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Author Topic: DCA Unmanned tower  (Read 17440 times)
uplink
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PPL ASEL, SOCAL AREA


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« Reply #15 on: March 26, 2011, 03:09:14 AM »

http://www.cnn.com/2011/TRAVEL/03/24/dc.air.traffic.suspension/index.html?hpt=T2

WOW!  Quite neat to hear.  Usually you hear Cessnas do the uncontrolled airport landing, but to hear commercial traffic it's just weird. 

I think those airline pilots didn't figure they would ever have to use that phraseology again.

Nice capture.

Dan

If you take a redeye flight back home from Kauai (PHLI) after 10pm local, your commercial (American Airlines, Aloha, Hawaiian etc) pilot will be using the same phraseology, the tower is closed.


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TC
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« Reply #16 on: March 26, 2011, 01:56:55 PM »

[quote“There are people in the control tower for a reason,” the source said. “There’s a whole lot of activity going on during the night.”

Those maintenance workers contact the tower on a special frequency to get clearance before crossing a runway. Inbound pilots contact the tower on a different frequency.

At airports where the tower shuts down for the night, ground crews and incoming pilots are required to use the same radio frequency to coordinate their actions.[/quote]

Exactly.  This was not a case of an uncontrolled field at all.  I've worked at HVN when the tower closed at 10PM local and there were procedures in place when the tower was closed, CTAF announced on the atis, etc.  I work many, many mids at BOS.  The pilots who landed had NO WAY of knowing or guaranteeing the runway was clear.  NONE!  Announcing their intent and when they cleared didn't guarantee squat.  It was pure luck and God's good grace that no electrician or mechanic or other airport worker was on the runway.  Shame on the front line manager for falling asleep, and SHAME ON THE PILOTS who landed without a clearance.  An absence of a radio transmission does not an uncontrolled field make
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SirIsaac726
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« Reply #17 on: March 26, 2011, 02:59:22 PM »

If this guy was on his forth mid of the week, he had three days where he had all day to get some sleep.

It isn't normal for the human brain to be sleeping during daylight hours.  Doing so takes a lot of adjustment and really puts the internal mechanism out of whack.  If he didn't have this shift in a while and all of a sudden gets these midnight shifts, it could be very difficult for him to get sleep in during the day.  It can take a week or longer for that adjustment (sleeping during day and working at night) to occur.
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alltheway
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« Reply #18 on: March 26, 2011, 04:16:24 PM »

Well what I wrote one page back about a huge minus means -

Pilots were expecting to land on a controlled airport and all of a sudden it turned out to be uncontrolled, so procedures did kick in, but it is way beyond expectation... And for the human nature you start wondering WHY is it uncontrolled, WHAT has happened to the controller ect.....

And with all the WHY's and How's  going on in your mind at the crucial moment of landing caused the AA to go around and after contacting the TRACON they still didn't had it clear what was going on, again wondering if tower at landing phase now would be responding....

Very distracting...

Just can't imagine what would have happened when a airplane is on final approach and trying to contact tower, switching back to TRACON and than something like this would happen : http://www.avherald.com/h?article=421fb65e&opt=0
« Last Edit: March 27, 2011, 05:33:35 AM by alltheway » Logged
VictorK
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« Reply #19 on: March 27, 2011, 09:06:40 AM »

If this guy was on his forth mid of the week, he had three days where he had all day to get some sleep.

It isn't normal for the human brain to be sleeping during daylight hours.  Doing so takes a lot of adjustment and really puts the internal mechanism out of whack.  If he didn't have this shift in a while and all of a sudden gets these midnight shifts, it could be very difficult for him to get sleep in during the day.  It can take a week or longer for that adjustment (sleeping during day and working at night) to occur.


Controllers deal with these shift changes for their entire careers.

This fellow fell asleep very early in the shift, and within nine minutes of making the last transmission prior to 1012's attempt to reach him. While I don't disagree that the body wants to sleep at night rather than during the day, it normally manifests itself as simply not being as sharp as usual; NOT as falling sound asleep, and sleeping through multiple radio transmissions and ringing phones. And with 20 years experience, this controller must surely be familiar with how his own body deals with such shift changes, and has learned how to cope with them.

I suspect that we'll be told there's some underlying medical reason for this incident.

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