We have moved to http://aerotowfeeq.in

June 2, 2010

IX 812 pilot was rapped for hard landing

Filed under: Incidents — aerotowfeeq @ 11:49 am
Tags: , , ,

MUMBAI: The commander of the ill-fated Air India Express flight, Capt Zlatco Glusica, had been called for a counselling session and admonished by the airline’s air safety department in March for a hard landing in Thiruvananthapuram. The landing was well within the limits laid down by the aircraft manufacturer and the Directorate General of Civil Aviation.

“He was paranoid about hard landings after that. Due to the fear of being hauled up by the executive director (flight safety), Capt Glusica, like many pilots in AI Express, used to extend the flare (aircraft floating over the runway) resulting in loss of valuable runway for stopping after touchdown,” revealed a senior commander. International airlines do not haul commanders for a few hard landings within the limits as it puts undue pressure on pilots.

The Air India spokesperson confirmed Capt Glusica was called for counselling for a hard landing. “As per our airline policy, if the hard landing limit values exceed, suitable action is initiated or DGCA is informed depending on the level of excess,” said the spokesperson, adding the aircraft maintenance manual also stipulates that an inspection must be carried out by engineering if the limit is exceeded.

The TOI has a copy of Vg (vertical acceleration due to gravity) limits followed by AI and AI Express. For a B737 aircraft with a 1.65g landing, the pilot gets an email, for a 1.74g he is called for counselling, for 1.8g the report goes to the DGCA and only for a 2.1g landing is the aircraft sent for inspection. “Any normal landing is around 1.2 to 1.4g. The figure of 1.74g is way below manufacturer’s limit. To counsel a pilot for that is to keep him in a negative frame of mind for all approaches and landings,” said Capt A Ranganathan, an airsafety expert. Another shocking revelation, which, too, goes against airsafety norms followed worldwide, is Air India’s policy towards go-arounds.

“In Air India and Air India Express, there is no emphasis or encouragement to pilots to do a go-around if they are doubtful about the quality of approach and the subsequent safe landing. In fact, pilots in Air India and Air India Express are petrified of a go-around as many pilots, though not all, have had to explain their action to the executive director,” another commander said. “This is apart from filing an Operations Incident Report. A copy of this goes into the records maintained by the airline’s air safety department and another goes to the Directorate General of Civil Aviation,” says a senior commander.

Air India’s Flight safety website has a list of incidents reportable to the DGCA including “discontinued approach necessitating a go-around” in it. It means, irrespective of when a go-around was initiated, it has to be reported to the DGCA.

Aviation regulators abroad and airlines like Emirates, Singapore Airlines, Korean Air, have long done away with the practice of asking their pilots to file reports on go-arounds to give them complete freedom. The AI spokesperson said the airline encourages go-arounds in case of unstabilised approach. But he did not mention anything about pilots being questioned or not questioned for go-arounds.

Advertisements

Leave a Comment »

No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: