don’t seem to understand a high speed airplane in a steep turn. They know we are there, birds can hear airplanes miles away. They can almost always see us, especially in the daylight. They just don’t expect the turn. Usually there is little or no damage to the plane. Other times things don’t work out so well.

So…..What would Luckyjet do differently? I would require all departures to climb straight ahead to about three thousand feet before turning. And we should have a cool horn to blast the same as trains have. The horn would do no good whatsoever but it would be fun.

Happy Landings