Never again on PE - share your mistakes

Re: Never again on PE - share your mistakes

Postby Jan Lueders » Tue Aug 29, 2017 3:27 pm

I've flown all of the eleven CATs. After CAT-11 I thought communication with the ATC would be no problem in the future.
After one week without flying on PE I was as nervous as I was on my first flight. First I called the tower of San Luis for the taxi clearance, then I didn't unterstand the tower-ATC and needed a "say again".
Both no problems, but I think, I'll have to train a little bit more. I'm still to nervous. :-)
Jan Lueders
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Re: Never again on PE - share your mistakes

Postby pkofman » Tue Feb 13, 2018 6:35 am

Dumb error

I was flying into klas the other night from the south and requested the ils 26 l approach. Innocent enough I thought!
I was in for a surprise

I tuned the Ils freq ( found on my up to date foreflight and on skyvector and it did not work.
I was a bit flustered as I got closer and had to ask for a change as the cdi was not indicating any signal
I had the same freq from all the required up to date sources upon which I rely in both online and real world sources
Luckily weather was good for the visual

Later that evening thinking about what had happened it dawned on me to check the real world notams
Sure enough, the freq has changed for the ils ils 26l into klas
I do not routinely check notams when flying online
I went back and flew the approach and it worked perfectly with the new freq.

So lesson learned. Check notams just like in real life.
Another great take away from PilotEdge and thankfully I had this experience in the sim not out in the system

Peter Kofman
Real World Pilot
Night and Water./FLOATS AMPHIB..
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Location: Toronto Ontario

Re: Never again on PE - share your mistakes

Postby ccrepon88 » Tue Feb 13, 2018 9:15 am

I was Alaskan 3355, an IFR airline flight (can't recall if I was in my Rotate MD-80 or another aircraft though). I was flying KRNO to KSEA, and up at FL280 as a cruising altitude. Well, for some reason I missed a call for a frequency change from I think Seattle center (sorry I'm from east coast, could be another ARTCC name) to Seattle approach. So here I am at FL280 on the HAWKZ star asking "hey uh.. am I over HAWKZ right now?" Center nicely told me yes, and to descend to about 14,000 as I recall. I should have been at 12,000 at that point on the STAR.

So here's the main mistake in my view, although the aforementioned was no small error:
When contacting Seattle approach, I acted as if the controller didn't know my situation. So my check-on was something like "Good morning, Seattle Approach, uh... Alaskan 3355...uh we're up at flight level two eight zero, and uh..hah, on the STAR here should be at 12,000 but I missed an uh.. a call about 20 minutes ago. Sorry about that. We're having some trouble with the FMS for some reason, not sure why but ah.. yeah should be at 12,000" (yikes, I know)
So I get this kind of sharp response from approach telling me "Good day 3355 and radar contact.. I didn't need to know ANY of that. Just who you are and your altitude is fine. We're all in communication with each other so I'm aware of your situation". He then went on to ask me if I recall being assigned a heading of 180... meanwhile I'm like 90 degrees or a bit less away from that heading, since I"m focusing so much on telling ATC about this problem, rather than actually obeying my last turn command!

So there's the main story. One issue for me is that I have borderline personality disorder. That might sound totally irrelevant to aviation, but when it comes to air traffic control - and general human interaction, it means I'm offended very easily. So I need to work on not letting a controller's honesty offend me, taking it personally somehow. Any feedback on this of course is welcome. Also hi, I'm from Connecticut and age 29. First post on the forums. G'day
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Re: Never again on PE - share your mistakes

Postby Keith Smith » Sun Mar 18, 2018 7:29 am

ccrepon88, don't take it personally and try to avoid the "life story" check-ins. Understand that the radio is a shared resource and that the controllers are working literally hundreds of positions at the same time. Brevity is key. The difference between "Seattle Approach, Alaska Thirty Three Fifty Five, flight level two eight zero descending to one four thousand," and 1-2 paragraphs of information is significant in terms of the controllers' ability to handle other traffic at the same time.

On some of my live streams, you'll see my reaction when I'm working 10+ pilots, with everything going well, then that call starts coming in...."Santa Barbara Southern California Approach, THIS IS Cessna Skyhawk November One....Two....Three...Alpha Bravo.....WITH YOU....umm.....approximately seven point eight nautical miles, of Kilo Sierra Bravo four thousand three hundred and twenty feet.....we would like to LAND at ....KILO....SIERRA...BRAVO.....ALPHA.....we have information Quebec on board.....OVER."

During this time, I have literally shaved (twice), picked up a foreign language, and had to contend with 3 other calls during that time, or I've had to talk right over the top of you on other freqs to vector someone onto final, or clear someone to land who also checked in midway through the speech.

The trick is to drop the words that don't mean anything and just provide the info that's needed. In the case above, "Santa Barbara Approach, Skyhawk One Two Three Alpha Bravo, ten miles west Santa Barbara, landing with Quebec." ATC will then issue a squawk and likely ask you to say altitude (I specifically didn't include it in the first call simply for brevity...and we know they're going to issue a squawk anyway, so there will be another opportunity to provide the altitude shortly).

Regarding the personality disorder, it's good that you're aware of your tendency to be offended easily. That's going to be an ongoing challenge as the controller provide direct guidance as a matter of doing their jobs here. This is something to try to keep in mind on every flight, along with the ultimate goal of nailing the comms such that there are no corrections to give.

The most likely way to achieve that would be to take on flights that don't overstretch your current level of experience and ability. Do some procedurally simple flights, with procedurally simple aircraft. That way, the likelihood of encountering a tricky situation is reduced. Then, slowly build things up over time, perhaps.
Keith Smith
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