Too Tired to Fly

Discussion in 'OFF-Topic / Misc.' started by Vassili Zaitzev, Oct 6, 2009.

  1. Vassili Zaitzev

    Vassili Zaitzev Well-Known Member

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  2. chip haehnel

    chip haehnel New Member

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    #2 chip haehnel, Oct 6, 2009
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2009
    Fourteen hour days are much easier in the cockpit now a days with glass instruments, only two in the pit instead of three and beaucoup automation. I believe the underlying complaint I see here is boredom, as well as giving the union brothers an oppertunity to fill more slots to cover the necessary hours. European businesses have been copitulating to this pressure for decades to their disadvantage.ch
     
  3. ccheese

    ccheese Member In Perpetuity
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    The U.S. military pilots have many a fourteen hour day. I flew as a crewman on P2V's, P-2's and C-130's, and 12
    to 14 hour days were the norm. With the P-2's and C-130's, after arriving on station we always secured two
    engines, which allower for a longer time on station. With automation, it's much easier now-a-days.

    Charles
     
  4. Vassili Zaitzev

    Vassili Zaitzev Well-Known Member

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    Okay, thanks for the input. So 14 hour day shift are the norm for pilots then.
     
  5. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    Not anymore, they have strict crew rest policies. Anything over 8 flight hours and we required extensions from the Col. Anything over 10 required at least a 1 star approval.
     
  6. Goofy

    Goofy New Member

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    #6 Goofy, Oct 6, 2009
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2009
    I fly with a Dutch airline, on the A330 now, but used to be on the 737.....and I have to say, I was often quite fatigued. We did 6 day cycles where you would fly an early schedule the first three days, getting up at 03:40 in the morning, doing 2, 3 or 4 flights a day; followed by three days of late schedules, where you would end at 12 at night. Most days were 8 to 12 hour days. After this you would get three days off.

    I found the transition from early to late very tiring, as well as the work load. The actual flying isn't very stressfull, just the preperation for each flight, hassle at the airports, loads of de-icing in the winters etc etc.
    Also please keep in mind that these six days you sleep in hotels, which is not like your own bed; you always sleep less efficient in a hotel, strange noises, airco's that make a lot of noise, doors banging on the hall-way.
    After a while I decided to go on a 80% schedule to get some more days off. As the 6th day often ended late (23:00 or in the night), the first morning of your days off was crap and on the third day of your leave you had to go to bed early as you would have to get up at 4 in the morning......so you actually one only has a day and a half off to do all the things you cant do when you are away...not a lot of weekends off as well, which means with a spouse that also works full-time, you don't see her or the kids a lot.
    I am on the 330 doing intercontinental flights these days and the rules are muuuuch better!!! Loads more days off and basically less flights....I fully agree that there needs to be stricter rules for short-haul flights.....

    Just my thoughts on it.....
     
  7. Vassili Zaitzev

    Vassili Zaitzev Well-Known Member

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    Interesting Goofy, thanks for sharing.
     
  8. Butters

    Butters Member

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    I don't know about the rest of you, but when I'm getting on a plane, I'd like to hope that the aircrew will be well rested and alert.

    Anybody who's ever had a job where you're often fatigued knows how easy it is to mess up things that are normally just a matter of routine.

    I'll happily pay a few extra bucks to fly with a well-rested crew at the controls.

    JL
     
  9. RabidAlien

    RabidAlien Active Member

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    Amen to that.
     
  10. Goofy

    Goofy New Member

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    Thing is, with three or four flights a day, you often had only an hour inbetween flights. If you were running late, it meant trying to make up time to get the next flight airborne in time. Now I know one shouldn't rush things or shouldn't allow one-self to get rushed to make up time, but you do anyway, I think it is just a human reaction.
    Some independant reasearch organizations, like the Dutch TNO have done independant research into pilots fatigue and acquiring jet-lag when working on very different time-schedules (so not time-difference related, but just getting up at different times all the time), and their conclusion was that the rest times should be much more stringent. However Governments don't want to take over these recommendations as it would mean a bit of a financial burden for the companies and if not everyone does it at the same time, puts one company in a disadvantage with another.
    Anyways, like I said, I'm on intercontinental flights these days and mostly fly to AFrica, the Middle East and North America which don't give me much of a jet-lag.....flying to the East f*%ks up my bio-rhytm tho....but thats personal. Flying short haul just isn't all the glamour most people think it is.....

    (It's a great job still!!!!!...don't get me wrong!!!!)
     
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